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Celestron EP kits - are they any good


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Hi all

was after some advice

Recently got my first scope (Skywatcher Explorer 130PM) and it came with both a 10 and 25mm EP (+ a x2 Barlow)

Have been thinking about expanding my EP selection as well as some filters and was wondering if this kit was any good (seen it on the FLO site, Amazon and ebay)

Eyepiece Sets - Celestron Eyeopener Eyepiece and Filter Kit

i like the look of the range of EPs and filters but am not sure if this kit fits the bill for my scope.

Are the EPs worth the cost and has anyone got one or used one before

Cheers for any comments

Stick

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The eyepeices in this set are low/medium quality and no better than the ones you already have. For the money you would be better of buying two (or three) good quality eyepieces. You don't need that many and the filters are of questionable value and the fancy box unnecessary. Eyepieces are a good forward investment. You may upgrade your scope at some point (maybe several times) but a descent eyepiece is a keeper for ever.

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I'm told the similar Revelation kit is slightly better, but I was waved off buying a kit like that at all for the reasons mentioned above.

Several people on here have started off with one of these kits and been pleased because you get a lot of options for your money... but if interest in the hobby is maintained then peeps seem to upgrade when funds allow. Might be worth seeing if you can get a kit second hand but otherwise might be better spending the money investing in a couple of higher quality EPs.

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Ah, but which decent, high quality, eyepieces should Stick go and buy? So many options :)

Although these kits may not be the very highest quality I do think they offer a good spread of eyepieces. Sort of a baseline of options to build on. All well and good to spend a lot of money on one high quality eyepiece, but that won't be the right piece of glass for every occasion. The kits give a range of options. Once Stick finds the focal lengths he/she uses the most then he/she will be able to make an informed choice on their next, higher quality, eyepiece.

In time the kit will most likley be overtaken by a collection of better eyepieces, but they'll always have a use, for kids/friends/outreach etc...

Just my 2p B)

And to answer Stick's question - I've not used the Celestron kit but I do have a number of eyepieces from the Revelation kit and they are very good. Easily on a par with Meade 4000 plossls, and I've read other opinions favourably comparing them to Televue plossls, which will no doubt be suggested soon.

Edited by twotter
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I have the Celestron kit and I am very happy with it. The eyepieces are alot better made and coated compared with the 25 and 10mm that came with my ST120.

The case also comes in very useful as iI have to travel to a dark site.

The only gripe I have is that the eye relief on the 4 and 6mm EPs is pretty short.

Sorted this by buying a TMB planetary (which also fits in the case).

I'm sure I will eventually upgrade but I'll need to compare the performance of other EPs first.

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thanks for the replies one and all

just to confirm Twotter...im a HE !!!!

now im even more confused (about the EPS not my gender!!!)

a few extra qs for you

1) what are TMB clones ?

2) are the BST explorers better than the EPs in the kits (either the celestron or revalation) ?

3) Whats a TMB planetary ?

4) I wear glasses so would the eye relief an any of these be ok with specs ?

5) would i be better off with some of the celestron x-cel EPs as they appear to have large eye relief link for these is Celestron - Celestron X-Cel Series eyepiece

thanks for any more advice

cheers

Stick

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While we are on the subject of EP kits, what are peoples takes on the Meade 4000 series kit?

It has a nice range of options for my scope and a good couple of wide field EPs, but they are just plossls. Would it be better to get 1 or 2 hyperions instead?

oh yeah the Meade kit is about £230 ish

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Stick, I don't wear glasses and I'm not sure you need to when using a telescope. except if you have astigmatism.

The eye relief on short focal length Plossls can be less than 5mm so your eyeball is pressed right up to the lens if you want a decent field of view.

There are two ways around this

1) get a "planetary" eyepiece which has 16-20mm eyerelief

2) use a longer focal length Plossl with a Barlow, which increases the magification by whatever factor it is rated and preserves the longer eyerelief of the longer focal length Plossl .

I prefer to use eyepieces without a Barlow, but others my differ.

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Hi,

Just to say that I have this kit, from Amazon.

Other than a slight confusion where the EP received did not match the description I am very happy with it. Here is a link to my first thread on the subject.

http://stargazerslounge.com/beginners-help-advice/127253-advice-wanted-eyepieces-celestron-eye-piece-filter-kit.html

For me, this kit was more of a learning experience, to understand which EP were good for what. So far my experience has been that the 32mm gets the most use trying to locate targets. Followed by the 13m once I have found it.

The 17mm and 8 get used, but less often. The 6mm even less as it starts to push the limit of the scope and is hard to focus.

The moon filter is used quite a bit. The coloured filters have so far just been used to create coloured moon photos - holding compact camera to EP - but I guess I could have just recoloured the image in an art package.

Just my 2p worth

dag123

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cheers guys

Donkeiller... id need my glasses even with the scope as i do have astigmatism

Dag123, thanks for the info. I read your post and gave me even more food for thought !

You are right the Amazon set has the "new" range of EPS but the FLO site states the old set are supplied....:):confused:B)

Getting mixed reports on the kits and still no wiser as to what to do !

Can anyone explain what a "planetary" EP is please (newbie thicko I'm afraid!)

starting to lean toward a couple of the celestron x-cel EPs as they appear to have large eye relief but they are £60 each so will be limited to maybe only 1 or 2 (as cash allows)

anyone got any views on these ?

thanks again for all the help

much appreciated

Stick

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morning stick

i was deciding what kit to get the celestron/revelation and opted for the revelation. for no real reason

the ep's imo are of much better quality than the ones that come with the scope and im guessing the celestron will be about the same

but as stated above "this kit was more of a learning experience, to understand which EP were good for what"

is the reason i bought the kit i think the kits celestron/revelation will be good enough for a few years viewing (maybe longer with our clouds)

just my tuppence worth

star

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thanks for the replies one and all

just to confirm Twotter...im a HE !!!!

now im even more confused (about the EPS not my gender!!!)

a few extra qs for you

1) what are TMB clones ?

2) are the BST explorers better than the EPs in the kits (either the celestron or revalation) ?

3) Whats a TMB planetary ?

4) I wear glasses so would the eye relief an any of these be ok with specs ?

5) would i be better off with some of the celestron x-cel EPs as they appear to have large eye relief link for these is Celestron - Celestron X-Cel Series eyepiece

thanks for any more advice

cheers

Stick

Hi Stick

Both the TMB clone and BST have good eye relief and it's lucky you mentioned you were glasses as the Celestron kit would be a waste of money. The 4 & 6 mm have tiny lenses with small ER so would be almost useless for spectacle wearers. Regards the X-CEL EP's I would avoid at all cost as for half the money the TMB clones offer so much more but that is my personal opinion others may disagree. Sky's the limit offer a try before you by so you can't go far wrong. Ring or email Alan and he will send you the selection you want. Give them a go and if it works out you keep them and if not you return them.... simplz :)

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thanks spaceboy

given me a bit more of an idea

several people have mentioned the TMB clones

I assume TMB is the make as some sites mention "TMB designed"

Is this what you mean by "clones"

i take your point about the x-cels....could save me a lot of cash and mean i can get another EP !

still a bit confused about the "planetary" EPs...does this mean they are only any use for viewing planets ?

sorry to be so dense !

cheers

stick

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No Probs Stick glad to offer advice :icon_eek:

The "planetary" thing is a plug I think? Maybe a suggestion that they are good for high power observing. I read a post some where on the internet that discussed the reasoning behind this label but I forget what it said. Either way they are superb for all objects.

As for the "clone" part it is best not discussing as there is talk of some upset chappies in the U.S regarding this matter. It basically means they are a some what legitimate copy of a well respected eye piece design by Thomas Burgess. I have owned a couple and found them for the money outstanding. They may not be to everyones taste but they do offer some comfortable views with great detail. I have also owned an X-CEL and found the eye piece an absolute nightmare to get on with.

I have not owned a BST but others that have owned both say there is no difference between them and the TMB clones regards views but the BST's have the advantage of a 60' FOV for only a £2 more.

Say you have a budget of £125 you could get a 4mm for high power 162x a 8mm for med/ high 81x and a 15mm for med/ low 43x. I assume you have the standard 25mm which came with the scope which is fairly good and that will fill the low power 26x. You can barlow the EP's to give you top end power for planetary work. A good barlow upgrade is either a TV or celestron Ultima. If these are a little lavish for the budget then some have suggested the Tal barlow is good for a budget.

Hope this helps but as mentioned before, if you have doubt it doesn't hurt to try before you by at sky's the limit.

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I bought the Revelation kit from FLO and have been very happy with it, but mostly because it's given me a range of EPs to try whilst I get some experience and learn to understand what suits me when and why. They'll get replaced in time with high quality ones, but only once I have decided what I really want based on personal experience. From that point of view I think they're excellent.

Completely agree regarding the lack of eye-relief with the short focal length Celestron lenses, too. I have a couple of those and you almost have to climb inside the 4mm to see anything.

(I don't wear glasses, so what works for me may not be suitable for you if you do.)

James

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Hi there, i have the Celestron kit, bought cheaper on Ebay,it's a good starter kit, but I don't use colour filters, also there are better Moon filters out there. I have settled on the SW LET ep's as these offer good eye relief and a good FOV, though I have read scouring critcism of these, I am not a spectacle wearer but find wide field and good eye relief offers comfortable viewing, that's my thoughts anyway

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cheers all

i think I'm moving away from the idea of the kits after lots of mixed reviews

Also think the general consensus on the eye relief of the 4 / 6mm EPs may be an issue with me specs !

gonna start looking at maybe the BSTs or the TMBs

thanks for all the advice

Stick

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hi all

just thought id let you know that after all your advice i ordered 2 new EPs today from Sky's the Limit

Alan (guy who runs it) is a great bloke and gave me loads of advice based on my scope and what i was looking to do. He even talked me out of buying some dearer stuff that wasn't gonna be any use so fair play (makes a change for a company to think of its customers first !!)

Anyway, eventually settled on a 5mm and a 15mm BST Explorer ED. Looking forward to getting them and trying them out now.

Thanks again for all the tips

Stick

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hi Spaceboy

had two good nights here so have tried the new EPs out

blimey...what a difference !

they are sooooooo much brighter and clearer than my stock eps

Thanks again for the heads up about the kits / BSTs / Alan and Sky's the limit mate

You've done me a good turn there

clear Sky's for ever !

Stick

:D:headbang::rolleyes:

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