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Eyepieces for Skywatcher 120 ProED?

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#1 TerryD23

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 07:00 AM

Hi folks! I'm a SCT guy that just picked up my first refractor,  a Skywatcher 120 ProED. I'm wondering what other users have found to be their favorite optimal eyepiece(s) for this scope?

 

Thanks!

 

 


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#2 wrvond

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 07:43 AM

For planetary I usually start with the 11mm Nagler, then work my way down in focal length to find the maximum magnification seeing will allow.

I haven't tried looking for any DSOs with it yet. With the EPs I own, I imagine I would start with my 32mm Plossl and then try the 24mm Panoptic to see how that would work.

I'm considering adding a longer focal length EP for DSOs, but at this point I'm not sure what that would be. I guess it might be a 55mm Plossl but I'm not really sure yet.


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#3 SeaBee1

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 07:49 AM

Good morning Terry! I have that scope mounted on an AVX. From my sig line, you can see I use the Astro-Tech Paradigm eyepieces. These are good eyepieces, but not premium, of course. Adequate? Yes they are. And for the price, I find it hard to justify the more pricey offerings from ES and TV. I am not convinced the additional cost would equal a significantly better view. I may elect to find out one day... but not today...

 

My favorite for using with my SW120 ED is the 12mm, followed by the 5mm. I use the 25mm as a finder eyepiece. I have also the 3.2mm, but have only had occasion to use it a couple times when the seeing was exceptional... but oh what a view! I was splitting some very close doubles with it and the 3.2mm did an excellent job. I have also used it on Jupiter when the seeing was good. Most of the time however, my average seeing conditions put the 3.2mm out of commission. I think it is still worth having for those exceptional nights.

 

As a general rule, all of the Paradigms get some use, depending on the conditions, but the work horses are the 25, the 12, and the 5.

 

Good hunting!

 

CB


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#4 Jond105

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:19 AM

My line up for my 120Ed is as follows....

 

It’s my only scope and I love the set I have. I’ll be adding a good 3.5mm soon an that will complete my set. Congrats on the scope. I absolutely love mine

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#5 Jond105

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:27 AM

I should have said this, my set, Seabee’s set, wrvond set, they’ll all work fine in the scope. I prefer widefield due to my taking into Alt Az viewing over my motorized GEM viewing. Any good eyepiece will work fine with this amazing scope. 


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#6 jay.i

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:01 PM

For deep sky, the 30mm ES82 (as Jon shows above) can't be beat for 30x, 2.7deg TFOV, and a bright 4mm exit pupil.

 

For planetary, I've really liked the 5mm DeLite for 180x and a 0.67mm exit pupil, small but generally big & bright enough that floaters don't annoy me. I definitely like to push the power on good nights of seeing. I use binoviewers for all planetary and lunar viewing so the setup is different, but I'm able to go to lower exit pupils without as many problems from floaters since I can use two eyes. I would even go to as much as 300x (3mm eyepiece in mono mode) with a 0.4mm exit pupil, if the seeing was good enough for it. I would expect the image to be pretty dim, with not as much color saturation as I'd like, but surely lots of detail can be seen at that exit pupil, at 64x/inch. I would not go beyond that though, for planetary/lunar use.

 

30mm ES82 and the 5mm DeLite get my thumbs up, as they are both often useful (in their respective wheelhouses, DSO v.s. planetary), and produce high quality views.


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#7 25585

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:18 PM

The ES92s, 12mm & 17mm both 2". Baader Morpheus range generally - all 1.25", and APM 30mm Ultra Flat Field. Get a good diagonal like the Baader mirror or prism BBHS models.


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#8 macdonjh

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:45 PM

I am not convinced the additional cost would equal a significantly better view. 

It would so, and to say otherwise is heresy.  Any more talk like that and you're sure to get your Eye Piece Snob license revoked. smile.gif poke.gif

 

TerryD23,

 

One of the advantages of refractors is easier eye piece selection.  There's no central obstruction so you don't have to worry about low magnification making the shadow of the secondary visible.  Even an exit pupil larger than 8mm may not be a big deal to you.  I know with my very different 6" f/12 achromat I use everything from a 50mm Konig to Naglers (22mm - 9mm) to Radians (8mm and 6mm), and Plossls and orthos prior those.  You may need more modern eye pieces for your SkyWatcher; my f/12 is pretty forgiving.

 

If I could just figure out a way to look through my refractor with my left eye and my bigger scope with my right eye simultaneously...


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#9 TerryD23

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 01:03 PM

A sincere thanks to all for your valued input.

 

Given my current eyepiece selection (below) I'm considering adding either a 12.5mm or 10mm in a 2" to start off. Been looking on-line and I see these "1.25 in & 2 in" eyepieces. I have no experience with the 1.25 & 2" combo pieces. Am I giving anything up by going that way? Separately, is there any benefit of a 1 1/4" over a 2"? Going forward I'm thinking of only getting 2". Just seems easier on these old 63 yr old eyes. Am I missing something by doing that?

 

Thanks much


Edited by TerryD23, 16 October 2019 - 01:26 PM.


#10 wrvond

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 02:15 PM

A sincere thanks to all for your valued input.

 

Given my current eyepiece selection (below) I'm considering adding either a 12.5mm or 10mm in a 2" to start off. Been looking on-line and I see these "1.25 in & 2 in" eyepieces. I have no experience with the 1.25 & 2" combo pieces. Am I giving anything up by going that way? Separately, is there any benefit of a 1 1/4" over a 2"? Going forward I'm thinking of only getting 2". Just seems easier on these old 63 yr old eyes. Am I missing something by doing that?

 

Thanks much

In your place I'd be looking for a 5mm wide angle (72 degrees or more). You've already got the low power and the mid power, time for some high power viewing.

There's no point in getting a 2" in less than 17mm. The eyepieces you see with the dual barrels are for convenience so you don't have to switch back and forth with the barrel adapter.



#11 TerryD23

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 02:32 PM

There's no point in getting a 2" in less than 17mm.

 

Why is that?   Thx



#12 Jond105

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 02:34 PM

Well technically you wouldn’t need anything below a 14mm in 2”, if you went with 100 degree eyepieces. The FOV in the focal length of the eyepiece determines whether or not it is housed in a 2” or 1.25”. Though all 1.25” eyepieces  can be skirted with a 2” skirt in order to help not have to deal with adapters. 


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#13 John Huntley

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 04:48 PM

I use eyepieces ranging from a 40mm 68 degree 2 inch for a 3 degree true field at 22.5x right up to a 3mm for 300x with my ED120. Most of my eyepieces are Tele Vue or Pentax but less expensive ones do well too at the F/7.5 focal ratio of the scope.

 

Most of my planetary observing with the ED120 is done at between 180x and 257x with Pentax XW eyepieces.


Edited by John Huntley, 16 October 2019 - 04:49 PM.

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#14 russell23

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 05:24 PM

Hi folks! I'm a SCT guy that just picked up my first refractor,  a Skywatcher 120 ProED. I'm wondering what other users have found to be their favorite optimal eyepiece(s) for this scope?

 

Thanks!

My favorite eyepieces I've used with the SW120ED are:

 

30mm APM UFF

18.2mm DeLite

14mm Delos

9mm Morpheus

6.5mm Morpheus

7mm XW

5mm DeLite

 

3x TV barlow

1.6x Nikon barlow


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#15 Gary Riley

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 06:26 PM

The following are eyepieces I use:
ES 24 68, ES 16 68, ES 11 82, ES 8.8 82, ES 6.7 82, and Meade SWA 5.5 82. I also use a Celestron Ultima 2x 1.25 inch Barlow with these eyepieces.
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#16 SteveG

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 09:42 PM

As you can see from the replies, any set of quality eyepieces (across the entire focal range) will perform well and be useful in this scope. You are really going to enjoy the crystal clear views that you can get, with much less cool-down time. Still, you are up north. I suggest at least 30 minutes when coming out of a warm house.


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#17 macdonjh

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:25 PM

Why is that?   Thx

It has to do with the minimum diameter of the field stop (the aperture at the "inlet" end of the eye piece) for a given focal length and apparent field of view (AFOV).  Some examples:

 

A 32mm Plossl is the longest focal length possible with 52o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

A 31mm Nagler is the longest focal length possible with 82o AFOV and a 2" barrel.

A 24mm Panoptic is the longest focal length possible with 68o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

The 22mm Nagler has 82o AFOV, but requires a 2" barrel.

A 16mm Nagler is the longest focal length possible with 82o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

The 17mm Nagler has 82o AFOV, but requires a 2" barrel.

 

So you have lots of choices at 10mm and 12.5mm without adding the expense of a 2" barrel.

 

You might have seen something like the 12mm Nagler that has a 1-1/4" / 2" barrel.  The 1-1/4" barrel is required.  The 2" "collar" is included simply as a convenience: so you can use your eye piece with either 1-1/4" or 2" focusers/ diagonals without a separate adapter.


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#18 ris242

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 12:14 AM

My line up for my 120Ed is as follows....

 

It’s my only scope and I love the set I have. I’ll be adding a good 3.5mm soon an that will complete my set. Congrats on the scope. I absolutely love mine

Would you gain a lot from a 3.5?

or are you thinking that’s the maximum limit of mag in a 50x per inch situation so you want one.



#19 Jond105

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 04:16 AM

Would you gain a lot from a 3.5?
or are you thinking that’s the maximum limit of mag in a 50x per inch situation so you want one.


I would gain so much on a 3.5mm Nagler. I know I have some good nights to push it to that since I’ve tested it out with a paradigm 3.2mm. Now I just want wider. It’s mainly for planetary and doubles for myself

#20 wrvond

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:53 AM

Would you gain a lot from a 3.5?

or are you thinking that’s the maximum limit of mag in a 50x per inch situation so you want one.

I routinely use my 3.5N and occasionally use the 2.5N. This scope responds very well to high magnification.

Even in poor seeing, if you are patient there will often be a break with really good seeing, having that short EP in there, or close at hand, is awesome then.

 

 

It has to do with the minimum diameter of the field stop (the aperture at the "inlet" end of the eye piece) for a given focal length and apparent field of view (AFOV).  Some examples:

 

A 32mm Plossl is the longest focal length possible with 52o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

A 31mm Nagler is the longest focal length possible with 82o AFOV and a 2" barrel.

A 24mm Panoptic is the longest focal length possible with 68o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

The 22mm Nagler has 82o AFOV, but requires a 2" barrel.

A 16mm Nagler is the longest focal length possible with 82o AFOV and a 1-1/4" barrel.

The 17mm Nagler has 82o AFOV, but requires a 2" barrel.

 

So you have lots of choices at 10mm and 12.5mm without adding the expense of a 2" barrel.

 

You might have seen something like the 12mm Nagler that has a 1-1/4" / 2" barrel.  The 1-1/4" barrel is required.  The 2" "collar" is included simply as a convenience: so you can use your eye piece with either 1-1/4" or 2" focusers/ diagonals without a separate adapter.

This is the best explanation ever!  waytogo.gif



#21 macdonjh

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:36 AM

 

This is the best explanation ever!  waytogo.gif

Glad it was helpful.


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#22 TerryD23

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:44 PM

Thanks all! Ended up going with the Baader Morpheus 6.5 / 76 deg AFOV. Next will probably be a 12 mm.

 

Meanwhile, my 120 ProED that I bought just this week (second hand) came with an older Meade LXD75 GEQ. Seems to work fine and while I do plan on using that for a little while, I'll  be looking to find a replacement that would be a more solid astrophotography platform.  I have a lot to learn!


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#23 Jond105

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:59 PM

You got a really nice starting mount for visual use without a doubt with that purchase. Congrats on the scope, Mount and eyepiece. 


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#24 SteveG

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:07 PM

Thanks all! Ended up going with the Baader Morpheus 6.5 / 76 deg AFOV. Next will probably be a 12 mm.

 

Meanwhile, my 120 ProED that I bought just this week (second hand) came with an older Meade LXD75 GEQ. Seems to work fine and while I do plan on using that for a little while, I'll  be looking to find a replacement that would be a more solid astrophotography platform.  I have a lot to learn!

That's an excellent high-power choice. I've read the 6.5 is the best in the Morpheus line. I have the 12 and it's very good!


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#25 TerryD23

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:38 PM

You got a really nice starting mount for visual use without a doubt with that purchase. Congrats on the scope, Mount and eyepiece. 

Thanks very much!  




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