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ETX-60AT & ETX-70AT USER FEEDBACK
Last updated: 30 June 2001

This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade ETX-60AT and ETX-70AT. Additional information on these models is available on the ETX-60AT & ETX-70AT Announcements page. Comments on accessories and feedback items appropriate to other ETX models are posted on other pages. If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or answers to questions posed here, e-mail them to me and I'll post them. Please use an appropriate Subject Line on your message. Thanks.


Subject:	Just got my ETX-70...defective?...alignment problem
Sent:	Saturday, June 30, 2001 20:08:00
From:	LJCollazo@CollazoInc.com (L. J. Collazo)
First, thanks for your website.

Being new to astronomy, I looked at the ETX-70, as my first scope.  I
received my ETX-70 three days ago..It has been either raining or to
cloudy (or hazy) to try it yet.  Instead, I have been "practicing" with
my scope in my living room.

I have found the following problem: when I first start the scope from
power down and do the alignments, I cannot move the scope horizontally
using the controller's buttons to center the alignment stars.  Even
after the alignment is done, I cannot use the controls.  However, if I
park the scope (using the "park" utility), and turn the power back on, I
do have vertical and horizontal control from the handset. My s/w rev is
10E.  This behavior happens all the time.  I am concerned that I might
not be able to ever properly align the scope since I have no horizontal
control.

Incidentally, I also noticed that the information on the handset
controller about some objects (ex.Altair, M1) is different (distance,
location, magnitude)from what is shown on my Starry Night Backyard s/w.

I hope you can provide me feedback regarding my alignment problem. Maybe
the unit is defective?

Regards,
LJ
Mike here: That is the current rev of the #494 Autostar software. Since you indicate you do have control at sometimes and not at other times it does sound like something is amiss. You might try a RESET and TRAIN the drive the drives. But since you just received it, you might want to contact the dealer for an exchange if RESET and reTRAIN doesn't fix it.

Subject:	In praise of the ETX 70
Sent:	Friday, June 29, 2001 3:06:08
From:	audi@ozemail.com.au (Greg Christie & Lynne Banwell)
I took the ETX 70 out again tonight. Very cold for early winter here in
Australia. I placed my Vixen LVW 5mm eyepiece and manually positioned to
Mars. To be honest, its small in this scope (I have been spoilt but
other instruments). At 70x, not much to see, however I was very pleased
with the sites in scanning around the area. This is an excellent wide
field instrument and I do not regret my purchase, complementing my other
scopes.

The 70 looks a tad unhappy with the LVW (which weighs in at half a kilo
- which end do I look through?). However I carried the whole assembly to
the front yard and viewed the moon which was absolutely superb. This
little scope is an excellent travelling companion, not only in its size
but its physical portability. Although it makes a superb beginners'
scope, it also makes an excellent adjunct to other instruments.

I have had my problems with the "goto", but all could be attributed to
not reading the manual correctly (which probably means the manual could
do with some revision - you have to be very careful about reading it).
I'm not fussed on the focusing but have learned to deal with it and a
finder would help a lot when slewing manually.

This web site is an excellent reference

Cheers

Greg

Subject:	Reading of ETX-70's DataBase
Sent:	Wednesday, June 27, 2001 14:03:32
From:	jmrayon@easynet.fr (Jean Michel Rayon)
I received my ETX-70, good comments for the moment. 

It is not the same thing for AstroFinder, I am very disappointed. I
hoped for a version limited of Epoch2000 as shown on the picture of web
pages. In fact it is about a bundle StarryNight+ACP. Where are 15000
objects as indicated on the CD?.

My question : 
How read the dataBase of autostar with a PC ? The commands
#:LB#,#:LC#,... of LX200 are not applicable

Thanks You

Jean Michel RAYON
And this from our expert:
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (richard seymour)
That is correct... the Autostar does not currently provide a
simple means of reading its database.  

It is *not* as "fully functional" as an LX-200.

Meade may add that feature in the future, but i find no hint
of it in my reading of the code (unlike some not-yet-there 
features which have little pieces of code where they are working
on it).

Oh... an ETX-70!
MUCH of the database information (the stars, at least) are described
in Mike's site under:
http://www.weasner.com/etx/autostar/as_db.html
and
www.wolfe.net/~workshop/astro/hr.html

The information is in the "dbase.rom" file which is part of the
Updater package, but i have made -no- attempt to extract database
items.  (i am more interested in how the system -works-, not in the
 exact raw data of the dbase, other than mild curiosity).

The Starfinder matches much of the 495 Autostar's database,
 which is on Meade's support website.

The current ETX90 file (22eH) has the following difference:
If you -do- try to decode the dbase.rom file, be aware that the first
 5000 (hex) bytes are -not- part of the database itself.

have fun
--dick

Subject:	Response to Eye Pieces for the ETX-70 question
Sent:	Wednesday, June 27, 2001 9:36:42
From:	Kevin_Tofel@GMACM.COM (Kevin Tofel - PA)
I have the ETX-70, the MA-9mm and the 3x Barlow and have used them to
view Mars (recently), Jupiter and Saturn.  Personally, I was not
disappointed in my views.  Mars is certainly bright enough now to see at
114x through the ETX-70, as was Jupiter and Saturn in the fall\winter
months.  I was also able to see 4 or 5 moons of Jupiter as pinpointes of
light.  Obviously, this all depends on viewing conditions and location,
but in my case, neither are acceptable.  I'm happy with my decision to
purchase the 3x Barlow and use my MA-9mm.

Just thought I would pass along my personal experience in reference to
the post....thanks!

 	Kevin C. Tofel

Subject:	ETX-70AT
Sent:	Tuesday, June 26, 2001 11:48:51
From:	NArmstro@cha.ab.ca (Armstrong, Neil)
Mike I was just reading your review of the ETX-70AT. You mentioned that
the focus knob is hard to get at. I agree 100%. I just thought I'd tell
you that when I focus after changing eyepieces, I loosen the eyepiece
holder screw with one hand and raise or lower the eyepiece in the barrel
with the other hand. Maybe you already know about this.

Also Mike, in cold weather I wear heavy mitts but can still use the
Autostar. Hold the Autostar keypad in your palm and push the buttons
with your thumb. You may already know about this too.

Regards
Mike here: Making the eyepieces "parfocal" where they focus at the same position is what you are essentially doing by sliding the eyepieces up/down. You can wrap some tape around the eyepiece tube to make this "permanent" for each eyepiece once you know that infocus position. Good pointing about thumbing the Autostar keys. Thanks.

And:

Thanks Mike, good one on the tape trick! I'll save time.

Subject:	Eye Pieces for the ETX-70
Sent:	Monday, June 25, 2001 11:01:26
From:	jglev@yahoo.com (Jeff Levine)
I am very new to all this and just got my ETX-70.  I wish I had found
your site before I bought it.  Anyway, I am disappointed in the images I
see of Mars (can't see Jupiter or Saturn this time of year, but I
suspect I will be disapointed in that too).  I would like to increase
the magnification and was thinking of getting the PL 4 mm eyepiece
anlong with the 2X Barlow lens.  I have read some negative things about
the 4 mm eyepiece and was wondering if it is true (poorly resolved
images and recommendations that no one should buy one)?  Would I be
better off not getting the 4 mm eyepiece and getting the 3X Barlow lens
instead (or will 3X make even bright objects too dim with the MA 9mm
eyepiece)?  I know the limitations of the scope, but am wondering if
there is anything I can do to it to get better images of the planets?

Thanks for your help.

Jeff
Mike here: Keep in mind that the theorectical maximum magnification for any telescope is approximately twice the telescope aperture in millimeters. So, for the ETX-70AT that would 140X (or the equivalent of a 2.5mm eyepiece since the focal length of the telescope is 350mm). To use or exceed the max requires bright objects and excellent seeing conditions. I briefly viewed through a Meade 4.7mm eyepiece on the ETX-125EC and it was of high quality. I can't speak to other 4mm eyepieces.

Subject:	ETX60AT Autostar and satelites
Sent:	Saturday, June 23, 2001 11:38:26
From:	gmehojah@mindspring.com
I have tried using the satelites goto function, but there dont seem to
be any satelites installed onto the Autostar.  It just says I can
add/delete/edit them, but none are in there.  Does the Autostar come
empty with satelites, so your sucked into buying the computer cable to
download them?

Thanks,

Greg
Mike here: The Autostar #494 I have with the ETX-70AT came with some satellites in its database. You do not need the cable/computer to download satellite TLEs. You can enter them just using the Autostar. See the "Tracking ISS" and "Satellite Tracking" items on the Autostar Information page for more info.

And:

Wow, thanks.  I did find some satelites, but will put more in manually.

Subject:	ETX-60AT AC power supply FYI
Sent:	Friday, June 22, 2001 19:13:40
From:	ECDON@aol.com
Just wanted to let you know that meade now has the #546 AC power
adapters for ETX-60/70. I ordered mine through them about a month ago
and it just arrived tonight.

Don Spencer
Mike here: More info on the Accessories - Miscellaneous page.

Subject:	ETX-60AT newby
Sent:	Thursday, June 21, 2001 19:08:06
From:	twilliams10@cfl.rr.com (Tom Williams)
Another vote for your site as best of the bunch!  I just recieved my 
new ETX-60AT  as the result of a Sam's Club auction. (<$150.00 incl.shpg
& tax).

After setting it up and leveling the base and the tube, I noted that the
Dec. scale was 2 degrees off zero.  Is that adjustable to remove the
offset?

I also noted that the 90 deg. eyepiece holder is tipped forward about 1
degree.  I assume that this won't affect the preformance.

Is there an easy way to apply external 9V power to the scope?  And if
so, what would the peak current draw be?

I live about 15 miles from the nearest city listed in their database; 
is there a way to input actual Long. & Lat.?

Tom Williams
Mike here: See the FAQ for correcting the DEC (altitude) scale. I doubt that the degree tilt will make any difference. On many telescopes when you tighten the setscrew, the optical axis shifts slightly. See the Meade Announcement (linked from the ETX Site Home Page) for info on a power supply from Meade. Also, see the Telescope Tech Tips for some homemade power supplies. Use the Setup->Site to add or edit site names/locations.

Subject:	Scoop on ETX-60's @ Costco $98.99
Sent:	Thursday, June 21, 2001 14:46:50
From:	JR
First off.. Congratulations on your 2001 Achievement Award.  It is very
well deserved.

I have been a silent (avid) reader of the Mighty ETX Site for the past
two years and saw in your ETX 60/70 forum some info on the ETX-60s at
Costco. The ETX-60 would make a great 4th scope for me without having to
worry about breaking it when traveling.

Anyway.. Here is the scoop for your readers:

Costco will be selling the ETX-60 for $128.99 - $30 (off at register)
for a total of $98.99 from August 27th through September 2nd.  One item
per coupon.  One coupon per household.  Only original coupons will be
accepted. Coupon valid at all U.S. Costco warehouses. Coupon may not be
combined with any other offer or coupon.

The Member Passport to Savings - Summer 2001 coupon book can be obtained
at the Membership Services counter of any Costco.  One book per
membership account. The ETX coupon is located on the last page.

Also noted in the coupon is that the ETX will be available for purchase
at http://www.costco.com however no Meade products are currently listed
on their site.

The product description did not mention whether it included Autostar but
the picture showed the Autostar unit.

Keep up the good work!

Glad to see you doing all your web development work on a Macintosh!

-JR

Subject:	Response to "RE: Some Observations"
Sent:	Thursday, June 21, 2001 9:02:42
From:	swwebb@aqm.co.knox.tn.us (Steven W. Webb)
This is a response to the 18 Jun 2001 posting with the subject: "RE:
Some Observations" by Joshua Langweil. There are other, more general,
comments as well regarding the ETX-60 and -70 telescopes.

I have an ETX-70, an EC (black OTA) unit I purchased when Natural
Wonders went out-of-business. From within the city limits where I live
(with only mediocre seeing), I have been able to view the Ring Nebula
(M57) in Lyra successfully using a MA9mm eyepiece and 2X shorty Barlow.
A few of pointers might make the experience approach expectations:

--- (1a) The Ring Nebula (M57) is listed in the Autostar as a Planetary
Nebula, not a Nebula (for the simple reason that it _is_ a planetary
nebula). Remember that there are two (2) places to look for nebulae in
the Autostar, and you must scroll past the Nebula menu to reach the
Planetary Nebula menu.

--- (2a) M57 will _not_ look like any image that you have seen: it will
look like a smudge. If, however, you keep your eye moving _around_ the
nebula in the FOV instead of looking directly _at_ the nebula, you will
eventually be able to convince yourself that the doughnut shape of
nebula is discernable. I could convince myself that I have been able to
see a star in the middle of the nebula. (I have come to appreciate the
phrase "I could convince myself..." when using my -70.) Remember,
however, that even if all you see is the smudge, that should be
impressive enough, since you will never be able to see it with the naked
eye alone and probably not with a pair of binoculars, either.

--- (3a) If you slightly, but continually, nudge the 'scope with the
Autostar controller's slewing keys while keeping the nebula in the FOV,
your eye gets tricked into making out detail that it would otherwise
miss. If your slew speed rate is set at too high and you lose the
nebula, just GOTO the nebula again, reset your slew speed using the
numeric keys ("1" = crawl to "9" = race), and keep nudging. You don't
have to nudge in both Alt- and Az- axes: one or the other works
acceptably. Perhaps Dr. Sherrod could offer an explanation as to why eye
(see #2a, above) and/or FOV movement makes things more "virtually
apparent," but, trust me, it works.

To the community of 350mm OTA users at large who question the investment
they have made in the smallest telescopes in the Meade Instruments
family, I would also like to offer the following additional
observations, which in no way are not intended to offend owners of the
larger (and ostensibly "superior") ETX 'scopes:

--- (1b) In general, I think of my -70 as having the capabilities of a
pair of binoculars (perhaps on steroids) with tracking servo motors for
following star and planetary movement. To me, the -70 is only nominally
a "small telescope," at least in the context that phrase is used in
astronomy books and star maps. Where the -70 works best is in wide-field
views, where you can GOTO and see more than one "thing of interest" in
the FOV. Unlike binoculars, you can keep the "thing(s) of interest" in
the FOV for an extended period of time without tedium. You can even
share the "thing(s) of interest" in the FOV with less-experienced
viewers, _knowing_ that they are looking at the same thing that you want
to point out to them, a claim that binoculars could never make.

--- (2b) Regarding images against which you are comparing the view in
your 'scope, many of the images, even on this web site, have been
digitally enhanced ("rendered") using software like AstroStack or
PhotoShop and hardware like CCD imaging equipment. Even the person that
acquired the image didn't necessarily see the sight that the image
represents. An old photographers' adage comes to mind: "Great pictures
are not taken, they are made."

--- (3b) Regarding trying to discern specific details on various
astronomical things of interest, I have seen postings, here and
elsewhere, using phrases like "the view was glorious" and "the view was
spectacular" with larger 'scopes. The best that I hope for with the -70
is "the view was cool enough." It should be noted, however, that there
are also millions of people that will _never_ see what you are seeing
outside of an image on a printed page, and they will never experience
the excitement of looking at something specific and having, say, a
satellite pass through the FOV. "Glorious" and "spectacular" are
subjective, too, unlike the objectivity of the image that, as we learned
in #2b above, may have been manipulated into its final impressive form.

--- (4b) The moon provides a very good object to view. I have seen
postings here and elsewhere expressing disappointment with the lunar
view, and I disagree with most of those postings. Using the MA9mm
eyepiece and 2X shorty Barlow as mentioned above, the face of the Moon
will exceed the FOV, and the detail in view will be extremely nice at
the terminator. Some postings down-play lunar observation as an inferior
activity, but I think those postings reflect poorly on introducing
astronomy to new users: there is, after all, much to enjoy by viewing
our nearest neighbor in the sky.

--- (5b) In the best viewing I have had so far (late spring/early
summer), Mars was a reddish-yellow disk with essentially no surface
detail and Jupiter was a pinhead disk with absolutely no surface detail.
With Jupiter, however, the four (4) Galilean satellites were visible. I
expect Saturn, as yet unseen due to its position in the sky, to have
"wings" instead of "rings," but even that is questionable (see the "I
could convince myself..." comment in #2a above regarding detail). Good
seeing may improve Jupiter somewhat to a band or two, but I do not have
high expectations.

--- (6b) One thing at which the -70 _excels_ is "readiness-for-action."
I can take instant advantage of favorable viewing conditions, setting up
within minutes or, at the first break in the clouds, packing up and
heading out in a moment's notice to find darker skies. I don't have an
observatory, either: I just grab the tripod and 'scope case, and I'm on
my way. Since I have three (3) pre-teen kids, the "readiness for action"
allows for them to join in the activity, too: they will _not_ stay
attentive during extended setup periods. If I lose their attention
during setup, it is unlikely that I will regain their attention (and,
hence, interest) during viewing. They seldom can wait for the 'scope to
cool down, so we are "slewing away" within minutes of being
out-the-door. I also spend more time using the 'scope since my
break-down time at the site is equally expedient.

--- (7b) The "I'm-saving-up-for-something-better" inferiority complex
which occasionally creeps into postings on the ETX-60 and -70 Feedback
Page is, perhaps, a disservice to the 'scopes that we own. I heartily
endorse using what you have to its maximum potential, and I'm not
convinced that the new users of the -60 and -70 (myself included) should
look elsewhere until they know what their (our) 'scopes capabilities and
limitations are. I, for one, bought the -70 because I could afford it
and nothing more: I don't expect to get anything more for a while yet,
either. Many star-gazers through the years started with the naked eye,
then moved up binoculars, then moved up to a "small telescope," never
advancing beyond that level. Though there are bigger 'scopes with better
views, I can see more with the "small telescope" that I own than with
the more robust 'scopes which I do not own. Owners of -90, -125, and
even -200 size 'scopes probably aren't totally convinced that they have
the best possible view: after all, there is always the Wilson-,
Palomar-, and Hubble-type views to be had!

No, indeed, I may not have a "Mighty ETX," but my "Mitey ETX" is, in
fact, "My ETX."

Clear skies!

Steven Webb
swwebb@worldnet.att.net

Subject:	Hi Mike
Sent:	Monday, June 18, 2001 21:49:59
From:	Joscarfas@aol.com
I just wanted to thank you again for your help you're such a nice guy, I
was playing around with my telescope tonight however all I was able to
see was a whole bunch of stars everywhere I pointed my telescope to and
when I finally pointed my telescope to something i thought was a planet
when i tried to zoom it the picture was not clear i don't know if I'm
doing aything wrong or what!, anyway I even feel like returning my
telescope 'cause I'm not going anywhere with this, by the way
CONGRATULATIONS on that award that you got. Once again I thank you for
all your help.

Fausto
New York, NY
Mike here: I'm not certain what you mean by "i thought was a planet when i tried to zoom it the picture was not clear". Do you have a zoom eyepiece or did you just change the magnification. As I note in my review of the ETX-70AT, planets will appear disappointing in the ETX-70AT due to the limited magnification capability of this telescope. It is best suited for wide angle views of star fields. If you want to see more details on the Moon and planets, you'll need a larger aperture telescope with a longer focal length than the ETX-70AT.

And:

Well, I just changed the magnification with the "magnification knob" and
then the little "Star or Planet" whatever that was seems to get bigger
and blur, but according to the REVIEW this telescope has in the meade
website you're supposed to see even a galaxy (please correct me if I'm
wrong), you know like I told you before I'm new in all this astronomy
stuff and I'm not even sure that the alignment that I did was right. So
in other words that is all  I'm gonna be able to see with this
telescope? (jus a whole bunch of stars?), please don't hate me with all
these questions :-). I hope you understand me what I'm trying to say
'cause I'm not even sure how to explain to you what I see trough the
telescope.
Mike here: No questions are dumb, whether for new amateur astronomers or experienced ones. When you turn the focus knob (which is not a "magnification knob"), you adjust the focus for the eyepiece being used. At some position in the rotation, stars will be crisp points of light and a planet will be a small disk (although for some planets at some distances from the Earth they may also appear star-like and NOT show a disk). When you turn the focus knob in either direction and move away from this infocus image, the objects in the eyepiece WILL get larger and out-of-focus (fuzzy, blurry). To increase magnification you use an eyepiece with a shorter focal length. The ETX-70AT comes with a 25mm and a 9mm. The 9mm magnifies the image a little less than 3 times the magnification provided by the 25mm. This means that what you see in the 25mm eyepiece will appear nearly three times "closer" with the 9mm. However, for really small objects, like distant planets, that increase is not really that much. You might want to check for a local astronomy club or group that could help you learn more. Many clubs have night observing sessions where members bring telescopes of all sizes and designs.

And:

Hey, once again THANK YOU SO MUCH, I'm gonna take your advise and i will
start looking for an Astronomy Club near my area, I think would be a
great idea if you add a chat room to your website, by the way I'm a web
designer so if you ever need help with your website I'll be more than
glad to help you I think would be a good way to thank you for all your
support and help. Take care of yourself and if anything you got my
email.

Subject:	ETX-70
Sent:	Monday, June 18, 2001 19:12:49
From:	rekirby2@prodigy.net (Bob & Lauren Kirby)
Mike, Your site is wonderful. 

I purchased an ETX70EC (the black barrel one) with the 495 Autostar from
Shutan back in October of 2000.  It has the same base that came with the
ETX90EC. It uses the #505 cable to do my downloads. Dick Seymour
answered a question in the ETX60/ETX70 Dec 2000 feedback (Dec 4,2000 to
be exact) about the ETX60 and the 495 Autostar capabilities. Am I
understanding Dick right  that I might be able to use the ETX90 electric
focuser with my ETX70EC and 495 Autostar? If you or Dick could answer
this question, I would appreciate it. Thanks again for all the
information that your site has provided.
And:
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (richard seymour)
Electrically, yes... you can use the focuser.

Mechanically??? i don't know if it fits the etx70 or not
(the etx125 and etx90 take *different* focusers... one reason is
that the stupid shaft is a subtly different diameter...)

I don't know if Meade makes an electric focuser for the current etx70.
(i cannot find one in the catalog)

The spacing between the focus knob and plastic lumps on the current
 etx70 is *much* tighter than the etx90 (in my finger's opinion).
So i really don't know if it'd fit.

3rd party focusers (the ones which run a belt to a separate drive motor)
would work, but they wouldn't talk to the autostar.

--dick

Subject:	Re:  some observations
Sent:	Monday, June 18, 2001 11:21:54
From:	jlangweil@yahoo.com (Joshua Langweil)
So last night seemed very atmospherically-friendly for observing, so I
gave it another shot.  I was able to see more stars through the etx-70
than ever before. One thing I still haven't been able to see is any
nebula.  I tried the North American nebula in my wide-angle 18mm, and
located the correct starfield from my skymap software, but saw nothing
but the stars.  Would a scope with higher aperture (7 or 8 inches) help,
or is the problem the bright city-lit sky?  I want to save up and maybe
get an LX-90, but why bother if I still can't see anything from my
location....thanks for the input.
-Josh
Mike here: It sounds like you are making some progress. A larger aperture will let you see fainter objects, if those objects can be seen. The larger aperture will gather more light from the object but it will also gather more light from the sky background. You can help this with a light pollution filter of some type. But dark skies are what you really need.

Subject:	ETX 60 for terrestrial viewing
Sent:	Friday, June 15, 2001 23:30:40
From:	cgm@hawaii.rr.com (Carl G. Miller)
What is the relative power of an ETX 60 telescope for terrestrial
viewing or use as a spotting scope?  I don't know what eyepiece the ETX
60 is supplied with.  Further, are there adapters available for use with
35mm SLR cameras?  Would appreciate any information available.  Thanks, 
Carl Miller
And:
Sorry I jumped the gun on the first e-mail.  I've read your info on the
ETX 70 and assume that the ETX 60 is provided with the same eye pieces
and will provide 14x and 39x relative viewing power.

But do you have an opinion about using the 60 for terrestrial viewing,
particularly field of view.  The reason I'm especially interested is
because COSTCO will be having a special on the 60 later this year.  I
gave up my 15x 25x spotting scope to my daughter a month or so ago, and
miss it very much.  So I'm looking for something to replace it.

Would appreciate your comments.  Thanks    Carl Miller

PS.  Great web site.  Thanks very much for that as well.
Mike here: Yes, there is an adapter (Meade #64ST). And both scopes make ideal wide-field telescopes.

Subject:	Re: Meade Telescope
Sent:	Friday, June 15, 2001 13:23:40
From:	Joscarfas@aol.com
Thanks a lot i really appreciate your help, i just got 3 more questions
that i hope you don't mind.

1.- Do i have to align the telescope everytime i want to start a new
session?
2.- Does the telescope always take a long time to find an object?
3.- When do i know that the telescope has found the object i'm looking
for?

Thanks again and i hope i'm not a pain in the butt with all this
questions.

Regards,
Fausto
Mike here: 1. At the start of session you do the alignment. As long as you don't turn off the power the alignment is good. Once you power down the alignment goes away unless you "Park" the scope (a function in the Autostar menu). But if you physically move the telescope (to reposition it to see objects that were behind the trees) the alignment is also blown. 2. No. It slews rapidly to the object. 3. A "beep" will occur.

Subject:	Meade ETX60
Sent:	Thursday, June 14, 2001 23:06:46
From:	brian.Lee@anritsu.com (Lee, Brian)
I have been dreaming of a telescope, but price has been an obstacle. Now
I see this at a very reasonable price @ Costco soon for $99.  This is
actually below my budget, but I would like to know it this would be
suitable scope for terrestrial viewing.  That would likely be the
primary use.  Is there any drawbacks or is there a much better telescope
out there worth saving for?  I would still like to look at the stars,
but I always felt the best astronomical views I could ever hope to see
would be found in a magazine.  Thanks.
Mike here: The ETX-60AT will make a fine terrestrial scope but having the Autostar and base is actually overkill for that purpose. If terrestrial usage will be your ONLY usage you might want to move to a longer focal length scope (depending on what type of terrestrial usage you intend). You could also consider an ETX-90RA (not Autostar capable) which makes a super terrestrial scope and you are not paying too much for the drive/base. Alternatively you can consider the Spotting Scope model of the ETX-90, which comes without the base (and no Autostar). However, if you think you MIGHT want to get into astronomical viewing, then having the base (and perhaps Autostar) will be useful. Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Subject:	Focus knobs and declination rings..
Sent:	Thursday, June 14, 2001 21:12:29
From:	Wilbur_Q@msn.com (William J. Cullen)
Howdy Michael, nice site!

Wish I had found (looked for) your site before I bought my Meade
ETX70-AT.

Greg Menzel mentioned in a previous post that the supplied allen wrench
was too small.  Well, I was spinning the dang thing after changing eye
pieces last night and it came off.  No sweat, they gave me an allen
wrench to tighten it.

It was too small.  Arrgghh!!

Did you know that with the focus knob removed, the lens tube pretty much
goes wherever it wants?  It is something that can drive you nutz if you
don't expect it.  Seems the focus knob anchors the lens tube.  Oh, they
have a dinky little lock washer on the focus rod, but it is really only
a safety so the tube won't pop off.

You mentioned in your review of the '70 that the declination ring was
off. I thought so too, but I am an absolute newbie, so I thought that
the zero dec was supposed to be a little "up scope".  Are you saying
that the scope should be level (as in level using a bubble) and THAT
should be zero?

I thought that might be the case, but I didn't want to screw with a
brand new scope.  My "GOTO" stinks right now, and I think that is the
problem.

Does MEADE read these messages?

Great site, you are now in my favorites menu.

Rgrds,

BC
Mike here: The DEC (or actually Altitude) scale should read 0 (zero) degrees when the tube is horizontal. When it is straightup it should read 90 degrees.

Subject:	ETX-70AT and astrophotography
Sent:	Thursday, June 14, 2001 17:52:50
From:	moelskne@online.no (Ivar Moelsknes)
I am quite concerned there must be a way to produce reasonable astropix
with the the ETX 70AT. Being a an old professional (pressphotographer)
in Norway (EU) I have handled both film and CCD's.  I haven*t for 3
years used film, but I still enjoy the feeling of beeing in a "camrea
obscura"-possission ; developing my film and doing my own prints.

As You will understand, I have seen the advantage of the film era, but I
must confess that I also appreciate (and anticipated) the coming of the
CCD.  As of all comments on Your site, there must be a resonable
interest for the ATX 60/70 doing astropixs.  Handeling lenses, film and
apertures there will always be so many appraoches to the subject that
might confuse the very most enthusiastic amateur.  The only difference
between an ETX 60/70 and a "normal 350mm" telephoto lens is really the
ability of tracking.

Once you have the skill of operatig your camera with the appropriate
lenses, it*s no big deal!  In other words; Producing astropix with the
ETX 70/60 is probabely more challenging, Why shall we always theorise? "
ETX60/70/90/125.  Who is first to produce a good astrophoto saying
nout where it came from???
Ivar Moelsknes, Norway
Mike here: I agree with you. And there are already some good astrophotos taken with the ETX-70AT on my ETX site. I have one on the ETX-70AT review I posted on the Helpful Information: Buyer/New User Tips page. Plus I believe there are some in the Guest Astrophotography galleries (I forget which ones).

Subject:	Great website!
Sent:	Thursday, June 14, 2001 11:26:27
From:	Kelly.Jones@carrier.utc.com (Jones, Kelly CAR)
I just want to let you know that your website is a great help! My wife
and I have purchased an ETX 60AT for my daughter's 11th birthday (of
course, my wife thinks that I bought it as much for myself!). I thought
this would be a great introduction to astronomy for my daughter. She has
a new interest in astronomy, so I hope this helps her along. I must
confess, I'm as excited as I know she will be....

Your website will become an often used bookmark, I can assure you!

Regards,

Kelly Jones

Subject:	re: 64ST adapter
Sent:	Wednesday, June 13, 2001 21:51:15
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (richard seymour)
To:	hugh@hadamson.freeserve.co.uk
I don't have one, either... but i do have the ETX90's adapter.
And it has -two- tubes ... the one which attaches to the scope,
and an extension tube for optionally moving the camera further
away...
does yours have two tubes?  (maybe they're tight together and
 you didn't notice).
That might give you additional focus range.

Can you form a focused image on simply a scrap of paper held
in the rear port?  (the Moon's (or a day-lit object) about the
only thing bright enough to do this test).

Where the paper "Screen" sits at focus is where your film plane
 has to sit, too. 

I'll try when i can get my fingers on an ETX70...

--dick
Mike here: According to the photo in the Meade catalog, the 64ST is VERY short, much shorter than either of the two pieces of the ETX-90 adapter. I don't know if it is in two pieces or not.

And more from Dick:

I called a friend, and had him run a quick check with an ETX70at.
(same focal length).

Given a 40- to 60-meter distant target, the focus plane appeared
to be 14.5 inches (368 mm), measured from the front rim of the
telescope.  Or about 1.5 inches from the back end of the threads,
 but we did -nothing- to play with the focus knob, which would 
 simply move the "14.5 inch" point back and forth as the front lens
 moves in and out.
Since the true focal plane of the main lens doublet is difficult to
 determine, this approximation shows where the film/ccd has to be.

SO: measure your camera and mounting tubes... and try to crank the
 lens toward the rear of the scope as much as possible.
 (that'd be a CW turning of the knob, i think)
And:
From:	hugh@hadamson.freeserve.co.uk (Hugh Adamson)
Dick

Thanks for taking the trouble to try and help me sort out my difficulty
with the 64ST camera adaptor.

As Mike said the adaptor is very short - not at all like the adaptor for
the ETX-90.  It is really just a quarter inch collar that converts the
thread on the telescope to a T mount thread.  When the camera is fitted
the camera mount is vrtually touching the back of the telescope and even
with the objective wound back as far as it will go I still can't focus
on infinity, I need about another eighth inch of movement.  So either
Meade designed it wrong (unlikely) or they built mine wrong (more
likely).

I also have the erecting prism for the ETX-70 which incorporates a x1.4
Barlow and neatly avoids the same problem by moving the focal plane back

Thanks for the help but I guess I will live with the problem as I don't
want to ship the ETX back to Meade from the UK.  At least I have no
problems focussing using eyepieces.

Kind regards

Hugh
Mike here: Run down to your local camera store and buy a set of "extension tubes" for your camera. I bought a set back in the 1960s and have now used them when I needed to place the camera further back on an adapter. The set I have has four different sizes, that can be combined in multiple lengths. They attach to the camera where the lens or T-Ring attaches.

And this:

Thanks for the idea but that will just make the problem worse! 
Extension tubes will enable me to focus even closer, not on infinity!  I
need to get the camera closer to the 'scope not further away and getting
it closer is a mechanical impossibility.

I suspect what I really need to do is get inside the scope and see if
the focus control can be adjusted to enable the objective to move a
little nearer the back of the 'scope but I am very reluctant to try and
disassemble the unit without some guidance.  It's probably fairly
straightforward when you know how, but....
Mike here again: Oops. I misread that last email from Dick. Keep us posted. One thought: you could add the "Shutan Mini-Tele Extender" (see the Accessories - Showcase Products page). Might help. Would certainly increase the magnification on the film.

Subject:	Meade Telescope
Sent:	Wednesday, June 13, 2001 17:11:13
From:	Joscarfas@aol.com
Hi Michael,
My name is Fausto and I just got a meade telescope ETX-70 however I've
been searching the WWW for a tutorial for this telescope 'cause the
booklet that came with it do not have too much information and i was
wondering if you know where can i get more information to learn all the
features that this telescope has.

Thanks.
Mike here: Well, there are some tutorials on this Site that will apply as well as TONS of information on using the ETX and Autostar models. Browse through the Site, especially the ETX-60AT, ETX-70AT Feedback pages (including the ones in the Feedback Archives) and the "Autostar Feedback" pages (including those in the archives). If you have any specific questions, drop me a note. If I can't answer them perhaps some other Site visitors will be able to help.

Subject:	Im having a problem with my etx-60....
Sent:	Tuesday, June 12, 2001 21:35:06
From:	ShagVVell69@aol.com
I recently recieved the ETX-60 as a present last christmas..however, im
a beginner sky watcher and i have read through the manual but cant seem
to get the telescope to magnify anything more than almost what the naked
eye or binoculars could see. I enjoy the autostar functions, but im
having trouble with them finding certain objects and although the guide
that came with the telescope shows that "This is about the same
magnification even smaller meade telescopes can achieve" and it shows a
picture of the moons surface with a crater as large as a lake in the
eyepiece..i can merely see it bigger than a marble with both the 9mm or
25 mm eyepeices. I would like to know if there is a way you can magnify
the image digitally through the autostar data base or if im doing
something wrong here. Much help would be appreciated. Thank you for your
time.  - Jeff Oliver
Texas
Mike here: The ETX-60AT is a a "short focal length" telescope, meaning that it won't be able to provide much magnification. Yes, you can add a 2X Barlow Lens to double the magnification but the practical usable magnification of ANY telescope is double the aperture in millimeters (or 120X for the ETX-60AT). The ETX-60AT makes a fine telescope to view wide expanses of the night sky but is not really suited for detailed views of the Moon and Planets. And no, there is no way to "magnify the image digitally through the autostar data base".

Subject:	495 on an ETX-60/70
Sent:	Tuesday, June 12, 2001 14:08:12
From:	starjourneyegroups@yahoo.com (Scott Horne)
>Question - can the Autostar 495 be used with the ETX70AT. I bought it to
>use with the DS114 but since I am returning DS114 I thought I'd see if I
>can salvage the Autostar.
Yes, it can.  And it works very well! :)  I did the same thing.  I'm
using the 495 autostar (firmware version 2.2ef) with my etx-60 and much
prefer it over the 494 autostar that came with the scope.  Somewhere in
the latest firmware versions, Meade added support for all the autostar
scopes.

=====
Scott Horne
http://starjourney.net
Honolulu, Hawaii

Subject:	ETX-70AT Camera Adaptor
Sent:	Tuesday, June 12, 2001 13:54:44
From:	hugh@hadamson.freeserve.co.uk (Hugh Adamson)
I have recently bought the Meade #64ST adaptor with the hope of trying
some prime focus lunar and terrestial photography with my ETX-70AT.
Unfortunately I have come across a problem - with either of my Pentax
SLRs coupled to the scope using a T adaptor it is not quite possible to
focus on infinity - about 70 ft is as far as I can get before the
telescope focus reaches the limit.

I have checked that I have the right Meade part and the T adaptor is
fine with other telephoto lenses I have.  It seems to me that my scope
may be out of spec but I am reluctant to send it back to Meade as I live
in the UK and it could be a long time before I see it again.

Has anyone else experienced this problem and does anyone know if it is
possible to adjust the focus limit?

Congratulations on a wonderful site Mike - I am a regular visitor and
have learned a lot from you and other ETX enthusiasts.

Thanks

Hugh Adamson
Mike here: I don't have the adapter for the ETX-70AT but it is possible that focusing problems could occur with some cameras, depending upon the distance to the focal plane of the camera.

Subject:	quick question
Sent:	Tuesday, June 12, 2001 10:46:37
From:	RMSatjcnp@aol.com
Hi. I'm confused and hope you can answer this very quick question.  Is
there a difference between the Meade ETX60AT and a Meade ETX60 (without
AT at the end)??

Thanks!

Rossana Seitter
Mike here: There is (or was) an ETX-60EC (and ETX-70EC) model. Like the ETX-90EC, it did not include the Autostar GOTO controller.

Subject:	ETX-60AT at Costco
Sent:	Tuesday, June 12, 2001 10:12:53
From:	mgimmey@gorge.net (Mike Gimmey)
Costco Wholesale will have the Meade ETX 60 for $128.99, and during
August 27 through September 2, they will have a coupn good for $30.00
off. This puts it at $98.99.

Subject:	EXT60AT Feedback
Sent:	Monday, June 11, 2001 21:35:26
From:	Typec2@aol.com
I just got some accessories for my ETX60 from the Telescope Warehouse.
(Very good prices and shipped right away. All arrived in good shape.)
One thing was the 90 degree viewfinder. In the position it mounts it
seems to be in the way a bit when viewing with the right eye. It can be
moved down to the side (maybe 45 degrees off from vertical) but I don't
like this angle. Seems disoriented to me. 
Have I attached this thing correctly?
  Thanks,
  Bill

Subject:	Cleaning question...
Sent:	Sunday, June 10, 2001 21:13:25
From:	cwren1@home.com (Charles Wren)
I've been reading through your site on how to clean my ETX70AT and am
still unsure how to proceed.  In one post, I read about how well the
LensPen does, then in another one I read about how bad they are for your
scope.  What is your opinion on this?

Also, I've saw one post regarding the purity of the alcohol to use.  So
far, all I've seen is 70% Isopropyl Alchohol.  Is 100% what I should
look for (if it's even available)?

One more question and I'll leave you alone.  I've noticed the last
several times I've used the scope that the planets and the moon seem to
have a coma along the left side.  With Mars, the blur is as big as the
planet.  Is this indicative of dirty optics?  My main lens does have
some spotting, but it doesn't seem obsessive to me (but I'm a beginner).
A couple of my eyepieces have some spots, but the blurring is occuring
with my other "clean" eyepieces also, so they don't seem the obvious
reason.

I'm sorry if you've answered these questions a thousand times, but I
couldn't find a "clear" answer under the cleaning section.

Thanks in Advance!
Charles
Mike here: There are many opinions and techniques on cleaning. I believe the ETX-70AT manual has some information. Use that as your best guide. It does sound like you may have some residue of dew condensation on the objective and/or eyepieces.

Subject:	ETX-70 and Coronado filter images
Sent:	Sunday, June 10, 2001 21:35:45
From:	soehnk@cableregina.com (Keith Soehn)
just a note...  I happened to notice an ad for Coronado Solarmax 40mm H
alpha solar filters in this month's July 2001 Astronomy Magazine and at
the bottom of the ad, there is a credit at the bottom attributed to Jack
Newton who took the images in the ad with the solar filter and an
ETX-70T scope.  (Don't know if this is the same as an ETX-70AT.)

Clear skies,
Keith
soehnk@cableregina.com
Mike here: I'm hoping to obtain a SolarMax from Coronado soon for review.

Subject:	digital camera help for etx and some observations
Sent:	Sunday, June 10, 2001 13:13:55
From:	trekkerj@ix.netcom.com (Joshua Langweil)
Hi.  I recently purchased an ETX-70AT telescope, and while it does a
good job showing a rich starfield and clusters, objects fainter than
Andromeda, for example, aren't really perceptable to me where I live.  I
have been thinking about getting a digital camera, and thought it might
be a interesting idea to combine the two and possibly get better images
to look at.

Do you know of any digital cameras that work well with this scope, and
particularly ones that will fit the T adapter?  I appreciate any help or
suggestions.  Love your sight, btw!

Thanks
-Josh
Mike here: About all you will be able to get good photos of will be the Moon, the Sun (with the proper solar filter), and perhaps Jupiter. You won't be able to do long duration photography with a digital camera (only some models can take exposures longer than a second and then only for a few seconds). But if you want to try, check out the Accessories - Astrophotography page. Also, see the new adapter from Scopetronix; it attaches to some types of digital cameras.

And:

Thanks for your response.  I do have one other question that is
troubling me, perhaps you could help.  On the ETX-70, i realize the
light gathering power is not that strong, but I have tried to view some
more prominent nebulae such as the North American nebula and the ring
nebula, pointing the scope to the correct location, but nothing is
there.  Should this scope be able to pick up something like the ring
nebula?  There is a significant amount of light pollution where I live,
but I am wondering how much of a difference that would make.  I am
trying to give the new scope a nice shakedown, but other than Mars right
now, there doesn't seem to be anything bright enough to see this time of
year. Thanks for any suggestions.
Mike here: M57 is magnitude 8.8 and 1.4x1.0 arc minutes in size. That is pretty faint for a significantly light-polluted area and pretty small for the ETX-70AT, even with the 9mm eyepiece (39X). Yes, the ETX-90 can see M57 at 48X although it is still small. But as magnification is increased (on any telescope), the light from the object is spread out over a larger area and so is dimmed, considerably in many cases. I haven't tried M57 with my ETX-70AT but will the next time the weather cooperates. As to other objects, if you stay up late looking at Mars, the heart of the Milky Way is just coming into view. That's a source of many nice objects for the ETX-70AT.

And my update:
I just looked at M57 with the ETX-70AT using both the 25mm and 9mm eyepieces. I did a 2-star Easy Align and then did a GOTO M57. It put it near the center of the 25mm FOV. I recognized it right away as I'm familiar with M57. It was not easy to see and averted vision was required. I centered it in the FOV and switched to the 9mm. M57 was still visible although very faint. Using averted vision again helped. So I can report that from my moderately dark location (with the Los Angeles lights to the north and east; just where Vega was) and a streetlight at the end of my short driveway (where I was standing) I could observe M57, the Ring Nebula. I then did a GOTO Mars. Very disappointing with either eyepiece. Just an orange disk with no details.

And this:

I guess it's hard to find something when you are not sure what you are
looking for, especially when it is so faint.  What percentage of the FOV
in the 25 mm lens did the ring nebula take up? Can you describe it. I
did a GOTO, and stared into the eyepiece for minutes, but saw nothing
but some stars....

I hear you about Mars, i was disappointed also. It's  slightly bigger in
my 5mm eyepiece, and I am hoping a 2x Barlow lens will help even
more...I have that one on order.
Mike here again: M57 was "pinhead" sized. Very small in the 25mm eyepiece.

And more:

Have you looked at M31 in the ETX70?  I stayed up until 1am the other
night to check it out, and even under the 5mm eyepiece, it was barely
noticeable, and didn't look too much different than I had seen it in
binoculars.  The only way I was able to spot it was when I noticed the
movement in the field of view.  M31 is mag 3.4 or 3.5.  I am wondering
how in the world I would be able to spot M57 which is, I believe mag 9?
If it's pinhead sized, how do you distiguish it from a star, and how
much magnification do you need to see any kind of ring structure...maybe
I should just save up for an ETX90 or 125 down the road...
Mike here: I noted this observation on my ETX-70AT report (linked from the top of the current ETX-60AT, ETX-70 Feedback page. M31 is very large but you can only see the nucleus from light polluted areas. Stars were pinpoints; M57 was the pinhead. But you are right; it is small and unless you know what you are looking for it can be missed. One of the excellent reasons to have star charts available when trying to locate objects. Then you can compare the star patterns and pin down the right location. It does appear larger in the 9mm eyepiece but is dimmer to the eye. You won't see any ring structure with the ETX-70AT, just a dim oval.

Subject:	etx-60 question
Sent:	Saturday, June 9, 2001 19:48:15
From:	degrbi@earthlink.net (degrbi)
I recently received an ETX-60 as a gift and have enjoyed the scope a
great deal, especially the Autostar function.  It sure beats messing
around with declination and right ascention to find what you are looking
for. Anyway, my real question is: Is it possible or plausible to convert
an ETX-60 to an ETX-70?  I notice in the spec sheets that the barrel
diameter and focal length are identicle in both instruments.  It appears
a special tool may be needed to remove the 60mm lens and tighten the
70mm lens into place.  Cost may also be a consideration.  Please let me
know.  thank you, Derek
Mike here: I'm not certain how close the mounts are to being identical but they may be. But where would you get the ETX-70AT OTA?

And:

From:	sherrodc@ipa.net (Clay Sherrod)
NO...you cannot effectively convert and ETX 60 into a 70 for the
following reasons:

1)  you will have trouble finding an optical element (front lens) as
they are not available as a common replacement nor purchase item;

2)  being a refractor telescope, even though the tube o.d. might be
identical, the light cone within the tubing that is being focused from
the objective lens will be different for each lens; each model is
BAFFLED according to the specific focal ratio (not focal length, as they
are nearly the same in that);

3) because of the baffles I could see that you could retrofit an ETX 70
with a 60 lens without vignetting of the optical path, but not the
direction you are asking about.

NOW...that being said...you "could" affix an ETX 70 tube assembly only
(if you could find one) onto an ETX 60 mounting as the mountings are
identical in all respects.

Hope this helps.

Clay Sherrod

Subject:	DS114 problems and ETX70AT question
Sent:	Saturday, June 9, 2001 14:19:03
From:	mike@greenzalis.com (Mike Greenzalis)
Love your site! What a treasure chest of info for beginning astronomers
- like me!

I bought a Meade DS114 as my first scope and couldn't be unhappier. The
"play" in the mount is totally unacceptable. One can't even touch the
scope to focus without pushing the object out of view. I called Meade
and they sent a new mount and it has the same problem - must be a design
flaw. I guess the reason I am writing this is to warn beginners of the
problems they will face with this scope. It is not what a "first scope"
should be. I purchased an ETX 70AT and am much happier with it! It is
much sturdier.

Question - can the Autostar 495 be used with the ETX70AT. I bought it to
use with the DS114 but since I am returning DS114 I thought I'd see if I
can salvage the Autostar.

Mike
-- 
Mike Greenzalis
Southborough, MA
mike@greenzalis.com
Mike here: Unfortunately, the 495 is not supported on the ETX models. However, there are some tips about using Autostar models on the "wrong" scopes on the Autostar Information page.

Subject:	Web Site
Sent:	Friday, June 8, 2001 10:29:38
From:	mbagini@realmedia.com (Martino Bagini)
I found your site on an search engine. I'm looking for my first
telescope right now. My first choice was to buy ETX-70AT, but I'm really
in doubt. Should I invest now on an 90EC model ? is the $$$ difference
worth ?

Can you send me some pictures made with both 70 and 90 models for me to
see the diference ?

If you can help me with that, I'd be very thankfull.

Best regards, congratulations for the great site.

Martino Bagini 
Mike here: See the comments about the -70At and 90 models on the Feedback pages. Also, there are many photos taken with ETX-90 models and I think some with the -70AT model on the Astrophotography pages. But do read my comments about the ETX-70AT on the Helpful Information: Buyer/New User Tips page.

Subject:	allen wrench supplied with ETX-70AT too small
Sent:	Friday, June 8, 2001 7:49:35
From:	Greg.Menzel@westgroup.com (Menzel, Greg)
I purchased an ETX-70AT through Amazon a few weeks ago and like it so
far. However, I needed to reset the focus knob (as described in the 70AT
manual) and found that the supplied allen wrench was too small.
Fortunately, I had another allen wrench set that contained one of the
correct size. Has anyone else received the wrong size allen wrench with
their 60/70AT? No big deal, just a curiosity.

Greg Menzel

Subject:	ETX-60AT at Costco
Sent:	Thursday, June 7, 2001 23:29:06
From:	cbdane@pacbell.net (C. Brent Dane)
I was flipping through a little Costco (membership warehouse like Sam's,
etc.) brochure that I received in the mail yesterday.  They advertise an
ETX-60AT for a warehouse price of $129.66 and include a $30 coupon,
reducing the price to below $100!  Sounds like a deal to me.

bd

--

C. Brent Dane
cbdane@pacbell.net

Brent's R/C Electronics Page
http://www.cliftech.com/

Subject:	power supply
Sent:	Thursday, June 7, 2001 17:50:48
From:	Jpmrph3@aol.com
I would like to know if Meade sells a power supply for the ETX-60 and
ETX-70. can you or someone tell me as that drumming rabbit is making a
good living off of me.

J.P. Murphy III
Mike here: See the Meade announcement on my ETX site.

Subject:	Re: Database of ETX-70
Sent:	Wednesday, June 6, 2001 22:07:15
From:	jmrayon@easynet.fr (Jean Michel Rayon)
Yes, but have you a DataBase of ETX-70 ?
Mike here: Sorry that I didn't understand your initial question. See the Database info on the Autostar Information page.

Subject:	etx-90ra
Sent:	Wednesday, June 6, 2001 11:22:11
From:	wmeiding@byelectric.com (wmeiding)
I am new at star gazing.  It is really quite fun.  I have just gotten a
Meade ETX-70, but I have a chance to get a new ETX-90RA for a very
reasonable price.  I have been a little disappointed in looking at the
planets with the ETX-70.  As I have said, I am very new at this and as
of yet I have not tried my Autostar, although I have been reading the
directions.

My question is "Which telescope in your opinion will be the most
functional longer?  If one was to choose between closer view or quicker
and easier view, what should one chooose?  Will I miss not having the
Autostar?"  Or is it a convience that I can live without?  I should also
say that I have not spent a lot of time looking at stars, mostly the
moon and the planets.

Wayne Meidinger
South Dakota
Mike here: Amateur astronomers have lived for a few centuries without an Autostar so it is likely that you can too. If you take the time to learn the night sky (it is easy) you will get a lot of enjoyment from either scope. The two telescopes do have their differences in how they perform but if you want better views of planets and the Moon, the ETX-90 would be better for you than the ETX-70AT (which is more suited to wide field viewing).

Subject:	Database of ETX-70
Sent:	Wednesday, June 6, 2001 9:25:42
From:	jmrayon@easynet.fr (Jean Michel Rayon)
Thanks you for your site.

I search the etx-70 DataBase (stars and objects)

Cordially of France

Jean Michel

Subject:	Re: What about my ETX-60?
Sent:	Sunday, June 3, 2001 9:44:13
From:	sherrodc@ipa.net (Clay Sherrod)
The ETX 60 and 70 are great scopes and among my favorite.  They are
wide-field richest-field refractors and need to be considered and
appreciated just for that.  Because of their VERY short focal lengths,
they are NOT suitable for high power views of the planets or double
stars.  Nonetheless, the field of view and contrast of these scopes on a
very dark and moonless night is breathtaking....something we CANNOT get
nor appreciate in larger scopes.

So, the ETX 60 is a trade-off between this wonderful deep sky wide field
panorama and the lack of its ability to magnify; at BEST you can expect
no more than about 120x out of it.  It is a wonderful "ready-to-go"
scope that performs well within its limits and has its strong points
OVER larger scopes....you can actually see the North American Nebula,
all of the Pleiades, the entire Andromeda galaxy's large angular size,
all of Praesepe, M81 and 82 in the same field of view, the star cluster
in Coma Berenices....the long tail of a comet that is hidden by the edge
of the field of view of the larger scopes.

You cannot substitute a new optical system with any degree of success on
the ETX 60/70 mount, and I would strongly ask you to really explore the
true merits that this little scope possesses!  Once you realize how
totally different an instrument it is than the big 11" you are using,
you will like it even MORE!

Clay Sherrod
    -----Original Message-----
    Dear Dr. Sherrod,
     
    I have been a happy owner of a Celestron C-11 for many years now.

    Just for fun, I purchased an ETX-60 Last Christmas from my employer
    (I am a pharmacist for Wal-Mart).  I felt certain that the ETX-60
    would be better than a typical "department store" telescope.

    I am impressed with the electronics/motors, however, even with the
    highest power of the eyepieces that are supplied, Saturn and Jupiter
    (as examples) are no bigger than unimpressive tiny discs.  I ordered
    more powerful eyepieces and a barlow from Astronomics, however the
    results are disappointing.

    I realize that I have been spoiled by my C-11.

    Do you know of any way to improve the ETX-60's performance such as
    perhaps purchasing/installing a larger objective lens?  Does the
    fork assembly allow an installation of a larger ETX optical tube
    assembly?  Any other suggestions?
     
    Thank-You, sir, for your help.
     
    Sincerely, 
     
    Mike
Mike W. here: I agree. See my ETX-70AT comments on the Helpful Information: Buyer/New User Tips page.

Subject:	juice! and rolling blackouts
Sent:	Saturday, June 2, 2001 23:16:18
From:	Jpmrph3@aol.com
hey you,

What is the deal on the  power supply for my ETX-60. My scope should be
booked for assault-on-batteries! I would rather buy one from Meade than
go to the shack and possibly screw up things due to voltage
irregularities.

great site. glad to know there are other goofballs out there. as a rank
beginner i like the input of ideas. I generally use my etx-60 (little
Elvis) as a spotter scope for it's bigger brother an 8" dob. (Tubo). Or
when i just want to carry a light load out on the lawn.

Got to go . have a date with the Bush twins. They love me as i'm 21 (2
times +)

Thanks, J P Murphy III

PS  When can we expect Radio Shack to use the phrase "The Shack" like
"Mickey D's" for the burger joint. Maybe i should copyright it.

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