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Light Pollution FIlters

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16 replies to this topic

#1 patindaytona

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 07:01 PM

Are they worth it? I see one on Amazon for $20



#2 chrysalis

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 07:08 PM

For me they provide minimal improvement in viewing.



#3 Jim Waters

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 07:11 PM

Depends on may factors.  Your scope (type/size), visual and/or photographic, eyepiece size, where you observe and the LP in that area ...etc.

 

Its very likely that you will waste you money on a $20 filter.

 

Need much more information.


Edited by Jim Waters, 15 August 2019 - 07:13 PM.

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#4 cookjaiii

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 07:15 PM

Broad spectrum LED lights have rendered them practically useless for visual.  Unless you have a problem specifically with Mercury and sodium lighting, save your money.  

 

I don't know about their effectiveness for use in imaging.

 

With that said, I read that some observers like them for increasing contrast of features of Jupiter.  But that has nothing to do with their function as light pollution filters.


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#5 N3p

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:05 PM

I have to disagree cookjaiii, the narrow band filters are still far from useless.  I use mine regularly close to domes of light, full of white LED spectrum and my filters are still very effective on nebulae, amazing on many of them. I am talking about the DGM NPBs in my case, good quality but affordable.

 

The 2" and 1.25", are important tools for me, especially the 2", they enhance the Veil incredibly against no filters at all.

 

A 20$ light pollution filter will most likely be the waste of a $20 bill.



#6 ShaulaB

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:20 PM

Rather than browsing Amazon, try visiting sites of reputable astronomy vendors. Who are they? Astronomics, Agena Astro, High Point Scientific, OPT, B&H Photo, and others in the US. Quality stuff does not come cheap.

 

Color filters for observing planetary detail run about $12.



#7 Napp

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:22 PM

Those cheap filters are pretty much useless.  Good quality narrow band filters can help with specific types of nebulae but not in general when you include clusters, galaxies and nebulae in general.  In fact narrow band filters are more effective in dark skies but once again on specific types of targets.  Bottom line, you get what you pay for.  Quality narrow band filters help with some targets in light polluted skies but really show their worth in dark skies.  Three important documents when considering filters:

 

https://www.prairiea...ep-sky-objects/

 

https://www.prairiea...common-nebulae/

 

https://www.cloudyni...19#entry9290646


Edited by Napp, 15 August 2019 - 09:25 PM.


#8 cookjaiii

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:22 PM

I agree that narrow band filters improve ones ability to see nebulae, and they are very effective at that, but narrow band filters are a different animal vs light pollution filters.

 

Light pollution filters are designed to block only narrow ranges of wavelengths, specifically the emission wavelengths of the now-obsolete sodium and mercury lamps while letting through the majority of the visible spectrum.  By contrast, narrow band filters block the majority of the visible spectrum while letting through a few narrow ranges of wavelengths emitted by nebulae.  



#9 Jond105

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:24 PM

Are they worth it? I see one on Amazon for $20

$20 gets you what you pay for. Which I’m guessing is a Skyglow type one. If it’s a lot of light pollution, you need a much better one. But understand, they dim the view ever so slightly. I had a skyglow and ultrablock. I now have none. It makes Orion pop, and that’s about it in heavily polluted areas. So, think of your skies. If you can’t see many nebula without the filter, it’s going to be hard to do anymore. Bortles 9 white light zone of Detroit for me. 



#10 Starman1

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 12:45 PM

Are they worth it? I see one on Amazon for $20

First, read this post:

https://www.cloudyni...have/?p=9576214

What you should get from it is that there is no such thing as a light pollution reduction filter, per se, though some of the narrowest filters can do that, just not for all objects.

There are only filters that can enhance your view of certain objects.

 

In my post, I describe each type of object and how to improve the view of that type of object in a light-polluted environment.

 

Ultimately, what helps for nearly every object in the sky except planets and Moon is simply to get you and your scope farther from city lights.

And, don't observe when the Moon is in the sky.

But, failing that, nebulae can be helped by using a narrowband (also called UHC-type) filter.  That is about as good as you can do in a city environment.

Which probably explains why that is the best-selling type of filter for retailers.

 

The so-called LPR filters have their place to slightly improve contrast on some objects when used at dark-sky sites.

But don't waste your money on one thinking they will help with bad light pollution--they won't.



#11 Araguaia

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 12:59 PM

How far from the LP can you drive for $20?


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#12 Stardust Dave

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 01:13 PM

Far !

Up this way $20 is 4.5 gallons.

 

My truck gets 10mpg , and 4.5 gallons gets one from a Bortle 3ish to a solid Bortle 2 and about 3000' plus elevation above home location heading N.

 

Being on inner Coast range , there is basically nothing N and E of me - but bliss. 

$20 in this case will get me a full grade darker sky and further away from the 48.71 p/mi² population density.

 

Have lived in places where $20 wouldn't get you out of the area's light dome.


Edited by Stardust Dave, 20 August 2019 - 01:14 PM.


#13 Starman1

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 04:19 PM

Far !

Up this way $20 is 4.5 gallons.

 

My truck gets 10mpg , and 4.5 gallons gets one from a Bortle 3ish to a solid Bortle 2 and about 3000' plus elevation above home location heading N.

 

Being on inner Coast range , there is basically nothing N and E of me - but bliss. 

$20 in this case will get me a full grade darker sky and further away from the 48.71 p/mi² population density.

 

Have lived in places where $20 wouldn't get you out of the area's light dome.

At current prices for premium gas that works in my turbo-charged car, and with my typical highway mileage, I can get 160 miles on $20 of gas.

That puts me in mag.21.6 skies, which is quite reasonable considering my backyard varies from 16.8-17.8 on nights of no moon.

I've gotten home from there (120 miles out) on less than 3 gallons of gas (slightly downhill all the way).  10mpg?  Is that still legal?lol.gif


Edited by Starman1, 20 August 2019 - 04:20 PM.


#14 Stardust Dave

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 06:58 PM

"I've gotten home from there (120 miles out) on less than 3 gallons of gas (slightly downhill all the way).   10mpg?  Is that still legal?"

Wow, that's some mpg there...

 

Yes it passes emissions smile.gif , no smog check requirement here. 

It's a V10 F250 Super-duty 8' long-bed. A fine 2WD sled it is, low load height.

 

I have to tow a TT and a boat occasionally with the truck.

May seem impractical ,however  the vehicle is used less than 1000 miles a year avg. 

Starting point being in good sky keep travel cost down.


Edited by Stardust Dave, 20 August 2019 - 06:58 PM.


#15 Starman1

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 09:06 PM

I was just yanking your chain.
The right tool for the right job is always the best idea.
However, some of the new trucks could double your mileage, and it's expensive to fill up that big tank.

Edited by Starman1, 20 August 2019 - 09:06 PM.


#16 dmcnally

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Posted Yesterday, 08:35 AM

I was just yanking your chain.
The right tool for the right job is always the best idea.
However, some of the new trucks could double your mileage, and it's expensive to fill up that big tank.

Yeah, but have you seen the price tags on the new trucks.  You will have to do a lot of driving before you reach the break even point and start saving money.

 

Clear Skies,

Dave


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#17 Stardust Dave

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Posted Yesterday, 11:15 AM

"I was just yanking your chain."

smile.gif




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