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ED50 20x or 27x DS question

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Old Monday 17th September 2018, 05:19   #1
marcsantacurz
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ED50 20x or 27x DS question

I'm looking for a lightweight scope, and I think it's down to the ED50 or Opticron MM4 60mm (which is about 2x as heavy). So I'm trying to nail down all the details.

I see in this forum some people saying the 20x or 27x fixed eyepiece is very nice. But all I can find is the DS versions of those, which look like they are for digiscoping so have no eyecup. Do people use those for viewing? Without an eyecup or is there a way to improvise one or a 3rd party?

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Old Monday 17th September 2018, 09:09   #2
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They're discontinued from what I understand now, only the zoom available. You may be fortunate to pick one up second hand.......they were the coded MC Ii fixed eyepiece.
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Old Monday 17th September 2018, 09:48   #3
Andrew Whitehouse
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I use a 27x DS eyepiece myself and find it perfectly fine for viewing.
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Old Monday 17th September 2018, 18:11   #4
marcsantacurz
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Originally Posted by Andrew Whitehouse View Post
I use a 27x DS eyepiece myself and find it perfectly fine for viewing.
Ok, thank you. From the photos on Amazon they look like without an eyecup, but I've seen other photos with an eyecup, so looks good!
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Old Monday 17th September 2018, 18:28   #5
Andrew Whitehouse
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Originally Posted by marcsantacurz View Post
Ok, thank you. From the photos on Amazon they look like without an eyecup, but I've seen other photos with an eyecup, so looks good!
The DS doesn't have an eyecup, but personally I've never had a problem with that.
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Old Tuesday 18th September 2018, 00:19   #6
Alexis Powell
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Ok, thank you. From the photos on Amazon they look like without an eyecup, but I've seen other photos with an eyecup, so looks good!
The DS eyepieces lack an extended eyecup, just a rubber cover over the housing when not using a camera adapter. I use it without an eyecup because I wear glasses. You could buy a generic eyecup or make one from bicycle innertube.

--AP
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Old Tuesday 18th September 2018, 00:40   #7
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I just purchased a 50ED scope and some adapter rings from Billb9430 (member here). His 1.25" adapter rings and his recommendation for the 20mm eyepiece were spot-on. I'm still amazed at how small and light that scope is, and how spectacular the view is with that 20mm eyepiece. I also bought a 15mm eyepiece to give me roughly 19x, and it's a fine combination. However the amount of detail and light I get with that scope and the 20mm eyepiece has me wondering now if I'll ever use the 15.

I plan to give them a good workout over the next few days in all sorts of lighting and atmospheric conditions, but I bought this little scope for both birding and glassing elk in the mountains, and I think it's going to be fantastic for both jobs.

I still cannot get over how light and small it is.

More to come!
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Old Monday 24th September 2018, 23:56   #8
mayoayo
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The 20 mm is about 14x ,i reccomend a bst Explorer ,adaptable with right ring,for a perfect 23,5x and the flat field bst 16mm for an also very useful 17x...For only one eyepiece,and addressing your original question,20x or 27x, I think i prefer brightness and FOV(and a more steady image!) versus the extra magnification,so your 15mm /19x would be an excellent choice .By the way..what astro eyepiece models are you going to use?

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Old Sunday 4th November 2018, 15:33   #9
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How is the 40x eyepiece in the tiny ED50? Too much mag.?? Contrast and luminosity ?
Thanks.
Wachi.
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Old Sunday 4th November 2018, 16:06   #10
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How is the 40x eyepiece in the tiny ED50? Too much mag.?? Contrast and luminosity ?
Thanks.
Wachi.
Regarding DS eyepieces...
The 30X eyepiece delivers 16X on the ED50.
The 50X eyepiece delivers 27X on the ED50.
The 75X eyepiece delivers 40X on the ED50.

The 25-75 zoom delivers 13-40 on the ED50

We have all the above lenses. Here's my take.

We have two ED50's, one of which is better than the other. I discovered this using the zoom. At high magnification, on a very detailed target (bark around a woodpecker hole), I noticed a slight difference between the two scopes. The better scope is pin sharp all the way through the zoom range. The FOV, however, can be narrow and confining to some viewers. Conclusion: the zoom works and you will get good ID's at 40X. Note: Eye relief is limited on the zoom but, again, it's a superb lens if you can adapt. When necessary, I remove my eyeglasses.

The 30X (delivers 16X on the ED50) is absolutely suberb. The low magnification has its limitations but the clarity of the image makes this my favorite.

The 50X (delivers 27X on the ED50) is OK but I think it pushes the ED50 beyond its design. People use it and love it but it's not my favorite.

The 75X (delivers 40X on the ED50) is, in my opinion, a complete non-starter. It's too dark. It's also a pain to locate a target using this lens. The clear alternative for someone who wants the extra reach of 40X is to go with the 25-75X zoom (13-40X on the ED50).

Hope this helps...
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Old Monday 5th November 2018, 15:47   #11
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Thanks Pileatus!
Regards,
Wachi.
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Old Tuesday 6th November 2018, 14:08   #12
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Originally Posted by Pileatus View Post
Regarding DS eyepieces...
The 30X eyepiece delivers 16X on the ED50.
The 50X eyepiece delivers 27X on the ED50.
The 75X eyepiece delivers 40X on the ED50.

The 25-75 zoom delivers 13-40 on the ED50

We have all the above lenses. Here's my take.

We have two ED50's, one of which is better than the other. I discovered this using the zoom. At high magnification, on a very detailed target (bark around a woodpecker hole), I noticed a slight difference between the two scopes. The better scope is pin sharp all the way through the zoom range. The FOV, however, can be narrow and confining to some viewers. Conclusion: the zoom works and you will get good ID's at 40X. Note: Eye relief is limited on the zoom but, again, it's a superb lens if you can adapt. When necessary, I remove my eyeglasses.

The 30X (delivers 16X on the ED50) is absolutely suberb. The low magnification has its limitations but the clarity of the image makes this my favorite.

The 50X (delivers 27X on the ED50) is OK but I think it pushes the ED50 beyond its design. People use it and love it but it's not my favorite.

The 75X (delivers 40X on the ED50) is, in my opinion, a complete non-starter. It's too dark. It's also a pain to locate a target using this lens. The clear alternative for someone who wants the extra reach of 40X is to go with the 25-75X zoom (13-40X on the ED50).

Hope this helps...
Good stuff!....but I often wonder, if Im just going to have a 16x spotter scope, am I better off getting 16x binoculars
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Old Thursday 8th November 2018, 22:19   #13
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Good stuff!....but I often wonder, if Im just going to have a 16x spotter scope, am I better off getting 16x binoculars
That's why I like the better Nikon zoom, mentioned above. As mentioned above it is 13-40x on the ED50 scope. It is #7467, in the Nikon offerings.
The fieldscope eyepieces are still around, some new, and on the used market.

The ED50 is a very good scope, but you have a good point about a 15X
or stronger binocular. I have several, and you can get good results with
the Nikon Monarch 5 16x56, and even better would be something like the
Zeiss Conquest 15x56 or one of the Swarovski 15x56 models.

The advantage of the big binocular is the ease of view using both eyes,
it is a nice way to view. The 15x needs to be tripod mounted, but you can
use it handheld for short views.

Jerry
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Old Thursday 8th November 2018, 23:52   #14
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I think the magnification should be chosen according to what you need the scope to do. For me, 16x or the 13-40x zoom with the 50ED would make no sense because when I reach for a scope, I want a wide-angle 30x view to complement my 8 or 8.5x bins. I find that the 50ED handles 27x WF perfectly well, making it a viable direct substitute for my 82ED with 30x WF or DS. Lower mags would make the 50ED into a different tool that I never reach for. The zoom eyepiece doesn't add much magnification over the 27x and its FOV is very narrow.

--AP
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Old Friday 9th November 2018, 01:22   #15
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I am now on my second ED50 and I have used the 16x DS, 20x MC and 13-30x MC zoom (old one with fold down eye cup). I have a Swaro ATM 80 HD as my main scope but use the Nikon as a pocket scope or travel scope. I like to use it handheld with the Grippa case or on a lightweight monopod. Here’s my take on the eyepieces:

16x DS - my favourite eyepiece. It has a wide field of view, can be easily handheld and gives a super bright image. Even though it only has the rubber ‘bra’ and no eyecup, I find it easy to use.
20 x MC - also a very good eyepiece with a wide field. Can be handheld at a push but better on a monopod
13-30x MC zoom - I hated the limited field of view as it was so hard to find the birds and it was very dark at higher mags so sold on quickly. Felt like I was looking down a narrow tunnel. Apparently the 13-40 has a similar narrow view so I’ve not felt the need to go there as I prefer the wide eyepieces.

I would like to try the 27x wide as it gets good reviews but I’m worried it may be a bit dark and I know it will be a tripod only eyepiece.
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Old Friday 9th November 2018, 08:48   #16
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Originally Posted by wachipilotes View Post
How is the 40x eyepiece in the tiny ED50? Too much mag.?? Contrast and luminosity ?
Thanks.
Wachi.
I have an ED50A (as well as an ED82A) and I use mine almost exclusively as a travel scope. I use a 20w for 95% of the time but I also take a 40x/75x (old style MC with fold-down eyecup) and use it for more distant viewing as required. In good light the 40x is very useable in my view and I would certainly miss it on occasion if I left it at home.
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Old Friday 9th November 2018, 17:56   #17
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Alexis: really the Nikon ED50 + 27X eyepiece could get to "compete" (I'm not sure of this word) with the Nikon ED82 + 30X? I ask it from curiosity ..

I would like to ask: if you had to choose a single eyepiece for the Nikon ED50, what would it be? I imagine that it should be the most used for most situations ... and I should have a good balance between brightness and detail resolution, right?
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Old Friday 9th November 2018, 19:01   #18
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Alexis: really the Nikon ED50 + 27X eyepiece could get to "compete" (I'm not sure of this word) with the Nikon ED82 + 30X? I ask it from curiosity ..

I would like to ask: if you had to choose a single eyepiece for the Nikon ED50, what would it be? I imagine that it should be the most used for most situations ... and I should have a good balance between brightness and detail resolution, right?
Wachi.
As I tried to explain in my earlier post, when I reach for bins I expect a wide angle ~8x view. That is what I expect bins as a tool to do when I'm birding. Sure, I own 6x, 7x, 8.5x, and 10x bins, but for 99% of my birding etc, I prefer 8/8.5x. For me, when selecting a bin for use, the only real consideration is what size I can carry. I have 8x20, 8x25, 8x30, 8x32, 8x36, and 8x42 bins. In my ideal world, the only differences among them would be those imposed by limitations from the laws of physics, not differences in other design goals, so that I could reach for any of them and get approximately the same view and performance. In the past, small bins weren't designed to perform at their physical limits, but now we have models like the Zeiss 8x25 Victory Pocket, which do quite well as a substitute for full-sized bins under most lighting and other conditions.

When I reach for a scope, I want it to deliver a wide angle ~30x view. Sure, I have eyepieces to cover a wide range of other magnifications from 13x to 150x, but ~30x is what I use most and what I want to see when I first point my scope, rather than my 8x bins, at a bird. The bins give me a view 8x larger (in linear dimensions) than my eyes, and my scope gives me a view ~4x larger than my bins. It's a substantial magnification increase that makes a big difference for my ability to make an ID. Going another 2x larger, to ~60x can also be nice, but it is rarely necessary, is rarely enough make something identifiable as compared to 30x, and it often doesn't work any better than 30x because of atmospheric limitations. I have a 60 mm scope with a 20x eyepiece that I use on a window mount to make quick IDs that are just out of reach of my bins, and I like that scope a lot, but I find it a bit underpowered for general purpose scoping.

In my experience, the Nikon Fieldscope 50ED is optically everything I could hope for in a 50 mm scope. It seems limited only by the laws of physics, not design/manufacturing quality. As noted above, I generally have no interest in lower powers than ~30x, so for me, the perfect eyepiece on it is the 27x. The apparent FOV of the 50x with the 27x is identical to the 82ED with a 30x WF/MC/DS, and the magnification difference is trivial, so I consider these scopes nearly equivalent in capability for most birding. I use the scope on a tripod (Velbon Ultra 455 with small ball head) and I do not find the view dim in normal lighting (It is equivalent in brightness to 32x on a 60 mm scope) or the resolution to be limited at ~30x as compared to the 82ED. Of course the 82ED works better in low light and can support much higher magnifications, but those are not relevant for 95+% of my birding.

After trying many options, nowadays the only eyepiece that I use with the 50ED is the (old) 27x WF, which has the same optical design as the 27x MC and 27x DS but is _much_ less bulky.

--AP
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Old Friday 9th November 2018, 19:37   #19
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Thanks Alexis for your kind response!
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Old Saturday 10th November 2018, 15:33   #20
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This thread is awesome, it really should be a sticky for those interested in buying an ed50 without an eyepiece to help them decided in what eyepiece they should try first
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