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Old Sunday 20th March 2016, 00:40   #1
Oscar56
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Your Favourite 3 EPs for PF80ED?

I started a thread yesterday regarding the Baader Hyperion zoom. In that thread a couple of posters mentioned some of their favourite EPs other than the zoom so I thought I would start a new thread.

What are your favourite 3 EPs with the PF80ED and under what situations do you use each?
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Old Sunday 20th March 2016, 08:08   #2
LesR
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I now only have the straight Pentax PF 65 EDII, after selling my angled Celestron Regal 80F-ED because of a reoccuring neck problem which angled scopes agrivate, but the 3 most used EP's on both scopes are/were the Baader Hyperion 17mm, the Pentax XW14 and the Baader Morpheus 12.5.
On the 65 I use the 17mm on a monopod when I also have my SLC 8x42 binoculars and camera with me, the 14 and 12.5 get used for general viewing on a tripod. Since getting the Morpheus 12.5, with its excellent 76 degree immersive wide angle view, it seems you just walk into the view. I find I am using it more than the XW14 without losing any brightness, contast or sharpness. I think the Morpheus are excellent value for money
I also use the 10mm Baader Hyperion for occasional sea watching, but is not as bright as the 12.5 and 14mm.
When I can find a good used 80mm Pentax the 3 favourites will get used on that too.
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Old Sunday 20th March 2016, 16:14   #3
giosblue
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I'm new to the Pentax scopes, but I'm liking what I'm seeing, At the moment I have two Opticron eps. A BST 12mm, a Baader zoom, Morpheus 14mm and a Morpheus 9mm.
The Opticron eps gives me 18x and 25x on the 65mm Pentax and 23x and 32x on the 80mm Pentax. Both of these are really sharp and contrasty and they are compact compared to the Baaders. The downside is they don't have as wide of fov. The 12mm BST was a budget buy off e-bay, 49. Lots of people on the forum rate this ep and I can see why. It's excellent, has a wider fov than the Opticrons, but not as wide as the Baader's
This gives me, 32.5x on the 65mm and 42x on the 80mm. From my limited experience I would think a 12mm is about as low has you want to go. You could push it with a 10mm and get 39x and 50x and in good light it would be acceptable. The Baader Morpheus 14mm is a cracker on both scopes, I get 28x on the 65mm and 36x on the 80mm. Pin sharp and a truly immersive view. The 9mm is probably going back, its too much for the 65mm @ 43x It's much better on the 80mm @ about 57x, it's pushing it though. I would rather have the clarity before the higher mag.

BTW, Both my scope are the straight versions.

Which are my favourite three? at the moment I'm still playing around (and enjoying it) The 14mm Morpheus is the clear winner so far. I'll let you know the other two when I've had more time.

Last edited by giosblue : Sunday 20th March 2016 at 16:18.
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Old Saturday 26th March 2016, 11:12   #4
giosblue
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Well, for those that are interested, an update on the Baader Morpheus EPs. Had a couple of hours at my local nature reserve yesterday. It was bright and sunny, so no problems with the light.
I took the Baader Zoom, Pentax 12mm and the Opticron EPs to compare the with the Morpheus. The Morpheus are very sharp and contrasty, with a huge FoV. Hower the have a distinct yellow cast, which seems to help with the contrast, but it also adds a false brightness. If you didn't do a direct comparison you might not notice it so much.
Anyway, I much prefer the cooler look of the Pentax and the Opticron, in fact the Pentax, Opticron and the Baader Zoom were pretty much the same in this regard.
So the Morpheus have been relegated to going back, and also the eyecups are a waste of time.
It's the first time I've had time to try them really.
The PF80 scope is excellent, can't fault it. especially for the price.
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Old Sunday 27th March 2016, 16:53   #5
Oscar56
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I have now had 3 opportunities to test eyepieces, once in my backyard and twice in the field. Time for my summary.

I have a number of eyepieces for astronomical use, that was the reason for purchasing the Pentax80 in the first place with its ability to accept 1.25" EPs. For the time being I will be carrying the following in my bag with my scope:

- Explore Scientific 68 degree - 20mm focal length
- ES 68D - 20mm with threaded barlow attachment for 15mm focal length
- ES 82D - 8.8mm
- ES 82D - 6.7mm. light fall off is starting to get noticeable. More testing required.

`````````````````````````````````````````````````` ````
At home I tested almost all of my 1.25" EPs. Here is what I found:

- GSO 32mm Plossl. This is not fully coated so shows a green cast around the perimeter of the view. Not noticeable during star gazing but very much so during daylight.
- GSO 15mm Plossl. As above
- RKE 28mm. This is a fun EP because of the apparent "floating" of the subject but too easy to see the kidney bean blackouts.
- Denkmeir 21mm LOA - a specialty EP usually twinned in a binoviewer for astronomy purposes. Although quite light not as comfortable as my Explore Scientific EPs
- Orion 25mm and 10mm Plossls. These came with my original telescope purchase. I did not even try these.

- Baader zoom. Definitely convenient but with convenience comes trade offs. True field of view is narrow and views are dark compared to the Explore Scientific EPs.

Once I whittled down to the ES EPs I swapped from one EP to another to determine the convenience or inconvenience of using fixed focal length EPs in the Pentax. I found it not to be a real handicap. When sitting at a telescope at night it is a little more cumbersome since you are trying to work in the dark but by appropriate utilization of small pockets in my back pack I could smoothly swap from one EP to the next without losing my target.

The ES EPs are also close to par focal meaning that there is minimal refocusing when changing EP focal lengths. These EPs are bright and clean to the edge of view, something that is not as evident during stargazing. They are also very difficult to create kidney bean blackouts with and are argon/nitrogen purged just like the Pentax scope. So in theory they are also waterproof.

For the purposes of binoviewing for astronomy I have collected double EPs including two copies of ES82-20mm and ES82-8.8mm. I also have a 2X GSO barlow which has a threaded bottom lens. Threading that lens into the bottom of one of my ES82-20mm converts it to approximately 15mm. That now gives me 20mm, 15mm, 8.8mm and 6.7mm to utilize.

I need a few more tests including longer hikes with this equipment and my Manfrotto 055 tripod to determine if this will be my kit.

grant
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Old Monday 28th March 2016, 17:35   #6
giosblue
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For the time being I'm keeping both the Opticrons. This gives me a 25x and 35x on the PF80 and I'm also keeping the Pentax XF12, this gives me a 42x. So I have 25x 35x and 42x. I also have the Baader zoom .
When I get the chance I'm going to try the Pentax XW20mm and XW14mm and compare them to the two Opticrons. If they are better, I'll buy them and sell the Opticrons.

I have 30 days to try the Baader Morpheus 14mm. If I can, I'm going to get a xw14 and do a direct comparison.
The Baader does have a really wide FoV, although there is a fair bit of distortion at the edges.
You don't really notice it unless you are looking at the vertical though. The XW has a 70deg vs the Baader 76deg.

Last edited by giosblue : Monday 28th March 2016 at 19:00.
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Old Friday 1st April 2016, 11:52   #7
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Ok. no one has the Pentax XW14 in stock (at the right price) However, I'm trying out a Tele Vue Delos 14mm and it is outstanding. The clarity is amazing, it is just so clear, it's like you've wiped the mist off a window.
The downside is the size, it's big and the price 300. I'm sending the 9mm and 14mm Morpheus EPs back, this will cover the cost of the Delos. Unfortunately Tele Vue don't do a 20mm, so I'm going to get a XW20.
That should complete my line up.
Delos 14mm 36x and 28x
Pentax XW20mm 25x and 20x
Pentax XF12mm 42x and 32x
This will cover all my birding needs on both the 65mm and the 80mm Pentax scopes.
Anyone who has read my posts since joining this form will know I've tried a few scopes over the last three months in the comfort of my own home.
Opticron HR80ED SDL v2 Zoom and fixed
Opticron ES80ED with HDF zoom and fixed
Kowa 883 20x60 Zoom
Hawke 80mm 20x60 zoom.
The Pentax with the Delos knocks everything into a cocked hat apart from the Kowa. Even that is a close run.
Controversial I know, but I think the Delos on the Pentax at 36x is equal to the Kowa at 36 on the zoom.
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Old Saturday 2nd April 2016, 17:22   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giosblue View Post
.... I'm trying out a Tele Vue Delos 14mm and it is outstanding. The clarity is amazing, it is just so clear, it's like you've wiped the mist off a window.
...
Is that comparing directly to the Baader Morpheus 14mm?
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Old Saturday 2nd April 2016, 19:42   #9
giosblue
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRodrigues View Post
Is that comparing directly to the Baader Morpheus 14mm?
Yes, that's correct, the Baader's fine until you look through something better.
If you use the Baader for a while you don't notice it until you switch to the Delos. It's hard to describe, I don't think it's because the Delos is sharper than the Baader or there is much difference in contrast. The Baader has slight yellow cast and Delos and the other EPs don't. The Delos seems neutral and clear, that's what you seem to pay the extra for.

Downsides to the Delos are, I don't think it will focus to true infinity and I don't think it's weather proof, I'll have to check.
I've just got back from my local patch with Pentax the scope and I have to say, it's a cracker. I got a close up on a Grey Heron and it was stunning.

I may end up getting the XW14 and XW20 and the XF12. I don't go looking for wet weather, but it's not easy to avoid it in the N/West UK. So weather proofing will probably play a part in my final choice.
We'll see.
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Old Tuesday 19th April 2016, 18:19   #10
billb9430
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Originally Posted by giosblue View Post
Yes, that's correct, the Baader's fine until you look through something better.
If you use the Baader for a while you don't notice it until you switch to the Delos. It's hard to describe, I don't think it's because the Delos is sharper than the Baader or there is much difference in contrast. The Baader has slight yellow cast and Delos and the other EPs don't. The Delos seems neutral and clear, that's what you seem to pay the extra for.

Downsides to the Delos are, I don't think it will focus to true infinity and I don't think it's weather proof, I'll have to check.
I've just got back from my local patch with Pentax the scope and I have to say, it's a cracker. I got a close up on a Grey Heron and it was stunning.

I may end up getting the XW14 and XW20 and the XF12. I don't go looking for wet weather, but it's not easy to avoid it in the N/West UK. So weather proofing will probably play a part in my final choice.
We'll see.
I use the Pentax XW and older XL eyepieces, but bought a 17.3 mm Delos when they were on sale to "fill in" between the 14 and 20 mm XW's. Mine WILL come to infinity focus in the PF80EDa, but just barely. Nearsighted users won't be able to focus "in" a little and so use the scope without their glasses with the 17.3 Delos. I've read that the Delos line is not completely parfocal, with the 17.3 requiring more "in" focusing and so other focal lengths of Deloi may not have this problem when used with the PF80EDa. Though the Delos has a slightly wider Afov than the XWs (72˚ vs. 70˚) I notice a slight reddish tint near the Delos field stop if the eye is not exactly at the optimum position. This is minor - not nearly so much as is seen with the ES 30/82˚ in astro scopes during daytime use. I find XW's are much more forgiving on eye placement and do not have this reddish tint at the field edge. I think this is not surprising, since Tele Vue eyepieces are optimized for astronomy use while the XL and XW series were developed for use with Pentax spotters. -Bill
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Old Tuesday 26th April 2016, 19:33   #11
giosblue
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Ok then here's my answer. If you can afford it the Pentax XW Eps would be my first choice. The XF Ep's are very good, but they only do two, 8.5mm and a 12mm. I haven't tried the Pentax zoom, some say it's brilliant, others are not so keen. At the moment I'm using a Baader zoom, which is fine, not as good as the fixed, but good enough to enjoy your birding. The XW20 gives a superb view, in both the 65mm and the 80mm scope. Next up is the Opticron HDF 40809, this gives me about 32x, it's not as good as the XW20, it's still very good, you don't feel like you are missing out on anything. Last up the Pentax XF12mm, a really nice little lens, seems to have about the same FoV as the Opticron, again gives a really nice view. I also have a 12mm BST, this is also excellent, at first I couldn't the difference between this and the XF12mm. However the Pentax stays sharp almost to the very edge and the BST doesn't. The BST loses sharpness quickly once you move away from the center. Having said that, I didn't notice it until I looked for it, and in the sweet spot it's just as good as the Pentax XF12mm. Personally I don't think you can go far wrong with any Ep in these Pentax scopes. If you want to push the boat out you can get some really wide FoV eps. Or if you're not to brothered about edge sharpness, the cheaper Eps are very good. For me, I think I will replace the Opticron for the Pentax XW14 and just have a XW20, XW14, XF12 and the Baader zoom.

Last edited by giosblue : Tuesday 26th April 2016 at 19:36.
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Old Friday 29th April 2016, 15:30   #12
Oscar56
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Explore Scientific has had an eyepiece sale for the entire month of April. It was tough to resist so I put in an order to add to my astronomical EPs. When they arrive I will test the ES 68D - 24mm and ES 82D 14mm in my spotting scope.
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