I took my Master Birder out last night for grab and go looks at Jupiter/Saturn/ and moon, and to test out how it does with my new sturdy Monopod and Bogen Manfrotto head. A 4mm Stellarvue 82* was pushing it at approx. 115X, at least on Jupiter. On Saturn and the moon it held up good. Put in my Stellarview binoviewer also, with 3xBarlow and 26mm eyepieces, and it held good, - but with 2x barlow there was not enough "In" focus room. Best views were with MK IV 8-24 zoom coupled with 2x barlow. Low altitude of planets was a definite factor, but of course the BIG problem was simply that a 'Monopod' is just not the right component for any Higher Power use. For nights of no moon and dark sky, when I want quick easy access to star fields/open clusters/large galaxies(M31) etc. at powers up to maybe 60x, - this should be an excellent set-up. Of course for best looks at planet etc. I go with my 4" ED refractor, or C8. Your set up reminded me of my focus issue with this birder scope, - 'fine focus' is not easy. So today I rigged up a 2 1/2" long "L" allen wrench, painted the end white for visibility, and used a 'coupler' to attach it to the focuser rod, replacing 1 of the knobs. This is going to make 'fine focus' adjustments easy. Can't wait to try it out in the dark. For a little birder scope, this thing amazes me, - but then again, I got the stripped down version back in the 90's, and even that was $650.00 I believe, so it should be a good scope. I also now have a 2" AT diagonal, and a couple of 2" 70* eyepieces that are fun with this scope. Another great feature on this scope is the "close focus", it's got to be less than 10ft, so close ups on bushes/insects etc. is easy also.
Edited by Thomas Marshall, 30 July 2020 - 07:24 PM.