Last night I decided to take my new Sissy Haas book out for a spin. The transparency was 8/10 and the seeing was 6/10 on Pickering. I was using my 80mm Mayflower on a Losmandy GM-8 with Gemini 1. Observations were made with a 5mm Type 6 Nagler with TFOV of 20.5’ and a magnification of 240X. The GoTo’s were putting the objects in the FOV of the eyepiece each time, so it promised to be a good night.
aside from calling out bob's individual star observation reports, which are well done in an informal style, i wanted to point out that he's working at an exit pupil of 0.33 mm, which is also my favorite for close systems.
planetary astronomers sometimes try out that double star thing, set up with their usual 2 mm exit pupil, and wonder what all the fuss is about.
and ... oh, yes ... double star astronomy with an accurate GoTo system? -- priceless.
Bruce, an exit pupil of 0.33mm is what I use for the very tighest systems with 140mm aperture, but I certainly don't use it for everything.
Many doubles separate with less power, and many of them look better with less.
Regarding planetary observing - back in the day when I did this with a 10-inch Newtonian, I did not use ~125x (2mm exit pupil) - common magnifications were more likely 250x - 360x with that aperture, exit pupils of 1.0mm to 0.7mm. With a 9-inch refractor on Mars (1980s oppositions), 400x was about right (0.6mm) on the better nights (560x occasionally - 0.4mm exit pupil).
Saturn with a 7-inch apo - 180x -360x (1.0mm to 0.5mm). With my current 140mm refractor, Jupiter is best in the 120x-200x range (1.17-0.7mm exit pupil); Mars will take more power, 230x is good (0.6mm).
Overall ? - magnifications I used were similar to those other experienced observers used. And not a lot different from what I use on double stars, though on doubles I do go higher when needing more apparent size, something that can be done with points of light more readily than with contrast features.