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Equipment Discussions >> Eyepieces

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GeneT
Ely Kid
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Reged: 11/07/08

Loc: South Texas
A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO
      #5630762 - 01/18/13 10:55 PM

For more than a year I have wanted a 5mm Pentax XO eyepiece. This was because several people whose opinion I trust, and respect, said it well may be one of the top one or two finest eyepieces ever made. I made myself a nuisance to a few of you in private e-mails asking for recommendations and opinions. I appreciate your advice. It kept coming back the same--the 5mm Pentax XO is among the best of the best. In fact, it might be the best eyepiece in this range ever made.

My telescope is a 12.5 inch, F5 Portaball, with excellent optics. I am aware of eyepiece performance differences between slower and faster telescopes.

I wanted this eyepiece for a very narrow use. I wanted to squeeze a little more detail on the planets. During this time I had been acquiring the excellent Delos line of eyepieces. But, I also wanted the best of the best. I wanted a 5XO.

A vendor told me that one would be arriving in a week or so. Two months later, no eyepiece. Pentax had quit making them. We don't know if the reason was the Japanese tsunami, or some other reason. However, now I would have to try and find a used one.

A Cloudy Nights member from Canada heard that I wanted a Pentax 5XO. He offered to sell me his. I received it a week ago, but only tonight got to try it out. I did not have time to drive to my 'sorta' dark site about 22 miles from where I live. But, since I wanted this eyepiece for planetary use, I decided my back yard would work fine on Jupiter. I got the telescope set up, collimated, and had the mirror out in the yard for two hours.

I decided to compare the 5mm Pentax XO with my Delos 6mm. They don't make a Delos 5mm.

The Pentax 5mm gives me 305X, 24X per inch, with an exit pupil of 1.
The Delos 6mm gives me 254X, 20X per inch, with an exit pupil of 1.3.

I made several back and forth comparisons. The views were excellent in both eyepieces. I kept Jupiter centered for most of the comparisons. However, I also let the planet drift to the edges. I did not use my 2X Power Mate. I viewed without glasses because the eye relief of the 5XO is very small. It wouldn't make sense to view with glasses with the Delos, and naked eye with the 5XO.

Being candid, the on axis views were almost equal in terms of how much detail I could see on Jupiter's surface. Seeing was pretty good. As the views would sharpen to the max, it appeared that the 5XO was ever so slightly sharper. I believe I have a pretty good eye for such things, but it was a photo finish, and almost too close to differentiate.

Sirus was up, so I put both eyepieces on this gem. Again, both eyepieces performed superbly. The 5XO is going to make a nice double star eyepiece.

Some closing thoughts.

--My quest for the perfect or best eyepiece is finally over. I own a 5XO.

--The Delos is probably a better planetary eyepiece than is generally realized; the Delos series is just getting out and about in the astronomy community. I am sure that as more and more people use this fine eyepiece that it will gain a reputation as a 'must have' eyepiece. The Delos can hang in there with the best of the best. Maybe, a Delos is the best of the best. In a comparison of this kind, we need to remember that the Delos has 20mm of eye relief and 72 degrees of AFOV. This is one impressive eyepiece.

--Would I recommend spending a fair amount of money for a used 5XO if you had an excellent, almost equivalent eyepiece such as a Delos? Answering for myself, yes. Sometimes in life you just have to try things, and spend some money. My kids are raised, educated, and out of the house.

Now its my turn. I feel no guilt.


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Jeff Morgan
Postmaster
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Reged: 09/28/03

Loc: Prescott, AZ
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5630902 - 01/19/13 12:35 AM

Nice report Gene. So many eyepieces, so little time.

A couple of years ago I had a chance to look through the 5XO on Ron Bauer's 5" APO, a relatively fast scope (make escapes me at the moment). I looked at Alberio and Alpha Herculis. While the eye relief was short, it was a stunner on double stars.

I find the Delos to be excellent too, almost certainly the best thing Tele Vue is currently offering. And a reasonable price too. Not as good as "specialist" eyepieces like Brandons or the 5XO, but a solid 90%.

Nice to have both types in the case.

Edited by Jeff Morgan (01/19/13 12:37 AM)


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John K
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/26/05

Loc: Vernon BC Canada
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Jeff Morgan]
      #5630935 - 01/19/13 01:03 AM

I am happy with my 6mm Delos for my planetary work.I don't feel any short comings with it.It is better than my previous Pentax 5XW.IMHO but that may have been due to FL and seeing.:-)

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bdcmd
sage
*****

Reged: 03/14/08

Loc: Glen Rose, Texas
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5630979 - 01/19/13 02:05 AM

Quote:



Some closing thoughts.

--My quest for the perfect or best eyepiece is finally over. I own a 5XO.
Now its my turn. I feel no guilt.




Enjoyed your post, as usual, Gene. I also own the Pentax XO 5 and 2.5, but not the Delos. I have stayed with everybodies favorite eyepiece to diss: the Radian. I own the 3,4,5,6,12,18 and am looking for the 8. In comparing the XO 5 to my Radian 5 and 6 tonight on Jupiter and the trapezium, and Sigma Orionis, using my Vixen 100edsf ED doublet, I came to a similar conclusion: the XO is slightly sharper on axis and no worse off axis. The XO has miserably short eye relief, which limits how long I could use it to try to break through the seeing on the Trap; never did see E and F stars tonight. The Radians allowed a much more comfortable, long duration study, due to the better eye relief, which produced averted vision star E in the Trap, as well as the C star in Sigma Orionis with direct vision; the XO could show the C star with averted vision most of the time, but trying to hold the view long enough to catch the seeing improve enough for direct vision confirmation of the C star in the XO was fatiguing on the eye. Ultimately, the comfort of the long eye relief Radian allowed it to max out the opportunities presented in the nights seeing variability. The XO is still the absolute on axis resolution champ, but the Radian is just so much more comfortable to use. I can only try to imagine the improvement that the Delos might bring to the table. But, for now, congratulations on your new, top of the class planetary eyepiece. Thanks so much for your posts. And please, continue the A::B comparisons; they are very helpful, as you have noted. bdcmd


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Greg77
super member


Reged: 05/02/09

Loc: Slovenia, EU
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: bdcmd]
      #5630997 - 01/19/13 02:33 AM


Nice report. Back in 2012 I've compared Pentax XO 5.1 with Pentax XL 5.2mm in my 5" scope. The eyepiece really lived up to its reputation for optical excellence. In the end I sold both and bought brand new XW 5mm. Ultimately, the comfort of the long eye relief XW is just what I need to study the planets...


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andydj5xp
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 05/27/04

Loc: 52.269 N/10.571 E
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5631011 - 01/19/13 03:25 AM

Quote:

--Would I recommend spending a fair amount of money for a used 5XO if you had an excellent, almost equivalent eyepiece such as a Delos? Answering for myself, yes. Sometimes in life you just have to try things, and spend some money. My kids are raised, educated, and out of the house.




You are well advised to keep the XO. Having at your disposal the very best of the best is quite a comforting situation.

I'm sure that in the long run the Delos will see much more focuser time due to its ease of use (AFOV, eye relief) without sacrificing quality. And yet: whenever you want you can insert the Pentax .... and happily switch back to the Delos for its generally outstanding performance.

I've had the same experience comparing the ZAOIIs with the Leica ASPH zoom. It's a very comfortable situation.

Andreas


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kkokkolis
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 09/23/09

Loc: Piraeus, Greece
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: andydj5xp]
      #5631182 - 01/19/13 09:11 AM

A friend of mine (we observed some times together under dark skies) has the 5mm XO and he is enthusiastic about it. I never asked him to show me because a find even a 6mm Ortho difficult to use, that's why I got the 6mm Delos that impressed me. I used it with my 6SE that barely stands eyepieces bellow 10-8mm (for my eyes and floaters) and I had a beautiful Jupiter last week. I might add a 5mm planetary and I'm thinking about a Radian perhaps.
Since amateurism means enjoyment one should get what he enjoys without stressful effort. There's no need for remorse since any form of joy that doesn't harm others is not considered a sin any more in our western countries (in contrast with medieval or victorian times). On the other hand one shouldn't feel uncomfortable if he can extract enjoyment from cheap pieces of equipment, resisting the consumeristic frenzy the money flow tries to enforce. Cost and value aren't the same thing.


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
*****

Reged: 12/26/04

Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: kkokkolis]
      #5631463 - 01/19/13 12:14 PM

Good report, but in able to really tell the difference in an EP back and forth test, you need to keep both FL eyepieces the same.

254x and 305x are a lot different from each other.

Cheers,


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russell23
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Reged: 05/31/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5631680 - 01/19/13 02:35 PM

Quote:

Good report, but in able to really tell the difference in an EP back and forth test, you need to keep both FL eyepieces the same.

254x and 305x are a lot different from each other.

Cheers,




Oh I don't know Mark. I think this comparing eyepieces at exactly the same FL criteria is a bit overblown. We compare eyepieces that have a wide range of variation in optical characteristics. Just look at BillP's 24-26mm comparison which had the following % differences between the largest and smallest value in the review:

Magnification: 8%
AFOV: 66%
Usable eye relief: 285%
Eye lense diameter: 81%

The eye relief, eye lense diameter, and AFOV may all play a role in the usability of the eyepiece to an observer which could ultimately impact the ability of the observer to relax and observe and therefore the ability to see details with the eyepiece.

An eyepiece is a package of characteristics and focal length is just one of those characteristics. I don't think a 20% magnification difference is all that significant. We don't see a large demand on the market for 1.20x barlows.

Dave


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
*****

Reged: 12/26/04

Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: russell23]
      #5631777 - 01/19/13 03:37 PM

Overblown? Hardly.

@ 254x, Jupiter may show sharp detail, and @ 305x you may NOT see the same sharp detail, or you may. It all depends on the sky and conditions. There is quite a difference at these two magnifications on any given night. Now, put those two same mags on Saturn, and both will work a lot better as Saturn can take more mag than Jupiter on most nights.

I used to think the same thing, but a REAL COMPARO can only be done on two diff eyepieces at the same magnification, or VERY CLOSE to it.

Cheers,


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BillP
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: russell23]
      #5631840 - 01/19/13 04:26 PM

Quote:

An eyepiece is a package of characteristics and focal length is just one of those characteristics. I don't think a 20% magnification difference is all that significant. We don't see a large demand on the market for 1.20x barlows.

Dave




Dave, very true that folks don't generally demand 1.2x Barlows! IMO, the magnification difference can be important depending on the circumstances.

In the case of the OPs scope, a 24mm vs a 26mm eyepiece will generate little difference in magnification (61x vs 66x). The brightness though will be 17% brighter in the 26mm due to the larger exit pupil. 17%, while sounding like a lot, visually is noticeable but not significant..so not a WoW 17% brighter. However, it will well explain why fainter or adverted vision stars might seem more easily seen. Switch to an 6mm vs 5mm in same scope and now the brightness difference is to have a 44% brighter image in the 6mm and 50x less magnification (significant when potentially working at near the top magnification an atmosphere may be allowing). So yes, while the magnification difference may be just 20%, the brightness difference is a whopping 44%. And with that extra brightness the image will appear more contrasty visually as well in the 6mm. At higher magnifications, these differences can be more significant because of dwindling brightness and contrast, whereas at lower magnifications a similar difference might not show quite so dramatically.

However, like you, I do not think it is a problem when evaluating eyepieces of different focal lengths...even 20% different because the report will still tell a story. Plus, any evaluation using a scope under a particular location's skys is really a system-test and not just an eyepiece test. So one needs to work in the aspects of the system to come away with how significant any noted differences might be.

Working at the high magnifications of the OP where exit pupils are approaching 1mm, to take away a result that the eyepiece pushing 50x more magnification and showing an image that is 44% less bright, to visually appear slightly sharper is actually saying quite a bit about that 5mm eyepiece! Phenomenal to pull off that kind of subjective result when the math is telling us what is happening between the two different exit pupils being generated. Just another report IMO that characterizes how that little 5XO was quite ahead of its time in 2003 and how it is still ahead of the current time. A fantastic eyepiece. It takes nothing away from the Delos which is phenomenal in other ways. But it does highlight just how much a very finely executed minimum glass eyepiece can be. Rare to have things like this produced, and lucky when one can get hold of one. Not an every day eyepiece IMO...but certainly the best of the best when that level of performance can be capitalized upon in a telescope.

I agree that visually, looking at a target overall, a 20% jump in magnification is well, not worth it because it is just not that impressive. But when a scope is operating near a limit for the atmosphere on a target, then the 20% jump can become something significant. But to have it still perform on-par or slightly sharper while operating at this end of the spectrum is pointing out just how special that 5mm XO is!


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GeneT
Ely Kid
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Reged: 11/07/08

Loc: South Texas
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5631870 - 01/19/13 05:03 PM

Quote:

Good report, but in able to really tell the difference in an EP back and forth test, you need to keep both FL eyepieces the same. 254x and 305x are a lot different from each other. Cheers,




They are not the same, but neither are eyepieces of the same focal length that differ significantly in AFOV and eye relief. Comparing a 5 to a 5 would have been better. However, I am comfortable with what I saw and what I reported.


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
*****

Reged: 12/26/04

Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5632009 - 01/19/13 06:48 PM

Guess I will just throw my arms up in the air. One minute people on here say that comparing eyepieces of the same FL is a must, and the next minute they say it doesn't matter.

Oh well....I give up.



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Rick Woods
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Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5632044 - 01/19/13 07:05 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Good report, but in able to really tell the difference in an EP back and forth test, you need to keep both FL eyepieces the same. 254x and 305x are a lot different from each other. Cheers,




They are not the same, but neither are eyepieces of the same focal length that differ significantly in AFOV and eye relief. Comparing a 5 to a 5 would have been better. However, I am comfortable with what I saw and what I reported.




Hey - you compare what you have!
Congrats on a nice acquisition.


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herrointment
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Reged: 03/12/11

Loc: North of Hwy. 64
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5632062 - 01/19/13 07:15 PM

I'll take the Ely Kid at his word.

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BillP
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5632070 - 01/19/13 07:20 PM

Quote:

Guess I will just throw my arms up in the air. One minute people on here say that comparing eyepieces of the same FL is a must, and the next minute they say it doesn't matter.

Oh well....I give up.








"Important" if the goal is to try to just ferret out eyepiece-specific behaviors (long with using a flat-field scope with known aberrations). Not all that critical if you are either assessing "system" behavior or are making adjustments based on the know "system" biases. Why I always say ALL reviews and reports are very valuable.


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GeneT
Ely Kid
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Reged: 11/07/08

Loc: South Texas
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5632365 - 01/19/13 10:39 PM

Quote:

Good report, but in able to really tell the difference in an EP back and forth test, you need to keep both FL eyepieces the same.




I agree with the above. However, let me come at this again. What if someone wants an eyepiece in the range of 5 to 6mm focal length?
--The 100 degree AFOV Ethos comes in 4.7, 3.7, and 6;
--The 100 degree AFOV Explore Scientific comes in 5.5;
--The 82 degree AFOV Naglers come in 5mm;
--The 82 degree AFOV Explore Scientific comes in 4.7 and 6.7;
--The 72 degree AFOV Delos comes in 3.5, 4.5 and 6;
--The 72 degree AFOV Pentax comes in 3.5 and 5.
When you line all these up, you will have a difficult time lining up all these eyepiece lines in 5's and 6's. It would be nice if they did line up in nice exact columns for each; but, they don't. In fact, the variances in focal lengths are all over the place.

Now, what if you want to compare the above product lines with two of the finest eyepieces ever made--the 5mm Pentax XO and the 6mm ZAO? Again, the columns don't line up nicely into 5's and 6's. What if you are luck and find a good used 5mm Pentax XO and a good used 6mm ZAO? What if either would fit in an acceptable range for your telescope in a high power eyepiece? Now, you test both. You look for subtle differences in planetary detail and stellar points. Remember, one is a 5 and one is a 6mm focal length eyepiece. You can't test a 6 XO against the 6 ZAO and you can't test a 5 ZAO against a 5 XO. All you can do is test a 5XO against a 6 ZAO.

Please note that you now are back exactly in the same place where I originally posted. I compared a 5XO against a 6 Delos.

Of course your points about differences in magnification as it relates to contrast and so on are correct. However, the fact is we consumers often have to make these inexact comparisons between eye piece types. I am sure you have a trained eye. I believe I do also. Over the years I have learned to trust what I see. I agree it would have been nice to have lined up two 5's and two 6's and made a direct comparision. However, it can't be done. I believe what my eye showed me and I am comfortable in drawing the conclusions I did in my original post.

The bottom line here is that both the 5mm Pentax XO and the 6mm Delos are superb eyepieces. The CN'rs who turned me on to the 5XO did me a great favor. I now own one of the best one or two eyepieces ever made in this focal length range.

On a related note, I was seriously thinking of purchasing a 13mm Ethos. I have a 12mm Nagler. I don't know if TeleVue used to make a 13mm Nagler, but if they did, they no longer do. Therefore, I had to compare my 12mm Nagler against a 13mm Ethos that a friend owned. Again, the focal lengths did not line up. I had to draw conclusions with these eyepieces. I decided that the main issue for me was the 17 degrees of eye relief of the Nagler vs. the 15 of the Ethos. I could get all of the field of view in the Nagler while wearing glasses where I could not with the Ethos. I liked the 'whiter' tones of the Ethos better than the warmer tones of the Nagler. However, I also did not feel that the 100 AFOV suited my viewing needs compared to the 82 of the Nagler. Therefore, I stuck with the Nagler and did not upgrade to the Ethos.

I would be interested in someone comparing a 6 ZAO with a 6 Delos. Has anyone compared a 6 ZAO with a 5 XO? (With all the caveats that we have to remember that they are of differing focal lengths.)


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russell23
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Reged: 05/31/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5632422 - 01/19/13 11:17 PM

Quote:

Overblown? Hardly.

@ 254x, Jupiter may show sharp detail, and @ 305x you may NOT see the same sharp detail, or you may. It all depends on the sky and conditions. There is quite a difference at these two magnifications on any given night.




But sky conditions are a different issue. You don't draw conclusions about any eyepiece that seeing conditions won't allow you to test. You wait until you have seeing conditions that allow both eyepieces being compared to be fairly tested. The day my 2x Explore scientific barlow arrived the seeing conditions were so horrid I couldn't even get a sharp focus at 53x ... and I'm still waiting to test that barlow because I haven't had clear skies since.

You can absolutely compare eyepieces of different focal length. The limitations should be pointed out where the focal length difference might be relevant. For example, the 5mm XO would be expected to give a blacker sky background than the 6mm Delos - just based upon exit pupil. If you can see more finely resolved details in the 5mm XO as compared to the 6mm Delos you can note that the increased detectability of details can possibly be attributed to the higher magnification provided by the 5mm eyepiece. But that doesn't change the fact that you saw more details in the 5mm eyepiece than the 6mm eyepiece.

Quote:

I used to think the same thing, but a REAL COMPARO can only be done on two diff eyepieces at the same magnification, or VERY CLOSE to it.

Cheers,




I'm not sure why identical focal lengths are necessary for a report to be a "real comparo"? Why not identical AFOV too then? Why not identical eye relief? Why not identical coatings?

"or Very close to it"? What is very close? I think 5mm vs. 6mm is very close. If you put an eyepiece into a telescope and told an observer that it is either a 5mm giving 305x or a 6mm giving 254x, do you really think that people would correctly identify the magnification more than ~50-60% of the time? I've had times in which I've been switching back and forth with different eyepieces w/barlows and all of the sudden realized that I'm looking at something at 160x instead of the 120x I thought I had in (~30% magnification difference).

Will you be able to detect differences resulting directly from using a 5mm vs. a 6mm eyepiece? Absolutely. But that doesn't mean those differences are so extreme that comparing a 5mm to a 6mm does not constitute a "real comparo".

Dave


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russell23
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Reged: 05/31/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: BillP]
      #5632435 - 01/19/13 11:29 PM

Quote:

Quote:

An eyepiece is a package of characteristics and focal length is just one of those characteristics. I don't think a 20% magnification difference is all that significant. We don't see a large demand on the market for 1.20x barlows.

Dave




Dave, very true that folks don't generally demand 1.2x Barlows! IMO, the magnification difference can be important depending on the circumstances.

In the case of the OPs scope, a 24mm vs a 26mm eyepiece will generate little difference in magnification (61x vs 66x). The brightness though will be 17% brighter in the 26mm due to the larger exit pupil. 17%, while sounding like a lot, visually is noticeable but not significant..so not a WoW 17% brighter. However, it will well explain why fainter or adverted vision stars might seem more easily seen. Switch to an 6mm vs 5mm in same scope and now the brightness difference is to have a 44% brighter image in the 6mm and 50x less magnification (significant when potentially working at near the top magnification an atmosphere may be allowing). So yes, while the magnification difference may be just 20%, the brightness difference is a whopping 44%. And with that extra brightness the image will appear more contrasty visually as well in the 6mm. At higher magnifications, these differences can be more significant because of dwindling brightness and contrast, whereas at lower magnifications a similar difference might not show quite so dramatically.

However, like you, I do not think it is a problem when evaluating eyepieces of different focal lengths...even 20% different because the report will still tell a story. Plus, any evaluation using a scope under a particular location's skys is really a system-test and not just an eyepiece test. So one needs to work in the aspects of the system to come away with how significant any noted differences might be.

Working at the high magnifications of the OP where exit pupils are approaching 1mm, to take away a result that the eyepiece pushing 50x more magnification and showing an image that is 44% less bright, to visually appear slightly sharper is actually saying quite a bit about that 5mm eyepiece! Phenomenal to pull off that kind of subjective result when the math is telling us what is happening between the two different exit pupils being generated. Just another report IMO that characterizes how that little 5XO was quite ahead of its time in 2003 and how it is still ahead of the current time. A fantastic eyepiece. It takes nothing away from the Delos which is phenomenal in other ways. But it does highlight just how much a very finely executed minimum glass eyepiece can be. Rare to have things like this produced, and lucky when one can get hold of one. Not an every day eyepiece IMO...but certainly the best of the best when that level of performance can be capitalized upon in a telescope.

I agree that visually, looking at a target overall, a 20% jump in magnification is well, not worth it because it is just not that impressive. But when a scope is operating near a limit for the atmosphere on a target, then the 20% jump can become something significant. But to have it still perform on-par or slightly sharper while operating at this end of the spectrum is pointing out just how special that 5mm XO is!




I agree with everything you said Bill. I've always felt that smaller magnification jumps make more sense at higher magnifications than at lower magnifications. Like I said to Mark - the seeing conditions have to be removed as a factor before you should even be making a comparison between the 5mm and 6mm eyepiece. I think GeneT did that.

It is a good point you make that the brightness will be a larger factor than the magnification. So the focal ratio of the scope will be a factor in play as well.

I just hate to see us become so restrictive in what constitutes a valid comparison that people become afraid to report on comparisons they've made that a lot of people might find useful - even given limitations potentially introduced by slight differences in eyepiece focal length. For the example in this thread it is quite clear that for a person that likes planetary observations, but also would prefer more viewing comfort - the 6mm Delos seems to do quite well up against the 5mm XO and for some people that might sway them to go with the 6mm Delos. Others might be impressed by the fact that despite the disadvantages the XO faces, it still seemed to slightly outperform the 6mm Delos - and so those people might opt for the 5mm XO. If we're discouraged from making such comparisons then we don't get the benefit of such information to guide our decisions.

Dave


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russell23
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5632444 - 01/19/13 11:38 PM

Quote:

Guess I will just throw my arms up in the air. One minute people on here say that comparing eyepieces of the same FL is a must, and the next minute they say it doesn't matter.

Oh well....I give up.






I'm sure it won't take too long for someone else to come along and support you that the "FL must be the same" approach is the most valid approach. I disagree for reasons I've given, but that doesn't mean that you are wrong to prefer that requirement. It is just another example of the YMMV that underlies much of what gets discussed here on CN.

For my part, if I see "conventional wisdom" that I think has gotten to the point that nobody even thinks to question it anymore, then I question it if I think the conventional wisdom has become detrimentally restrictive. I happen to think many of these "requirements" that discourage people from wanting to share their reviews and observations are detrimental.



Dave


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Mike B
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: russell23]
      #5632471 - 01/20/13 12:03 AM

Quote:

I happen to think many of these "requirements" that discourage people from wanting to share their reviews and observations are detrimental.




Agreed. And i suspect that's the frustration Mark is alluding to... i think we've ALL seen someone's comparo get critiqued rather bluntly because of some perceived failure to match conventional wisdom, when in fact there was much good to be derived... possibly even including the questioning of said "wisdom".

On EP focal lengths & comparo's- i've got a goodie for ya:
I once stuck a 9.4mm Speers-Waler in my BVer, with a Pentax 10.5mm XL in the adjacent holder; the views actually MERGED! Quite nicely, too. Had me stumped, but good!

So, was the 10.5mm not really, exactly 10.5mm?... or was the 9.4mm not really, precisely 9.4mm?

What i went on to perceive, tho, was that star groupings near the FoV centers merged well, whereas star groupings in the periphery were slightly off. My eye was accommodating & forcing the "merge" when the angular distance diff was small enough... but when the FoV stretched out far enough, the angular distance diff between, due to the slight magnification diff, exceeded my eyes' accommodation abilities.

Yet my eye's own ability to override a ~10% magnification difference remains. For reference, the mags involved that night would've been ~169x and ~189x, with a 10" SCT. So, i'm wondering what ELSE my eyes might be capable of "overriding" without my being aware?


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GeneT
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike B]
      #5633508 - 01/20/13 04:27 PM

Quote:

I once stuck a 9.4mm Speers-Waler in my BVer, with a Pentax 10.5mm XL in the adjacent holder; the views actually MERGED! Quite nicely, too. Had me stumped, but good!




Gueeze. I would never have thought of doing that. Very interesting!


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GeneT
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: russell23]
      #5633534 - 01/20/13 04:42 PM

Quote:

I'm sure it won't take too long for someone else to come along and support you that the "FL must be the same" approach is the most valid approach.




There are times when the choice of eyepieces for comparision do not match up with exact focal lengths. For example, what if someone was trying to decide between some Pentax XW's or Delos eyepieces? Both make a 10mm for a direct comparison. However Delos than goes to an 8 and a 6. Pentax XW goes to a 7 from the 10. Delos makes a 4.5 and Pentax XW a 5--pretty close. However, how does one compare the Pentax 7? Do you compare it to the Delos 6, or 8? In any case, there is no way to compare these similar eyepieces directly against the criteria of matching exact focal lengths. And in this and other cases, I believe there still can be dome valid comparisons made when trying to determine which eyepiece(s) to buy even when one of the criteria does not exactly match.


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mountain monk
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5633669 - 01/20/13 05:56 PM

Me too. Thanks for your review.

Dark skies.

Jack


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ausastronomerModerator
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: John K]
      #5633693 - 01/20/13 06:06 PM

Quote:

I am happy with my 6mm Delos for my planetary work.I don't feel any short comings with it.It is better than my previous Pentax 5XW.IMHO but that may have been due to FL and seeing.:-)




I have no doubt seeing and thermal equilibrium factors are what contributed to the perceived difference in performance between the 5mm Pentax XW and the 6mm Delos. If 6mm is a better more frequently useable focal length for your situation then you cannot go past the 6mm Delos, it is excellent. At the shorter focal lengths and smaller exit pupils a 1mm difference in focal length can make a huge difference. At the longer focal lengths it doesn't matter much, if at all.

I have a 5mm Pentax XW, a 6mm Delos and a 7mm Pentax XW and I am yet to see any performance difference in any criteria where I feel the 6mm Delos has an edge over either of the other two eyepieces. In fact the XW's outpoint the DELOS in some performance criteria, which are not critical to me. What happens quite frequently is that the 6mm DELOS will hold up under the conditions in my 10"/F5 scope and the 5mm Pentax XW will not. That's the conditions, not the eyepiece. When conditions are good enough for both eyepieces to deliver their best, there is nothing between them.

I have also used the 5mm Pentax XO on many occasions and confirm that it marginally outpoints the 5mm Pentax XW, under the very best observing conditions, in a premium telescope. However, I came to the conclusion that on the basis the performance gain was very marginal and the Pentax XW was infinitely more comfortable to use for long observing sessions, there was no place in my eyepiece case for a 5mm Pentax XO. In fact after a 2 hour lunar / planetary observing I have no doubt I am seeing more in the 5mm Pentax XW, or 6mm Delos, than I would be seeing in a 5mm Pentax XO due to eye fatigue and strain.

Cheers


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GeneT
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: ausastronomer]
      #5633708 - 01/20/13 06:13 PM

Quote:

I have also used the 5mm Pentax XO on many occasions and confirm that it marginally outpoints the 5mm Pentax XW, under the very best observing conditions, in a premium telescope. However, I came to the conclusion that on the basis the performance gain was very marginal and the Pentax XW was infinitely more comfortable to use for long observing sessions, there was no place in my eyepiece case for a 5mm Pentax XO. In fact after a 2 hour lunar / planetary observing I have no doubt I am seeing more in the 5mm Pentax XW, or 6mm Delos, than I would be seeing in a 5mm Pentax XO due to eye fatigue and strain.




Excellent points!


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russell23
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike B]
      #5633780 - 01/20/13 06:57 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I happen to think many of these "requirements" that discourage people from wanting to share their reviews and observations are detrimental.




Agreed. And i suspect that's the frustration Mark is alluding to... i think we've ALL seen someone's comparo get critiqued rather bluntly because of some perceived failure to match conventional wisdom, when in fact there was much good to be derived... possibly even including the questioning of said "wisdom".




Yes -- don't ever suggest one eyepiece has better contrast than another or you will be forced to defend your claim against a long list of other possible explanations besides the eyepiece actually having better contrast.

Quote:

On EP focal lengths & comparo's- i've got a goodie for ya:
I once stuck a 9.4mm Speers-Waler in my BVer, with a Pentax 10.5mm XL in the adjacent holder; the views actually MERGED! Quite nicely, too. Had me stumped, but good!

So, was the 10.5mm not really, exactly 10.5mm?... or was the 9.4mm not really, precisely 9.4mm?

What i went on to perceive, tho, was that star groupings near the FoV centers merged well, whereas star groupings in the periphery were slightly off. My eye was accommodating & forcing the "merge" when the angular distance diff was small enough... but when the FoV stretched out far enough, the angular distance diff between, due to the slight magnification diff, exceeded my eyes' accommodation abilities.




That is a fascinating example.

Quote:

Yet my eye's own ability to override a ~10% magnification difference remains. For reference, the mags involved that night would've been ~169x and ~189x, with a 10" SCT. So, i'm wondering what ELSE my eyes might be capable of "overriding" without my being aware?





That's why there should be more flexibility tolerated in eyepiece comparisons.

Dave


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5634263 - 01/21/13 01:15 AM

Quote:

Quote:

I have also used the 5mm Pentax XO on many occasions and confirm that it marginally outpoints the 5mm Pentax XW, under the very best observing conditions, in a premium telescope. However, I came to the conclusion that on the basis the performance gain was very marginal and the Pentax XW was infinitely more comfortable to use for long observing sessions, there was no place in my eyepiece case for a 5mm Pentax XO. In fact after a 2 hour lunar / planetary observing I have no doubt I am seeing more in the 5mm Pentax XW, or 6mm Delos, than I would be seeing in a 5mm Pentax XO due to eye fatigue and strain.




Excellent points!



I just replaced my 5mm Pentax XO with a 4.7mm Ethos for exactly the same reasons. I think the Ethos equals the views in any of my orthos and its hard to beat the 110 deg views.
Rex


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5634590 - 01/21/13 09:45 AM

Gene,

Great comparo. So I guess you won't be giving up your XO 5 anytime soon? Same here. I have the XO 5 and 2.5. I don't see them leaving me in the foreseeable future.

I haven't done a direct comparison between the XO's and other 5 or 2.5mm eyepieces. But from my direct observations of Jupiter and double stars, I'm confident that the XO's are excellent planet and double stars eyepieces.

So far I've been most impressed with the XO's performance on double stars, even though I'm not really a double star enthusiast. According to my own personal interests, doubles are below DSO, planets and the Moon. That's just the way it is. But since seeing the Pup star recently for the first time - and that was through the XO's - my interests might shift more toward the doubles.

Quote:

[From Gene's comparo:] Sirus was up, so I put both eyepieces on this gem. Again, both eyepieces performed superbly. The 5XO is going to make a nice double star eyepiece.




I wish you would have gone into more detail in this comparison of the two eyepieces on Sirius. So you did see the Pup through both the Delos 6 and the XO 5? How did the view look in each eyepiece?

In my 10" f/4.8 Dob, I could not tease out the Pup with a BGO 7 (171x) or 6mm (200x). The seeing and transparency that night were at least 4/5. Maybe there was too much scatter in the BGO's or the spider spikes were too prominent for those magnifications. In any case, as soon as I put in the XO 5 (235x), the Pup star was obvious. A good, clean split. But Sirius B was a beautiful sight in the XO 2.5: a crystal clear image at 456x, 47x per inch! The Pup was a sharp, light-steel-blue point between two sparkling spikes of Sirius.

Caught the Pup for the First Time

For my eyes, I did not find either XO uncomfortable. Yes, they have short eye relief. So I had to take off my glasses to view through them. No big deal. That's why I keep my glasses on strings. Also, the relatively narrow 44 degree AFOV and high power did not bother me. My Dob does not have tracking, but I can nudge with the best of them. That's no problem. My mount is well balanced and has smooth motion. The superb view was worth any of these minor inconveniences.

No, I don't think I'll be giving up these XO's anytime soon, either. I believe there will always be a place in my equipment case for both XO's!

Mike


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5634650 - 01/21/13 10:26 AM

But will I get a Delos 6?

Probably not. There is the Instajust eyeguard - or whatever TeleVue is calling it now - on the Delos. Judging from recent experience with my used Radian 4, I don't think I'd like that feature on the Delos. So far, for me, the Instajust is more of a nuisance than short eye relief would be. Besides, the Delos - as usual for TeleVue - are priced higher than I want to pay. Maybe I'll go for a used one sometime.

In the meantime I am considering an XW 5. Unfortunately, as soon as I started thinking about a specific used eyepiece, there were none to be had. But even new, they are available at quite a savings off the price of a new Delos 6.

Now since I already have an XO 5, why would I bother with an XW 5? Is the eye relief and narrow field of the XO a pain to me? No, not at all - and especially not for the views I receive. The XW 5 would be mostly for deep sky, not planets or doubles. The wider field and high transmission of the XW's are great for DSO.

Mike


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turtle86
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: tomcody]
      #5634776 - 01/21/13 11:42 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

I have also used the 5mm Pentax XO on many occasions and confirm that it marginally outpoints the 5mm Pentax XW, under the very best observing conditions, in a premium telescope. However, I came to the conclusion that on the basis the performance gain was very marginal and the Pentax XW was infinitely more comfortable to use for long observing sessions, there was no place in my eyepiece case for a 5mm Pentax XO. In fact after a 2 hour lunar / planetary observing I have no doubt I am seeing more in the 5mm Pentax XW, or 6mm Delos, than I would be seeing in a 5mm Pentax XO due to eye fatigue and strain.




Excellent points!



I just replaced my 5mm Pentax XO with a 4.7mm Ethos for exactly the same reasons. I think the Ethos equals the views in any of my orthos and its hard to beat the 110 deg views.
Rex




Same here. I briefly owned a Pentax 5XO but after putting it head to head with the 4.7 Ethos over a few nights I came to the conclusion that for my viewing preferences, the ergonomic advantages of the Ethos greatly outweighed any advantages the 5XO might've had, with the result I was actually seeing more with the 4.7 than the 5XO, especially over extended periods of time. Just as I want comfortable shoes when I go on long hikes, I've come to find that I want comfortable eyepieces for long observing sessions. I suspect that a lot of folks would also find something like the Pentax 5XW a lot easier on the eyes than the XO as well. The 5XO is a great, great eyepiece, just not my cup of tea.


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5634818 - 01/21/13 12:08 PM

For planets and double stars, finer detail and less scatter are much more comfortable to my eyes than longer eye relief and a wider field. For deep sky objects, I want wider field and higher light transmission. I know that many planet, double star, and deep sky enthusiasts have come to the same conclusions.

My feet merely have to get me from point A to point B and back in relative comfort. My eyes have to perform much more delicate work along the way. YMMV. To each their own.


Mike


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Mike Foreman
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5634934 - 01/21/13 01:05 PM

Quote:

But will I get a Delos 6?

Probably not. There is the Instajust eyeguard - or whatever TeleVue is calling it now - on the Delos.




They are not the same.

The Delos lock in very securely with a collet type grip and do not jump like the instajust do.
First time I had an Instajust slide when I removed a Radian from the eyepiece holder I nearly had a heart atack.

Never say never untill you actually try it.


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Scanning4Comets
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike Foreman]
      #5635048 - 01/21/13 02:09 PM

Yep,

You're right Mike F. Two completely different beasts altogether. The Radian just shifts up or down. In the Delos you have two parts. The bottom half you hold and you unscrew the top half and when you find the right relief, you "lock 'em in".

Cheers,


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike Foreman]
      #5635054 - 01/21/13 02:14 PM

Mike F,

I know they are not the same. But I've also read that the Delos adjustment cup can be a hastle to use as well. Twist up or down and then lock. Why should a lock even be necessary if the cup is well designed? My XW's adjust easily and stay put without a lock. Sometimes these companies try so hard to make things "easier" for the consumer they wind up making them more difficult. Upgrades of some operating systems come immediately to mind.

I'm not about to try everything that comes along. I've heard that siren song before. It ignores the fact that most human knowledge is indirect and all human time is finite. I accept those limitations.

But this doesn't mean I won't pick up a used Delos some day at a decent price.


Mike


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Scanning4Comets
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5635077 - 01/21/13 02:22 PM

Quote:

I know they are not the same. But I've also read that the Delos adjustment cup can be a hastle to use as well. Twist up or down and then lock. Why should a lock even be necessary if the cup is well designed? My XW's adjust fine and stay put without a lock. Sometimes these companies try so hard to make things "easier" for the consumer they wind up making them more difficult. Upgrades of some operating systems come immediately to mind.

I'm not about to try everything that comes along. I've heard that siren song before. It ignores the fact that most human knowledge is indirect and all human time is finite. I accept those limitations.

But this doesn't mean I won't pick up a used Delos some day at a decent price.

Mike




You need to lock it in place because there are two halves to the system Mike. Some actually find the Delos locking system easier to use than the Pentax XW. Either way, I owned BOTH at the same time and I set them both up and left them... I actually leave my XW eye cups all of the way in the "down" position. The only reason you may need to move either eye cup would be for someone who needs glasses to observe. Personally I wouldn't use either one for "pulic" viewing because people stick their fingers everywhere. "Is this where I look?", putting their fingers right on the top lens.....LOL! Meh, I don't even do public viewing anyways.

Mike, It seems as though YOU ARE trying almost everything that comes along, LOL! One good look at your posts or sigline shows you are trying almost everything that everybody seems to be talking about these days. I guess the Delos is not one of them at the moment haha.

Just kiddin' broski. Try not to get too agitated, after all, this IS a fun place to be in "kookoo eyepiece" land.


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5635094 - 01/21/13 02:30 PM

You should see obvious holes in my sig. No Naglers, no Ethos, no Delos. There is a definite pattern here. The reason for the pattern should be obvious also, as well as the few exceptions.


Mike


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5635109 - 01/21/13 02:40 PM

Yes, I set the XW's eyecups all the way down, too, and leave them that way. The XW's have 20mm of eye relief, so there is no problem for me to leave my glasses on when I observe.

Mike


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RAKing
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5635153 - 01/21/13 02:58 PM

Quote:


On a related note, I was seriously thinking of purchasing a 13mm Ethos. I have a 12mm Nagler. I don't know if TeleVue used to make a 13mm Nagler, but if they did, they no longer do. Therefore, I had to compare my 12mm Nagler against a 13mm Ethos that a friend owned. Again, the focal lengths did not line up. I had to draw conclusions with these eyepieces. I decided that the main issue for me was the 17 degrees of eye relief of the Nagler vs. the 15 of the Ethos. I could get all of the field of view in the Nagler while wearing glasses where I could not with the Ethos. I liked the 'whiter' tones of the Ethos better than the warmer tones of the Nagler. However, I also did not feel that the 100 AFOV suited my viewing needs compared to the 82 of the Nagler. Therefore, I stuck with the Nagler and did not upgrade to the Ethos.

I would be interested in someone comparing a 6 ZAO with a 6 Delos. Has anyone compared a 6 ZAO with a 5 XO? (With all the caveats that we have to remember that they are of differing focal lengths.)




Gene,

Televue still makes a 13mm Nagler - it's one of the little Type 6 eyepieces and works very well if you need to save weight or money.

Yes, I have compared my 6mm ZAO-II against the 5mm XO. I also compared the XO with a Barlowed 10mm ZAO-II and with my 5mm A-P SPL. All of these eyepieces are superb and I enjoy the views out of every one. But in the long run, I let my XO go to someone who wanted to use it and I stayed with the eyepieces that were more comfortable for me to use.

Having said all that, I also use a 5mm Pentax XW and a 6mm Delos for public outreach. These eyepieces are easier for the public to use and still put up great views.

I enjoyed your report. I don't care if these are vastly different eyepieces - it's still fun and educational to read the opinion of someone I admire.

Ron


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ibase
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5635189 - 01/21/13 03:16 PM

Quote:


I know they are not the same. But I've also read that the Delos adjustment cup can be a hastle to use as well. Twist up or down and then lock. Why should a lock even be necessary if the cup is well designed? My XW's adjust easily and stay put without a lock. Sometimes these companies try so hard to make things "easier" for the consumer they wind up making them more difficult. Upgrades of some operating systems come immediately to mind.

I'm not about to try everything that comes along. I've heard that siren song before. It ignores the fact that most human knowledge is indirect and all human time is finite. I accept those limitations.

But this doesn't mean I won't pick up a used Delos some day at a decent price.






Mike, do pick up a Delos one of these days to try out, you might take a liking to it, no hassle at all really in using its eyecup. In the meantime we can race putting the eyecups all the way up for your Pentax XW vs my Delos 6mm (which I like very much). The Delos would finish in a jiffy, and I'll have time to drink coffee as you twist the Pentax eyecup around and around and around.. (you get the idea )

Best,


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walt99
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5635293 - 01/21/13 04:20 PM

I have a similar dilemma . I am lucky to have a Pentax 5.1 XO , a 5mm Supermono and a Nagler 3 to 6 mm zoom. In my FS 128 the Supermono seems to give the best color and definition , followed by the Pentax and the Nagler which is sharp but quite monochrome .

The NAgler is the most convienient and has the widest field for my undriven mount . The field of the Supermono is only 30 degrees and the Pentax is in the middle .

It's nice to have different flavors to choose from, but the most memorable view I've had of Jupiter was with the 5mm Supermono when the planet was laced with shades of pastel colors I'd never seen before . . .


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BillP
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: walt99]
      #5635306 - 01/21/13 04:31 PM

Quote:

...the most memorable view I've had of Jupiter was with the 5mm Supermono when the planet was laced with shades of pastel colors I'd never seen before . . .




Most people look for more details or better contrast with these premium eyepieces, and forget completely about the unparalleled color renditions they provide!! Glad you caught the colors...beautiful!!


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GeneT
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: RAKing]
      #5635461 - 01/21/13 06:05 PM

Quote:

Yes, I have compared my 6mm ZAO-II against the 5mm XO.




Ron,
I would be interested in what you noticed while comparing these two fine eyepieces.
Gene


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5635473 - 01/21/13 06:13 PM

Inappropriate content deleted by moderator

Edited by ausastronomer (01/21/13 06:44 PM)


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junomike
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Kon Dealer]
      #5635483 - 01/21/13 06:18 PM

People who are curious about the answer and know they will never have the goods to compare!



Mike


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RAKing
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5635511 - 01/21/13 06:36 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Yes, I have compared my 6mm ZAO-II against the 5mm XO.




Ron,
I would be interested in what you noticed while comparing these two fine eyepieces.
Gene




Gene,

As I mentioned, both of these are superb eyepieces. But I have to be honest - I enjoyed the 6mm ZAO-II more than the 5mm XO.

I have a TEC 140 refractor and 5mm can be a stretch sometimes in our Northern Virginia humidity. The 6mm hits at 163x with just under 1mm exit pupil and this focal length hits the sweet spot for much of my double star viewing.

Both eyepieces showed great color on Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune when I had them at Sky Meadows SP last fall.

The main reason I finally let the XO go was comfort. The XO's eye lens is recessed slightly. Pentax has what seems like a thin rubber cap on top and my eyelash dragged across it when I blinked. I didn't have this problem with my other orthos (or the SPL series) and just left the XO in the display case for a year or so. After Pentax stopped production, I felt like someone who could enjoy the XO should have it.

BTW - I picked up an 8mm Delos last fall and was amazed at how clean and crisp it was, so I also picked up a 6mm Delos, too. Now I have a ZAO-II, A-P SPL, Radian, and Delos in the 6mm focal length and I'm quite happy with all these choices.

Cheers,

Ron


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: RAKing]
      #5635892 - 01/21/13 10:55 PM

Quote:

I enjoyed the 6mm ZAO-II more than the 5mm XO.




Ron,
Following several PM's and a lot of research, many people whose judgement I respect rated the 5XO and the ZAO about equal. They are both the top of the line, with a few others close behind. I was very happy that I landed a 5XO. I received a PM offering to sell me a ZAO. I will pass because I only need one premimum eyepiece. I will probably view with my 6 Delos much more than with my 5XO. However, for special situations, I will have it in the line up. I thought about buying a 4.5 or 3.5 Delos. I decided not to. I rarely need a 4. I already have a 4mm Radian for those rare situations.

Thanks for your input!
Gene


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5636267 - 01/22/13 06:10 AM

Quote:

Quote:

I enjoyed the 6mm ZAO-II more than the 5mm XO.




Ron,
Following several PM's and a lot of research, many people whose judgement I respect rated the 5XO and the ZAO about equal. They are both the top of the line, with a few others close behind. I was very happy that I landed a 5XO. I received a PM offering to sell me a ZAO. I will pass because I only need one premimum eyepiece. I will probably view with my 6 Delos much more than with my 5XO. However, for special situations, I will have it in the line up. I thought about buying a 4.5 or 3.5 Delos. I decided not to. I rarely need a 4. I already have a 4mm Radian for those rare situations.

Thanks for your input!
Gene




Gene,

After my experience with the 8 and 6mm Delos, I also toyed with the idea of trying the 4.5. I'm still thinking..............

Enjoy your XO - it's a great eyepiece. I have to use Lumigan eye drops to prevent glaucoma and one of the side effects is longer eyelashes. (They also market this stuff as "Latisse" on the cosmetic side.) The longer eyelashes just didn't work for me with the XO, but the optics are still wonderful!

Cheers,

Ron


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: RAKing]
      #5636282 - 01/22/13 06:23 AM

The amount of space devoted to discussion of high end/premium- read "expensive" kit never ceases to amaze me.

Just how many of you can afford this stuff?
I certainly can't

Can we have some discussions on kit that is accessible to most- i.e in the $50-$150 range?
And it would be nice if such a discussion was not promptly "highjacked" by someone saying "but of course what you really want is a blah, blah, blah- the last 1% of the F.O.V. really makes a difference and it is a snip at $350!


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Kon Dealer]
      #5636305 - 01/22/13 06:59 AM

Yes, indeed. You can start your own thread. This one, though, is concerned with a comparison of the 6mm Delos and the 5mm XO.

Mike


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5637137 - 01/22/13 03:15 PM

Quote:

And it would be nice if such a discussion was not promptly "highjacked" by someone...




Aha... so this would then be a reverse-hijack?... or maybe a "lowjack"?

Quote:

You can start your own thread.



And indeed, he has. I s'pose if one wanted to hear *NO* input from the deep end of the pond, one could initiate such a thread with specific parameters accordingly.

Yet in actuality, these discussions tend to be rather fluid, and as such can be quite helpful. Aspects outside any ONE person's considerations can, many times, be very illuminating... and can open doors that might otherwise have remained closed.

Not just on price, either! This could pertain to wideness of field, amount of glass / number of "elements", tone of transmission, copy of design, market availability, etc., etc.

As a recent example, in the past i've owned & used both FLs of Pentax 'XF' design, and was generally pleased with their performance... but they had always been fairly costly, which tended to dissuade me from attempting a binoviewer pair of them. Then, just recently, it was mentioned in a thread discussing the newer Paradigm Dual ED eyepieces that their design was apparently near-identical to the highly regarded Pentax XF's!

Had some poster not mentioned this, due to the rather large price differential & not wanting to "hijack" anything, i NEVER would've learned of this aspect, and might miss out on the opportunity to even consider the Paradigm EPs!

Personally, i would NOT wish to sculpt these forum discussions too close to the bone. Yes, blatant hijacking can be annoying, but honest discussion i find almost always helpful. And besides, i suspect most folks posting are really trying to be helpful; the true hijackers are few & far between... and tend to eventually leave CN because they get "moderated", which takes the fun out of their fun.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike B]
      #5637353 - 01/22/13 05:07 PM

I welcome contrary opinions, fresh insights, striking analogies, useful comparisons, and even somewhat OT discussions. But when someone makes a point to complain about the topic of a thread by posting within that thread, and asks why there are not more threads with an opposing vewpoint ... well, the obvious solution is to get out of that thread and start your own! Eh ... Go figure.


Mike


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5637384 - 01/22/13 05:20 PM

Quote:

I wish you would have gone into more detail in this comparison of the two eyepieces on Sirius. So you did see the Pup through both the Delos 6 and the XO 5? How did the view look in each eyepiece?




That comparison will be made, but for another day (night. ) Jupiter was high up and clear of roof tops, but Sirus was a little low on the horizon. The seeing conditions were 'good.' I did not see the pup. My bet is that the 5XO will show the companion star a little better. We'll see.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5637396 - 01/22/13 05:26 PM

Quote:

Probably not. There is the Instajust eyeguard - or whatever TeleVue is calling it now - on the Delos. Judging from recent experience with my used Radian 4, I don't think I'd like that feature on the Delos.




I owned both Radians and Delos eyepieces. The 'adjustable height' system is totally different than the Radian 'instant adjust.' The Delos works quite nicely.I recommend that you try out a Delos for your self to see if you agree.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: RAKing]
      #5637407 - 01/22/13 05:31 PM

Quote:

Gene,

Televue still makes a 13mm Nagler - it's one of the little Type 6 eyepieces and works very well if you need to save weight or money.




You are correct. I missed them on these web sites that I checked. You too will one day be old.

http://www.televue.com/engine/TV3b_page.asp?id=21

http://www.astronomics.com/tele-vue-nagler-eyepieces_c86.aspx


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5637411 - 01/22/13 05:33 PM

Quote:

I've come to find that I want comfortable eyepieces for long observing sessions. I suspect that a lot of folks would also find something like the Pentax 5XW a lot easier on the eyes than the XO as well. The 5XO is a great, great eyepiece, just not my cup of tea.




Also excellent points! That is why a lot of people bought Radians, Pentax XW's and now Delos eyepieces.


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GeneT
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Kon Dealer]
      #5637444 - 01/22/13 05:51 PM

Quote:

The amount of space devoted to discussion of high end/premium- read "expensive" kit never ceases to amaze me.
Just how many of you can afford this stuff? I certainly can't Can we have some discussions on kit that is accessible to most- i.e in the $50-$150 range?
And it would be nice if such a discussion was not promptly "highjacked" by someone saying "but of course what you really want is a blah, blah, blah- the last 1% of the F.O.V. really makes a difference and it is a snip at $350!




A lot of people are interested in this topic; more than 1,600 posts as of Jan. 22; a lot are not. I am not offended that you are not. Why don't you start a new post on the topic(s) you are interested in, or want covered? Believe, me people will join in.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Mike B]
      #5637453 - 01/22/13 05:56 PM

Quote:

Personally, i would NOT wish to sculpt these forum discussions too close to the bone. Yes, blatant hijacking can be annoying, but honest discussion i find almost always helpful. And besides, i suspect most folks posting are really trying to be helpful; the true hijackers are few & far between... and tend to eventually leave CN because they get "moderated", which takes the fun out of their fun.




My thoughts exactly!


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5637460 - 01/22/13 05:57 PM



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turtle86
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5637976 - 01/22/13 11:10 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I've come to find that I want comfortable eyepieces for long observing sessions. I suspect that a lot of folks would also find something like the Pentax 5XW a lot easier on the eyes than the XO as well. The 5XO is a great, great eyepiece, just not my cup of tea.




Also excellent points! That is why a lot of people bought Radians, Pentax XW's and now Delos eyepieces.




Thanks, Gene! I must say that I'm very intrigued by the 6mm Delos after reading your review. I have a 6mm Ethos and someday hope to compare it to the Delos. Some of the comments I'd read suggest that the Delos has slightly better light transmission than the Ethos, which would help with really faint fuzzies. I have seen the Pup with the 6mm Ethos in my scope so I bet you'll have no trouble bagging it with either your XO or Delos when the time comes.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5638074 - 01/23/13 12:03 AM

Here's another review of the Delos 6 vs Ethos:

New Televue 6mm Delos **First Impression**

Best,


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: ibase]
      #5638365 - 01/23/13 07:58 AM

I would value that review as worth about what it costs you to read it.

The comment about the 6mm Delos simply outperforming the 7mm Pentax XW lost me. I own both eyepieces and will continue to own both as I have a need for both focal lengths. They are both excellent. See my earlier comment in a previous post re these 2 eyepieces.

Cheers


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5638525 - 01/23/13 09:50 AM

There's a 5 XO in CNC for best offer. I'll pass. It would be excellent in my WO ZS-110 and Lunt 60. My cats not so much. David

Edited by dscarpa (01/23/13 09:50 AM)


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Sarkikos
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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: dscarpa]
      #5638547 - 01/23/13 10:03 AM

I've thought about getting a second XO 5 for binoviewing. But with an OCA, that would be the equivalent of a pair of 2.6mm eyepieces, or about 462x for my 10" f/4.8. That would be pushing it in a binoviewer, and then only for Mars and Saturn during excellent seeing. I wish Pentax had made the XO's in longer focal lengths, maybe an 8mm or 10mm.

Mike


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #5638644 - 01/23/13 10:50 AM

Quote:

For planets and double stars, finer detail and less scatter are much more comfortable to my eyes than longer eye relief and a wider field. For deep sky objects, I want wider field and higher light transmission. I know that many planet, double star, and deep sky enthusiasts have come to the same conclusions.

My feet merely have to get me from point A to point B and back in relative comfort. My eyes have to perform much more delicate work along the way. YMMV. To each their own.


Mike




I get the "right tool for the right job" argument. Indeed, that led me to trying out the 5 XO for myself. But in practice, I found that the eye strain and fatigue I got from observing with the 5 XO actually hindered me from the "delicate work" of viewing fine planetary detail. For me, a big part of capturing fine planetary detail is to be patient and spend plenty of time at the eyepiece to wait for those special moments of extra clarity when the air is really still. Here in Florida, the seeing is generally very good, but even on the best nights there are variations in seeing--when observing at high power, there will be moments when a planetary view will get extra sharp before softening a bit again. (My experience observing the central star in M57 is much the same--when the air is still, it blinks into view; when the seeing degrades ever so slightly it disappears again.) I don't know when those wonderful moments of extra clarity and exquisite detail are going to come, but if my eyes are already worn out from using an uncomfortable eyepiece, I'm not likely going to catch them. I don't regret trying out the 5 XO, but I sure don't miss it now.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5638789 - 01/23/13 12:01 PM

IME, it seems that much of an observer's preference for or against short eye relief eyepieces might have to do with the physical configuration of their eyes, eye sockets and nasal bridge, or even the length of their eye lashes, things we don't have any control over. Well, we can trim our eyelashes!

Some eyepieces that others have described as pure *heck* to view through are no big deal to me. For instance, I spent at least an hour with short focal length BGO's and XO's when I first saw the Pup star. My eyes felt fine. Brandon 6 and 8mm? Not so bad; in fact, pretty comfy.

But I would still like to pick up a used XW 5 at a good price to complement the XO 5!


Mike


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5639112 - 01/23/13 03:34 PM

I find the 5mm XO excellent for planetary observing. In general, eye-relief has never been a problem for me when it comes to viewing planets. These objects are small enough to be viewed without seeing the field stop of the eyepiece. In other words, if the eye-relief is too tight, just back off a bit. One should still be able to still view the planet.

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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: turtle86]
      #5639340 - 01/23/13 06:10 PM

Quote:

But in practice, I found that the eye strain and fatigue I got from observing with the 5 XO actually hindered me from the "delicate work" of viewing fine planetary detail. For me, a big part of capturing fine planetary detail is to be patient and spend plenty of time at the eyepiece to wait for those special moments of extra clarity when the air is really still.




I bought the 5XO as a niche eyepiece--to squeeze out a little more planetary detail, or splitting some difficult doubles. I will use the 6 Delos or 4 Radian for extended viewing, but will use the 5XO for those special situations. Some may believe this is a frivolous expenditure or use for an eyepiece. I don't. I am very pleased to own one of the one or two best eyepieces in this range ever made. On nights of excellent seeing, I will know that I squeezed out as much detail as is possible.


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Re: A 6mm Delos Compared to A 5mm Pentax XO new [Re: GeneT]
      #5639538 - 01/23/13 08:35 PM

Quote:


I bought the 5XO as a niche eyepiece--to squeeze out a little more planetary detail, or splitting some difficult doubles. I will use the 6 Delos or 4 Radian for extended viewing, but will use the 5XO for those special situations. Some may believe this is a frivolous expenditure or use for an eyepiece. I don't. I am very pleased to own one of the one or two best eyepieces in this range ever made. On nights of excellent seeing, I will know that I squeezed out as much detail as is possible.




I don't think it's frivolous at all. I bought the 5 XO for the very same reasons as well, and sure wish it would've worked out for me. From reading this thread, it sounds like some have no problems observing with the XO but others, including myself, find it a bit uncomfortable. In fact, the fellow who sold me his XO had acknowledged that the eye relief was a bit tight. I figured I had nothing to lose in trying it out for myself since it would easy to resell due to its great reputation. Despite my own experience, I would still urge anyone curious about the XO to give observing with it a shot.

I think Mike might be on to something in suggesting that one's preference for or against short eye relief eyepieces might have to do with the physical configuration of their eyes, eye sockets and nasal bridge, etc. Another factor might be something about the design of the XO itself; I'm usually OK with short ER Orthos.

I'd still be willing to try out a 6mm ZAO II (I suspect it might it easier on my eyes), but these days those seem to be harder to find than hens's teeth!


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