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rwilkey

Omegon Panorama II eyepieces

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Hi all, at the recent IAS meeting I took a gamble on purchasing two Omegon Panorama ep's (15 & 21mm) from astroshop.de as they looked so nice and pristine, but sadly I have not had chance to use them yet, the 2" 15 & 21mm are parfocal, as are the 1.25" 5 & 10mm.  The look of the ep's are very reminiscent of the Meade series 5000 MWA'a and with same focal lengths I would not be surprised if the Omegons were identical but in different clothing, here is a stock picture of one of mine:

Omegon-Panorama-II-2-15mm-eyepiece.jpg.2092cabb5545129d9253c876f46384e1.jpg

There is a positive review here:

http://www.skyatnightmagazine.com/review/eyepieces/omegon-panorama-ii-eyepieces

The Meades can be found here:

https://www.meade.com/series-5000-mega-wide-angle-eyepieces.html

I caught a CN review of their performance which implied the AFoV was less than stated (as low as 82º) but that the ER was good at 20mm.  They are made in China.

So, I was wondering if anyone had any experience or thoughts on these, as the Ethos is way out of my budget range.  I can't wait to use them but the weather here is a killer.

Thanks in advance!

 

Edited by rwilkey
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1 hour ago, rwilkey said:

I don't know how much trust I'd put in a reviewer who fails to even verify the manufacturer's specs with regard to eye relief and apparent field of view.  It wouldn't have taken much effort on his part to project the AFOV onto a wall, measure it, and do the math.  Neither would it have taken much effort to measure the eye relief at the same time.  He didn't even take the time to compare them to their Ethos, ES, or APM equivalents.  If he doesn't have experience with other hyperwide-angle eyepieces, how can he make any sort of comparative analysis?  Basically, he says the views look nice over 90% of the field.  From the entire review, all we can glean is that there is some abberations in the outer 10%.  He also makes no mention of the presence or absence of edge of field brightening.  I would expect better from a magazine review.  His review sounds like a typical Amazon review posted by someone who was given the eyepieces to use and review.

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Hi Louis, if it is the same guy as wrote 'Making Every Photon Count' then he is quite well respected over here, though his expertise is in astro-photography, I have also heard of abberations in the outer edges of this ep. 

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1 hour ago, Cornelius Varley said:

I am fairly certain that the Sky at Night reviewer knows what he is talking about. :D

Me too :)

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1 hour ago, Cornelius Varley said:

I am fairly certain that the Sky at Night reviewer knows what he is talking about. :D

 

25 minutes ago, John said:

Me too :)

 

21 minutes ago, Mr Spock said:

...and me :wink2:

Then why didn't he directly address the online criticisms of these eyepieces and put them to rest once and for all by verifying the manufacturer's AFOV and ER claims 4 years after they were introduced?  You're all certain he alone is correct and everyone else who has bought these and been disappointed by them not living up their claims  doesn't know what they're talking about?  Nor did the reviewer make any effort to see how well it performs in a sub-f/5 scope.  I would like someone like Ernest in Russia to bench test these eyepieces.  He did test the older Meade XWAs, and they lived up to their marketing hype.  All I'm saying is this was not a critical test review by any measure.

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10 hours ago, Louis D said:

Then why didn't he directly address the online criticisms of these eyepieces and put them to rest once and for all by verifying the manufacturer's AFOV and ER claims 4 years after they were introduced?  You're all certain he alone is correct and everyone else who has bought these and been disappointed by them not living up their claims  doesn't know what they're talking about?  Nor did the reviewer make any effort to see how well it performs in a sub-f/5 scope.  I would like someone like Ernest in Russia to bench test these eyepieces.  He did test the older Meade XWAs, and they lived up to their marketing hype.  All I'm saying is this was not a critical test review by any measure.

1

Respectfully, what you may fail to appreciate is that the magazine reviews in question are commissioned, subject to a set of given editorial guidelines, limited to a set number of words, aimed at a particular audience, and are time limited in duration. There is neither the magazine real estate or purchasing audience for the kind of reviews you are suggesting. Those type of in-depth and comparative discussions are much better suited to forum sections where the limited audience who may benefit from them can find them and the devilish details can be discussed at leisure, and where Earnest in Russia may well have room and time to expound or berate the qualities of some item based on his particular expertise and equipment available to do so.  The First Light Reviews in the magazine in question are deliberately discursive in content, and introductory in nature, without getting bogged down in the minefield of personal opinions and manufacturer bias that so often blight discussions surrounding eyepieces, as often demonstrated on Cloudy Nights and a regular source of mirth to the more restrained European astronomy community.

I hope that helps.

Tim in England

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1 hour ago, Tim said:

Respectfully, what you may fail to appreciate is that the magazine reviews in question are commissioned, subject to a set of given editorial guidelines, limited to a set number of words, aimed at a particular audience, and are time limited in duration. There is neither the magazine real estate or purchasing audience for the kind of reviews you are suggesting. Those type of in-depth and comparative discussions are much better suited to forum sections where the limited audience who may benefit from them can find them and the devilish details can be discussed at leisure, and where Earnest in Russia may well have room and time to expound or berate the qualities of some item based on his particular expertise and equipment available to do so.  The First Light Reviews in the magazine in question are deliberately discursive in content, and introductory in nature, without getting bogged down in the minefield of personal opinions and manufacturer bias that so often blight discussions surrounding eyepieces, as often demonstrated on Cloudy Nights and a regular source of mirth to the more restrained European astronomy community.

I hope that helps.

Tim in England

I was just used to Popular and Modern Photography magazines in the US performing in-house bench testing of camera lenses as well as field testing them back in the day.  Of course, they're both long gone now perhaps because of their objectivity.  It's a sad day that magazines have devolved into shills for their advertisers to remain afloat.  It would be nice if they posted a disclaimer on their reviews to that effect to warn newbies to take whatever they publish with a healthy dose of skepticism.

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I think Tim has very kindly explained the review system for the magazine in question both accurately and eloquently so there isn't much to add to his comment.

6 hours ago, Louis D said:

It's a sad day that magazines have devolved into shills for their advertisers to remain afloat.  It would be nice if they posted a disclaimer on their reviews to that effect to warn newbies to take whatever they publish with a healthy dose of skepticism.

I do rather tire of having to explain the way this works every now and again but here it is yet again for the record:- there is no need for scepticism when reading these reviews with regard to advertising revenue. The equipment reviewers, including me, are freelance writers and, for my part, I don't give a hoot whether the equipment I review is from a company that advertises in the magazine or not, I get paid to write the review by the magazine either way. If the equipment in question doesn't work well for me and is not of a suitable quality that the magazine's readership would enjoy using then it will receive a negative review and vice versa. The day the magazine ever pressurizes me to skew a review to reflect a poor piece of equipment in a better light because they fear upsetting an advertiser is the day that I walk, end of. Perhaps I could make this text a sticky somewhere. 😁

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OK, enough hijacking of the thread and back to the OP's original question.

I used my set for three weeks or so when the weather would allow and I rather liked them. I have no idea whether the stated AFOV's are accurate or not so if this is important to you, you should indeed research the issue further. Looking at the notes I made during my review period, my own observations showed the following dislikes:-

  • The dust caps for the eye lens are tapered making them a real pain in the neck to pick up - I found this very frustrating!
  • Even with the rubber eye-cups folded up, eye placement was rather too critical until I had been using them for some time
  • It was only with close scrutiny that I was able to see the whole field of view and this was without spectacles
  • The field stop was not particularly distinct which was rather a shame
  • The 2” undercuts were a good match for my compression rings (William Optics 2" dielectric star diagonal with 1.25" adaptor) but those on the 1.25” versions were far too narrow to be of any use so they were superfluous
  • Having two different barrel sizes is a pain - I much prefer the 'double barrel' design of my Hyperions for quicker eyepiece swapping

@rwilkeyI have always enjoyed reading your own appraisals of various eyepieces on your excellent website so I will be interested to hear how you get on with your 15mm and 21mm versions.

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8 hours ago, Tim said:

Respectfully, what you may fail to appreciate is that the magazine reviews in question are commissioned, subject to a set of given editorial guidelines, limited to a set number of words, aimed at a particular audience, and are time limited in duration. There is neither the magazine real estate or purchasing audience for the kind of reviews you are suggesting. Those type of in-depth and comparative discussions are much better suited to forum sections where the limited audience who may benefit from them can find them and the devilish details can be discussed at leisure, and where Earnest in Russia may well have room and time to expound or berate the qualities of some item based on his particular expertise and equipment available to do so.  The First Light Reviews in the magazine in question are deliberately discursive in content, and introductory in nature, without getting bogged down in the minefield of personal opinions and manufacturer bias that so often blight discussions surrounding eyepieces, as often demonstrated on Cloudy Nights and a regular source of mirth to the more restrained European astronomy community.

I hope that helps.

Tim in England

What he said in 250 words, fully bullet pointed.

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8 minutes ago, steppenwolf said:

@rwilkeyI have always enjoyed reading your own appraisals of various eyepieces on your excellent website so I will be interested to hear how you get on with your 15mm and 21mm versions.

Hi Steve, I am very much looking forward to using them, and I shall report back here.  Really, I published this post because I was so frustrated at not being able to use them and compare opinions, and I thank everyone for their kind replies!

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1 hour ago, steppenwolf said:

OK, enough hijacking of the thread and back to the OP's original question.

I used my set for three weeks or so when the weather would allow and I rather liked them. I have no idea whether the stated AFOV's are accurate or not so if this is important to you, you should indeed research the issue further. Looking at the notes I made during my review period, my own observations showed the following dislikes:-

  • The dust caps for the eye lens are tapered making them a real pain in the neck to pick up - I found this very frustrating!
  • Even with the rubber eye-cups folded up, eye placement was rather too critical until I had been using them for some time
  • It was only with close scrutiny that I was able to see the whole field of view and this was without spectacles
  • The field stop was not particularly distinct which was rather a shame
  • The 2” undercuts were a good match for my compression rings (William Optics 2" dielectric star diagonal with 1.25" adaptor) but those on the 1.25” versions were far too narrow to be of any use so they were superfluous
  • Having two different barrel sizes is a pain - I much prefer the 'double barrel' design of my Hyperions for quicker eyepiece swapping

@rwilkeyI have always enjoyed reading your own appraisals of various eyepieces on your excellent website so I will be interested to hear how you get on with your 15mm and 21mm versions.

Now that's the kind of feedback that should have been in the initial review.  👍  Please try to incorporate such details into your future magazine reviews.

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13 minutes ago, Louis D said:

Now that's the kind of feedback that should have been in the initial review.  👍  Please try to incorporate such details into your future magazine reviews.

Actually, each one of those points was included in the review - what can I say?

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On 06/12/2018 at 14:45, Louis D said:

I don't know how much trust I'd put in a reviewer who fails to even verify the manufacturer's specs ....................His review sounds like a typical Amazon review posted by someone who was given the eyepieces to use and review.

 

11 hours ago, Louis D said:

  It would be nice if they posted a disclaimer on their reviews to that effect to warn newbies to take whatever they publish with a healthy dose of skepticism.

You don't have too, and we don't see your disclaimer?
 

I mean that with some respect, you don't have to take the views of a reviewer as being 100% accurate (  and to cover all  and every aspect is  maybe asking  too much on a forum  like this one, but folk will go out  of their way to try and help,  sharing their views and opinions even if you/we think its skeptical? ).

Even the manufacturers don't give you all the information.
Just about every report here is based on the users own outcome,  be they a newb, amateur or professional, what you see is what you get, and that's true of most reviews here, so in all honesty, take it for what it is.

You'r only going to find out for yourself how good something is by trying it yourself, then if you feel the need, write up something about it, but don't be alarmed now if your slated for missing something?

If someone says, and reports " This eyepiece is the best that money can buy" and you had the money, you may  go and buy it based on that report, but quickly  find it doesn't work to your liking? Is that really  the fault of the reviewer?  will you blame them because they did not mention one particular aspect or left something out completely!  Yes you would, that's your choice,  shown in your first reply to this thread.

Your personal 'attack' on the original review(er) for  not being  up to your expected standard is the reason why this thread is on its present heading? based on your angry wording against a reputable member of this forum.

("Please try to incorporate such details into your future magazine")....... It's  oh-so easy to move on from this, rather than continue with any criticism! 

If you have a real issue PM the author. 

Edited by Charic

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3 hours ago, steppenwolf said:

Actually, each one of those points was included in the review - what can I say?

Indeed.  Upon rereading, they are all there, just toned down.

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2 hours ago, Charic said:

You don't have too, and we don't see your disclaimer?

I buy all of my own eyepieces and never get paid for anything I write.  I use only my own equipment at outreach events.  I'm just disappointed that there are those who would take money in this hobby to write reviews without a disclaimer.  I'm sure Steve is a fine person and has to make a living, and does not let payment taint his judgement as he has stated above.  I'm just a firm believer in volunteerism and have spent countless hours trying to help folks navigate this hobby and don't like the idea of people being paid to write reviews without full disclosure.  Maybe I missed that he did disclose that he was loaned the eyepieces and was compensated for his effort, but I can't find it.  Perhaps it was in the original magazine's print version.

Full Disclosure: I disclose that I don't have and have never had a financial interest in any astronomy related company, nor have I ever been loaned an eyepiece to review (and probably never will now 😁), nor have I ever been paid to write anything astronomy related.

@rwilkey Sorry to hijack your thread and go off on my soapbox.  I hope you get a chance to use your new eyepieces in the near future and report back here on your findings.

I'll shut up now. 🤐

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22 hours ago, Louis D said:

Sorry to hijack your thread and go off on my soapbox.

Not really Louis, I have enjoyed your comments and interaction, so I thank you for this.  I have also enjoyed Steve's defence of his actions.  Thank-you everybody!

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On 08/12/2018 at 16:30, Louis D said:

Maybe I missed that he did disclose that he was loaned the eyepieces and was compensated for his effort, but I can't find it.  Perhaps it was in the original magazine's print version.

This bit I don't get. Magazines are commercial operations, not charities. I have assumed that every single magazine review I have ever read was compensated for in some way, most likely monetary and that kit is often loaned out for that purpose. These reviews are rarely owner reviews so it is naive to think otherwise.

I am all for volunteering of time, and for free outreach to encourage people to take up the hobby. There is obviously a gold mine of information completely free on SGL and the wider web. But if your expertise is in Astronomy and you want to earn some cash from it, and people are prepared to pay for that, why not? It should not be considered wrong I don't think.

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On 08/12/2018 at 16:30, Louis D said:

I buy all of my own eyepieces and never get paid for anything I write.  I use only my own equipment at outreach events.  I'm just disappointed that there are those who would take money in this hobby to write reviews without a disclaimer.  I'm sure Steve is a fine person and has to make a living, and does not let payment taint his judgement as he has stated above.  I'm just a firm believer in volunteerism and have spent countless hours trying to help folks navigate this hobby and don't like the idea of people being paid to write reviews without full disclosure.  Maybe I missed that he did disclose that he was loaned the eyepieces and was compensated for his effort, but I can't find it.  Perhaps it was in the original magazine's print version.

Full Disclosure: I disclose that I don't have and have never had a financial interest in any astronomy related company, nor have I ever been loaned an eyepiece to review (and probably never will now 😁), nor have I ever been paid to write anything astronomy related.

@rwilkey Sorry to hijack your thread and go off on my soapbox.  I hope you get a chance to use your new eyepieces in the near future and report back here on your findings.

I'll shut up now. 🤐

 

I've been following this thread and have kept out of it but this is a step too far. 
You know absolutely nothing about the man you have chosen to attack in this thread. The amount of time he gives freely to help.. well anyone, be it astronomy related or not is simply unprecedented. I know from personal experience that he will never refuse help to anyone. The money he gets for writing an honest review for S&N is a pittance compared to what he could be making if he charged people for his time and effort sorting out problems with scopes, mounts, software etc.

In short, he is probably one of the kindest men you're ever likely to meet and is definitely one of the most respected people in the UK astronomy community and doesn't need someone who knows nothing about him throwing thinly disguised accusations around willy nilly. Remember, this is SGL NOT CN.

You are a good contributor to SGL but on this one, you're just plain wrong. 

In future, please refrain from making accusations about things and people you know nothing about. (both people and the ins and outs of writing articles for magazines).

To all concerned, if we can't keep this thread about the OP's post then I see no option but to close it. 

 

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On 12/8/2018 at 11:23 AM, steppenwolf said:
  • It was only with close scrutiny that I was able to see the whole field of view and this was without spectacles
  • The field stop was not particularly distinct which was rather a shame

Hey,
Maybe it is not significant but I had the opportunity to compare 9 mm 100 degrees Lunt XWA and Omegon Panorama 9 mm 100 degrees in the daylight with F10 achro.

I can only say that the above entries coincide with my observations. It was very hard to cover the whole field of view (almost impossible for me, im not using correction glasses) , when I pressed my eye to the eyepiece and saw the whole field then I fought with the blackouts, when I moved my eye away from the eyepiece, blackouts disappeared but the field of view was very limited, say to about 80 degrees.

Fieldstop was terribly blurred, I can compare it with vignetting in binoviewers with long FL eyepieces.

Maybe it would not be so significant for me if it was not next to Lunt 9 mm. XWA allows you to cover the entire field of view without any problem, there are no blackouts and the fieldstop is black and obvious like the night. Looking through Lunt is a pleasure while Omegon can cause some problems.

Shame that i have no opportunity to do some night test for correction in Panorama.

Regards

Luke

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