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Help! Tele Vue Panoptic 24mm vs Tele Vue Plossl 25mm

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#1 airplanebuilder

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 06:32 PM

Hoping I can get some input between these two excellent eyepieces.

 

I have a C5 SCT that I just got out of mothballs for the first time in almost a decade. One of the things I had planned to do but never did was replace the 25mm (50x) SMA that came with the scope with something better. I have several ED Glass and Lanthanum eyepieces of shorter focal length, but that 25mm always seems to hit the sweet spot for me. It's the one I go back to for most observing sessions.

 

So now I'm stuck between the Panoptic 24mm and Plossl 25mm. I could afford the Panoptic, but with the money saved, I could by two plossls and take the wife out to dinner.

 

 

Is the Panoptic too much eyepiece for a 5 inch spotting scope? (I hate that term)

Is the half pound weight too much (my SkyView Pro can handle it, but is it overkill for such a small optical tube)?

Is the eyepiece focal length too long to really appreciate such a pricey eyepiece?

 

I am a casual observer, but appreciate nice things. I want to get the most out of my optics, but throwing money at it for the sake of throwing money doesn't make sense.

 

I appreciate any and all input.


Edited by airplanebuilder, 13 August 2020 - 09:38 PM.

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#2 Starman1

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 06:50 PM

The 24mm Panoptic would be an excellent eyepiece for that scope.

And the magnification would be OK as well.

 

However, with such superb 60° eyepieces available like the Astrotech Paradigms (only $60 from Astronomics, our sponsor), I'd avoid Plössls altogether

and get a 25mm Paradigm and 12mm Paradigm and enjoy the larger true fields as well as a more comfortable eye relief.

For the price of one 24mm Panoptic, you could get a set of 5 eyepieces!  


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#3 ShaulaB

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 07:36 PM

Get the Paradigms.

 

Then save up for a scope with more aperture. Just an opinion. I love big scopes and I cannot lie.


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#4 Shorty Barlow

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 07:40 PM

Or this maybe?

 

https://agenaastro.c...piece-24mm.html


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#5 airplanebuilder

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 08:01 PM

I just stumbled on this eyepiece. I have been researching it since my original post.  It looks like a winner, but the weight is....substantial. I would encourage opinions on the Explore Scientific as well.  My only concern is it might be bigger than my optical tube.lol.gif


Edited by airplanebuilder, 13 August 2020 - 08:44 PM.


#6 Cometeer

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 08:29 PM

I vote for the ES 24mm 68* and dinner. 
 

The weight is not a problem at all for your C5 on the Skyview Pro. 


Edited by Cometeer, 13 August 2020 - 08:31 PM.

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#7 airplanebuilder

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 08:48 PM

I vote for the ES 24mm 68* and dinner. 
 

The weight is not a problem at all for your C5 on the SkyView Pro. 

 

I'm beginning to believe this might be the perfect compromise.


Edited by airplanebuilder, 13 August 2020 - 08:49 PM.


#8 Shorty Barlow

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 08:58 PM

I just stumbled on this eyepiece. I have been researching it since my original post.  It looks like a winner, but the weight is....substantial. I would encourage opinions on the Explore Scientific as well.  My only concern is it might be bigger than my optical tube.lol.gif

I have the 24mm Pan, but not this. I have the 27mm Pan and the 28mm ES equivalent though, there isn't that much between them in many respects. 

 

gallery_249298_10131_62166.jpg

 

28mm ES

 

Focal Length  28 mm
Eye Relief  21.6 mm
Weight  475g
Field Stop Diameter 31.8 mm
Length 91.4mm
Width 61.3 mm
Lenses/Groups 6/4

 

27mm Panoptic

 

Focal Length 27mm
Eye Relief 19mm
Weight  465g
Field Stop 30.5mm
Length 91.4mm
Width 53.3mm

 

med_gallery_249298_10131_103366.jpg

 

I can't see the 24mm ES being any heavier than the 24mm Pan, which is around 230g. ES aren't always that accurate on their site regarding weights. I actually weighed both eyepieces above myself.


Edited by Shorty Barlow, 13 August 2020 - 09:03 PM.

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#9 KTAZ

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 09:08 PM

I owned both the 25MM Paradigm and the 24MM ES 68 at the same time. I have a 9.25 SCT and it was a very hard decision, but I kept the ES due to the additional FOV and slightly better performance.

 

But I am 100% with Don on this, for your 5” scope the Paradigms are the way to go. You will love them. They are good quality, feel good in the hand, have a great screw up eyecup, and are such a value that you simply can’t beat them for your needs.


Edited by KTAZ, 13 August 2020 - 09:09 PM.

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#10 airplanebuilder

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 09:30 PM

But I am 100% with Don on this, for your 5” scope the Paradigms are the way to go. You will love them. They are good quality, feel good in the hand, have a great screw up eye cup, and are such a value that you simply can’t beat them for your needs.

So you are of the opinion that for a 5 inch scope, the big dollar eyepieces are a bit overkill? That's kind of what I'm wondering as well. I just have trouble believing a "value" optical component can actually deliver the goods optically.  No offense to anyone, I'm just thinking out loud and asking for feedback/education.


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#11 John Gauvreau

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 09:54 PM

I have used all three; Paradigm, Panoptic and ES68.

 

Don is right; the Paradigm is an excellent and economical choice.  Highly recommended.

Shorty Barlow is right; the ES68 is a better eyepiece and still not overly expensive.

Everyone else who picks the Panoptic is right; the 24mm is one of, if not the best eyepieces you can get in that range.

 

For me, I chose the 24mm ES68.  It was the right balance between quality, cost and eye relief.  You might make a different choice and that’s ok.  All three eyepieces are winners.


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#12 airplanebuilder

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Posted 13 August 2020 - 09:59 PM

I have used all three; Paradigm, Panoptic and ES68.

 

Don is right; the Paradigm is an excellent and economical choice.  Highly recommended.

Shorty Barlow is right; the ES68 is a better eyepiece and still not overly expensive.

Everyone else who picks the Panoptic is right; the 24mm is one of, if not the best eyepieces you can get in that range.

 

For me, I chose the 24mm ES68.  It was the right balance between quality, cost and eye relief.  You might make a different choice and that’s ok.  All three eyepieces are winners.

You sir, nailed it. This is exactly how I feel. I'm placing my order for the ES68. Thank you everyone for all your help.


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#13 Starman1

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 01:03 AM

I have the 24mm Pan, but not this. I have the 27mm Pan and the 28mm ES equivalent though, there isn't that much between them in many respects. 

 

gallery_249298_10131_62166.jpg

 

28mm ES

 

Focal Length  28 mm
Eye Relief  21.6 mm
Weight  475g
Field Stop Diameter 31.8 mm
Length 91.4mm
Width 61.3 mm
Lenses/Groups 6/4

 

27mm Panoptic

 

Focal Length 27mm
Eye Relief 19mm
Weight  465g
Field Stop 30.5mm
Length 91.4mm
Width 53.3mm

 

med_gallery_249298_10131_103366.jpg

 

I can't see the 24mm ES being any heavier than the 24mm Pan, which is around 230g. ES aren't always that accurate on their site regarding weights. I actually weighed both eyepieces above myself.

24mm Panoptic: 233g on my gram scale

24mm ES 68°: 318g on my gram scale

24mm APM UFF: 331g on my gram scale

25mm Astrotech Paradigm: 167g.  It's lightweight, I tell you.


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#14 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 07:15 AM

So you are of the opinion that for a 5 inch scope, the big dollar eyepieces are a bit overkill? That's kind of what I'm wondering as well. I just have trouble believing a "value" optical component can actually deliver the goods optically.  No offense to anyone, I'm just thinking out loud and asking for feedback/education.

 

Don recommended the Astro-Tech 25 mm Paradigm for your C-5.

 

It's a $60, 60° eyepiece. I have one. I also have a Meade 24 mm SWA which is optically identical to the 24 mm 68° Explore Scientific. I also have a 22 mm TeleVue Panoptic.

 

In my F/5 scopes, I can see the difference between these three eyepieces without too much difficulty because the Paradigm shows visible off-axis astigmatism, stars near the edge are not clean, tight circles. The Meade/ES is very good in the regard with only a tiny bit visible and the Panoptic is essentially perfect.

 

That's at F/5, eyepieces don't like F/5, the bundles of light are entering at wide angles. Eyepieces like F/10 much better. The 25 mm Paradigm is much better at F/10 than at F/5.

 

Now to answer your concern:

 

Can a budget eyepiece deliver the goods?  

 

You've had your 25 mm SMA for a long time and like it. It's a 3 element eyepiece with a ~50° field of view. It seems to have delivered the goods.

 

I also have this eyepiece. At F/5, the Paradigm is sharper off-axis and provides a wider field of view as well as more comfortable eye relief. That's what 5 elements buys you. At F/10, it should be a significant improvement and very similar to the 24 mm ES and Panoptic.

 

My recommendation for you is to buy the Paradigm. It's $60. If you don't like it, you can sell it and buy something else. You'll be out about $20. I think you'll like it. I like mine and very often use it in my fast scopes because it's just a nice eyepiece to look through despite it's less than perfect views in a fast scope.

 

And think about this: Don Pensack is an eyepiece expert, he doesn't say that, I say that, when I'm wondering about an eyepiece, I ask Don. 

 

He sells eyepieces. He sells both the 24 mm Explore Scientific 68° and the 24 mm Panoptic. He doesn't sell the 25 mm Paradigm but he recommends it for your 5 inch F/10 SCT.

 

That's very telling about both the eyepiece and Don. 

 

Jon


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#15 Shorty Barlow

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 07:29 AM

24mm Panoptic: 233g on my gram scale

24mm ES 68°: 318g on my gram scale

24mm APM UFF: 331g on my gram scale

25mm Astrotech Paradigm: 167g.  It's lightweight, I tell you.

I suppose the extra 85 grammes must be the added weight of the kryptonite gas the ES eyepieces are full of lol. My weighing scales are knackered anyway so most of my figures are approximate. 

 

I always thought the ES 28mm was a little top heavy compared to the 27mm Panoptic when I rotated the focuser. 

 

med_gallery_249298_10131_125261.jpg

 

I'm guessing the Paradigms are the same as the BST StarGuiders. The 25mm would be OK in an SCT, I was disappointed with it in my 72ED DS Pro (f/5.8). It's a nice eyepiece in the right scope. Interestingly, it reduces well. I've used it in Maksutovs with a 2x reducer.


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#16 Second Time Around

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 09:35 AM

 

And think about this: Don Pensack is an eyepiece expert, he doesn't say that, I say that, when I'm wondering about an eyepiece, I ask Don. 

 

He sells eyepieces. He sells both the 24 mm Explore Scientific 68° and the 24 mm Panoptic. He doesn't sell the 25 mm Paradigm but he recommends it for your 5 inch F/10 SCT.

 

That's very telling about both the eyepiece and Don. 

 

Jon

Excellent comment. Thanks, Jon.


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#17 airplanebuilder

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 05:06 PM

Don recommended the Astro-Tech 25 mm Paradigm for your C-5.


And think about this: Don Pensack is an eyepiece expert, he doesn't say that, I say that, when I'm wondering about an eyepiece, I ask Don. 

 

He sells eyepieces. He sells both the 24 mm Explore Scientific 68° and the 24 mm Panoptic. He doesn't sell the 25 mm Paradigm but he recommends it for your 5 inch F/10 SCT.

 

That's very telling about both the eyepiece and Don. 

 

Jon

This is something I did not know or consider. This is my second post, and I wasn't aware of his credentials. Don, my apologies. I was under the impression you were a Paradigm salesman, trying to make a sale. I hope you'll excuse my lack of understanding. In any case, I was able to find the ES 68 for a decent price, and went that route. I will keep the Paradigm in mind should the ES 68 prove problematic. You all have been a great help to me. Thank You.


Edited by airplanebuilder, 14 August 2020 - 06:12 PM.

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#18 Starman1

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 07:04 PM

No apologies necessary.  The 24mm ES 68° has a little wider true field than the 25mm Paradigm, too, so you did good!

It is a fun eyepiece to use, plus, it has a wider apparent field.  The wider the field, the more open it feels.

It'll be a good match to your scope. 

Enjoy. 

And don't forget to come back and post your comments after you've had a chance to use it.


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#19 airplanebuilder

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 07:42 PM

I most certainly will, Don.


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#20 earlyriser

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 09:44 PM

You’ll do fine with any of the eyepieces you are considering. But the 24mm Panoptic makes me want to go out and observe just so I can look through it. I’m quite smitten with it. It more or less lives in the C6. 


Edited by earlyriser, 14 August 2020 - 09:46 PM.

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#21 airplanebuilder

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 10:13 PM

24mm Panoptic: 233g on my gram scale

24mm ES 68°: 318g on my gram scale

24mm APM UFF: 331g on my gram scale

25mm Astrotech Paradigm: 167g.  It's lightweight, I tell you.

If I may ask one question of you Don, will the star diagonal that came with my Celestron C5 be up to the task of holding that chunky ES 68? I just ran across an old post where you recommended another member to upgrade to a GSO diagonal for the sake of supporting heavier eyepieces. I assume this one?

 

https://agenaastro.c...ssion-ring.html

 

or perhaps:

 

https://www.highpoin...e-holder-prism1

 

Just when I think I'm out of questions, I seem to find more.



#22 Starman1

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 10:53 AM

318g is 11.2 ounces.  That is not heavy by eyepiece standards, so I think you'll be fine.

But, there is always a reason to upgrade the diagonal, I suppose.

Especially if the body of your star diagonal is plastic (and many Celestrons I've seen have had plastic-body diagonals).

That GSO is a very cost-effective upgrade if you have the plastic body diagonal.


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#23 airplanebuilder

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 12:24 PM

Again, Thank You Don.


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#24 airplanebuilder

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Posted 19 August 2020 - 05:41 PM


And don't forget to come back and post your comments after you've had a chance to use it.

Got the ES 68 yesterday  afternoon and in my scope last night. I've been viewing Jupiter and Saturn all week with the SMA. By the time I get home from work they're in the Southwestern sky, right above Portland, Oregon, so the light pollution is fairly significant. The seeing was rather awful as well, due to high temperatures and wildfires to the East.

 

My initial, untrained impressions:

 

I genuinely expected the eyepiece to be as big as a pop can, and while it is big, I was pleasantly surprised it isn't ginormous. My Celestron 94115-A diagonal supported it without issue. The body of the eyepiece is so wide I had to lift it slightly to lock it down in the diagonal. Celestron uses thick, stubby knurled lock screws that sit above the diagonal slightly. I replaced them temporarily with longer, more slender lock screws from my variable polarizing filter. Interference problem solved. Looks like a click lock diagonal is in the near future.

 

Enough about ergonomics. The eyepiece is spectacular when compared to the SMA. Jupiter and the moons were so bright, it caught me by surprise. I actually had trouble discerning any detail at first, until my eye adjusted to it. My wife knows nothing about astronomy, and immediately commented on how much brighter it was than using "the little eyepiece."

 

The field of view is as much as I could ever want in an eyepiece. As a matter of fact, it's almost too much for planetary viewing. It almost seems like a waste on such a long focal length eyepiece. I'm hoping it works out better with extended faint fuzzies and moon observations. Don't get me wrong, I very much like it, but in my scope it gives me 52x magnification. Jupiter is fairly tiny in this vast star field. I think it will make something like The Pleiades look spectacular, which I've never been able to take in all at once. A 68 degree field probably fits better with shorter focal length eyepieces.

 

All in all, I am more than satisfied with the Explore Scientific.


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#25 Cometeer

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Posted 19 August 2020 - 06:30 PM

The field of view is as much as I could ever want in an eyepiece. As a matter of fact, it's almost too much for planetary viewing. It almost seems like a waste on such a long focal length eyepiece. I'm hoping it works out better with extended faint fuzzies and moon observations. Don't get me wrong, I very much like it, but in my scope it gives me 52x magnification. Jupiter is fairly tiny in this vast star field. I think it will make something like The Pleiades look spectacular, which I've never been able to take in all at once. A 68 degree field probably fits better with shorter focal length eyepieces.

 

All in all, I am more than satisfied with the Explore Scientific.

 Glad you like the eyepiece. A 24mm 68* eyepiece is not meant to be a planetary eyepiece. If you bought it for that purpose, then you bought the wrong tool for the job. A 68 degree field is definitely not only better suited for shorter focal length eyepieces. There are some large DSOs out there that require a large tfov to see them in their entirety. That’s where this eyepiece shines. 


Edited by Cometeer, 19 August 2020 - 06:30 PM.



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