Last updated: 9 December 2001
Subject:	first light with the ETX-90EC
Sent:	Monday, August 13, 2001 23:19:37
From: (S. Craig Morris)
First, a heartfelt 'thank you' for providing your website. It has helped
me tremendously.

After much debate, I finally decided to sell my 8" SCT (due to the the
size and cumbersome setup), and find a smaller scope. After many months
of research, I finally purchased an ETX-90EC. I can't even begin to tell
you how impressed I am with this scope. Sure, it may not be the most
mechanically-sound piece of equipment, but the views were VERY good. I
was amazed at the great views that almost matched the SCT. Incredible!

Tonight, I finally tried out the Autostar. I was skeptical about this
purchase, but to my surprise, it worked great! I did a very rough train
of the drives and even a worse alignment. I was shocked when I hit Go To
the first time and saw M57 show up near the center of the eyepiece. Go
To M13...same thing. Go To M92...same thing. The Dumbell Nebula...dead
center. I couldn't believe it. I saw more objects in 20 minutes than I
ever did without "cheating" with Go To. Laziness is a virtue to some.

This scope has brought back the excitement of the first time I ever
looked through a scope as a child. I am a kid again, with all the wonder
and amazement at the heavens above. I thank Meade for the great product,
and you for such a great site dedicated to the best little scope in the


Craig Morris
Brighton, TN ( street lights!!!)

Subject:	First impressions with ETX 90RA
Sent:	Monday, October 1, 2001 13:07:20
From: (martyn)
Hello everyone,

A couple of months ago I acquired one of these ETX-jewels, an ETX90RA. I
absolutely love it!

Added some eyepieces(SP15, SP9.7, SP6.4) and a hard case. The roofprism
finder is useless for astroviewing so I replaced it with the rightangle
finder which I mounted on the scope in an angle away from the eyepiece.
When the scope is packed in it's hardcase I remove it, else the edge of
the prism housing may damage(cosmetically) the side of one forkarm(or
perhaps undo a good alignment of the finder). Maybe one day I'll cut out
a piece of the foam to better fit a mounted rightangle finder and
perhaps place some foam in the case under the back of the OTA to
restrict declination-movement of the the axes should be
loosened when packed and carried. When I want to use the finder I mount
it with the one screw, jiggle it into proper alignment and I'm ready to
observe and enjoy...

Currently, I am observing from Europe. Haven't had many observing
chances, but here are a couple.

A 5 percent lit moon, just after new moon (22/7/2001), so moon was close
to the sun in the sky in daylight, craters on the limb of the moon were
VERY sharp and crisp with the SP26MM. M57,The ring nebula about 15
degrees above horizon (August 2001) with very good seeing: with SP26 the
hole was obvious with averted vision. M31, the Andromeda galaxy(August
2001/ 03:30h, transparancy very good) doesn't fit in the FOV of the
SP26mm but was very bright. M110 was an elongated bright patch easily
seen. I actually forgot to look for M32. NGC 7789 (August 2001/ 03:30h)
in Cassiopeia, with a celestron p12.5mm(100x) showed a sprinkling of
brighter stars with in the background a haze of barely (read:not quite)
resolved stardust.

Saturn looks great too. During early September while the planet was in
quadrature, the three dimensinal effect was georgious with an 8mm
eyepiece. Due to poor seeing no cassini division seen. Jupiter is
starting to rise after midnight now, so that planet will get a turn in
the etx soon...can hardly wait.

I am now looking forward to have a good look at M37 in Auriga, one of my

The etx 90RA is a great intrument for viewing the sun WITH A PROPER
FILTER. Sunspot detail is very very good.

I got this scope because I wanted an extra scope I can take anywhere
anytime, with quick & easy setup. Batteries are required only for
automatic RA tracking, which is very quiet. if the batteries are dead,
the scope can still track - manually. I am looking forward to a lot of
great observing with this scope.

The ETX90RA makes me one happy chappy.

Anyone wanting to share some specific observations with me??? please
feel free to do so, I would love to hear about it, thanks a lot!

Afrikaans: As daar iemand is wat sy/haar waarnemings met hierdie
teleskoop met my wil deel ?...ek stel baie belang, so ek hoop ek gaan
iets hoor! baie dankie!!!

Regards en groete


Subject:	ETX 90M initial impressions
Sent:	Saturday, December 1, 2001 18:01:27
From: (Gerald Mullen)
Well, tonight I got to test drive my new ETXM. As I said in a previous
E-Mail, I have the ETX mounted AlT/AZ style on a Celestron Great Polaris
wooden tripod, with an aluminum adaptor plate bolting it to the top of
the casting. Really solid.

I had to work fast after dusk, as the Moon is just beyond Full. I
started by doing some cruising in Cassiopiea. Alpha and beta looked
grand. The 9mm showed perfect diffraction patterns, with a clean Airy
disc and two small diffraction rings. I centered each star in the
eyepiece field with the aid of the right angle finder, then fucused
carefully. One thing with the ETX.. YOU KNOW WHEN YOU ARE IN FOCUS!!
Snap-in snap-out!!. My 2045LX3, an $800 SCT scope does not have this
sharp snap to the focus. Most SCT's I have seen are "Mushy" compared to
this little GEM.

Icruised Cassiopiea for a while looking at clusters, which as you know
are everywhere in this constellation. The field of the 25mm is narrow,
and the star images were sharp to the edges, I put my Meade 24.5 Super
Wide in and got a different look wider but same magnification. Tack
sharp images. Moving around in manual mode is easy just use the
finder..put the target in the cross-hairs..and bingo there it is in the
center of the field of the low-power eyepiece. Both eyepieces that came
with the scope are very good for starter optics, actually considering
what I got years ago with my 2045LX3 these are fantastic considering the
price. Keep in mind that the ETX M with 2 eyepieces was less than I paid
for my 2-inch 55mm Televue eyepiece!!

Anyway on with the test.. Saturn was in nice position in the East just
prior to moon-rise so it was next. The 25mm showed a small, but
exquisitely sharp saturn, where from time to time a hint of
ring-division would appear. Barlowing 2X for 100 power,with Meade
shorty-barlow showed a beautiful crisp ball and definite Cassini
division,soon to be washed out by the rising moonlight. I quickly put in
my 10mm Lanthanum, a really sharp optic, and the view was great. I
barlowed the 10mm to give 250X. The image had good scale and if it were
not for the bright sky I would have had some great viewing. I am now
waiting for no moon so I can get a good view of the ball and rings.

Since I am in Manual Mode, I do the following: Focus on a nearby star
centered in the eyepiece field, to get a good focus, then manually slew
to the planet and back off to the west..allowing the planet to sit just
outside the field of view and then sit back and watch it cross the
eyepiece field.No Jumps, No Bumps, no gear problems.

I do this with my motor driven LX3 and the big refractor. I find that
this method of allowing the object to drift across the field eliminates
periodic error, as no drive is in use, and it lets me concentrate on
looking for features. Also, note that I said I "sit back". In my youth I
remember hunching over an Edmund Newtonian for hours,,coming into the
house with a "permanent stoop". Long ago I bought an Astronomers Chair.
fully adjustable, solid oak. Best money I spent. If you want to enjoy
hours at the telescope even at zero F., you have to sit down. Also your
head is much steadier. You probably know all this but Some "newbie" may
read this and get a tip.

Up came the moon, washing out Saturn. I put on my Moon Filter and
focused carefully. The best detail was at the northern limb, with many
craters large and small with just enough shadow to provide good viewing
and detail. Again the ETX provided views with such sharpness as I have
only seen in a refractor. I think it has the edge over my 2045LX3, which
I carefully collimate and test at each session. Now I know why the
"Mighty ETX" name.For a 90mm optical tube to do such a beautiful job on
stars and also have the contrast to do well on Saturn in a moonlit sky
is amazing. I'm hooked!! ETX is a great scope.

The best buy there is!! To me the most impressive feature is the
optical tube itself!! a beautifully crafted scope with great definition.
This really has the often used term "Razor sharp Optics". ETX delivers.
One thing I may add is a Scopetronics  focus cable extension. I observe
all winter, and wear deerskin mittens with sheepskin liners. That focus
knob will be unusable with mittens, however that is not a criticism, as
I had no trouble this evening at the zenith using bare hands.This scope
could end up being my favorite!!

Jerry Mullen

Subject:	First Light with the ETX-90EC (At Last!)
Sent:	Friday, December 7, 2001 17:28:23
From: (Alan Daly)
I spent the whole evening with my fingers crossed, hoping for the
haze/cloud to dissipate as I've had my new (first!) scope for a couple
of weeks now and no opportunity to take it outside, even more
frustrating as I've spent the last week scopeless in Scotland under
crisp clear starry skies, even the ETX-90 wasn't portable enough to take
by train once the family & luggage were taken into consideration, next
time I'll drive - it may be a long painful drive (kids in car) but it'll
be worth it to have it under skies so dark & crisp.

It broke in places now and again and I persisted until both Jupiter and
Saturn were above Leicester's orange skyglow, and it paid off, Using the
26mm with a 2 x Barlow Jupiter started off as a pale character less
disk, but slowly as my eyes adapted & the scope cooled down I got to see
the NEB & SEB quite clearly, as I persisted longer I was able to discern
striations & patterns within the belts and then it struck me that I
could see a feature in the SEB that just had to be the Great Pale Spot,
longer & thinner than I'd expected to see, I also noticed that the NEB
was considerably darker than the SEB, as seemed the polar regions.
Later, once inside & warm I used the Java 'Planets' application & was
able to confirm my GRS spotting, that felt good.

I really didn't expect my eyes to slowly reveal more & more detail the
longer I viewed, a great reward for persistence it has to be said. My
polar alignment can't have been too bad either, as the scope tracked
Jupiter for a good 15-20 minutes.

As the clouds started to roll over I quickly moved the scope to the rear
yard for a southward view, the was no view to the north so an alignment
was out of the question, so I left the scope electronics off and quickly
manually slewed to and lined up on the Orion Nebula, my first Faint
Fuzzy, not ideal conditions but seeing the nebula & the Trapezium stars
made the quick last minute effort worthwhile.

A great night, even better once I convince my 'better half' to come and
take a peek, however the winter cold seems to have revitalized her
interest in anything that involves being inside.


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Copyright ©2001 Michael L. Weasner /
Submittals Copyright © 2001 by the Submitter