Last updated: 28 August 2005
This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade ETX-90RA (originally known as the "ETX Astro"), the ETX-90EC, and the ETX-90AT. Comments on accessories and feedback items appropriate to other ETX and DS 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-90 RA
Sent:	Saturday, August 27, 2005 04:25:41
From:	Bob Hammond (
im having a problem with my new etx 90 ra the flip mirror is not seating
right and everything looks out of collimation the collimation is perfect
thru the camera port and did seem to get better looking thru the eye
piece with the mirror up the way it is suppose dto be when observing
after ithe flip mirror was worked back and forth a few times but it is
still not as good as it should be what can i do to solve this without
having to send bact the scope to meade.
Thanks  Bob
Mike here: If it a new telescope and still under warranty, then sending it back to Meade or exchanging it at your dealer is the best choice. However, if those are not options, there are articles on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page on the flip mirror as well as collimation. Keep in mind that collimating an ETX is not easy without a LOT of patience; it is easy to make things worse than they already are.


Thanks Mike....It is in collimation the problem is in the flip mirror i
will look at the tech tips on the flip mirror have a nice day.
I will let you know one thing maybe you can help with if looking thru
the camera port through a eyepiece and the collimation is perfect then i
look thru the eyepiece like in going to view the stars and the
collimation is bad it should be in the flip mirror i think and it did
get some better as i worked the flip mirror back and forth what do you
Mike here: If the collimation is OK looking through the rear port then that means that the main optical components are collimated. The flip mirror obviously needs to be in perfect optical alignment to take advantage of the good collimation. If flipping the mirror back and forth helps, it could be that something just needed to be worked loose or "knocked" out of the way.


Thanks Mike i will try and see if i can get the flip mirror back where
it belongs flipping it back and forth if this does not work i will check
the tech tips and try and figure this out before i send it back to

Subject:	Photo of EXT 90 pointing down
Sent:	Tuesday, August 16, 2005 20:34:30
From:	Robert B. White (
I read the question with the photo appended, and with the answer I am
now confused. As I understand it, the photo shows the OTA facing down,
but north (because isn't the face of the mounting plate supposed to face
north?). Wouldn't rotating the OTA 90 degrees point it south? (I know
this sounds a lot like "whose on first" but I have found the Meade
instructions terrible at best and I don't know if I have got them right
because in the two months I have had my scope there has not yet been a
clear night. I'm getting lots of practice but at what, I'm not always
sure. There are scores of us who appreciate your site and what you do
for us.


Mike here: Rotating the OTA "OTA 90 degrees upward" (as I indicated) will make the OTA parallel to the fork arms, which are pointing to the North, not South. Rotating the OTA 180 degrees in Right Ascension from the position in the photo will point it South.
Subject:	Your Help, Suggestions, Please. ETX-90 and accessories
Sent:	Saturday, August 13, 2005 09:17:52
From: (
A few years ago my wife & I (backyard very casual viewers) went quickly
from an ETX-70, to a 90 & on to a 125. The 125 was heavy enough, it
quickly gathered more dust than starlight. We sold them all & gave up
for a while.  I got a chance to buy a basic ETX-90 with field tripod (no
Autostar) at a "firesale" price. I bought the Daisy Red-Dot finderscope,
a Meade 2x Barlow & their seires 5000 16mm Super Wide Angle lens. I am
trying to get ready for Fall/Winter viewing. I have repeatedly gone
though the Meade Polar Alignment instruction without useable results.
Briefly, Meade tells me to attach the scope on the tripod with the table
top tripod leg holes on either side of the North leg, I have done that.
Then when I set my Latitude (39.87) my scope points DOWN (see my photo).
If I rotate it 180 degrees, I cannot point the North leg North. Do you
know what I am doing wrong? I CAN read & follow directions, yet I feel
like a dunce!

Mike Isenberg
Decatur, Illinois

Mike here: From the photo it looks like you have it mounted OK. Just rotate the OTA 90 degrees upward to point it at Polaris.
Subject:	electric focus
Sent:	Wednesday, August 10, 2005 13:56:52
From:	Andy Lancour (
My ETX 90 was purchased used and has a Meade electric focuser. It works
fine except at near overhead viewing the right side of the focuser seems
to rub on the inside fork arm, before it reaches DEC stop. I took it off
and realize the problem you have reaching the knob at high DEC viewing,
so I put it back on. It still hits the fork arm. Am I the only one with
this problem? I searched the site and found nothing. Thanks, Mike.
Mike here: I don't recall any comments on this. We'll see if anyone responds.
Subject:	Meade ETX90AT or ETX90EC.
Sent:	Wednesday, August 3, 2005 05:43:46
From:	Norman D.Ross Jr. (
I am very interested in pursuing a hobby in Astronomy at my ripe age of
48 (smile). I am considering the ETX series and I want to know a few
things. Please assist me with my specific questions:

1.  AT or EC? Which is the new model or which is better?
2. Is the 90 a good beginning telescope?
3. Is UTC a good investment?
4. I desire to use a Macintosh Notebook to drive the telescope, and I
wonder if you have any experience with the software?
5. I want to drive the telescope and view the image on my notebook too!
Is it possible? What accessories are required? Basically, I want to
shoot pictures.
6. If you wanted to do all I want to do...and had $1,000.00 what do you
suggest and my initial investment? Give it to me straight (smile).


Mike here: See the FAQ page for info on EC vs AT. Basically same telescope, different bundle. Finding an EC is difficult now. As you can tell from the articles on my ETX Site, the ETX-90 is a "Mighty" telescope. For more, feel free to read the User Observations and my experiences (on the Buyer/New User Tips page). UTHC is a great investment. A Macintosh can control the Autostar. See the Autostar Info page Macintosh articles; also see the Software Reviews, notably Scopedriver and Astroplanner. You can view the image on a computer BUT that takes a lot of patience, some equipment, and experience. You might want to wait until you get some more experience before going there. As to your budget, keep in mind that you will probably want to buy some extra eyepieces, or at least a 2X Barlow Lens (Meade #126).


One last question before going to bed (smile).

Please suggest the basic accessories I should buy with the telescope to
get started. (Book, eye pieces, software, etc.).

Mike here: Before you run out and start buying accessories you need to decide just how you will use the telescope and what you want to do with it. After you get some basic experience then you will be able to spend your money more wisely. What I said about eyepieces still applies though.


Thank you, and I will take that advise. My dilemma is that I hate to
wait for things to arrive in the mail. I am living in Japan and prefer
to get a package that will keep me entertained for at least a few months
before I am dying for additional items. But I guess I will buy a
telescope and the barlow 2x converter only...and see how it goes.

Thank you
Mike here: It is better to wait than to get a bunch of accessories that you won't use. Learn the telescope, learn the sky, learn how to observe.


I gotcha! (smile). But being a tekkie type I want everything automated


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