ETX-60, ETX-70, & ETX-80 USER FEEDBACK
[Home!]
Last updated: 27 April 2006

This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade ETX-60AT, ETX-70AT, ETX-80AT-TC, and ETX-80BB. Additional information 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:	ETX-70AT in equatorial mode
Sent:	Wednesday, April 26, 2006 22:54:41
From:	Markus Fankhauser (markus@zero-and-one.com)
I have a question regarding the Meade ETX-70AT in equatorial mode. I
bought the instrument yesterday at ebay and hope that I will have it
shortly. Is it possible to set up the scope via a wedge in equatorial
mode and use all the goto features that the scope has in alt/az mode? I
want to connect the scope to my pc and use TheSky software to control
it, what about that?
Regards,
Markus  
Mike here: Yes, you can use it in Polar mode. If the ETX-70 comes with the standard Autostar #494 you will need to purchase a #506 serial cable. Alternatively, you can use an Autostar #497 and buy or make a #505 serial cable. Info on making a #505 cable is on the Helpful Information: Autostar Info page. If your computer doesn't have a real RS-232 serial port but has USB, you will need a serial-USB adapter. See the article "Autostar and USB" on the Helpful Information: Autostar Info page for more on USB.
Subject:	etx 60 w/ hand controller
Sent:	Tuesday, April 25, 2006 04:17:31
From:	Jason Hicks (jhicks90@charter.net)
I have a etx 60 with a standard hand controller.  When I turn on my
scope it goes through the warm up were it moves in both directions.  But
after that sometimes it does not seem to work but then it does after 15
seconds or so other times after the warm up it will work immediately. 
What could be causing this problem?
 
Thanks,
Jason
Mike here: What do you mean by "it does not seem to work"? Do you mean slewing? Have you tried changing the slew speed?

And:

yes, it will not slew.  I have tried changing speeds but it does
nothing. Other times it works fine.  But it always does the up and right
slew like it should.  Any ideas?
Mike here: The obvious problems would include low battery power or loose connections. Check the condition of the jack and cable end; look for bent pins.
Subject:	ETX-80 & Autostar 497
Sent:	Sunday, April 23, 2006 21:02:50
From:	Adam Skowronski (adam.s@comcast.net)
I am an owner of ETX-80 scope that ships with 494 Autostar hand box. The
hand box seems to have the newest Autostar 494/497 firmware 13Ec (more
recent than 41Ec). ETX-80 comes equipped with an internal clock that is
used at startup by 494 13Ec to set date and time. This is a very handy
feature that is 'kind of' missing from 497 41Ec. Apparently 41Ec had
been written before ETX-80 was shipped and  it does not read date and
time from the ETX-80's clock at cold startup. However, it does pick up
the clock  when it is warm started (e.g. when it gets rebooted from
autostar updater). When it does so, it displays 'Getting Time' message.
The work around would be to provide a warm restart 'Reboot' option from
Setup menu. Would it be hard for you to add that new feature to your
patch?
 
My ultimate wish list is
 
1) Add ETX-80 information
2) For ETX-80 models skip time/date prompt during startup and go to
Getting Time function that reads date/time from ETX-80 internal clock.
3) Enable editing/entering of landmarks manually (alt/az). Useful for
entering data from heavens-above.com. That would be a nice feature for
those who prefer to track satellites manually.
 
Regards
Adam
From:	richard seymour (rseymour@wolfenet.com)
>... Apparently 41Ec had
> been written before ETX-80 was shipped and  it does not read date and 
> time from the ETX-80's clock at cold startup. However, it does pick up 
> the clock  when it is warm started (e.g. when it gets rebooted from 
> autostar updater). When it does so, it displays Getting Time message. 
> The work around would be to provide a warm restart Reboot option from 
> Setup menu. Would it be hard for you to add that new feature to your patch?

There is a 'setup/reset', but it's not a 'warm start'
I am surprised that it doesn't find the clock even if you tell it
it's an ETX-90, since the 'is there a clock?' dialog does not
care about the model numbers (as long as it's an ETX)

You might try v42Ed, which was just posted by Meade on Friday.
However i see that it doesn't know the "ETX-80" as a model, either.

> My ultimate wish list is

> 1) Add ETX-80 information
> 
> 2) For ETX-80 models skip time/date prompt during startup and go to 
> Getting Time function that reads date/time from ETX-80 internal clock.
> 
> 3) Enable editing/entering of landmarks manually (alt/az). Useful for 
> entering data from heavens-above.com. That would be a nice feature for 
> those who prefer to track satellites manually.

You can get -close- to (3) by using the Alt/Az display as a GoTo
command (bring it up, then press GoTo, then key in the coordinates,
ending each entry with [enter].
It will then GoThere, and then you can "Add Landmark".

(1) and (2) are beyond my patch level (and the ETX90 serves as
"information" adequate for operations.)

I'll send a note to Meade about their omission
have fun
--dick

Subject:	etx60 vs etx80
Sent:	Saturday, April 22, 2006 15:49:23
From:	Tim Gavin (tegavin@cox.net)
do you know the rough light gathering difference between the 60 and the
80?
thanks
Mike here: Light gathering increases as the area of the aperture increases. So you can determine the area of the 60mm aperture and compare that to the area of the 80mm. Simple math.
Subject:	etx 70 pigybacking 
Sent:	Saturday, April 22, 2006 11:14:17
From:	GARRISONVILLEPWN@aol.com
is it possible to pigyback a meade 97d2 90 mm f11 spotting scope on a
standard etx 70 ? are the gears strong enough to slew without excessive
wear ? i am a poor astroomer and could only afford a xtx 70, but got
luckey on e-bay with the 97d2. as you probbbaly know the spotting scope
is 1000mm focal length as opposed to etx 70  350mm focal length . i know
the sell piggyback brackets for 35mm cameras for this scope but was
wondering  if it would cause excessive strain. or should i just save my
pennies and buy a lx 90 gps ( my dream scope) thanks again opticsfreak
rich at garrisonville pawn
Mike here: I suspect you would experience the same slippage problems as when I piggybacked an ETX-90 on an ETX-90 (http://www.weasner.com/etx/astrophotography/gallery.html#dualetx).
Subject:	ETX-80 - Shakiness when adjusting focus - fixable or normal?
Sent:	Monday, April 17, 2006 09:26:53
From:	Steve Taylor (maclifer@gmail.com)
I absolutely love my new ETX-80.  However, one thing that i'm not sure
about I decided to ask you:  When i'm focusing the scope, the objects in
the eyepiece shake ("jitter") so much as to be nearly impossible to see
as I fine focus down.  Not that the scope is not working, but i'm not
sure how much the knob can be tightened on the scope to steady it in the
fork... any ideas if that is the problem?

My main interest is the moon and i'm strictly working on observing 'ol
Luna right now and have been blown away by the 9mm eyepiece with the 2x
Barlow being utilized.

I would eventually like to take digital photos of the moon with this
scope, and have an excellent camera to utilize, but the shakiness is
making me wonder if it will be acceptable or not.

Thanks for your great site!

-- 
Steve Taylor
Mike here: Hand-induced image vibrations is a common problem, with many telescopes, not just the ETX. There are some simple solutions to avoid it. Not extend the tripod legs to their full height and/or add some extra weight to the tripod. Both improve stability and reduce vibrations. Or you can use an "alligator" clamp style clothes pin as a lever. Or you can add a focusing cable (see the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page) or an electric motor (I don't recall seeing a commercial one yet for the ETX-80). Lastly, if none of the above appeal to you, just tweak the focus knob, remove your hand, let the vibrations settle down, and repeat as necessary.
Subject:	meade ext60
Sent:	Saturday, April 15, 2006 22:26:04
From:	Tim Gavin (tegavin@cox.net)
I really like your web site.  I am new to astronomy and your site is
extremely helpful and interesting.  I have inherited a etx60 with
autostar and an etx80 w/o auto star and a tripod.  I see that the front
lense will unscrew, can I remove the front lense from the 80 and put it
into the 60 scope so that i would have and 80 w/autostar and a tripod?
Your answer is very much appreciated.
email is tegavin@cox.net
Mike here: Not without doing some possibly major mods to the ETX-60 tube.
Subject:	ETX70AT THREAD SIZE NEEDED
Sent:	Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:17:08
From:	Walter SMITH (wallyjulia@scarboro.fslife.co.uk)
would you please let me know what the 'THREAD SIZE' is on the ETX70AT
Scope as I want to fit a SOLAR FILTER on the front end or big bit if you
know what I mean.
Thanks
Wal
Mike here: Sorry, don't know the exact measurements.
Subject:	solar filter for etx-80?
Sent:	Monday, April 10, 2006 14:25:13
From:	cory reder (usul03@yahoo.com)
Have they made a solar filter for the etx-80 yet?I can't find one, and
would like to do some solar observing. I'm a 3 month old neubie, and
have been learning and seeing allot with my little etx-80. What scope do
you suggest for me next?- I do have a celestron 114-eq(but the mount is
such a p.o.s. i dont ever use it). I want to eventually get into
astrophotography and i enjoy planets,nebulae, and star clusters the
most. Just looking for alittle insight.-----thanx---cory, laporte,
ind.-----
Mike here: I don't recall hearing about one but you can always make one; see the "AstroSolar Safety Film" on the Accessory Reviews: Filters page. As to what you get next, since you didn't give me a budget or portability figure, go for the LX200 GPS 16". That will satisfy all your requirements just fine!!!
Subject:	ETX-80 and autostar
Sent:	Wednesday, April 5, 2006 16:48:56
From:	Mike Stoer (mikel_s@verizon.net)
I recently purchased an ETX-80 to have as an on the road scope for
traveling. When I got it the autostar 494 that came with it had a fault
that caused it to constantly display "sending data" in the display. 
Meade is sending a new autostar after they get this one back. I was
wondering if any one has used a 497 with the ETX-80 and if so which
telescope they selected? The ETX-80 does not show under the available
choices. I have downloaded 41Ec (The most current version available on
the Meade site) but it isn't there either.
 
Any advice would be appreciated.
 
Thanks
Mike
Mike here: You should be able to use the ETX-70 reasonably well. I don't know if the various parameters are different once you connect the #497 and CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES on the ETX-80.
Subject:	ETX-70AT or Quasar DS-60EC for a starter?Please help...
Sent:	Monday, April 3, 2006 18:27:33
From:	Udhayakumar Ratnasamy (shobauy@yahoo.com)
Could you suggest a good one for an amateur for under $200, please? I am
thinking of buying either an ETX-70AT or a Quasar DS-60EC; I am totally
confused after looking at the various models available in the market.
Thanks a ton. Udhay
Mike here: I have no experience with the DS models but you can read my comments on the ETX-70 on the Helpful Information: Buyer/New User Tips page. Also, you can read some ETX-60/70/80 comments (all essentially the same telescope design) and DS model comments from other users on the Helpful Information: User Observations page. Keep in mind that you need to decide what YOUR expectations are and whether either model will meet that.
Subject:	ETX 70 AT HOW TO REMOOVE THE MOUNT
Sent:	Sunday, April 2, 2006 09:48:29
From:	andrew munson (ajmunson@hotmail.com)
PLEASE CAN YOU HELP.

I AM THINKING OF USING MY OLD MEADE ETX 70AT AS A GUIDE SCOPE BUT I
NEEED TO REMOOVE THE TUDE FROM ITS MOUNT. HAVE YOU ANY IDEAR HOW TO DO
THIS WHO WHERE I COULD OBTAIN THIS INFORMATION?

REGARDS,
ANDY.
Mike here: Please read the Email Etiquette item on the ETX Home Page; it mentions the use of ALL CAPS. Thanks for understanding. As to removing the OTA from the fork arms, this is not easily done but see the article "ETX-70AT Repair Guide" on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page for some info.

And:

thanks for getting back to me so quickly and sorry about the caps lock,
will know in future.
Regards,
Andy.

Feedback Archives

Check the Feedback Archives for previous editions of the User Feedback pages.


Go to the ETX Home Page.


Copyright © 2006 Michael L. Weasner / etx@me.com
Submittals Copyright © 2006 by the Submitter
URL = http://www.weasner.com/etx/archive/feedbackApr06/70.html