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Maksutov - would it make me happy?

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#26 AREZ

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 05:34 AM

Thanks again everyone for you opinions. I need some time to digest now;)

#27 AREZ

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 06:23 AM

Maybe one sub-question - could getting some quite good eyepiece help me with the moon and planets (there is only Mars now, anyway)  in the meantime? I mean something for the maximum practical magnification. What magnification can I practically achieve with my scope and what eyepiece would you recommend? The views I now have of the Moon are amazing, but only to a certain level of magnification - I believe the Baader 1.25 "Classic Ortho 6mm that I have now is on the limit for this. 

 

I currently have only a) the basic set included with the skywatcher, b) eyepieces that came with the Baader Q-turret (https://www.teleskop...--1-Barlow.html) and c) Skywatcher 2.5mm Plossl that I was given for free by the seller and that I consider practically useless.

 

Is an expensive eyepiece a gamechanger in this regards? 

 

I know, these questions might sound dumb, but I have no comparison, I have never looked through a different scope than mine and so have no clue...



#28 bobhen

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 07:25 AM

Maybe one sub-question - could getting some quite good eyepiece help me with the moon and planets (there is only Mars now, anyway)  in the meantime? I mean something for the maximum practical magnification. What magnification can I practically achieve with my scope and what eyepiece would you recommend? The views I now have of the Moon are amazing, but only to a certain level of magnification - I believe the Baader 1.25 "Classic Ortho 6mm that I have now is on the limit for this. 

 

I currently have only a) the basic set included with the skywatcher, b) eyepieces that came with the Baader Q-turret (https://www.teleskop...--1-Barlow.html) and c) Skywatcher 2.5mm Plossl that I was given for free by the seller and that I consider practically useless.

 

Is an expensive eyepiece a gamechanger in this regards? 

 

I know, these questions might sound dumb, but I have no comparison, I have never looked through a different scope than mine and so have no clue...

Those Baader eyepieces are excellent. You won’t gain much if anything in image quality by getting something else. You, of course, can get eyepieces with a "wider field of view" but you won’t gain anything in image quality.

 

If you want better images from your SW 250, you will need to replace the primary mirror with a custom mirror from Zambuto or another custom mirror maker. That will make the biggest improvement in image quality, much more than eyepieces. HERE is a link.

 

Bob



#29 AREZ

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 08:07 AM

Thanks a lot Bob.

 

That is surprising, honestly I did not think my eyepieces are any good, considering their price compared to others - EUR 250 for the turret and four eyepieces, whilst there are eyepieces ranging from EUR 250 to 500 per one EP:)

 

It seems that I have aimed too high since the beginning and got stuff too good for a beginner, so now I have nowhere to go to get improvements, unless I want to spend a lot of money.

 

Oh, wow, those custom mirrors are pricey:) Considering I would have to pay for shipment, import fees and VAT, that would get me easily 50 percent over their price list. Hm, that I might think about, one day:)



#30 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 08:33 AM

A mak's strength is it's long focal length. That results in higher magnifications using the same eyepieces. You may get to 200x in your f4.7 newt, but it will be a miserable experience using an EP with an exit pupil the size of a purely theoretical particle. I can get to 200x in my 7" mak with a 26mm ep and a barlow. That is way more comfortable than 4mm in a fast telescope.

 

:scratchhead:

 

The exit pupil in the Newtonian will be larger, it is purely a function of aperture and magnification.

 

Exit pupil = Aperture/Magnification

 

  At 200x, the 10 inch provides a 1.25 mm exit pupil, the 180mm,  0.9mm.  What that means is that at the same magnification, the 10 inch Newtonian will be almost exactly twice as bright as the 180mm Mak.  And it has greater resolving power as well. 

 

To get 200x in a telescope with a 1200mm focal length requires a 6mm eyepiece or a 12mm eyepiece with a 2x Barlow.    With a Newtonian, it's typical to use negative-positive eyepieces so the eye relief is comfortable.  Your Barlow-Plossl is basically a negative-positive design.  With a Newtonian, you could use a 5x Barlow instead of a 2x.

 

Larger exit pupils are more comfortable, with the right eyepieces, plenty of eye relief.

 

The important thing is is that Arez lives at 50 degrees north.  This generally means whatever scope he chooses for planetary and double star observing will be seeing limited.  These past years, Jupiter and Saturn are low on the horizon for observers in the Northern Hemisphere. For someone at 50 degrees north, they only be at 27 degrees and 25 degrees respectively at the maximum.  This is why Arez was seeing very poor planetary views.

 

With the 10 inch, he has plenty of capability. I think a 4 inch apo refractor would make a good companion for the 10 inch.  Many observers in northern latitudes find the thermal stability and efficient optics of a refractor is a good fit.

 

Jon


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#31 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 08:41 AM

If you want better images from your SW 250, you will need to replace the primary mirror with a custom mirror from Zambuto or another custom mirror maker. That will make the biggest improvement in image quality, much more than eyepieces. HERE is a link.

 

Bob

 

I suspect that at 50 degrees North, the limit is mostly the seeing and the mirror probably not the issue.

 

But beyond that, there is more to the performance of an eyepiece than just it's on-axis performance.  Eye relief is helps greatly with comfort, wider fields of view and off-axis sharpness are both big players.  A 6 mm ortho might be very similar to a 6mm 82 degree in the center of the field but the 82 degree will have at least twice the eye relief and about twice the field of view.  

 

It's a very different presentation.  

 

Jon



#32 Sandy Swede

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 11:55 AM

scratchhead2.gif

 

 

 

 

 

The important thing is is that Arez lives at 50 degrees north.  This generally means whatever scope he chooses for planetary and double star observing will be seeing limited.  These past years, Jupiter and Saturn are low on the horizon for observers in the Northern Hemisphere. For someone at 50 degrees north, they only be at 27 degrees and 25 degrees respectively at the maximum.  This is why Arez was seeing very poor planetary views.

 

With the 10 inch, he has plenty of capability. I think a 4 inch apo refractor would make a good companion for the 10 inch.  Many observers in northern latitudes find the thermal stability and efficient optics of a refractor is a good fit.

 

Jon

 

Once again, Jon nails it, IMO.  I had not given enough weight to this consideration.  Unless you can afford both the Mak and the apo, I suggest you get an apo.  Would AREZ benefit from a reflective overlayment to the set up area of his terrace?


Edited by Sandy Swede, 06 March 2021 - 11:57 AM.


#33 LouHalikman

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 12:18 PM

I have always regretted selling my Intes 6" Mak.  Images were razor sharp on moon and planets, and with a light weight mount it was easy to set up and take home. I even took it to Hawaii for some amazing viewing. ( I have  a permanent observatory now, but then I lived in the city and had to travel a bit for decent viewing. )  A used Mak of 6 or 7 inches will be a friend forever.  Lou


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#34 sportfan1969

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 09:00 PM

Arez,  

 

You may want to look into the Explore Scientific David H Levy Comet Hunter, it's a Carbon-Fiber Maksutov-Newtonian with an aperture of 152mm, a Focal Length of 731mm, and a quite fast focal ratio of 4.8; best of all it only weighs 15.1 Lbs.  It would be a very good match with your EQ6R and provide exceptional tracking due to its low weight.  If you can find one, it retails for $799.00 here in the USA and should be within the budget you specified.

 

I am using the predecessor to the Comet Hunter, it's the Bresser Messier 152mm Carbon Fiber Maksutov-Newtonian.  It has an ever-so-slightly longer focal length (740mm) and is also an f4.8.  I would still recommend the Comet Hunter as the Bresser was manufactured a few years prior and even the manufacturer has no technical information on this scope and you would struggle with after-sale support from them regarding the focal plane distance from the secondary mirror. (see an excerpt for a recent email from Bresser to me regarding this below)  

 

"item number 4852920 was the predecessor model of the current MN-152 telescope with item number 4852740. Unfortunately, we no longer have any documentation of the exact focus position from the old version.
Why do you have so many long adapters between the camera and the focuser? With an eyepiece, you can determine the approximate focal plane and then position the camera accordingly.

Freundliche Grüße · Kind regards
Ihr Bresser Service-Team
Your Bresser service team

Bresser GmbH
Gutenbergstr. 2, 46414 Rhede, Germany
E-Mail: service@bresser.de - Web: https://www.bresser.de
Phone: +49 2872 8074-0 | Fax +49 2872 8074-444

Registergericht Coesfeld HRB 14674 - USt.-ID: DE 124169522 - WEEE-Reg.: DE 34323861
Geschäftsführung/Management: Helmut Ebbert"

 

Again, I don't think for the money, you could go wrong with the Comet Hunter,  I'm sure at this point you are familiar with collimation, and you'll benefit from not needing to purchase another reduce/flattener as the Maskutov Corrector plate reduces Coma almost completely (better than a Baader Planetarium MPCC Mark III).

 

Good luck with your search and clear skies!



#35 AREZ

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 03:52 AM

Everyone, thanks again for your replies, it has been very helpful.

 

After a few nights of nice weather (after many months of just clouds) that I have spent with my current setup trying to imagine, I have come to a conclusion that probably it is not time for me to get a new scope yet. The current one is still much more potent than I am able to use with my limited experience.

 

I will look into possibilities to slightly upgrade the current setup - regardless of getting a new scope or not, I wanted to finally get a proper source to use my camera cooling and also to get ZWO EAF autofocuser. Further to that, I might look into some nice wide field eyepiece for moon observing, maybe a come reducer, flocking paper to improve the inside of the scope etc. So you might find some new topic regarding this type of equipment me asking for opinions quite soon smile.gif


Edited by AREZ, 08 March 2021 - 03:53 AM.

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#36 Sandy Swede

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 05:58 AM

Many times, the decision to wait can be the best decision.  As to observing the moon, if you now do not have one, I suggest a polarizing moon filter.  It is nice to be able to vary the degree of light transmission during the moon's phases.  If you can find a University Optics or Baader orthorscopic eyepiece specifically for moon and planets, I believe that you would like the view.  They come up for sale here on CN Classifieds from time to time.  Even a new Baader orthoscopic ep is less than $80.  Or, if you just received your stimulus check, you could buy a nice used Zeiss ortho for a mere $1,000.  lol.gif



#37 AREZ

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 12:14 PM

Sandy, can you please send a link which eyepieces exactly you mean?



#38 jimandlaura26

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 05:29 PM

Maybe one sub-question - could getting some quite good eyepiece help me with the moon and planets (there is only Mars now, anyway)  in the meantime? I mean something for the maximum practical magnification. What magnification can I practically achieve with my scope and what eyepiece would you recommend? The views I now have of the Moon are amazing, but only to a certain level of magnification - I believe the Baader 1.25 "Classic Ortho 6mm that I have now is on the limit for this. 

 

I currently have only a) the basic set included with the skywatcher, b) eyepieces that came with the Baader Q-turret (https://www.teleskop...--1-Barlow.html) and c) Skywatcher 2.5mm Plossl that I was given for free by the seller and that I consider practically useless.

 

Is an expensive eyepiece a gamechanger in this regards? 

 

I know, these questions might sound dumb, but I have no comparison, I have never looked through a different scope than mine and so have no clue...

I am going to second the opinions that support purchase of a Mak-Cass. Good value ($ vs. performance) and I am a committed refractor guy at the 3”-4” objective size - but I REALLY like my 6” (150 mm) Sky-Watcher Mak-Cass too.

 

On the eyepiece matter, your field of view is limited to about 1 degree or less. So while a classic high quality eyepiece will give you an immersive FOV, it won’t truly be wide. That said, it will be more immersive than Orthoscopics and Kellners. I own all. Use all. I use current generation Baader Classic Orthos and Tak Starbase Orthos/Kellners for planets and doubles in a Baader Q-Turret; and for value (cost/performance) and ease of use (turret) really cannot be beat. 

 

Here’s two pictures of my light weight 150mm Mak-Class. Very easily used on light-weight alt-az and GEM mounts. That’s a 22mm Nagler T4 EP, a great view - but the simple design, sharp across field (90%), low scatter, striking star color Orthos/Kellners have an important benefit for small targets of interest - especially on a tracking mount. Max magnification in your situation probably no better than about 200-300x, which correlates well with the 10-6mm Baader eyepieces; same as my situation (light pollution, next to house, concrete deck backyard)...

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Edited by jimandlaura26, 08 March 2021 - 05:50 PM.

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