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2017 Eyepiece Buyer's Guide

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31 replies to this topic

#1 Starman1

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 01:43 PM

Here is the 2017 Eyepiece Buyer's Guide.

Place your telescope's focal length at the top of column O (where the red letters are) and hit enter, and your telescope's f/ratio at the top of column P and hit enter.

All the various fields will populate with information for your scope at that point.

 

Some notes:

1) Levenhuk may be gone.  No dealer has stock  They don't have stock.  If anyone knows, send me a message.

There are other companies that may disappear in 2017.

What will happen, I don't know.  Stay tuned.

2) There has been an explosion of private label offerings.

The same 60°, or 100°, or "flat field" eyepieces and lots of others are now being offered by many different re-sellers.

If the market boils down to two dozen sellers all selling the same eyepieces under private labels, there will be little point to doing a 2018 Buyer's Guide.

Attached Files


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#2 scjoe

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 01:49 PM

Great job! It will come in handy!

#3 Kent10

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 01:50 PM

Thanks Don.  I just used the 2016 version today.  Very handy.



#4 tony_spina

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 02:28 PM

Thanks Don.  As always this is greatly appreciated



#5 vaztr

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 03:13 PM

Don,

 

Just a quick note, cells O11 and P11 have small errors in them. Easily fixed even by drongos like me, but I thought you'd like to know

 

VAZ



#6 vaztr

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 03:13 PM

Oh, and THANX for all the great work you've put into this

 

VAZ



#7 Joe1950

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 03:23 PM

Thanks Don!



#8 Starman1

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Posted 03 May 2017 - 04:02 PM

Don,

 

Just a quick note, cells O11 and P11 have small errors in them. Easily fixed even by drongos like me, but I thought you'd like to know

 

VAZ

It was O12 and P12 that referenced back to O1 and P1 instead of O11 and P11.

They still populated just fine when a figure was placed in O1 and P1, but I corrected it on mine.

It shouldn't cause a problem for anyone, but if it does, I'll repost.

Don



#9 Symui

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 07:20 PM

Thanks for updating your list for 2017, I have frequently used it as a reference over the last few years.

 

I understand this is a "buyers guide" but any chance of including a few of the classic eyepieces that are no longer available for comparison sake.  For instant, I have most of the specs for the ZAO I & II's, TMB Supermonos but not all of them and would like to fill in the gaps. Maybe a separate tab for the oldies but goodies???

 

Either way - thanks for putting this guide together.

 

- Rick


Edited by Symui, 08 May 2017 - 07:23 PM.


#10 Starman1

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 10:24 AM

I'm really not interested in producing a guide to all the eyepieces that have ever been made.

I've owned >330 eyepieces and probably 250 of them are gone from the market now (e.g. Galoc, Clavé, Unitron).

The list could easily be 4 or 5 times as long if I did that, and the information would be very hard to find.

 

It's a spreadsheet, so feel free to add the information to your own copy.  My goal is to enable people to know what is available,

not what might be available if you look for a couple years in the classifieds for a used eyepiece.

 

I had mixed emotions about including Levenhuk, since the brand seems to be gone, but there were enough pieces out there in dealer stocks

I left it in.

There are many many resellers of the same Chinese eyepieces now, though, and resellers seem to come and go.

It's unclear whether I should just include all of them in the next guide and list the same eyepiece 20 different times under 20 different labels.

 

And the Chinese companies themselves seem to be marketing on eBay with no names attached.

And now there are plastic-lensed eyepieces making their appearance at very cheap prices. 

 

I have found and corrected some errors, so I might post a revised version soon, after the nebula filters guide is done.


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#11 craigcox61

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Posted 10 May 2017 - 09:29 PM

Thanks Don

#12 YoursTruly83

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Posted 17 May 2017 - 02:10 PM

Arg!  I can't seem to open it. Apparently there's an error in my download. I tried downloading it three times and each time the same thing. 



#13 Starman1

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Posted 17 May 2017 - 03:33 PM

Send me your email in a private message, and I'll email it to you.

Don



#14 YoursTruly83

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Posted 17 May 2017 - 10:36 PM

Send me your email in a private message, and I'll email it to you.

Don

Thanks Don!  It turns out it was just something wrong with Microsoft Office! I repaired it, but now I have to re-register it, and it doesn't seem interested in accepting any of my email addresses... *le sigh*  Anyway, clear skies. 



#15 Starman1

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Posted 18 May 2017 - 01:24 AM

You can also download the free program Apache Open Office.  It is, essentially, a free version of a completely cross-compatibe program with Windows Office that can be used for all Windows Office files.



#16 ShaulaB

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Posted 21 May 2017 - 01:42 PM

Thanks Don! I used last year's version to buy some new eyepieces, and made note of which we already have in our collection.

 

Column L for Eye Relief is a real asset for us bespectacled ones.

Amy W



#17 HockeySocky

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 11:22 AM

Thank you so much for building this spreadsheet. I can see that a tremendous amount of time was spent researching the specifications and current prices. Firstly, I am amazed how many of the EP's come from China. I don't know if that's good or bad. Is there any way from this data to judge the quality of the EP's?  Secondly, I find it very useful to turn on Excel's Data Filter function. Then you create a pull-down at the top of each column where you can select specific features that you would like to see, e.g. AFOV's at or above 82°, Eye Relief at or above 17°, or whatever.



#18 Starman1

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 01:18 PM

There is no way from the list to know anything about the quality of the eyepiece.

However, if there is some "key" data missing (like apparent field), that eyepiece is likely aimed at the discount store market and may be a poor eyepiece.

Sometimes, though, the re-seller just expects people to know that info if the eyepiece being sold is "surplus".

 

Sorting by column is the way I use the spreadsheet, too, say, to know what eyepieces of 12mm are 80° or wider.

If you know Excel, and I've used it for years, you can sort by column in a particular order to resort the spreadsheet to suit your purposes.

 

As for origin, if you include China and Taiwan together as "Chinese", almost all eyepieces in the world are made there.

There are a handful of Japanese ones (but few, and getting fewer), one from the US, and a couple from Germany.

Otherwise, we exist in a Chinese world.

 

 

By the Way, Levenhuk is still in business, but is just low in stock at the moment.  They are still soliciting new dealers.


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#19 RonR49

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 10:34 PM

As an older newbie trying to relearn enough to get re-started in this hobby, I've found your spreadsheet very helpful and I want to express my appreciation. Got a new scope but was somewhat overwhelmed with the choices for eyepieces. Using "reviews" on this forum and your sheet really helped me get started. I created a section at the top of the sheet to gather up the listings for everything I've bought so far and the potential options for filling in the gaps. 

 

Thank you you very much. 


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#20 skypilgrim

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 05:05 PM

Wonderful data Don! waytogo.gif

 

Perhaps one to add. I think it's going EOL but it's still available at various places:

 

Vixen NLVW 30mm, 65deg AFOV, 2inch barrel, 22.4mm ER.

 

Sam



#21 Starman1

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 05:15 PM

The NLVW and LVW have been discontinued by Vixen.

There are a few still out there, and often on sale (!), but they are not "current" eyepieces.

Vixen's line-up is now the HRs, SLVs, SSWs and NPLs.



#22 skypilgrim

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 08:18 PM

Ah, figures. I'm low on savings so they'll probably be gone by time I've saved enough!

 

 Thanks Don.



#23 Sika

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 11:30 PM

Don, this is fantastically helpful, especially for a somewhat overwhelmed semi-newbie.

Tons of appreciation for all the effort you've invested. This is one of the things I love about the amateur astro crowd.

SK



#24 aeajr

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Posted 10 September 2017 - 09:07 AM

Don't forget that Don is a vendor of eyepieces.  If you like his guide, don't forget to check out his site http://www.eyepiecesetc.com/  when you do your shopping.


Edited by aeajr, 10 September 2017 - 09:08 AM.

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#25 dpastern

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Posted 30 September 2017 - 04:40 AM

Super stuff Don - thank you!

 

Dave




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