Return to the Cloudy Nights Telescope Reviews home pageAstronomics discounts for Cloudy Nights members
· Get a Cloudy Nights T-Shirt · Submit a Review / Article

Click here if you are having trouble logging into the forums

Privacy Policy | Please read our Terms of Service | Signup and Troubleshooting FAQ | Problems? PM a Red or a Green Gu… uh, User

Equipment Discussions >> Cats & Casses

Pages: << 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77 | >> (show all)
Starhawk
Space Ranger
*****

Reged: 09/16/08

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Spacetravelerx]
      #5986602 - 07/23/13 06:51 PM

I think the comment on the ACF SCTs was mainly towards having three variants of the same product, not whether it was possible to make them, but rather if there was enough of a market to stock three different parts sets and have three different assembly lines to keep straight and keep running.

-Rich

Quote:

Quote:

As Edd and others have pointed out amateur astronomy is a tough marketplace today no matter how you slice it up so any new or re organized company is going to have to execute well in all areas. The days of carrying poorly performing products on the backs of better performing ones is over.

.....





mclewis - excellent post from the Great White North!


A couple of questions though. You indicate
Quote:

having F8, ACF10 and traditional F10 SCT optics is going to be tough. Unless there is some compelling manufacturing cost benefits I can see the traditional SCT optics going away and the ACF slotted into the same price points.


Why do you see the traditional SCT going away? I have to tell you I really like the the F/8 ACF optics on my LX850. Celestron certainly sells traditional SCT optics still. Do you see everything going to Celestron Edge HD?

The ED refractor market place is crowded, I agree. However I have to say I am very impressed with the imported Meade ED APO 6000 series. So impressed I will now purchase the 130 mm to go with the 80mm. I think it is just a matter of marketing, word of mouth, etc. Also, I do see a market for these units - high quality views that are still grab and go level (well up to maybe 5-6"). These do NOT beat the view of my 14" f/8 ACF, but it will get used more around the countryside. Why can't Meade compete in this market?

Great write up!




Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: starrancher]
      #5986604 - 07/23/13 06:52 PM

Quote:

I've also learned substantially more of where things are in the night sky post Go-To than I ever did pre Go-To . Why ? Instead of concentrating on coordinates and setting circles , I could sit back , watching the Go-To slew , while actually paying attention to the sky and where the scope was pointing .




When you are using setting circles, you are basically pointing the telescope without needing to learn or understand the particular part of the sky where the object is located. The goal is to find a particular object, GOTO just automates this process.

When I began, I used the setting circles on my Orange tube C-8 to navigate the night sky but soon realized that had no idea exactly where the telescope was pointed. I tried several different finder schemes and mountings but I eventually discovered the joys of starhopping with a shorter focal length telescope and was soon I was having much more fun stargazing. I was learning the sky the way I wanted to, I knew exactly where the scope was pointing and I slowly developed the ability to find new objects and remember how to find the old ones.

As they say, practice makes perfect and star hopping provides a great deal of practice.

My purpose in this short diatribe is not to justify or sell the virtues of star hopping but rather it is to simply point out that each of takes our pleasures in different ways. When I began this hobby, all I wanted to do was walk out on a clear night with a simple telescope and look around to see what I could see. I have better equipment, my understanding and knowledge of the equipment and the night sky are far better but I am still doing the same thing, just going out and looking around for some neat stuff.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Starhawk
Space Ranger
*****

Reged: 09/16/08

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5986636 - 07/23/13 07:12 PM

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
nitegeezer
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 11/27/07

Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Starhawk]
      #5986649 - 07/23/13 07:23 PM

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich




It is then nice to slew to that object, have them look through the scope and verify that is the correct object, and then have the controller identify it with a name. This is a great learning tool.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Spacetravelerx
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 12/23/12

Loc: New Mexico
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Starhawk]
      #5986655 - 07/23/13 07:29 PM

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich




Well it depends on the age group and the setting.

I had a group of younger Boy Scouts who wanted to explore the Messier list that would be visible from Chaco Canyon. I handed them the controller and they were at the telescope all night.

But you guys did bring back some memories for me.

When I was younger (between 8-12) I loved to recreate my own star charts by hand. Quite accurate too (I am surprised looking back on it). When I was a little older I had my own astro-newsletter and drew star charts for the month on Mimeo graph paper (don't you miss that fresh chemical smell?).

My favorite book back in the day, heck even now? "A Primer for Star-Gazers", by Henry M. Neely. Here I learned how to find things in the sky, star hop and recognize patterns like the "Kite in Auriga" and the "Baseball Game in the Sky" - Cygnus, Lrya, and Aquila. Great charts, stories and time tables.

I was so excited, asked for, and got, that "Research Grade" Orthoscopic from Meade. Now I was ready for the big boys!

Still, I love my gotos! However learning the heavens and such I do still just use my eyes to look up, and it is helpful when navigating by night on the high seas and I want a break from the electronic charts.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Starhawk]
      #5986708 - 07/23/13 08:15 PM

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich





That's fine but not everybody is interested in just "easy, bright, pretty, visual."


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Starhawk]
      #5986713 - 07/23/13 08:18 PM

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich





My experience is a bit different with my grandkids. They say let's look at the Horsehead nebula or something else they found on the ipad. I punch it in on the HC, the scope slews to it, we wait 30 seconds or so, and it pops up on the video monitor (Mallincam user). They say hey it looks just like the picture on my ipad. When they look through the eyepiece they say I don't see anything.

Without GOTO it takes a quality sorely lacking today, to get a kid hooked....patience.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: rmollise]
      #5986739 - 07/23/13 08:37 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich





That's fine but not everybody is interested in just "easy, bright, pretty, visual."





"Easy, bright and pretty" is nice way to begin. Science is about discovery, about observing the world around you. Pointing a telescope at something interesting, that is what scientists do, that is what children often do. Curiosity is the cornerstone of science, hey, what is that? what did I see.

As one develops one's skills, the challenges become more difficult, the objects fainter, the objects smaller more difficult to locate, more difficult to see.

Some relish the challenge of locating and observing those faint object and choose equipment that is optimized for such pursuits, some find it frustrating, uninteresting and choose to depend on electronics to navigate their way around the night sky.

Either way is fine.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
drakeSPR4
newbie


Reged: 07/01/13

Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5986774 - 07/23/13 08:56 PM


http://www.meade.com/nasdaq/sec/Schedule-14A.pdf

..On January 18, 2013, the board held a special meeting. Mr. Elwood reported that the Company’s financial
condition continued to deteriorate due to, among other things, the Company’s inability to finalize the
development of its planned new products and the steep reduction of sales of its existing products in the 2013
fiscal year. Mr. Elwood also reported that the Company continued to lose money quarter after quarter and
expected a loss of approximately $1 million in the fourth quarter. In addition, he noted that, except for its
working capital line of credit secured by its receivables, the Company had no other financing. Furthermore, due
to the Company’s recurring losses and inability to reduce its cost structure sufficiently to offset the reduction in
revenues, no additional financing could be obtained.

...In addition, if the merger is not consummated, and a transaction with another party is not consummated in a
timely manner, Meade may not be able to continue...

Payments and Benefits upon Termination of Employment. Meade has entered into employment
agreements with its executive officers that provide for severance payments and other benefits in the event of
specified terminations of the executive officer’s employment.

Steven G. Murdock. We are party to an employment agreement with Mr. Murdock, our Chief
Executive Officer and a director. In the event that the Company terminates his employment without “cause”
or Mr. Murdock resigns for “good reason,” he will be entitled to a lump sum payment equal to twelve
months base salary (currently, $250,000) plus funds equal to the aggregate amount of the Company
sponsored portion of his group medical and dental insurance coverage for a period of 18 months (or if
longer, the period between termination and August 4, 2016).

John A. Elwood. We are party to an employment agreement with Mr. Elwood, our Senior Vice
President-Finance and Administration, Chief Financial Officer and Secretary. In the event that the Company
terminates his employment without “cause” or Mr. Elwood resigns for “good reason,” he will be entitled to
a lump sum payment equal to twelve months base salary (currently, $170,000) plus funds equal to the
aggregate amount of the Company sponsored portion of his group medical and dental insurance coverage for
a period of 18 months...

Golden Parachute Compensation

Executive Officers
Steven G. Murdock Severance payment $326,500(a) Payment in restricted stock - $ — $284,175(c)(d) Total -$610,675.00
John A. Elwood Severance payment $186,500(b) Payment in restricted stock - $ — $189,450(c)(e) Total -$375,950.00


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
tim53
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 12/17/04

Loc: Highland Park, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5986824 - 07/23/13 09:22 PM

Quote:

Quote:

...and the person who invents a cheap, aftermarket GoTo kit for various models/weights/types of scopes will make a fortune...the key being easy to install and affordable; if it will be stable enough for AP would be a big bonus (maybe a more expensive, better geared unit).




Mel Bartels provided inexpensive computerized telescope control systems to the amateur community for some years...

BBAstro Designs

I think he kept his day job.

Jon




Like


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
mclewis1
Thread Killer
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Spacetravelerx]
      #5986902 - 07/23/13 09:52 PM

Quote:

Why do you see the traditional SCT going away? I have to tell you I really like the the F/8 ACF optics on my LX850. Celestron certainly sells traditional SCT optics still. Do you see everything going to Celestron Edge HD?



Andrew, As Rich also mentioned above ... it's about the cost of maintaining the manufacturing and product marketing for 3 different types of SCTs. Meade is likely going to be asked to pare back even more and I suggest that this may be one area that would save them some money without having much negative impact.

It might even be a positive move for Meade to go with f10 ACFs as the baseline SCT configuration. Assuming they don't cost much more to manufacture than the traditional SCTs it would be a nice differentiator for Meade. f10 ACFs as the baseline and f8s as the "premium" product would be a great position against Celestron's traditional and EdgeHD line up.


Quote:

The ED refractor market place is crowded, I agree. However I have to say I am very impressed with the imported Meade ED APO 6000 series. ... Why can't Meade compete in this market?



I think Meade can certainly compete in this market ... but what does it cost them to do so? Like my argument about the traditional SCTs if you have to simplify a portfolio where would it make sense?

I think for a while at least that Meade shouldn't position itself as all things to all people (yes I know that's a gross generalization ... but I hope folks get the analogy). If I was Meade I'd simplify the product portfolio and concentrate on execution. Over time good execution will rebuild the dealer and brand loyalty and only then I'd look at carefully broadening the portfolio and target markets. The real problem is securing the operating capital for that lean rebuilding period.

Edited by mclewis1 (07/23/13 10:17 PM)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
derangedhermit
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 10/07/09

Loc: USA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: A. Viegas]
      #5986922 - 07/23/13 09:59 PM

Quote:

As for the romantic and relaxed attitude of just star hopping and casual eyepiece observing... sure there is plenty of appeal to do it among the older set of amateurs out there, and just like afficionados of horse drawn buggies, i am sure there is a small niche market of dire-hard consumers who only buy genuine Amish leather to retrofit their circa 1840 carriage...

Al



Why be a hater?


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Starhawk
Space Ranger
*****

Reged: 09/16/08

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: rmollise]
      #5986967 - 07/23/13 10:20 PM

At ages 5 and 7, that goes quite a ways, though.

-Rich

Quote:

Quote:

I've noticed something like what Jon is talking about with my little kids. They point up in the sky and say, "Let's look at that!"

I've never heard, "Let's look at the list on the controller!" Well, after it became clear it would guide you to lots of barely discernible smudges in the urban night sky.

-Rich





That's fine but not everybody is interested in just "easy, bright, pretty, visual."





Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Calypte
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 03/20/07

Loc: Anza, California
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Starhawk]
      #5987117 - 07/23/13 11:38 PM

Meade: Meade is toast. This is more than just my personal opinion. I'll leave it at that. I'll be very surprised if Meade even survives as a brand name. One of our club members had a brand-new 10-inch LX600 at our most recent star party. The go-to system worked perfectly, and the optics were very good. Saturn was sharper than through my 2001-vintage LX200, even with the larger central obstruction. I didn't have the heart to tell him that Meade's days are numbered, and he'll probably be SOL for any important warranty work. He was having fun with his new scope. Why spoil the evening?

Go-to scopes: I'm not sure that comparisons of push-to scopes to the Amish and buggy whips are apropos. Some people do, in fact, like horses; some like stick-shift cars; some like manually-set cameras; some like looking at celestial objects through telecopes with plain old eyeballs, even though HST pictures might make it pointless. For me, go-to has been an invaluable asset to imaging (which I got into when I realized that my eyesight was deteriorating). I also have push-to scopes, and I can't say that I enjoy them less than I did years ago. In other words, the journey is at least as important as the goal.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: mclewis1]
      #5987135 - 07/23/13 11:49 PM

Quote:


I think Meade can certainly compete in this market ... but what does it cost them to do so? Like my argument about the traditional SCTs if you have to simplify a portfolio where would it make sense?




Meade is playing catch up in this market and I have to think that if they are cutting back, this is one place to do it. Companies like William Optics, StellarVue, Orion, Skywatcher, Astro-Tech, TMB, cover the ranges where Meade might compete and these companies have established product lines and reputations in the refractor community.

The current Meade line consists of an 80mm FPL-53 triplet and 115mm and 130m HK-61 triplets, that's tough competition when there are others with similar triplets for far less, the ES-127 looks to be less than the Meade 115.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
EFT
Vendor - Deep Space Products
*****

Reged: 05/07/07

Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5987274 - 07/24/13 01:46 AM

Quote:

Quote:


I think Meade can certainly compete in this market ... but what does it cost them to do so? Like my argument about the traditional SCTs if you have to simplify a portfolio where would it make sense?




Meade is playing catch up in this market and I have to think that if they are cutting back, this is one place to do it. Companies like William Optics, StellarVue, Orion, Skywatcher, Astro-Tech, TMB, cover the ranges where Meade might compete and these companies have established product lines and reputations in the refractor community.

The current Meade line consists of an 80mm FPL-53 triplet and 115mm and 130m HK-61 triplets, that's tough competition when there are others with similar triplets for far less, the ES-127 looks to be less than the Meade 115.

Jon




I agree that it would be foolish for Meade to continue to try to compete in the refractor market unless they moved things in house. Meade was not making any of their refractors but instead buying them from Chinese manufacturers who were more than willing to sell them to other people directly. I had one of the non-Meade branded triplets that I got directly from the manufacturer and could have gotten many more if I didn't mind dealing with there different business practices. The optics were good, the mechanics were subpar compared to a number of other well-priced manufacturers out there. These same manufacturers of Meade scopes were very willing to sell to other dealers at prices that allowed the scopes to be sold at prices below Meade's prices, so if you didn't mind not have the Meade name you could easily purchase the same scope elsewhere, even in Meade's colors (and sometimes with Meade's logos). In the last few years a number of other Meade products like the LXD75 were also available directly from the manufacturers and prices lower than Meade's and some of them even came with Meade's name on them. That is one of the dangers of relying on the Chinese manufacturers. If you don't buy enough of their product, they may simply sell it out from under you. Thus, Meade lost market share by some of its own "products" being sold directly to others who resold it at prices lower than Meade's. Part of the downward spiral.

To continue to sell scopes that are made by others with no particular loyalty and substantially lower profit margins than products made in house would simply be a waste. Whoever ends up with Meade will need to build on products produced in-house for a while so that they can concentrate on quality and profit. If they simply jump back into the rat race of selling a bunch of stuff made by other manufacturers (Chinese, Indian, Taiwanese, Korean, etc.) then they won't be around for long. This is not a get rich business by any means. Meade went for the get rich quick track with the IPO and cheap imported products made by others and that was ultimately their downfall.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Spacetravelerx
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 12/23/12

Loc: New Mexico
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: EFT]
      #5987316 - 07/24/13 02:46 AM

Quote:



I agree that it would be foolish for Meade to continue to try to compete in the refractor market unless they moved things in house. Meade was not making any of their refractors but instead buying them from Chinese manufacturers who were more than willing to sell them to other people directly. I had one of the non-Meade branded triplets that I got directly from the manufacturer and could have gotten many more if I didn't mind dealing with there different business practices. The optics were good, the mechanics were subpar compared to a number of other well-priced manufacturers out there. These same manufacturers of Meade scopes were very willing to sell to other dealers at prices that allowed the scopes to be sold at prices below Meade's prices, so if you didn't mind not have the Meade name you could easily purchase the same scope elsewhere, even in Meade's colors (and sometimes with Meade's logos). In the last few years a number of other Meade products like the LXD75 were also available directly from the manufacturers and prices lower than Meade's and some of them even came with Meade's name on them. That is one of the dangers of relying on the Chinese manufacturers. If you don't buy enough of their product, they may simply sell it out from under you. Thus, Meade lost market share by some of its own "products" being sold directly to others who resold it at prices lower than Meade's. Part of the downward spiral.

To continue to sell scopes that are made by others with no particular loyalty and substantially lower profit margins than products made in house would simply be a waste. Whoever ends up with Meade will need to build on products produced in-house for a while so that they can concentrate on quality and profit. If they simply jump back into the rat race of selling a bunch of stuff made by other manufacturers (Chinese, Indian, Taiwanese, Korean, etc.) then they won't be around for long. This is not a get rich business by any means. Meade went for the get rich quick track with the IPO and cheap imported products made by others and that was ultimately their downfall.





EFT...

Have you tried the Meade Series 6000 ED APO Refractors?

Yes built in China and this model has a variation in Europe and elsewhere (Altair Wave I believe).

I have the Meade 6000 80mm APO. I dispute your claim the mechanics are subpar. Optics seem very good to me for the price. Yes, the high end and way more expensive models are built in house in the U.S. and Japan, but I did not find the leap in the systems worth the price or necessary for my requirements. And most folks could not afford those models. I think I read reviews in CN where the class of refractors Meade is in does compete very well.

Are you suggesting Meade compete at the very high end only? Or bail out? Can they build in-house for a price that will compete with Chinese manufacturers?

BTW - I don't think Meade ever made eyepieces in house, yet have sold them for eternity. Should they get out of the eyepiece biz too? I have to say I really like my HD-60s and UWA ep.

Yes, I do agree with the issue of Chinese manufacturers - this is really a bigger issue related to the entire industry. On the flip side most folks like the lower prices and China seems to be subsidizing our hobby.

Doesn't Synta/Celestron do the same practice you mention?

Should Orion also get out of this biz and build in house? Doesn't Astronomics also sub out the work to Chinese companies for some systems? Isn't China just dumping optics where ever they can?

Either way, most folks like lower cost so I can't see this model changing regretfully. And this is not a get rich business for the most part - the phrase others use, "Cottage Industry" fits it well. I think you are asking for major changes in the entire industry.


I do love my little Meade APO so much I am planning to pull the trigger and buy the 130mm APO from Meade when I am back from my next travel run. Folks seem very happy with this Telescope. Should I just buy it from China? Are there other very similar models AVAILABLE in this price/size? Most places seem to be out of stock. Of course based on my consulting rates, if I spent a lot of time hunting around that will be lost time/money and then it is just cheaper to get the Meade APO in the end. Reviews, pictures taken etc of this telescope seem quite good.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
gmartin02
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 04/11/05

Loc: Santa Clarita, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Spacetravelerx]
      #5987368 - 07/24/13 04:33 AM

Quote:

I do love my little Meade APO so much I am planning to pull the trigger and buy the 130mm APO from Meade when I am back from my next travel run. Folks seem very happy with this Telescope. Should I just buy it from China? Are there other very similar models AVAILABLE in this price/size? Most places seem to be out of stock. Of course based on my consulting rates, if I spent a lot of time hunting around that will be lost time/money and then it is just cheaper to get the Meade APO in the end. Reviews, pictures taken etc of this telescope seem quite good.




Actually, there is another telescope comparable to the Meade 130 APO:

The Explore Scientific ES127 (currently in stock at OPT).
The mechanics are similar, and the ED element used in this triplet (Hoya FCD1) is very similar to the one used in the Meade scope (FK61). It also comes with a comparable set of accessories to the Meade.

The ES127 is also $1300 dollars less than the Meade 130 - a much better value (or you can get the carbon fiber version, also in stock at OPT, for $500 less than the Meade). The ES APO triplets are probably the best value in the segment, and have a good reputation.

Also, ES has a 5 year warranty compared to the 1 year offered by Meade. Their customer service is also highly regarded.

If it makes you feel any better, Scott Roberts who runs ES worked at Meade for over 20 years prior to starting ES.

It appears that you have plenty of time to research telescopes - otherwise, how did you find the time to write almost 500 posts on these forums in the last 6 months? It is really OK to research and buy scopes from manufacturers other than Meade.

Heck - since you are such a person of means (you have reminded us of this in many of your posts), why not look at something that is higher quality and more befitting of your opulence, such as the Takahashi TSA-120 (also in stock at OPT). It is a little less aperture, but has "world class" optics (and FPL-53 ED glass), and is a lot lighter.

You know what they say - "Once you go Tak, you never go back".

Greg


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Spacetravelerx]
      #5987417 - 07/24/13 07:05 AM

Quote:

I have the Meade 6000 80mm APO. I dispute your claim the mechanics are subpar. Optics seem very good to me for the price. Yes, the high end and way more expensive models are built in house in the U.S. and Japan, but I did not find the leap in the systems worth the price or necessary for my requirements. And most folks could not afford those models. I think I read reviews in CN where the class of refractors Meade is in does compete very well.




Andrew:

Of Meade's three current ED/apo refractors, the 80mm F/6 FPL-53 Triplet appears to be the best value as well as the best scope. But it costs $1000 where as the same basic scope but with a carbon fiber tube costs $850 from Orion. That's a tough sell for Meade. They may have a reputation of SCTs but in the refractor world, Orion has been a leader in bringing affordable apo's to the amateur community and Orion does have a reputation for excellent customer service.

The two larger Meade Series 6000 ED/apo's both use the Chinese HK-61 which is very similar in properties if not quality to FPL-51. This is the less expensive ED glass, doesn't have the desirable properties of FPL-53.

As Greg pointed out, the ES-127 with optics that should be very similar to the Meade 130 is $1300 less. But even more surprising is the fact that the ES-127 is $300 less than the Meade 115.

I think the refractor marketplace is unique, there are small companies that specialize in bringing the Asian scopes to the marketplace, these companies have reputations and a customer base that Meade just does not have. People pay big money for these scopes. When you look at the specs and see a 130mm ED/apo scope for $3000 it looks attractive compared to something like the 130 TMB that costs $4000. But when you figure out that the TMB was designed by Thomas Back but it uses top of the line FPL-53 rather than Chinese HK-61, suddenly it doesn't seem like such a great value and then when you figure out that ES is offering the 127 for considerably less, well, it's a hard sell.

This is market Meade has always struggled in and one that they seem poorly suited for. Customers are picky and knowledgeable, they know the buzzwords...

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Glen A W
sage


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: WEST VIRGINIA USA
Re: The plot thickens (Meade takeover) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5987464 - 07/24/13 08:03 AM

The biggest trouble I can see faced by Meade or any company like it is that no matter what electronics are attached to the scope to point it, it still delivers pretty much the same thing as telescopes have delivered for several centuries - and that is not enough for most people in the general public to spend very much money.

Most people would be hard-pressed to spend $300 on a telescope. The ETX-80 which you can get for that is not the worst but it's not enough to hold interest for most people. And then when it points to a star in Cassiopeia during the alignment, and the new user can't tell which of those five stars the scope is pointing at, because they are all the same brightness and the tube is so short and there's no finder - now, how long is this going to be entertaining?

There are those who will become so involved in the equipment that they will enjoy the hobby, but I think it is safe to say that it is a very small segment of the general population. And a lot of what is in amateur astronomy today is just like the rest of society - people pecking on machines like they are on speed, and seemingly getting little out of the actual purpose of the activity. But I suppose, if it suits them, then it has its own purpose for them. But I often feel like I want to stay far far away from these walking talking caffeinated energy drinks.

Most people are interested in "space" and "the Universe." But amateur astronomy is not the same thing as all that. Clubs would do better on their outreach if they would stress these general topics and not "amateur astronomy," which so often means "telescope consuming and obsessing." I think some people in this hobby have no concept of how it is viewed by the public. The public also likes mythology which is attached to the constellations, and astrology. A company which wants to grow large and become more than a cottage industry should look into all this.

Meade had a lot of marketing, but it was not so intelligent as some say. Not compared, say, to Edmund fifty years ago, which obviously understood what a more general swath of the public wanted. GW


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: << 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77 | >> (show all)


Extra information
3 registered and 12 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  Cotts, Starman27, kkokkolis 

Print Thread

Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is disabled
      UBBCode is enabled


Thread views: 63062

Jump to

CN Forums Home


Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics