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BST eyepiece or Zoom Baader

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9 replies to this topic

#1 Nayin

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 11:39 AM

Hello everyone, I have a 5mm BST Explorer eyepiece that I am very satisfied with, so I decided to start the collection of different focal points or at least 4 of them to use in a Celestron C6.
The question arises whether it is worth the outlay, or on the contrary it would be more interesting to get a Zoom eyepiece from Baader.
I know that in positions 24 and 20 the zoom has a narrow field width and is improving closely from 16 to 8, which are usually the most usable, while the BST have a field width of 60 in all their focal points.
What do you consider more interesting, having about 4 BST eyepieces that cover several of the focal points offered by the Baader zoom or, on the contrary, opting for the latter?



#2 russell23

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 11:49 AM

Hello everyone, I have a 5mm BST Explorer eyepiece that I am very satisfied with, so I decided to start the collection of different focal points or at least 4 of them to use in a Celestron C6.
The question arises whether it is worth the outlay, or on the contrary it would be more interesting to get a Zoom eyepiece from Baader.
I know that in positions 24 and 20 the zoom has a narrow field width and is improving closely from 16 to 8, which are usually the most usable, while the BST have a field width of 60 in all their focal points.
What do you consider more interesting, having about 4 BST eyepieces that cover several of the focal points offered by the Baader zoom or, on the contrary, opting for the latter?

I've always thought, purely looking at specifications, that single focal length eyepieces will outperform a zoom at any given focal length.

 

However, the Baader zoom seems to be an excellent zoom by all accounts and provides a little wider field than most zooms.

 

Recently I decided to see what a zoom is like and picked up an Orion 7-21mm zoom which has a 40 deg field at 21mm and a 57 deg field at 7mm.  I chose this one because it was only $60 and it provides enough eye relief for me to use my glasses across its full range.

 

What I found is that the zoom is an enjoyable eyepiece, but if you compare a given focal length to a fixed focal length eyepiece, the fixed focal length is better.  The fixed FL has a wider field and is sharper.   So I think if you are going to go the zoom route in lieu of fixed focal length eyepieces, something like the Baader zoom with its excellent reputation is probably what you want.

 

I'll keep the zoom just to have around, but I have not yet figured out where it fits in to what I do.


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#3 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 12:17 PM

To add to what Dave Russell said:

 

I've owned a few zooms and tried others. In general, they just didn't get used. I have a set of TeleVues as well as a set of TMB Planetary's, similar to BSTs and zooms were not good enough,  the fields not wide enough.

 

However, the Baader zoom is a game changer. It's not as perfect or as wide as the 13 mm and 8mm Ethos I often use it with but it's good enough to "hang" with the pack and the ability to dial in the magnification is a major advantage.  I'm using it in fast scopes that are demanding, at F/10, your SCT with be easier on the zoom.

 

You might consider buying the Celestron 8mm-24mm zoom. It's quite good and I measured The Afov at 39° to 63°. In a scope on a GOTO mount, that is probably enough.

 

If you like it, then consider the Baader or just sticking with the Celestron. If you don't like it, you probably wouldn't have like the Baader.. sell it and consider it a lesson learned.

 

Jon


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#4 grzesznypl

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Posted 26 May 2020 - 08:07 PM

Hello everyone, I have a 5mm BST Explorer eyepiece that I am very satisfied with, so I decided to start the collection of different focal points or at least 4 of them to use in a Celestron C6.
The question arises whether it is worth the outlay, or on the contrary it would be more interesting to get a Zoom eyepiece from Baader.
I know that in positions 24 and 20 the zoom has a narrow field width and is improving closely from 16 to 8, which are usually the most usable, while the BST have a field width of 60 in all their focal points.
What do you consider more interesting, having about 4 BST eyepieces that cover several of the focal points offered by the Baader zoom or, on the contrary, opting for the latter?

I would find very interesting if you got 2 low power eyepieces and zoom. Used Baaders shows frequently in classifieds and go for around $200 and if you do not like it sell it and get most of your money back. 

Regarding bit of narrowness in the low power department. In my own experience I jump from low power 30mm ep directly into much shorter focal length bypassing 20-24mm range altogether, most of the time. Consequently, do not care if those are between 49° to 44°. Bit narrow but still very doable even in manual scope which AD10 is.



#5 Jenya_M

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Posted 26 May 2020 - 08:38 PM

Have Baader zoom for several years and it's my the most used eyepiece for Moon/planets with my 150 Mak. For wide views of star clusters, I would get some 70+ degrees eyepiece to capture all the scene. Personally, I'm using for this purpose Orion Q70 32 and 38 mm line of eyepieces. They perform quite well with my Mak.


Edited by Jenya_M, 26 May 2020 - 08:47 PM.


#6 SeattleScott

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 09:28 AM

The Baader Zoom is good for a zoom, and will do fine at F10. It will cover most of your usable range. No idea about BST Explorer series.

Scott

#7 aeajr

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 07:33 PM

I have both the Celestron and the Baader Hyperion zoom, BHZ.

 

The BHZ is my most used eyepiece in my 8" and 12" scopes.  

 

  • I never expected the zoom eyepiece to become my primary eyepiece, but it has.
  • With a zoom, the eyepiece seems to disappear as you just move in and out at will, no swapping, no thinking about eyepiece changes
  • The Celestron 8-24 zoom is good and comparable to my Plossl eyepieces
  • The Baader Hyperion is great and comparable to my Explore Scientific eyepieces
  • Watching doubles split as I rotate the barrel is wonderful
  • One filter serves over a wide range of magnifications, no screwing and unscrewing to try other eyepieces
  • Moving smoothly between small changes in magnification helps when seeing is not the best
  • I am always working at the optimum magnification for this target.
  • Sharing the view with others is easier, especially in my manual tracking Dob - I hand it over at low mag so it stays in the view longer.  They zoom back in to whatever magnification works best for them.
  • My eyepiece case has been greatly simplified
  • Kids love the zoom

 

When I observe, 90% of the time, in all of my scopes, I use one or two low power, then the zoom.    I have single FL eyepieces in my kit, but they are rarely used.


Edited by aeajr, 27 May 2020 - 07:35 PM.

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#8 Bill Fischer

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 08:20 PM

I had a BHZ and sold it because I preferred the wider FOV of my single FL eyepieces. To my eyes the quality of view was equal except for the FOV. I found myself going for my 82 degree eyepieces and the BHZ stayed in the box. There is no denying the Zoom feature is very handy. 


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#9 areyoukiddingme

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 10:41 PM

Depends on the zoom, and depends on what fixed-focal lengths it is being compared to.

 

My most used (across reflectors and refractors) is a Leica (8.9 to 17.8). I have compared with 14 Delos, a set of Pentax XWs, Explore Scientific 9/14 100s, Ethos (full set), and Nikon HWs.

 

The only eyepiece I have tried that bests the zoom for contrast is the Nikon 17mm HW. It also, obviously, wins on apparent field (at 102 degrees).

 

So I would say if you are comparing like budgets with a zoom, there's a chance that the zoom is as good or even better than comparison fixed focal lengths. What it will lack is apparent field, and for that there's no replacement in a zoom.

 

I also have a 3-6 Nagler zoom, and have compared with Takahashi 6mm Ortho, Takahashi 4mm TOE, and UO 6mm.

 

I have found that the Nagler has a darker tone, but it shows me every bit as much as those other eyepieces. So much so, that after repeated comparisons I can't split them on performance. And the Nagler zooms.



#10 Jaimo!

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 10:59 PM

I followed the heard with the Baader Zoom, after owning the Celestron Zoom.  While the Baader is a nice Zoom...  I never take it out for night time observing and I prefer a couple of three fixed focal length eyepieces.  At 24mm the Baader field of view is too limiting for general observing, in my opinion.  When you could have a nice midrange eyepiece with 68 degree AFOV maxing out your field of view 24mm ES68, which is valuable as a finder a low power.  My Baader is only used for solar and travel, a speciality eyepiece.

 

But a lot of people like them, it the funny thing about eyepieces...  there are usually no wrong answers, whatever makes you happy.

 

penny.gif penny.gif ,

Jaimo!

 

EDIT: I keep my old Celestron Zoom in my planetary imaging kit to set up the GoTo on the mount.




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