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Piero

Nice Moon last night

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Piero    2,729

Yesterday was cloudy and rainy here in Cambridge, but the sky became clear in the late evening. I took the telescope out at 11pm for one hour lunar observing, and it surprised me that the views at 200x were actually more than acceptable despite the average seeing. All in all, I spent a very nice time in my quiet garden looking at this target. My knowledge of the Moon is rather poor, so it was more about contemplating the views here and there rather than a careful study of a selected set of craters. I recently found a good Android app, Moon Atlas 3D, which seems perfect for navigating the Moon at the eyepiece. 

Last night I took out both the Zeiss zoom + VIP (1.76x) and the Nikon zoom + Zeiss barlow (2.86x). Although I didn't plan to do any serious comparison, it happened to swap between the two a few times. They are both very good combinations, but to my eye the Zeiss zoom showed a better view as far as lunar observing concerns. The colour of the Moon was just white on the Zeiss zoom, whereas it was a bit more yellow in the Nikon zoom (a bit like the Vixen SLV). Also, features were depicted with a bit higher contrast in the Zeiss zoom. Macrobius Crater was chosen for this test at ~190x-200x. Essentially, the Zeiss zoom showed incisive lines and details even when these were minute. The view was basically photographic. The Nikon zoom (with Zeiss barlow) was very close but those tiny features were not as precisely designed as the Zeiss did. ~200x with the Tak 100mm is still a moderate magnification and more is needed for testing eyepieces (in my opinion at least). For instance, those minute features were visible in both the zooms at 200x, but it might be that at higher magnifications, the image in the Nikon breaks with more evidence (e.g. missing a feature completely). In any case, to me the Nikon + Zeiss barlow is a great, light, and comfortable combo which suits small telescopes very well.

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John    17,139

Interesting report Piero :icon_biggrin:

Did you try the VIP barlow with the Nikon and the Zeiss Barlow with the Zeiss to see what impact the barlows were having ?

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Piero    2,729

Thanks John. :) 

No, I haven't tried it. I swapped the two barlows with other eyepieces, my previous 9mm and 5mm Vixen SLV, and the Nikon zoom using the TV60. At the time, I was not able to discern any difference, which made me wonder whether the glass is the same but just mounted differently. It was a tricky test though as the VIP moves the focus quite a lot.

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Piero    2,729
8 hours ago, Piero said:

I swapped the two barlows with other eyepieces, my previous 9mm and 5mm Vixen SLV, and the Nikon zoom using the TV60. At the time, I was not able to discern any difference, which made me wonder whether the glass is the same but just mounted differently.

Just found this previous post by Andreas (the first serious astro user of the Leica zoom) where he compared the VIP against the ZAB: https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/563216-carl-zeiss-abbe-2x-barlow-back-in-production/#entry7647944 . 

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jetstream    3,999

Great report Piero!

I also find the Zeiss zoom/VIP combination superb, giving chiseled definition. Your Tak is working very well for you!

 

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Piero    2,729
4 hours ago, jetstream said:

Great report Piero!

I also find the Zeiss zoom/VIP combination superb, giving chiseled definition. Your Tak is working very well for you!

 

Indeed Gerry! :) 

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