Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

Relpet

2" Barlow - still looking

Recommended Posts

Just a big thank you to everyone who responded to this post.  If fate had played me a different hand I would have a private observatory in ever-clear, unpolluted skies.  I would be chauffeur-driven to the site in my limousine and a liveried footman in kid gloves would align my 30" scope to the subject of my choice for me to view from an infinitely adjustable padded leather armchair.  A second footman would bring me the occasional glass of Armagnac on a silver tray.  And I would be using some of the lenses or focal extenders recommended to me in this post.

As it is I wheel my 8" Dob out of my barn on a self-made trolley, built from a packing case, and hope I can get some decent viewing before the next bank of cloud rolls up from the Atlantic 250 miles away.  I will use the EPs I can afford and look forward to receiving the 2" GSO Barlow I have now ordered from Poland at a cost of 285 zlotys, or about £49.

That's all folks! and thank you again.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The W70's, like many wide field, low cost eyepieces, are great in slow scopes but show lots of outer field astigmatism in scopes faster than F/7. Most of the W70's are the same eypiece as the Skywatcher UWA and Orion Expanse Mk 1 66 degree eyepieces. Take the aluminum body off the W70 and you find a 66 degree eyepiece lurking within, complete with original logos !

The Antares 1.6x 2" barlow is great optically. The early, non-compression ring ones are the best. When Antares switched to the compression ring fitting and added filter threads to the 2" barrel they lost quite a bit of the body length of the unit. The result is that the newer models need a lot more focus travel to come to focus. The old version would come to focus with all my eyepieces in my 12" F/5.3 dobsonian but the new version of the unit would not - I ran out of inwards focuser travel with more than half of my eyepieces. I reluctantly had to return the new unit to the supplier because of this issue.

The Antares Speers-Waler eyepieces are really interesting. The shorter focal length ones and the zoom come close to Nagler type performance in some scopes. The focal lengths longer than 10mm are more mediocre. All need quite a lot of inwards focuser movement to bring them to focus which can be an issue.

The above notes are based on my ownership of the products metioned over a few years.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest

I had to give some thought to your quite profound answer (for which many thanks) before replying.

As one of the other Loungers said, there is false economy in repeatedly buying cheap but, at the same time, there is a natural limit to one's budget and one's ultimate requirement.  I've left my entry into this fascinating pastime too late in life to carry the same aspirations as the dedicated younger amateur with a far healthier income.  I have, like most, to do the best I can with what I've got in the time available.

I wrote to Alan at Sky's the Limit last night and asked some pertinent questions.  It's a point in his favour that he answered before I had made breakfast this morning.

The Barlow is made in China.  He suspects it is marketed under a number of respected brand names.  It has never been subjected to a comparative review by professionals but in the seven years he has been selling the item he has never had one returned - for any reason.  On those grounds it would be worth taking a chance, as you suggest.  However, the reaction to my original question has led to a number of different responses that are worth examining and I am not in that much of a hurry.  I am grateful, though, for your perspective on the human psychology that sometimes deflects us from a choice that would be more suitable to any of us as individuals but.not necessarily the wisest for all and sundry.

Crikey, I do love SGL. Thanks again

I read your original post and Dave's response and found myself remembering the kicking ......I gave myself...when I had to replace all the low end equipment I bought in my early days in this hobby with more expensive higher end stuff when I realised the difference quality makes to the view/image.

Dave's right - it pays off if you can make sacrifices to go high end - I've been shocked at the difference some of my recent upgrades have made and I caught myself wondering if that cheaper diagonal I bought back in 08' had robbed me of better times ...and views 

You know what - it didn't, and you won't be robbed either if you go for a basic bit of equipment in the short term - you'll have a blast like we all do ....and then in the future if you can find the cash - you can upgrade - and kick yourself like I did - but remember that you wouldn't have seen what you saw if you waited :-)

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very interesting reading, Ruud, but after checking prices I would need to win the national lottery!  Sadly he poured cold water on the GSO.  Will keep searching.

I would be very sceptical of reports on other websites, made by seasoned Astronomers, of their personal views on optical equipment. The rank and file are the ones that use the various manufactured optics, often the same article under a different name.

To write off a number of makes, as to "save up for something better", is an optical comment too far in my view. The most expensive brands are, if you can afford them, worth the investment, with quality glass and manufacture, but coming down the pile there are those makes that have satisfied the many and the GSO should serve well until finances permit otherwise, enjoy :) 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would be very sceptical of reports on other websites, made by seasoned Astronomers, of their personal views on optical equipment. The rank and file are the ones that use the various manufactured optics, often the same article under a different name.

To write off a number of makes, as to "save up for something better", is an optical comment too far in my view. The most expensive brands are, if you can afford them, worth the investment, with quality glass and manufacture, but coming down the pile there are those makes that have satisfied the many and the GSO should serve well until finances permit otherwise, enjoy :)

There have been so many words of wisdom posted in this thread and you've added a few more.  The GSO Barlow has had so much praise heaped on it elsewhere that, after a bit of thought,  I disregarded that rather unnecessary slight.  The Polish company I've ordered it from are behaving impeccably, even to the point where they checked my address in France as it seemed to be missing a street name and house number.  That's the way it is in rural France but they wanted to be sure the item would get to me.  I look forward to dealing with them again. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought a basic 3x barlow from this vendor and a Meade coated one via ebay. (used item).

The Meade prooduct, whilst sturdier, gave a dim view that I can only ascribe to the coatings.   The cheaper and basic unit from the vendor here produces much sharper and more contrasty(?) views.

Neither items resemble the one in the original posters pic I must say.

Just my observations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi there,

Keep your money for something that will quarantee perfomance and structure.

Tele vue powermate.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi there,

Keep your money for something that will quarantee perfomance and structure.

Tele vue powermate.

Steve

Thanks Steve but the GSO Barlow arrived from Poland yesterday.  I used it tonight on the moon with a 25mm ES EP and for someone at my level I doubt I could have bought better.  I was thrilled with this combination.  Saturn with the GSO Barlow and a 12mm 1.25 BST EP as good as I've seen it with a 5mm BST 1.25 EP on its own.  The TV Powermate may be some way off now!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Peter,

that will serve you well until you sack your Gin Wallah !! :grin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.