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I Faced The Same Choice

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Posted by Glenn Mitchell on May 8, 2002 04:16:13 UTC

I faced this same choice a few weeks ago.

I have a Celestron scope already. Been very happy with it. It's a C5+ with optical encoders and Sky Wizard II computer.

I bought the 10" LX200 GPS with UHTC coatings. A few things helped me decide.

(1) The motorized microfocuser. It's a helpful accessory, especially if you want to do astrophotography. You can more easily focus the scope and get sharper focus with it.

(2) The mirror lock. Again, if you do astrophotography, this is a helpful accessory. A 10" mirror is heavy, and it can shift as the scope moves.

(3) The tripod. From what I've read from others, the Celestron tripod is vibration prone.

(4) The SuperWedge. It's an option. But it makes azimuth and altitude adjustments soooo easy. And it includes a compass with magnetic declination for pointing to true north.

(5) The forks and gears. The forks on the 10" LX200 are oversized and very, very sturdy. The gears are 5.75" worm gears on both axes.

(6) The GPS and autoleveling. The LX200 levels to the ground, not the tripod. It points to true north, not magnetic north.

(7) Manual dials. I don't plan using the scope manually, but I am glad that manual dials are there. Especially if the battery power runs down unexpectedly.

(8) Guiding. If you use the scope in Alt-Az, you get PEC for both Dec and RA.

(9) GoTo Accuracy. If you use the High Accuracy mode, you get 1 arc-min. accuracy.

You will pay more for the Meade scope. The UHTC coatings add about $230. You'll have about $130 for shipping.

I figured the features above were worth $300-400 to me.


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