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Meade ETX 70

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#1 p3aul

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 01:39 AM

I'm going to look at this used scope Friday. I have other, larger scopes including a used Meade LX200 8" which I just purchased and haven't tried out yet(Cloudy weather and a bad back). I thought of getting this as a gentle introduction into the world of GoTo. I know it's only a 70mm lense but isn't this primarily for the brighter DSOs? I imagine even Jupiter won't be very big in it's highest optimum power. Probably just show as a round yellow spot! Be that as it may, it would be fun to just put it in the back of the car for quick trips to the country for viewing. 

 

How big is the database of objects for viewing? When was the last year Meade made this scope?

 

Thanks,

Paul


 

#2 sg6

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:32 AM

Data base is somewhere around the 4000 mark, although I suspect many are repeats: Betelguese, Alpha Orion and at least a HIP and SAO number - yet all are Betelguese.

 

Last year they made it - not sure guess about 2005, maybe 2010 but think ceased earlier.

 

Jupiter will show as  a disk and should get the upper and lower equitorial bands, Saturn not so easy, maybe next July. Mars is a red disk.

 

Any good with wiring and a soldering iron?

Best option to power is something like a small Talentcell Li battery, make a small connector to PP3 and place Li battery on the base under the front of the scope (not the rear) and run at 12v. Need to make the small wiring thing, it is/seems a bit odd in the making.

 

Good for things like M45, M42. Basically wide objects. Grumbles at you all the time.

 

Handset cannot be upgraded - makes life easy, as in just forget it all. The lack of buttons can be a bit of a pain. Actually can drive you mad.

 

Where are you? If UK then for some odd reason set the Timezone to -0. Not sure why but it seems to like a -'s sign. Set your own custom location.

 

Database: The sun does not exist.

Get/make a small white light filter for the front, will be good for the Mercury transit - I am taking mine to a biggish event.

You can  either slew manually to the Sun or set the RA+Dec as a custom object then slew to that.

Eyepieces I use are 5mm, 6mm, 8mm, 12mm and 25mm. Strangely the 5mm and 6mm get little use. Would expect them to be the main ones but isn't so. So hesitate going to buying short eyepieces. 8mm = 44x = 1.5 degrees = M45, M42. Sun is also good at 8mm, oddly better at 12mm (??)

 

North is True North, get that determined, Level is obvious. No end stops so goes round and round, hence battery on the base.

 

OK limited I suppose but fun.

Wide fields especially with 25mm Paradigm/BST. About 15x so 4+ degree view = M31 fits nicely. You can end up being the only person at a star party who can see all M31 at once. (Act smug).

 

Mine was my first scope, still have it, still use it. It is almost a finder scope on a goto base.


 

#3 gkarris

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:57 AM

Just trying to warn you:

 

Hobby Killer for me...

 

https://www.cloudyni...ll-these-years/

 

Maybe you'll have better luck as it has already been used.


 

#4 SeattleScott

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 10:43 AM

The ETX mounts were not really built to last, so GoTo no longer works on many of them now. Plus GoTo is a pain with the basic controller. Fortunately it isn’t hard to starhop with that wide FOV. So expect it to be a manual scope, and if the GoTo works for you, that’s gravy. It would work as a travel/camping scope where you want something but don’t want to risk something valuable, and don’t have much room.

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#5 jgraham

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 10:49 AM

I have always enjoyed my ETX-60/70/80. They give nice wide binocular-like views. This is a great time of year for me the ETX with the Milky Way arcing high overhead. Add a laser pointer to turn it into a point-to scope!
 

#6 p3aul

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 08:01 PM

Thanks. After looking at all your posts I decided to forego the ETX 70 because of it's age and with Electronics and mechanics that old I didn't won't to take the chance. Instead I ordered the Meade 102mm refractor with Alt/AZ tripod from Amazon. It's a richfield scope which should show me plenty of DSOs. I have several other Reflectors but this is the First Refractor of that size I've ever owned. It has a crappy alt/az mount and it's manual but the scope has a vixen mount that could attach to a Eq later. What do y'all think of this scope?

Paul


 

#7 SamplingNature

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 08:05 PM

After a few nights out, I absolutely love my ETX-80. It's a great little grab-and-go scope!
 

#8 gkarris

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 08:40 AM

Thanks. After looking at all your posts I decided to forego the ETX 70 because of it's age and with Electronics and mechanics that old I didn't won't to take the chance. Instead I ordered the Meade 102mm refractor with Alt/AZ tripod from Amazon. It's a richfield scope which should show me plenty of DSOs. I have several other Reflectors but this is the First Refractor of that size I've ever owned. It has a crappy alt/az mount and it's manual but the scope has a vixen mount that could attach to a Eq later. What do y'all think of this scope?

Paul

If that's the Infinity 102 it will be a great scope.

 

It seems that the Infinity series has a great out-of-box experience.

 

Once you've tried everything out, you will decide what you want to upgrade.

 

I haven't had any real problems with the mount and use if for the Infinity 80 and C90....

 

Slo-mo is essential.


Edited by gkarris, 18 September 2019 - 08:48 AM.

 

#9 p3aul

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 01:57 AM

If that's the Infinity 102 it will be a great scope.

 

It seems that the Infinity series has a great out-of-box experience.

 

Once you've tried everything out, you will decide what you want to upgrade.

 

I haven't had any real problems with the mount and use if for the Infinity 80 and C90....

 

Slo-mo is essential.

I received the scope today and put it together. I had real problems with the tripod and mount and could not get it to work for me. There is a long post similar in 

looks to the control on a camera tripod, but does not function like one. I don't see it's purpose at all When I took the tripod out of the box and set it up I could not get ity to move in the vertical direction at all. There is a large lock nut that could be loosened to allow vertical movement but I could not find any point that would let me move it vertically and have enough friction so it would remain where you set it. 

 

To my mind, this alt/az mount is junk. I could not try out the OTA because of the mount. I am torn. Should I send it back or if the OTA is really good  should I keep it and buy an EQ mount from Orion. They have one that sells for 200- 250 depending on where you buy it. That would have me spending like 400- 450 dollars in the scope. Could I get a better deal if I put my money in another scope that has a good EQ mount already. I really want a rich field refractor!

Paul


 

#10 gkarris

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 10:45 AM

I received the scope today and put it together. I had real problems with the tripod and mount and could not get it to work for me. There is a long post similar in 

looks to the control on a camera tripod, but does not function like one. I don't see it's purpose at all When I took the tripod out of the box and set it up I could not get ity to move in the vertical direction at all. There is a large lock nut that could be loosened to allow vertical movement but I could not find any point that would let me move it vertically and have enough friction so it would remain where you set it. 

 

To my mind, this alt/az mount is junk. I could not try out the OTA because of the mount. I am torn. Should I send it back or if the OTA is really good  should I keep it and buy an EQ mount from Orion. They have one that sells for 200- 250 depending on where you buy it. That would have me spending like 400- 450 dollars in the scope. Could I get a better deal if I put my money in another scope that has a good EQ mount already. I really want a rich field refractor!

Paul

I don't get what you are saying.

 

There's a nut that you may need to loosen and mine had an included wrench. (see Pic)

 

Meade Infinity 80 w/ Nikon D90 & Svbony Adapter

 

Mine totally works great...


Edited by gkarris, 20 September 2019 - 10:50 AM.

 

#11 p3aul

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 12:02 PM

Thanks, I did finally figure it out but I want an EQ mount. Will the coronado EQS  or the Orion Astroview EQ mounts fit this scope?

Paul


 

#12 kfrank2380

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 12:27 PM

Thanks. After looking at all your posts I decided to forego the ETX 70 because of it's age and with Electronics and mechanics that old I didn't won't to take the chance. Instead I ordered the Meade 102mm refractor with Alt/AZ tripod from Amazon. It's a richfield scope which should show me plenty of DSOs. I have several other Reflectors but this is the First Refractor of that size I've ever owned. It has a crappy alt/az mount and it's manual but the scope has a vixen mount that could attach to a Eq later. What do y'all think of this scope?

Paul

I had the 90mm and I liked it a lot. I saw rings of Saturn and Jupiter with the eyepieces it came with. The tripod is more robust than the cheaper ones that come with a lot lower priced scopes. You'll still probably need to add a weight or something to stop vibration. I upgraded to a 8" dob from the 90mm but there are times I wish I still had it for convenience of transporting it. The only negative of it was I felt I had to move it a lot to keep things into view. Not a deal breaker at all.


 

#13 gkarris

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Posted 20 September 2019 - 03:07 PM

Thanks, I did finally figure it out but I want an EQ mount. Will the coronado EQS  or the Orion Astroview EQ mounts fit this scope?

Paul

You're welcome - np...

 

The Meade Infinity 80 has a standard dovetail plate on the bottom, any EQ mount with one will work...


Edited by gkarris, 20 September 2019 - 03:08 PM.

 

#14 Sky Muse

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Posted 21 September 2019 - 01:50 AM

Thanks, I did finally figure it out but I want an EQ mount. Will the coronado EQS  or the Orion Astroview EQ mounts fit this scope?

Paul

The "Coronado" mount is an EQ-2, and exactly like my Meade...

 

3b.jpg

 

Although the "Coronado" comes with a motor-drive, but you can save some money by getting the same mount with the blue setting-circles instead of the gold ones, and without a motor-drive...

 

https://www.bhphotov...equatorial.html

 

You'd get a telescope thrown in to boot, and a rather good one...

 

kit4c.jpg

 

Your Meade "Infinity" 102mm f/6 achromat would attach onto the mount in seconds.  Bear in mind that equatorial mounts are more mechanical than alt-azimuths, and at these price-points expect to perform some DIY to make it right.

 

The Orion "AstroView" is a larger mount, an EQ-3.  It's rather chunky, heavy, so make sure you're aware of that aspect before ordering.  This EQ-3 is of a lighter, more portable, construction...

 

https://www.amazon.c...d/dp/B075V72DW6

 

I'd give that one more serious consideration over the others.


 

#15 clearwaterdave

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Posted 21 September 2019 - 03:30 AM

I agree.,this mount is a pain.,I fixed it quick and cheap.,and now it works like a charm.,The tripod is fine under this set up,.

  The ota/optics are ok.,nothing great but not trash.,imho.,  

I got mine very lightly used for $125 which I feel was too much with the mount being so wanky.,but so it goes.,lol.,

   If you're at all handy this is a great fix.,it's very smooth and still a g+g scope .,cheers

 

As for the ETX70 I had one.,it sounded like a sink disposal.,I gave it to a friend who had 2 boys.,they used it manually and loved it.,

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#16 p3aul

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 12:30 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions! I'm sure there is one that I can use!

Paul


 

#17 Tony Flanders

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 09:03 PM

Thanks, I did finally figure it out but I want an EQ mount.


Are you sure? To my mind, the Infinity 102 is crying out to be put on a good alt-azimuth mount -- the key word in that phrase being good. Equatorial mounts are great for tracking objects at high power, but the Infinity 102 is for most purposes probably limited to around 150X -- as much by its focuser as anything else. And at 150X, it's quite easy to hand-track with a good alt-azimuth mount.

 

The downsides of equatorial mounts are that they're a lot heavier than equivalently stable alt-azimuth mounts, they sometimes place the telescope into awkward positions, and they are less intuitive to operate than alt-az mounts. On the other hand, once you've acquired the knack of it, using an EQ mount is kinda cool, because it forces you to think in terms of celestial rather than terrestrial directions.


 

#18 p3aul

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 10:20 PM

 

On the other hand, once you've acquired the knack of it, using an EQ mount is kinda cool, because it forces you to think in terms of celestial rather than terrestrial directions.

My thoughts exactly! AZ for Terrestrial and EQ for Celestial. I have never owned but one other AZ mount before. It's a nightmare when you have a 9mm eyepiece trying to follow the object! I used to know how to locate an object using setting circles but I think you had to convert Solar time into Sidereal time but my memory is getting fuzzy. Well that's what google is for I guess!

Paul


 

#19 clearwaterdave

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 10:46 PM

My thoughts exactly! AZ for Terrestrial and EQ for Celestial. I have never owned but one other AZ mount before. It's a nightmare when you have a 9mm eyepiece trying to follow the object! I used to know how to locate an object using setting circles but I think you had to convert Solar time into Sidereal time but my memory is getting fuzzy. Well that's what google is for I guess!

Paul

It is only a nightmare if the mount is not smooth/stable enough to use properly.,please reread the beginning of Tony's post.,An eq mount is only good for tracking at high power if it is a good stable mount.,AZ is very nice for celestial viewing.,much better even IMHO.,a lot less fussin around.,cheers.,good luck with your choices.,


 

#20 p3aul

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 02:28 AM

I have a Meade lx200 8" goto scope also. Sorry to disagree with you fellows but this $2500 scope is still a nightmare to use in manual mode. It's like flying a Helicopter with three controls and two hands! turning two knobs at the same time(no matter how smooth) vs turning one knob. Just an exercise in frustration and apt to turn a beginner off the hobby completely.

Paul

 

I took Sky Muse's advice and ordered the 130mm Polaris with EQ-2 mount. Now I will have an EQ mount and an extra RF scope!


 

#21 GOLGO13

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 09:55 AM

I actually much prefer alt/az mounts for astronomy. I only get my EQ mount out for tracking/goto needs.

 

But, I can see how tracking can be important to some people. It's certainly a nice thing. I think for cruising around manually, either one works.

 

I have one of the best alt/az mounts for manual tracking...the FTX. They are no longer made, but they make tracking at high powers very easy. But I also have a low cost one that works very well also. The Vixen Porta Mount. Mine is 13+ years old now and still works very well.

 

I think in these smaller sizes the EQ mounts (like an EQ2), the weight and such wouldn't be much of an issue. However, larger sized EQ mounts are heavy and annoying/awkward.

 

Another consideration for both types...Celestron vibration pads. Those things are so good I think everyone should have them. They only cost 40-50 dollars, but they will improve any mount a considerable amount.


 

#22 Jond105

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 09:15 PM

With this no longer about the Meade ETX70, going to lock it up. 


 


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