Meade LX-50 7"


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Meade LX-50 7"
Superb optics!
I had a problem with the mount (electrical).
The mount is very stable!

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.20.243)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41029


Meade LX-50 7"
...we bought the Meade 7" Mak as an experiment after reading Tod Gross's positive review and several Meade Mak owners also saying optical perform-
ance was superb; this included Quail Creek Obeservatory well known for its fine
lunar photography (saying the Meade Mak was hands down the BEST lunar scope
available for the money. Thats a bit of a stretch but not by much. The whole
issue here began by Tod Gross really was whether the Meade Mak did produce
refractor like imaging (in a hi contrast maksutov)... and it does... on
ocassion, but there are definate problems. In fact the Meade 7" Mak turned out
to be one of the most frustrating scopes we ever owned, like a petulent child -
a real prodigy, but cantancerous and often not a good performer at all requiring
lots of special attentionand patience to the point - we finally sold the scope
to get back to something far less 'kvetchy'! (So we could sleep at night!) The
Meade Mak comes in two versions: the standard heavy weight with a weight behind
the primary (the scope is heavyand will NOT mount to an SP mount - be warned).
And the far more manageable 'spotter' version which has no counterweight. The
whole problem with the heavy counterweighted version is it casues the scope to
take forver to cool dowen and stabilise - up to two hours and sometimes three!
This can be a real headache. Yes there is a ventilation fan but it has a LOT to
overcome. Most nights frankly we waited ande waited and waited, and saw nothing!
I know this sounds like an impossibility, but it wasnt. For us this scope turned
out to be as pesky and unpredictable as Iowa weather except for one thing ...
cooled or uncooled the Meade Mak was a "killer" on the Moon on all ocassions
and without a doubt (not thee best) but one of the best lunar scopes we ever
owned. The scope is an f/15 maksutov. I have never heard of trully bad optics
in anyof these Meade maks and our optics proved to be superb. Dick Buchroeder
designer of the Meade mak optical system called and asked to borrow our scope
for evaluation - it proved to be very good optically. For lunar work this scope
did easily provide refractor-like images on every ocassion we used it, cooled
or uncooled. However, in the three years + we owned the scope we never saw a
clear resolved version of Jupiter once except on one night. One July night I
hauled the scope out to try it again, I collimated things (always great ring
patterns) again just to be sure, I pointed at Jupiter and after about an hour of
screwing around, suddenly, the scope began to perform. I have no idea how or why. Suddenly, Jupiter resolved into 5-7 bands, infinite detail was visible, a
transit began and we literally watched Gan. float over Jup's cloud deck like a
tiny rsolved gray ball with clearcut dimension! It was incredible! I slewed over
to Satrurn and it was literally like using one of Roland's 6" apo's - incredible
detail and crisp 'refractor like' imaging - almost research grade! (The next night and for therest of the summer Jupiter was a smudge - not detail possible -
whikle Saturn was 'pretty good with some detail'. I chalked this up to cooling!
For stellar work the scope was basically useless, very dim, very narrow field,
very dark, pinpoint stellar images, but always "very dark". Through all of this
we communicated constantly with people trying toget these problems resolved but
never could. We finally sold the scope to a man with better air over his head and he reported he loved the scope, it was performing exceedingly well, and he
was also using the scope for the "best terrestrial photo scope I ever owned"!
In the meantime I can report every single Meade Mak owner I know has sold his
scope and gone back to a refractor. To be fair Iwill say the folks I knew with
the spotter versions (no lead counterweight behind primary!) reported far fewer
of the problems we experienced. The central issue with these scopes is cooldown.
Thermal stability. I would honestly have to say that for us the Meade Mak proved
to be "The Little Engine That Could - Bit Couldn't and Rarely Did" - except on
the Moon and for Lunar work. Pick an ota up cheap and you may well have the best
luanr scope you ever owned, inch for inch, and the rest is a gamble imho.
jw

Overall Rating: 5
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.70.97)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41030


Meade LX-50 7"
Purchaced the 7" LX 50 after reading most of the reviews on the web.
optics are great, and the views are MUCH better than my 102 vixen flourite, IF
the weather is perfect and it doesn't cool down much during the night.
The mount is stable enough but it needs a heavier wedge.
Thermal stability is the only problem (complaint) that I have with the entire system.

Overall Rating: 8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.134.139)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41031


Meade LX-50 7"
The Meade LX-50 Maksutov is the best scope I ever used in over 20 years.

The optics are great ie, high contrast, no secondary spectrum, and in my opinion perform better than a 6" Apo Refractor!!!

Note: To get excellent optical performance you must run the cooling fan for about an hour befor using. Also the fan filters must be cleaned on a regular basis.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.102.143)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41032


Meade LX-50 7"
Excellent views of Jupiter, lots of detail

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Mount:9 Ease of Use:9 Value:8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.67.65)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=66715


Meade LX-50 7"
I purchased this scope second hand two years ago. It is quite difficult for me to compare the views through it to other telescopes as the only other scope I have spent much time looking through was 6 inch reflector.

Compared to the reflector the Mak was in a totally different league altogether on everything except low power wide field views which it struggles to achieve even with a 35mm Panoptic eyepiece.

The views on the moon and planets are wonderful with Jupiter showing lots of sharp detail - maybe twice as much as the 6 inch!

The scope does however need a good hour and a half to cool down for planetary viewing although deep sky views are quite good almost straight away.

One down side is the weight, I can only just manage to carry it fully assembled -its a real struggle.

I don’t agree with an earlier message that the scope is very inconsistent with the views it produces, although I am still relatively inexperienced I know for certain that the views are normally very good so long as the scope is cool and the atmosphere is relatively stable.

I would say the optics are first class and the rest of the package is good.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Mount:9 Ease of Use:9 Value:8
Weight: 4 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.67.65)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=66768


Meade LX-50 7"
I owned one of these scopes 5 years ago and I don't miss it.You could say I got a bad one! You could not even make out cassini division on saturn. Very heavy long cool down time. Meade QC very poor. For what this 80 pound piece of junk cost you can buy a great televue refractor and save your back.

Overall Rating: 4
Optics:5 Mount:6 Ease of Use:3 Value:1
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.197.63)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=68238


Meade LX-50 7"
Very heavy, long cool down time but excellent contrast and detail on Planets and moon. Deep sky is ok but always limited by narrow field of view. If you like looking at Jupiter and Saturn give this telescope (now only available as LX200) serious consideration.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.128.245)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=74477


Meade LX-50 7"
I bought this scope after quite a lot of thought and reading reviews here and elsewhere. I always wanted a Questar & but that will always remain way beyond what I will spend. So when I had a chance to buy a Meade 7 inch LX50 new in October 2001, I grabbed it especially since it was $1300 everything included. There were some missing accessories but the dealer got them to me so no problem. The drive motor though malfunctioned on day one so it was sent back to Meade. Quite an adventure with customer service, but I knew this going into it so I was prepared. I have had much, much worse customer service with rotten folks at Celestron.

The optics were nearly equalled my Meade 10 inch SCT almost. This is certainly better than any Meade or Celestron 8 inch scope I have ever seen.

The forks are really over kill. Heavy, the scope is much heavier than an 8 inch SCT. Where the old LX3-LX6 forks were too light, these are too heavy. The dec motor has trouble, I have the dec fix but haven't put it on yet.

Cool down time takes a while, I put this scope outside three hours before I go out, out of the sun and it is usually fine.

A huge amount of image shift occurs when focusing. More than I have ever seen in any SCT. I don't understand this beacause older LX3s I have seen have very little, this has lots. When I sent it back for the drive faliure, they told me there was nothing they could do about the image shift. I will eventually have to get a zero image shift focuser.

This scope is providing the best lunar images I have ever seen. For planets my 10 SCT is better. Deep sky I put on the 6.3 focal reducer, no problem.

I am enjoying the Mak and will keep it, though the ten inch SCT is probably all I need.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:8 Ease of Use:7 Value:8
Weight: 4 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.74.19)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=80014


Meade LX-50 7"
This could just be the closest you can get to an Apo Refractor without spending big big bucks. I have owned both this scope and a 6-inch apocromatic refractor so I have a clear perspective on this.

On the Moon and planets this scope beats everything else I have ever looked through apart from my refractor. Against the refractor I am afraid it looses the fight on contrast and image sharpness, however when you consider that the apo costs 2 - 3 times as much it is absolutely remarkable how well the Meade Maksutov does.

Its two biggest restrictions are 90+ minutes cool down time and small field of view for deep sky, however if you are prepared to put up with these issues you will really love the images you get of the planets and moon.

I don’t see why you need LX200 style go-to pointing on a scope intended mainly for viewing the planets - so why not try and bag a second hand LX50 for a bargain price.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:10 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.109.160)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=179961


Meade LX-50 7"
I aquired my used 7" Mak after "much research", and after having owned various other scope configurations over the past several yrs. I just had to see how the big Mak performed. The LX-50 series dosent have auto go-to but thats fine for me, it does however have CCD tracking ability for photography lateron especially if you put a small guiding refractor piggy backed on it so you can also do CCD prime focus etc..I may explore that someday. The fork mount is first class SUPER H/D for stability and photography obviously. I realized that the first time I lifted it onto the wedge, phew! The control keypad has 4 tracking speeds but no fast slewing speeds so the OTA must be moved close to the vicinity of whatever your observing then you can use the 32X speed to center the object in the finder. I didnt like the tiny finder scope, no wait....I hated it.... and immediatly replaced it with a TAL 8X50 finder, a small refractor itself really. Even tho I keep it in a cool, unheated space, I still have to run the built in fans a bit, they dont seem to introduce much vibration even at moderatly high mag I was surprised about that and am no longer concerned. This model scope is a real deal for the amature astronomer that A: Dosent have to carry it all over the place, and B: dosent care about auto go-to but still wants to do photography. Ive conceided to the reality that this will have to stay my at home on a permanent basis, its just too heavy to lug to dark skys and hefting the OTA onto a wedge in the dark is to say the least, "frightning".. should it be dropped. I have mine on a wheeley dolly all setup and just roll it outside and view, only way to go other than a permanent observatory in my opinion. I added a feathertouch focuser to it as the primary has mirror flop and the feathertouch uses a built in brake that holds heavy objects in focus like large Naglers and cameras etc. A manual crawford style focuser would suffice as well tho, and a lot cheaper! The tracking seems about right on but can be adjusted by .5% increments via the keypad software if you want it to track in a different speed ie: lunar, solar, planetary, etc.....the sidereal rate is fine for my casual observing tho. My real gripe is that the OTA dosent have a handle to move the scope around when going from object to object, Im surprised that such a large OTA in a fork mount without go-to wouldnt have a handle? Im going to add one to the rear soon, there are several websites explaining a simple how-to on handles so its an easy fix. Other than no handle, primary flop, and way too small a finderscope I dont really see any other probs. The views of the moon and Saturn have been well....awsome. Beats the pants off of my C8 for lunar and planetary, Its not much good for DSOs in stock form(my C8 does better), but I suspect a f/6.3 focal reducer would make it a super DSO scope then, and close to f10. If you have a permanent place for this scope its a real bargain, If your looking for a travel scope look elsewhere unless you like weightlifting as a hobby. I had considered removing the OTA and placing it on a EQ but then I would loose the fan output jack and the CCD tracking jack as well so Ive decided to forget that idea. I dont want to spend $1500-$2000 more just to get a mount that could add these options to make it a travel scope, the ol C8 will fit that nitch nicely and is a lot lighter anyway. I will say I like this scope better than any ive owned as yet to date, even with the few mods I feel are a must do.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:9 Mount:10 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.85.254)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=307800


Meade LX-50 7"
Great telescope on the planets - have compared to Intes of same size and both were equal on Saturn but the Intes was much more expensive.

Compared to 152 Apo. Refractor is better but not by as much as you would think.

Allow to cool for at least 1 hour, don`t let anyone tell you different the optics on this scope are very good and for the money as good as it gets.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:10 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.109.150)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=336478

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