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Zeiss Diascope 85 T* FL year of manufacture (1 Viewer)

Ian Byrnes

Well-known member
Well I'm just blown away with your photos, they are amazing and to think that you not only have such a beautiful bird as the Cardinal near you BUT to have the opportunity to photograph a Bald Eagle and at such a close distance is wonderful. What sort of terrain do you live close to down there in Fort Wayne and what sort of proliferation of species do you have?

My iPhone doesn't compare with your Samsung...........looks like another delivery from the postman !! Your shots are brilliant without the phoneskope.

The occurrence of Coranvirus infections and deaths is rising rapidly now. I need to make my last trip out to get some tyres for my car today, then my wife and I are FULLY self isolating. My daughter is dropping food off and we are getting home deliveries from the supermarkets and I think Britain will be in full lock down in a week or so time which means neither of us can leave our home for up to 4 months.....a sobering thought. The rest of Europe is doing the same.....Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Denmark etc are already locked down with borders closed. Poor Italy and Spain have been hit extremely hard and it can only get worse.

Take care and good birding.

Ian
 

Ian Byrnes

Well-known member
Oh and about the air bubbles..... I think may be Zeiss suffered a bit with this 'air bubble' problem from what I have read. It's supposedly the high quality of the lense manufacture that causes it ! If you search for 'air bubbles in objective lens' on Birdforum it brings up other occurrences.

I contacted the UK Zeiss technician regarding this and because I am still within warranty they will replace them for me. I haven't done it yet because of all that's going on but mine was the same as yours.....bubbles and specks at 20 which disappear as you zoom through. But for now I'm not to worried as I don't want to be without the scope for a long period of time.

I'm off to the tyre garage now ...so bye for now.

Ian ( & what's your name?)
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Well I'm just blown away with your photos, they are amazing and to think that you not only have such a beautiful bird as the Cardinal near you BUT to have the opportunity to photograph a Bald Eagle and at such a close distance is wonderful. What sort of terrain do you live close to down there in Fort Wayne and what sort of proliferation of species do you have?

My iPhone doesn't compare with your Samsung...........looks like another delivery from the postman !! Your shots are brilliant without the phoneskope.

The occurrence of Coranvirus infections and deaths is rising rapidly now. I need to make my last trip out to get some tyres for my car today, then my wife and I are FULLY self isolating. My daughter is dropping food off and we are getting home deliveries from the supermarkets and I think Britain will be in full lock down in a week or so time which means neither of us can leave our home for up to 4 months.....a sobering thought. The rest of Europe is doing the same.....Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Denmark etc are already locked down with borders closed. Poor Italy and Spain have been hit extremely hard and it can only get worse.

Take care and good birding.

Ian

Ian, thanks for the compliment. Honestly, I am a little surprised at the photos too. Although, I do not think I can personally take any credit. The Note 10+ really does have a highly rated camera. Plus the conditions and the scope itself are the responsible parties. Thank you all the same, though. I wonder if the adapter/holder will make the photos that much better. I hope so.

I just need to do a little research on the proper way to adjust the settings. The stock camera allows a "Pro" mode. I could not really use it handheld, but hopefully will be able to with the adapter. We will see.

Besides my interest in Whitetail photos, and maybe as a number one reason, the Bald Eagles were a primary motivation for me to pursue digiscoping. It still boggles my mind, in a way, to think that I have a nesting pair so close to my house. They have really bounced back. Knowing that they are there, I have tried various times to get photos of them. Failing, and not wanting to invest thousands into a new hobby (photography/cameras), I went this direction.

Regarding the terrain, this area is mostly flat farm fields, creeks, and the scattered woodlot. Some of the woods stretch for hundreds of acres, but most are less than 100. We are around 4 miles from the town, and have subdivision neighborhoods just down the road. This part of the state is sort of a country/suburbia. I would prefer to be much farther from towns, but I will be happy with what I can get.

I am not really a birder, per se, but, I consider myself, an outdoorsman, of sorts anyway. So, I am sure I know a very limited group of birds by sight. I frequently see Cardinals, Flickers, Red-headed and Downy Woodpeckers (I think), Eastern Bluebirds, Indigo Buntings, a variety of other finches, recently started seeing Pileated Woodpeckers. Thrushes, Red-tailed hawks, Coopers, Barred and Great-horned owls, and so on, are not uncommon. I actually rarely see the owls, but hear them nightly. Deer and Coyote are very common. Otters are coming back. Beaver, Mink, and the like, are around. We have some local wetlands that are set aside. They are usually hundreds of acres, but not thousands, at least within a 30 minute drive radius. I don't know very many waterfowl by sight, but see grebes, wood ducks, mergansers, and others there.

I hope and pray that you remain untouched, at least physically, by the virus. Our kids' schools have shut down for a month. Our foster son, in college now, is off for around the same amount of time. Our oldest son, in the military, has been confined to his base. Our oldest daughter, on her own, is a pre-school teacher/daycare provider for toddlers. She is always dealing with some sort of mild cold or something. If her work shuts down for weeks, it will be difficult, at minimum. Thankfully she is local, so we will all help each other out. Maybe that is one good outcome; that we all work together for once...the country and world, I mean.

Stay well!

I used to read James Herriot's books when I was a kid. Have you heard of him? Not sure if he is as famous in the UK, even though he is from there, as he is/was here. Seeing your mention of needing "tyres", threw me back to those days. I thought he was a great writer, and his books nearly caused me to pursue veterinary medicine. Looking back, I still wish I would have. 3:)
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
I forgot too, Joachim, that I had a brief moment to try star testing it. It was 30* F here, so I should have let the scope cool down from the warm house. I didn't, though. So, hopefully this would change it for the better. Plus, seeing was below average to almost poor.

Definitely different on each side of focus. I am not good at identifying exactly WHAT the issue is, but on one side it looks good, with concentric circles. Although, either the atmosphere or roughness (I think) caused the circles to not be continuous. I hope that makes sense.

On the other side of focus, the circles were sort of astigmatic. Spiky. Turned edge?

Also, I am not sure what magnification I should use. Hopefully, I will get a chance soon to actually take the time to let the scope settle down, and conduct the test properly.

I was surprised at what I saw, though. I do realize that am excellent scope will have obviously nearly identical de-focused images. This scope did not. I hope that under good conditions that will change. I could easily see all 4 stars in the Trapezium, and they were distinctly separated. I don't remember at what power, though. Should I see that at 20x or would I need to crank up the power to at least 30? I will pay closer attention.

No moon at the time I was outside.

No complaints terrestrially, yet. If this tests poorly, it is just another lesson learned. Unless it is free, try before you buy.

Not throwing the baby out with the bathwater, but still might be learning the hard way.
 

Binastro

Well-known member
The Trapezium is seen by those with good eyesight in Canon 15x45 IS binoculars, so 20x should show it to 20/20 vision.

Try Jupiter, it is much higher for you than from here.

B.
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
The Trapezium is seen by those with good eyesight in Canon 15x45 IS binoculars, so 20x should show it to 20/20 vision.

Try Jupiter, it is much higher for you than from here.

B.

Thank you. Good info and good suggestion. I used to have 20/20, but no longer.

I was able to resolve Venus to its half- moon- type shape. No offensive color. It appears to perform as an apo should, in that regard.

It looks cloudy tonight and tomorrow. We will see.
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

sorry, a star test with an instrument not in thermal equilibrium and thus tube currents will always be erratic. But one side better pronounced than the other kinda points to some amount of SA. Stig is usually visible on both sides of focus.

But you should just wait for another clear day and let it cool properly. Or make an artificial star by putting some aluminum foil on a glass surface and make a tiny round hole with a needle. Then put it in front of a led flashlight and observe with the scope from 30m/100ft.

The usual rule of thumb for star testing astro scopes is to use an EP with the focal ratio of the instrument in mm. Since spotters tend to be f5.5 to f7 with larger aperture instruments being on the fast side, just crank it up to 60x - you can't really use a 5 or 6mm EP unless you have an astro adapter - spotter zooms are often 7-21mm or 8-24mm.

Joachim
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Joachim, thank you. I will try that too.

So far, I think this is not a perfect scope, but very good. I hope I am right.

I received the PhoneSkope adapter today. I threw it on the scope, and snapped another Cardinal. I also took a photo of a pine cone. Both were at 60x.

What is your opinion, relative to the scope. Are these pics showing promise for good optics, or ? I think the adapter might have been crooked, relative to the eyepiece. Otherwise, I am not sure why one of the pine cones is sharp and the other seems out of focus. Or, is the depth of field that shallow?

The Cardinal is actually a video capture. I think I am going to shop for a better tripod and fluid head. This one is just too shaky. It takes well over 3+ seconds for the jiggling to completely subside. Otherwise, it is a nice tripod for observing.
 

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Ian Byrnes

Well-known member
Scott I tried to do a bit of stargazing with mine........

The moon was fine at all magnifications but everything else looked like wobbly jelly (although I didn't look at much because it was so cold with the window open and my Diascope is a straight and more difficult to view upwards to the night sky). Because of that I gave up....I'm not that interested any way other than searching for ET ( 'phone home' ET that is, who I did meet once in Florida) 3:)

Any way while I had my tyres done this morning I took my dog to see some birds at a local nature spot......:-C

She Definitely had her eye on the swan !

image.jpeg

Well as I said yesterday they have implemented the 12 week isolation rule for the over 70s and those with major health risks and restricted all gatherings, sport, pubs etc etc. Schools still are functioning though which is tough for my daughter as she's a head and is working with half staff because they have stayed away. Things are about to ramp up!!

Take care, stay safe and batten down the hatches.

Ian
 

Binastro

Well-known member
Ian,

The wobbly jelly is probably because the window was open and warm air was rushing through the window gap.
It might actually be better with the window closed, at least if not at an angle to the window.

One actually needs to leave the scope outside for 20 minutes and then go out and observe.
But in the present circumstances I wouldn't risk getting a cold.

I am in the same boat as you.

It reminds me of the War of the Worlds, but for real this time.

Regards,
B.
 
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Ian Byrnes

Well-known member
Hi Binastro.....

I've read many of your posts. You really are well informed and thanks for your advice.

It's not being able to see my kids and grand children that will unsettle me.... We are the ones that do the school runs and baby sit and now all of that has to be curtailed for the foreseeable future.

Regards

Ian
 

jring

Well-known member
Otherwise, I am not sure why one of the pine cones is sharp and the other seems out of focus. Or, is the depth of field that shallow?

The Cardinal is actually a video capture. I think I am going to shop for a better tripod and fluid head. This one is just too shaky. It takes well over 3+ seconds for the jiggling to completely subside. Otherwise, it is a nice tripod for observing.

Hi,

the depth of field of a fast instrument at high magnification can get very shallow... just think about that nifty fifty f1.2 bokeh monster you have for your camera... not so high magnification there but super fast.

As for the tripod, try the following before getting another one. Take a daypack with some stuff in it. When the tripod is set up, pull one shoulder strap over the scope and and let the strap go around the spread out tripod legs somewhere in the middle of the legs. That way you put some load on the tripod which is always good plus the strap around the legs will dampen vibrations.

As for the terrible seeing out of the window from a heated room - that is to be expected...

Joachim
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Scott I tried to do a bit of stargazing with mine........

The moon was fine at all magnifications but everything else looked like wobbly jelly (although I didn't look at much because it was so cold with the window open and my Diascope is a straight and more difficult to view upwards to the night sky). Because of that I gave up....I'm not that interested any way other than searching for ET ( 'phone home' ET that is, who I did meet once in Florida) 3:)

Any way while I had my tyres done this morning I took my dog to see some birds at a local nature spot......:-C

She Definitely had her eye on the swan !

View attachment 721318

Well as I said yesterday they have implemented the 12 week isolation rule for the over 70s and those with major health risks and restricted all gatherings, sport, pubs etc etc. Schools still are functioning though which is tough for my daughter as she's a head and is working with half staff because they have stayed away. Things are about to ramp up!!

Take care, stay safe and batten down the hatches.

Ian

I know that these are not ideal for stargazing, but I think mine will get used that way too. I enjoy that area of the hobby too. I have a dedicated astro scope, but this one will be easy to grab at any time. With a straight-thru view, it would be very difficult.

That nature spot looks beautiful. That photo is great! We occasionally see swans, but I think they are considered an invasive species here. But, that might be a specific type.

Just curious, but what kind of dog do you have?

Yes, stay healthy. I just overheard the tv in the other room. It sounds like we are definitely in the battening down the hatches mode here too. I just hope it is not too little too late. Stay safe!
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Ian,

The wobbly jelly is probably because the window was open and warm air was rushing through the window gap.
It might actually be better with the window closed, at least if not at an angle to the window.

One actually needs to leave the scope outside for 20 minutes and then go out and observe.
But in the present circumstances I wouldn't risk getting a cold.

I am in the same boat as you.

It reminds me of the War of the Worlds, but for real this time.

Regards,
B.

I remember reading the War of the Worlds (a "Little Big Book" verision). It sent my imagination off into a very dark place, at my young age. My dad brought up the movie, in reference to the virus.
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Hi,

the depth of field of a fast instrument at high magnification can get very shallow... just think about that nifty fifty f1.2 bokeh monster you have for your camera... not so high magnification there but super fast.

As for the tripod, try the following before getting another one. Take a daypack with some stuff in it. When the tripod is set up, pull one shoulder strap over the scope and and let the strap go around the spread out tripod legs somewhere in the middle of the legs. That way you put some load on the tripod which is always good plus the strap around the legs will dampen vibrations.

As for the terrible seeing out of the window from a heated room - that is to be expected...

Joachim

I will try that. I find the vibrations while I am trying to find that final bit of focusing to be a serious obstacle. It is bad when just observing, but a TON more difficult when trying to focus for a photo. I will give that a shot, though.

Ok, I will stop posting photos. I hope it is not annoying for me to keep posting. But, now that I finally have the adapter, I thought I would see what the consensus is regarding the scope's abilities.

I guess it does not matter, as long as I am happy with it. So far, I think I am very happy. With the right conditions, I think it might really allow me to take some great pics. Today was gray and dreary again. In fact, it was raining. I went to a pavilion, and just tried to reach out to any target available. It was pretty limited. I had some other shots, of a pair of wood ducks, but they were poor.

Somehow I seem to find every blade of grass or wayward bush faintly blocking my photo. It softens the focus, and ruined many of the pics. These were the best I could do.

All are at 60x. The Redwing Blackbird on the pole was the closest bird to me. Everything else was a couple of hundred yards away, except for the little Song Sparrow, which was around 30ish yards away.

I included the originals, plus some of the modifications. At least one of them shows the bubbles or dust. Disappointing. Otherwise, I think this scope at least looks pretty good.
 

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Joker9937

Well-known member
Here are the rest...
 

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jring

Well-known member
Hi,

quite frankly, if you can take pictures like the sparrow ones through your scope at 60x, you can't complain about the optics.

Regarding the black stuff in the first blackbird image - was this taken at a lower magnification then, because you said it was only visible at around 20x...

If it gets into focus it must be somewhere near the focal plane which should be in the general area of the front element of the eyepiece. You could take a soft blowing brush and brush off the EP front element and the protective glass inside the EP bayonet.

If that doesn't help, fixing it will involve disassembly and I personally would not want to pay for such a minor fault... if it's still under warranty, they may fix it for free, but there is still a chance that sth goes wrong either in transport or it gets worked on on a monday morning...

Joachim
 

Ian Byrnes

Well-known member
Hi Joachim

I have the same problem as Scott with my Diascope..... I said to him that others on the Forum have experienced the similar and after much reading around the problem it appears to be bubbles either in the glass or coatings on the objective lens....a problem I think that Zeiss have experienced before and can be solved by replacement if under warranty but with the current coved-19 problems it may be better to put up it for the moment as it doesn't affect the qualty of photography as born out by Scotts photos.

Scott.......

Your pics are brilliant...you must be very pleased. With the current problems being able to get out safely and immerse yourself into your hobby is a great bonus and I bet you're glad that you got your 'kit' now as the post and online ordering could be a problem in the future.

I forgot to mention ...yes...James Herriots work has been very popular in the UK, with a long running TV series years ago.....no doubt you could view it on YouTube.

Binastro & Scott....

'War of the Worlds' and all of the past disaster movies about 'Viruses' have become a reality - really CHILLING.

Take care all..... Ian
 

Joker9937

Well-known member
Hi,

quite frankly, if you can take pictures like the sparrow ones through your scope at 60x, you can't complain about the optics.

Regarding the black stuff in the first blackbird image - was this taken at a lower magnification then, because you said it was only visible at around 20x...

If it gets into focus it must be somewhere near the focal plane which should be in the general area of the front element of the eyepiece. You could take a soft blowing brush and brush off the EP front element and the protective glass inside the EP bayonet.

If that doesn't help, fixing it will involve disassembly and I personally would not want to pay for such a minor fault... if it's still under warranty, they may fix it for free, but there is still a chance that sth goes wrong either in transport or it gets worked on on a monday morning...

Joachim

Thanks, Joachim. I think, at this point, the limiting factor for this scope is just me. Not that it couldn't be bested by another scope, but just that it is, at least, a normal Zeiss. While there is variability in the optical quality, they did not become an alpha as a result of their average scope being poor. So, I am satisfied, and pleasantly, with its daytime performance.

Thank you for your input and explanations. The spots are a real annoyance, and if I can square it away, I intend to. Not now, though. I will just deal with it.

I actually have cleaned all exterior surfaces. Well, "cleaned" sounds more significant. "Dusted" with Zeiss cleaning fluid is a better explanation. I am used to cleaning old (50 yoa +/-) glass and coatings, so I was really gentle. Nothing changed, though. So, it is either bubbles, like Ian understood, or deeper inside.

I am not even considering an attempt to go any further with cleaning this scope. It is too close to being awesome for me to risk destroying it. I have disassembled a variety of binoculars and classic telescopes, but WAAAAY too many moving parts in this puppy to let a bumbler like me inside.

So, for now, the bubbles stay. Maybe that is a good name for the scope. I don't name my scopes, though, I have heard others do that. Name theirs, that is. But, "Bubbles", hmmmm...






...Naw, I think not. LOL.3:)

Thank you again. Your knowledge is appreciated.

Hi Joachim

I have the same problem as Scott with my Diascope..... I said to him that others on the Forum have experienced the similar and after much reading around the problem it appears to be bubbles either in the glass or coatings on the objective lens....a problem I think that Zeiss have experienced before and can be solved by replacement if under warranty but with the current coved-19 problems it may be better to put up it for the moment as it doesn't affect the qualty of photography as born out by Scotts photos.

Scott.......

Your pics are brilliant...you must be very pleased. With the current problems being able to get out safely and immerse yourself into your hobby is a great bonus and I bet you're glad that you got your 'kit' now as the post and online ordering could be a problem in the future.

I forgot to mention ...yes...James Herriots work has been very popular in the UK, with a long running TV series years ago.....no doubt you could view it on YouTube.

Binastro & Scott....

'War of the Worlds' and all of the past disaster movies about 'Viruses' have become a reality - really CHILLING.

Take care all..... Ian

Ian, I agree with both of you that the bubbles can be overlooked for now. I doubt mine is still under warranty. I will look into it at some point, but will just enjoy the scope for now.

I do know that there is nothing obvious, to me at least, in the coatings on the objective. It is a beautiful purplish/pinkish color (I think that would be the description). No defects that I can see. The ep, is a little questionable. But, I think I can see flecks on an element that appears to be inside the tube. Looking in from the objective, I initially thought it was internal dust. Who knows? I will, like you, just overlook it, and enjoy the scope.

Yes, Ian, I am definitely shocked and pleased with some of the pics this scope/phone combo have provided. Wow! It really is far better than I expected, and almost as good as my childish imagination had hoped for. Of course, I wanted to see each individual feather, and the louse crawling around, on a hummingbird, and at 1,000 yds. LOL. But, that is the goofy kid in me. I really am starting to love this scope.

So, just in case I can actually help another person, you specifically, here are a few things that have helped, I think, get some good pics. Before that, though, I do not want to sound like I think I have a handle on photography, because I don't. The Note 10's camera is almost dummy-proof, so the credit goes right past me. These little things, though, might help others, though.

The first benefit to the Note 10 is that I can set the camera to be activated by voice. I do not have to push the button to take a photo. I just say "capture" or something, and it snaps the pic. It works VERY well, and I used it even when hand-holding the photos. It, obviously, eliminates vibration caused by that touch.

Secondly, I added to my hands-free method a bluetooth shutter remote. Yesterday I used that. So, it was a combination of numerous photos, with only a handful, as you can see above, and this remote, that resulted in the few that were worthwhile. So, really, points 2 and 3, I guess.

And, I guess, the last thing that might be worth offering, is that while I am far less capable than most, I can manipulate the settings on the Note 10 camera. I can change the ISO (even though I do not know what that means), shutter speed, and, other things, to allow me to find a combination that looks best to my eye. If I understood those things better, I know I can only improve the results. In "Pro mode" I can even change some things to a manual adjustment, but select "auto" for others. So, again, the camera, is hugely beneficial to a rookie like me.

I said that was the last thing, but I actually thought of another. I took some video yesterday too. I have far less control over the video camera (no pro mode, for some reason), but I can snatch still photos from the
"reel" later. The video seems to capture a clearer more focused image than some of my snapshots.

I hope this helps you and others. Just my observations over the last week or so. I think your photos are already excellent, but thought that maybe having a remote shutter controller might send you into the next level. I apologize if it sounds like I am being a know-it-all. Not my intention at all.

I will have to look for an existing thread, but if there isn't one, I might start a digiscoping rookie thread. Or, maybe a digiscoping rookie ZEISS thread. I would like to post stuff to get advice and improve, and also to see others' successes. It probably already exists, but if not, I will get that going for at least the two of us. If it does exist, please, keep posting pics.

Did you say you already have the PhoneSkope adapter. I think you did, but now I cannot remember if that was the brand or not. My only complaint(s), so far, (actually, more of a constructive criticism, I hope) about their product, is that it seems that it does not easily allow the camera lens to sit exactly level. It seems that there might be a way to allow a bit more precision in that regard. Not a big deal, but I noticed it. Otherwise, an excellent adapter. Thanks, for the recommendation, if it was you that recommended it.

I hope you can get outside over these next few weeks. I also hope and pray that it is just a "few weeks". At this point, we are not restricted, literally, to our dwellings, but gatherings, I think, are limited to no more than 10, and virtually everything is closed down.

I am a police detective, so I will continue working throughout. I am guessing that the only change that might take place for me might be to leave my desk, and actually work with the main patrols. I hope it does not get to that point, because that would mean that things are VERY bad.

Stay encouraged, and safe, all.
 

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