TAKAHASHI UW EYEPIECES
Takahashi have introduced four new eyepieces with extraordinary fields of view
The table above shows parameters for the four medium and high power eyepieces, of 10mm, 7mm, 5.7mm and 3.3mm respectively.
I did some field tests using a FS-128 refractor, with a half-moon and Jupiter both being prominent. The tests were principally using the 10mm and 3.3mm eyepieces, though all were tried during the tests:
Using the 3.3mm, and comparing to the Tak HI-Le 3.6mm, the view of the planet was similar in resolution, contrast and brightness (often there is a loss of brightness in multi-element wide field eyepieces, but I could detect no loss of brightness with the UW-3.3). With four moons visible, the three inner moons one side and Ganymede quite far out on the other side, it was so very nice to see all four in the same field at such a high power (over 300x). I moved the planet from the centre of the field across to the edge. With the ultra-wide eyepiece I wanted to see what distortions occurred at the edges of the field, but WOW, just like the wonderful LE range of eyepieces it gave a beautiful flat field all across the visible view. I was quite amazed that Takahashi have managed to achieve this in the UW, with no change of resolution, no distortion, no changes of brightness, and in fact no detectable abberations whatever. I consider this to be a major achievement. What is more the UW eyepieces, retaining 1.25" barrels, are refreshingly lightweight.
I used all the eyepieces to observe the moon, and yet again, I was continually blown away by the fact that the whole visible field was totally uniform, being razor-sharp at the edges as well as in the centre, and zero detectable distortion of any type. Either getting the whole diameter at over 100x using the LE-10, or very considerable areas using the UW-3.3 at over 300x, was especially pleasing. At no time did I observe any evidence of ghosting or internal reflections on any of the UW eyepieces, and they performed as well as the LE equivalents (HI-LE3.6, LE5, LE7.5 and LE10) in terms of resolution, contrast and brightness)
It looked very similar in the UW-3.3 and the HI-LE3.6 I critically tried to see if one was better than the other, but both split the components very easily and cleanly.
With no GO-TO, using a Tak EM-2 mount, I have to rely on star-hopping to find objects. With the trapezium as the reference point one usually has to use a low power (eg LE-30) eyepiece to find the stars either side, then go up in power to get the desired object in view. This time however, the UW-10 was able to get the side stars and M57 in the field all together, so I just had to drop in the UW-5.7 to get best view. With the amount of moonlight around I could not see the faint stars nearby, but the lesson learnt was that the UW eyepieces will be a HUGE help at getting faint objects in the field of view, cutting down precious search time!
The UW eyepieces come in a nice plastic container, and the usual Tak 'blue' carton
Wondrous news, end caps are supplied - a first for Tak after all these years!
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