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Orthoscopic Eyepiece Comparison

eyepieces double star planet equipment
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#1 TeddyGuy99

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 12:39 AM

I am upgrading to a good quality ortho for planets and double stars. I have narrowed it down to 3 eyepieces:
-University Optics H.D. Abbey Orthoscopic phase II
-University Optics Super abbey Orthoscopic
-Baader Planetarium Classic Ortho
I have heard that that the super abbes are the weaker of the group. I also do prefer eyegaurds because of nearby lights and the HD do not come with any. Would these improve in planetary and doubles obviously compared to the basic synta plossls that come stock with telescopes. My scope is a 8 inch f5.
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#2 otocycle

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 12:54 AM

Hi - yes, you will give up a small bit of field for better contrast and less scatter with the orthos.  Eye relief gets very short at about 7mm and down, so consider ergonomics of the eyepiece top too (flat vs. volcano).   I have the original UO HD orthos but find eyeguards useless when eye relief is short.



#3 dufay

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 05:07 AM

I think it would be safe to assume that the Super Abbe will be the weakest of those three (based on some discouraging user reports). Both the phase IIs and the Baader Classics are good eyepieces. Both should perform better on planets and double stars than your current plossls (the amount of improvement will depend on your scope's optics and collimation as well as your sky conditions and experience as a visual observer). The phase IIs are a bit sharper but the Classics have the advantage of a wider field of view (similar to your plossls), which is helpful if your scope is undriven. The focal lengths of the Classics (6/10/18mm) won't bring your 8" f5 very far into planetary and double star territory though (unless barlowed).



#4 Astrojensen

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 05:32 AM

I have some Synta plössls and they are not bad at all. If you want obvious performance increase, you need to look at very high-end orthos and other specialized planetary eyepiece designs, such as Zeiss orthos, APM Supermonocentrics, Pentax SMC orthos, etc. 

 

It would probably be a much better bet to go with a binoviewer. My own Maxbright binoviewer with some Synta eyepieces handily beats a single Zeiss ortho, when used on the planets. Details is seen with much greater clarity and certainty. Naturally, Zeiss eyepieces on a binoviewer is even better! You only need one eyepiece pair for planetary viewing with a binoviewer, a pair of 25mm's. You change the magnification with barlows. 

 

 

Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark


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#5 junomike

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 07:53 AM

I am upgrading to a good quality ortho for planets and double stars. I have narrowed it down to 3 eyepieces:
-University Optics H.D. Abbey Orthoscopic phase II
-University Optics Super abbey Orthoscopic
-Baader Planetarium Classic Ortho
I have heard that that the super abbes are the weaker of the group. I also do prefer eyegaurds because of nearby lights and the HD do not come with any. Would these improve in planetary and doubles obviously compared to the basic synta plossls that come stock with telescopes. My scope is a 8 inch f5.

The UO H.D. will be best but the BCO is not too far behind.  IMO either will be better than the generic synta plossl, although some feel on-axis there is little difference. 

 

Mike



#6 izar187

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 08:28 AM

I am upgrading to a good quality ortho for planets and double stars. I have narrowed it down to 3 eyepieces:
-University Optics H.D. Abbey Orthoscopic phase II
-University Optics Super abbey Orthoscopic
-Baader Planetarium Classic Ortho
I have heard that that the super abbes are the weaker of the group. I also do prefer eyegaurds because of nearby lights and the HD do not come with any. Would these improve in planetary and doubles obviously compared to the basic synta plossls that come stock with telescopes. My scope is a 8 inch f5.

My choice for a similar circumstance, an 8" f4.8

http://www.siebertop...rtho page).html

 

I find them superior to my barlowed plossl and barlowed vt ortho combinations.



#7 jackofalltrades

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 09:04 AM

Yes, the Super Abbes will be the weakest.  The UOHD's will be the best with the BCO's a step or two down from them.  If you can, I'd suggest checking Agena Astro for the KK Fujiyama Abbes; they're the same as the UOHD's but you can get the full set of eight, instead of the limited three that UO is offering (they've been claiming 9 and 18 coming soon for nearly two years, but no change).  The Astro Hutech Abbes are the same too, but looks like they're being closed out.


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#8 Allan Wade

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 11:14 AM

If you can scrape up the extra cash, I'd recommend the Tak Abbe Orthos.


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#9 Allan Wade

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 11:19 AM

Also, don't worry about the eye guards too much. A bit of local light will prevent your eyes becoming fully dark adapted, which is beneficial for planetary observing because you see better colour rendition. For other objects, where dark adaption is important, use a hood, such as those sold by Dark Skies Apparel. 



#10 SpooPoker

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 01:55 PM

I concur with Astrojensen, you are not going to see a major improvement with these orthos over what you already have, particularly in an f/5 scope. 

 

If you really feel the urge to collect a few orthos, I recommend a good quality barlow and going for a 9mm and 12.5mm ortho.  The barlow will allow an ortho to perform better off axis.  An f/5 scope is better served with a coma corrector coupled with some 60+ afov eyepieces.  A 3-6mm Zoom may be a good trade off of sorts and a good one like the Televue is no slouch on planets either.  Although more pricey, it is one eyepiece versus buying several.  It all kinda balances out at the end.  Just a thought.


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#11 Tank

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 02:48 PM

UO HD or clones are great

 

if you want better performance you have to pay about 3x-4x

czj, pentax smc, zao etc


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#12 TeddyGuy99

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 07:36 PM

What about double stars? Would orthos give better separation under good skies? And would they give me better chances of splitting widely varying stars(example Sirius b or Rigel)? Would they give me better visibility of star on edge of the telescopes limited Stellar magnitude? I already have medium power 60 degree eyepieces for deep sky (40x and ~70x) and I am on a budget of $220 for 2 eyepieces . My telescope is well collamated and I do it every month.I have full set of synta plossls but the bellow 13mm they exhibit breakdown in quality.I do have a decent barlow

Edited by TeddyGuy99, 02 January 2016 - 07:55 PM.


#13 John Huntley

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 08:40 PM

I found the Baader 6mm Genuine Ortho the best eyepiece to split Sirius when used with my 12" dobsonian. My Pentax XW 5mm and Ethos 6mm will do it but the Baader GO does it better and more readily. The Baader GO is very, very simliar to the University Ortho HD. Maybe even the same ?


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#14 Richard Whalen

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Posted 02 January 2016 - 10:18 PM

I would first get a high quality barlow of the 2.5x to 3x type. Then choose your eyepieces. I would look at a 10.5mm for the 2.5x, or a 12.7mm or there about's for the 3x for Jupiter. For Saturn an 8mm with the 2.5, or a 10mm with the 3x. Same for Mars and doubles.



#15 Newborn_Sailor

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Posted 03 January 2016 - 05:26 AM

It's easy to make a good eyecups for eyepieces like UO HD.

You just need a little self adhesive flocking material and a spare few minutes of time.

 

Eyecups_wszystkie.jpg

 

If done right, they are tight and durable.

You can also make them in different colours for easier identification.

 

muszle_p-M 15_25_A 18_s.jpg


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#16 Tank

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Posted 03 January 2016 - 09:07 AM

very nice

easy adjust too



#17 Larry10

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Posted 03 January 2016 - 05:44 PM

What about double stars? Would orthos give better separation under good skies? And would they give me better chances of splitting widely varying stars(example Sirius b or Rigel)? Would they give me better visibility of star on edge of the telescopes limited Stellar magnitude? I already have medium power 60 degree eyepieces for deep sky (40x and ~70x) and I am on a budget of $220 for 2 eyepieces . My telescope is well collamated and I do it every month.I have full set of synta plossls but the bellow 13mm they exhibit breakdown in quality.I do have a decent barlow

The phrase, "below 13mm they exhibit breakdown in quality",  caught my attention. Could you elaborate on that?  What eyepieces below 13mm have you tried?  It seems to me what you have described should not be the case...just wondering if something else is going on here.



#18 TeddyGuy99

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Posted 03 January 2016 - 11:33 PM

I have a cheap 60 degree eyepiece (AT paradigm ed $60) that barlowed or not will outperform every plossl I have. The 6mm always is fuzzy and seems somewhat out of focus bluring planetary detail and creating fuzzy stars.

#19 dufay

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 07:05 AM

Sounds like the eye lens might be dirty. I would advise you to check the eye lens for residue of eyelash oils, if you haven’t already done that. Short eye relief eyepieces, like your 6mm plossl, needs regular cleaning unless you have very short/trimmed eyelashes or use a special blinking technique.


Edited by dufay, 04 January 2016 - 07:06 AM.

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#20 Larry10

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 10:48 AM

I have a cheap 60 degree eyepiece (AT paradigm ed $60) that barlowed or not will outperform every plossl I have. The 6mm always is fuzzy and seems somewhat out of focus bluring planetary detail and creating fuzzy stars.

That helps a little.

A 6mm would have you chugging along at roughly less than 20x per inch ( ~ 150x). That should be more than reasonable to offer a very decent view - unless other factors are at play. One could be a dirty lens as previously suggested; others could be tube currents, local seeing conditions, a  "dud" eyepiece, or maybe you are not truly collimated. It could also be any combination of these. I'm wishing I could have a look because these are just guesses based many years of observing experience. Even a Synta plossl should provide reasonable performance at that magnification.

I used to observe with an 8" 4.5 and even my budget eyepieces performed reasonably well. I never noticed fuzzy stars at 150x unless other things were not right - like seeing or tube currents. 

It would be nice if you could try another eyepiece at about the same magnification to see if the problem persists. You did not say what size Paradigm you have. ( And BTW - I have a few of those and find them to be quite good. I also use Brandons and Tele Vues just so you know what I use for benchmarking).

You already got some advice and recommendations from others regarding orthos. I won't go further except to say I tend to agree with Spoopoker about getting some longer focal lengths and using them with a barlow. F/5 starts getting tough on eyepieces.

I just would not like to see you spend $$ if it might not help with the problem you described.


Edited by Larry10, 04 January 2016 - 10:49 AM.


#21 TeddyGuy99

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 07:26 PM

Lary you said you have other paradigms. Do they work well in the smaller focal lengths(12, 8, 5)? I tested the 15 to my 17 (same tfov)and it seems to to have better light transmission and off axis performance (only ~10% is noticeably distorted). I like this eyepiece too

#22 Larry10

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 08:58 PM

Lary you said you have other paradigms. Do they work well in the smaller focal lengths(12, 8, 5)? I tested the 15 to my 17 (same tfov)and it seems to to have better light transmission and off axis performance (only ~10% is noticeably distorted). I like this eyepiece too

Of those you listed I have the 8mm. I also use it mostly either in an f/8 scope or an f/7.5 so it's not an apples to apples with your f/5.

Regarding transmission I simply don't do any eyepiece to eyepiece comparisons for that and never did, so I can't respond to that question.

My main concern was that you reported fuzzy stars and blurry planets with your 6mm, and in my experience even the modestly priced eyepieces I have used would not do that in center of the field if all else was well. I also realize "fuzzy" and " blurry" can be subjective. I was simply concerned that you rule out any other possible issues before you made another purchase. It could also be your 6mm is simply a rare dud.

I owned several very nice short orthos of Japanese manufacture in the past and they worked very well for planetary and double star observing with the scopes I had at the time. I now use a TV 3-6 zoom for the same purposes. It's sharp, has a wider field than most orthos, has better eye relief, and is most convenient. It's also a bit pricey.

If you've got a decent mirror and all other conditions are optimal there is no reason I can think of  you should not see sharp stars at 200x or higher with your 8". Good Luck! 



#23 penguinx64

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 04:57 PM

I have good results using the Kson 24mm Super Abbe which is similar to the OU 24mm Super Abbe.  Maybe from the same manufacturer?  It has great eye relief and it works well barlowed.  I took this picture holding a point and shoot camera up to this eyepiece at 56x using a 3x barlow right before the last Lunar eclipse.  My 12.5mm Edscorp Circle-T Ortho volcano top works great too, but eye relief is a bit short.  The volcano top helps compensate for the short eye relief.  I like the Circle-T volcano top better than a KK Fujiyama flat top.  It's way more comfortable to use.

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#24 F.Meiresonne

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 05:48 PM

I found the Baader 6mm Genuine Ortho the best eyepiece to split Sirius when used with my 12" dobsonian. My Pentax XW 5mm and Ethos 6mm will do it but the Baader GO does it better and more readily. The Baader GO is very, very simliar to the University Ortho HD. Maybe even the same ?

Yes, the BGO are very good. I have 2 off them , really tack sharp..but i believe they are discontinued..I think also that the BGO is thesame as the UO HD



#25 bgi

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Posted 09 January 2016 - 08:53 AM

I have some Synta plössls and they are not bad at all. If you want obvious performance increase, you need to look at very high-end orthos and other specialized planetary eyepiece designs, such as Zeiss orthos, APM Supermonocentrics, Pentax SMC orthos, etc. 

 

It would probably be a much better bet to go with a binoviewer. My own Maxbright binoviewer with some Synta eyepieces handily beats a single Zeiss ortho, when used on the planets. Details is seen with much greater clarity and certainty. Naturally, Zeiss eyepieces on a binoviewer is even better! You only need one eyepiece pair for planetary viewing with a binoviewer, a pair of 25mm's. You change the magnification with barlows. 

 

 

Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark

 

Listen to Thomas.  He's right.  Binoviewing planets will allow you to see so much more than monoviewing.  Even the economical WO or Antares binoviewer will allow you to see more details and reduce eye strain.  Give a pair of Delites a try, as well.  Folks have been asking Uncle Al to make a line of Orthos.  The Delites are his answer to orthos.  They are better in so many ways.  Increased comfort plays a large role in being able to see.  Binoviewing and Delites go a long way to increasing comfort.  Hop over to the binoviewer forum for advice on barlows, etc., appropriate for your scope.  The Arcturus package with two barlows, two eyepieces, and self-centering eyepiece holders is an excellent starter.




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