Last updated: 16 June 2000

ETX-60AT & ETX-70AT Press Release (5/11/00) Meade ETX-60AT and ETX-70AT Page (5/20/00)

ETX-60AT & ETX-70AT Press Release

Meade Instruments Corp. Introduces New Products and Expands Facility in Mexico

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 8, 2000--Meade Instruments Corp. (Nasdaq:MEAD) today announced that it is in the process of nearly doubling the size of its assembly facility in Tijuana, Mexico, from 26,000 square feet to approximately 50,000 square feet.

Full utilization of the additional space will include the addition of approximately 70 new employees, bringing the total in Mexico to approximately 150 employees. The expansion is not expected to have any effect on head count at the company's headquarters in Irvine. The company also announced the introduction of two new telescopes -- the ETX-60AT and ETX-70AT. These new telescopes, both short-focus refractors that are supplied complete with a new version of the company's highly acclaimed Autostar Computer Controller, will retail for approximately $299 and $349, respectively.

The additional capacity in Mexico, expected to be available within 60 days, will facilitate assembly of the ETX-60AT and ETX-70AT as well as other products and components.

In its ongoing efforts to reduce backlog on many of its higher-end telescopes, Meade also announced, it is continuing to expand its optical and mechanical manufacturing capacity at the company's headquarters in Irvine.

"We believe that these new ETX models may be the most revolutionary telescopes ever developed for the beginning or casual observer," said John C. Diebel, Meade's chairman and chief executive officer.

"At extremely attractive price points, the ETX-60AT and ETX-70AT include high-resolution optical systems and automatically locate any astronomical object in the sky at the push of a button. The additional assembly capacity in Tijuana will be instrumental in meeting demand for these and other products and components."

Meade is a leading designer and manufacturer of optical products including telescopes and accessories for the beginning to serious amateur astronomer. Meade also offers a complete line of binoculars for the casual observer to the serious sporting or birding observer. The company distributes its products worldwide through a network of specialty retailers, mass merchandisers and foreign distributors. Additional information on Meade is available at www.meade.com.

"Safe Harbor" statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: The matters discussed in this news release may contain comments and forward-looking statements based on current plans, exceptions, events, and financial and industry trends that may affect the company's future operating results and financial position. Such statements involve risks and uncertainties that cannot be predicted or quantified and that may cause future activities and results of operations to differ materially from those discussed above. For additional information, refer to the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

CONTACT: Meade Instruments Corp., Irvine
Brent W. Christensen, 949/451-1450
Silverman Heller Associates, Los Angeles
Philip Bourdillon or Eugene Heller, 310/208-2550

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