Again we are back to SCT bashing even though the op is asking something else.
There are many logical errors in your argument. Here is one.
Some random Russian website tested Meade SCTs of various vintages and found variable quality. But somehow you managed to extrapolate these results to all new SCTs including Celestrons.
Lets be clear, this tells you nothing about consistency of recent vintages of SCTs. Further even if recent vintages of SCTs have variability it tells you nothing about the standard deviation. For example are all at least diffraction limited? If so, that is quite an excellent outcome since that means you are limited by seeing rather optical quality. What’s wrong with that?
In my 20+ years of observing I can count on my fingers evenings where seeing was good enough to tell the difference in optical quality better than diffraction limited in apertures > 8”. Even then it was not conclusive.
Do you realize the kind of seeing you need to tell optical quality of scopes above and beyond diffraction limited with aperture 8” and above? As an experienced observer you should know this.
It is relevant to the OPs question. He asked which would be better, and it would be impossible to answer it in a blanket kind of way because the comparison would depend on the specific two telescopes being compared.
My post then goes on to substantiate my claim that there are some pretty bad telscopes out there and if his comparison included one of these, it would loose not because of the design, but rather because of the quality to which it is made.
You can choose to believe that the Russians don't know what they are doing, but I can just as easily point to other tests elsewhere that show some pretty bad SCTs (and the worst ones tend to be Meades).
Ignore the tests though if you like. I report what I see, but I don't force anyone to do anything with that data and if they choose to discredit that data with only their subjective evaluations to stand on, I am really OK with that.
Lots and lots of tests out there though, and I encourage people to go out and study some on their own.
It would unfair to expect Meade and Celestron to produce every scope to the high levels of quality that someone like TEC, AP, or Intes Micro can provide. The amount of labor that goes into the scopes that these top tier companies make is many multiples of times greater than is allowed for mass market products. Often, final finishing is done by hand, and many hours of labor can be expended in search of perfection. Celstron and Meade simply could not exist if they had to make scopes to that level of quality because there is not a large enough market to buy them at the price they would have to charge. On the whole, I would say that they make mostly good scopes, but quality varies considerably.
Edited by Eddgie, 15 July 2019 - 07:56 AM.