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russ.will

Lapsed EP addict returns!

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Having walked (unwillingly) away from astronomy about three years ago (divorce etc, etc, but that was willingly!) I find myself ready to re-enter the fold. I'm not going to go mad this time.

I had 12" Dobs (x2) a 5" achro frac, 80mm EDs (x2), 8" Newts (x2) and an 8" SCT. I went from Possls to BST Starguiders, through ES82s, Maxvision/Meade SWAs, Delos and eventually a suite of ES100s, not to mention an Ortho and Plossl (again!) binoviewer diversions along the way! What enforced abstinence has allowed me to evaluate more objectively, is what actually really worked; what really got used and as such was the best value in terms of time spent in use.

Dobs did, so that argument is over, as is the fact that the 8" scopes coped with UK seeing better more often than 12" ones. F6 is easier on EPs than F5 and given that the SW 200p Dob looks somewhat parlous in bearing specification, the Bresser 8" Dobsonian will soon be inbound. It will also travel between Cambridgeshire and my house in rural Normandy* (divorce can pay off!) where the skies are darker than a Norfolk Star Party in a way that something larger can't. Coincidentally I cannot, during these strange times, predict when a visit to either can next happen...

EPs? There does appear to have been a fair bit of development in the arena since I last visited and this time, I do not want an EP for every eventuality.

A Panaview 32mm will fill the role of finder EP well enough.  I had one in the early days and it was better than it is given credit for. I also had an ES82 30mm and it was awesome, but what an expensive, unbalancing lump for just finding stuff.

I kept my ES 1.25" 2x Tele Extender (and a good Cheshire) as it was practically invisible in use and I figured this day may come. I was figuring that I may re-buy a second hand pair of ES82 8.8 & 14mm and Maxvision 24mm SWA (where'd they all go?) as when multiplied x2 they cover every conceivable 1.25" use. Then I saw stuff like OVL Nirvana at a fraction of the price I used to associate with SW Nirvana. What the hell is going on?!?!

What have I missed and what should I be considering these days?

Russ

*I know it sounds grandios but honestly, it cost less than a decent static caravan on a decent site on the Norfolk coast and the wine is better and cheaper. Anyway, by the time the ex had the shirt off my back, I couldn't afford a house in the UK!

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I would consider the 35mm Aero ED for a widest field eyepiece.  It does pretty well at f/6 and nearly maxes out the true field of view possible in a 2" barrel.

The Maxvisions are now sold out, so you'll be looking for used ones.  The Meade 5000 SWAs are the same thing.

The Morpheus eyepieces are nearly as wide as the 82 class eyepieces, are better corrected to the edge, and easier to take in the entire field at once.  They've also added an optional eye cup spacer ring to make it easier to maintain the proper distance from the eyepiece to avoid blackouts for non-eyeglass wearers.

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There is a picture of the Morpheus at the top of this thread and lots of comments about them and comparisons with other EP's in the postings - it might be worth a read?

 

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Sorry to hear of your trials and tribulations Russ. I did wonder where you had gone.

Welcome back.

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12 hours ago, russ.will said:

What have I missed and what should I be considering these days?

Russ

 

That's an easy one to answer. "Baader Morpheus, especially the 17.5mm. Very few eyepieces have the floating before your eye star fields like the old 28mm RKE, but the 17.5mm Baader Morheus does, and so does the 35mm Baader Eudiascopic. They are something special!

At the other extreme, there's the Vixen 3.4,  2.4,  2  &  1.6mm High Resolution eyepieces that reach the Zeiss Abbe Ortho level of performance, and very comfortable with good eye relief. 

You will of course need all the Morpheus and all the Vixen HR's. 😄

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58 minutes ago, mikeDnight said:

That's an easy one to answer. "Baader Morpheus, especially the 17.5mm. Very few eyepieces have the floating before your eye star fields like the old 28mm RKE, but the 17.5mm Baader Morheus does, and so does the 35mm Baader Eudiascopic. They are something special!

At the other extreme, there's the Vixen 3.4,  2.4,  2  &  1.6mm High Resolution eyepieces that reach the Zeiss Abbe Ortho level of performance, and very comfortable with good eye relief. 

You will of course need all the Morpheus and all the Vixen HR's. 😄

And the Takahashi TOE 2.5mm, 3.3mm, and 4.0mm eyepieces which have been getting rave reviews as well.

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5 hours ago, Saganite said:

Sorry to hear of your trials and tribulations Russ. I did wonder where you had gone.

Welcome back.

Don't be sorry, I've never been happier. :)

Russ

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Posted (edited)

I concur with MikeD 👍🏻   I have the 8 and 10mm Delos and a 13mm Ethos.  I’d thought to build up the Delos range, then tried the 17.5mm Morpheus. I shan’t get rid of the excellent Delos pair but I won’t be buying more - I’ll be filling in with Morpheus when I can afford to.  The 17.5 is optically excellent, imv, ditto for the 6.5 which I’ve now bought as well.  Marvellous piece of design and execution as the Ethos is, I wouldn’t spend out on it again. I personally think that (field of view apart, obviously) the Delos has a slight edge over the Ethos and I find that I’m happier with the 72degree or smaller afov than with 100..  But that’s a matter of personal preference ... expensive personal preference 🙂. So, Morpheus - fantastic value!

I have the 3.4mm Vixen HR and the 4mm Tak TOE. These are simply the most astonishing eyepieces I’ve ever used. If pushed, I’d favour the Vixen but couldn’t find anything objective to explain why.  Sharpness, contrast, etc, etc - it is almost pointless talking about these qualities. Both eyepieces somehow manage to combine all the optical quality you could want with being comfortable and a pleasure to use - no squinting about into a pinhole with these.  More than any other eyepieces I’ve tried, they have allowed me to see what my scopes can really do.

Edited by JTEC
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Okay, I'm suspecting the Morpheus may have happened whilst I was AWOL. They appear to tick many boxes. :)

Shame they don't do a 25mm.

Russell

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Posted (edited)

Hi there,

I don't know if the 100 deg FOV is your thing, but I have the APM 100degree 20mm/13mm/9mm eyepieces from Astroshop.eu which are a fraction of the price (£201-£235) as the TV Ethos line and are arguably the same or similar performance as the Ethos depending on who you ask.

I have the 17.5mm Morpheus as well, it's a wonderful eyepiece, but I've barely touched it since getting the APMs.

Tons of choices out there but the APMs are solid contenders. Besides the 100deg versions, there are also the flat field etc. Some great eyepieces that won't make you cry (too much) if you drop and break one! 👍

https://www.astroshop.eu/eyepieces/15_10/m,APM?sort=2&size=2 

BTW, I'd love to try the ES 25mm 100deg EP some time, but it will be a while

1584885982_APMLuntXWA.jpg.cc32b32e22fb680ac805afc60f88686d.jpg

Edited by Ships and Stars
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Posted (edited)

Certainly interesting at that price, S and S.  I guess the 100 degrees would help with that big Dob of yours ... is it driven?  I wonder where the optics for the APMs are sourced.  

Deeply outraged that they have pushed aside the 17.5 mm  Morpheus you bought from me 😂

In case anyone wonders why I spoke so highly of that eyepiece then sold one - I had a pair for binoviewing but preferred the narrower field of a pair of 18mm Tak LEs

Edited by JTEC
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21 minutes ago, Ships and Stars said:

BTW, I'd love to try the ES 25mm 100deg EP some time, but it will be a while

"Occasionally however, there have been a few moments in my astronomy career when a ten second look tells you all you need to know. This was one such moment.  In short, I had bought a problem.  "

https://www.cloudynights.com/articles/cat/user-reviews/explore-scientific-25mm-100-degree-eyepiece-r2813

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18 hours ago, russ.will said:

the Bresser 8" Dobsonian will soon be inbound.

Your f6 200mm could really use the 20mm for unfiltered views of M42 and for so many galaxies IMHO. You have the 32mm Panaview in the works so a much needed tight, high transmission OIII would be a great asset. The only ones I would currently buy are the new Astronomik or new Televue (made by them). I have the new Televue OIII and it is a bit better than a superb, older copy of the Lumicon.

The 12.5mm Morph or the 13mm 100 APM could also be an asset IMHO.

The 20mm HDC I have is a rival for the 21E, for filtered neb contrast in fast scopes it edges the 21E out. Using the Paracorr II the 21E is perfect to the edge, the 20mm HDC  has a very small amount of astig at the very edge of the FS.

I use the 20mm HDC almost exclusively... and is essentially parfocal with the 21E.

There are many many good choices out there now that are not green and black:hiding:

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jetstream said:

"Occasionally however, there have been a few moments in my astronomy career when a ten second look tells you all you need to know. This was one such moment.  In short, I had bought a problem.  "

https://www.cloudynights.com/articles/cat/user-reviews/explore-scientific-25mm-100-degree-eyepiece-r2813

Perhaps I'll try one someday instead! Ouch, not a good impression...

Edited by Ships and Stars

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Louis D said:

You will of course need all the Morpheus and all the Vixen HR's. 😄

And the Takahashi TOE 2.5mm, 3.3mm, and 4.0mm eyepieces which have been getting rave reviews..

...and a very healthy and readily available bank balance!!🤑😊

Dave

Edited by F15Rules
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2 hours ago, JTEC said:

Certainly interesting at that price, S and S.  I guess the 100 degrees would help with that big Dob of yours ... is it driven?  I wonder where the optics for the APMs are sourced.  

Deeply outraged that they have pushed aside the 17.5 mm  Morpheus you bought from me 😖😂

In case anyone wonders why I spoke so highly of that eyepiece then sold one - I had a pair for binoviewing but preferred the narrower field of a pair of 18mm Tak LEs

Haha, I won't be selling the Morpheus! It's one of the few wide angle EPs I can use wearing glasses. My 300p is undriven, the 500p has GOTO, but the APMs perform well in both, I think they are an excellent bargain for the price and the quality seems up there with the best. I hesitated on the 9mm APM, but this time of year I find myself using it the most for galaxies and lunar views.

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3 hours ago, Ships and Stars said:

Hi there,

I don't know if the 100 deg FOV is your thing, but I have the APM 100degree 20mm/13mm/9mm eyepieces from Astroshop.eu which are a fraction of the price (£201-£235) as the TV Ethos line and are arguably the same or similar performance as the Ethos depending on who you ask.

I have the 17.5mm Morpheus as well, it's a wonderful eyepiece, but I've barely touched it since getting the APMs.

Tons of choices out there but the APMs are solid contenders. Besides the 100deg versions, there are also the flat field etc. Some great eyepieces that won't make you cry (too much) if you drop and break one! 👍

https://www.astroshop.eu/eyepieces/15_10/m,APM?sort=2&size=2 

BTW, I'd love to try the ES 25mm 100deg EP some time, but it will be a while

1584885982_APMLuntXWA.jpg.cc32b32e22fb680ac805afc60f88686d.jpg

I had the ES100 9, 14 & 20mm at the same time as a 12" ES Dob and Meade 8" LX200 SCT.

I Loved them. I loved that walk in view. I loved the neutrality of colour. I loved that people missed the point about seeing the field stop; the whole point was that you don't need to. I loved that not having to see the field stop meant not obsessing about colourful stars at the EoF, because who the hell wants to view stuff at the field stop anyway? I loved that switching between them didn't mean having to switch adaptors or rebalance the scope.

Scratched that itch and not going there again. 100deg is too expensive, but glad I did it.

Russ

 

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9 hours ago, mikeDnight said:

That's an easy one to answer. "Baader Morpheus, especially the 17.5mm. Very few eyepieces have the floating before your eye star fields like the old 28mm RKE, but the 17.5mm Baader Morheus does, and so does the 35mm Baader Eudiascopic. They are something special!

At the other extreme, there's the Vixen 3.4,  2.4,  2  &  1.6mm High Resolution eyepieces that reach the Zeiss Abbe Ortho level of performance, and very comfortable with good eye relief. 

You will of course need all the Morpheus and all the Vixen HR's. 😄

This, but not the tiny FL EPs. 

I can remember one (stunning) night when views of >200x views were worth it and I had a TV 3-6mm Zoom. There's one I should have kept...

One night. Not spending money on an EP for that and certainly not a brace or more!

Russ

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The more I look at the Baader Morpheus, the more they appeal and that in part is due to the dual 1.25"/2" barrels.

On the face of it, it means I can bolt my ES 1.25" 2x Tele-extender into a self-centering adaptor and forego faffing with switching formats. With two (maybe three) EPs and the ES T-E I'm covered. That said, thoughts like this have been scotched in the past by R&P focusers that lack the travel to cope with the length of something additional in the focuser-EP chain. We'll see.

What does worry me having had some TV Delos is the long ER. I did NOT get on with Delos as I found eye position fussy in terms of kidney beaning/blackouts, despite spending an enormous amount of time faffing with the admittedly huge range of eye-cup positions. I seem (historically) to get on with ER in the 12-15mm range and Morpheus is definitely in Delos territory.

I note that the @BillP review mentions the Morpheus being particularly un-fussy in this respect, but I would be interested to hear from Bill or Morpheus users in this regard.

Russell

 

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20 minutes ago, russ.will said:

What does worry me having had some TV Delos is the long ER. I did NOT get on with Delos as I found eye position fussy in terms of kidney beaning/blackouts, despite spending an enormous amount of time faffing with the admittedly huge range of eye-cup positions. I seem (historically) to get on with ER in the 12-15mm range and Morpheus is definitely in Delos territory.

I note that the @BillP review mentions the Morpheus being particularly un-fussy in this respect, but I would be interested to hear from Bill or Morpheus users in this regard.

I use Delos, Morpheus, XL, XW, AF70, ES-92 and others all with long eye relief with eyeglasses without issues.  However, I could understand folks having issues when not wearing glasses.  I have a hard time holding the exit pupil on eyepieces with 30mm+ eye relief even with eyeglasses because I'm so far away that nothing on my face touches the eyepiece to help anchor my viewing position.  As long as part of my eyeglasses, nose, cheek, or eyebrow lightly touches some part of the eyepiece, it helps with maintaining a solid view.  I also can't observe standing because I wobble all over the place.  Sitting helps immensely.

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Posted (edited)

I don't wear glasses to view and find the Morphs very comfortable, especially since they introduced the much improved screw-on eyeguard and extender. 

The 17.5mm is for me pretty much a perfect eyepiece, but they are all excellent (my first Morpheus was the 14mm and it supplanted my Pentax XW14, which had significant field curvature, second only to the XW20mm which was even worse for FC - that one I replaced with a Vixen LVW 22mm, one of the most underrated widefields ever IMO).

Oh, and they all work well with a decent barlow like yours..in my case a Hyperion zoom 2.25x Barlow. Buy with confidence👍

Dave

Edited by F15Rules
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For low power, a 30mm APM UltraFlat Field eyepiece is a winner.

It's lighter and smaller and as sharp as the 31mm Nagler and 30mm Pentax XW, with which it competes.  And compatible with glasses.

 

The next one needed is something like the 17.5 Morpheus.  Wider, which befits a higher power, and also compatible with glasses.

If you don't need glasses, the TeleVue Nagler Type 6 eyepieces could round out the higher powers (down to a 3.5mm eyepiece).

The APM 100s are a good value, too, and the shortest focal lengths are the best-corrected, I've found.

It makes sense to go wider in apparent field as the magnification goes up, to keep the field from shrinking too much.

Especially in an undriven dob, where things can go whizzing through the field and a wider eyepiece gives you more time between nudges.

 

Russ, though the Morpheus can be used as 2" eyepieces, you should think of them as 1.25", because if used as 2", they require an enormous amount of out-travel at the focuser.

They are closer to parfocal with a lot of other eyepieces if used as 1.25".  There is no harm in using them that way.  All the eyepieces I've mentioned except the 30mm APM can be used as 1.25" eyepieces.

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7 hours ago, Louis D said:

I use Delos, Morpheus, XL, XW, AF70, ES-92 and others all with long eye relief with eyeglasses without issues.  However, I could understand folks having issues when not wearing glasses.  I have a hard time holding the exit pupil on eyepieces with 30mm+ eye relief even with eyeglasses because I'm so far away that nothing on my face touches the eyepiece to help anchor my viewing position.  As long as part of my eyeglasses, nose, cheek, or eyebrow lightly touches some part of the eyepiece, it helps with maintaining a solid view.  I also can't observe standing because I wobble all over the place.  Sitting helps immensely.

Exactly that.

Russ

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