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  1. #1
    backyard_astronomer's Avatar
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    Default Looking to buy a new eyepiece + barlow



    I'm fortunate having my birthday just two days after Christmas because I can ask for extravagant gifts, like telescope accessories.

    Anyway I have a 130 EQ with 20mm and 10mm Celestron eyepieces. Basically kit eyepieces so I'm not sure of their quality.

    I want to get more closeup views of the planets and nebulas but then I also thought I'd go for a wider view too.

    So what I'm thinking is a barlow and a 40mm. Because with the barlow my 10mm will be like a 5mm. Is that right?
    Also I don't really know the differences between low and powerful eyepieces. The eyepieces I'm looking at are between $35-$118.

    I can't really post a link because the website doesn't allow it. But the Plossl eyepieces all seem to be around $39. Even the barlows are that cheap. It seems too affordable to be a good thing. But I heard that Plossl are high quality eyepieces.
    So what I'm looking for is one eyepiece that I can photograph a wide view of stars with, a closeup one for planets/nebula/galaxies. It won't make too much of a difference because my scope is only 5".

    The 20mm I got gives good field of view so I was thinking maybe a 32mm or 40mm. But should I get a barlow or a 8mm or 6mm eyepiece? I'm just not sure how good they'll be for my scope. It's 650mm and I've done the math for magnification of each eyepiece plus the barlow. But I'm worried that the 6mm won't give me a good picture.

    And what are zoom eyepieces like in quality? Camera telephoto lenses seem to not be sharp as prime lenses.

    Or could you recommend some eyepieces that will be best for me?
    Kit: Celestron AstroMaster 130EQ MD, Canon 40D SLR, 8x30 binoculars, Tasco 40mm spotting scope 15x-45x

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  2. #2
    mplanet62's Avatar
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    Hi mate,
    40 mm and barlow would not be the best thing to get. With 650 mm focus distance of your score 40 mm will give you just 16.25 magnification (power). And with 2X barlow it just doubles your existing 20mm eyepiece. I would go for 25mm and 2X barlow. It gives you nice wide field views at 26 power and with 2X Barlow is suitable for Moon/planetary viewing. Maybe, I would throw some nice 8 mm eyepiece in there too. Makes 4 mm with barlow - and it's about the maximum you can get from your telescope. Boxsets are not the best, I'd rather go for some GSO barlow and EPs. I believe, in OZ they're sold by Bintel under it's own name. They're very good quality for the price.

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  4. #3
    backyard_astronomer's Avatar
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    The only 8mm eyepiece I can find on the Bintel site is a Orion Stratus for $179. There's also a Tele Vue for $109. But there is a Plossl 9mm for $39. Will that be good enough? Or I could just buy the cheaper 4mm Plossl and not use the barlow on it?
    Kit: Celestron AstroMaster 130EQ MD, Canon 40D SLR, 8x30 binoculars, Tasco 40mm spotting scope 15x-45x

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    if you buy cheap,you get cheap.
    getting a 4mm would really be trying to push your scopes
    capabilities.i have a 130eq(skywatcher),and the highest i go
    is my 15mm barlowed (7.5mm),and that pushes it a little.
    i more often tend to use my 9mm.
    a good 8-24mm zoom would be good.
    a recent comparison that was posted here recently,gave
    good reviews for the skywatcher brand.the hyperion is a
    highly regarded item too.
    single ep'S?
    it's been said,look at the gso's.a very capable ep for the price.
    they are equal to,and sometimes better than some more
    expensive brands.
    also keep this in mind,they manufacture for some other well
    known companies,who simply relabel them and sell at a
    higher cost.
    clear skies,
    andy

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    andy

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  6. #5
    backyard_astronomer's Avatar
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    The cheap EP's are GSO's. Cheap meaning affordable.
    OK so I'm thinking about getting the Bintel Plossl 9mm, 25mm and Barlow x2 (even if I don't use it - good to have for when I can use it). And I'll throw in a Nebula Contrast filter too.
    Kit: Celestron AstroMaster 130EQ MD, Canon 40D SLR, 8x30 binoculars, Tasco 40mm spotting scope 15x-45x

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  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by backyard_astronomer View Post
    OK so I'm thinking about getting the Bintel Plossl 9mm, 25mm and Barlow x2 (even if I don't use it - good to have for when I can use it). And I'll throw in a Nebula Contrast filter too.
    Sounds like a plan; but I wouldn't hurry too much about the filter - borrow one if you can to see if you like it before getting one; I have several filters but seldom use them, they dim the view and I prefer viewing on the raw.

    Best,

    Hernando

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    yes,gso's are cheap.i have a set and they work fine.
    as i said,they out perform other more expensive brands.
    i just feel that the reason they keep prices quite low
    is the fact that they manufacture for several other
    brands,so they keep their own name pieces at a
    reasonable cost.they perform better than the price
    tag suggests.
    cleare skies,
    andy

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    andy

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    revelation 20X80 bino's,camlink tp-2500 camera/bino tripod.
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    ARCHAEOLOGISTS WILL DATE ANY OLD THING

  9. #8
    ibase's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by backyard_astronomer View Post
    And what are zoom eyepieces like in quality?
    Zoom EP's have suffered ridicule and bad reputation for the longest time, mainly because of the low quality ones that came along early on that promised heaven and earth to the unsuspecting buyer. The views were blurry and the apparent field of veiw (AFOV) were restricted and straw like. Fast forward to the 21st century, and you have something like the Hyperion 8-24mm zoom, from German co. Baader Planetarium, a world-class EP that does not give up much to the more expensive fixed-focal length EP's and have a wide 70-ish degree AFOV (drift tested; published is 68) at its 8mm setting (compare that with the 50-ish AFOV of plossls); I have one and have let my veteran astro buddies peer through it and the reaction invariably is WOW! - and this is a zoom eyepeiece? The obvious advantage of a zoom EP is that one does not have to keep on swapping EP's in and out of the diagonal; just twist the magnification ring and the power changes instantly; and one can quickly dial in the ideal magnification for the seeing conditions prevailing at the observing site and adjust swiftly if the atmosphere stabilizes letting one catch those fleeting moments when a planetary detail suddenly pops up - something that won't happen if one has to fumble and switch EP's in the diagonal. But zooms are not for everyone, some prefer fixed focal length EP's but since you're interested enough to mention it, there's a good chance that you might like it; check out the sticky zoom threads above to know more about them. Good luck!

    Best,

    Hernando
    Last edited by ibase; 09-23-2010 at 02:08 PM.

  10. #9
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    I was just going to ask this question. Thanks for the info guys!

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by backyard_astronomer View Post
    The only 8mm eyepiece I can find on the Bintel site is a Orion Stratus for $179. There's also a Tele Vue for $109. But there is a Plossl 9mm for $39. Will that be good enough? Or I could just buy the cheaper 4mm Plossl and not use the barlow on it?
    TeleVue is a great EP. I own one. But if you have good eyesight and do not want to pay extra, 9 mm plossl will do. Do not buy 4mm EP. Rather use 8-9 mm and barlow. You will see no difference with your telescope.
    Cheers

 

 
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