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Thread: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

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    Default Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look



    Opened my new Explore Scientific 8.8mm eyepiece tonight and just wanted to go over my initial impressions. It is, of course, cloudy out there so there is no first light as of yet.

    This is my first Explore Scientific product of any sort, so wasn't sure what to expect. My first impression on opening the shipping box was "Wow, what a cool box!" And it is. I like the star chart motif on it.

    IMG_20160408_195513_sm.jpg

    And then, my next impression was again, "This is really a cool box!" once I actually opened the box. The lid is magnetically closed and unfolds, again with the star chart pattern.

    IMG_20160408_195547_sm.jpg

    Now onto the eyepiece itself. It's much smaller than I expected. It's a bit taller but roughly around the same size as my X-Cel LX eyepieces. It seems to be a well put together eyepiece as well, with a nice eyecup that rolls up if you want it and caps that stay on snugly but not too tight.

    IMG_20160408_195647_sm.jpg

    Here's the eyepiece in with the rest of my collection for reference:

    IMG_20160408_195928.jpg

    Now, obviously my X-Cel LX 9mm is kind of redundant with an 8.8mm in the collection, but that was the intention. This was meant to replace it. While I rather like 60 degree eyepieces, 82 degrees gives a lot more drift time in a dob. The two are quite comparable in size.

    IMG_20160408_200122.jpg

    Note however that there is a difference in the diameter of the top lens, with the X-Cel LX having a much wider lens. But the advertised eye relief on the X-Cel is larger than the ES so that makes sense to me, and every eyepiece I've ever used or seen that has good eye relief has a wider lens. The eye relief on the ES seems decent in some dry runs with the EP towards a light source though.

    When looking through the eyepiece with the eyecup up, it's hard to see the field stop. You really need to move your head around to see it. But the eyecup itself seems comfortable. But the real judge of comfort will come when I get to put this in my telescope.

    Coatings are a greenish colour. The X-Cel LX's have a yellowish colour that turns purplish when light hits it. So there is definitely a difference in the coatings. My Luminos has greenish coatings like the ES as well. Don't know what the difference is between the two coatings but considering the views in the Luminos seem nicer than the X-Cel's it stands to reason that these greenish coloured coatings are better.

    The weight of the ES is hefty for it's size. It's noticeably heavier than the X-Cel 9mm. The 12mm X-Cel actually seems about the same weight as the 8.8 ES. The eyepiece is not heavy per-se but it is heavier than the 9mm X-Cel for sure. But there are more lenses at play here so that makes sense.

    Overall, I am happy with the build of this eyepiece. It seems like a quality eyepiece. But how it performs for me is still unknown as I can't get outside to use it right now. Looking forward to my first light with it though!
    Last edited by wgbeatty; 04-09-2016 at 03:53 AM.
    William.

    Telescopes - 203mm (8") F/5.9 Skywatcher Dob, 102mm F/9.8 Celestron C102-HD refractor
    Eyepieces - Agena SWA 70 deg 38mm, Agena SWA 70 deg 26mm, Celestron Luminos 82 deg 15mm, Celestron X-Cel LX 60 deg 12mm, 9mm, ES 82 deg 8.8mm, Orion 55 deg Edge-On 6mm

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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    I'm sure you will enjoy the views through your ES 8.8mm even better than your views of the box William. I love the 11mm and 18mm in the 82 degree series. I got the 18mm about three years ago and it came in a dark blue box. I got the 11mm 2 years ago and it came in the star chart-style box you got, so I guess somewhere between 2 and 3 years ago ES started using those. I hope you get out under some clear skies with it soon! Let us know how you like it.
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Congrats on the 8.8mm, William! I've been really enjoying mine. It adds that extra kick of oomph behind my 11mm to help shake those really faint fuzzies loose, and is wonderful as a planetary eyepiece too!

    Be careful though...before you know it, your eyepiece case will look like this:



    Bryan

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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    I have the ES 8.8mm eyepiece and love it. It works great in my refractors and also in my LS8 SCT, when seeing conditions permit. I get great sharp contrasty views. i relly like it on Jupiter, can get all the moons in the eyepiece!! But my slowest scope is F/6.5, so just about all eyepieces work great in my scopes!!
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Quote Originally Posted by bladekeeper View Post
    Congrats on the 8.8mm, William! I've been really enjoying mine. It adds that extra kick of oomph behind my 11mm to help shake those really faint fuzzies loose, and is wonderful as a planetary eyepiece too!

    Be careful though...before you know it, your eyepiece case will look like this:



    Eventually, I hope. Despite having a good job, it's harder to shake money loose than I'd like for this hobby, what with bills, saving for retirement and the kids education, house repairs and whatnot. Your case looks to be exactly the same as one I can get at Canadian Tire with the pluck foam. Looks like it works very well, so I'll have to pick one up.
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Wow, that's quite an eyepiece collection Bryan! One for every Messier! Is that the 68 degree or the 100 degree series in the lower row of your picture?
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Quote Originally Posted by stargazer55 View Post
    Wow, that's quite an eyepiece collection Bryan! One for every Messier! Is that the 68 degree or the 100 degree series in the lower row of your picture?
    Zhumell Z series.

    William, this case is a Harbor Freight special in the US. From what I've read, these are similar or the same as the Canadian Tire offering. Good cases for the money. I have three: one for EP's, one for other scope accessories, and one spare presently holding atlases, sketch forms, and other reference material for use in the field.
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Good luck with the new EP. Believe it or not, I returned a 6mm Delos and got the 8.8 ES EP in its place. It's a great lens. First night with it, Jupiter was showing the GRS and it was the best I have ever seen it.
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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Quote Originally Posted by bladekeeper View Post
    Zhumell Z series.

    William, this case is a Harbor Freight special in the US. From what I've read, these are similar or the same as the Canadian Tire offering. Good cases for the money. I have three: one for EP's, one for other scope accessories, and one spare presently holding atlases, sketch forms, and other reference material for use in the field.
    It's on sale for $21.99 right now (regular $49.99)...so I bought one!
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    Eyepieces - Agena SWA 70 deg 38mm, Agena SWA 70 deg 26mm, Celestron Luminos 82 deg 15mm, Celestron X-Cel LX 60 deg 12mm, 9mm, ES 82 deg 8.8mm, Orion 55 deg Edge-On 6mm

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    Default Re: Explore Scientific 8.8mm 82 degree EP First Look

    Quote Originally Posted by bladekeeper View Post
    Congrats on the 8.8mm, William! I've been really enjoying mine. It adds that extra kick of oomph behind my 11mm to help shake those really faint fuzzies loose, and is wonderful as a planetary eyepiece too!
    Is it significantly better than the 9mm of a Zhumell Dob?
    ... Henk. Telescopes: 6" Mak-Newt (Comet Hunter), ES ED127CF, ES ED80, Zhumell Z12, Coulter Odyssey 10, AT6RC, Venture RX-7, Celestron Skymaster 20x80, Mounts and tripod: Losmandy G11S, AVX, LXD55, Tiltall, Cameras: Fuji X-a1, Canon SX40, Xt, XSi, T6, ELPH 100HS, DIY: Dob and camera barndoor trackers, afocal adapter, Dob with foldable base and Az/Alt setting circles, Accessories: SSAG, Plossls, Barlows, Telrad, laser collimators (Seben LK1, Z12, Howie Glatter), Cheshire, 2 Orion RACIs 8x50, Software: DSS, ImageMagick, PHD, Nebulosity, Photo Gallery, Gimp, CHDK

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