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Skymax 127 focal reducer for visual


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I'm going to be taking my Skymax 127 to Fuerteventura in June to make the most of the pristine dark skies out there. Last time I only had a pair of 12x70s, and the 200P is just a definite no for international travel. 

I'm wondering if it would be worth buying a focal reducer. My understanding is that this will effectively halve the focal length, providing a wider field and brighter image - exactly what is needed for more diffuse open clusters and larger nebulae and galaxies. It seems having this in my bag would extend the usability of the Mak under dark skies, to really make the most of the conditions. I'm purely visual with the odd phone picture I like to take here and there. FLO has an Astro Essentials 0.5x reducer for £19 - is it worth it? Why or why not? Alternatives? Recommendations? 

My current eyepieces are 40, 25, 15 and 9mm.

Edited by OK Apricot
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Not going to help much - and you don't really need it.

Eyepieces that you already have - 40mm one in particular, will use up complete illuminated field provided by telescope - you can't get wider field because scope does not provide it, so focal reducer won't help.

What you will see is smaller central portion of the FOV with strong vignetting - so you'll see same piece of the sky only smaller.

If you want to get the maximum out of SkyMax - maybe look into changing back port of the scope for 2" version. It won't add much, but maybe you'll be able to use 30mm or there about field stop eyepieces in 2" format compared to 27mm max of 1.25" format. That is maybe 10% increase in max FOV, and odds are - it will have some vignetting.

 

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Those low cost 0.5x FRs impart loads of field curvature to the image, so not very useful in my opinion.

If you go with a 2" visual back, 2" diagonal, and 2" widest field eyepiece, you'll see an improvement in true field of view similar to below with gradual vignetting:

220226258_Max127MakTFOVComparison.thumb.jpg.fa1c73bddd25963f5af583532ef1f858.jpg

It does help when centering bright objects in particular given how narrow the true field of view is.

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