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Skywatcher bog standard 10mm EP


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Evening folks :0)

Anna here yet again on Dens log in.

After a lot of helpful advice, I have mastered the art of actually using my, Dens, scope and am loving it.

The only thing that is frustrating me is that I have quickly realised that the 10mm EP is pretty pants. The 25mm is good and I can quickly focus it now but I am becoming more and more annoyed with trying to focus the 10mm one.

So, am going to upgrade to perhaps a 11 or more likely, a 9mm one of better quality. Having looked around, I've seen bucketloads of differing price and varied reviews.

Does anyone have any particular preference for one or another? Budget I reckon is about £50.

Cheers again folks, any help is appreciated. Anna xx

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The Vixen NPL range is great and only costs about £30 each. For observing planets......most people tend to use an 8-9mm EP.

I agree with you (and many others) the SW 10mm is a bit rubbish but the 25mm is pretty ok.

Vixen NPL: i use them on my 70mm,130mm and 200mm scopes and they work fine across all.

http://www.firstlightoptics.com/vixen-eyepieces/vixen-npl-eyepieces.html

There are other well liked brands at the same price but i cant comment on them as i have never used them. BST's come to mind. I personally find that the NPL's offer very sharp views across the whole FOV and are very well contrasting (objects against dark skies)

Edited by LukeSkywatcher
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These are the good affordable brands: Xcel LX, BST Explorer, TMB clone. I have a 9mm m TMB clone, branded TS Planetary HR, which blew me away with its quality when I bought it - it was my first EP upgrade.

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I think the SW 10mm EP isn't as bad as many people think. Granted there are better EPs but it does the job. Seems to me many beginners to astronomy are more interested in going for the highest magnification they can get with their setups rather than the most useful for the viewing conditions. I know I was like that before I got some good advice on SGL. Some nights you just can't use 10mm, no matter which brand or model EP you have.

Just my 2p on the subject.

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Excellent advice already chaps, thank you.

I thought initially I was just being a muppet but spending quite a while trying to focus the Skywatcher 10mm I soon realised that it wasn't user error ;0)

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I think the SW 10mm EP isn't as bad as many people think. Granted there are better EPs but it does the job. Seems to me many beginners to astronomy are more interested in going for the highest magnification they can get with their setups rather than the most useful for the viewing conditions. I know I was like that before I got some good advice on SGL. Some nights you just can't use 10mm, no matter which brand or model EP you have.

Just my 2p on the subject.

Hi there,

thanks for that.

That may possibly be true but even though I am new to astronomy, I have tried for hours on most night that it has been clear but I just can't seem to get to grips with focusing it so for the sake of my patience, I thought I'd try something else.

Appreciate the input though, Anna

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I think the SW 10mm EP isn't as bad as many people think. Granted there are better EPs but it does the job. Seems to me many beginners to astronomy are more interested in going for the highest magnification they can get with their setups rather than the most useful for the viewing conditions. I know I was like that before I got some good advice on SGL. Some nights you just can't use 10mm, no matter which brand or model EP you have.

Just my 2p on the subject.

Honestly i have never experienced a night when a 10mm EP was un-usable. Sure there are night when anything below 10mm will suffer..........but 10mm in my experience is workable on any given night.

I do agree though that as beginners, we all want(ed) the highest magnification. Thats the general idea of astronomy (to observe far away objects up close).

As we grow and learn in the hobby, we come to the conclusion that blasting everything we have at objects is not the way to go.

M42 per example looks great in a 20-25mm EP but looks pants in 8mm.

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I recently revisited the standard 10mm SW EP when one came with my ST80 guide scope, having flogged the original that came with my 200p, long since. It wasn't that bad and certainly not as bad as I remember, but then in my 200p, it's only giving 100x magnification. In a Skymax 127, it's giving 150x with a much smaller aperture to work with.

Given that I find plenty of nights borderline with an 8mm (125x) I'm not surprised if the 10mm views in the Skymax are less than, err, stellar.

It is worth upgrading although do note that focusing will still be a case of patience as that's more a function of the scope's focuser, mount stability and fluctuations in seeing.

Personally, I'd suggest uprgading with an EP or two to plug the gaps in the range between your existing EPs. That will allow a greater degree of finesse when viewing objects and then replace the standard EPs a bit further down the line. My 12 & 18mm EPs are my most used as they 'frame' objects nicely with the two extremes of my collection only used to either find things, or on really clear nights.

Russell

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I got an Orion Sirius 10mm and although they aren't a great EP I was told it would be an improvement, it wasn't as good. I don't think it's that drastic but I bought a BST Explorer 8mm rather than replace the 10mm and that is a brilliant EP.

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I think the SW 10mm EP isn't as bad as many people think. Granted there are better EPs but it does the job. Seems to me many beginners to astronomy are more interested in going for the highest magnification they can get with their setups rather than the most useful for the viewing conditions. I know I was like that before I got some good advice on SGL. Some nights you just can't use 10mm, no matter which brand or model EP you have.

Just my 2p on the subject.

My experience with the SW 10mm EP has been similar to this but with the Skymax 127 like yours. I don't have a better 10mm EP to compare it to but I seldom have a problem focusing it most times I use it, which isn't that often I'll admit as I tend to favour my Kson 16.8mm ortho both on it's own and also with a 2x Barlow. But the view it gives me fits nicely in between the 89x and the 178x I get with the Kson. The longer focal lengths of the Maksutov's usually make them more forgiving of the budget EPs.

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I also think the SW super 10mm gets a bit of stick most of the time. It's not as bad as some people say but the eye relief is a bit tight so it's not the most comfortable lens to use and in a Skymax 127 is giving 150x mag which is a lot for a little scope most nights. I seldom use much less than a 15mm plossl with the Skymax at club nights.

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Hi Anna

I know what you mean, i've got one, i used it once and put it back in the little box it came in, i use Super Plossel's, they rang from £42 for the 6.4mm though to £62 for the 40mm, there good for there money and give good eye relief.

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Honestly i have never experienced a night when a 10mm EP was un-usable. Sure there are night when anything below 10mm will suffer..........but 10mm in my experience is workable on any given night.

You must have better viewing conditions than I do Paul :hello2:

There have been more than a few nights over the last few years when I've been using my plossls and as I swapped EPs to increase mag I would end up stopping at 12mm. The views through both my SW 10mm and GSO 9mm were too mushy, and the Meade 6.4mm didn't come out of the box.

Poor viewing conditions aren't always limited to a single night either. I've found they can carry on for a few days. But, like you say, there are other targets such as M42, M45, M31 etc... which don't need higher mag to appreciate their beauty :)

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Hi again people,

I have just bought a Vixen Lanthanum 10mm and a 15mm eyepiece for the grand sum of £80 after some advice from a friend.

They are longer and apparently better for those with specs so we will see.

I realise it is all a bit subjective but after selling loads of my climbing and mountaineering kit I have a wee kitty in my paypal account for trial and error so I'd dip into it.

Also, Denni is back and I think he has accepted that the scope is now mine. I've told him he can buy another kayak instead out of my paypal money :0)

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You must have better viewing conditions than I do Paul :).......

Not necessarily. Low cost eyepieces do vary in quality widely - one of the reasons that they cost so little is that there is little or no quality checking involved in their manufacture.

If you got a half dozen of any <£50 eyepiece type it would not surprise me at all to see a noticeable variation in optical performance between individual samples.

One of the reasons that Tele Vue eyepieces cost what they do is that they are subject to a 100% quality check which includes optical performance down to an F/4 scope.

Edited by John
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