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Know what I miss? University Optics Orthoscopics

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49 replies to this topic

#26 scotsman328i

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 04:51 AM

I wouldn't say they are not good, just that when spending $50 on an eyepiece you need to have your level of expectation set first. $50 is not a lot of money for a manufacturer to sell an eyepiece, so there will be cuts in material quality and workmanship that goes into making it.

You may be correct. However for $40 listed, I may try one to see how it is. If I don’t like it, even selling it for half of what I paid is only $20. Not a noticeable loss compared to selling other equipment I’ve sold in the past. 


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#27 MartinPond

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 05:15 AM

Or...

 

Looking at the physical body details, I wonder...

   is this an advance in automation, to bring production back home?

Sooner or later, you have to take China on.

Or perish.


Edited by MartinPond, 19 September 2019 - 05:17 AM.

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#28 jturley80

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 05:42 AM

I owned the 12, 9, 6, and 4mm pieces.

 

Sold them shortly after the announcement from UO that they were closing down for good.

 

One of the decisions I regret most in my life.


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#29 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 06:06 AM

I just bought a pair of 9mm orthoscopic from Agena. Although they aren't volcano top they are Kokusai. So it's pretty much the same as my old UO ortho. Love them on a driven mount!
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#30 csrlice12

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 10:20 AM

I regret I only have 4 UO orthos, the 7 and 9mm HDs and the 9 and 12.5mm OPSs....


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#31 Scott99

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 11:06 AM

No disrespect to the UO volcano-tops, but remember they were superseded by the "UO HD" orthos that had slightly improved coatings - the Fujiyama orthos looked similar to UO HD to me - I would expect them to perform a little better than the volcano tops.  


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#32 bremms

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 12:48 PM

I had some UO's that were replaced with KK Fujiyama's that are now replaced with Tak Abbe Orthos that I think are the best of the lot.

No other current market or historical Ortho interests me. The TAO's are the end of the game for me. They're good.

End of your wallet as well. At the cost of an Ethos or more each I find them too expensive. Had a couple years ago, they were excellent but not really any better than my Meade RGO's and only marginally better than the UO Orthos. Sold them for a couple hundred more than I paid.  Actually, you could buy two used Ethos for the price of one.


Edited by bremms, 19 September 2019 - 01:11 PM.


#33 havasman

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 01:53 PM

End of your wallet as well. At the cost of an Ethos or more each I find them too expensive. Had a couple years ago, they were excellent but not really any better than my Meade RGO's and only marginally better than the UO Orthos. Sold them for a couple hundred more than I paid.  Actually, you could buy two used Ethos for the price of one.

The most expensive TAO is $206USD from Land Sea & Sky (Takahashi America.) Most are $153USD. As Allan said earlier, the price/performance evaluation on these is just off the charts.

 

https://www.takahash...eyepieces/abbe/


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#34 YAOG

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 04:29 PM

I really miss the UO Circle-T volcano top Orthoscopic eyepieces. They gave arguably the sharpest and highest contrast views in my TV76 of the moon, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn that I’ve ever seen. I see many unbranded copies on the internet but I am hesitant to purchase them. I owned the 12.5mm and the 9mm UO Orthos and sold them to help fund the 13 Ethos years ago. I could kick myself for letting them go! 

I don't miss them, I have a full set and for some objects under the right conditions they offer fantastic bang for the buck. But recently they are getting very hard to find in good shape so when you see one buy it! 


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#35 dscarpa

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 04:49 PM

 I noticed the Tak Starbase are fully coated not fully multi coated.  A $50 eyepiece from Tak is surprising. I'm dubious. My 9mm Astro Hutech was around twice that . Tak also recently started selling Starbase 80mm achros. David


Edited by dscarpa, 19 September 2019 - 05:44 PM.

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#36 John Anthony

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 08:15 PM

I have 2 full sets of the UO V-top orthos, I use them in my bino viewer and I like the V-top design, no under cuts except for one 25mm. I like having a piece of UO history, they are worthy orthos and I have other eyepieces that outperform them when it’s critical and seeing permits but honestly it’s more of a sentimental thing.
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#37 Chuck Hards

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 09:00 PM

I can't use the super-short FL models anymore, but like to Barlow the medium and longer-FL models to get the power up there, while giving eye relief a boost at the same time.   I like the UO flat-top "Professional Series" orthos a bit better, though there aren't as many FL options.


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#38 Allan Wade

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 09:39 PM

End of your wallet as well. At the cost of an Ethos or more each I find them too expensive. Had a couple years ago, they were excellent but not really any better than my Meade RGO's and only marginally better than the UO Orthos. Sold them for a couple hundred more than I paid.  Actually, you could buy two used Ethos for the price of one.

As Dick said, I think you have your eyepieces mixed up. I get my Tak Abbes from Hong Kong and can get 4 or 5 for the price of one Ethos.


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#39 Scott99

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 11:37 AM

I can't use the super-short FL models anymore, but like to Barlow the medium and longer-FL models to get the power up there, while giving eye relief a boost at the same time.   I like the UO flat-top "Professional Series" orthos a bit better, though there aren't as many FL options.

Taking it old-school!  lol.gif   Barlowing orthos used to be the way to go for best high power views.  You don't have to use the 6mm and below orthos if you don't like tiny eye lenses.  

 

I did some experiments a few years back with my AP Barcon and orthos versus a few high-end wide fields like Pentax XW & XF, and Tak LE's.  I found that the barlowed orthos had better contrast & overall view than the wide-fields with internal barlows - even when the total number of lens elements was the same.  

 

The diameter of the Barcon is much larger than the tiny negative lenses in the compound eyepieces - could that explain it?  I don't know. 


Edited by Scott99, 20 September 2019 - 11:37 AM.

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#40 Wallyl

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 12:06 PM

I owned the 12, 9, 6, and 4mm pieces.

 

Sold them shortly after the announcement from UO that they were closing down for good.

 

One of the decisions I regret most in my life.

I noticed you have Kellner Circle T EPs.  Years ago I bargained with JWS and bought a set of three at a ridiculous low price. right  after I bought an entire set (8) of the Volcano top Orthos.  Again I bargained w/JWS...I paid for 7.  The Kellners are quite good...they have minor ghosting when used with bright objects.  The Kellner design focuses any dust particles on the bottom of the field lense to sharp focus.  I use a small brush, to clean when necessary.  Can you share your impressions of them? 


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#41 YAOG

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 12:19 PM

Taking it old-school!  lol.gif   Barlowing orthos used to be the way to go for best high power views.  You don't have to use the 6mm and below orthos if you don't like tiny eye lenses.  

 

I did some experiments a few years back with my AP Barcon and orthos versus a few high-end wide fields like Pentax XW & XF, and Tak LE's.  I found that the barlowed orthos had better contrast & overall view than the wide-fields with internal barlows - even when the total number of lens elements was the same.  

 

The diameter of the Barcon is much larger than the tiny negative lenses in the compound eyepieces - could that explain it?  I don't know. 

I think it is still a "thing" though I never stopped doing it with Orthos and Plossl eyepieces when I want to have more comfortable time on target at the eyepiece. I can still use the tiny 4mm and 5mm Orthos but it's a lot easier on the eye and body to use the 7mm, 9mm and 12.5mm orthos and a 2x or 2.5x Barlow or PowerMate. 

 

I have not really compared a Barlowed / PM'd Ortho to a matched naked shorter Ortho because when the air is good I don't want to waste time trying stuff out, I go for the pure minimal glass view. I don't think the difference is all that great but it might be there if you had good enough air long enough to go back and forth enough to see it. Of course once you know it makes a difference... 


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#42 Wallyl

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 01:33 PM

Using a 4 or 5mm Ortho can a bit challenging.  I found a hack...using a short focus EP, you center the object and move your eye away from the EP....it will stay in focus, although you do reduce the actual FOV.  This is best when viewing D-stars and planets....


Edited by Wallyl, 20 September 2019 - 01:43 PM.

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#43 scotsman328i

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 02:07 PM

Using a 4 or 5mm Ortho can a bit challenging.  I found a hack...using a short focus EP, you center the object and move your eye away from the EP....it will stay in focus, although you do reduce the actual FOV.  This is best when viewing D-stars and planets....

Nice tip! waytogo.gif



#44 YAOG

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 03:05 PM

Using a 4 or 5mm Ortho can a bit challenging.  I found a hack...using a short focus EP, you center the object and move your eye away from the EP....it will stay in focus, although you do reduce the actual FOV.  This is best when viewing D-stars and planets....

I like the volcano tops for their eyeball approachability and positioning over the newer flat and recessed HD orthos.   


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#45 scotsman328i

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 04:05 PM

I like the volcano tops for their eyeball approachability and positioning over the newer flat and recessed HD orthos.   

You nailed it! That’s why I loved those volcano tops too. Such an easy viewing position.



#46 Chuck Hards

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 04:44 PM

 

I have not really compared a Barlowed / PM'd Ortho to a matched naked shorter Ortho because when the air is good I don't want to waste time trying stuff out, I go for the pure minimal glass view. I don't think the difference is all that great but it might be there if you had good enough air long enough to go back and forth enough to see it. Of course once you know it makes a difference... 

 

I haven't tried it as much with refractors, but 55+ years of doing it with Newtonians demonstrated to me that a Barlowed eyepiece can be no less sharp than the equivalent focal-length eyepiece alone.  The Barlow must be of high quality or it will drag the eyepiece down with it.   I've found the longer Barlows to be a tad better than the shorties, at least at the lower-cost end of the spectrum.  

 

The Barlowed eyepiece also allows the eye to relax a bit more than when right up against a tiny eye lens on the un-Barlowed equivalent.


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#47 YAOG

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 04:53 PM

No disrespect to the UO volcano-tops, but remember they were superseded by the "UO HD" orthos that had slightly improved coatings - the Fujiyama orthos looked similar to UO HD to me - I would expect them to perform a little better than the volcano tops.  

This is an improvement I think is very hard to see. Certainly not a reason to "upgrade" unless of course you don't have any orthos at all. Starting from scratch I might choose the Takahashi Orthos except for the fact that they have limited focal lengths and Barlowing would be a way of life. Maybe the Tak LEs which seem like a good option also though I have no real experience with them.


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#48 jturley80

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Posted 21 September 2019 - 09:27 AM

TAO seem to be dollar=pound here in the UK, bit disappointing but I would like to snag at least one or two sometime.


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#49 Sky Muse

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 08:25 AM

I have my share...

 

orthoscopics4.jpg

 

...including these wee ones...

 

.965 oculars2b.jpg


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#50 jturley80

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 10:22 AM

I have my share...

 

attachicon.gif orthoscopics4.jpg

 

...including these wee ones...

 

attachicon.gif .965 oculars2b.jpg

Beautiful collection, consider me very jealous:)


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