14.5" Starmaster with ServoCat and Argo Navis 1966 Unitron 4" Model 152 EQ Tec 140 TV NP101 f/5.4 APO Telvue .8 Focal Reducer FLI ML8300 and CFW-2-7 filter wheel Astrodon Gen2 RGBL 2" filters Baader 2" Narrow Band Filters Borg 50mm Guide Scope/ATIK Titan Guide Camera AstroPhysics AP900 Losmandy GM-8 Gemini
Austin www.austingrantphotography.com www.flickr.com/bentonastronomy
World Explorer, Satellite Development, and all that...
LX850 & Astronomy blog: http://lx850.tumblr.com
Ok, equipment list…for reference purposes only!
…Missing my RV-6. Why oh why did I sell it?!?!?!?
14" Meade LX850 80mm Meade 6000 ED APO 90mm Meade ETX 60mm Focal (First Telescope) Orion MiniGiant 9x63 Mallincam Xtreme EXview HAD Canon 5D Mark II Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L Canon 24-105mm f/4L
Uncle Rod Uncle Rod's Astroblog: http://uncle-rods.blogspot.com/
Quote:AP and Tak are "mid price"?! Not around here.
They are if you include companies like Planewave.
Others may disagree. Your millage may vary. Void where prohibited by law.
Quote:Cheaper than what a lot of people spend ricing up their cars..A single long Canon white lens or a flagship DSLR can cost more than a Mach1. Heck I have a macro lens that costs more than all my scopes put together - and it's considered a midrange lens.
Quote:OK, I admit it. I commented in haste before doping out the Meade website, which is divided rather sharply between an informational site and an online store. As I continue to daydream about how to spend lots of money that I don't have now but expect to have once we recover from our kids' college years, I guess I will now have to headscratch the relative merits of the Meade ACF-SCTs vs. the Celestron EdgeHD.So Meade DOES have GEM mounts, but their poduct line has GEMs at the entry level (LX80) and the very high end (LX850) and forks in the middle (LX90, LX200, and LX600). By contrast, the Celestron line is more GEM-heavy, with only the CPC series having fork mounts. I now perceive that my partiality toward Celestron comes from the fact that I am partial to GEMs, and Celestron has more to offer in the mid-price range were I will probably buy. Will the astro-gods strike me down for blasphemy if I mate a Meade OTA to a Celestron mount?
Quote:My first rule for this is "no second mortgages to pay for astronomy." So I think that lets AP and PlaneWave off the hook. iOptron looks like a real possibility though.
Quote:I am with Rod... A-P is not midrange.
Dave Jessie Outreach Events
Quote:If AP could produce an HC with the go-to accuracy of the NexStar, I could be convinced. 10K still doesn't spell mid-range, though, not for most of us peons.
Quote:The Lightswitch I understand also has excellent goto accuracy compared to the NexStar (heck, so does my LX200). So it can been done cheaper.
http://www.faintfuzzy.net Stuff C14, C8, Orion XX14i, Meade 8" ACF, AT6RC, AT102ED, Orion ED80, PST, AP1600GTO, CGE, CG5, ST10-XME/CFW8, QHY8PRO, Optec TCF-s, Microtouch Focuser, Pyxis LE, Hyperstar for C8.
I lost count of my scopes. Now I just want mobility. I came, I saw, I bought some interesting accessories, and put names to faces: NEAF 2012, ASAE 2012, SWAP 2013, ASAE 2013.
Quote:I'm not understanding what you are pricing in these numbers.An LX850 is $6K at OPT. A Mach 1 GTO is $6.35k, and an AP 1100 is $8800.What's the $4500 mount and what's the $10K mount?-Rich
Quote:Better than AP, but only if your scope is not orthogonal (if your scope is orthogonal, AP goto is extremely accurate).
Quote:This "the Mach1 goes over 10k..." always pops up.Not really. To add the (basic) stuff to a Mach1 like a saddle, counterweights, tripod, power supply.. will take it to about $7K. The biggest cost there is the tripod, because AP's tripods are expensive. But as I've pointed out, an $80 Celestron Ultima tripod works without modification.What else is missing.. a guide scope and stand-alone guider. A Lacerta MGEN is about $600. Even a pretty swanky guide scope is going to be less than $400. So figure $1K for that. I don't imagine a GPS as being terribly useful, but the $130 StarGPS works with AP mounts.We're still a long way from $10K...
Quote:This "the Mach1 goes over $10K..." myth always pops up.
Quote:If you use an SCT, like I do, you can purty much bet you will be slightly less than orthogonal every time due to the moving mirror.
Quote:Seems that there isn't any $2000 range mount with better mechanicals than the ubiquitous Atlas and CGEM.
LX850 blog: www.LX-850.com
personal website: www.wadsworthobservatory.com
Quote:Arguably, a CGE with modernized connectors (i.e. Bennett mod as "stock") would be a slam dunk.
Quote:I would actually disagree that going with 3rd-party suppliers for AP gear is a "can't afford it" symptom. As DaveJ said above "I'm too poor to buy cheap" - I wish I had known that before buying a collection of less-expensive mounts.. (that added up to the price of a Mach1)Robin Casady saddles are better than AP saddles. Ditto for his weights. Rob Miller tripods are better (and cheaper) than the AP equivalents. And so on..(too bad Rob Miller can't be contacted anymore, and Robin Casady is closing down his business)In my case, the only part I skimped on was the tripod, as even a Rob Miller is $1000 plus (and that's cheaper than AP). A Losmandy G11 HD tripod works fine with the Mach1 - I would not consider it "skimping" but I didn't go there as the Losmandy tripod is too heavy for me. A Berlebach Uni is another option, or a Planet if the load requires it.AP is not always the best for the rest of the bits - but they certainly get my money for the mount itself.But then my payload is small, and the Celestron Ultima tripod works fine for it. So why even bother with an AP then.. because you can't get that level of performance (sub-arcsecond corrected PE and non-existent declination guiding issues) in any mount smaller than the Mach1.One other issue (aside from all the Meade doom and gloom) is that the LX850 bare mount is extremely heavy. Even if it was $3000 and Meade was a billion-dollar company with healthy profits I wouldn't buy one, for that sole reason.