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I am thinking of getting the Tal 3x Barlow available at FLO for use with a Skywatcher Skyliner 250PX Dobsonian (F/4.7) and the included 10mm and 25mm eyepieces. I think this is a cheaper option than buying another eyepiece. I've already got a Meade 2X barlow (that was included with a 114mm reflector). Am I making the right decision? Would these barlows be adequte for a beginner? Are they compatible with an F/4.7 scope?

Thanks

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I think this is a cheaper option than buying another eyepiece.

Buying nothing is cheaper still. Cheaper is not always best.

What are you trying to achieve? There is a gaping hole in your power repertoire, which would be filled by an eyepiece in the 15mm - 16mm range but not by any barlow. I'd fill that first.

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Thanks for your advice. Since I can already achieve low and medium powers I wanted achieve magnifications of around 300X (or prefably close to 400X) for close up observation of deep sky objects. That's why I was thinking of getting the 3X barlow. ie I wanted to broaden my magnification range.

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Hello Ralf, I think Tal's are fine but not the best. For quality I use Televue x3 about £80. Not a fortune but a Tal may save you some but not worth it if you want quality. Celestron Ultima x2 (£90) is even better as it is an APO and with a 2" long extension will work near to 3x and would be my recommendation. If you are a new astronomer and want something to get you by and have major buget constraints the Tal will be fine. John.

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I would get a new e/p and not try to barlow what is basically not a very good e/p in the first place. Also, 3-400x in a dob is a lot of work just keeping the object in the FOV. My own humble opinion is that dobs start to be a real PITA above about 150-200x. Also, for most DSos you want low mag not high mag, no?

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Hi Ralf.

Brianb was correct you do have a "hole" in your eyepice repertoire which would be filled by an eypiece in the mid-teens.

You also have a fast scope there so will benefit by having good barlows. I have a x2 and a x3 Televue barlows. Both I can wholeheartedly recommend.

Clear skies.

Dave.

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Thank you very much for the advice.

If I were to buy an eyepiece that would give a higher power than those already included but still have at least the same quality as them what would you recommend? I'm not sure aout the 3X televeu. It seems pointless to buy a barlow that is of a much higher quality than the eyepieces (i.e. the Skywatcher ones).

Edited by Ralf

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Re Barlows for fast f ratio's - The Klee Barlow was specifically designed for fast Newts, they come in x2.2 and x2.8.

I use the x2.8 on the ED80 for solar imaging and it works great!!

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Another point which I mentioned but did not emphasize in my original post: I have a X2 Meade barlow that was included in a Meade 114mm reflector. Quality wise I am thinkng its the equivalent of the already included Skywatcher eyepieces (ie not the best, but quite good nevertheless). However, is there any reason why it might not be ideal for an F/4.7 telescope? Do you recommend that I replace that as well?

Thanks again.

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Ralf, I ordered the very same 3x barlow from FLO about a month ago. Arrived in super quick time. The views I have through it are STUNNING - particularly of Saturn - cassini division, obvious surface banding, everything you would expect from higher mag really. It has also been handy for splitting doubles -a really satisfying experience :cool:

I'd go for it.

Amanda

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Despite what others have said here, the Tal Barlows are generally considered to be excellent, especially for the price.

Forget the expensive Barlow's mentioned, get the Tal and be glad of the savings!

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I agree that the TAL barlows are very good quality for the price you pay. You will hardly ever use 300x or 400x though and if you do it would be on double stars or the planets under exceptional conditions, not DSO's which are usually best viewed at low to medium magnificiation.

John

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Hello "Ralf."

I have the TAL 3x Barlow (bought from FLO a couple of weeks ago). I also have a Celestron "Ultima" 2x Barlow.

Tried them both out this morning (viewing Jupiter), on my Celestron f10 C8 SCT, and my Orion Optics f4.5 8" Newtonian.

As both Barlows are different powers, I find it quite difficult to give an accurate evaluation - as to which one is best. Both worked well using a variety of eyepieces. (the TAL 3x caused a lot of "vignetting" when used with a 40mm eyepiece on my 8" SCT. Same combination on the f4.5 Newt was OK).

On the whole though, I would say that the Celeston gives the clearest views when used with any eyepiece (10mm, 25mm and 40mm) on both scopes. I think this is more to do with the fact that the Ultima is a 2x Barlow. To make a more valid test between a TAL Barlow and an Ultima, one would have to have a 2x TAL.

II haven't tried the TAL 3x Barlow on the Moon yet.

I would agree with everyone else in saying that the TAL 3x Barlow is very good value for the money.

However, (as one or two others have said), it may be better to consider buying another "decent" eyepiece for your scope, rather than a Barlow.

Best wishes,

philsail1

P.S. If you would like to try a TAL 3x Barlow, I could loan you mine for a few weeks.

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