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ITT vs L3 White Phosphor NV tube

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35 replies to this topic

#1 Kstevens

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 02:22 PM

I have a shot at an ITT WP 11769 variable gain Pinnacle tube with the following specs to replace my PVS-14 green tube:

 

PR -  2372
Halo -  .91
EBI - .22
Res -  64 lp/mm
SNR - 27.3

 

Asking you guys who are using WP, will this work or wait for something else? 

 

Kent S.


Edited by Kstevens, 11 August 2016 - 02:57 PM.

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#2 PEterW

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 02:59 PM

Not bad

Peter

#3 dtripz

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 05:14 PM

Nice spec tube,, do you have any idea of your current tube specs? Just be aware that most likely, your only gain will be a change of color. If you are ok with that, it should be awesome. Its only negative I would say would be the resolution of 68, as sometimes you can get one of 72, however im not sure if thats appreciable visually.

Edited by dtripz, 11 August 2016 - 05:17 PM.


#4 jdbastro

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 05:16 PM

I have a shot at an ITT WP 11769 variable gain Pinnacle tube with the following specs to replace my PVS-14 green tube:

 

PR -  2372
Halo -  .91
EBI - .22
Res -  64 lp/mm
SNR - 27.3

 

Asking you guys who are using WP, will this work or wait for something else? 

 

Kent S.

The PR and EBI sound very good.

 

You could do significantly better with SNR (at the expense of EBI) and resolution, e.g. SNR ~=30,  Res= 72.

 

For low power viewing (especially 1X), I prefer tubes with a resolution of 72 over 64.  The difference is VERY noticeable.

 

If the price is right for you, then go for it.  If you're willing to wait a month or two, you should inquire about an L3 unfilmed WP tube with a bit better specs (though likely higher price).

 

Good luck.



#5 Eddgie

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 07:33 PM

For whatever reason, the ITT White Phosphor tubes seem to be running an this range (S/N 26 to S/N 28).   

 

I don't know why this is, but even the distributor, Night Vision Depot, does not list a WP tube higher than HP+ (which is right in line with the specs you posted).

 

You can do better with L3 (SN in the 31-33 range an EBI in the .2-.3 range) but that is going to run you about $2800 just for the tube but the specs on the tube in question are pretty good.  

 

So if you are getting it at a steep discount to the new L3 price, then I think it is a tube that would work very well, but unless you are getting a super price, I would go ahead and get the L3 filmless.


Edited by Eddgie, 11 August 2016 - 07:34 PM.


#6 Kstevens

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 07:42 PM

Ed, source for the L3 11769 WP filmless or is it the same source as for your Mod 3?

 

Kent



#7 Eddgie

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 08:05 PM

I got my Mod 3 and the L3 tube from Richard at Ultimate Night Vision, but it appears from a different post that ABNightvision is behind the demand curve for the Mod 3 bodies with C mount. 



#8 Kstevens

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Posted 11 August 2016 - 08:21 PM

I got my Mod 3 and the L3 tube from Richard at Ultimate Night Vision, but it appears from a different post that ABNightvision is behind the demand curve for the Mod 3 bodies with C mount. 

Thanks, I will contact them about the L3 tube and specs and hopefully they have one in stock.  Otherwise I will probably get the other tube.  I need to get this conversion done as I am traveling to Western South Dakota where I understand there are some dark skies compared to here on the East Coast.



#9 Kstevens

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 09:54 AM

Interesting reply back from Richard relative to the specs of his last L3 tube batch:

 

Color     PC       EBI      SNR     Res      Halo     FOM            BLEMS
White   2163      0.1     32.2      64        0.8      2060.8
White   2040      0.4     30.1      64        0.8      1926.4
White   2164      0.3     31.5      64        0.8      2016
White   2163      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2158      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2003      0.3     28.9      64        0.7      1849.6
White   2167      0.3     31.1      64        0.7      1990.4
White   2167      0.7     31         64        0.7      1984
White   2160      0.3     31.2      64        0.8      1996.8
White   2160      0.3     29.8      64        0.8      1907.2       6x6 in Zone 2
White   2161      0.5     31         64        0.8      1984
Green 2513      0.8     34.3      72        0.8       2469.6
Green 2482      0.6     33.9      64        0.8       2169.6       6x2 in Zone 2

 

So with the ITT and L3 at almost the same price, which specs are more important for astronomy use?

 

Kent


Edited by Kstevens, 12 August 2016 - 09:55 AM.


#10 Eddgie

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 10:23 AM

Well, I hat the ITT green with SN/30 and photocathode of 2500 with Halo and EBI both in the .8 to .9 range and I have to say that it worked really great.

 

The current tubes are in the 32 range with 2150 photocathode range and .7 halo, but the EBI is .2 for one and .1 for the other and I have to say that these do work better.  In particular, nebula I think do stand out a bit better.  For example, I think that I see hints of North America even without filters (from darker skies).

 

The view is very much quieter in the L3 filmless tubes too.....   After I got the first one, I was looking at the sky one night trough the Comet Catcher and turned down the gain.   It was uncanny.. Almost like I was looking though a normal eyepiece, There was very little scintillation and with the white stars against the black background, it was almost a dead ringer for a conventional eyepiece.

 

Ah, but I did not have gain control on the Micro, so I never did that comparison.

 

I had been told that Jason at Ident could get tubes that were better than these that Richard has in stock, but Jason trying for several months did not turn up a pair of WP tubes at all.    He said at the time that there had been some big interruptions in his deliveries, but maybe that has changed now, or maybe he orders tubes with higher specs that take longer to get????  I don't know, I just know that I talked to him several times about getting a pair of nice tubes and he did not turn any up.

 

It may be possible that Richard or Jason can get the magic 35 S/N 72 line tubes in WP, but Richard said his orders tended to be about what is listed above and that he rarely sees a tube higher than 32 or 33, but EBI in the .1 to .2 range is very common. 

 

I love the Mod 3 C and the WP tubes are icing on the cake but if you made me "Settle" for a green tube with S/N of 35 and resolution of 72, with an EBI of .15 I have to say I would be tempted.

 

Still, looking around at night with the WP tubes is a treat.  Like looking at a black and white HD TV.   



#11 SteveSMS

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 11:06 AM

I was promised the "worst" tube out of the ones on this list so I'm cancelling my order. Maybe I'll buy one later but that's a BIG maybe.

 

Interesting reply back from Richard relative to the specs of his last L3 tube batch:

 

Color     PC       EBI      SNR     Res      Halo     FOM            BLEMS
White   2163      0.1     32.2      64        0.8      2060.8
White   2040      0.4     30.1      64        0.8      1926.4
White   2164      0.3     31.5      64        0.8      2016
White   2163      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2158      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2003      0.3     28.9      64        0.7      1849.6
White   2167      0.3     31.1      64        0.7      1990.4
White   2167      0.7     31         64        0.7      1984
White   2160      0.3     31.2      64        0.8      1996.8
White   2160      0.3     29.8      64        0.8      1907.2       6x6 in Zone 2
White   2161      0.5     31         64        0.8      1984
Green 2513      0.8     34.3      72        0.8       2469.6
Green 2482      0.6     33.9      64        0.8       2169.6       6x2 in Zone 2

 

So with the ITT and L3 at almost the same price, which specs are more important for astronomy use?

 

Kent



#12 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 11:25 AM

 

I was promised the "worst" tube out of the ones on this list so I'm cancelling my order. Maybe I'll buy one later but that's a BIG maybe.

 

 

I was also tempted to hold out for a few batches. Not because of the "worst" (which in perspective is probably better than 98% of the tubes currently in use), but to hold out for top resolution and s/n. (I must say that monster Green tube is pretty tempting ... but I want WP.)

 

Thinking it through a little bit more with military, government agencies, and law enforcement getting first picks it could be a long wait for higher specs.

 

Since my threshold specs were met I decided it was more important to get in the game now rather than next winter or beyond.


Edited by Jeff Morgan, 12 August 2016 - 11:27 AM.


#13 SteveSMS

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 11:39 AM

I believe that the tube that I was promised is potentially better than the Ultra tube in my Micro but I if I'm paying equal price I want equal quality. I think I'm going to try to be content with what I have for now and forget about "going white" for awhile.



#14 Eddgie

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 11:08 PM

 

I was promised the "worst" tube out of the ones on this list so I'm cancelling my order. Maybe I'll buy one later but that's a BIG maybe.

 

Interesting reply back from Richard relative to the specs of his last L3 tube batch:

 

Color     PC       EBI      SNR     Res      Halo     FOM            BLEMS
White   2163      0.1     32.2      64        0.8      2060.8
White   2040      0.4     30.1      64        0.8      1926.4
White   2164      0.3     31.5      64        0.8      2016
White   2163      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2158      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2003      0.3     28.9      64        0.7      1849.6
White   2167      0.3     31.1      64        0.7      1990.4
White   2167      0.7     31         64        0.7      1984
White   2160      0.3     31.2      64        0.8      1996.8
White   2160      0.3     29.8      64        0.8      1907.2       6x6 in Zone 2
White   2161      0.5     31         64        0.8      1984
Green 2513      0.8     34.3      72        0.8       2469.6
Green 2482      0.6     33.9      64        0.8       2169.6       6x2 in Zone 2

 

So with the ITT and L3 at almost the same price, which specs are more important for astronomy use?

 

Kent

 

 

 

 

I was promised the "worst" tube out of the ones on this list so I'm cancelling my order. Maybe I'll buy one later but that's a BIG maybe.

 

Interesting reply back from Richard relative to the specs of his last L3 tube batch:

 

Color     PC       EBI      SNR     Res      Halo     FOM            BLEMS
White   2163      0.1     32.2      64        0.8      2060.8
White   2040      0.4     30.1      64        0.8      1926.4
White   2164      0.3     31.5      64        0.8      2016
White   2163      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2158      0.5     31.7      64        0.8      2028.8
White   2003      0.3     28.9      64        0.7      1849.6
White   2167      0.3     31.1      64        0.7      1990.4
White   2167      0.7     31         64        0.7      1984
White   2160      0.3     31.2      64        0.8      1996.8
White   2160      0.3     29.8      64        0.8      1907.2       6x6 in Zone 2
White   2161      0.5     31         64        0.8      1984
Green 2513      0.8     34.3      72        0.8       2469.6
Green 2482      0.6     33.9      64        0.8       2169.6       6x2 in Zone 2

 

So with the ITT and L3 at almost the same price, which specs are more important for astronomy use?

 

Kent

 

Well, not sure how you are measuring "Worst"

 

If you are only looking at S/N, the lowest tube on the list is 29.8, but even that tube has an EBI of .3.

 

That is way below the typical EBI of the ITT tubes, which tend to run in the .8 range.

 

Also, all of the tubes that Richard has listed here are full mil-spec tubes.   As I understand it, many of the tubes sold by NVDepot (who is the US distributor for ITT) are consumer grade tubes that are not Mil-Spec (not that this matters hugely because sometimes the cause for rejection is minor, sometimes not). 

 

The point though is that all of these tubes have very low EBI as compared to typical ITT tubes, and the difference between a 28.9 SN and a 31 S/N N tube is only easy to tell when you are looking at the spec sheet.

 

Under the sky, you won't see this difference, but a low EBI gives a tube a very high clarity.    Sometimes I feel like I am using a traditional eyepiece when I put the monocular in a telescope.   The view is so clean and quite and stars are so sharp that it kind of does not feel like I am looking through an image itensifier.

 

If you are using a ULT tube though, the difference is not going to be great becaues the ULT tubes are quite excellent as compared to the other grades of tubes, and are in fact capable of doing great observing.    I think the L3 is better though, but the difference is not like Pack up the Suitcases and put the team back on the train kind of difference. 



#15 PEterW

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 02:29 AM

I'd be happy with any of the ones with an EBI <0.2. Get yourself a system soon before the milky way nebulae begin to disappear till next year. Maybe sometimes having too much choice can be a bad thing?

Cheers

Peter

#16 SteveSMS

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 05:32 AM

I was getting the tube with the lowest FOM of the batch for the same price that people were getting the highest spec tubes for. Once I saw that it was game over for me. I'm sure that the tube I would have gotten is a great performer but, at the same price for top specs, I can live happily without it.



#17 SteveSMS

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 05:33 AM

I'd be happy with any of the ones with an EBI <0.2. Get yourself a system soon before the milky way nebulae begin to disappear till next year. Maybe sometimes having too much choice can be a bad thing?

Cheers

Peter

I already have a PVS-7 and a Micro with an ultra tube.



#18 cnoct

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 06:33 AM

All L3 commercial tubes are fallout tubes. 
 
L3 does not supply the civilian market with 'Mil Spec' tubes. 
 
L3 does not have contract over runs of 'Mil Spec' tubes.
 
Though an L3 commercial tube may appear to and may actually meet all the performance requirements on an 'A' level test sheet, the tube has failed one or more performance standards required by contract. 
 
Considering the performance metrics on some of L3's fallout tubes, I'm super happy to have them as an option even if they are all fallouts. We all should be happy L3 is even willing to sell fallouts as their largest customer NSWC CRANE would rather have L3 destroy all fallout tubes at taxpayer expense than to have them being sold to the commercial market. 
 
If a consumer wants must have a commercial equivalent to a 'Mil Spec' tube, go with an F9800VG or F9815VG (Full Mil Spec MX-10160C/AVS-6 and MX-11769/UV) from Night Vision Depot. 
 
 
ITT P45 vs L3 P45
 
Not really a  contest, L3 P45 hands down, I wouldn't even consider an ITT P45 unless it was at dealer cost, had a FOM of 2200 and gain greater than 68,000 fL/fc @ 2x10^-6fc
 
Not all phosphors are created equal, ITT and L3 use different suppliers with different phosphor formulations. ITT added P45 phosphor tubes to compete with L3 P45 and so far their P45 tubes are not in the same league as those from L3. The performance gap isn't attributable to filmed vs filmless, it simply comes down to phosphor formulations and philosophy from which those formulations are attributable. 
 
The attributes of L3's P45 are all performance driven, ITT's are all market driven i.e. must have P45 option.  
 
To the OP: Those specs are okay for an ITT P43 tube but would make for one ugly ITT P45 tube. 
 
If any of those tubes listed by metrics in post #9 had a luminous gain greater or equal to 70000 @ 2 x 10 ^-6, I'd be all over it. 

Things get exciting when the FOM exceeds 2400 and gain reaches and exceeds 70000.
 
However, the spread of performance metrics on each of the tubes in the list above are really tight, the PR is about right for the EBI and SNR metrics. A tight spread is indicative of a solid performing tube, all of those in the list  are solid. 
 
The P43 tube with a FOM of 2469.6 is approaching super tube territory, the price was exceedingly far given the demand for L3 filmless tubes.


Edited by cnoct, 13 August 2016 - 09:06 AM.


#19 lijia

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 09:30 PM

Hi Edd, 

 

May I ask, if your tube is a blem free tube?

And if under a white bright background do you see any of the honeycomb effect on those L3 tubes?



#20 pwang99

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 10:26 PM

FWIW, I believe I saw a faint honeycomb effect in my WP L3 from the above batch, and Jeff also indicated he had seen the same in his.  But I have to go hunting around for it; it's not been an issue in my observing thus far.

 

I see the honeycomb effect much more prominently in my green phosphor PVS-7, for instance.



#21 lijia

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 10:44 PM

FWIW, I believe I saw a faint honeycomb effect in my WP L3 from the above batch, and Jeff also indicated he had seen the same in his.  But I have to go hunting around for it; it's not been an issue in my observing thus far.

 

I see the honeycomb effect much more prominently in my green phosphor PVS-7, for instance.

The reason I am asking is because somehow I felt L3 tubes are slightly more prominent with the honeycomb or the "window veil" effect.

I have seen a MX11769/UV OMNI 7 tube myself with such effect. Also some post on ar 15 and mostly happen with L3's.

Unless looking deliberately, they are not very obvious. I read its even "normal" for them to clear QC. 



#22 Eddgie

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 09:04 AM

Hi Edd, 

 

May I ask, if your tube is a blem free tube?

And if under a white bright background do you see any of the honeycomb effect on those L3 tubes?

 

I can't say that I have seen any meaningful honeycomb, but I have not really turned up the gain and looked at bright, uniform surfaces to see if I could find it either. 

 

If it is there, it must be rather minimal, but I don't go around looking at bright walls anymore, and under the sky, I have not really noticed any.

 


Edited by Eddgie, 09 September 2016 - 09:11 AM.


#23 Eddgie

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 09:25 AM

Ok, at the prompting from this thread, I just took my Mod 3 into a dark closet and focused it on the white ceiling and turned on the illumminator.

 

Both tubes showed honeycomb but I had to look for it. One tube was a bit more pronounced than the other and I had to kind of close focus my eyes to see it well which gave me eye strain, but when I looked specifically for it, I was able to see honeycomb in both tubes, but only with the illuminator on.

 

I have not ever noticed it under normal observing, and since I know it is pretty common to see under these conditions (even, bright field with illuminator on) I guess I never thought that I should go looking for it because I would likely see it.

 

Perhaps I simply have learned to ignore it or something because in normal observing, I have never noticed it at all.  

 

I generally run  with a bit less than full gain, and I pretty much have to run filters but my sky is very bright even with filters and I have not noticed it at all.

 

I had to force myself to close focus to be able to see the honeycomb.   If I had anything in the field, it totally went away because my eye was drawn to the object in the field.

 

I have a headache now.. LOL. 

 

If you look for honeycomb, my guess is that you will see it in most devices, and maybe it is one of those things that some people can't "Unsee"

 

I had the Denkmeier 3D LOA eyepeices, and once I started to see the array artificats, I could not unsee them.

 

I have seen honeycomb though in most devices, and I guess maybe I have learned to unsee it, but more than that, I stopped looking for it because if you look for it, it would appear that you will see it.   I have seen it in pretty much every tube to some degree but almost always under the same artificial condition of a uniform surface with the illuimnator turned on. 

 

I was completely unaware of it until 10 minutes ago, but the moment I stopped looking for it in the eyepieces, I stopped seeing it.   It is like I had to close focus to see and if I put the light fixture into the field and my eye took the target in, I could no longer really force my eye to focus on the honeycomb. 

 

I doubt that this post will do anything to make people feel better about seeing honeycomb but when I looked for it, I was able to see it too, though in normal observing, I was absolutely unaware of it.    It could be simply that my brain has suppressed it, but in my case, the honeycomb I do think is quite minimal. 

 

Don't make me go look for the little black dots at the intersections.  My head still hurts.   I am sure if I looked, I would see them too... LOL..   


Edited by Eddgie, 09 September 2016 - 09:32 AM.


#24 lijia

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 08:45 PM

Thanks for sharing your observation. Before I got to know about these honeycomb.

I didnt even realise they are there until I read about them and paying attention to them by out focus them and looking for it.

It seems like the more we know, the more unhappy we are..haha..I guess that apply to everything in life in a certain way.

If we hand a tube with SNR of 36 to 2 folks. One being a total layman and the other a "expert in nvg".

I believe we will get to answer: whow..what an amazing device! The other would be " hmm..I see some dirty cathode effect in your filmless tube"..

LOL...

 

At some point, I was thinking about those "floaters" in my eye. One day they will get so pronouce as I age thinking that my nvg tube is no good...hahaha



#25 Vondragonnoggin

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 09:26 PM

Even mil-spec tubes have a certain amount of allowable imperfections.

 

I understand being picky for something that you pay quite a bit for, but most people I have seen get an NV device soon forget about any spots or imperfections as soon as they get a narrowband Ha view, ir start scanning the Milky Way from their light polluted surroundings.

 

Like scintillation - a fair amount can easily become ignored if the objects viewed are coming through with detail.

 

I don't really think about imperfections anymore. Too many great views of stuff I never imagined being able to see.

 

I haven't noticed any honeycomb on my green tubes, but not looking for it either. I have seen cnocts video of honeycomb and plenty of pictures, so I am familiar with its look, but not in my devices and not going to look for it as right now I can't see any viewing astronomical objects.


Edited by Vondragonnoggin, 09 September 2016 - 09:29 PM.



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