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  1. #11
    MarkM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnycharlie View Post
    If I bough the 6.7m UWA, I would have the option of adding a barlow and doubling the magnification. How much difference does a barlow make to the quality of the image? Would it negate spending a lot of money on a decent ep? Or would I be better off with the 4.7mm UWA? (I'd buy both if I had the money!!)
    This is a hot topic discussed in pieces within other threads and I am afraid there are only subjective answers. My opinion is that the information you get from users who have direct experience with reflectors (especially if it is the same aperture as your XT8i) will be of the highest value and likely be the closest match to what you can expect.

    My Barlow experience is solely based on use in reflectors--one 8" f/5.9 instrument (Orion XT8i) and a f/4.5 15" instrument (Obsession Classic). And I have only owned one Barlow: a Celestron Ultima 2x, which is supposed to be a decent lens.

    Many careful observations [in a head to head vs a lens giving the same or similar magnification as a Barlow + lens] have led me to the conclusion that this Barlow does not simply double the magnification of my eyepiece collection without any downside. The negatives I have noticed are inability to detect small faint objects [vs the unBarlowed lens; for example some of the moons of Saturn] and a slightly fuzzy image that never completely comes to focus [again vs an unBarlowed lens, particularly when looking at bright planets such as Jupiter and Saturn or when splitting tight double stars]. I think I need to collect a few more data points and finally put these observations together into a report/review.

    I have always wondered if I would feel this way about using a Barlow had I ponied up the bucks for a Televue Barlow--I own several TV eyepieces and excellent light transmission clear images are one of their hallmarks. At least one of our members (TCA) has recently ordered one and his experiences with it will be greatly appreciated.

    So...........my opinion would be that if you are to get a Barlow perhaps consider its use at lower magnification and not for planetary observation where crystal clear images (which is what you WILL get with your XT8i if properly collimated and cooled) are intimately tied to the pleasure of seeing these objects. Razor sharp images have never been that important to me when I view galaxies like M104 and the Great Orion Nebula (and for these you will generally want lower magnification than what you use on planets anyway).

    As far as a final EP recommendation for viewing planets with your XT8i? If I had it to do all over again, I would get a Meade 4.7mm UWA--great eyepiece that wont break the bank and you will be very glad for the wide field (82 degrees AFOV) at the 255x magnification it delivers as you wont need to nudge the scope as often vs a Hyperion, Stratus or Meade SWA (all of which are 68 degree AFOV). Only after viewing at the 250ish magnification will you know if your sky can handle more (like 340x)--if it can, a Nagler, Hyperion or Stratus 3.5mm might be in the cards for you.
    Last edited by MarkM; 03-16-2010 at 01:47 PM.
    Location: 30° 19' N; 97° 54' W; elev 248 meters; yellow/green zone; NELM 5.7
    Instruments: Obsession 15" Dob; Orion XT8i; 2" refractor (Galileoscope); Televue EP arsenal; Bushnell 7X50 binos
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  3. #12
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    That was a fabulous reply- thankyou! It looks like I will be contacting my cousin in America when I have a bit of spare cash!
    Where is the cheapest place to buy the Meade uwa 4.7mm? I am not familiar with American astro shops. If possible, somewhere that takes Paypal as I can then pay for it easily.

    I love this forum!!

  4. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnycharlie View Post
    Where is the cheapest place to buy the Meade uwa 4.7mm? I am not familiar with American astro shops. If possible, somewhere that takes Paypal as I can then pay for it easily.
    You may wish to start here: Telescopes Sale and Telescope Accessories at Telescopes.com

    I am not sure of other sources, RoverRich may know when he logs on later--he seems to know quite a bit about good suppliers of Meade stuff.
    Location: 30° 19' N; 97° 54' W; elev 248 meters; yellow/green zone; NELM 5.7
    Instruments: Obsession 15" Dob; Orion XT8i; 2" refractor (Galileoscope); Televue EP arsenal; Bushnell 7X50 binos
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnycharlie View Post
    Where is the cheapest place to buy the Meade uwa 4.7mm? I am not familiar with American astro shops. If possible, somewhere that takes Paypal as I can then pay for it easily.

    I love this forum!!
    I buy from this Agena AstroProducts - Telescopes, Eyepieces, Binoculars and Accessories for the Astronomy Enthusiast with FREE US Shipping store. They have great prices and great service. They carry all the meade eps. Plus they ship across the pond.
    name: Derek

    Various
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    and such.

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  8. #15
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    These guys are pretty good to deal with ...Hands On Optics :: Telescopes, Accessories, CCD and Digital Cameras and they take paypal ....Ask for Joe , Gary or Sherri ....Great customer service and fast friendly shipping ...Or as Derek suggested , Agna astro ..I haven't dealt with Agna though , i just use hands on optics as they are just up the road from me ...
    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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  10. #16
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    I've dealt with Agena Astroproducts a couple times. Decent prices, great communications. They take Paypal. Both times my order shipped the same day.
    Len
    Astro Tech 150mm mak f/12 -
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    8 inch reflector f/4.9 - VRC8 (RC Mod for Mallincam)
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