Meade ETX-90EC


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Brand and Model:Meade ETX-90EC
Price ($USD):$595.00
Type:Maksutov-Cassegrain
Attributes: checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:90mm (3.5")
f Ratio:f/13.8
Focal Length:1250mm
Finder:8x25
Electric Power:12V
Mount:Alt-Az
Tripod:tabletop
Weight (lbs):9.2 lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):15x7.3x8.5"
Description:Specifications: ETX-90EC Astro Telescope — Includes Maksutov-Cassegrain optical tube assembly (D = 90mm (3.5"), F = 1250mm, f/13.8) with MgF2 coatings on the correcting lens and standard aluminum coatings on the primary and secondary mirrors (Ultra-High Transmission Coatings, available optionally[for an extra $50]); internal flip-mirror system for either straight-through or 90° observing position; steel-reinforced ABS fork mount with electric slow-motion controls, setting circles and locks on both axes; electronic control panel; 4-speed (8x, 32x, 0.75°/sec, 5°/sec) dual-axis motor drive system with Electronic Controller; sidereal-rate tracking in equatorial mode with optional table tripod or deluxe field tripod; internal battery compartment accepting eight (user-supplied) AA-size batteries; 8x21mm erect-image viewfinder; Series 4000 Super Plössl 26mm eyepiece (1.25"); operating instructions.

Meade ETX Astro Series Telescope Page
Weasner's Meade ETX-90EC Comments
Reviews @ Epinioins.com

Vote Highlights Vote
Meade ETX-90EC
This machine is a study in contrasts. The 3.5 inch Mak OTA is awesome, the views razor sharp. Star tests are excellent, splitting Eps Lyrae is child's play. M13 is granular with edge stars easily resolved. Pumping up the power to 200x is easy, and M13 really resolves well - very similar to my old C8 (but just a lot dimmer). Deep sky is possible with this little monster - M81/82 are easily viewable with details! Ring nebulae shows very well. The problem with mine was everything else with the scope. The electronics were wonky, 60% of the time, the scope would not complete it's 2 star alignment. Goto was hit and miss. In polar mode, using the scope manually, it was okay. But honestly, the best time I had with it was when I pulled the OTA out of the forks, and mounted to a camera tripod. The wife and I tracked down 15 Messier objects that night and had a hoot! Mine was one of the first EC models. Hopefully the bugs are fixed, but for my money, I'll stick with an Orion StarMax. VERDICT - Recommended with reservations.

Overall Rating: 7
Optics:9 Mount:5 Ease of Use:5 Value:6
Weight: 15 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: BBQedIguana
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=142060


Meade ETX-90EC
the etx90ec was my first telescope. i am very impressed with it. aside from the instructions that meade supplys with the scope, leaving somewhat to be desired, i am completely satisfied with it.
i now also own a 10" lx 200 and the etx will slew anywhere the lx200 will, i may not be able to see the object but it is there in the same location . i have since upgraded the autostar twice and it is almost like getting a new telescope.
i gave the optics a 9 because i'm not sure what a 10 is. it has textbook images of stars (much better than the lx200)its only drawback being its 3.5" aperture.
i gave the mount a 7 because it shakes at high power. i have since modified it a little , and it has improved that somewhat.
i gave ease of use 6 mainly because of the instructions given by meade. for a beginner such as myself there were things mentioned in the instructions which make sense to me now , but none when i first started. after a while it got easier .
because of the etx & autostar i have seen 100's of objects that i couldn't imagine ever seeing without the computer control. i take my hat off to those who have seen these objects without that help . its a little expensive but worth it . its cheaper now than it was when i bought it.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:7 Ease of Use:6 Value:6
Weight: 12 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: jgsstars
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=95950


Meade ETX-90EC
Best optics of ANY compound scope I have owned. Pinpoint stars, perfect star test, diffraction rings around all medium to bright stars. Incredible detail on planets and the moon for a 3.5" scope. Drive works perfectly. Compact and portable. COST????? They are liquidating the RAs now for $179 (Apogee). After selling off the junk MA eyepieces, my net cost is $139! Is that the telescope buy of the century or what?

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: groth
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=84276


Meade ETX-90EC
A little velcro on the controllers and tripod makes it easy to store the controller.
The electric focus motor is nice if u can afford to splurge for it.

Overall Rating: 6
Optics:7 Mount:6 Ease of Use:5 Value:7
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: jhenry
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=56336


Meade ETX-90EC
Despite the bad press, I asked for an ETX-90 RA from Santa, and I must have been good, because I also recieved the BIG #884 (not 883) tripod, which is the ONLY tripod for an ETX. My modified XT-8 is a tough travel companion, so i was pleasantly surprised at the one-hand portability the ETX with tripod affords! Yes, the controls are small, and the finder has 0+/-1 eye relief (I added a red-dot, and use the standard finder for fine-tuning), and a long f/ratio. On the plus side, the optics make a hero out of the most mundane eyepiece, and the motor drive has been flawless! I saw 2 large, and 4 small bands on jupiter, and banding on saturn, with the cassini all the way around, from my well-lighted front yard! The Orion Nebula showed a "seagull" shape, and the double cluster was littered with small and large pinpoints. 160-200x on the planets exhibits no image breakdown, just dimming. The ETX is in another league on the moon, with surface features and detail that my XT-8 just can't see. I ran the XT-8's standard 9mm plossl with an old barlow (277x) on the moon, and found no image breakdown! My 32mm plossl has excellent edge-of-field sharpness, which is not possible with my big reflector. Don't get me wrong, I love my XT-8, It'll show the eyes on the owl nebula on a good night, and I have lost count of the Galaxies I have seen with it, but for quick, sharp views of bright objects from my backyard, it's hard to beat the ETX. You may think of this comparison as groundless, considering the black and white differences between the ETX 90 RA and the XT-8, but consider this: The ETX, 884 tripod, Meade dew shield, and Celestron red-dot pointer costs the same (retail) as the XT-8!
P.S. I have looked through a TV ranger, Ill keep the ETX!

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: Irvinext8
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=51351


Meade ETX-90EC
Sadly, I must give this 'scope a low rating. I bought it as a close out. I anticipated getting a 'poor man's Questar'. What I got was an instrument that I really cannot recommend for serious astronomical observing without spending additional $$$$.

The optics are good - on a par with my 120mm refractor. The mount has a very cheap feel to it, and the plastic knobs just don't cut it - someone once referred to the knobs as 'fiddly', and that is a very accurate observation. They are small, and in the case of the focuser, tends to fall off.

The biggest problem is the finder. It is impossible to use it, and the solution is to spend $49 for a right angle finder (that's why you see so many 'new' small Meade finders for sale on eBay). You can't even use it to align on Polaris, which compromises the accuracy of the clock drive.

Also, you really need a tripod for this scope because Murphy's Law says the table you place it on will inevitably have one leg shorter than the other and will wobble!

So when you add the cost of the finder and tripod, you're back up to around $400. A 90mm or 100mm equatorial refractor on a tripod would be a better investment at that price.

Since I have other 'scopes more suited for astronomical work, I find this little beast good for terrestial viewing.

Overall Rating: 6
Optics:9 Mount:5 Ease of Use:3 Value:5
Weight: 9 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.30.229)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=104044


Meade ETX-90EC
Aside from my $1100 Borg 76ED refractor, which may outperform a TV76 or at least equal it, this little scope is my "baby" for all applications. Its higher contrast makes it do way better on planets than my 5" Celestron. It is so light I can practically tuck it into a coat pocket ( a really big pocket :-) ).

Optics blow me away every single time. The RA model costs $180 and when you sell off the cheapo eyepieces it becomes less than a $150 scope. Where can you get $800+ optical quality for that price? This scope is extremely easy to use with a Telrad or Rigel finder, and extremely HARD to use without one. The built in finder is junk, toss it into the garbage. The focuser should be replaced with an aftermarket vibration-free cable like ScopeTronix sells.

I bought a tacklebox from Home Depot for $5.99, put some foam in it, and I carry the ETX tube assembly that way everywhere -- it's the star at star parties, outings, camping, etc. Nature photography and visual usage are superb. The only complaint I have is the limited aperature and long focal length, but everything else rocks. What can I say? The all-time best telescope ever made, for the money.

I don't have the electric mount, so I would not know. The plastic RA mount is kind of junky, I replaced it with a $150 Bogen fluid head tripod and it's the sweetest combo out there.

I wish I had two to make binoculars!

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 9 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.10.71)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=100473


Meade ETX-90EC
I picked up an ext90ra from Apogee a few weeks ago at the close out price of $179. I heard allog of good and bad press from the ext90's but I figured since trying 2 Orion apex china made scopes and having to return both that maybe meade's qc might be better. Well I cn tell you that the first night out and then latter that week I performed a fake star test and was I surprised with the optics. It seems to work as well as an 80mm achro as g=far as deep sky but the pinpoint star images are just like a friends Pronto and TV 85, has no false solor at all and seems to split doubles well. Have not had it out on the planest yet cause Jupiter is too low and waiting on the moon to come around but the way the scope star tests is not far from my MN56 so I don't think I'll have a problem. Its very portable and travels well which is why I bought it but was not ecpecting the optical performance this scope has. This would make an excellent first scope for starters but even for a good secod scope to take on vacations were you dont have to worry about the scope if it gets knocked around a little. Hey its not a Pronto but for $179 this is soo much better than some of these semi high price 80mm refractors that are being sold just under $500 that just don't have the color correction and optics that this does. My hats off to meade and I have found many owners that have been just as happy, buyit know before they are all gone, highly recomended.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:9 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 9 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.193.92)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=90839


Meade ETX-90EC
I have owned this scope for a couple of months now - it has taken this long to fully master the Autostar but it has been worth persevering. I should add that I am not a total novice and have owned several scopes in recent years.

The optics are as sharp as a good 4.5" reflector and seem just as bright. There is no colour fringing (as there is with similar priced refractors) and star tests are perfect. Cassini's division is easily visible. There is more detail on Jupiter than with my 4.4" refector. Splits Polaris.

I have the deluxe field tripod which is very sturdy, but was a little expensive even at 159 (RRP is 180!). I like the bubble level built in.

People complain about the finder scope being awkward to use, but since this is only used to help centre two alignment stars (if you have the Autostar) this is not a major issue. It is well made and gives an erect image, but Meade could have thrown in some lens caps to keep the dust off!

I have had teething problems with the Autostar (version 2.0). Originally it found deep space objects very well (after lots of scrolling to find the object in the list!) but was less accurate on planets (usually in finder scope but not 26mm eyepiece)and even less accurate on the moon. I have greatly increased its accuracy though by training the motors using Polaris and a very high power eyepiece (6.3mm plus 2x barlow). If you use a telegraph pole as instructed you get the well known rubber-banding effect (when you centre an object the scope moves away again) when you try to locate objects high in the sky. Also,it would have been nice if Meade had included somewhere to hang the handset when not in use. It does not eat batteries like my Tasco (Celestron) Starguide 80GT though, maybe because the display is not back-lit? I am still on my first set actually. The motors are louder than my Celestron, I worry that this could annoy the neighbours on a still summer night with windows open.

With practice, the Autostar is now 100% accurate. Although it shouldn't be important, I have found that using a spirit level to the level the tube at set-up greatly helps.

This scope is a quality piece of kit for the price, but it is sold for beginers, which I would not recommend it for. The novice may have trouble mastering the Autostar and become frustrated - compounded further when he/she can't see that black-hole/quasar the scope is meant to be pointing at.

But if you have some experience and are looking for quality optics in a compact scope with accurate GOTO, then this scope comes highly recommended. It has helped me find objects I had never seen before. You can also see more in one night because it is so fast.

Finally, I am amazed by the number of accessories available and the amount of information on the web (which helped me solve the rubber-banding problem).

Gave it 8 out of ten. Lens caps and somewhere to hang the Autostar would have meant 9. If the price had included the Autostar (like Celestron N4) it would have got 10.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:9 Mount:9 Ease of Use:8 Value:7
Weight: 9 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.50.162)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=55561


Meade ETX-90EC
I think Meade has done a great job for making a telescope that not only has excellent optics but also portability and style at an affordable price range.
I am glad I have purchased this marvelous telescope for I can take it anywhere with ease and it is so easy to setup. However, I had to get the optional 884 mount which costs additional $200. But it was worth it. And a couple of additional eye pieces are also necessary. You should get the Super Plossl 9.7mm and 2X barlow lenses to get the maximum value out of this one. However, it applies to all the other telescopes anyway! You have to get additional eye pieces, etc, etc...

I think this telescope is an excellent choice if you intend to use it as a portable take-anywhere telescope with excellent optics and cool gadgets.
With ETX90-EC, you can't go wrong!
I'd recomment it to anyone!

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:10 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 7 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.73.29)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=69833

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