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Thread: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

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    Default Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them



    I had previously purchased Vixen NPL eyepieces in 8 and 10mm focal lengths. I was impressed with those enough to go back and purchase the 25, 20, and 15mm and let my two daughters and my wife give those to me as Christmas presents instead of them shopping around for something I would most likely not use. After looking at those when they came in, I ordered the 30mm.

    When the 30mm came in, I could not resist taking it out for a trial run. Wow! Even in the 80mm f/5 refractor, which can put an eyepiece like a Plossl or these Symetrical eyepieces through its paces and then some. Naturally, there is still some field curvature that is uncorrected, but it takes a much more expensive eyepiece, with more elements to take care of all of it, if even a high dollar one can.

    With that experience, I took out all of them for a trial run before re-boxing and wrapping. They all performed very well. I had a little trouble at first with the 25mm, giving me some doubts about it, but what I found was that I was having some trouble getting it focused. I am not sure why, but I believe the problem was with me and not that particular eyepiece.

    I also checked them out in combination with my Siebert Telecentric 4X Barlow from the 30mm, all the way down to the 10mm. I did not do it with the 8mm because that would be outside the magnification limit of the scope. I used the Orion Nebula, the Double Cluster, and the Moon for the Barlow testing. I found that they all Barlowed well with no vignette with any of them.

    If there is a weak eyepiece in what I have, from 30mm, down to 8mm, it would have to be the 8mm. But, even that one is no slouch and I am very pleased with it as well.

    I consider this group of eyepieces to be a "class act" all the way up and down the line that I have.
    Bill Steen
    Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Meade LX 70 8R & 6M, Infinity 60, 80 & 102, Polaris 112, 127, & 130, DS 2102 OTA, DS 90 OTA, 60 mm f/15, Lightbridge 12, Lightbridge Mini 82, Eclipseview 76 & 114, Sky Shed 3 Bay POD, LPI-G Color

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    Very nice, Bill. You've got some fine presents to open on Christmas.

    Thanks for the review and report on these, sir!
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    Bryan

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    f/5; Celestron C6-R f/8; ES AR127 f/6.4; ES AR127 f/9.4; Stellarvue SV102T f/7; ES AR102 f/9.8;
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    Mounts: Celestron AVX; Bresser EXOS-2; ES Twilight I; ES Twilight II; iOptron Cube-G; AZ3/wood tripod; Vixen
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    Eyepieces: GSO Super Plössl 40mm, 32mm, 15mm, 9mm; ES 82° Series; GSO Superview 30mm; Celestron Plössl 26mm, 20mm; ES 70° 25mm; ES Plössl 25mm; Vite Aspheric 23mm, 10mm, 4mm; Orion Expanse 20mm, 9mm; KK Ortho 18mm, 12.5mm; Bresser 70° 15mm; Coulter Optical 12.5mm; BCO 10mm; ES 62° 9mm; Zhumell Z Series 5mm
    Binoculars: Pentax PCF WP II 10×50, Bresser Corvette 10×50, Bresser Hunter 16×50 and 8×40, Garrett
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    12×60 LW, Gordon 10×50, Apogee 20×100

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    Galaxy Hunter's Creed - When you play whack-a-mole, sometimes you hit 'em on the head, sometimes you miss 'em. But its always fun to play, and if you don't play, you ain't gettin no moles! - KT4HX

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    Good to hear that they are performing well for you, I have always liked the Vixen Plossls
    Refractors: Antares 105 f/15, Celestron 150 f/8, Stellarvue NHNG 80 f/6.9, TAL 100RS f/10, TS 102 f/11, UR 70 f/10, Vixen SD115s f/7.7
    Mounts: Celestron SLT w/ pier mod & EQ-3 tripod, Celestron hypertuned CG-5 w/ tracking motor & Argo Navis, Manfrotto 028B w/ Stellarvue M2C, Manfrotto 055PRO w/ 128RC, TAL-1 HD EQ, Vixen SXP w/ HAL-130 SXG & half pier
    Diagonals: 2" Astro-Physics MaxBright, 2" Zeiss/ Baader prism, 2" Baader Herschel Wedge (Photo Version), 2"
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    Amici prism, 2" Stellarvue Dielectric, 2" TeleVue Everbrite
    Eyepieces: A-Z

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    The weakest link in the optical chain is the large nut located directly behind the
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    / camera. - Gabrielle

    Ya gotta keep this Apo/
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    thing in some balance of perspective. Apos are awesome, but long focus Achros aren't that far behind them - Siriusandthepup (CN)

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    Thanks, Bryan! Some additional tidbits:
    Eventually I got the magnification too high and the light diminished too much, but somewhere along the way, I saw a fifth star in the trapezium using the Infinity 80.
    With the 10mm and the Barlow, at 160X I was able to get a clear look at the disks on the two major stars in Castor. There was still some of what I call flare, but it was diminished enough to clearly see the disks. The space between them was about equal to the width of the disks.

    Looking around in a drawer, I found a little 9mm Plossl that had come with one of my LX 70 optical tubes. I had ignored the 25mm and 9mm eyepieces that came with the scopes. They were not in the 4000 series, were smaller, and painted silver. I had tried one of the 25mm ones in the Infinity 80, but it did not do as well around the outside of the field as other 25mm that I had, but I had not tried a 9mm. Tonight, I put a 9mm in the scope and found that it is a good eyepiece. The look of the field matched what I was seeing with both the 8mm and 10mm Vixen....plus...its focal position was exactly the same as the Vixens. I am not sure what is going on, but I am putting it in the string. I did not try it with the Barlow, but I am thinking it will give me the very highest magnification I believe the Infinity 80 could be capable of when viewing the Moon under ideal conditions.
    Bill Steen
    Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Meade LX 70 8R & 6M, Infinity 60, 80 & 102, Polaris 112, 127, & 130, DS 2102 OTA, DS 90 OTA, 60 mm f/15, Lightbridge 12, Lightbridge Mini 82, Eclipseview 76 & 114, Sky Shed 3 Bay POD, LPI-G Color

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    Well, the NPL eyepieces are all wrapped up for Christmas and will remain so until the grandkids come on the 27th......anticipation!!!
    Bill Steen
    Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Meade LX 70 8R & 6M, Infinity 60, 80 & 102, Polaris 112, 127, & 130, DS 2102 OTA, DS 90 OTA, 60 mm f/15, Lightbridge 12, Lightbridge Mini 82, Eclipseview 76 & 114, Sky Shed 3 Bay POD, LPI-G Color

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    And the look of surprise when you open them1
    Have a Merry Christmas Bill
    Refractors: Antares 105 f/15, Celestron 150 f/8, Stellarvue NHNG 80 f/6.9, TAL 100RS f/10, TS 102 f/11, UR 70 f/10, Vixen SD115s f/7.7
    Mounts: Celestron SLT w/ pier mod & EQ-3 tripod, Celestron hypertuned CG-5 w/ tracking motor & Argo Navis, Manfrotto 028B w/ Stellarvue M2C, Manfrotto 055PRO w/ 128RC, TAL-1 HD EQ, Vixen SXP w/ HAL-130 SXG & half pier
    Diagonals: 2" Astro-Physics MaxBright, 2" Zeiss/ Baader prism, 2" Baader Herschel Wedge (Photo Version), 2"
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    Amici prism, 2" Stellarvue Dielectric, 2" TeleVue Everbrite
    Eyepieces: A-Z

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    The weakest link in the optical chain is the large nut located directly behind the
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    / camera. - Gabrielle

    Ya gotta keep this Apo/
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    thing in some balance of perspective. Apos are awesome, but long focus Achros aren't that far behind them - Siriusandthepup (CN)

    Refractors kick arse precisely because they don't hide behind excuses. That is, they have no obstructions to hide behind. - Jon Isaacs (CN)

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    I have my Vixen NPL eyepieces unwrapped and in service now. They all continue to be very nice, but I am developing a fondness for the 30mm. It is a bit more conservative than the 32mm Super-Plossles I have or have used, but the whole field if beautiful. With the Infinity 80, the true field is 3 3/4 degrees, which is definitely enough.

    I have been looking over my eyepieces and have noticed one thing, I think. I have not found any that look to be true Plossles, with the eye lens being smaller than the field lens. In all of the ones I have, the eye lens is the same size as the field, making them Symetrical eyepieces rather than Plossles. I am beginning to think the term "Super Plossl" now is code for Symmetrical at the very least. I am beginning to wonder if there are any true Plossl eyepieces being made any more, or if they are all Symmetrical eyepieces instead.

    From what I can tell, and postulate, the Symmetrical eyepiece may do better around the outside of the field, since there is more glass near the eye for ones vision to wander around in.
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    Bill Steen
    Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Meade LX 70 8R & 6M, Infinity 60, 80 & 102, Polaris 112, 127, & 130, DS 2102 OTA, DS 90 OTA, 60 mm f/15, Lightbridge 12, Lightbridge Mini 82, Eclipseview 76 & 114, Sky Shed 3 Bay POD, LPI-G Color

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    "A separate development of the Ramsden by Gustáv Simon Plössl in 1860 led to a class of orthoscopic, achromatic, wide-field eyepieces, referred to variously as the Symmetrical, the Dial-Sight, and the Plössl" So still "technically a Plossl
    Though asymetricals are very nice to view with.
    Refractors: Antares 105 f/15, Celestron 150 f/8, Stellarvue NHNG 80 f/6.9, TAL 100RS f/10, TS 102 f/11, UR 70 f/10, Vixen SD115s f/7.7
    Mounts: Celestron SLT w/ pier mod & EQ-3 tripod, Celestron hypertuned CG-5 w/ tracking motor & Argo Navis, Manfrotto 028B w/ Stellarvue M2C, Manfrotto 055PRO w/ 128RC, TAL-1 HD EQ, Vixen SXP w/ HAL-130 SXG & half pier
    Diagonals: 2" Astro-Physics MaxBright, 2" Zeiss/ Baader prism, 2" Baader Herschel Wedge (Photo Version), 2"
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    Amici prism, 2" Stellarvue Dielectric, 2" TeleVue Everbrite
    Eyepieces: A-Z

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    The weakest link in the optical chain is the large nut located directly behind the
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    / camera. - Gabrielle

    Ya gotta keep this Apo/
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    thing in some balance of perspective. Apos are awesome, but long focus Achros aren't that far behind them - Siriusandthepup (CN)

    Refractors kick arse precisely because they don't hide behind excuses. That is, they have no obstructions to hide behind. - Jon Isaacs (CN)

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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    I like my NPLs so much I got them (and the BCOs) twice for binoviewing 40mm-6mm. The "super Plossls" are actually 5 element designs and not Plossls at all. They are also called pseudo Masuyamas (or if you're really lucky Masuyamas) and seem to have many features of the Zeiss Astroplanax design. They are quite nice!
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    Default Re: Vixen NPL Eyepieces - Initial Checkout for several of them

    They may have made a change, somewhere along the way, since you purchased yours. I have not taken mine apart to look, but the descriptions I have been able to locate now state that what I just bought have four elements. It does not really mater to me, even though I like the idea of an astroplan type eyepiece that I can buy in the $50 range. The NPLs are really nice and I am enjoying using them.

    Whether the Long Perng Plossles or the Vixen NPL eyepieces are better depends on the object being observed and the desired view. The decision is quite subjective in my opinion and each eyepiece in each set is definitely a valued tool in my tool kit.

    The only gripes I have with the Long Perng is the nutty selection of focal lengths and the gap in the short end of the series. With the Vixen, I wish they had a 12 and a 9mm eyepiece. I do not think they have Vixen's most modern coatings on them, which is one of the attributes that puts the Long Perng ahead of the Vixen for my low light level quest for Messiers.

    I think someone could have a very enjoyable carrier in astronomy with only a set of the Vixen NPL eyepieces. I believe the same thing about the later Meade 4000 yellow lettering Plossles as well, even though they are not quite as neat around the edges as the Vixen in some of the longer focal lengths.
    Bill Steen
    Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Meade LX 70 8R & 6M, Infinity 60, 80 & 102, Polaris 112, 127, & 130, DS 2102 OTA, DS 90 OTA, 60 mm f/15, Lightbridge 12, Lightbridge Mini 82, Eclipseview 76 & 114, Sky Shed 3 Bay POD, LPI-G Color

 

 
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