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Thread: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

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    Default Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?



    Hi Folks,

    I see eyepieces that say best for planetary, or best for deep sky objects.

    Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing? Say waterfowl, or general bird watching?

    If I had an eyepiece that was best for planetary, or DSO, would that be in some way less useful for waterfowl?

    Harry
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Best for planetary or best for DSOs is most often referring to field of view more so than a particular design of EP. Sometimes it is in reference to the number of elements to a particular design regarding planetary EPs, but this is very subtle with little difference seen by most. I use my ES 82s with every object and would prefer a wide design for your application as well.
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Spotting scope eyepieces are designed for terrestrial use.
    Some astronomy eyepieces would work as long as the light scatter is well controlled.
    Internal baffling and blackening would help.
    You would have to check the eyepiece first to see how well it controls incoming light.
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Thank you both,

    Looks like I don't have to worry too much about what the eyepiece is best suited for in astronomy. Just have to make sure it can dampen the excess light in daytime.

    Harry
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Yes. Avoid eyepieces that mention a "ring of fire". Some mid to high end wide field eyepieces have that.

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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Tele Vue has a section on its website that notes the "avoid daytime use" eyepieces. It has to do with ease of eye placement and the fact that your eye's exit pupil is far smaller in bright light, so this also affects the suitability of any eyepiece/telescope combination that gives a large exit pupil. You are also interested in a clean distortion free view to the edges of the field, so most spotting scope eyepieces give up a little field of view to improve the curvature and sharpness all the way to the edges. This is especially an issue for bird watchers who want to use their spotting scopes for afocal photography.

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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Boy, you folks are just full of information. Thank you.

    Harry
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Hello Harry,

    when you watching the spotting scopes equipments, the most used eyepieces are those giving you the exit pupil around 2mm. Larger exit pupil will "blind" your eye.
    Eyepieces for the terrestrial spotting have UV/violet cut - a sort of skylight suppression. Otherwise, the long range views would loose the contrast.
    The high end spotting eyepieces have eventually spectral charecteristics to increase the color contrast also on the objects far away.

    The astronomy eyepieces don't work as good on the terrestrial views as the dedicated spotting scopes eyepieces.
    This has been tested by the birder's shootouts, as the small to medium aperture astronomy equipment costs typically 1/5 of a premium spotting scope. Even the expensive astronomy Pentax XW eyepieces mounted on the Pentax spotting scope offer views inferior to the dedicated spotting optics.

    I have in my arsenal both:
    an astronomy refractor and the leica APO Televid spotting scope
    astronomy eyepieces (Pentax, Tele Vue, ...), and the spotting scopes eyepieces (Leica, Swarovski, Zeiss)

    On the other hand, the premium spotting eyepieces win on some difficult astronomy targets over the astronomy eyepieces. I have posted quite a few shootouts with the spotting eyepieces.

    Hoping this helps,

    JG
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Thank you JG,

    That stuff is good to know.
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    Default Re: Are there eyepieces that are best for terrestrial viewing?

    Pentax XW eyepieces were initially designed for Pentax spotting scopes.
    And you know what? They are the absolute best for astronomy targets, especially planets.
    They also show more nebulosity than Naglers. No distortions across the field make them
    really good for clusters. They are just unmatched, but at that price they should be.
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    Newtman but some refractors allowed.

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