According to Meade's website their ACF optics reduces field curvature.
Interesting. Can you point me to where it says that? I couldn't find the reference. All that is mentioned at www.meade.com/acf is the reduced coma--nothing about curvature.
Other owners running tests with different size scopes and different cameras get different CCDInspector results. Look here, for example:
Of course, this is an f/8 model with a larger chip, so I would expect field curvature to be worse than the example previously given
It's not a flat field scope. It's a coma free scope. I can't find anything other than hearsay that shows reduced field curvature. Not even Meade's own marketing literature--at least what I could find on their website--suggests reduced curvature.
They've changed their website and it's not on the first page like it used to be. Still, there is a reference to "flatter field" on several pages. Here is one explaining the ACF design: http://www.meade.com/history
I've copied the text below:
Advanced Coma-Free optical system, the first affordable optics delivering Ritchey-Chrétien-like performance, in 2005. A traditional Ritchey-Chrétien (RC) is a type of reflector that delivers a coma-free view via hyperbolic primary and secondary mirrors. Because the mirrors in these telescopes have always been very expensive to make, few amateur astronomers could enjoy them. Suspecting that there was a better way to design this optical system, Meade engineers developed a radical new Advanced Coma-Free design by combining a hyperbolic secondary mirror with a corrector-lens-and-spherical-primary-mirror combination that performs as one hyperbolic element. This ACF design produces a coma-free, flatter field of view that equals traditional RC telescopes at a fraction of the cost. The design also eliminates diffraction spikes and improves astigmatism, both of which are inherent in the traditional RC design. No other optical design delivers both the level of performance and affordability as ACF.