Televue 2″ “shorty” diagonal, 17mm Nagler, 35mm Panoptic 2″ eyepieces

I take my first step into high-quality eyepieces. My credit card company throws an unscheduled office party.

The more I learned about my telescope, the more I realized that the inexpensive 1.25″ eyepieces bundled with my NexStar 8i were the weak link. They didn’t have that “snap” into focus I’d read about, and their field of view was disappointingly narrow (especially the higher power eyepieces). And after reading Ed Ting’s TeleVue eyepiece reviews, I realized that I’d have to own a TeleVue someday. I asked in the newsgroups, and the feedback was that, while my NexStar 8i couldn’t take full advantage of 2″ eyepieces, I’d still notice a significant improvement. That’s OK, I rationalized, I’ll probably buy a cheap, big Dobson light bucket someday anyway, and the 2″ TeleVues can serve double duty.

I’m happy to say that the two new TeleVues look fantastic. I like the famous “space-walk” feeling of the Nagler’s 82 degree field of view. The Panoptic, while only 68 degrees, still gives great views. I’d never trade either of them. I do need either a higher-power TeleVue or perhaps a good quality 2″ Barlow for closer views. The cost was high, but a local scope shop was going out of business, and selling everything for 2% over their cost. It was hard to resist.

The new eyepieces have created a few problems as well. First, even though I had hoped otherwise, the TeleVue “shorty” diagonal does not clear the base on my NexStar 8i. Which means I can’t point at anything near the zenith. Plus, the scope is out of balance. With a 1.25″ diagonal and small eyepieces, the scope was well balanced, but a 2″ diagonal and eyepiece can add a few extra pounds to one end of the scope. The result was that the scope would sometimes tilt up of its own volition.

There was no need for concern, though since the newsgroups already had an answer: Ray’s Bracket.

Explore posts in the same categories: Astronomy Gear

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