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Meade ETX insight please

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#26 thesubwaypusher



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Posted 31 August 2014 - 10:33 PM

Maybe mine is the exception, but I have an ETX 90 that has much less than excellent optics.


It lacks contrast, and has a tiny well illuminated field.


I used it at night a few times, but found it pretty disappointing Vs an 80mm ED refractor.  I know these cost more, but the performace of the 90 was so disappointing to me that it seemed like wasted money by comparision.


I used it at the range, but I had trouble resolving my hits at very long ranges.


I was ready to sell it but the assistant astronomer thinks it is cute.    Has been in her closet for two years now.


Not a fan of the ETX 90.   Just can't come close to matching a good 80ED.   Totally inferrior. Dim and lacking in contrast.


For someone wanting a small scope, I recommend the C5.  Mine side by side with the ETX was far more enjoyable to use.   Oh, I sold it because I was not using it anymore, but of the two, it was far better.



No, something is wrong here. I had a 90 and a couple of 125s and they were optically perfect. I hope you get to try a good one because you of all people would really appreciate it. Tiny Maks at their best. Sorry you came across an inferior sample.

#27 Geo.



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Posted 02 September 2014 - 03:46 PM

Like all catioptics the Mak design loses some ultimate resolution due to the central obstruction, but where else can you get the benefits of a slow refrctor without chromatic aberration and 3 or 4 feet of optical tube for a couple of hundred? I have the 127mm f/12 Celestron Mak (same scope as the Orion Apex) to which I've fitted the ScopeStuff SCT accessory thread adapter. Now all my SCT visual backs, diagonals and accessories fit it. While this design lacks the built in flip mirror/diagonal it is more rugged and versatlle.

#28 caheaton


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Posted 02 September 2014 - 04:09 PM

Just thought I'd chime in with a positive word on the ETX80.  Yes, it's a short focal length refractor and the mount does have some QC issues (I replaced mine under warranty), but it's a fine travel scope and my gotos are very accurate provided I take the time to properly level and point the mount first.  It's the scope that a few years ago brought be back into astronomy after having been absent (as an active observer) for a couple decades.  That summer when it was my sole scope it received heavy use and took me through the entire Messier catalog and then some.  Optics were excellent considering the limitations of it's F ratio.  As a rich field scope or portable scope, it's not a bad instrument.

#29 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 02 September 2014 - 07:19 PM

My ETX Story:


Back when they were relatively new to the marketplace, I purchased both the ETX-70 and the EX-90RA, both were new.  I was quite disappointed in the ETX-70 optics, I had a hard time with Castor, I am not sure I ever split it. It went back once to the factory but there was not improvement. One doesn't buy a scope like this for doubles but I had some expectations that it would handle such an easy target.  


The ETX-90 was quite decent but was out of collimation when I received it so it too had to go back to the factory but it came back collimated.  Like Eddgie, I prefer short focal length ED/apo refractors but one does not buy an 80mm apo for under $200.. The advantage of the ETX-90 is the compactness, when I see one used, I consider it but that first experience with miscollimation has made me gun shy. Plus I don't really need another scope.


I also had an ETX-125, purchased used. For what it was, it was a competent scope, the GOTO worked well and it provided decent high powered views. But in the end, a 5 inch scope with a 1.25 inch focuser and 1900mm focal length was just not for me. Small exit pupils, sdim views and narrow fields of view..  One thing I do remember if you are buying one used, the later versions had sturdier, more robust forks.  I am not sure when the change was made, maybe someone here does. I think the early ones were a bit on the shaky side, not so good for a scope with a 1900mm focal length.



#30 labmand


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Posted 03 September 2014 - 11:17 AM

Jon, thanks for your insight, really enjoy all you have to offer.

Out again last night with my deforked etx90 and it did not disappoint.

I've been so impressed with it that when a etx125 popped up, I could not

Help myself, it's on the way, hope I did not make a mistake, because the

Apex 127 was also looking good and was thinking maybe planning a future

Purchase of one but if this deforked etx125 works out then I'll be a happy camper.

#31 DocFinance



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Posted 04 September 2014 - 04:32 PM

I took both the ETX 90 OTA and the new-to-me orange C-90 out last night, and the C-90 holds it's own.  The LP sky was darker in that scope it seemed.  

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