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Everything posted by mark81

  1. A couple of great sessions there with a nice variety of objects. Picking out the big Messier's in Auriga is great at this time of year.. Keep enjoying those 10x50s..
  2. Thanks for the wonderful report. Very enjoyable read ... I've looked at a pair of those Pentax 20x60s a number of times and look forward to hearing more about them and how they compare to the others... The only problem is, the pair of 11x70s I have been using were borrowed and had to go back... So reports like this get me thinking... Mark
  3. Great sketches Mike. I always enjoy the subtle detail you manage to pick out. I often find that when I sketch, I'm too eager to see the finished product and often end up rushing a little, but of course the more time at the EP the more detail can be seen.. That's where experience comes into play I guess.. Mark
  4. Very nice sketches as always..
  5. mark81


    That's an interesting idea with a great outcome...
  6. Great start. It's always nice to get the first session done so you an get a feel for the bins. I had the x16 versions out last night... Fantastic around Cassiopeia.. Glad your enjoying them... Mark
  7. Thanks Steve... The darker nights are finally on their way.. Mark
  8. Have you had a look at the Helios Stella ii. They come in x20 and x16, I've always preferred the x16 for a slightly wider FOV - but as others have said, most larger bins don't have a central focus wheel..... So no good for wildlife.... Helios of course have the Apollo's and the Lightquests - but the price does jump up on these and also the weight.. Mark
  9. @cloudsweeper I'll look forward to hearing about your new EP Doug.. I suppose we can be forgiven as the light nights are so long.. but they are drawing in now, so watch this space ! Mark
  10. Hi All, It seems like such a long time since I've been here and under the stars...all to do with a combination of the current situation and long working hours and tiredness etc.. With a break in the clouds at about midnight last night i couldn't help but remove the thick layer of dust off the st80 and drop it outside the back door looking east. With the 15mm bst I picked out Andromeda really easily and felt so good to be back. The smell of the summer air, the sound of hedgehogs in the boarders, the warm breeze - perfect. I avoided looking for anything challenging and just swept arou
  11. I haven't used those particular binoculars before but I have enjoyed the wider field that the 42mm gives... But when using 42's I do find that I miss that little extra light gathering power the 50s offer... But if it's just for quick views of stars and wide field sweeping they should be fine.. But saying that, You might find that the 7x50s would reduce the wobble enough to provide a more stable image.. Mark
  12. Plenty of mounts out there that can handle the big binoculars, the higher end fotomates - like the vt680 -222 would work well with either the 80s or the 100s - have a look on FLO.... (Lots of others of course) If you are going to be travelling with these I would strongly recommend having a look at a pair of 100mm in the flesh. Photos of them really don't show their true size. The difference from 70mm to 80mm is noticeable of course, but from 80 to 100 really is quite a jump. I have found 80mm to be the max that I would use for straight through observing. 100mm and you really want 45
  13. If there's a good deal on them and your happy with it, I can't see that you'd be disappointed with the Skymasters. ... If your not fully set on a pair of bins then... Maybe @Stu has the answer? Mark
  14. The optics, build quality and light transmission are better on the Helios - I've used a pair of the 16x80s and had amazing views of clusters and wide star fields... And the Helios are full 80mm aperture - I have a feeling the Skymasters may have been stopped down a bit - but I may be wrong.. I can't compare them properly as I've only used the 70mm Skymasters which for the price you really can't go wrong ... If I had to chose and had the cash, I would go for the Helios everyday of the week... Mark
  15. The photo is just a sketch ... Although I only included the brighter stars as the field of view was packed with them...
  16. I have the Olympus 10x50 and for the money they work very well for astro use - you may have to wait a few months for darker skies to get the best out of them - unless you stay up till the early hours - I have actually had some of my best astro moments with these binoculars.. Orion neb in particular was always outstanding.... Mark
  17. Both are nice scopes, I do like the ST120 mainly because it's a refractor and gives those sharper pinpoint stars, BUT I agree with what's said about the AZ3, it is nowhere near strong enough to hold the 120. If you keep the bolts nice and tight and stay under 60 degrees, you maybe OK for a while, but once you start aiming higher in the sky the mount will have other ideas....
  18. Thanks Steve, great work Let's hope for clear sky's on the 19th.... Mark
  19. Just thinking. Is there such a thing as Too Much Eye Relief for someone who doesn't wear glasses? Thanks Mark
  20. That's a very successful binocular session. Some really nice Messier's also, I must have another go at m101 - it's always one I mean to have a look at but never do... Mark
  21. Sounds great.. I was looking at some monopods a few days ago and either the height or the weight capacity fell short for what I'd want it for... I'll take a look at the one you mentioned... Mark
  22. Great pictures Stu, that must be one good phone camera to pick up that little star - it must be quite satisfying to duplicate the image from SkySafari.... Mark
  23. Thanks Mike, Thats an interesting effect...and so is being able to see the darker surface of the planet against the lighter sky.... Mark
  24. Very nice sketch Mike... Would you say the illuminated portion stretches further round than say it would on a new moon? Mark
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