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EP recommendations for ED80


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Will be looking in the near future for a couple of EP's for the ED80. My main interest is dso's and I already have the standard 28mm LES that comes with the scope.

Can you guys suggest a medium budget ep that would suit my needs. I understand that if I get a 2" 2x barlow that will give me a 14mm equivalent ep.

I was thinking maybe a barlow and something in the 36mm range. That would give me a range of 36,28,18,14mm. or should I aim for slightly higher magnification.

Your thoughts ladies and gentlemen please.

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The Meade 34mm SWA is a nice eyepiece and you could get one second hand and without spending a fortune. The ExSC 34mm SWA for me is the same glass in a different pair of trousers, but you will only be able to buy that new.

The SW Aero range are light and good in a refractor, they do a 35mm, which I would suggest you do not go beyond due to exit pupil size. This eyepiece is not as good as the first two but is cheaper to buy. I haven't seen any S/H though.

The very best is the 35mm Panoptic but that will cost you at least 200 S/H but will hold it's value.

The Meade 32mm S Plossl is nice and they are selling them off so you could get one cheapish, but it is only a 60 degree FOV.

There are many other less expensive eyepieces on the market but I do not have any knowledge of these.

Hope this is of some use.

Alan.

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On the barlow front, I have tried three. Top draw is the Televue Powermate, these are about as good as it gets and have a price tag to match. But I see you are no stranger to quality gear.

The SW ED barlow is a cheaper option and I found it very good indeed but only used it for a short while some years back. The other one I have used a fair bit was the Meade Series 5000 2inch Extender, very good and close to the Televue, not made now but maybe a S/H option. I am of the understanding that the Bresser 2 inch Barlow is the same thing as the old Meade. This will no doubt look a bit different and without the bomb proof box that the 5000 series all came with.

I would not go cheap on a barlow, but that's just me.

Alan,

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The 35mm Skywatcher Aero would be a great choice in an ED80. Although the mag will be very low, it would show a huge 4° swaythe of sky. Its really light for a 2" ep & stars should be sharp right across the fov at f7.5 with this eyepiece.

I'm not sure how well it will work with a barlow though. When used with the barlow, the eye relief at 17.5mm, might be extended out to an uncomfortable level?

A couple of excellent 2" barlows that won't break the bank are the Antares 1.6x and the GSO 2x. I have both of these and would recommend either. There is an Antares in the classifieds at the minute iirc.

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The 35mm Skywatcher Aero would be a great choice in an ED80. Although the mag will be very low, it would show a huge 4° swaythe of sky. Its really light for a 2" ep & stars should be sharp right across the fov at f7.5 with this eyepiece.

I'm not sure how well it will work with a barlow though. When used with the barlow, the eye relief at 17.5mm, might be extended out to an uncomfortable level?

A couple of excellent 2" barlows that won't break the bank are the Antares 1.6x and the GSO 2x. I have both of these and would recommend either. There is an Antares in the classifieds at the minute iirc.

That's a good point about eye relief being added to with a barlow. But, if you wear glasses, your eyes will be at a comfortable position even with a barlow (tried barlowing a 26mm Plossl, which has ~20.8mm eye relief without the barlow, and it was fine). If you don't wear glasses though, you will probably have to move your head back quite a bit!

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I second the 35mm Aero ED for widefield.

I would not recommend a 2" barlow, because it'd be cheaper to get a 1.25" eyepiece at that magnification. However, a 1.25" barlow can potentially double your eyepiece collection at higher power and a Meade 2x series 5000 Telextender / Bresser SA barlow will be a good choice.

I'd get a 35 Aero ED and a 17mm Hyperion. The 17 Hyperion can be configured as a 13, 11, and 9mm using various combinations of fine tuning ring. Since your main interests is DSO, there is no need to get dedicated high power eyepieces for planets. Instead you can get a 1.25" Bresser SA barlow when you need higher magnification.

If you are lazy like me, I'd get a Aero ED 35 for wide field and then a Hyperion Zoom. The zoom trades a bit of image quality and AFOV for convenience. IMHO, the zoom would be just as good as fixed eyepiece in most nights. You can add a hyperion zoom barlow when you want to use your scope for planets.

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The 2" 25mm EP supplied as standard with the ED80 Pro kit is fabulous on the moon through the ED80 - the best wide views I have seen of the moon. I have been mightily impressed by the quality of the ED80 Pro kit for what it costs. I don't know how they do it for the money.

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