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Ideas for filters for viewing Mars

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#1 taki53

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:11 PM

:question: Hi. I wanted some recomendations for what type of filters I should use when viewing Mars. Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks.

#2 BillP

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:17 PM

I'm generally not a big fan of filters, but I do find using the Baader Contrast Booster helps make the features more prominent in appearance.

#3 taki53

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:25 PM

Thanks Bill. I hope you see my next question on the forum.

#4 coopman

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:28 PM

There are some good threads on filters in the planetary viewing section.

#5 Brian Schmidt

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:37 PM

I found a used orange filter a while back for 5 bucks. Not wanting to spend 100 bucks for the mars filter considering it would get used every other year :grin:, I grabbed it.

I was out last night looking at Mars for the first time this year and tried the medium blue, green, red, yellow, and orange filters using my 8 inch "planetary" newtonian and 7 Nagler. The orange was actually pretty good at revealing surface features and the northern ice cap, which I would not have really noticed without a filter in my 8 inch. The others didn't do much for me. Just my :penny: :penny: Happy viewing.

#6 mjt24073

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:48 PM

I've had good success with a #21 orange filter to bring out some of the dark surface details. They are reasonably priced at less than $20. I believe the light blue filters will bring out the polar cap. I purchased a Televue Mars A filter this year and also like that. It brings out dark surface features and the polar cap at the same time, but it is rather pricy, and seems to get mixed reviews on the whole.

Mike

#7 ibase

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:52 PM

Last night was a great night to me for viewing Mars. The past few days were the first times ever where I was able to see details on the planet particularly the white polar cap (without filter). For the 1st time too, I tried out the red and yellow filters that came with the Celestron EP/Filter kit and the red (#21) made the surface details come out prominently (like post above, EDIT: I thought #21 was red, Mike's right it's orange; anyhow, it works..). The yellow filter didn't do much though. Scope used was a WO Megrez 102ED at 142x. But even without filter, the view was just as great. Hope this helps.

Best,

#8 MrGibbly

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 11:03 PM

I wish I could say I've been having good luck with Mars this year but its been just a pink/orange ball of mush for me so far. No discernible detail but I'm blaming that on the skies. Everything is wiggles. I'm still hoping I can get a good night of steady seeing, no clouds, etc. before Mars wanders off.

#9 David Knisely

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 12:37 AM

:question: Hi. I wanted some recomendations for what type of filters I should use when viewing Mars. Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks.


I generally only use two filters for Mars:

1. A red Wratten #23a (or equivalent) which helps the dark markings stand out.

2. Pale Blue Wratten #80a (or equivalent) filter for the polar caps and white orographic clouds.

In a pinch, I will use the Lumicon Deep-sky filter as a blue filter for the polar caps and clouds, as it works pretty well. Clear skies to you.

#10 WRose

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 02:15 AM

FWIW, as David & others indicate, a red filter (#25) is the "Traditional" Mars filter. Personally I preffer the lighter red (Baader 610nm Longpass) or Hirsch 23A (Like the Wratten 23A) and the red-orange (#21) colors.
The 80A is a lessor known "classic" Mars Filter strictly for use as David indicates.
I like the Baader Contrast Boost Filter and have a pair for binoviewing. I definitely like the Zeiss Marsglas which is designed to screw on their eyepieces but probably my favorite in general is the TeleVue Bandmate Mars Type B.

#11 kaaikop

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 09:56 AM

Orion Mars filter works great for me

#12 dyslexic nam

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 10:08 AM

I did a post is the equipment section about the benefit of a Tiffen photographic 'enhancer' filter (thread here: http://www.cloudynig.../o/all/fpart/1)

I find it to be an excellent stand alone filter for Mars and Jupiter.

Cheers.

#13 Starman1

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 11:32 AM

#25--enhances dark markings the most
#23A--enhances dark markings well, doesn't dim Mars as much as #25
#21--enhances dark markings less but makes dust storms more visible
#15--the best for examining dust storms or bright areas like Hellas
#82A--enhancement for limb clouds and polar ice cap
#80A--darker version of #82A for larger scopes
#38A--bordering on violet, this allows polar cap, limb clouds and can make the "violet clearing" more visible.
#47--for the larger scopes, this allows you to be present during a "violet clearing", which is, unfortunately, a rare event.
#30 seems to combine red and blue in one filter (appearing magenta), and produces a pleasing enhancement of all of Mars' features.
Many of the dichroic "Mars" filters seem to duplicate this filter with dielectrics

Overall, the #23A seems to be the best "Mars filter"

#14 starrancher

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 12:06 PM

Orange Red Orange Red Red Orange Orange & Red !
IMHO though it is very important to consider the size of the scope when making a determination on what works best .
On a smaller scope , say up to 6 inches , I would recommend the #21 orange . This is the filter that I find consistently pulls the finest surface details from Mars . When getting the brighter images that a larger scope will naturally produce , you need go darker . So my recommendation for say , 8 to 12 inch scope would be the # 23A red filter & for anything larger , the # 25A dark red . YMMV as personal pref varies . I personally tend to enjoy my planetary viewing in a more subdued light , while others like a brighter image & some refuse to use filters at all . To my eyes , taking down the brightness & using the appropriate color is what works while taking into consideration the percentage of light throughput of the filter depending on the aperture of the scope .

Just my :penny: :penny:s'

#15 Doug Neal

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 12:42 PM

Not being a filter-savvy guy, this may be a stupid question. But, would using a Red Astronomik imaging filter be of any use for viewing Mars?

#16 Johndob

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 08:25 PM

Baader skyglow?

#17 ibase

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 09:26 PM

Orange Red Orange Red Red Orange Orange & Red !
IMHO though it is very important to consider the size of the scope when making a determination on what works best .
On a smaller scope , say up to 6 inches , I would recommend the #21 orange . This is the filter that I find consistently pulls the finest surface details from Mars . When getting the brighter images that a larger scope will naturally produce , you need go darker . So my recommendation for say , 8 to 12 inch scope would be the # 23A red filter & for anything larger , the # 25A dark red . YMMV as personal pref varies . I personally tend to enjoy my planetary viewing in a more subdued light , while others like a brighter image & some refuse to use filters at all . To my eyes , taking down the brightness & using the appropriate color is what works while taking into consideration the percentage of light throughput of the filter depending on the aperture of the scope .

Just my :penny: :penny:s'


Starrancher you've hit the nail squarely on the head! :bow:
So last night again we here were blessed with a night of good seeing, with the usual suspects available for training the scope on. This time I tried out all the filters in the Celestron kit - red (#25), blue, green, gray, yellow, orange-red (#21), and moon filter on the 4" ED refractor with Mars and it was the orange-red (#21) that showed the best mix of color and details on Mars. The red filter (#25) darkened the view too much such that the white polar cap was hardly noticeable anymore but the other dark surface details did come out; still, the orange-red #21 filter brought out the most details and at the same time it did not drown out the polar cap - it was still conspicuously visible; and also, the #21 presented a view that was the most natural looking color of the whole lot and suited Mars to a T. I guess the #25 red will be useful on bigger aperture scopes to control the brightness, but for the 4" scope, the #21 is the best filter to use for Mars, at least from my experience. If I had to buy only one filter, the #21 would be it!

Best,

#18 Jim Rosenstock

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 09:39 PM

Like many, I have used an orange or light blue filter for dark and light features respectively. But generally, I can go back and find those features unfiltered too...

...and IMO Mars's natural color is so beautiful, it's a shame to "colorize" it....

...so some sessions, the filters don't come out at all.

Cheers,

Jim

#19 David Knisely

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 12:49 AM

Orange Red Orange Red Red Orange Orange & Red !
IMHO though it is very important to consider the size of the scope when making a determination on what works best .
On a smaller scope , say up to 6 inches , I would recommend the #21 orange . This is the filter that I find consistently pulls the finest surface details from Mars . When getting the brighter images that a larger scope will naturally produce , you need go darker . So my recommendation for say , 8 to 12 inch scope would be the # 23A red filter & for anything larger , the # 25A dark red . YMMV as personal pref varies . I personally tend to enjoy my planetary viewing in a more subdued light , while others like a brighter image & some refuse to use filters at all . To my eyes , taking down the brightness & using the appropriate color is what works while taking into consideration the percentage of light throughput of the filter depending on the aperture of the scope .

Just my :penny: :penny:s'


I have used my 24a filter in my 100mm f/6 refractor with good results, so there isn't really much of a lower limit to its use here. Clear skies to you.

#20 ibase

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 07:33 AM

Filter #21 actually looks more red than orange:

Posted Image

The red filter #25 at the upper left corner looks more like dark maroon. Posted pic just for reference - as in my previous post, the #21 to my eyes appears closer to the true color of Mars.

Best,

#21 NewAstronomer

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:51 AM

Many people recommended the Orange 21, I've used that as well and continue to use 80, but you will definatley want Vernonscope #30 magenta, add in their adapter to make it work with non Brandon eyepieces. Its a great filter for my 10" or 11" scope and even the smaller ones.

#22 Djarum

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 10:59 AM

The baader M&SG filter works great. I was able to see a good bit more detail with it than without it.

Dj

#23 Mike Hosea

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 01:48 PM

I wonder if there isn't some variation. It's been awhile since I had a #21 orange filter, but I recall it looking quite orange, not so red.

#24 t.r.

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 01:56 PM

Hoya 85B(light salmon) :waytogo:

#25 starrancher

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 02:02 PM

Hoya 85B(light salmon) :waytogo:


Where can that be gotten in the 1.25 inch format ?


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