CGEM-DX... any thoughts?
Posted 27 February 2011 - 10:05 AM
"I also doubt people would be willing to pay what Celestron would have to charge to continue production..."
...in California, USA, one of the most expensive places to do business on Earth.
Now instead of the CGEM and CGE Pro, what if they (a) updated the CGE to cure its poor RA and Dec cable socket/board design, and (b) set up shop manufacturing improved/updated CGEs in one of the lowest cost places to do business on Earth?
Maybe offer an improved CGE with CGE capacity for a *lower* price than when the mount was made in the US? A more reliable, modestly updated, $2000 CGE could have become *the* mount for anyone unable or unwilling to pay the Tak or A-P price for like capacity. Probably woulda been the end 'o Losmandy too, which would have helped Celestron's marketshare numbers in the long term.
While I wouldn't call the CGEM DX a "marketing ploy" I would say that it's somewhat ill conceived. One of the nicest things about Atlas-class mounts is decent portability for their capacity. The CGEM is simply the combination of a 45# capacity EQ head with a tripod designed for a 90# capacity mount. The problem with this approach is that the otherwise transport friendly CGEM becomes a CGE-class pain in the tail to schlep around, but without the reward of the CGE's capacity. The tripod alone weighs 40#. Dat's just nutz.
Also, I don't think the dimensions of the CGEM head vs. the CGE head are as relevant as the difference in the mass of those two heads. I haven't put my mount heads on a scale yet, but SOTP I suspect the CGE head has a lot heavier metal. At least that's what my back tells me when I set it up.
We'll know its "ill conceived" when it's in the hands of consumers. Till then neither you nor I know how it will be received or how well it will work. One thing I do know...the CGE is history. Would it have been nice to see a CGE II for about the same price as the original? One with internal cabling and other improvements and fewer faux pas? Yes.
Have you hefted a CGE Pro? The problem for us old geezers ain't the tripod. Or at least not only the tripod.
Posted 02 March 2011 - 03:09 PM
1) It's not the ultimate mount. I'd really like a Paramount MX, but I can't afford it.
2) I won't get a whole lot of money by selling my existing CGEM for under $1,000.
3) I don't have the same expectation of quality coming from Celestron that I would if I could afford a TEC scope from YURI.
4) It might have problems, but at least my good buddy Dean over at S*@&!%0_@ was nice enought to give it a once over before shipping it to me,
5) If I were King Celestron for a day, I might have taken a different approach by offering an electronics and tripod update option, and would have engineered some different 'innards' and sold it for around $2,500.
All that being said, I can't wait for it to get here. I'm certain it will perform well for me and my humble 5" refractor.
I'll let you know how well it works out soon..