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300p flextube budget eyepieces


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Having acquired a 300p flextube. I am wondering if any owners of this telescope can recommend some budget eyepieces that work okay with this if any.

As it stands, I only have the Celestron Eye-opener eyepiece and filter kit. Am I correct in thinking these Plössl eyepieces will give a decent image, just with a narrow fov?

I was thinking along the lines of BST Starguiders, Baader Zoom, etc.

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10 hours ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

I am wondering if any owners of this telescope can recommend some budget eyepieces that work okay with this if any.

As it stands, I only have the Celestron Eye-opener eyepiece and filter kit. Am I correct in thinking these Plössl eyepieces will give a decent image, just with a narrow fov?

I was thinking along the lines of BST Starguiders, Baader Zoom, etc.

"Budget" and "Baader Zoom" do not tend to fit well together. I like my 8-24mm Baader zoom, and, together with its companion 2.25x Barlow, gives me a 4mm to 24mm eyepiece range. I also have a "budget" 8-24mm zoom - it cost about a quarter of the price of the Baader, but is not far behind in performance.

With my 250PX flextube Skyliner, I tend to start with my 32mm Plossl, and then go to the zoom.

When I bought my Skymax 127, probably a couple of decades ago, the Skywatcher/Celestron importer for the UK, OVL, were offering a discount on the, cased, eyepiece and filter set. I am a glasses wearer, and the 6mm & 8mm Plossl eyepieces do not have enough eye relief, but the 13mm, 17mm & 32mm Plossls are fine. I also have the Svbony "ultrawide" (about 68 degrees) 6, 9, 15, & 20mm eyepice set, and these are worth considering.

But, as "Spile" suggests, give your existing eyepieces a proper evaluation, and then consider filling the gaps.

Geoff

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10 hours ago, Spile said:

Why not see how you get on with the eyepieces you already have?

I will, but don't feel very confident as they are cheap, have poor eye relief and a narrow fov.

I was hoping some experienced members could recommend something that would be a step up, that wouldn't break the bank, and more importantly, that also works well with this fast telescope.

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The middle range BST Starguiders (18mm - 8mm) do quite well in faster scopes like your F/5 12 inch dob. The 25mm in that range is not so good.

For low power I found the 30mm Vixen NPL did a good job for it's price.

F/5 is quite challenging focal ratio for wide field eyepieces so, on a budget, the choice is limited.

 

 

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5 hours ago, Geoff Lister said:

"Budget" and "Baader Zoom" do not tend to fit well together. I like my 8-24mm Baader zoom, and, together with its companion 2.25x Barlow, gives me a 4mm to 24mm eyepiece range. I also have a "budget" 8-24mm zoom - it cost about a quarter of the price of the Baader, but is not far behind in performance.

With my 250PX flextube Skyliner, I tend to start with my 32mm Plossl, and then go to the zoom.

When I bought my Skymax 127, probably a couple of decades ago, the Skywatcher/Celestron importer for the UK, OVL, were offering a discount on the, cased, eyepiece and filter set. I am a glasses wearer, and the 6mm & 8mm Plossl eyepieces do not have enough eye relief, but the 13mm, 17mm & 32mm Plossls are fine. I also have the Svbony "ultrawide" (about 68 degrees) 6, 9, 15, & 20mm eyepice set, and these are worth considering.

But, as "Spile" suggests, give your existing eyepieces a proper evaluation, and then consider filling the gaps.

Geoff

I've read that the Baader Zoom is a quality zoom, I suppose when I said budget I just meant something decent that isn't going to break the bank. For me it would be a budget option instead of having to fork out for the likes of ethos, Naglers, etc.

My real wonder is what others are using to getting the most from this telescope. Is a coma corrector needed? Are the likes of the Morpheus range perfect for it, etc?

Edited by Pitch Black Skies
typo
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3 hours ago, John said:

The middle range BST Starguiders (18mm - 8mm) do quite well in faster scopes like your F/5 12 inch dob. The 25mm in that range is not so good.

For low power I found the 30mm Vixen NPL did a good job for it's price.

F/5 is quite challenging focal ratio for wide field eyepieces so, on a budget, the choice is limited.

 

 

Great, I actually had the 8mm & 15mm with my 200p, really liked them. At f6 they were grand, wasn't sure how they would cope at f5.

Otherwise, I was looking at the likes of Hyperions, ES68 or maybe even TV Plössls.

Edited by Pitch Black Skies
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10 minutes ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

Great, I actually had the 8mm & 15mm with my 200p, really liked them. At f6 they were grand, wasn't sure how they would cope at f5.

Otherwise I looking at the like of Hyperions, ES68 or TV Plössls.

At F/5 the outer field of view will show a little more distortion. I found the 8mm BST quite acceptable in my F/5.3 12 inch dob for it's price.

I don't recommend Hyperions in scopes faster than F/8 - they are nicely made eyepieces and great in slower scopes but don't seem well corrected for the faster focal ratios. The zoom seems better but it's not a wide field eyepiece at the longer focal lengths.

Unfortunately the old adage "Sharp across the field in fast scopes : Wide angle of view : Low cost = pick any two" still holds :rolleyes2:

The ES 68's and TV Plossls do pretty well.

 

Edited by John
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If you want to go on a really low budget have a look at the facebook group "A Second Look: Reusing Old Lenses for Astronomy"

My favourite budget lower power eyepieces are now the pair that I extracted from a pair of Lidls (bresser) 10x50 binoculars that were broken, fairly easy to do and just need to be installed into some suitable 1.25 inch pipe (old vacuum cleaner pipe in my case)

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2 hours ago, John said:

At F/5 the outer field of view will show a little more distortion. I found the 8mm BST quite acceptable in my F/5.3 12 inch dob for it's price.

I don't recommend Hyperions in scopes faster than F/8 - they are nicely made eyepieces and great in slower scopes but don't seem well corrected for the faster focal ratios. The zoom seems better but it's not a wide field eyepiece at the longer focal lengths.

Unfortunately the old adage "Sharp across the field in fast scopes : Wide angle of view : Low cost = pick any two" still holds :rolleyes2:

The ES 68's and TV Plossls do pretty well.

 

Glad you mentioned that about the Hyperions. I've seen on a few occasions, people saying Plössl eyepieces in general give excellent views, as long as you don't mind a narrower fov. Is there much truth in that?

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57 minutes ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

Glad you mentioned that about the Hyperions. I've seen on a few occasions, people saying Plössl eyepieces in general give excellent views, as long as you don't mind a narrower fov. Is there much truth in that?

You can find plenty of folk on here praising the ortho design eyepieces for higher magnification work , citing fewer elements in that simpler design as a good thing, and not worried about the tiny fov (40 degrees I think?)  and minimal eye relief. Very different to the usual expensive, big, wide fov , multi element eyepieces which usually get the love 🙂 

It all  depends on so many factors (price, 'scopes, eyesight, preferences for features, type of target, willingness to compromise on one factor,  etc etc) that I doubt there is a 'best' to be found for any one individual without trying out a lot of possibilities for yourself. Which is why quite a lot of second hand eyepieces come up for sale on here , and (if interesting and sensibly priced ) are speedily snapped up ...

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I have the SW 300p and I'm very happy with the 12mm and 8mm BSTs. I tend to use them much more often than my MEAD plossls. I also use a Seben 24-8mm zoom and GSO 2.5x barlow with good results, especially on planets.

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49 minutes ago, Tiny Clanger said:

You can find plenty of folk on here praising the ortho design eyepieces for higher magnification work , citing fewer elements in that simpler design as a good thing, and not worried about the tiny fov (40 degrees I think?)  and minimal eye relief. Very different to the usual expensive, big, wide fov , multi element eyepieces which usually get the love 🙂 

It all  depends on so many factors (price, 'scopes, eyesight, preferences for features, type of target, willingness to compromise on one factor,  etc etc) that I doubt there is a 'best' to be found for any one individual without trying out a lot of possibilities for yourself. Which is why quite a lot of second hand eyepieces come up for sale on here , and (if interesting and sensibly priced ) are speedily snapped up ...

Thanks Heather,

I think you're right. Like most things, it really depends.

 

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34 minutes ago, Ceramus said:

I have the SW 300p and I'm very happy with the 12mm and 8mm BSTs. I tend to use them much more often than my MEAD plossls. I also use a Seben 24-8mm zoom and GSO 2.5x barlow with good results, especially on planets.

Thank you, glad to see the BSTs getting more praise.

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11 hours ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

I will, but don't feel very confident as they are cheap, have poor eye relief and a narrow fov.

I was hoping some experienced members could recommend something that would be a step up, that wouldn't break the bank, and more importantly, that also works well with this fast telescope.

I spent a month or so with my 25mm and 10mm eyepiece set and went down the zoom route (details below) and it’s worked for me but I can see the appeal of some reasonably priced fixed eyepieces. 

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I’ve found the 5mm BST works quite well in my 10” f.4.8 Dob. It’s certainly not premium but neither is the price!!  I have a set of TV Radians, they’re definitely better especially towards the edge of field. But with the BSTs,  if you don’t mind extra nudging to avoid the edges I personally think they’re very good. If you also take into account the very low price of the BSTs they are excellent 👍

But you may find that in your 300p the previously recommended 8mm BST gives a high enough top magnification.

Ed.

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8 minutes ago, Spile said:

I spent a month or so with my 25mm and 10mm eyepiece set and went down the zoom route (details below) and it’s worked for me but I can see the appeal of some reasonably priced fixed eyepieces. 

Zooms sound interesting, I've never used one. I've heard the fov gets a little tight on the lower end though which could be unpleasant. I would be interested to know if any members use one on an f5, and how they find it performs. From what I gather from reading threads, the Baader zoom seems to be the "go to" one. But isn't that based on the Hyperion line? And as John has already alluded to, they won't work well with my telescope.

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6 minutes ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

Zooms sound interesting, I've never used one. I've heard the fov gets a little tight on the lower end though which could be unpleasant. I would be interested to know if any members use one on an f5, and how they find it performs. From what I gather from reading threads, the Baader zoom seems to be the "go to" one. But isn't that based on the Hyperion line? And as John has already alluded to, they won't work well with my telescope.

The Hyperion zoom is a different optical design to the fixed focal length Hyperions. To me, the ones I've had seemed better corrected in the outer part of the field of view than the fixed focal length Hyperions but that might be because the zoom has a narrower field of view than the fixed eyepieces - it varies from 44 degrees at the 24mm focal length to 68 degrees at 8mm. These figures are slightly different from the official specs for the zoom but are the result of independant measurements by owners.

 

 

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11 minutes ago, NGC 1502 said:


I’ve found the 5mm BST works quite well in my 10” f.4.8 Dob. It’s certainly not premium but neither is the price!!  I have a set of TV Radians, they’re definitely better especially towards the edge of field. But with the BSTs,  if you don’t mind extra nudging to avoid the edges I personally think they’re very good. If you also take into account the very low price of the BSTs they are excellent 👍

But you may find that in your 300p the previously recommended 8mm BST gives a high enough top magnification.

Ed.

Cheers Ed,

Looks like it's the BSTs again so.

Just kicking myself now that I recently sold my 8mm & 15mm BSTs while I had the 200p.

Sounds they would be fine in the 300p.

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7 minutes ago, John said:

The Hyperion zoom is a different optical design to the fixed focal length Hyperions. To me, the ones I've had seemed better corrected in the outer part of the field of view than the fixed focal length Hyperions but that might be because the zoom has a narrower field of view than the fixed eyepieces - it varies from 44 degrees at the 24mm focal length to 68 degrees at 8mm. These figures are slightly different from the official specs for the zoom but are the result of independant measurements by owners.

 

 

I see, interesting. 68° seems pretty decent to me. I love the idea of being able to find your object, and then zoom in as far as conditions allow, very convenient. Would definitely need a low power eyepiece to compliment it though. Are they okay in fast scopes do you know?

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1 minute ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

I see, interesting. 68° seems pretty decent to me. I love the idea of being able to find your object, and then zoom in as far as conditions allow, very convenient. Would definitely need a low power eyepiece to compliment it though. Are they okay in fast scopes do you know?

I've used the Baader zoom down to F/5.3 and it seemed quite well corrected across it's field of view. Not perfect but given it's versatility, quite usable.

You will want a fixed focal length eyepiece for lower power observing though - the field of view of the zoom at 24mm is rather constricted.

 

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As John said, with the zoom, the FOV decreases towards the 24mm end. If you are star-hopping through the eyepiece, you need a low powered EP.

I have the Baader zoom, plus the matching barlow. You can find them second-hand occasionally (as I did). I have a few low-powered EPs but the one I use the most is the Vixen NPL 30mm - nice simple and light. You can get wider views - down to a 32mm plossl - which is the widest field for a 1.25" EP. You also have the option of 2" EPs. 

The zoom is useful for working out what fixed IP you might want to use, but half the time I just stick with it. It's also great for planetary observing, when you end up flitting between different (higher) powers, to get the best view in variable seeing conditions.

 

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2 hours ago, Pitch Black Skies said:

Cheers Ed,

Looks like it's the BSTs again so.

Just kicking myself now that I recently sold my 8mm & 15mm BSTs while I had the 200p.

Sounds they would be fine in the 300p.



Indeed many of us have sold stuff then regretted it…….

…..…like when I stupidly sold my wonderful AstroSystems 8.5” 😢😢😢

Edited by NGC 1502
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