LX200-ACF 14" Advanced Coma-Free Go-To Altazimuth With Giant Field Tripod

$6,999.00

Availability: In stock

If you can't take pictures through one of the 300" Keck telescopes in Hawaii, this big Meade 14" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free optics may be the next best thing for serious amateur astronomers, schools, and colleges. 
Our Product #: 14210RU
Meade Product #: 1410-60-03
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Product Description

The Meade 14" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics provides the serious amateur astronomer and school or college observatory with state-of-the-art, high-transmission, coma-free photo/visual optics in a large-aperture telescope at a very attractive price. If you can't afford the optical performance of a 14" true Ritchey-Chrétien, and few of us can, the Meade 14" LX200-ACF provides remarkably similar coma-free performance at a mere fraction the price.

If you have the dark skies to take full advantage of its immense light gathering capacity (three times that of an 8" scope), or are willing to make the effort to transport this heavy 166 lb. scope to the dark sky site it needs for best performance, this is a scope that can keep you happily observing and photographing the heavens for the rest of your life.

This Telescope's Optical System . . .

Advanced Coma-Free catadioptric designed to emulate the optical performance of a Ritchey-Chrétien telescope: 14" aperture catadioptric (3556mm focal length f/10). Fully multicoated UHTC (Ultra High Transmission Coatings) optics with oversized Pyrex Grade A primary mirror for brighter field edge illumination. Aluminum tube construction with glare-stop baffling and mirror lock. Guaranteed diffraction-limited performance. For more details, click on the "LX200-ACF UHTC optics" icon in the support tab above.

Finderscope: 8 x 50mm straight-through achromatic design, with a 5° field of view and 14mm eye relief.

Star diagonal: 1.25" prism-type.

Eyepiece: 1.25" 26mm Series 4000 Super Plössl (137x). The eyepiece field of view is 0.37°, three-quarters the diameter of the full Moon, for detailed lunar, planetary, and deep space views.

This Telescope's Mount . . .

Fork mount/drive system: Drive base and dual fork arms of die-cast aluminum. For added strength and stability the fork's polar cross-bar assembly is cast in one continuous piece from one fork arm to the other. In addition, the motor drive base includes a thickened cast floor to minimize flexure of the telescope when mounted on the optional #2575 X-wedge at low latitudes.

The mount includes servo-controlled 12VDC slewing and tracking motors in both altitude and azimuth. The motors are powered for up to 20 hours (depending on ambient temperature) by eight user-supplied C-cell batteries that fit into the fork arms. Optional adapters (with 25' cords) are available to power the scope from 110-140 volt 60 Hz AC household current in your back yard to conserve battery life, or to power the telescope from your car's cigarette lighter plug or a rechargeable battery for extended use in the field. For more details, click on the "LX200 mount and LX200 computer" icons in the support tab above.

GPS/Autostar computer: A 16-channel Sony GPS (global positioning satellite) receiver is built into the top of the telescope's left fork arm. The GPS receiver, in conjunction with a built-in electronic compass and Autostar computer control, automatically aligns the scope on the sky so that the Autostar computer can locate for you the more than 145,000 stars and objects in its memory.

In addition to quickly and automatically moving the scope to any desired object (with an accuracy typically in the two arc minute range) and flawlessly tracking the object while you observe at your leisure, the Autostar computer provides numerous visual, tracking, and photographic tools and functions to make your observing easier and more enjoyable.

Unique "Smart Mount" technology can constantly improve the already high pointing accuracy of the telescope with every object that you center precisely and synchronize on during a night's observing. For more details on these features, click on the "computer" icon above.

Adjustable height tripod: Due to the size of the 14" scope, a special shortened version of the giant field tripod is supplied to keep the eyepiece at a convenient observing height. The 50 lb. tripod adjusts from a height of 32" to 42". Even with the tripod legs fully retracted at a tripod height of 32", the eyepiece is located between 48" and 56" above ground level, depending on whether the scope is pointed at the zenith or the horizon.

The tripod has 3" diameter steel legs, with a center leg brace for rigidity, and damps vibrations very quickly. Six 1.25" diameter holes in the leg brace can hold eyepieces while observing. A single threaded rod with a large hand-tighten knob simultaneously holds the scope firmly on the tripod and locks the legs rigidly in the most stable position.

AutoStar Software Suite: This standard equipment software package is designed to integrate the telescope with your Windows-based PC or laptop computer for an enhanced range of performance features. The AutoStar Software Suite includes a planetarium program with a database of 19,000,000 stars and deep space objects for display on your computer screen. It includes all the standard planetarium program features for stand-alone use when nights are cloudy. In addition, it contains programs for controlling the telescope from your laptop or PC. For more details on the many capabilities and features of the AutoStar Software Suite, click on the "AutoStar software" icon in the support tab above.

What can you see through a 14" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics?

With a resolving power of 0.33 arc seconds, a field that's flat and pinpoint-sharp from edge to edge, and with 15% higher light transmission than conventionally-coated optics, this 14" Meade is an advanced instrument capable of serious research and astrophotography for amateur and university alike. With more than three times the light gathering capacity of an 8" scope (almost twice that of a 10" scope), this telescope's fully-coated 14" optics let you explore the Universe to a greater depth at dark sky sites that no smaller scope can approach - no matter how good that smaller scope might be. Visual observing is an extraordinarily rewarding experience.

The advantages of the scope's large diffraction-limited aperture and flat field are immediately apparent, particularly to the experienced observer with an eye trained to see extremely fine detail. The more obscure Messier and NGC objects (such as planetary nebula NGC 3242 in Hydra, spiral galaxy M100 in Coma Berenices, and open cluster NGC 6231 in Scorpius) show a heightened level of resolution invisible in smaller scopes. Difficult objects like the Crab Nebula (M1) in Taurus, the face-on Spiral Galaxy (M33) in Triangulum, and the Owl Nebula (M97) in Ursa Major begin to show their essential structures under high-power visual observation.

The stars in open clusters remain crisp and point-like to the edge of the field, thanks to the coma-free performance of the Advanced Coma-Free optics that is similar to that of professional Ritchey-Chrétien optics, but at a fraction the price.

These same objects yield magnificently detailed long-exposure CCD and 35mm images thanks to the higher light transmission of the UHTC multicoatings. However, field rotation will cause stars at the corners of an image to streak during exposures longer than five minutes. So, if you plan on doing deep space photography, you'll need to add an optional #2575 X-wedge.

This scope needs truly dark and steady skies if you want to take full advantage of its large aperture, high transmission, and superb optical performance. It's not a scope that's happy in a light-polluted suburban observing environment. Because of its size and weight, it's also not a scope you can take out to a dark sky site on the spur of the moment, particularly if you're the Lone Observer. This scope needs either a permanent observatory building or a crew of at least two to travel.

The scope is very substantial in both size and weight. While it is transportable, it is not truly portable. The optical tube and fork arm assembly weighs 115 lbs. Two people are needed to lift the scope safely onto its 50 lb. tripod. In addition, once on the tripod, a blind hole in the base of the scope has to be aligned with a blind hole and threaded rod in the top of the tripod to lock the scope in place. A third person to thread the rod into the scope base while the two lifters position the scope to line up the holes would make the job easier and less adventurous in the dark.

But, if you have dark skies and help getting to them, or the thought of a permanent observatory doesn't faze you, the 14" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics may be the ultimate scope for you. It has all the aperture and state-of-the art optical coatings you need to keep you busy observing and imaging for the rest of your life. It also has enough useful features to handle almost any observing or astrophotography chore you set for it. And it does it all at a price that may surprise you when compared to competitive 14" scopes that are not nearly as advanced.

Tech Details

Aperture 14"
Focal Length 3556mm
Focal Ratio f/10
Heaviest Single Component 115 lbs.
Highest Useful Magnification 711x
Motorized Controls Computerized GoTo
Weight 166 lbs.
Optical Coatings UHTC
Resolution 0.33 arc seconds
Supplied Eyepiece 26mm Super Plossl
Telescope Type Advanced Coma-Free
View Finder 8x50
Visual Limiting Magnitude 15.3
Warranty 1 year

Reviews

Review by:
I love my LX200. The quality and the easy to use is great. (Posted on 8/4/2017)
Review by:
There are a few things you need to consider when you get a scope this large. These are the things that I considered and learned before and after my purchase.
1) Can you afford it? Make sure that the cost of this scope and accessories is not going to put you into financial stress. If it does you most likely will be selling it within two years of your purchase at a much lower cost.
2) Next is, are you going to travel with it or use it on in an observatory? I do both. Traveling with this size scope is not easy. I have a 2011 Ford Escape and this scope and all accessories fill the entire back of my care with the seats down up to the roof. I need help lifting this in and out of my car. I purchased the JMI case, which works great! I would suggest a small trailer if you can tow one.
3) Do you have dark skies? If you are buying this scope you want to see those deep sky objects. You want a fairly dark sky away from the light pollution. When I got mine, I was in a dark sky but job requirements required me to move and now I am in the northern part of Buffalo, NY. I cannot see these dark sky objects any longer with my scope like I did 90 miles south of Buffalo. This is why I travel with it.
4) Set up time, when traveling really does not take that much time, about an hour. When it is in the observatory, 5 minutes as long as you park the scope. This is of course after you get yourself familiar with the scope and know where everything is.
5) If you decide you can afford this scope it is spectacular when you view in dark skies; the deep sky objects jump at you in the EP! It is worth every dollar I have spent on it! (Posted on 8/4/2017)
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Supplied Accessories

  • 14" f/10 Advanced Coma-Free catadioptric optics with UHTC group multicoatings (multicoated enhanced aluminum coated Pyrex mirrors overcoated with quartz and multicoated water white glass corrector lens), integral glare stop baffles, and primary mirror lock
  • Heavy duty fork mount with carrying/tube positioning handles, 4" diameter polar axis ball bearings, electric and manual slow motion controls and locks on both axes
  • 16-channel GPS (global positioning system) automatic alignment system, with electronic true-level sensor and automatic magnetic declination correction
  • Autostar II go-to computer control system with Smart Mount Technology, 3.5 Megabyte flash memory, multifunction keypad hand control with 2-line digital readout display, permanently programmable Smart Drive dual-axis periodic error correction, 9-speed drive controls on both axes (with slewing at up to 8 degrees per second), High-Precision Pointing, 145,000-object onboard celestial software library
  • Adjustable tilt hand control holder on fork arm
  • 7-port multi-function control panel on drive base, including two RS-232 serial interface ports
  • Computer-controlled high-torque 14 volt DC right ascension and declination worm gear drives with 5.75" main drive gears
  • DC power supplied from internal battery compartments accepting 8 (user-supplied) C-cells (optional 25' cords are available for powering from auto cigarette lighter plug or from 110-140 volts AC)
  • Straight-through 8 x 50mm finder on removable dovetail
  • 1.25" visual back
  • 1.25" prism-type star diagonal
  • 1.25" 26mm Series 4000 Super Plössl eyepiece (137x)
  • Adjustable-height all-metal field tripod
  • Dust cover
  • Autostar Software Suite Astronomer's Edition.

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