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Last updated: 25 January 2010
This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade ETX-90RA (originally known as the "ETX Astro"). Comments on accessories and feedback items appropriate to other ETX, DSX, 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 for posting. Please use an appropriate Subject Line on your message per the Site Email Etiquette. Thanks. Remember, tips described on this site may invalidate the warranty on your telescope or accessories. Neither the submitter nor myself are responsible for any damage caused by using any contributed tips.

Subject:	etx-90ra question
Sent:	Monday, January 25, 2010 13:58:34
From:	Michael Herboltzheimer (
I have one of these that has been in the box pretty much since I bought
it. It is , of course completely new, except that the piece of foam
(looks like foam anyway) that is glued behind the silvered spot on the
corrector/objective lens has apparently slid down from gravity about
1/4" so that it obscures a small amount of the objective.

Is this a significant problem? How much would it take to fix it? 

Mike here: If the secondary mirror mount looks like mine did back in 1999 (see the page, then it has slipped. For awhile back in the early days of the original ETX, Meade would repair this. I don't know if they will still do that given the age of the telescope. If you want to try to fix it yourself, see the article "ETX-90RA Secondary Baffle Fix" on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page.
Subject:	Original model ETX RA LED question
Sent:	Sunday, January 24, 2010 10:07:32
From:	Paul Boudreaux (
I have a question about your recent response to Cliff about the ETX RA.
You asked if the LED lit up when he turned on the ETX RA. Do you recall
when Meade added an LED to the ETX RA line? I recall that I had to add
an LED myself to the ETX RA since mine did not come with an LED on it. I
wired it to the on/off switch inside the ETX and cut a small hole to
epoxy mount the LED and 10K resistor.
Paul Boudreaux
Mike here: Oops! You're right! The original ETX did not have a power-on indicator LED. I was mis-remembering since my ETX-90RA does have a power-on indicator (from the Microstar II+).
Subject:	Meade ETX 90 RA convert to AT via ETX 70
Sent:	Thursday, January 21, 2010 17:01:16
From:	Paul Lara (
Will the ETX 90 RA fit on the same chassis as the etx 70 AT?

There is one on ebay cheap.


Mike here: See the article "Putting ETX-90 on ETX-70 forks" on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page.


Is an ext 70 AT mount worth the $100.00?

Thanks for the super quick response.
Mike here: Whether the mount is worth $100 to you, only you can say. Do you NEED the GOTO system and electronic control over the DEC axis? Do you NEED to mount in Alt/Az? If the answer to both is YES, then it will be worth it to you, if the mount is in good shape.


Thanks again.

Part of the fun, to me is learning how to find the correct objects in
the sky, but I don't want it to be too much of a hassle for the kids.

Great advice, and something to think about.  GREAT SITE YOU HAVE. I am
gonna "waste," as my wife would say, hours looking through it

Mike here: GOTO systems have their benefits, especially if you live in light-polluted areas.
Subject:	Meade ETX 90
Sent:	Friday, January 8, 2010 15:25:34
From:	clif Welch (
I have recently acquired subject telescope and know nothing about it. 
Do you have any ideas where I might get an owners manual.  I will send
you a picture if that will help you determine what it is that I have.


Mike here: See the ETX FAQ page.


Thanks for your prompt reply!  I check out the web site before and after
my email and I still did not see the answer to my question regarding a
owners manual.  Also, I am still not sure as to what I have.  Could I
send you a picture?
Mike here: You mean you couldn't find the item "Q. Where do I find manuals online?" on the ETX FAQ page on my ETX Site Home Page? Feel free to send a photo.


My bad!  I found the manuals and thank you very much!  My ETX seems to
be much older and does not have the fancy electronics and has manual
controls.  There is also an on off switch and what appears to be a North
/ South switch on the bottom.  I put in new batteries but nothing seems
to happen when I turn the switch on.  I have attached three pictures for
your perusal.

The focus control knob seems to be very stiff to turn.

Thank You So Much For Your Time!



Mike here: Glad you found the manuals. The ETX you have is the original model, first known as the "ETX", "ETX Astro", and "ETX Model M", and then later as the "ETX-90RA". It is the one I started with back in 1996 (and still have). It is a great little telescope if you will take the time to learn your way around the night sky. Does the red LED illuminate when you switch the power on? If so, can you hear the motor inside the base running? You won't see any movement in the telescope since it moves like a clock hour hand, except that it takes 24 hours to go completely around instead of 12 hours like with a clock. As to the focus knob, stiffness may be due to lack of use. Many user modified or replaced the small knob. Some focus accessories are discussed on the Accessory Reviews: Miscellaneous page. Also, lots of focus mods on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page. If you want to know more about what you can see with the ETX, read through my ETX comments on the Helpful Information: Buyer/New User Tips page as well as the ETX-90 comments on the Helpful Information: User Observations page. Ignore any references to the AutoStar or EC Handcontroller, which the ETX-90RA does not have.


One more question and I hope I can stop bothering you!  The front lens
is missing off the view finder.  Where would you look to find parts or a
replacement view finder.  Gosh, I hope that was not covered in your web
site posts.

                                             Thank You So Much!

Mike here: Try Telescope Warehouse (link on the Astronomy Links page). If he doesn't have one, you might consider an alternative finderscope; see the Accessory Reviews: Finderscopes page. There are also some finderscope articles on the Helpful Information: Telescope Tech Tips page.


Thank you so much for all your help and patience!  The Telescope
Warehouse took care of all my needs at a very reasonable price.  Both
you and William Vorce are very, very nice people!

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