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cwilson
super member


Reged: 10/01/12

Loc: SW Oklahoma
Meade LT8-ACF 8" ?
      #5795280 - 04/12/13 07:38 PM

Has anyone here had any experience with this scope? I'm wondering about overall quality, etc.

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gunfighter48
sage
*****

Reged: 03/18/13

Loc: Mill Creek, Washington
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: cwilson]
      #5827547 - 04/28/13 12:02 AM

I don't have the LT8 but do have the LS8 and love it. The quality is very good on the scope and tripod. Everything fits with no gaps or pucker points. The weak spot is the tripod, with the 8" tube it vibrates more than with the 6" tube. This is especially annoying when focusing the image. I spent the extra money and bought the zero image shift focuser. It is well worth the money and cuts the vibrations when focusing to almost nothing. A heavier duty tripod would be nice but the current one works OK for visual astronomy.

The ACF optics are great, very sharp, very good contrast, and provide very good to excellent detail on the planets and moon (depending on seeing conditions of course). I've only had mine out 3 times in the last 5 weeks, so I'm still testing it. But so far I'm very happy with it. I think your LT8 would be worth the purchase.

I replaced the red dot finder with a 9X50 Stellarvue finder and rings on my scope. I can't bend that well anymore so the right angle finder was a must for me. The goto functions just fine with no problems on my scope. I know they had some problems when they first came out but the updated firmware seems to have cured that issue. It's not a bad scope for the money. It's a lot easier to transport than my old 2080 scope. My back appreciates the lower weight of the system!!


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jimb1001
sage
*****

Reged: 11/14/09

Loc: Florida
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: gunfighter48]
      #5829441 - 04/29/13 01:11 AM

Quote:

I don't have the LT8 but do have the LS8 and love it. The quality is very good on the scope and tripod. Everything fits with no gaps or pucker points. The weak spot is the tripod, with the 8" tube it vibrates more than with the 6" tube. This is especially annoying when focusing the image. I spent the extra money and bought the zero image shift focuser. It is well worth the money and cuts the vibrations when focusing to almost nothing. A heavier duty tripod would be nice but the current one works OK for visual astronomy.

The ACF optics are great, very sharp, very good contrast, and provide very good to excellent detail on the planets and moon (depending on seeing conditions of course). I've only had mine out 3 times in the last 5 weeks, so I'm still testing it. But so far I'm very happy with it. I think your LT8 would be worth the purchase.

I replaced the red dot finder with a 9X50 Stellarvue finder and rings on my scope. I can't bend that well anymore so the right angle finder was a must for me. The goto functions just fine with no problems on my scope. I know they had some problems when they first came out but the updated firmware seems to have cured that issue. It's not a bad scope for the money. It's a lot easier to transport than my old 2080 scope. My back appreciates the lower weight of the system!!




How did you mount the Stellarvue finder?

I've got one with the Losmandy base and the thought of mounting it on the LS8 has crossed my mind but I haven't really looked at it.

I took off the Meade finder and replaced it with a much better quality red dot scope using double faced tape. It works OK, especially on the LS8 but I wouldn't mind trying the Stellarvue if it doesn't involve drilling holes.


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geminijk
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 04/03/08

Loc: TN
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: jimb1001]
      #5829447 - 04/29/13 01:22 AM

I have the LS8 ACF too, so sorry, can't say much to the LT. Basically, if your a visual or planetary imager, should be fine. I like the fact that its USB and not DB9 for computer connectivity, should be the same on the LT8.

John


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gunfighter48
sage
*****

Reged: 03/18/13

Loc: Mill Creek, Washington
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: jimb1001]
      #5831094 - 04/29/13 08:56 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I don't have the LT8 but do have the LS8 and love it. The quality is very good on the scope and tripod. Everything fits with no gaps or pucker points. The weak spot is the tripod, with the 8" tube it vibrates more than with the 6" tube. This is especially annoying when focusing the image. I spent the extra money and bought the zero image shift focuser. It is well worth the money and cuts the vibrations when focusing to almost nothing. A heavier duty tripod would be nice but the current one works OK for visual astronomy.

The ACF optics are great, very sharp, very good contrast, and provide very good to excellent detail on the planets and moon (depending on seeing conditions of course). I've only had mine out 3 times in the last 5 weeks, so I'm still testing it. But so far I'm very happy with it. I think your LT8 would be worth the purchase.

I replaced the red dot finder with a 9X50 Stellarvue finder and rings on my scope. I can't bend that well anymore so the right angle finder was a must for me. The goto functions just fine with no problems on my scope. I know they had some problems when they first came out but the updated firmware seems to have cured that issue. It's not a bad scope for the money. It's a lot easier to transport than my old 2080 scope. My back appreciates the lower weight of the system!!




How did you mount the Stellarvue finder?

I've got one with the Losmandy base and the thought of mounting it on the LS8 has crossed my mind but I haven't really looked at it.

I took off the Meade finder and replaced it with a much better quality red dot scope using double faced tape. It works OK, especially on the LS8 but I wouldn't mind trying the Stellarvue if it doesn't involve drilling holes.




When I bought the 9X50 finder I also bought the Stellarvue R50F mounting rings and it came with a base. I took off the old red dot base and went to screw down the new base and found the screws were too short. So a quick trip to the hardware store and got some screws that were too long but it was all they had. So I got out my Dremel tool with a cut off disk and cut the screws to the correct length. The new base had enough adjustment range to use the existing screw holes from the red dot finder. Screwed the base down and mounted the finder scope, worked great. The Stellarvue 9X50 is an excellent scope.


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REC
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: NC
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: gunfighter48]
      #5835839 - 05/02/13 09:12 AM

Any chance you could take a pic of that finder on your scope? I would like to replace that red dot which I find useless. I did buy a dovetail shoe for it from Orion, but the screw holes don't line up and probably need to drill new ones? It would be nice to have a nice RAF on it like yours. In the meantime, I just rely ob the goto which works well most of the time.

Thanks,

Bob


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gunfighter48
sage
*****

Reged: 03/18/13

Loc: Mill Creek, Washington
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: REC]
      #5837612 - 05/03/13 03:04 AM Attachment (33 downloads)

Quote:

Any chance you could take a pic of that finder on your scope? I would like to replace that red dot which I find useless. I did buy a dovetail shoe for it from Orion, but the screw holes don't line up and probably need to drill new ones? It would be nice to have a nice RAF on it like yours. In the meantime, I just rely ob the goto which works well most of the time.

Thanks,

Bob




Here's the Stellarvue 9X50 finder mounted on my LS8. This mount has the long stem and at first I didn't like it. But after using it a few times I like it fine now. Keeps me from bumping my head on it when viewing thru the eyepiece.


Edited by gunfighter48 (05/03/13 03:18 AM)


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REC
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: NC
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: gunfighter48]
      #5840165 - 05/04/13 01:57 PM

That looks great, thanks for posting that. I forgot, how did you get a dovetail shoe for that to mount the scope on it?

Thanks,

Bob


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gunfighter48
sage
*****

Reged: 03/18/13

Loc: Mill Creek, Washington
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: REC]
      #5841092 - 05/05/13 02:40 AM

Quote:

That looks great, thanks for posting that. I forgot, how did you get a dovetail shoe for that to mount the scope on it?

Thanks,

Bob




The dove tail shoe came as part of the mounting rings for the finder scope. The shoe had enough adjustment range to use the screw holes that were for the red dot finder that came with the LS8.


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REC
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: NC
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: gunfighter48]
      #5843134 - 05/06/13 09:25 AM

Oh, you were lucky then and did not have to do any additional drilling. Also, with that show on it, you could probably mount a camera on it to do some piggyback photography.

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cuivienor
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/07/10

Loc: Tokyo, Japan
Re: Meade LT8-ACF 8" ? new [Re: geminijk]
      #5844642 - 05/06/13 10:57 PM

Quote:

I have the LS8 ACF too, so sorry, can't say much to the LT. Basically, if your a visual or planetary imager, should be fine. I like the fact that its USB and not DB9 for computer connectivity, should be the same on the LT8.

John




I'd like to correct that: the LT doesn't have a USB port. The USB port (which is really just an RS232-USB adapter hidden within the mount, you can see those weird drivers installing the first time you connect the scope to the computer) is only on the LS models.

I have owned the LT6 and now own the LS8. Both are excellent, but in the end from my experience with the LT6, I think the LT8 should really be a great scope. I also has much much much better battery life than the LS8 (I tend to think that Meade scopes are very battery friendly, not so with the LS, although disabling the media and the video out, which are on by default, helps).

In terms of quality, I have nothing but good things to say about the LT and LS series, except the tripod, which as others mentioned is a bit wobbly when focusing. The optics are great, the scopes are relatively light, and the mechanics are absolutely awesome in this price range. Goto is always spot on, tracking is so perfect that one member here (Rigel123) managed to do some excellent astrophotography with his LS6, check his older photos on www.rigel123.com - I myself was able to do some halfway decent astrophotos (planetary and deep sky) with 20 to 30 second exposures using both the LT6 and LS8.

In other words, from my experience with both the LT6 and the LS8, I think the LT8 should be an excellent scope, without all the bells and whistles of the LS8 (you'd still get the audo commentaries with AudioStar), but with more battery life.

Cheers,

Yannick


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