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Thread: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

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    Talking Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.



    Hi there. This is my first post. I hope I didn't miss a thread that could answer.
    Orion Sykyquest xt-8 Classic
    Orion 1.25" 2X Barlow, 25mm plossl, 2" Deep View 35mm
    1200mm fl

    I would like to purchase two 2" wide field eyepieces. There are so many opinions out there, so it is hard to decide which eyepieces will give me the best value/performance with my xt-8. I know that it is not wise to go too small
    (3,4mm) due to excessive magnification and ease of use. I have read opinions; no more than 350X, 300X, 250X.
    I don't want to buy an ep that will rarely be useful. Maximum mag of 350X would use an ep of 3.5mm. I know this is pushing it. If I were to buy two ep's --- maybe a 4 or 5mm and a 8 or 13mm ? The other thing is what fov. Is there a sweet spot for my xt-8? 80, 100 ?

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Welcome to the forum.

    You say you want wide field eyepieces, but you are asking about high magnification eyepieces. They are opposites.

    The rule of thumb for maximum magnification is not to exceed the aperture of the scope in millimetres. You have a 200mm scope, so your maximum magnification should be 200x. On rare occasions, the atmosphere may be still enough that you can exceed this (but don't go beyond 400x), but it will not happen more than a couple of times a year. For maximum reasonable magnification, you should not be looking at anything shorter than 6mm.

    Eyepieces in that range will not be available in 2" format. With an 82-degree eyepiece in your scope, any eyepiece 15mm or shorter will give you the whole field of view in a 1.25" format. It is only if you go over 15mm that you would benefit from the wider tube. Because of the extra expense of bigger glass and bigger metal in a competitive market, manufacturers simply don't offer high magnification eyepieces in the 2" format, because there is no benefit.

    What field of view you choose should depend on your needs. Looking at a planet, even with 200x magnification, the target will be small. There is nothing gained by having a small target swimming in a huge field. A small FOV will give you the exact same view of the planet. Only one target, the Moon, will benefit from both high magnification and wide field of view.

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by KathyNS View Post
    There is nothing gained by having a small target swimming in a huge field.
    I would think living on island you would enjoy swimming!

    I will say that some DSO's can benefit from high magnification and wider FoV's too. My 8.8mm UWA is really good at framing globulars, and is a lot more comfortable to view through than my 9mm plossl. If the goal is to avoid buying an eyepiece that is rarely going to see use, unfortunately extreme high power EP's seem to be exactly that. As Kathy says I very rarely get beyond 200x in my 10" dob, and those efforts often produce lackluster images. My opinion is, your money probably would be better spent looking to fill out some mid-range options. Recommendations there will vary depending on what your budget is.
    AbbN, j.gardavsky, DeanD and 1 others like this.

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Kathy is a lot better source of information than myself. I always read her post. She and several others here are great portals of information. I myself have been doing this for a little more than a year, but I have the 6" version of your same scope. In my experience:
    I really like the Celestron X-Cel LX, a 12mm would give you a nice moderate general purpose sky-peeper
    I use the same EP in an 18mm, my 6" is an f/8. Everything else I use would be plossls. Plossls can be surprisingly good, within the limits of comfortable eye relief. For wide field views, I use a 40mm plossl, that I am not thrilled with. Kidney beaning issues. But it makes a decent finder EP, so I keep it handy. I always lead off my viewing with Binoculars. Surprisingly for me, there are nights, I don't even graduate to the scope.

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    This may help with some pointers on picking focal lengths for your telescope.
    Article: What Astronomy Eyepieces should I get for my Telescope?
    AbbN, j.gardavsky, DeanD and 3 others like this.
    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
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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Hi and welcome to the forum. Listen to Kathy we all do! My ES 82 series 18 mm ep is my go to ep for viewing dso's in both my 10" and 12" dobs. You won't find many wide field eps with 2" barrels less than 17 or 18 mm. As others have said, some dso's can handle higher magnification but I wouldn't go lower than 12 to 14 mm.

    Remember that as magnification goes up object brightness goes down and many dso's are dim enough at low power.

    Happy viewing!
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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Thank you all for all your replies. I trust your opinions. Part of the reason for wanting widefield eps is that I wear glasses and eye relief is important to me. Using plossl's can be a pain; glasses on glasses off...I understand better now about 1.25" or 2" wf ep's and magnification. I wonder if I were to get a 17mm wf ep would there be any viewing advantage to get a 2", or would a 1.25" suffice? Being a newbie I am only viewing the moon and planets so far. Let's say I get a 8mm wf 80; would this be an optimal DSO ep for my scope in the future?

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Potato Man View Post
    Thank you all for all your replies. I trust your opinions. Part of the reason for wanting widefield eps is that I wear glasses and eye relief is important to me. Using plossl's can be a pain; glasses on glasses off...I understand better now about 1.25" or 2" wf ep's and magnification. I wonder if I were to get a 17mm wf ep would there be any viewing advantage to get a 2", or would a 1.25" suffice? Being a newbie I am only viewing the moon and planets so far. Let's say I get a 8mm wf 80; would this be an optimal DSO ep for my scope in the future?
    Welcome to the forum PM! I also observe with glasses and taking them on and off all the time is not fun. To observe with glasses on you want at least 15mm of eye relief. Most of EPs with FOV 80 deg and higher tend to have shorter eye relief, thus I suggest to look for EPs in 60-70+ deg range. Celestron X-Cel LX suggested above are very comfortable for observing with glasses on.
    j.gardavsky likes this.

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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    If you are bound and determined to have 2" EP's for higher magnification, Baader Planetarium has their Hyperion and Morpheus lines, and also Celestron has (had?) their Ultima Duo line.

    Clear skies!
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    Default Re: Wide field eyepieces? Hello all. New to forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeWest View Post
    If you are bound and determined to have 2" EP's for higher magnification, Baader Planetarium has their Hyperion and Morpheus lines, and also Celestron has (had?) their Ultima Duo line.

    Clear skies!
    Not really 2" EPs. They are 1.25" EPs that also have a 2" barrel so will fit in a 2" focuser. They are still limited by the 1.25" barrel. Nor will they perform well in the f/6 Newt. They work pretty well in a f/10 SCT, a Mak, or a long refractor.
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