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  1. #1
    Don Trinko's Avatar
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    Default Do I get what I pay for for Eye Pieces?



    Will I get better optical performance by spending more money on an EP?
    I can see that I can spend anywhere fron $19 to $700+ for an EP. I'm pretty sure that the $700 one is better than the $19 one. At what dollar value will I see little or no improvement in optics?
    I am looking for a 4 or 5mm EP with long eye relief. I will use it primarily for planets with an Astro-Tech 66mm ED. ( 80 to 100X) I have typical small town light polution. Thanks; Don T.

  2. #2
    panhard's Avatar
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    Hyperion eyepieces will give you good bang for the buck. IMHO

  3. #3
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    this article will help you to chose an eypiece

    The Cost of a Good Eyepiece Redux - Article

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    BobDob (06-15-2009)

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhobetorXVII View Post
    this article will help you to chose an eypiece

    The Cost of a Good Eyepiece Redux - Article
    Just to prove that a person should never read just one review and move on... the reviewer here states that the Hyperion Modular series are ok for long focal lengths and huff & puff in low ratios.
    That is the complete OPPOSITE opinion of every other review I've googled to date. It's always buyer beware I guess. I tend to read ALOT of reviews of equipment prior to purchace just to get a feel for the overall sway.

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  6. #5
    Don Trinko's Avatar
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    OK; I have a 40mm, 25mm, and a 9.7mm Mead 4000 series EP's and A Zuhmell 8mm to 24mm zoom EP. I also have several 25 to 12 mm EP's that have been adapted from Microscopes. Since I am new to astronomy I have no comparison. Are these "decent" EP's?
    I have 2 scopes, a 66mm Astro-Tech (400mm fl) and a Mead DS2130. (fl=1200 I think) Viewing in my back yard is not all that good but I do occasionaly go to a better location. ( still light poluted)
    I'm looking for a 4 or 5mm for the Astro-Tech to look at planets and the moon. I will spend $100 or more for an EP IF I am convinced that it is MUCH better than a $70 EP. Thanks; Don T.

  7. #6
    Vinnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GriffinBF View Post
    Just to prove that a person should never read just one review and move on... the reviewer here states that the Hyperion Modular series are ok for long focal lengths and huff & puff in low ratios.
    That is the complete OPPOSITE opinion of every other review I've googled to date. It's always buyer beware I guess. I tend to read ALOT of reviews of equipment prior to purchace just to get a feel for the overall sway.
    Yes I disagree with Rod Mollise in that article (and not many guys ever question the wisdom of "Uncle Rod", but I'm game). The bit about the hyperions not performing at fast f ratios just doesn't hold. True the Hyperions are a poor mans wide field long ER EP and they do lose a little edge definiton but still they are incredible value for dollar. Also Rods comments about the Stratus being a copy of the Vixen LVW is just plain ridiculous. The Vixen LVWs use Lanthanum Glass. The Stratus don't. Full stop.

    Still back to the question. Yes you do get what you pay for, but do you need top end Tele Vue EP's? Probably not. Nice if you can afford them but not essential.

    Just a quick aside here on the focal length a scope. When we talk about EP compatibility its not the focal length that counts its the f ratio. As the f ratio gets lower the light is bent more to reach a focal point. The result is any aberrations present become more apparent, or exaggerated. Commonly we talk about ratios less than f/5 as becoming a problem with basic EP's.

    Why buy more expensive EPs than common Plossls and other cheaper designs? Well the two main features desired are ER (Eye Relief), and wider Field of View.

    ER is a biggie. Most common EPs at say 5mm have an ER of 2mm to 3mm. That is not comfortable to use, and downright impossible if you wear glasses. Personally I prefer at least 15mm of ER with 20mm preferred.

    Just a tip re ER if you want to use high magnifications like a 5mm EP and don't want to spend a lot, use a barlow with a longer EP. The barlow will maintain the ER of the EP that you are using. So say you barlow a 10mm plossl with 6mm ER, you get the same magnification as a 5mm but don't lose half or more of your ER.

    Wider fields of view. Heres what you really start to pay for. How wide do you want? Well again personally 65° to 70° AFOV is more than adequate for all applications. Its nice to go wider, but the prices start to lose proportion as you increase from this point.

    What to look for in an EP. (relative to say 65° to 70° AFOV and 15mm to 20mm ER). Well overall sharpness of view, obviously, but also full definition edge to edge, complete edge blackening, and the one that is most often overlooked is the absence of the "Kidney Bean" effect.

    Kidney Beaning is the effect of seeing a dark bean shaped shadow develop at the centre of the view as you move your sight to the edge. If a wide EP displays this you can only get a pristine view by constantly looking dead centre into the EP.

    My Opinions? If you want to step up in EPs to gain extra FOV and especially ER then the best value for dollar for the budget conscious buyer is the Baader Hyperion range. Not perfect, but excellent value. Next step up Vixen LVW or Pentax XW. Not cheap, but still well priced and both having all the desired features. Recently I had a look through a couple of William Optics UWAN's. These seemed nice but in fairness I didn't have enough time for a serious appraisal.

    Oh and in case you are wondering, I mainly use Vixen LVWs, also I have some Baader Hyperions

  8. #7
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    I have to agree with Vinnie about the Hyperions. I just love mine.

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by panhard View Post
    I have to agree with Vinnie about the Hyperions. I just love mine.
    And since you are running an f/4.7 scope, Herb, that tends to dispel the concept that the Hyps don't stack up at faster focal ratios.

  10. #9
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    Yes they are a little funny right at the edge but I can put up with that for the going rate for them. The views at the edge don't bother me much at all. I know some people want an ep to perform the same from edge to edge. The 8 & 13 mm are my most used also. Overall I rate them very highly for the amount of money spent6.
    Last edited by panhard; 06-15-2009 at 10:50 PM.

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Trinko View Post
    OK; I have a 40mm, 25mm, and a 9.7mm Mead 4000 series EP's and A Zuhmell 8mm to 24mm zoom EP. I also have several 25 to 12 mm EP's that have been adapted from Microscopes. Since I am new to astronomy I have no comparison. Are these "decent" EP's?
    I have 2 scopes, a 66mm Astro-Tech (400mm fl) and a Mead DS2130. (fl=1200 I think) Viewing in my back yard is not all that good but I do occasionaly go to a better location. ( still light poluted)
    I'm looking for a 4 or 5mm for the Astro-Tech to look at planets and the moon. I will spend $100 or more for an EP IF I am convinced that it is MUCH better than a $70 EP. Thanks; Don T.
    Hi don ... If i am not mistaken you could use a 2x barlow with the series 4000 ... 9.7 meade and have a 4.85mm E.P. ...As far as eye relief goes the smaller the focal length the shorter the eye relief ...I think ..
    16in Night sky
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    F4.5 , 90mm refractor 500mm FL , 7in
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    classic Big-mac , Meade eye pieces with a few odd balls thrown in ...
    If you cant stand behind the american soldier ,
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    Please stand in front of one ...

 

 
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