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Mak the Night

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About Mak the Night

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  1. Yes, like I stated way earlier, conditions, aperture and exit pupil all contribute to whether a particular filter works or not. I find broadband filters can often be more effective on smaller apertures. I can effectively use narrowband filters on an f/6, 150mm Newtonian, yet this isn't always the case on an f/6.9, 130mm Newtonian. I've had similar results to you with an 80mm f'5 refractor. Conditions dictate filter usefulness in my experience.
  2. I'm not the one arguing with an opinion. As I stated: YMMV. I don't care if someone disagrees with my opinion. That's what forums are for. I think you have to look who's causing the enmity here. There is trolling on this forum. But it isn't by me. I don't reply to (or feed) trolls.
  3. I have an original Lumicon UHC, I'm not really sure what's happened with Lumicon now. I've heard they aren't what they were. Not long ago I directly compared a Lumicon UHC, an Orion UltraBlock, an Astronomik UHC-E, an Orion SkyGlow and a Baader UHC-S on The Orion Nebula. The telescope was a 102mm SkyMax (Maksutov) and I used a variety of magnifications and eyepieces and mainly kept the exit pupil above 3mm. Eyepieces included a 40mm Plossl and 23mm and 25mm eyepieces equipped with 0.5x reducers effectively doubling their focal lengths. The results were that the Orion SkyGlow and the Baader UHC-S showed the most detail with the SkyGlow being slightly more contrasted. The Lumicon probably had the best contrast but there was a slight but noticeable lack of detail compared to the broadband filters. The Astronomik UHC-E was somewhat in the middle, which I more or less expected. I can't speak for the trolls, and I'm not particularly interested in their opinion anyway, but these are the results I got with a four inch Mak. Things do change when you use refractors of around four inches though and they perform well with narrowband filters. In my experience reflecting scopes need at least a six inch aperture to use most narrowband filters at their maximum efficacy. Of course, YMMV.
  4. My sky is like yours (I live in a village on the edge of the greenbelt) and the 30mm Vixen gives me a dark enough background, as does a 25mm NPL and a 19mm TeleVue Panoptic.
  5. You're welcome. If your scope has a 650mm focal length it will be f/5. The 30mm Vixen is a superb Plossl.
  6. The Sky-Watcher 32mm Plossl is pretty good, it's the same as the Celestron and Orion among others and actually manufactured by Barsta. I wouldn't recommend it for scopes faster than f/6 though as you may get astigmatism (flock of seagulls effect lol). The GSO/Revelation performs better in faster scopes. https://www.365astronomy.com/32mm-GSO-Plossl-Eyepiece.html https://www.telescopehouse.com/eyepieces/revelation-eyepieces/revelation-32-0mm-plossl-eyepiece-1-25.html The 30mm Vixen NPL is superb as well and is one of my main low power EP's when using f/5 short tube refractors in 1.25" mode. https://www.telescopehouse.com/eyepieces/vixen-eyepieces/vixen-plossls/vixen-npl-30-0mm-4-element-plossl-eyepiece-1-25.html FLO seem to be cheaper at the moment! https://www.firstlightoptics.com/vixen-eyepieces/vixen-npl-eyepieces.html
  7. I'm fairly sure Lumicon developed the first UHC (Ultra High Contrast) 'narrowband' filters. Narrowband filters normally transmit between 484 and 506 nanometres. In my experience narrowband filters can be of limited use on many emission nebulae, where a broadband filter can reveal more detail. This is also related to aperture and exit pupil. I found that a Lumicon UHC was of limited use on a reflecting telescope under 15 centimetres when used to view emission nebulae like M42 (Orion Nebula), M8 (Lagoon Nebula) and M20 (Trifid Nebula), the latter technically being a combination of emission and reflection nebulae. But a 'broadband filter' often referred to as an LPR (Light Pollution Reduction) filter which also passes H-alpha, H-beta, and O III can give better and more detailed results. Conditions will always dictate whether a filter has any efficacy or not anyway. Furthermore, manufacturers and distributors use various terms to describe their respective products, many which can almost be meaningless. The Orion SkyGlow and Baader UHC-S are technically broadband filters. The Astronomik UHC-E is considered a wide narrowband. As opposed to the narrowband Orion UltraBlock. The Lumicon OIII is considered a narrowband, yet the Explore Scientific OIII filters are aimed at smaller apertures and considered 'wide' narrowband by some. Much of it comes down to marketing. Much of it comes down to aperture size and exit pupil. YMMV. Let the trolling commence ...
  8. Anything was better than the dead ducks that were the SWAN's lol.
  9. The Sky-Watcher MA eyepieces are basically inexpensive reversed Kellners with plastic housings. The Barsta (BST) eyepieces are a totally different kettle of fish. I only have the 3.2mm & 25mm but they are very sharp, bright and contrasted on f/5 refractors and an f/6 Newtonian. The 25mm Barsta and 3.2mm has five lenses in three groups including ED glass. I have a feeling the configuration is similar to many TMB types. These EP's are marketed under a variety of names. Maybe it's the ED glass (Extra Low Dispersion) or the design, but these eyepieces hold their own against much more expensive ones IMO.
  10. I like KStars, it can be quirky, but free astronomy stuff can't be bad lol. I had my 102mm Mak/AZ5 out this evening as the sun was out and I tried to catch a setting Venus and Mercury. I had all my filters and everything ready. At about 18:20 GMT I glanced Venus first with the naked eye, then in the RACI. By the time my eye got to the actual eyepiece clouds obscured everything. I didn't see it again!
  11. What gets me is the 'TS Optics' 2.5x GSO Barlow is sold by Telescope House as a 'Revelation Astro' for half the price of the TS Optics, and then some. I wish I'd have known!
  12. I don't know if the two companies are connected. They're both German. AFAIK 'Omegon' is the house name for Astroshop.eu. Astroshop/Omegon often sell TS products. TS Optics themselves market a lot of Barsta (BST) and GSO products under their own name. Above is the modified case of a 'Celestron' AstroMaster Accessory Kit I bought a few years ago. Astroshop sell the same kit as the Omegon AstroMaster. The 'Omegon' Barlow you can see on the left in the case is actually Barsta and FLO now sell it for quite a bit less than I paid for the Omegon version as a BST Barlow. The larger Barlow on the right was bought from TS Optics three or four years ago, it has TS Optics written on the side hidden from view. It's actually a GSO.
  13. I wonder if these Omegon AC 80/400 OTA's are Synta. Does anyone have any info on these? They can be bought off Amazon as well as directly from Astroshop. https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/omegon-telescope-ac-80-400-ota/p,47423 They look more or less identical to the ST80 variants distributed by Sky-Watcher and Orion.
  14. Celestron & Sky-Watcher are both owned by Synta.
  15. @N3ptune Hey Neb, I forgot to ask, do you use KStars on Mint? It’s in the Ubuntu repo. There’s even a stripped down Android version. I believe it can be compiled for Windows. It seems mainly used on Linux. The ‘droid version is glitchy but it’s OK for freeware. The repo version seems fine although it might not be the latest release. It’s developed by KDE and I’m pretty sure runs on anything Debian/Ubuntu based. It's good for planning sessions but can also control a GOTO apparently. https://edu.kde.org/kstars/ Blurb ~ KStars is free, open source, cross-platform Astronomy Software. It provides an accurate graphical simulation of the night sky, from any location on Earth, at any date and time. The display includes up to 100 million stars, 13,000 deep-sky objects,all 8 planets, the Sun and Moon, and thousands of comets, asteroids, supernovae, and satellites. For students and teachers, it supports adjustable simulation speeds in order to view phenomena that happen over long timescales, the KStars Astrocalculator to predict conjunctions, and many common astronomical calculations. For the amateur astronomer, it provides an observation planner, a sky calendar tool, and an FOV editor to calculate field of view of equipment and display them. Find out interesting objects in the "What's up Tonight" tool, plot altitude vs. time graphs for any object, print high-quality sky charts, and gain access to lots of information and resources to help you explore the universe! Included with KStars is Ekos astrophotography suite, a complete astrophotography solution that can control all INDI devices including numerous telescopes, CCDs, DSLRs, focusers, filters, and a lot more. Ekos supports highly accurate tracking using online and offline astrometry solver, autofocus and autoguiding capabilities, and capture of single or multiple images using the powerful built in sequence manager. ~ op cit The Android version doesn't run on Chrome OS (yet anyway). Mind you, on 'droid it's buggier than Stellarium lol. The desktop version is quite customisable but I haven’t explored it enough even though I must have been running it for four years. I went a bit mad and ordered the #82A Lumicon as well. The #82A and the #11 along with the six Baader colours, a single Baader polarising filter and an ND seem the most useful. The #82A shown above is TS Optics/GSO. Baader just don't have an equivalent to the #11 and #82A. These are invaluable for Saturn (#11) and the Moon and a twilight Jupiter (#82A) IMO. How are your own filter trials going? I doubt I’ll replace all my other TS Optics (GSO) filters with Lumicons though.
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