Celestron Ultima LX 17mm 1.25″ / 2″ eyepiece

The Celestron Ultima LX 17mm is a sensible focal length for general use. Although it does have 1.25″ fitting, we recommend using on a 2″ focuser for a more secure fit.

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Lyra constellation wide field using Ostara Moon & Skyglow filter

I took this image of Lyra wide field using a Canon EOS 1100D + a vintage Vivitar 50mm f1.8 lens. By chance the Ostara 2″ Moon / Skyglow filter rests on the 49mm thread lens, but does not screw in. Providing the camera is pointing up it should not fall off. But you could tape into place if you wish.

So as always I use magnified live view for accurate focus. Thinking f1.8 would have poor edge of field coma, I stopped down to f2.8. Coma was still bad, so I set it at f4 which cured the problem.

After some trials at different exposures on an tripod with no tracking, I found that 13 seconds was the most I could go without too much trailing. ISO was 6400. Despite the skyglow filter removing most of the orange skyglow, there was still much processing to be done.

Software used was Canon digital photo professional 4. With this the image was sharpened and chromatic aberration and luminance noise reduced. Used the curves to darken the background sky and enhance the stars. As a final touch I reduced magenta to remove the last of the skyglow

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Visionary Nature Scout 8×42 binoculars VI330458

The Visionary Nature-scout 8×42 binoculars offer excellent optics when to take in to account the sub £50 price tag. Despite having fully coated optics with BK7 prisms, colours, contrast and brightness are very good. There is some false colours (chromatic aberration) , even in the centre, but well within tolerances

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Illusion 7×35 monocular review

The Illusion 7×35 monocular is a popular seller at our weekend outlet. Main factors are a no nonsense easy to use design with great handling, bright optics and a wide field of view. Comes complete with a case and tripod thread

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Fully multi-coated optics Vs fully coated optics

Hope this video gives a simple to understand practical demonstration on the benefits of Fully multi-coated optics when paired against fully coated optics.

This is not saying fully coated optics are bad. There are many models and brands that give excellent views for a low cost.

 

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How to collimate Celestron Skymaster 15×70 binoculars

The video below applies to the Celestron Skymaster 15×70, 25×70, 20×80 binoculars plus the Cometron 12×70. Collimation is a very simple process with no dismantling needed. The adjustment screw is located under the rubber covering on the hand grips. I like to work on one side only. Only adjust the opposite side for minor adjustments if needed.

Place the binoculars on a solid base or tripod to do this. Invite a friend to help if you struggle to make the adjustment while looking through them at the same time. See the video below for more details.

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How to fix a pair of Hawke Endurance PC 10×25 , 8×25 binoculars

Over time you may find one of the barrels on your Hawke Endurance PC 8×25 and 10×25 binoculars has come lose. There is a very easy fix. Simple prise the top cover off with a screw driver to reveal a small screw on either side. Simply tighten these up to make them secure again and back in collimation. See the video below for a more detailed tutorial.

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Skywatcher Panorama 23mm eyepiece video review

At 800g the 2 inch Skywatcher Panorama 23mm eyepiece is not as heavy as some 2″ eyepieces, but will require a sturdy mount and a focuser capable of taking the weight. 23mm is a good all round focal length for general use.

The eye cup is twist type. Unlike some twist eye cup eyepieces you do do twist the cup. Instead you twist the centre of the eyepiece body. Optics are Fully multi-coated with 7 lens elements. Threaded to accept 2″ filters

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Skywatcher Nirvana 28mm eyepiece video

Big eyepiece with a big field of view. The Skywatcher Nirvana 28mm 2″ eyepiece is the ideal choice for wide field views of the heavens. Fully multi-coated optics, and long eye relief. This beast of an eyepiece weight 1 kg, so be sure you have equipment of handling it

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Ostara 20mm SWA70 eyepiece overview and review

Looking through astronomy forums, this eyepiece gets some mixed opinions to say the least. I may be wrong, but I would guess many of the views are from people that have not looked through this model.

For those who have looked through it, they have been impressed with the wide field of view, which far exceeds a standard plossl. Colours , contrast and edge of field quality far outperform plossls in the £20-£30 range.

One of our customers at Northern Optics was so impressed, they bought a second to use with their bino-viewer. Specs are 70 degree apparent field, fully multi-coated optics, solid build and internal blackened edges.

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