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Looking for a planetary killer, televue plossl, BCO, Radian, thoughts?

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#1 davinci..

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 12:34 PM

Recently got back into the hobby after about 8 years off, finally got around to fixing my broken 10" lightbridge(astigmatic mirrors.. 3 of them.. long story)

I live in fairly light polluted skies so my nightly viewing is limited to planets.

I'm looking for a planetary killer eyepiece with an emphasis on on axis sharpness and contrast, the best image my scope can produce.

 

I've been looking at the forums and classifieds and came up with some decent ideas that wont break the bank if bought used/new, around $100-$130 range.  I am all aboard the low element good glass train for pristine planetary images.

 

11mm Televue plossl 

10mm Baader classic Ortho 

3mm televue radian(likely used)

 

I like the televue plossl, and BCO for there 4 elements designs, read good things about their sharpness and contrast. fairly inexpensive, people seem to swear by these.

The radian has a couple more elements but has a bit of extra afov, and it wouldn't need to be barlowed.

 

I currently own the following.

 

Meade 5.5mm series 5000 plossl --- which performs very well, probably the best out of the bunch

Baader hyperion 8mm(with fine tuning ring to take it down to 6mm) --- very good image, love the extra afov, love its versatility. 

Burgess optical 3.2mm planetary --- This is one of the original tbm/burgess ones, purchased around 2009? for some reason, this thing is a dog. I've never gotten a good image out of it. soft, washed out. glare. not at all what i expect from the reputation of this eyepiece.  Maybe my scope is too fast for it f4.7, maybe there are some internal reflections going on. no idea.

Meade 15mm qx wide angle --- for some reason this otherwise generic eyepiece is one of my best, suspiciously sharp/contrasty. barlowed down to 7.5 is outperformes the baader.. 

 

None of the above are really known for being dedicated planetary killers, so i'm wondering what's being left on the table, so to speak.

 

I'd like to downsize these to 1 really solid dedicated eyepiece. I'll likely keep the 15mm qx. but the 5.5mm, 8mm, and 3.2mm can be tossed in a blender(sold off).

 

Any thoughts on how the 11mm televue plossl(likely barlowed), the Baader 10mm BCO(again barlowed), or the 3mm Radian might serve me?

 



#2 Luca Brasi

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 01:35 PM

The best planet killer I have ever looked through is the Delos. The sharpness is in a different league. My highest power is the 3.5mm. Despite the popular opinion on exit pupils, I've observed features on Jupiter and Mars at 470x and 0.76 exit pupil...

I couldn't even pull off such a feat with my 3.5mm Nagler!

Maybe the Delite could be just as good or even better. But that is too little AFOV to be manually pushing around in my dobs.
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#3 CeleNoptic

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 02:16 PM

IMO, the best planetary eyepiece for a Dob for a variety of the seeing conditions is a Zoom, e.g. a TVZ3-6, or a Baader 8-24 (Leica... ? etc) plus a good Barlow/Teleextender. Any fixed FL premium eyepiece, e.g. Delos can be a killer just for some sort of certain conditions but it doesn't zoom so you can't choose magnifications dictated by fluctuated seeing. I'm sure even a decent budget Zoom will have an advantage over fixed FL eyepieces unless your observing spot has really steady atmospheric conditions and you know what magnification works best.


Edited by CeleNoptic, 17 September 2019 - 02:21 PM.

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#4 noisejammer

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 03:47 PM

The 10" Lightbridge is an f/5 instrument, so the focal length is ~1270mm. I assume your optics are fair, so let's work on 25x per inch or ~250x. You haven't declared where you live but this would be above average for Toronto.

 

So, let's say 250x is a good start for nights of good seeing, then you need an eyepiece with a focal length of 1270/250 ~= 5mm.

 

That would offer a 1mm exit pupil which is small enough to avoid astigmatism and large enough to avoid issues from floaters.

 

I have a couple of Radians - they are good eyepieces and their tint tends to boost planetary contrast. If memory serves, an 8mm Radian gave me one of my best ever views of Jupiter (however, the seeing was spectacular.) 

 

You already have a 5.5mm and a good 11mm What you seem to need is a decent Barlow. You might want to try the Astrophysics. The now retired BARCON is really good and can be had from the Classifieds.

 

If you decide on an eyepiece, I don't think I'd go for anything shorter than 4mm. The problem is that simple eyepieces tend to have very limited eye relief. You might want to try a Takahashi 5LE or 4TOE - these are a lot more comfortable than regular Plossl types. The 5LE comes up quite frequently in the Classifieds - that's where I got mine. It's a good eyepiece.



#5 SeattleScott

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 04:22 PM

For planetary you can’t really get by with a single dedicated planetary eyepiece unless it is the Nagler Zoom. You need multiple focal lengths to match magnification to the target and seeing.

Tak TOE is probably the best right now, Vixen HR is competitive but the wider FOV in the TOE will be helpful in a manual Dob. The 4 TOE would give you 300x. I can do that sometimes in Seattle.

I had a 8 TV Plossl that was excellent but ER too tight so I sold it. The 11 barlowed would have better ER. Of course you want a good barlow. I suspect the BGO would be similar but no experience.

My Meade 5.5 super Plossl is surprisingly good. Gives my 5LVW a run for its money. No need to trash it.

The Radian should be excellent once you adjust the Insta-adjust. Some people don’t like the hue of their coating for DSO but excellent for planetary. But how often can you hit 400x?

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#6 25585

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 04:36 PM

Delites, Vixen SLV, Takahashi Abbe Orthoscopics.


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#7 CrazyPanda

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 05:06 PM

Recently got back into the hobby after about 8 years off, finally got around to fixing my broken 10" lightbridge(astigmatic mirrors.. 3 of them.. long story)

I live in fairly light polluted skies so my nightly viewing is limited to planets.

I'm looking for a planetary killer eyepiece with an emphasis on on axis sharpness and contrast, the best image my scope can produce.

 

I've been looking at the forums and classifieds and came up with some decent ideas that wont break the bank if bought used/new, around $100-$130 range.  I am all aboard the low element good glass train for pristine planetary images.

 

11mm Televue plossl 

10mm Baader classic Ortho 

3mm televue radian(likely used)

 

I like the televue plossl, and BCO for there 4 elements designs, read good things about their sharpness and contrast. fairly inexpensive, people seem to swear by these.

The radian has a couple more elements but has a bit of extra afov, and it wouldn't need to be barlowed.

 

I currently own the following.

 

Meade 5.5mm series 5000 plossl --- which performs very well, probably the best out of the bunch

Baader hyperion 8mm(with fine tuning ring to take it down to 6mm) --- very good image, love the extra afov, love its versatility. 

Burgess optical 3.2mm planetary --- This is one of the original tbm/burgess ones, purchased around 2009? for some reason, this thing is a dog. I've never gotten a good image out of it. soft, washed out. glare. not at all what i expect from the reputation of this eyepiece.  Maybe my scope is too fast for it f4.7, maybe there are some internal reflections going on. no idea.

Meade 15mm qx wide angle --- for some reason this otherwise generic eyepiece is one of my best, suspiciously sharp/contrasty. barlowed down to 7.5 is outperformes the baader.. 

 

None of the above are really known for being dedicated planetary killers, so i'm wondering what's being left on the table, so to speak.

 

I'd like to downsize these to 1 really solid dedicated eyepiece. I'll likely keep the 15mm qx. but the 5.5mm, 8mm, and 3.2mm can be tossed in a blender(sold off).

 

Any thoughts on how the 11mm televue plossl(likely barlowed), the Baader 10mm BCO(again barlowed), or the 3mm Radian might serve me?

I have the 11mm TV Plossl, 10 BCO, 11mm TV DeLite, and 10 Delos (sold to raise cash for some Ethos)

 

The 11mm TV DeLite is as sharp and contrasty as the 11 TV Plossl, but WAY WAY WAY more comfortable. The extra comfort alone lets me see more through the 11 TV Delite than the 11 TVP. It's very fatiguing to fight the short eye relief of the 11 TVP. You will have more productive sessions through an eye-massaging 11 Delite than an 11 TVP.

 

The 10 Delos bested the 10 BCO for color richness. Jupiter's GRS and cloud bands had richer color in the Delos than the BCO. Both were equally sharp and contrasty.

 

I also own the 7, 9, and 12.5 Fujiyama HD Orthos. 7 and 9 have good sharpness and contrast, 12.5 has poor contrast but good sharpness. I have zero doubts that the 7 and 9 DeLites would be as good or better than the equivalent HD Orthos.

 

If you want outstanding planetary eyepieces with high contrast, low scatter, and excellent sharpness, you can't go wrong with DeLite or Delos if you're willing to put up the cash. The minimum glass options *only* advantage is price, but it comes at the cost of comfort.

 

Maybe a comparison against the Takahashi Abbe Orthos would paint a different picture, but from my experience, chasing photons with minimum glass is folly.


Edited by CrazyPanda, 17 September 2019 - 05:08 PM.


#8 SeattleScott

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 05:24 PM

Well I have an 8 element 8lvw that is very sharp, but I felt the 7T1 (slightly fewer elements I believe) was just a tad sharper. And the 8 TVP a touch sharper than the 7T1. So I feel like there is something to the minimum glass thing, but the difference is subtle, and might not be worth the sacrifice in ER or AFOV (was the case with keeping the Nagler over the Plossl). Granted I didn’t care for my 4mm Abbe Ortho. Couldn’t get a sharp view. I got it used so maybe there was something wrong with it. The HR and TOE are nice because they are extremely sharp, with just five elements, yet they have usable ER at very short focal lengths.

All that said I don’t have much experience with TV Delos/Delite.

Scott

#9 bbqediguana

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 06:43 PM

The 11mm TV DeLite is as sharp and contrasty as the 11 TV Plossl, but WAY WAY WAY more comfortable. The extra comfort alone lets me see more through the 11 TV Delite than the 11 TVP. It's very fatiguing to fight the short eye relief of the 11 TVP. You will have more productive sessions through an eye-massaging 11 Delite than an 11 TVP.

I'm not sure what you're fighting when using a Tele Vue 11mm Plössl - it has 8mm of eye relief which I find personally near perfect, and certainly isn't in the eye crunching range of shorter focal length Plössls. Perhaps there's something about the design that doesn't work with your particular eyes since you do not mention anything about the eye relief of your 7mm Ortho (6.1mm eye relief) or your 9mm Ortho (7.6mm eye relief).

 

My 11mm TVP is one of my favourite eye pieces.

 

Cheers!
 

Rick


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#10 bbqediguana

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 06:49 PM

I think adding a Barlow to either the 11mm Tele Vue Plössl or the 10mm Ortho would defeat any minimal glass advantage they might have - and from what I've read elsewhere modern designs and coatings have rendered that advantage either moot or at least very minor.

 

If I were in your shoes (and I'd love to be - I'd love to have a 10" LightBridge), I'd probably save my pennies and go for a Tele Vue DeLite. It will have a more neutral colour presentation than the Radian, plus it has improvements in design and coatings over the Radian.  Mind you, I have no experience with either of those eyepieces - my opinion is just based on what I've read here on Cloudy Nights - but that's where I'd put my money. smile.gif

 

Good luck!

 

Rick



#11 Miranda2525

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 07:19 PM

Televue Delos.



#12 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 07:27 PM

My two cents:

 

I've owned my 10 inch GSO Dob since 2003, it's never been my "best scope" or my biggest scope but it has been a very good scope and has provided me with some amazing planetary views.  Meade Lightbridge's are manufactured by GSO so there's some common ground.  

 

In my mind, Killer Planetary Views are not about the eyepiece, they're about seeing, they're about the scope and it's optics and they're about careful preparation. With a Dob that means careful collimation and paying careful attention to thermal management (cooldown)  That means setting the scope out at least an hour before sunset and using a fan to cool the mirror and the telescope.  

 

When the seeing is rock solid, when the scope is rock solid stable thermally, when all the little things are taken care of, I get crisp, contrasty, sharp views from my 10 inch F/5 at around 400x.  The exact eyepiece makes a little difference but if the important factors are in line, most any eyepiece will provide very good views.

 

Mention was made of the 3.2mm TMB Planetary.  I have one.  It's a good eyepiece but in a 10 inch F/5 Dob, you are looking at 390x.  For most observers in the Northern latitudes, Jupiter and Saturn are not far enough above the horizon to support that kind of magnification, even if the seeing overhead is stable. I am in the most southwest corner of the continental US at about 33 degrees latitude.  Both Jupiter and Saturn never quite reach 35 degrees elevation.  That's barely high enough to have a reasonable chance of a good view.  If you're 10 degrees north of me, figure Jupiter and Saturn are never more than 25 degrees above the horizon.  That's a lot of air to look through, a lot of most certainly disturbed air. 

 

I think the most important thing about eyepieces for viewing the planets is have a sufficient number of them so that I can match the magnification to the conditions, the seeing, the thermal stability of the scope at the moment.  There will be a night when that 3.2 mm TMB Planetary will provide stunning planetary views but most nights, it will over magnify the planet and the view will be fuzzy and not sharp at all.  Generally covering a range from about 175x to around 400x is reasonable viewing the planets with a 10 inch Dob.

 

That's how it works for me. 

 

Jon 


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#13 Traveler

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 09:45 PM

I don't know if they are killer ep's  but i use on planets my first gen.TV Radians (8, 5 and 3), my BGO 7mm (this little fellow always impresses me) and since a couple of months my TV 3-6 zoom.

 

The zoom gives very nice views but i use it now more often because the zoom can adjust the magnification depending on the seeing conditions. A nice thing because the planets here are very low above the horizon. 


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#14 MartinPond

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 10:22 PM

I think adding a Barlow to either the 11mm Tele Vue Plössl or the 10mm Ortho would defeat any minimal glass advantage they might have - and from what I've read elsewhere modern designs and coatings have rendered that advantage either moot or at least very minor.

 

....

 

This has not been my experience.

The aberration of a Barlow is sub-minuscule, in optical point of fact.

The spacing to the simple eyepiece is long, so there are no near-field effects.

Minimal glass aspects, whatever they may be, are not altered.

 

This leaves contrast.

A good Barlow with decent lining, to absorb scattering can actually increase

  the contrast.   That seems to happen  with the Tri-Mag and 

   especially with the ES 3x focal extender.

Many also swear by the the X-Cel LX Barlow, which has a light-trap

  section in it This is why I don't consider a good multiplier

  to mess up a minimal-glass eyepiece.

 

It is awkward to add a long or heavy Barlow/Extender to an eyepiece that is

already big, but no problem when added to an eyepiece of 5-6 elements or less..

(that does not contain a negative section)


Edited by MartinPond, 17 September 2019 - 10:25 PM.


#15 CounterWeight

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 10:44 PM

The only ep's I'd call 'killer' are the old limited run ZAOI and II which are no longer made and prohibitively expensive when found.  Comparing to a slew of others they had the least scatter, this tested on best nights here.  Remarkably using my inexpensive shorty Barlow and Brandon's came in 2nd... the 8mm Brandon w/ Barlow improved eye relief and was really a competitor to the ZAOII, which amazed me. It was very close but I felt the color rendition in the Brandon a little tiny bit off center and a tiny amount of scatter.  For the price difference I considered it an equal. Much better than my Plossl, BGO, UO ortho's... Pretty much everything else I've had exhibits some amount of scatter some much more than others, Barlowing the Plossl and others helped ...  it's a useful exercise to do if don't mind the effort.  If scatter does not bother you then there are a lot of decent ep's out there and I'd consider eye relief if that matters to you.



#16 Starlease

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 12:02 AM

The number one planetary eyepiece you buy new today are the Takahashi TOE.  Only in 4, 3.3 and 2.5mm so far.

 

Next best buy new today are TV Delites which are a little better than TV Delos and Pentax XW.  All these work great in f/5 scopes.


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#17 cimar

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 12:33 AM

Hi, years ago I used wide angle eyepieces for deep sky with my former apo and dobsonian. For planetary observation I experimented around with Orthos and Plössls and preferred Orthos like BGO and BCO over Plössls and the UWAs. Since I have some Delos, I prefer them and use them for deep sky as well as for planetary and sold all the Orthos. There are really great eyepieces.


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#18 CrazyPanda

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 07:13 AM

I'm not sure what you're fighting when using a Tele Vue 11mm Plössl - it has 8mm of eye relief which I find personally near perfect, and certainly isn't in the eye crunching range of shorter focal length Plössls. Perhaps there's something about the design that doesn't work with your particular eyes since you do not mention anything about the eye relief of your 7mm Ortho (6.1mm eye relief) or your 9mm Ortho (7.6mm eye relief).

 

My 11mm TVP is one of my favourite eye pieces.

 

Cheers!
 

Rick

My 7mm Fuji ortho is easier to look through than my 11 TVP, and my 5mm Series 3000 Plossl is easier to look through than my 8mm TVP. I simply do not believe TV's eye relief numbers on their Plossls.

If I rip the rubber eyeguard off the 11 TVP entirely, it's almost as easy to look through as the 9mm Fuji, but because it's a pain to keep taking the eye guard off and putting it back on (else the cap doesn't stay on), I leave it on, and thus it's always a pain to look through.

 

I hate eye guards as much as people hate undercuts, and the fact that the eye guards on TV Plossls are so stiff they might as well be made of concrete, they are just a recipe for inducing vibrations into the scope while trying to look through them.


Edited by CrazyPanda, 18 September 2019 - 07:16 AM.

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#19 STEEL

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 08:17 AM

For several years I had the Zeiss set abbe II + barlow Zeiss, TMB SMC 5mm and Pentax SMC ortho 7mm and I tested them well between them. I compared the Televue Delite 3,4,5mm and the Takahashi TOE set with the takahashi FC-100DL. Both in the central field and at the edge of the field I have not detected any sharpness differences in the images. The TV Delite are better on the side reflections and are absolutely sharp and neutral like my best possessed eyepieces.


Edited by STEEL, 18 September 2019 - 11:24 AM.


#20 csrlice12

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 10:44 AM

On your budget, someone already mentioned a used TeleVue 7T1 Nagler.  You could do a lot worse, and its a good dso eyepiece too.  Not big, not heavy...just one of those eyepieces where everything came together right.  

 

Your other option may be to save up some more and get a 4" apo, which would compliment your dob well.  On a really tight budget find a used F10 C4/102 XLT and other rebrands.  While achromats, the perform extremely well.



#21 Starman1

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 12:05 PM

Recently got back into the hobby after about 8 years off, finally got around to fixing my broken 10" lightbridge(astigmatic mirrors.. 3 of them.. long story)

I live in fairly light polluted skies so my nightly viewing is limited to planets.

I'm looking for a planetary killer eyepiece with an emphasis on on axis sharpness and contrast, the best image my scope can produce.

 

I've been looking at the forums and classifieds and came up with some decent ideas that wont break the bank if bought used/new, around $100-$130 range.  I am all aboard the low element good glass train for pristine planetary images.

 

11mm Televue plossl 

10mm Baader classic Ortho 

3mm televue radian(likely used)

 

I like the televue plossl, and BCO for there 4 elements designs, read good things about their sharpness and contrast. fairly inexpensive, people seem to swear by these.

The radian has a couple more elements but has a bit of extra afov, and it wouldn't need to be barlowed.

 

I currently own the following.

 

Meade 5.5mm series 5000 plossl --- which performs very well, probably the best out of the bunch

Baader hyperion 8mm(with fine tuning ring to take it down to 6mm) --- very good image, love the extra afov, love its versatility. 

Burgess optical 3.2mm planetary --- This is one of the original tbm/burgess ones, purchased around 2009? for some reason, this thing is a dog. I've never gotten a good image out of it. soft, washed out. glare. not at all what i expect from the reputation of this eyepiece.  Maybe my scope is too fast for it f4.7, maybe there are some internal reflections going on. no idea.

Meade 15mm qx wide angle --- for some reason this otherwise generic eyepiece is one of my best, suspiciously sharp/contrasty. barlowed down to 7.5 is outperformes the baader.. 

 

None of the above are really known for being dedicated planetary killers, so i'm wondering what's being left on the table, so to speak.

 

I'd like to downsize these to 1 really solid dedicated eyepiece. I'll likely keep the 15mm qx. but the 5.5mm, 8mm, and 3.2mm can be tossed in a blender(sold off).

 

Any thoughts on how the 11mm televue plossl(likely barlowed), the Baader 10mm BCO(again barlowed), or the 3mm Radian might serve me?

CN posters tend to make mountains out of molehills.  The truth is, where on-axis details on planets are concerned, Seeing is King.

That assumes you have done everything you can to eliminate "local" seeing effects, i.e. collimated scope, cooled to the ambient temperature,

not looking at a planet directly over a roof that bleeds heat all night long, not setting up on concrete where heat rising from the surface can spoil the view,

looking at a time of the night when seeing is better, and not looking at the planet too low in the atmosphere (like below a 30° altitude).

About that last one: you may not be able to do anything about that now that Jupiter and Saturn are low, but at least try to look at them when they are near or crossing the meridian.

 

Then, observe often.  You can't catch the hours and days of good seeing when you aren't observing.  The differences in seeing from hour to hour, night to night, and sometimes

from minute to minute simply swamp the differences between eyepieces.  With the same scope and same eyepieces, I have seen so much detail on Jupiter it looked like a Christopher Go image

and I have seen Jupiter so blurred that the two dark equatorial bands were all that was visible.  The difference was seeing, that's all.

 

You can spend more on eyepieces if you like, but I think many of the extremely positive views about any eyepiece for planetary viewing relate more to the serendipity of experiencing good seeing than anything else.

 

If you learn how to read weather maps, you can even predict good seeing and be there when it is best.

Some reading:

http://www.cloudynig...observing-r1396
http://www.cloudynig...udy-night-r1413

http://www.cloudynig...observing-r1436


Edited by Starman1, 18 September 2019 - 12:05 PM.

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#22 davinci..

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 12:41 PM

CN posters tend to make mountains out of molehills.  The truth is, where on-axis details on planets are concerned, Seeing is King.

That assumes you have done everything you can to eliminate "local" seeing effects, i.e. collimated scope, cooled to the ambient temperature,

not looking at a planet directly over a roof that bleeds heat all night long, not setting up on concrete where heat rising from the surface can spoil the view,

looking at a time of the night when seeing is better, and not looking at the planet too low in the atmosphere (like below a 30° altitude).

About that last one: you may not be able to do anything about that now that Jupiter and Saturn are low, but at least try to look at them when they are near or crossing the meridian.

 

Then, observe often.  You can't catch the hours and days of good seeing when you aren't observing.  The differences in seeing from hour to hour, night to night, and sometimes

from minute to minute simply swamp the differences between eyepieces.  With the same scope and same eyepieces, I have seen so much detail on Jupiter it looked like a Christopher Go image

and I have seen Jupiter so blurred that the two dark equatorial bands were all that was visible.  The difference was seeing, that's all.

 

You can spend more on eyepieces if you like, but I think many of the extremely positive views about any eyepiece for planetary viewing relate more to the serendipity of experiencing good seeing than anything else.

 

That has definitely been my experience as well. I was under the impression this was common knowledge.

 

Just last night I setup shop just as the sun was setting, collimated the scope, and swung it over to jupiter.  It was looking quite good and steady under the 5.5mm at ~220x, excited for the night, i went back inside for an hour to watch the rest of the hockey game and let the scope full cool.  Came back out, and the seeing had gone to hell.  Soft garbled mess even in the 8mm and 15mm. Likely a function of Jupiter diving for the horizon and the rapid temperature change associated with the sun having set.  Either way, I let out a disappointing sigh, packed it all up and went back inside.  The sky is a fickle creature at best.

 

My concern is "when" the conditions are just right and the seeing is great the best i can throw at the sky, is a hyperion or generic mid level meade eyepiece.  Hence my comment "I wonder what's being left on the table".  I don't have anything that can really eek out the last little hints of detail and clarity when the stars align so to speak and the seeing is just right.  I don't know what I'm missing, or even "if" im missing out on anything by having fairly entry level eyepieces. 

 

I'm looking for thoughts on really good glass, for when seeing is really good. In my price range of around $100-$130.



#23 Eddgie

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 01:48 PM

In my opinion the best thing to use for planets is a binoviewer with a pair of zoom eyepieces. My experience has been that even an inexpensive binoviewer with inexpensive zooms is much better for planetary observing than the most expensive eyepieces money can buy.

 

Two eyes are better at resolving fine, low contrast detail than one. 

 

The zooms give you the ability to match your power to seeing conditions and since the best views of the session will almost always be found during those often brief moments of improved seeing, the zooms let you ramp up the magnification very quickly to exploit those precious moments.  Even the most expensive eyepiece in the world is useless unless it is in the eyepiece holder during those moments when it is going to give the most detail, which is almost always going to be during those short periods where the sky has settled.

 

  

The binoviewer and zooms in this picture cost a total of about $210.  I get better views with this than with any single focal lenght eyepiece I have ever owned. 

Attached Thumbnails

  • BVZ.jpg

Edited by Eddgie, 18 September 2019 - 01:50 PM.

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#24 dan_h

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 02:51 PM

 

My concern is "when" the conditions are just right and the seeing is great the best i can throw at the sky, is a hyperion or generic mid level meade eyepiece.  Hence my comment "I wonder what's being left on the table".  I don't have anything that can really eek out the last little hints of detail and clarity when the stars align so to speak and the seeing is just right.  I don't know what I'm missing, or even "if" im missing out on anything by having fairly entry level eyepieces. 

 

I'm looking for thoughts on really good glass, for when seeing is really good. In my price range of around $100-$130.

I don;t have pristine skies and I do not observe 100+ nights a year. In my life I have never seen planetary detail with one eyepiece that I could not see with a similar focal length eyepiece from my kit. I have a collection of Kellners, Orthos, Plossls, Erfles, and a few Naglers to boot.  I have chased the "better views"  and have never been overwhelmed by the results with any one eyepiece. Comfort, eye relief, FOV, ease of focus etc may be different but never did an eyepiece leave something on the table that another picked up. This has been true for Lunar targets, double stars, and planetary details.  Maybe it would be different if I lived in an area with exceptional seeing but I have traveled a little and have my doubts about this.  

 

Of course I have had some very poor performers that may very well have had lesser planetary views but these were always plagued with problems such as bad astigmatism off axis, lateral color, terrible distortion or other troubles so I never considered them really usable at any level. 

 

Most nights it is as Starman1 has stated. Seeing is King. Only when seeing and climatization are perfect do optics come into play. And primary optics completely overshadow the differences in eyepieces when it comes to visible details. 

 

dan


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#25 bbqediguana

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 06:06 PM

My 7mm Fuji ortho is easier to look through than my 11 TVP, and my 5mm Series 3000 Plossl is easier to look through than my 8mm TVP. I simply do not believe TV's eye relief numbers on their Plossls.

If I rip the rubber eyeguard off the 11 TVP entirely, it's almost as easy to look through as the 9mm Fuji, but because it's a pain to keep taking the eye guard off and putting it back on (else the cap doesn't stay on), I leave it on, and thus it's always a pain to look through.

 

I hate eye guards as much as people hate undercuts, and the fact that the eye guards on TV Plossls are so stiff they might as well be made of concrete, they are just a recipe for inducing vibrations into the scope while trying to look through them.

Ah! The rubber eyecups - that might explain it. You are right, they are super stiff. I do think that a person's facial structure can aid or hurt the ability to use shorter eye relief eyepieces. My eye sockets appear to be optimally set up to use the Tele Vues - I love using all of them including the 8mm and the 11mm. My Fujiyama 6mm Ortho is also very usable but I really do wish it had an eyecup - even if it was super stiff.




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