LX200-ACF 8" Advanced Coma-Free Go-to altazimuth

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$2,699.00

Availability: In stock

This Meade 8" LX200-ACF has Advanced Coma-Free catadioptric optics. They provide coma-free images similar in quality to what you see in many ultra-premium Ritchey-Chrétien telescopes, but at a fraction the price of a true R-C.
Our Product #: 8210RU
Meade Product #: 0810-60-03
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Product Description

The Meade 8" LX200-ACF catadioptric telescope brings the astronomical image quality of a professional observatory to your back yard, at a down-to-earth price. It has a coma-free field similar to that produced by the Ritchey-Chrétien design optics used in most professional observatory telescopes and the Hubble Space Telescope, but at a fraction the cost of a true Ritchey-Chrétien.

Its coma-free field is superb for astrophotography. There's enough aperture to keep you happily observing and photographing for the rest of your life. Its multicoated UHTC optics have 15% higher light transmission than ordinary single-layer coatings for brighter images and shorter exposure times. It is portable enough to make taking it to a dark sky site easy. The LX200-ACF has all the useful features you need to cater to virtually every observing need you might have.

Remember that the best telescope for you is not always the biggest scope money can buy. It's the scope you use most often. And with its superb balance of aperture, weight, features, and price, you will find yourself using the 8" LX200-ACF with UHTC optics a lot. It may well be the perfect telescope for you . . . for life.

This Telescope's Optical System . . .

Advanced Coma-Free catadioptric designed to emulate the optical performance of a Ritchey-Chrétien telescope: 8" aperture catadioptric (2000mm focal length f/10). Fully multicoated UHTC (Ultra High Transmission Coatings) optics for 15% higher light transmission than standard single-layer optical coatings. Oversized primary mirror for brighter field edge illumination. Aluminum tube construction with glare-stop baffling and mirror lock. Guaranteed diffraction-limited performance with a flatter field edge-to-edge than other commercially-available catadioptric optical systems. 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 12mm eye relief.

Star diagonal: 1.25" multicoated prism type.

Eyepiece: 1.25" 26mm Series 4000 Super Plössl (77x). The eyepiece field of view is 0.65°, 30% wider than the full Moon, for good lunar and deep space views.

This Telescope's Mount . . .

Fork mount/drive system: Die-cast aluminum drive base. Dual die-cast aluminum fork arms support the optical tube. The mount includes servo-controlled 12VDC slewing and tracking motors in both altitude and azimuth. The motors are powered 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 110-120 volt 60 Hz AC household current in your back yard to conserve battery life, or to power the scope 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" icon in the support tab above.

GPS/AutoStar computer: A 16-channel 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 "LX200 computer" icon in the support tab above.

Adjustable height tripod: The tripod adjusts from 30" to 44" and damps vibrations quickly. It has 2" diameter steel legs, with a center leg brace for rigidity. Three 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 an 8" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics?

Virtually all the Universe! Under good seeing conditions, no less than six of Saturn's moons can be seen shuttling around the visibly multi-ringed planet. Even cold and distant Pluto, a faint magnitude 13.9 speck, can occasionally be glimpsed making its lonely way across the skies under appropriate dark-sky seeing conditions.

Distant galaxies barely visible in other telescopes begin to show their essential structure. Nebular wisps and fragments show markedly wider extent than with any smaller scope. Orion's nebulosity often fills your entire field of view, particularly with a narrow band light pollution filter to increase the contrast of the fainter segments.
Densely packed globular clusters are often resolved to the core. Thanks to the sharp coma-free field edge performance, all the stars in expansive open clusters stay sharply in focus across the full field, even in a very wide field eyepiece. And all of it can be photographed in detail (with surprisingly short exposure times) by adding a few inexpensive accessories.

The altazimuth drive of the LX200-ACF is more than accurate enough for piggyback, lunar, and planetary 35mm photos and much CCD imaging. However, field rotation causes stars at the corners of an image to streak during exposures longer than five minutes if a field derotator or an equatorial wedge isn't used to align the scope on the celestial pole. So, if you plan on doing deep space photography, you'll need to add an optional #2548 wedge to the 8" LX200-ACF.

While this 8" scope will perform well under mildly light-polluted suburban skies, it is at a remote site with truly dark and steady skies that you'll best be able to take full advantage of all its superb optical performance and the extra light transmission of its UHTC optics. It's not a scope that's happy staying in a heavily light-polluted city or suburban observing environment.

Luckily (actually more by design than by luck) the 8" LX200-ACF is a scope that one person can easily move to a dark sky site by himself or herself. A one-person setup once there is also reasonably easy to accomplish. Since the self-contained scope runs off flashlight batteries, there's no need to haul power adapters or a portable power supply with you, making transport and setup easier still.

This 8" scope has enough performance with its premium coma-free design and UHTC optics to keep you busy observing and photographing for the rest of your life. And the 8" LX200-ACF has virtually all the features you'll ever need to keep you happy out in the field or in your backyard. So, from the standpoint of being the perfect balance of being big enough to keep you observing for many years to come, portable enough to make it easy for you to take the scope to the right site for observing, with superb optics and enough useful features to keep the most ardent gadget lover in seventh heaven 'til the cows come home . . . and all at a price that won't break the bank . . . the 8" LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics may indeed be the perfect scope for you.

Tech Details

Aperture 8"
Focal Length 2000mm
Focal Ratio f/10
Heaviest Single Component 47 lbs.
Highest Useful Magnification 400x
Motorized Controls Computerized GoTo
Weight 73 lbs.
Optical Coatings UHTC
Resolution 0.57 arc seconds
Supplied Eyepiece 26mm Super Plossl
Telescope Type Advanced Coma-Free
View Finder 8x50
Visual Limiting Magnitude 14
Warranty 1 year

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Supplied Accessories

  • 8" f/10 Advanced Coma-Free catadioptric optics with UHTC group multicoatings (multicoated enhanced aluminum coated Pyrex mirrors and multicoated water white glass Schmidt 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 Level North alignment and 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 12 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 110-120 volts AC)
  • Straight-through 8 x 50mm finder on removable dovetail
  • 1.25" visual back
  • 1.25" prism star diagonal
  • 1.25" Series 4000 26mm Super Plössl eyepiece (77x)
  • Adjustable-height all-metal field tripod
  • Dust cover
  • AutoStar Suite Astronomer Edition Software.

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