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Looking for binocular dedicated to astronomy

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#1 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:03 PM

Hi,

 

I am currently using a Zeiss 10x40 binocular for astronomy, but honestly sitting in the dark with a $1500+ dollar binocular and putting it down occasionally scares me. At some point I'm probably going to drop it or scratch it.

I plan on keeping the Zeiss for birding only and getting another (cheaper) binocular for astronomy only. I will be using it on a monopod. The APM 10x50 looks interesting (link). It is less money than the Zeiss by far, but is not cheap. 

I like good optics and I can spend the money on the APM, but I am wondering if there is another brand of binocular I should consider?

 

Thanks !



#2 Mark9473

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:06 PM

How about a neck strap for your 10x40?



#3 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:13 PM

I have a neckstrap, but the binocular is mounted on a monopod (in this case with a berlebach wooden platform) and I can't very easily take it off the wooden platform.



#4 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:16 PM

I forgot to mention: I need good eyerelief for use with glasses. The APM seems to have that.



#5 photoracer18

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:18 PM

Vixen/Celestron 11x80. While as heavy as any 80mm bino the lower power means you can lay in a lawn chair or the grass and prop your elbows on your chest and use them for a couple of hours with no bino mount to carry them. Same applies to any 10-11x 60-70mm binos. I have owned 14x70s, 15x70s, 20x80s and now 2 consecutive 11x80s (one was stolen) for the last 2 decades.



#6 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 03:26 PM

11x80, interesting. Wouldn't that exit pupil of almost 8 be wasted on me though? I'm not sure how far my 43 year old eyes still open up.



#7 Mark9473

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 04:27 PM

I have a neckstrap, but the binocular is mounted on a monopod (in this case with a berlebach wooden platform) and I can't very easily take it off the wooden platform.

The binocular support that most easily allows to attach or remove a binocular from a monopod, is the Docter Optics clamp. It's pretty much dedicated to Docter Nobilem binoculars and some porro's from Zeiss Jena. In case you wanted to look for a used model. The clamp is really exceptional though, highly recommended.



#8 dufay

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 04:57 PM

11x80, interesting. Wouldn't that exit pupil of almost 8 be wasted on me though? I'm not sure how far my 43 year old eyes still open up.

 

You could easily measure your dark adapted pupil size with a ruler or caliper while standing in front of a mirror in a dark lit room (it doesn't have to be completely dark). The pupil will expand to its maximum size in a matter of seconds.

 

I am the same age as you (turning 43 next week) and my pupil still dilates to around 8mm. Reading of other people's experiences this doesn't seem to be an exceptional case. You'll find people on this forum in their 70s who still have dark adapted pupil in the region of 7mm.

 

Earlier this year a got a pair of 8x56 binoculars, which I now find myself using as my default pair of binoculars for stargazing. They show stars with a vibrancy unmatched by my other binoculars, all of which have an exit pupil of 5mm and below.



#9 The Ardent

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 04:59 PM

Astronomy: 45 or 90 degree prism

#10 havasman

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 05:03 PM

My Lunt MS 10x50's are the same as the current APM non-ED 10x50's (APM and Lunt were partners then) and I can easily recommend them for optics and build quality. The APM ED's should be even a bit better optically.



#11 aeajr

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 05:25 PM

If you want a steady mounted binocular, perhaps these on a tripod.

https://oberwerk.com...ular-telescope/

 

More hand held and monopod?    Oberwerk

https://oberwerk.com...ries-10-5x70mm/

 

Best Binocular Monopod Around.  Really like mine.

https://oberwerk.com...tion-ball-head/



#12 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:13 PM

You could easily measure your dark adapted pupil size with a ruler or caliper while standing in front of a mirror in a dark lit room (it doesn't have to be completely dark). The pupil will expand to its maximum size in a matter of seconds.

 

I am the same age as you (turning 43 next week) and my pupil still dilates to around 8mm. Reading of other people's experiences this doesn't seem to be an exceptional case. You'll find people on this forum in their 70s who still have dark adapted pupil in the region of 7mm.

 

Earlier this year a got a pair of 8x56 binoculars, which I now find myself using as my default pair of binoculars for stargazing. They show stars with a vibrancy unmatched by my other binoculars, all of which have an exit pupil of 5mm and below.

I just tried measuring my dark adapted pupil size, by standing in front of the mirror with a ruler. I can't really see the ruler all that well in the dark :), If I make it lighter my pupil will narrow. How to solve this problem?



#13 Wallcreeper

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:42 PM

Hmm, tried measuring my pupil again with some more success and it looks pretty close to 7mm. That would open up some interesting possibilities as far as binoculars is concerned. Maybe 7x50 would be interesting? The orion resolux 7x50 looks to be of decent quality with good eye relief.



#14 SMark

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:50 PM

I'm almost 60, and I still reach 7mm. And I love my 7x50, my 8x56, and my 10x70.


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#15 MartinPond

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 01:13 AM

I'm almost 60, and I still reach 7mm. And I love my 7x50, my 8x56, and my 10x70.

Room to move, room for error, easy to place eyes.  

Like sleeping on a double or a queen or king instead of a twin (just enough)..

 

 

I made some 8.5x50s. out of 10x50s.   Even just the 5-->6mm exit pupil bump

  is really pleasant.  Ever notice how the simple 7x50s ER is more than enough

  but the power is a tad low?    Enter the 8.5x50! 


Edited by MartinPond, 13 December 2018 - 01:15 AM.


#16 duck2k

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 10:01 AM

Lot of good bino suggestions here, APM, Lunt (same), Oberwerk, a good neck strap, etc.  Another bino to consider are the Resolux (same as Oberwerk Ultra series).  The 10x50 packs a punch, and has the flat field views.  Weighs just a little over three lbs, but durable.:)

 

https://www.telescop...c/72/p/9544.uts



#17 Wallcreeper

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 11:06 AM

Lot of good bino suggestions here, APM, Lunt (same), Oberwerk, a good neck strap, etc.  Another bino to consider are the Resolux (same as Oberwerk Ultra series).  The 10x50 packs a punch, and has the flat field views.  Weighs just a little over three lbs, but durable.smile.gif

 

https://www.telescop...c/72/p/9544.uts

From reviews it sounds like the 10x50 resolux does not have enough eyerelief for glasses? It looks like the lenses are recessed quite a bit, wasting a lot of eye relief.



#18 Foss

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 11:11 AM

Fujinon FMT-SX 10x50 might be worth considering too.


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#19 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 11:31 AM

11x80, interesting. Wouldn't that exit pupil of almost 8 be wasted on me though? I'm not sure how far my 43 year old eyes still open up.

I'm 70 and my eyes still are closer to 8 mm than to 7 mm.

I currently have 2 pairs of Orion Resolux 70 mm binoculars, a 10,5 x and a 15x. The Resolux's are good quality binoscope with 20 mm of eye relief, reasonably sharp across the field and they operate at the full 70 mm aperture. I spend 7-14 days a month under dark skies.. Theyre around $400 new, Roland Christen thinks enough them, he sells them under the Astro-Physics name.

Anyway my point is this: I much prefer the 15x70s over the 10.5x70's, I just see more with the 15x binos, they go deeper.  This time out, I didn't bother hauling the 10.5's out here, I've spent a fair amount of time with the 15x70s and haven't missed the 10.5's.

 

I am not trying to sell you on the binos, rather I just want to say that even with large dark adapted pupils and dark skies, I, for one, find the greater magnification of the 15x binos to be the clear winner.

Jon


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#20 Wallcreeper

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 12:38 PM

I'm 70 and my eyes still are closer to 8 mm than to 7 mm.

I currently have 2 pairs of Orion Resolux 70 mm binoculars, a 10,5 x and a 15x. The Resolux's are good quality binoscope with 20 mm of eye relief, reasonably sharp across the field and they operate at the full 70 mm aperture. I spend 7-14 days a month under dark skies.. Theyre around $400 new, Roland Christen thinks enough them, he sells them under the Astro-Physics name.

Anyway my point is this: I much prefer the 15x70s over the 10.5x70's, I just see more with the 15x binos, they go deeper.  This time out, I didn't bother hauling the 10.5's out here, I've spent a fair amount of time with the 15x70s and haven't missed the 10.5's.

 

I am not trying to sell you on the binos, rather I just want to say that even with large dark adapted pupils and dark skies, I, for one, find the greater magnification of the 15x binos to be the clear winner.

Jon

Do you mount these 15x70's ? I plan on using the binoculars on a monopod, while seated. My 10x is fine on a monopod. I'm unsure if 15x would be too wobbly for a monopod? 

Also, are you using them with glasses? I have read in several places that the lenses on the 15x70 are so far recessed that the eyerelief is not adequate for use with glasses?


Edited by Wallcreeper, 13 December 2018 - 12:42 PM.


#21 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 03:10 PM

Do you mount these 15x70's ? I plan on using the binoculars on a monopod, while seated. My 10x is fine on a monopod. I'm unsure if 15x would be too wobbly for a monopod? 

Also, are you using them with glasses? I have read in several places that the lenses on the 15x70 are so far recessed that the eyerelief is not adequate for use with glasses?

 

Actually I have been using them hand-held.  I do have a parallelogram mount but I prefer hand held. 

 

But in that context,  I should make it clear that the binoculars are always a companion to a large aperture Dobsonian so they represent a change of pace during a long evening rather than being the primary instrument for an evening. I might just pick them up and look around for a few minutes or I might spend as much as 30 minutes but never more than that. 

 

Jon



#22 Wallcreeper

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 05:37 PM

I have another question about the binocular from my original posting, the APM 10x50 ED APO. It has a listed 20mm of eyerelief, which is great. However in the pictures that I see on the web, the lens appears to be recessed. Has anyone measured the useable eye relief on this binocular?



#23 Rich V.

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 08:12 PM

FWIW, the 16x70 MS ED's eyepieces are also claimed to have 20mm ER.  I measured them at 18mm effective from the inside face of the eyecup around the eye lens.  They could easily share the same eyepieces.

 

Rich



#24 Wallcreeper

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 08:41 PM

FWIW, the 16x70 MS ED's eyepieces are also claimed to have 20mm ER.  I measured them at 18mm effective from the inside face of the eyecup around the eye lens.  They could easily share the same eyepieces.

 

Rich

18mm would work for me. My current binoculars have 16-17mm that is ok. I'll try contacting APM to see if the 10x50 have the same specs as the 16x70.



#25 tmichaelbanks

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Posted 13 December 2018 - 10:33 PM

As a point of reference for the Oberwerk 15x70 Ultras, the OB website specifies 18mm of eye relief.  I have to wear glasses while observing and I have a very asymmetric prescription (i.e., one lens is much thicker than the other).  Despite that, with the eyecups rolled down I can see the entire field if my glasses are right up against the eyepieces.

 

Eye placement can be a little fussy, but once you have it it's no problem maintaining the view  I find that maintaining eye placement is actually a little easier using them handheld for high-elevation targets, but lower than 60-70 degrees they are best mounted.

 

I suspect (but haven't actually tried) many of the other BA8-based 15x70 units from Orion and APM would be similar.




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