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Medium size scopes

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Old Thursday 5th December 2019, 11:55   #1
Steve Lister
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Medium size scopes

I am looking to buy a reasonable quality, but not too expensive, telescope for taking on foreign trips that will fit comfortably in hand baggage. I don't want a mini scope type.

Something like the size of the old Nikon Fieldscope - I have a rather battered old one but it needs a new eyepiece that may not be available.

Any recommendations?

Steve
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Old Thursday 5th December 2019, 15:21   #2
jring
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Hi,

if you got an old 60mm fieldscope in working order, I would certainly try to get a nice wide angle fixed EP for that - they do still come up from time to time. If 24x is ok for you, in focus has a used 24x/60x...

Joachim
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Old Thursday 5th December 2019, 18:33   #3
Steve Lister
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Thanks for the suggestion Joachim. I have been trying to use a 30xWA eyepiece on it but it does not really work well on a 60mm objective. I have two zooms, but one is jammed after a bad knock and the other has moisture inside ! I really need a zoom I think, either for my Nikon or on whatever else I find.

Steve
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Old Thursday 5th December 2019, 22:16   #4
Alexis Powell
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Given the eyepieces you've mentioned, you must have a Fieldscope II or III. If you have the ED version (of either), I'd say you already have an excellent scope. If you have the non-ED, you will get a sharper/cleaner view by getting something that is ED, including a Fieldscope II ED or III ED. Those come up on eBay regularly. I bought one straight and one angled in the past year, both in pristine condition, each including an eyepiece and each for ~$250. I can't imagine a better choice apart from something much newer and much much much more expensive.

What kind of performance gain are you looking for as compared to the Nikon that you already have? You say that your 30x wide angle eyepiece is not working for you (Incidentally, which version do you have, the WF or the MC?), which surprises me--it should work beautifully. Nevertheless, if you want a brighter view, I'd step down to a 24x WF or MC or DS eyepiece (all of which have the same FOV but differ in bulk) or even to the 20x MC (which has the same FOV as the 24x eyepieces). Another option, if you don't mind the narrow FOV, is the 20-60x zoom, which is still available new. It is just as bright as, or is even brighter than, the fixed eyepieces.

--AP
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Old Friday 6th December 2019, 08:06   #5
jring
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Hi,

I'm also a bit astonished that a 30 wide didn't work well on a 60mm fieldscope - what was the problem with the view? It should have been great even on a non ED body (unless either body or EP had a problem).

As for the zooms - the Nikon zooms are unfortunately rather narrow (but very sharp). Also they might be as bright or brighter than the fixed EPs (which would mean the fixed EPs have quite a bit older coatings considering the number of surfaces in a zoom) but only at comparable magnification. At 60x on a 60mm body the zoom will be only good in bright sunshine - not so much in the shadow or on grey autumn day.

Did you try to put your fogged zoom in a container with silica gel and in a warm place for some time? The jammed one might also be repairable by a pro as long as the glass is not damaged...

Joachim, whose 60mm Kowa is brilliant with a 30 wide
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Old Friday 6th December 2019, 10:49   #6
Steve Lister
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Thanks both of you.

Alexis, yes my old scope is a Fieldscope II EDA. Well battered (the end of it looks like I have used it for hammering in nails) and the stay-on case is falling apart but otherwise fine. Just the eyepiece that is the problem so that is the way I should probably go.

Steve
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Old Friday 6th December 2019, 17:19   #7
jring
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Hi,

since you have an ED body, I would certainly keep it - it doesn't get much better at that size. I have been tempted by some offers of FS II or III ED and only resisted and got a Kowa 613 since I had other Kowa glass and EPs.

If you didn't like the 30 wide (why?), you might want to try the 24x/30x wide at in-focus... that is, if you wanted a brighter and even wider view than with the 30 wide.

You certainly should try to dry out / get fixed your zoom EPs..

Joachim
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Old Friday 6th December 2019, 18:24   #8
jkingrph
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I recently got a Kowa TSN 664, for the straight through view, which I find quicker than an angled view. I have a TSN 882sv which is much larger, so I consider the 664 more a med size, which I find hander to keep set up in a corner so I can grab it and take it outside quickly.
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Old Friday 6th December 2019, 23:44   #9
Alexis Powell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Lister View Post
Thanks both of you.

Alexis, yes my old scope is a Fieldscope II EDA. Well battered (the end of it looks like I have used it for hammering in nails) and the stay-on case is falling apart but otherwise fine. Just the eyepiece that is the problem so that is the way I should probably go.

Steve
That's a great scope. It isn't the most compact 60 mm (due to its oversized prism assembly), but otherwise should be a superb 60 mm scope.

Several of us are still wondering what's not working for you about your 30x wide-angle eyepiece. Tell us more. It should be really easy to see through (good eye relief and big field of view) and be a great overall magnification. Because you said it doesn't work given the 60 mm, we assume that you are saying that the view is too dim in low light. Most users find a 2 mm exit pupil (such as you have) quite good in most birding conditions. Given the condition of your other eyepieces, perhaps something is wrong with it (or with your scope). I'd give it a close examination.

--AP
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Old Monday 9th December 2019, 19:51   #10
Hermann
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jring View Post
If you didn't like the 30 wide (why?), you might want to try the 24x/30x wide at in-focus... that is, if you wanted a brighter and even wider view than with the 30 wide.
That's what I'd suggest as well. I find 30x usually too much, especially when I'm not at the coast or a lake. The depth of field is just too small for my liking at 30x. All the different varieties of the 24/30 (I've got all three of them) are pretty good, very sharp and contrasty and, due to the larger exit pupil, very comfortable in use.

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