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alan potts

Pentax and Delos 3.5mm eyepieces

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Alan I had the 6mm, 9mm and 18mm Hutechs to try out. One interesting observing point was viewing the SN in M82 (2014j) - I could see some fainter stars with the 6mm Hutech than with my Ethos EPs - very marginal but an interesting point. I recall on one night (very frosty) I felt my eye sticking to the bare metal of the Hutech. I suppose if I ever bought an Ortho I would prefer one with a rubber eye cap.

However, if the quality, contrast etc of the Delos is as good as an Ortho then I would buy the Televue - OK its more money but I need to I need to enjoy the viewing experience and not feel uncomfortable.

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Mark,

I did a review where I was using an Ethos and a BGO and I gave up because of the difference in field. I feel the transmission is not far short of the BGO and Hutechs but I believe that field plays tricks on the eye as there is so much more infomation for the eye to take in where as on the ortho you are much more focused on the object. Even if you are using 6mm or both types, it sure doesn't look like it for the first few seconds of viewing. I have done this on Jupiter a fair amount and you would swear blind they were different magnifcations.

Alan 

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shame Alan you are not in UK,as then i could send you a 4mm ortho just to test it.It is a proper pin hole and contact lens eye relief.Still usable but not in winter when its cold as you could end up with that thing permanently attached to your eye ball :D 

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Well that is a very nice offer, the only thing being here, many a time I want to help people and just can't. I am even running out of eyepieces to test but I have some Meade 60 degree S Plossl's form the Series 5000 range that I can do, 5.5mm, 9mm, 14mm, 20mm, 26mm, 32mm and 40mm I don't think I will do all of them but a couple could help people, I used to have all but the 40mm, they are not bad eyepieces.

I think the 4mm ortho may be a bridge too far though, I have long lashes, the girls at school always wanted to put that black stuff on them, that I am not even going to try to spell. I sometimes find the 6mm BGO a bit difficult for long periods but think I could just manage the 5mm.

Alan

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apparently 14mm plossl from 5000 series was the crown jewel of the series.Very sharp with good correction.And yes,long eye lashes and tight ER orthos dont go well together. :D

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I have got to go to see Dani in Sofia at the end of the month as he had a couple of Televues I was selling and the buyer has let me and him down, I was thinking of doing the 14mm S Plossl against the 14mm Delos and maybe the 26mm against the Panoptic 24mm, I will see what he will lend me, he is a bit  red faced, he don't like to upset his best customer.

Alan

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that is going to be interesting to read what you think of the 5000 series plossls.14mm head to head will be interesting.There is no doubt that Delos or Pan will be great eye pieces,but how close or equal will be plossls to them is the big question.i am ditching 9mm ES in 100 degs to get one Delos as i am not using it that much and want narrower FOV on higher mags.Also there is a massive ortho head to head brewing up in the pipeline,but not sure when this going to happen as it seems i will be a bit busy in my work and will have to travel a bit.I have agreed with Anthony to do this and Anthony will be the one writing the review :D,but no exact time is set so far. contenders will be: BGO,Pentax Xo and Meade Research grades.

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I will try and borrow the 14mm as well as something else, I had the lions share of the set as my first eyepiecs so they are not new to me, it was only the 40mm that I didn't bother with. I remember the first target with these eyepieces, Mercury with the 14mm and the 12 inch, out the window of the apartment in town, I was still building the house at the time. I have never seen Mercury since, there is always a tree in the way, or treed out as the Great Man would have said.

Alan

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Conclusion.

I think whilst I was doing the observations for this report on what must be two of the very best 3.5mm eyepieces that are currently on the market, I have been wondering what to say at this point, not that I am usually lost for words. After 15 hours and 20 minutes I think both are outstanding eyepieces from two of the finest producers. They are both sharp, full of contrast with little or no scatter. I always wonder what Pentax could have done if they had set out to design an astronomical eyepiece as opposed to a range for a finder scope. My one criticism is I feel there could have been more in the range, I feel the jump of 10mm, 7mm, 5mm and then the one we have here is a little lacking, however this is just my opinion. TeleVue’s Delos on the other hand has more in the range and were designed with the night sky in mind and I believe some of the range are the best on the market. I own the Delos and it is a superb eyepiece, I borrowed the Pentax from my friend in Sofia, Dani, and I thank him for that.

There were plus points on each side all the way through the test and very little I could say that was negative. However I think if spent my money again I believe I would buy the Pentax XW, 3.5mm as it really comes so close to orthoscopic quality no matter what you point it at and it will also be on it’s game in the daylight as well.

I hope you enjoyed reading it.

Alan  

Alan,

You are very much welcome! I am astonished how much time and effort you put in this comparisons and how detailed they are! You are the eyepiece man!

Clear skies!

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Excellent report, as always, Alan.

Please don't put silly thoughts in my head, such as Pentax XW additions to the Ethoi, though please!! You may be a fair way away, but if you think my wife won't track you down, you'd be sorely mistaken!!!

Aaron

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Aaron,

I have never seen most of the Pentax range but I would not make the mistake of buying one if I were you it could end up costing a pile of money. The 30mm and 40mm I believe have been discontinued but the others are still available I think, I always fancied the 40mm for the LX but could never get one, I have the 41mm Panoptic but I am not over the Moon with it, in fact now I regret selling the 40mm Meade SWA at F10 it is a great piece of glass in every sense of the word.

Alan.

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First off, sorry for resurrecting an old thread.

What are peoples thoughts on these two eye pieces in this day and age, after a lot more people have has had a chance to get hold of the Delos. Is it still toss coin time between the Pentax and Televue or is there more to it?

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Wow - a 5 year old thread !

I have the 3.5mm Pentax XW but I have not owned or used a Delos 3.5mm. All the reports I've read indicate that the two are likely to be very, very similar in performance so I guess the choice would be over the ergonomics (which are also similar) and the price - bought new the XW 3.5mm costs around £60 less than the Delos.

I did compare my XW 3.5mm with an Ethos SX 3.7mm over a few months and concluded that, despite the massive field of view of the Ethos, the XW was a touch sharper so I eventually let the Ethos SX go to a new home.

I have the XW's in 10, 7, and 5mm focal lengths so it makes sense to have the 3.5mm as well for high power observing. I have the Delos in 17.3 and 14mm focal lengths and like those a lot. The shorter focal length Delos's have a different focal point than the longer two which might be a little inconvenient if mixed with my XW's which reach focus close to where the 17.3 and 14mm Delos do.

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Hi,

from 10mm to 3,5mm the Delos are parafocal. If you plan to get more of them (like me) this is very convenient. I think there is an adapter from TeleVue to get even the 17,3mm and 14mm parafocal to the rest of the gang. 

I ordered a special adapter for my 17,3mm Delos to get it parafocal to my 31mm Nagler. I consider both as widefield. Than a new focus point with 10mm to 3,5mm. 

I think you can not go wrong with the Delos or the XW, but it is the best to test yourself and decide, as eyepieces are a very "personal" part of the astro equipment. Ask four people and get five opinions... ?

cs,

Uli 

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Yes, for £50, Televue will send you an adapter to make the 14 & 17.2 parfocal with the rest of the range. However, the Ethos 21mm is parfocal with the 17&14 Delos (without the adapter). The 24mm Panoptic is parfocal with the adjusted Delos and the rest of the Delos range.

Paul

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I've not used the 3.5 Delos, but find it hard to imagine that it could ever beat the superlative 3.5mm XW, which is one of the best high power eyepieces ive ever owned. The XW undercut is far less savage than those of Televues, and if any of the other Televue eyepieces i've owned are anything to go by, the XW is likely to give a cooler/purer image. The massive eye lens and long eye relief of the XW makes it a very comfortable eyepiece to use. And they are significantly cheaper!

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Thanks for the input on this age old thread, much appreciated. 

Common sense tells me to go with the Pentax, however if i go for aesthetics, the Delos is much more fitting to my ES collection.

Joking aside, every review i have seen raves about the Pentax, especially the comfort. I will save myself £60 and go with the majority.

Thanks everyone!

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1 hour ago, Zayvin said:

I will save myself £60 and go with the majority.

But then we still won’t know what the Delos is like! ?.

John seems happy to have examples of both ranges in his collection. So there is unlikely to be much to choose between to two. Unless you spend time lovely stroking your eyepieces rather than looking through them, your choice should be a good one!

Paul

PS. I am a self confessed Delos fan and would probably spend the extra for the more engineered feel of the Televue...... I’d really like to observe with the Pentaxes one day so that I can make a more informed contribution.

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9 hours ago, Zayvin said:

Thanks for the input on this age old thread, much appreciated. 

Common sense tells me to go with the Pentax, however if i go for aesthetics, the Delos is much more fitting to my ES collection.

 

There is of course an easy solution to your mismatch problem! Sell everything and buy the entire set of XW's. :evil4:

1152958163_2019-03-2008_28_42.png.48e5585cb4798c045dbb71834bd6e440.png

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Posted (edited)
30 minutes ago, mikeDnight said:

There is of course an easy solution to your mismatch problem! Sell everything and buy the entire set of XW's. :evil4:

1152958163_2019-03-2008_28_42.png.48e5585cb4798c045dbb71834bd6e440.png

Where’s the 30mm and 40mm (and 14mm but that’s the dodgy one), Mike? ?

On topic, I have some Pentax XW (3.5, 5, 7, 10, 20 and 30) and Delos (4.5, 6, and 8 ) and they are both equivalent in view quality and comfort (ie excellent). I also have the 3 and 4 delite (don’t want to miss any gaps ?) and have been very impressed with these as well.

Edited by GavStar
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48 minutes ago, GavStar said:

Where’s the 30mm and 40mm (and 14mm but that’s the dodgy one), Mike? ?

Just testing to see if you're paying attention Gavin! :icon_biggrin:

I have had them all, including the 40mm, 30mm and the 14mm, but 40mm eyepieces have always seemed too sky bright for my liking. The 30mm was a real beaut' but, (and I hope you won't tell anybody else this), I felt my 31mm Nagler just had a fractional advantage at the edge of the field, so I let the 30mm go.I wish I hadn't, as the Pentax gave cooler, whiter star images which I prefer, but I'm a master at making blunders. The 14mm was my least favourite if I'm being honest, as it didn't really fit in with my power range requirements.  It also had the poorest edge correction, relatively speaking, of the range, though certainly not bad. My favourites were the 20mm, 10mm, 5mm and 3.5mm, purely because they gave me the range of magnifications I found most useful. The 7mm I called my M13 eyepiece as the globular seemed at its most impressive with that one. I think the Pentax XW series are the best set of eyepieces I've ever owned, so if owning a matching set is important, then I doubt anyone could really fault them. Except me!!  By contrast, Naglers for example look great as a matching set, but there can be a big difference in performance and comfort, with some being excellent while others are only fit for door stops. Perhaps that's a bit harsh! The thing that i dislike most about XW's is that they could have been designed to be much slimmer. In the information leaflet that comes with the eyepiece it says "New American Size,"  which niggles me as it implies they are unnecessarily large. At the moment I'm leaning more towards the Baader Morpheus with its 76° af, slim design and large Pentax style eye lens with no kidney bean effect. Doubt I'd want the set though!

 

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I think you should buy the rest of the Morpheus eyepieces to go with the 17.5 you already have Mike.  You could then lend them to me for a few years to try them all out :smile:.

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I've used a 30mm XW (long ago) and thought it very nice but I slightly preferred the Nagler 31 too.

I've passed on the 14mm and 20mm XW's in favour of the Delos equivilents mainly because of reports of noticable field curvature in the XW's. Maybe this is overblown though ? - I've not actually tried the 14 and 20 XW's myself to be fair to them.

 

 

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19 hours ago, Paul73 said:

I am a self confessed Delos fan and would probably spend the extra for the more engineered feel of the Televue...... I’d really like to observe with the Pentaxes one day so that I can make a more informed contribution.

I'm sure you'd appreciate the experience - you may find the XWs at least as well put together as the Delos, if not more so; really very solid kit and the views are faultless.

Not preaching to convert, mind you, as it's mostly green on black at my end, these days...

:rolleyes:

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1 hour ago, iPeace said:

Not preaching to convert, mind you, as it's mostly green on black at my end, these days...

:rolleyes:

Don’t worry. I’d be excited to try anything that knowledgeable SGLers recommend. One thing that doesn’t seem to have been touched on is “X Factor”. ie. the some  venerable  Plossls or the Panoptic 24mm. Technically they have flaws, but you can’t help smiling when you use them!?. Or, the technically wonderful eyepieces that leave you cold. This includes most of the Nagler range for me.

Pentax is a brand that I trust from using their binoculars for years. Next star party where there are actually some stars, i’ll seek some out to try.

Paul

 

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