Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Purely Hypothetical - Given $1500 for eyepieces...Now spend!

  • Please log in to reply
46 replies to this topic

#1 gravy11

gravy11

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 239
  • Joined: 21 Jun 2020
  • Loc: NJ (USA)

Posted 23 September 2020 - 05:41 PM

A buddy of mine (actually a person and not that random blonde I dated from Canada that never visited because of visa issues), he isn’t on here but asked me this question and my answer is definitely not as educated as a lot of you will provide, so here it is. 
 

You just got an 8” SCT. You have committed $1500 to go berserker on eyepieces. Your goal is planetary viewing....lunar viewing and you want to go DSO hunting. You live in a Bortle 7 area but hit a Bortle 4 once a month. Your seeing on most nights is Average.

 

Don’t pick apart the specifics. What do you get? Do you get a 31mm TV or is that money that can be spent in better areas? How high powered do you go? I’ve avoided <10mm because the times I’ve used them have been underwhelming.
 

What do you get?

 

Like I said, my answer is based on hype, reviews and 6 months of experience. Ergo, I don’t think I’m the best equipped to spend here. That said, I would get the 31mm Nagler because, what I’ve read and seen has been pretty solid. I also like the ES pieces. I have an ES 40 62 degree (or 68, I forget) and I love it. I also have the Baader Zoom which is nice and flexible. 
 

Thoughts?


  • REC likes this

#2 havasman

havasman

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 11,621
  • Joined: 04 Aug 2013
  • Loc: Dallas, Texas

Posted 23 September 2020 - 05:59 PM

I don't think I'd spend that much. Take advantage of the scope's design. How 'bout a 35Pan and a 25/18/9mm set of Tak Abbe orthos and just maybe an APM HDC 13mm? As long as the 35Pan doesn't vignette in the scope that set covers a lot of bases. The Pan pops up in the secondary market pretty regularly too.


  • Volvonium and gravy11 like this

#3 SeattleScott

SeattleScott

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 9,008
  • Joined: 14 Oct 2011

Posted 23 September 2020 - 06:10 PM

With that budget NV starts becoming a possibility, used at least.

Sticking with glass, 38 Agena SWA for low power, 22 Olivon, 13 APM HDC (or 16T5 if smaller form factor is preferred), then maybe Delite 11 and 7, possibly the 9 too.

Seems as good as anything. Obviously it would depend on preferences of ER vs AFOV and what not, but this is just hypothetical.

Scott
  • 25585 and gravy11 like this

#4 areyoukiddingme

areyoukiddingme

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 5,739
  • Joined: 18 Nov 2012

Posted 23 September 2020 - 06:15 PM

30 APM ultra flat and a Leica zoom. Add a nice barlow if the scope can do high powers and the seeing allows for it.


  • mkothe, SeattleScott, havasman and 3 others like this

#5 Jethro7

Jethro7

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,308
  • Joined: 17 Dec 2018
  • Loc: N.W. Florida

Posted 23 September 2020 - 06:17 PM

A buddy of mine (actually a person and not that random blonde I dated from Canada that never visited because of visa issues), he isn’t on here but asked me this question and my answer is definitely not as educated as a lot of you will provide, so here it is. 
 

You just got an 8” SCT. You have committed $1500 to go berserker on eyepieces. Your goal is planetary viewing....lunar viewing and you want to go DSO hunting. You live in a Bortle 7 area but hit a Bortle 4 once a month. Your seeing on most nights is Average.

 

Don’t pick apart the specifics. What do you get? Do you get a 31mm TV or is that money that can be spent in better areas? How high powered do you go? I’ve avoided <10mm because the times I’ve used them have been underwhelming.
 

What do you get?

 

Like I said, my answer is based on hype, reviews and 6 months of experience. Ergo, I don’t think I’m the best equipped to spend here. That said, I would get the 31mm Nagler because, what I’ve read and seen has been pretty solid. I also like the ES pieces. I have an ES 40 62 degree (or 68, I forget) and I love it. I also have the Baader Zoom which is nice and flexible. 
 

Thoughts?

Hello Gavy11,

I love my TV31mm NT5 with my C8, but my approach is totally different. I would buy a BHZ and 2.5 X Barlow, also one of my most used eyepieces. And then I would buy a Astrotech AT102ED . I love that TV31mmNT5 more through the AT102 ED. But use the BHZ  the most in this scope.

The C8 and AT102ED will complement each other in so many ways expanding your viewing experience. I like the Planetary and Lunar views, open clusters and splitting double Stars through the AT102 ED much better than the C8, they are crisper. Not to mention the wide fields of views. The C8 for DSOs and dim Closed clusters. I often pair these two scopes for viewing sessions. And over time you can fill in the blank spaces in your eyepiece line up.

 

HAPPY SKIES AND KEEP LOOKING UP Jethro

 

20200817 015706

Edited by Jethro7, 23 September 2020 - 07:06 PM.

  • havasman and gravy11 like this

#6 jallbery

jallbery

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,554
  • Joined: 01 Nov 2015
  • Loc: Southeast Michigan

Posted 23 September 2020 - 06:39 PM

One eyepiece that I WOULD NOT buy is the 31mm Nagler.  It's a great eyepiece, but you are paying a premium for exceptional performance at fast focal ratios and excellent edge correction.  Assuming this is a conventional SCT, it should do a great job showing you the scope's field curvature and coma.   And at F/10, the ES82s are more than enough.

 

If I had $1500 to spend, and I had to spend it on eyepieces for a conventional 8" SCT, I might go with something like this...

 

ES68 40mm -- $390

ES68 28mm -- $240

Baader Morpheus 17.5mm -- $240

Televue Delite 11mm -- $255

Televue Delite 9mm -- $255

Meade HD60 6.5mm -- $75

 

On the wide end, 68 degrees is plenty for me and at F/10 I like the bigger exit pupils.  The Morpheus gives a bit wider of field.  The DeLites are excellent, have great eye relief, and for most high power stuff (and planetary in particular), I prefer a narrower field of view (I am assuming a tracking mount).  For rare nights of great seeing, I would want something higher power, but don't want to sink a ton of money in an eyepiece that I'll virtually never use.  The Meade 6.5mm HD60 hits above its weight class and fills that role.


  • earlyriser, 25585 and gravy11 like this

#7 Echolight

Echolight

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,099
  • Joined: 01 May 2020
  • Loc: Texas

Posted 23 September 2020 - 07:10 PM

Well I got the APM HDC HWA 20 as my first eyepiece picked specifically with the C8 in mind. About 100x, 1° TFoV, and 2mm exit pupil...roughly.

 

Had the Baader zoom. And I figure a 1.6x barlow would be just about right to make the zoom my sole high power eyepiece in the C8. 5-15mm and 140x to 420x, assuming 2100mm focal length with 2 inch refractor style diagonal. And I have 2x and 2.5x barlows already just in case 420x isn't enough.

And....I can run it native for 8mm 68° AFOV.

 

The third and fourth choice are a little trickier.

 

A 35 Panoptic sounds good for low power. But only 1.13° TFoV.

 

An XW40 would give the max 1.3° true field of view even at 2100 focal length, at about the same cost. And a 3.87mm exit pupil in case I want to use a filter. So I'll go with the Pentax (even though I've been considering a Meade 28mm PWA for my outer edge of the urban light dome back yard).

 

And the last one is the toughest. It would be a widefield in the bottom third of the 1.6x barlowed zoom range.

 

I haven't been able to single out the right one yet. But there should be about $300 left to fill the role after the ones above and taxes.

 

The contenders are: 12.5 Morpheus, 12.5 APM Hi-FW, 13 APM Hyperwide, and 14 Orion LHD.

I lean towards the 12.5's because it'd give me the largest split and highest power in my C6R.


Edited by Echolight, 23 September 2020 - 07:27 PM.

  • 25585 and gravy11 like this

#8 BillP

BillP

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 20,482
  • Joined: 26 Nov 2006
  • Loc: Spotsylvania, VA

Posted 23 September 2020 - 08:41 PM

First question would be is the SCT an Edge or ACF or just a standard one.  Reason I ask is that if just the standard models, then would first get a reducer as that cleans up the edges a little on those.  So would be two entirely different set of eyepieces depending on if reducer or not is being used.


  • Starman81 and gravy11 like this

#9 CrazyPanda

CrazyPanda

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,488
  • Joined: 30 Sep 2012

Posted 23 September 2020 - 08:56 PM

A buddy of mine (actually a person and not that random blonde I dated from Canada that never visited because of visa issues), he isn’t on here but asked me this question and my answer is definitely not as educated as a lot of you will provide, so here it is. 
 

You just got an 8” SCT. You have committed $1500 to go berserker on eyepieces. Your goal is planetary viewing....lunar viewing and you want to go DSO hunting. You live in a Bortle 7 area but hit a Bortle 4 once a month. Your seeing on most nights is Average.

 

Don’t pick apart the specifics. What do you get? Do you get a 31mm TV or is that money that can be spent in better areas? How high powered do you go? I’ve avoided <10mm because the times I’ve used them have been underwhelming.
 

What do you get?

 

Like I said, my answer is based on hype, reviews and 6 months of experience. Ergo, I don’t think I’m the best equipped to spend here. That said, I would get the 31mm Nagler because, what I’ve read and seen has been pretty solid. I also like the ES pieces. I have an ES 40 62 degree (or 68, I forget) and I love it. I also have the Baader Zoom which is nice and flexible. 
 

Thoughts?

I would get a Denk Binotron with Powerswitch and a pair of TV Plossls or Tak Abbe Orthos at focal lengths that make sense given the power switch.

 

Binoviewing is like a paradigm shift for planetary contrast.

 

I would also make sure to get a very high quality 2" diagonal.


Edited by CrazyPanda, 23 September 2020 - 08:56 PM.

  • Spartinix and Ohmless like this

#10 csrlice12

csrlice12

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 26,944
  • Joined: 22 May 2012
  • Loc: Denver, CO

Posted 23 September 2020 - 11:56 PM

I'm with Jethro.....get a comparable rich field scope.



#11 Spartinix

Spartinix

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 606
  • Joined: 25 Apr 2017
  • Loc: Crete, Greece

Posted 24 September 2020 - 12:20 AM

With that level of lp, lunar and planetary will be 90% of the observing opportunities. Use the telescope to its particular strengths (F10..), but also the location.
So here also, I'd recommend a good binoviewer, two pairs of eyepieces and perhaps just some cheap ~40mm 68° eyepiece for big dso's.

#12 Mbinoc

Mbinoc

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 722
  • Joined: 05 Jan 2019
  • Loc: 30 miles West Of Chicago (Split time in Dupage, and LaSalle County IL)

Posted 24 September 2020 - 01:14 AM

The first thing I would do, is buy as many decent plossl eyepieces sets as I could with the first $500 so I could give away a few of my earlier scopes finds to my friends to also enjoy.

 

In the last year and a half since I first started in this hobby I have already given away three of my earlier scope finds to young kids. (The first was to my nephew, and the 2nd was to a kid that attended his birthday party, and walked up to me and said "That was a cool gift"). I'm friends with his dad, and made sure he got one for his birthday also.

 

I have since then gave another (scope, and microscope) to a friends daughter who is really smart and is interested in science, She is very advanced for her age. The last time I was at his house, he was bragging how smart she was and he asked her to say all the presidents in order, she then rattled them off. I then asked her if she could say them all in backwards order. She responded,"I don't know, let me try", then blurted out a bunch of names. I then asked my friend if she was right, and he responded "Hell if I know?". This girl is still in grade school, and reads college level course books for fun. All parents brag about there kids, but this is the first child I ever encountered that stands out from the rest.

 

(I wish I could have gave them all better eye pieces with the scopes, but made sure to only include ones that would not be frustrating for them to use).

 

Next, I don't know as I have never been in that market. But I would do so some research and spend the remaining dollars on a few random highly regarded eyepieces for myself.


Edited by Mbinoc, 24 September 2020 - 01:57 AM.

  • jallbery and Ohmless like this

#13 noisejammer

noisejammer

    Fish Slapper

  • *****
  • Posts: 3,930
  • Joined: 16 Sep 2007
  • Loc: The Uncanny Valley

Posted 24 September 2020 - 04:23 AM

Let's start with keeping the exit pupil between 0.75 and 6 mm. So that means the useful range of eyepiece focal lengths would be about 7.5 - 60mm. Obviously 60mm is crazy so let's say the longest eyepiece that makes sense is 40 mm. It only makes sense if the scope has a 2" exit pupil, otherwise go for something that matches the scope.

 

So I'll guess we're limited to 7.5 - 30 mm. which spans 280x - 67x Since you're in NJ, 200x will be a better choice as maximum power. That makes the range 10-30 mm. Now you can go shopping

 

The first thing you buy is a good diagonal - you will use it with every eyepiece and the stock ones tend be horrible.

I'd go for either the AP Maxbright for a 2" or a Baader T2 (01B) prism if the scope is 38mm. That leaves you about $1200.

 

Next, I'd buy an AP Barlow - the optics can install directly into the nose piece of a diagonal. That leaves about $900

 

Then I'd buy two or three really good eyepieces that can last a lifetime. You might want to buy something like a 30mm and a 20mm because the Barlow will let you access around 15 and 10 mm and still have plenty of eye relief. I'd avoid hyper-wides and concentrate on something offering ~70 field of view. My first choice would be Pentax XW's.

 

What I would not do is buy a zoom. Lots of people like them - I really don't. Their primary failing in my eyes is that they present soda straw views at low power (when you probably want a wide view) and wide angles at high power (when you really might want a soda straw.)

 

If you have money left, a neodymium glass filter will help with planetary contrast.

 

Binoviewers - the Baader offerings are fantastic but I don't think they should be part of a first kit. I don't think they'll really fit in your budget either. Denkmeiers are good too but their eyepiece collets are not as good as the Baader offerings. I'd be leery of inexpensive models unless you can try before buy.


  • lionel, gravy11 and Boeglewatcher like this

#14 jallbery

jallbery

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,554
  • Joined: 01 Nov 2015
  • Loc: Southeast Michigan

Posted 24 September 2020 - 11:37 AM

First question would be is the SCT an Edge or ACF or just a standard one.  Reason I ask is that if just the standard models, then would first get a reducer as that cleans up the edges a little on those.  So would be two entirely different set of eyepieces depending on if reducer or not is being used.

I had similar thoughts...  and assumed a conventional SCT in the response above.   With an Edge, I'd at least consider something like ES82s.  I've never looked through an ACF, and its not clear to me the degree to which they correct field curvature or if they only correct coma.

 

However, in general, I tend to reach for 68s more than I do 82s.    I have a couple pretty good 82s: the 31mm and 23mm Celestrion Axiom LX (made by the same people who make the ES82s, and definitely superior to the current Luminos line), and the 15mm Luminos (one of the better of the line).  No they are not Naglers, but at F/10 they perform well.   But I have fairly deep-set eyes and have a great deal of difficulty  taking in the entire field of ultrawides (at least the ones that I've tried).  Even those with supposedly fairly long eye relieve tend to make me feel like I'm shoving my face into the eyepiece.    

 

And in general, I'm with the folks who say they'd spend some of the money on an additional scope that would provider wider true fields, if that were an option.  And in fact, I bought that 31mm Axiom and a Celestron 80mm EDF Onyx refractor (both used) for less than the price of a new 31mm Nagler.   And instead of ES68s, I have 2" 70-degree-ish SWA (like the Orion Q70 or Agena SWA).  I do have the 24mm ES68, and then a couple of Baader Hyperions in the teens.   At shorter focal lengths I use Meade HD60s and a mix of the various iterations of Vixen long-eye-relief 50-degree-ish eyepieces.   And I keep a couple of good plossls handy, as well as my trusty 35mm Ultima.  And on rare nights of fantastic seeing, I hang on to a couple of Meade Research orthos for planetary use.   It works for me.

 

I also agree that for a conventional SCT, the Reducer/Corrector is a true bargain.   For years, when my only two scopes were a C8 and a B&L 4000, my primary eyepieces were that 35mm Ultima, the 25mm and 17mm Halloween plossls (I still love that 25mm), and the Vixen LERs, and the R/C (for the C8), and an ultima 2x barlow.



#15 Spartinix

Spartinix

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 606
  • Joined: 25 Apr 2017
  • Loc: Crete, Greece

Posted 24 September 2020 - 12:16 PM

.........
Binoviewers - the Baader offerings are fantastic but I don't think they should be part of a first kit. I don't think they'll really fit in your budget either. Denkmeiers are good too but their eyepiece collets are not as good as the Baader offerings. I'd be leery of inexpensive models unless you can try before buy.

I don't recall reading this was a first kit.
Even then.. a binoviewer definitely fits the budget, even a good one like the MBII.
Unless a person has personal difficulty with binoviewing, nothing will beat it on the Moon and planets. It certainly beats dso-viewing with the best eyepieces available from primarily Bortle 7 conditions.

Edited by Spartinix, 24 September 2020 - 12:18 PM.


#16 noisejammer

noisejammer

    Fish Slapper

  • *****
  • Posts: 3,930
  • Joined: 16 Sep 2007
  • Loc: The Uncanny Valley

Posted 24 September 2020 - 12:54 PM

I don't recall reading this was a first kit.
Even then.. a binoviewer definitely fits the budget, even a good one like the MBII.
Unless a person has personal difficulty with binoviewing, nothing will beat it on the Moon and planets. It certainly beats dso-viewing with the best eyepieces available from primarily Bortle 7 conditions.

Having used binoviewers almost exclusively for the past 12 years (Denk II and Mk V), I think I can speak to them from a reasonably informed position. Sure, they are great on the planets (and even on deep space if your sky is dark) but my experience is they are a bit restrictive for long focal length instruments.

 

As an example, say you have a Mk V set (which is itself well out the budget), the entrance pupil is 27 mm. Ignoring the stretching of the scope's focal length, you cannot increase the visible field beyond 47 moa. This is quite restrictive for many objects, (Ok, if you tolerate a lot of vignetting you may get more but I've started with the best binoviewer available so I think 47 moa is optimistic for most others.)

 

It's also easy to loose sight of the true cost of binoviewing. Some might think I did ....


  • Jon Isaacs likes this

#17 Spartinix

Spartinix

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 606
  • Joined: 25 Apr 2017
  • Loc: Crete, Greece

Posted 24 September 2020 - 01:29 PM

Well I would do it. Suppose a stretching of the focal length to 3000mm..
A pair of 20-25mm Plossls would give 150x--120x, which should not be too much in average seeing. True field here would be ~20-25' (minutes of arc). That's not even zoomed in on The Moon. Two pairs of Plossls, the binoviewer and maybe some GPC, and two UWA's for mono on dso... ~$1500.

#18 dmorrow

dmorrow

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 160
  • Joined: 24 Dec 2010
  • Loc: North Carolina

Posted 24 September 2020 - 01:54 PM

I'm confused . . . planetary viewing with some lunar and DSO's with a C8 & FL of 2000mm and doesn't want to go below 10mm (i.e., 200 power and 1mm exit pupil)?   

 

Hmmm, recommend that you consider spending some of that money on good barlows or telextenders.  

 

What 10mm did you look through?  I'm 60 years old with tons of floaters, yet love my ES82 8.8 and 6.7's - and use my 3xES telextender with them regularly to get jaw dropping lunar views on my SV102a 


Edited by dmorrow, 24 September 2020 - 02:01 PM.


#19 Spartinix

Spartinix

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 606
  • Joined: 25 Apr 2017
  • Loc: Crete, Greece

Posted 24 September 2020 - 04:05 PM

Might have something to do with the OP's mentioning of average seeing most of the time.



#20 sportsmed

sportsmed

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 140
  • Joined: 01 Aug 2012
  • Loc: Hot Springs, AR

Posted 24 September 2020 - 05:16 PM

I dont have have a SCT but if I was to spend another $1500 on eyepieces it would probably be the Meade UWA 5.5mm, Televue Delite 7mm, Televue Delite 18mm, ES68 24mm or APM 24mm UFF, Baader aspheric 31mm or APM 30mm UFF, and maybe Televue 40mm Plossl, along with a cheaper Zoom for quick grab -n- go for Solar etc.



#21 Parsonsk

Parsonsk

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 33
  • Joined: 01 Mar 2020

Posted 24 September 2020 - 06:52 PM

This is great...I love the "what if" theory of stuff...so not to highjack the post but what would you do if you only had $800???

 

And how many of you would upgrade the stock diagonal 

 

I have a C6 scope so not all that different..:)



#22 earlyriser

earlyriser

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,887
  • Joined: 08 Nov 2016
  • Loc: Cincinnati

Posted 24 September 2020 - 07:13 PM

The first thing I’d get is a f/6.3 reducer-corrector. Sticking with 1.25” eyepieces and diagonal will save a fair amount of money. Spend the rest on a 24mm Panoptic and 18.3, 13, 9, and 7mm  Delites or 13, 9, and 7mm Nagler type 6s. 



#23 NorthernlatAK

NorthernlatAK

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,066
  • Joined: 22 Sep 2018

Posted 24 September 2020 - 07:29 PM

Get one apollo 11...

#24 BillP

BillP

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 20,482
  • Joined: 26 Nov 2006
  • Loc: Spotsylvania, VA

Posted 24 September 2020 - 10:05 PM

The first thing I’d get is a f/6.3 reducer-corrector. Sticking with 1.25” eyepieces and diagonal will save a fair amount of money. Spend the rest on a 24mm Panoptic and 18.3, 13, 9, and 7mm  Delites or 13, 9, and 7mm Nagler type 6s. 

waytogo.gif Definitely would do that also if non-edge/ACF.  Then I would get, all long ER, all 1.25":

 

$435 = $272+66+$97 - Baader Zeiss Spec 35mm clear aperture prism diagonal (T-2 part #01B), T Adapter (BTA) for SC and MAK Telescopes (T-2 part #21), 1.25" ClickLock Eyepiece Clamp 1¼" with built in diopter-adjustment (T-2 part #08).

 

$189 - 24mm APM UFF (53x)

 

$239 - 12.5mm Morpheus (102x)

 

$239 - 9mm Morpheus (142x)

 

$239 - 6.5mm Morpheus (197x)

 

$217 - 2.5x Powermate

 

------

$1558


  • Thomas_M44 likes this

#25 25585

25585

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 10,321
  • Joined: 29 Aug 2017
  • Loc: In a valley, in the UK.

Posted 25 September 2020 - 01:22 AM

Pair of Docters for bino + top-up = spent!




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics