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Posted (edited)

Hello fellow skywatchers! i am excited about making a binoviewer purchase, i have never had so much as a peek through them before, but i hear they ratchet the experience up many notches when it comes to planetary and lunar.

I can't afford Denk's or Zeiss, i am looking for a more affordable pair, maybe from Baader or the like, i do see a pair of WO bino's that come as a package with eyepieces, how are these?. 

I would love to hear about your binoviewer experience and why you love yours, i will be using then mainly with my 150 SW Mak, but occasionally with my LX200 8", and i forgot mention, my Lunt 60 which i understand bino's work great 

for solar too!. If there is anything i will need, in addition to bino's, to utilize the viewers to their fullest, please advise, i believe i read on SGL that eyepieces for bino's need not be pricey at all, true?.

Thanks!

 

Screen Shot 2018-07-27 at 9.49.50 PM.png

Edited by Sunshine

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I have the WO and use them on my 125ETX and 120 Frac. For the moon and planets they are amazing, I'd never go back to mono viewing these objects.  Can't compare the WO with other binoviewers as I haven't tried the others.  I think you can pick up used WO that are in great condition, that's what I did.  Whatever brand you choose, I'm sure you will love them.  They are quite heavy so make sure your scope is balanced when you use them. 

Steve 

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There are some threads about binoviewers on this forum.  A number of the more budget binoviewers are essentially the same item under different badging.  The pair I got were from "Sky's the Limit" in the UK and cost me about 120 pounds sterling, including a useful pair of eyepieces. Probably the same as binoviewers costing over 200 pounds.  You can spend much more if money is burning a hole in your pocket. 😀 

Mine worked well on the Moon in particular but I confess I have not used them for a while.

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I have WO binoviewers and love using them with the Lunt 60. However, there are issues to be addressed.

That of balance should be easily sorted, even if it means adding a weight to the front of the scope.

Also, I couldn’t achieve focus on the Lunt using the 1.6 Barlow that came with the BV and had to purchase a WO 2x nosepiece. I prefer viewing a full disc and so I use a pair of long f/l plossls (usually 25mm) to compensate for the increased magnification.

You should also know that BVs will darken the view somewhat, but use of a hood - or towel! - helps to offset this effect. 

I use my BVs for solar and lunar, only. Some folks use them on DSOs and speak highly of the experience; others seem not so impressed. I’ve not got round to trying that, yet.

In summary, go for it! 🤗

 

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Nice set of Baader in the for sale section they are very good I have a set of the Maxbrights 

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Posted (edited)

The only way to observe imho.

Edited by Tubby Bear

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I've recently started using a pair of TS Optics binoviewers for planetary, lunar and double star viewing. With Newtonian reflectors, on initial set up, it can take a bit of experimentation to get the binoviewers to come to focus. You may need to experiment with various spacers and glass path correction lenses to get the focal plane at the right position, correcting for the increased light path in the binoviewers. Teleskop-Express, and others I believe, sell a pair of binoviewers where the internal design means that the light path isn't increased and they should work with no adjustments like a normal eyepiece being fitted in the focus tube. After setting them up I have found that binoviewing is far more comfortable than using a single eyepiece.

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2 hours ago, David Levi said:

Teleskop-Express, and others I believe, sell a pair of binoviewers where the internal design means that the light path isn't increased and they should work with no adjustments like a normal eyepiece being fitted in the focus tube. After setting them up I have found that binoviewing is far more comfortable than using a single eyepiece.

I'd be grateful if you would please provide a link to such binoviewers, as I was put off purchasing them earlier on this year due to focus issues with Newtonians  :)

 

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26 minutes ago, Beulah said:

I'd be grateful if you would please provide a link to such binoviewers, as I was put off purchasing them earlier on this year due to focus issues with Newtonians  :)

 

Unless these are something new, you won’t be able to get focus on a Newt without a 2x or maybe even a 3x GPC. 

I have a 300PDS designed for imaging so already better suited for BVs. It has a Moonlite focuser and even with all the spacers removed I still couldn’t get BVs to focus without a GPC.  It was close but the focuser just doesn’t go in enough.

You can see here the red focuser with black spacers, even when removed it doesnt focus without GPC. 

 

 

9386B931-C849-4A30-8AD3-D2232FB246A0.jpeg

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12 minutes ago, David Levi said:

@Beulah here are the binoviewers I mentioned earlier.

https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p10297_TS-Optics-Binoviewer-1-0-magnification-zero-optical-path-and-erect-image.html

I have the cheaper ones and use the 1.6x GPC together with a shortened focus tube adapter to achieve focus.

They do look interesting, haven't seen any reviews on them so don't know if the additional optics affect the view negatively at all.

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3 minutes ago, Stu said:

haven't seen any reviews on them so don't know if the additional optics affect the view negatively at all

Yes Stu that would be the proof of the pudding. I'm happy with the ones that I have now that the whole set up fuss is over. Thanks to people like you who recommended them.

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Hi. Sorry to jump in, but do refractors need an extra gizmo to bring binoviewers to focus too? (not the binos just mentioned above). Also, I have one eye that's good for distances and the other that can read. How much do the characteristics of your eyes play a part in whether you get on with them?

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It will depend on how much focuser travel you have. Typical binoviewers need around 100mm of inward travel so if you have less than this you will need a barlow/gpc to compensate. 

With regards to your eyes it will depend on what the dioptre difference is between your eyes. For my Starguider binoviewers the dioptre adjustment is a simple twist up/down mechanism. This means that for large differences there will be a height difference between the left and right eyepieces. This may mean you need to observe with glasses even if you do not have significant astigmatism. 

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Hi, @domstar. ‘Jumping in’ is not just allowed but to be encouraged! 🙂

@Ricochet has it right. It will depend on which instrument, or set up, you use. Some refractors may not need any additional ‘gizmo’, others will. That said - and this is just a gut feeling, no forensic analysis - the vibe I pick up is that most applications of binoviewing require a Barlow/glass path corrector to achieve focus.

What’s that get-out line again? The one about your mileage may vary ... 🤔

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@domstar, as said it varies very much between different brands and models. Some, which may be oriented towards imaging a little more have more inwards focus available so are more binoviewers friendly. Some even have removable tube sections to allow native BV use.

Regarding your eyes, dioptre adjustment obviously helps to accommodate the differences. My eyes are very different but not some much in prescription, more in their sensitivity on low light and the resolution they show. I took a long time to get used to BVs but really enjoy them now. They are worth persevering with even if you don't click straight away.

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Has anyone seem these fellas....?

I first saw them in Augusts Astronomy now magazine (p 110)

Check them out

 

 

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I'm puzzled, seriously puzzled why Orion have only made a 1.25" fitting for this ?

Presumably to keep costs down ?

They make it sound so appealing......0 x magnification increase......but tell me what sort of a view i'd get with an F4 Newtonian ?

A dim one i expect. Huge aperture loss, and poor contrast to go with it.

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Alright well, thanks to all for the advice, those Orion bino’s are looking damn fine right now! I think I’ll pull trigger on them double quick.

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IMO and experience, the make and cost of the binoviewer is really not that important.  As long as they are collimated then they will give you much better planetary and lunar images than any single top end eyepiece you can find.  Also, though you need a decent pair of eyepieces they don't have to be wide-field top end eyepieces.  A good pair of Plossls or Orthos will do fine.  They will enable you have all the benefits of bonoviewing at a very modest cost for the gain you get.  If you want to buy more expensive eyepieces,  fine, but try those I've mentioned first and you may decided you don't need to buy any more.

Also, don't be put off by folks saying you'll have problems getting focus in some instruments.  Of course you have to get them to focus, but once you've experimented a little you'll know what works for your telescope - and you only have to do this once and stick to the method.  Binoviewers are most useful for moderate to high powers on the moon and planets, and personally I've never had ANY problem getting a binoviewer to come to focus with any telescope I've tried them on when using a x2 SW barlow element screwed into the nosepiece of the binoviewer.  Be aware though that you will get an increase of magnification of around x4 compared to using the eyepieces alone when using a binoviewer and barlow element in the nosepiece.  Hence try with longer focal length eyepieces first such as 25mm, as they will effectively be operating as 5mm single eyepieces in terms of magnification.

With Maks and SCs of course you won't need a barlow because of the available in-focus, so you won't get any increase in power over that of the eyepieces you are using in these scopes.

Also, some people say they 'can't get on with' a binoviewer.  Well, this may be true for some people but if you persist and practice until you get used to them you'll probably never use a single eyepiece on the planets ever again.

For my own planetary observations I use x2 Baader Mk111 zooms, and a  Maxbright binoviewer  (any binoviewer which is collimated correctly should be fine) with a x2 SW barlow element.  I have never found any single eyepiece that will give me better planetary images when tested side by side with this setup, and that includes Mon, Ethos, Pentax XWs etc etc.

Using a binoviewer will greatly improve your planetary and lunar observations, - honest !  :smile:

 

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1 hour ago, paulastro said:

Also, some people say they 'can't get on with' a binoviewer.  Well, this may be true for some people but if you persist and practice until you get used to them you'll probably never use a single eyepiece on the planets ever again.

For me, persisting has run to 6 or 7 pairs of binos and a number of years (3 or 4?)

I started with solar observing and once I found a setup which worked for that, managed to enjoy lunar. Planetary has taken me the longest, I was seeing more detail with a single eyepiece for a long time, and think it took time to reprogram my brain to process what I was seeing. Binoviewing now works very well for me on all mid to high power targets. Despite being able to use my BVs natively, I'm still unconvinced by low power views, preferring long focal length widefield eyepieces for that.

The best advice though is to try it, and to persist to see whether you can exploit the benefits.

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3 minutes ago, Stu said:

 I'm still unconvinced by low power views, preferring long focal length widefield eyepieces for that.

The best advice though is to try it, and to persist to see whether you can exploit the benefits. 

I heartily agree with both these sentiments Stu.

I too prefer the view through a nice wide field eyepiece where you can see a nice hard stop to the edge of the field and sharp star images to the edge with about a two degree field.  To this end I use a Morpheus 17.5mm which for a glasses wearer like me is a game changer in that you can see the entire 76 degree field without having to peer around while turning your head.

As you say Stu, practice and persistence are the name of the game. All to gain and nothing to lose.   Your own persistence is an example to everyone 👍.

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18 hours ago, Tubby Bear said:

I'm puzzled, seriously puzzled why Orion have only made a 1.25" fitting for this ?

Presumably to keep costs down ?

They make it sound so appealing......0 x magnification increase......but tell me what sort of a view i'd get with an F4 Newtonian ?

A dim one i expect. Huge aperture loss, and poor contrast to go with it.

The exit aperture of this binoviewer is  just over 17mm so no advantage for 2" fitting eyepieces.

 

 

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Peter : i meant the 1.25" nosepiece at the other end, not the eyepiece holders (with are always 1.25" in nearly all systems)

 

I have to disagree with others here as well.

I enjoy low power views a lot of the time using my binos.

I can fit the entire double cluster  into my fov when using the Dob.

Believe me looking at clusters with both eyes with low power is pretty awesome. M11 M13 M42 all look incredible.

I've recently sold my 2" wide field as their was no contest between mono and bino viewing.

Just my humble opinion though......

 

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5 hours ago, Tubby Bear said:

Peter : i meant the 1.25" nosepiece at the other end, not the eyepiece holders (with are always 1.25" in nearly all systems)

 

I have to disagree with others here as well.

I enjoy low power views a lot of the time using my binos.

I can fit the entire double cluster  into my fov when using the Dob.

Believe me looking at clusters with both eyes with low power is pretty awesome. M11 M13 M42 all look incredible.

I've recently sold my 2" wide field as their was no contest between mono and bino viewing.

Just my humble opinion though......

 

I think that is what Peter meant. If the internal aperture is limited to 17mm then there is no benefit to having a 2" nosepiece. It may allow a more secure feeling fitting but doesn't allow more light through the system.

If you find widefield views better then that's great! BVs are a very person experience and if they work well at low power for you then all the better.

One of the things I prefer about single, widefield eyepieces is that you can look around the field of view much more easily. I find with binoviewing that it is best to keep your gaze on axis, or near to it, and move the scope to see different areas of the target. 

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