Last updated: 26 August 2003
Subject: Awesome initial ETX-90 experience! Sent: Monday, August 25, 2003 07:15:39 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Keith Woods) I would first like to thank you Mike for this website, it helped me to make a decision on my new purchase as well as learn as much as I can about it before hand. So I thought I'd write to make my contribution to the website as my thank you. I took my new ETX-90 without UHTC out for the first time last night and was overwhelmingly happy with my first experience. I am though by no means a pro, however I had a couple telescopes in the past and my interest in astronomy comes and goes with the wind so that's one reason I choose a portable inexpensive telescope with great optics and a GoTo. My last scope was an 8" LX-10 which was really nice but it didn't get used that often because it was so huge so I sold it on eBay. Also I don't live in the darkest area, only about 15 miles away from downtown Detroit in the suburbs and smaller scopes aren't affected as much by unfavorable seeing conditions as larger aperture scopes. I was getting a little worried reading about some of the problems that people have with the Autostar. After a few minutes of messing with it I found it to be rather easy to figure out. So I trained the drive which was easy and did the 2 star alignment (easy align mode) which was also easy despite the site I was at. I didn't do it perfect because I was in my back yard and much of the sky is blocked by houses and trees. Autostar picked Arcturus as the first star, but unfortunately my house was in the way to where it pointed. So I took a few steps back to see what star it could be pointing at and saw a pretty bright star so I figured that was it. Then I remembered from my astronomy class the constellation Bootes which I saw and Arcturus was right there in it so I was pretty darn happy. So I picked up my telescope and moved it to a place where I could center Arcturus in the FOV. Then the next star it picked was Altair and only missed it by a smidge. It was in the view finder but I really couldn't line it up because of a giant tree branch in the way. So I decided that getting it perfect tonight was not gonna happen so I just picked it up and moved it to where Altair would be in the FOV view. I knew this would throw off everything I just wanted to see if the GoTo would be close to any object I choose or if it was off by 180 degrees or something, so I finished my hack job alignment. I choose an easy target, Mars as the first object. Needless to say it was off but not by that much considering my sloppy alignment. So I was very happy and I am confident when I get to a better viewing area that Autostar will work great. I haven't bought any extra eyepieces or even a barlow lens yet, but after seeing Mars through just the supplied 26mm SP I was can't wait to get a barlow lens, which I will be getting in the next day or so. I was however very impressed from what I saw of Mars using just the 26mm eyepiece. It is definitely a disc, not a point of light. Mars was low on the horizon when I started viewing it so seeing wasn't the greatest. I studied it for about 20 minutes and I tell you I definitely saw some contrast on the surface, it may have been faint but it wasn't just a flat color so I can't wait to get my barlow lens for Wednesday Aug 27. Also that little view finder, it isn't so bad and my motor wasn't as loud as people claim it to be. Maybe I just got a good one. Well anyway I am very happy with my ETX-90 and it will be getting a lot of use. Thanks, Keith
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