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Old Apr 13, 2003, 3:45 PM   #11
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"There are ample statistics available on each of these fine optics which show that they rank at the very top of the heap for sharpness and optical properties. "
I am not denying that it is great quality for a standard plossl. I'd be interested in any comparrisons between these and eyepieces of significantly higher quality (TV Panoptics, Pentax XL's,...). My Meade conversion eyepiece shows the exact same traits as the DCL (possibly better edge sharpness) and it too is basically a high-quality standard plossl. I do realize that the Scopetronix versions are wide-angle versions based on the same basic plossl design.

I agree with the post-processing idea too. It's just that I waste enough time downsizing my photos, without trying to decide on how much r,g,or b I can add before it looks phony. I would just sooner have the eyepiece do a little more of my work. I'm only responding to this because I have owned each of the eyepieces I've commented on, and these are just my findings.

I think if you check any of PaulyOly's examples you'll see just how good these other eyepieces can be in the color/sharpness department. Most of his photos are amazing quality for someone relatively new to digiscoping.

Again, I agree that the DCL/STWA's are great for a standard plossl design! Here is a link to some samples from my "new" eyepiece-adapter mentioned above:

http://www.pbase.com/dj_hoffman/conv...eaded_eyepiece
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Old Apr 13, 2003, 4:39 PM   #12
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I'd be interested in any comparrisons between these and eyepieces of significantly higher quality (TV Panoptics, Pentax XL's,...).
Though it's possible that even better quality images might be made with the more expensive eyepieces, the primary issue as I see it is that to get the image, one need to be able to frame the subject at varying distances. To do this requires a modicum of zoom range whether that be afforded by the camera or a zoom eyepiece. Perhaps why the Swarovski 20-60 zoom is so popular with digiscopers is that it offers one of the finest zoom eyepieces available and has a range amenable to many digiscoping uses.

The down side, as I've said in other posts, is twofold. First, it's necessary to use some friction device like a rubber band to prevent zoom "creep" from wrecking the frame. Second, it's necessary to have the camera at nearly full zoom, which is usually not the very best focal length for distortion free images, and also puts the Nikons into the worst light gathering of their range.

With the ScopeTronix and William Optics eyepieces, there is ample zoom range so that great images may be usually made in the mid-range of the camera's zoom as well as at the extremes. If a suitable eyepiece of the highest quality glass were available which could afford the photographer this zoom leeway, then I would be the first in line to purchase it. But to my knowledge, there is no TV Panoptics or other eyepiece of similar design made with a large exit pupil ocular like the WO or ST eyepieces. This then limits the user to a single focal length or tiny zoom range which is most inconvenient unless by pure chance the subject happens to be at just the proper distance.

I find the William Optics and ScopeTronix eyepieces to do the job in fine fashion and render tack sharp images to the limits of my various scopes native focal length ranges. Would I welcome "better and sharper images?" Sure. But I'm sure not willing to give up the zoom range and mid-focal length advantage of the camera's native lens to facilitate the outside chance that I might get superior performance in the small percentage of cases when I might be able to use these eyepieces.

As far as edge sharpness is concerned. I would welcome perfect edge sharpness, but for digiscoping purposes it's of limited importance since the background of the vast majority of shots will be out of focus and edges of of less importance than central lens sharpness because that's usually close to where the subject will be found.

Here's a 6000mm (5989mm exactly) shot with the William Optics DCS-28 and my Meade ETX-90. The eyepiece, for me, is a non-issue. It works very well and gets me results I can live with while providing great zoom versatility.

Best regards,

Lin

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Old Apr 14, 2003, 12:17 AM   #13
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Your info on the Swaro zoom was news to me. I had no idea of the downsides it has. I just assumed it was similar to mine. Zoom creep is non-existant for me. Changing zoom almost requires two hands, and I only have to be at 1/2 camera zoom (990) even at 60x eyepiece zoom. I was really unaware of other zoom's abilities. Basically my post was about fixed focus eyepieces, I just mentioned my zoom because I've been spending so much time on making an adapter for it.

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Both the Swarovski and ScopeTronix eyepieces are equal in every way to the best which Leica, Pentax, Swarovski, Meade, Celestron and Kowa make.
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If a suitable eyepiece of the highest quality glass were available which could afford the photographer this zoom leeway, then I would be the first in line to purchase it. But to my knowledge, there is no TV Panoptics or other eyepiece of similar design made with a large exit pupil ocular like the WO or ST eyepieces.
This was the sole reason of my mention of the Pentax XL's, as comparing them to a standard plossl seemed odd to me. Also, it is possible to purchace an eyepiece with substantially higher grade glass and still maintain or exceed the large exit pupil occular/exit pupil diameter needed for digiscoping. As a side benifit, you gain 4mm of additional eye relief and 3 Degrees (XL-28 ) or 13 degrees (XL-21) of AFOV (these values are in comparison to the DCL-28 ).

Your Starling picture is beautiful for such a long focal distance. But my comments are all in reference to spotting scopes, as you well know that what is an amazing eyepiece in an f/12 telescope, often looks quite opposite in a fast f/6 scope and vice-versa (although I am not implying this to be the exact case withe the W/O).

Despite all of my rambling on, I do not agree to the whole Idea that simply more money=better quality. Therefore, an eyepiece that immediately comes to mind is the Vixen Lanthanum (LV) 25mm. You still gain 4mm more eye relief and have the added benifit of one of your elements being made of Lanthanum (a possible chromatic abberation reducer). Exit pupil diameter/exit pupil occular size again meeting or exceeding the W/O. It is also known to work great in fast scopes. Cost is in the $120 range.
Many of my figures were taken from:
http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/section.php?sectionid=22

I guess we could go on and on! Although, it sure is an interesting debate. 8)

Dennis
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Old Apr 14, 2003, 9:21 AM   #14
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Dj-Hoffman

As a person who is reading all of this, don't let me stop you two from continuing. I'm learning a lot about eye pieces and digiscoping from this back-and-forth. I've found it very educational.

Lin

The color rendition on the breast of that starling seems a little... artificial? Grainy? I'm not sure the word. Something doesn't seem natural to me. I don't know, maybe it's just because of the shiny subject combined with the *huge* distance.....

Which of your many cameras did you use to capture it?

The huge reach and quality of the pictures to be had with this setup continues to amaze me. I keep thinking that I might have to try going that root some day. That bird wouldn't be more than a smudge with a 500 or 600mm lens on the 10D I'm purchasing. Oh the toys I'd get if I was filthy rich.
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Old Apr 14, 2003, 10:09 AM   #15
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The color rendition on the breast of that starling seems a little... artificial? Grainy?
Hi Eric,
Actually, it's pretty natural for the Starling which shows strong irredescent greens and violets in sunlight. I used the Nikon CP990 with the Meade ETX-90 and William Optics DCL-28 24mm eyepiece for that shot.

With your 10D you can also use the Meade ETX-90 with Meade's "T" adapter and a standard "T" connect to get a fixed "2000mm" equivalency. There is a port on the Meade which allows access to the 1250mm fixed focal length (1250mmx1.6x=2000mm) at F13.8. Here are a couple shots made with my D30 at 2000mm with the Meade. The first shot of the fox kits is at a distance of a couple hundred feet and the butterfly is about 10 feet.

The great thing about the Meade is that it will focus down to 7 feet so you can actually shoot macros of insects with it (a little hard to use the finder scope, at that focal length and close focus distance) if you set up on a flower or similar attractive base and wait for a butterfly, etc.

Lin


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Old Apr 14, 2003, 11:11 AM   #16
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Wow, those two pictures are quite amazing. A 7-foot minimum focus is a lot better than I expected. Now I'm really starting too look forward to getting something like this when my wallet recovers from the 10D and 100-400L.

My comment on the starling's breast wasn't about the colors as much as the texture. Like a moire patter is just starting to show or something. Maybe it's just a trick of my eyes/brain. I do agree that the color and gloss is normal... I haven't seen one since last year, but it fits what I recall.

I've seen the T suggestion before, but that was ages go. Humm... I assume going with a CP4500 would be more flexable because of the zoom range it would give, whereas the 10D in raw mode might generate better pictures (all things being equal.) But it would save some money over buying another camera.
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Old Apr 15, 2003, 11:16 AM   #17
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My comment on the starling's breast wasn't about the colors as much as the texture. Like a moire patter is just starting to show or something.
I think what you are seeing is jpg compression artifacts. I compressed the image tightly then applied a gaussian blur to the sky to blur the compression artifacts there, but there was no convenient way to minimize them on the highlights of the feathers. I'll see if I can find the original and post it with less compression.

Lin
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Old Apr 15, 2003, 3:53 PM   #18
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Lin,

I'd be interested in seeing it. I'm on a cable modem, so the size won't be too much of a problem.

At this point I'm still in the learning on the digital size of all this (and not that far along with the photo side) so I wasn't sure if my eyes were tricking me or not.
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Old May 6, 2003, 9:55 PM   #19
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Sorry, i do not check this forum often. I had no idea i started so much controversy. The examples i could find to compare the two eyepieces ( pentax xl-28 and williams dcl-28) made me decide on the pentax. I retract my comment about the dcl-28 being cheap, i've never owned this eyepiece, i'm no expert on eyepieces or scopes.

As Mr. hoffman stated i am new to digiscoping and spotting scope, but not new to digital photography. I dare say that the pentax xl-28 can produce better images than the williams optics dcl-28, atleast when used with the cp990 and pentax pf80ed-a scope, as i have not seen any images taken with the dcl-28 that can make me say otherwise. Here are a few examples, i did nothing but sharpen the images using Olympus camedia 2.5, no color changes or contrast was done, i sharpened 3 on a scale from 1-9 using the olympus software and cropped the image at 100%, NO resizing, these are 100% crops. If someone can show me a 100% crop taken with the dcl-28 and cp990 on any telescope spotting scope that delivers better results then i'm willing to try it wholeheartedly. Otherwise my next eyepiece purchase will be the pentax xl-21. All pics were taken in macro mode at half zoom from 15-20 feet. Well pics won't work so here's the links.

http://www.pbase.com/image/16375887


http://www.pbase.com/image/16375883

http://www.pbase.com/image/16375885



And here's a resized pic

http://www.pbase.com/image/16376784

http://www.pbase.com/image/16411344
[quote="Lin Evans"]
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Would I welcome "better and sharper images?" Sure. But I'm sure not willing to give up the zoom range and mid-focal length advantage of the camera's native lens to facilitate the outside chance that I might get superior performance in the small percentage of cases when I might be able to use these eyepieces.
Zoom range isn't an issue with the pentax xl-28, even at full wide the vignetting is almost nill. The exit pupil is 4.4mm with the pentax eyepiece, what is the dcl-28's exit pupil?

If anyone wants to see more examples click here.

http://www.pbase.com/paulyoly/digisc...th_pentax_80ed

every pic in this gallery was taken using the pentax scope/xl-28 eyepiece and cp990

If you see a red X, try refreshing or right click on the X and click show pic. If anyone doesn't understand what a 100% crop means please ask and hopefully someone else can explain because i don't fully understand it myself.

I'm in no way affiliated with pentax, nor am i trying to hurt william optics sales of their dcl-28. I was not trying to offend anyone that owns the dcl-28 eyepiece. I simply thought the swarovski fixed eyepiece would produce better pics, perhaps it will not.
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