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Alternative to the TE-9Z zoom on the 663M? (1 Viewer)

mskb

Well-known member
Hello, I am wondering about the 20-60 zoom's relatively narrow field. I see the 30X fixed TE-14W being recommended as an alternative, but are there better zoom alternatives that would fit a 663M? Thanks!
 

marcsantacurz

Well-known member
I think the 3 choices are: TE-17HD 25x LER (FoV 41.9 M), TE-14WD 30x wide (FoV 36.7M), and TE-9Z 20-60x zoom (FOV 33.2-17.5M). I don't think the TE-11WZ (FoV 42~23M) is compatible outside the 77mm - 88mm models.

Compare to the Nikon 20-60x MEP with FoV 37-17M, the TE-9Z is a little more restricted at the high-end (4m @ 1000m).

The exit pupil on the TE-9 is 3.3-1.1mm while the MEP 20-60 on the 82ED is 4.1 to 1.4 mm. That might be more noticeable than the FoV difference.

I've not used the TSN-663, so that is all just specs. I'm not sure what the experience difference is between the 663 and 82ED with their 20-60x zooms.

Marc
 

mskb

Well-known member
Thanks Marc for the 20-60 Nikon reference.

I guess then, if picking the 663M, it is a hard decision on the eyepiece : zoom flexibility vs. a significantly more relaxed view. Not sure when the TE-9Z was released (2011?) but if it is about a decade old, one would think Kowa would have come up with an improved FoV zoom eyepiece by now! It would make our decisions a lot easier!
 
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jring

Well-known member
Hi,

a wide angle zoom needs a larger field stop diameter than the Kowa small bodies can suport with their bayonet mount.

Joachim
 

mskb

Well-known member
Thanks Joachim. Interesting, so perhaps we need a new body design then? Other manufacturers with their more modern 60/65 scopes seem to have have worked things out fairly OK. Given that the 663M came out ~4.5 years ago, perhaps we will see some improvement with the 600/660 series bodies in the next two to three years. Who knows! I would be surprised if they can go on with this narrow FoV-d zoom for the next decade.

We really like the 663Ms. The zoom makes the choice hard.
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

I doubt that Kowa will make a new small body bayonet in the near future given the fact that they just did bring out the a lot of accessories for the small bodies along with a big campaign based on the compatibility of what is now called System S.

They could of course make a 30-X wide zoom. It's just 20x where a wide afov will result into more tfov than the small bodies can support.

Joachim
 

mskb

Well-known member
Thanks Joachim! You are a lot more experienced in this than I am, so you are probably right.

I just looked up System S - thank you! - it is an interesting effort. However, it does make me wonder if a bunch of adapters & accessories are enough to suggest they might not be bringing out new body designs (and create a couple more adapters if needed). Especially when the current body design is "limiting" for wide FoV zoom EP designs.

I am just venting my frustration with that zoom. We loved everything else about the 663M.
 

marcsantacurz

Well-known member
I usually use a fixed 32x on my MM4/60, not the 15-45 SDL zoom. The 32x (and 27x for that matter) is a much more pleasant view -- nice wide AFoV that surrounds your eye much better than the SDL. Also, something closer to a 2mm exit pupil is much brighter than the top end of the zoom too.

You might see if you can get a demo at the store with the 30x wide or 25x LER.

Marc
 

jring

Well-known member
I am just venting my frustration with that zoom. We loved everything else about the 663M.

Hi,

in that case, take the 30 wide and maybe the 1.6x extender for cases you need more reach. Or use the 30x normally and put on the zoom only for high magnifications (the zoom has a not too shabby afov at 60x).

Or have another look at the Nikon ED60 with a wide angle fixed EP or two. Your problems with narrow field and insufficient eye relief will be gone...

Btw, I dare say that your results were skewed a bit by heat haze if you found all instruments on test to show a noticeably degraded image beyond 30x - this is sth beyond the control of the manufacturer (all instruments of equal aperture will be affected in the same way at a given time - smaller aperture gives a higher probability to temporarily get a good image - bino-vision helps too as the brain merges the sharp parts of each tube).

I took out my Kowa 613 with the 20-60 zoom to the balcony this morning and found the image at 60x quite ok (cool sunny morning over water - so no heat haze). Yes, my TSN-3 with the SDLv2 might offer a bit more afov and might be a bit better at discerning subtle plumage patterns at max magnification (and certainly in a star test). But the 613 is quite usable and I might take it on my next vacation with a light tripod.

Joachim
 

mskb

Well-known member
Thanks Joachim! We hope to try to get a look through the 663M with the 30X fixed, compare once again with the Opticron MM4/60. If still not satisfying, may be, we need to go the "buy once-cry once" route. Darn!
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

one more question on the MM4 with the SDLv2 - you did twist down the eycup for use with glasses, right?
Because I often have people with glasses looking through mine and when the eycup is down, they usually are ok (or too afraid to complain ;-)

Joachim
 

mskb

Well-known member
Hi Marc, Joachim and others, We did the aforementioned comparisons and tried out a couple other scopes one more time. We made sure we checked out the TE-9Z in store one more time. I realized I was being too harsh on the TE-9Z in my earlier posts. I have now purchased the 663M + TE-9Z 20-60. Cheers, and thanks for the help everyone!
 
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mayoayo

Well-known member
The Baader Hyperion Mk IV doesnt fit the small kowas?.I would have to test that Myself ..unfortunately i havent been able to locate a scope to do so...I am not saying that the people that tried didnt do It well,but i read similar reports about the Kowa 823 and ended working more than well...
 

jring

Well-known member
The Baader Hyperion Mk IV doesnt fit the small kowas?.I would have to test that Myself ..unfortunately i havent been able to locate a scope to do so...I am not saying that the people that tried didnt do It well,but i read similar reports about the Kowa 823 and ended working more than well...

Hi,

I think nobody tried it... I have a 613 but unfortunately I did get a Mk III for my astro scope some years ago so not too inclined to get the IV.

I can do a quick check tonight and tell you up to what distance I can focus with the III. Maybe s.b. in the astro club has a Mk IV to really try it... gotta ask...

EDIT: tried 663 with Baader Mk III - fits mechanically if the plastic cylinder over the groove and pin is removed, limit of focus is 700m or so. Mk IV will likely come to infinity then...

Joachim
 
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Vámibimbero

Well-known member
The Baader Hyperion Mk IV doesnt fit the small kowas?.I would have to test that Myself ..unfortunately i havent been able to locate a scope to do so...I am not saying that the people that tried didnt do It well,but i read similar reports about the Kowa 823 and ended working more than well...
Hello,

I tried it, on TS-612 and TS-614. I did not have success to reach absolute infinity (I means: with a genuine Kowa eyepiece you can reach infinity AND some plus tours with the focus knob); the infinity is reached at lower magnifications, but with high mags, the limitation of sharp distances is several hundred meters. It is just my experience; in other thread somebody made DIY 3D printed attachment and stated about normal infinity circumstances: https://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=356170.

Regards

Vámi
 
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jring

Well-known member
I tried it, on TS-612 and TS-614. I did not have success to reach absolute infinity (I means: with a genuine Kowa eyepiece you can reach infinity AND some plus tours with the focus knob); the infinity is reached at lower magnifications, but with high mags, the limitation of sharp distances is several hundred meters. It is just my experience; in other thread somebody made DIY 3D printed attachment and stated about normal infinity circumstances: https://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=356170.

Hi,

thanks for the info - the Mk IV in that thread was modified by cutting off a bit of the zoom barrel...

Joachim
 

Vámibimbero

Well-known member
Hello,

No, that was an another post/thread. I remember because I made the same cut on my Baader zoom with the same cutting tool, but even with that shortened lower barrel, the combo of mine did not reach the necessary deepness. I think that the secret hint would be the dremel tool + griding stone combo that modified the inner part of the ocular house, but until now I did not have enough self-esteem and courage to make a bigger operation on my 614. :)

Krisz
 

mayoayo

Well-known member
Are all the bayonets from the TSN 1/2/3/4 ,60#,61#,66# etc absolutely the same?
I know they are compatible ,can you confirm if they have the exact same dimensions?
 
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