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Engineered for impressive performance and copious light gathering ability, the massive LX200-ACF UHTC 16" f/10 Catadioptric Telescope represents the largest aperture in Meade Instruments's
LX line. It combines an oversized primary mirror with multiple
technologies to produce distortion-free high-contrast images with true
color rendition across the entire flat field of view with an impressive
Dawes' resolution of just 0.285 arcsec. The scope's performance begins
with the aplanatic Advanced Coma-Free (ACF) optical system which
produces a flat field of view with reduced astigmatism and zero
diffraction. A low-expansion borosilicate primary mirror further reduces
distortion due to temperature fluctuation, and the Schott Borofloat
glass corrector plate aligns the light waves to correct spherical and
chromatic aberrations. Meade then fully multi-coats all optical surfaces
with their proprietary Ultra-High Transmission Coatings (UTHC) which
increase light transmission, further improve color fidelity, and boost
contrast. For long-exposure astrophotography or long-duration
observation sessions, the LX200 boasts a primary mirror lock to
completely cancel any residual image shift due to mirror movement.
version of the LX200 is offered here without any accessories, mount, or
tripod for those who have all their gear and just want to upgrade their
OTA. This large OTA weighs in at a substantial 67 pounds by itself, so
make sure the mount head and tripod it gets put on can handle it in
addition to the weight of any accessories. To ensure a rock-solid
connection to your mount it is outfitted with the larger Losmandy-style
What can you see through a 16” LX200-ACF with Advanced Coma-Free UHTC optics?
With a flat coma-free field, state-of-the-art UHTC multicoated
optics, and a resolving power of 0.29 arc seconds, this 16” Meade is an
advanced instrument capable of serious research and astrophotography for
advanced amateur and university alike. With four times the light
gathering capacity of an 8” scope (over two and a half times that of a
10” scope), this scope’s fully multicoated 16” optics give the Universe a
detail and extent 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.
advantages of the scope’s coma-free field, fully multicoated optics, and
large diffraction-limited aperture are immediately apparent,
particularly to the experienced observer with an eye trained to see
extremely fine detail. Color becomes visible to the eye in many nebulas.
Orion is a glowing blue-green mass of filaments, often tinged with red
and yellow for the keen-eyed observer from a dark sky site. Globular
clusters can be resolved to their cores, with each cluster becoming a
vivid ball of tiny starpoints instead of a hazy blur.
and structure in the arms of the Whirlpool Galaxy become clear. Small
details in the atmospheres of Jupiter and Saturn and on the surface of
Mars reveal themselves at high powers (given suitably good seeing and a
filter to cut down the immense brightness of a scope with over 3300
times the light-gathering capacity your eye).
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 detail that is invisible in smaller scopes.
Difficult low surface brightness 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 Advanced
Coma-Free performance that is similar to that of professional
Ritchey-Chrétien optics, but at only a fraction the price.
same objects yield magnificently detailed long-exposure CCD and 35mm
images. However, field rotation will cause stars at the corners of an
image to streak during exposures longer than five minutes if the scope
is installed on the optional Super Giant field tripod or altazimuth
This scope needs truly dark and steady
skies if you want to take full advantage of its large aperture 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 weighs 125 pounds. The drive
base/fork arm assembly weighs 105 pounds. At least two able-bodied
people are needed to lift the scope’s components safely onto an optional
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. Another person to thread
the rod into the scope base while the lifters position the scope to line
up the holes would make the job easier and less adventurous in the
But, if you have dark skies and help
getting to them, or you have a permanent observatory with a suitable
existing pier or tripod, this 16” LX200-ACF with fully multicoated UHTC
optics may be the ultimate scope for you. It has enough aperture to keep
you busy observing and imaging for the rest of your life, with
state-of-the art Advanced Coma-Free optics that emulate the performance
of professional Ritchey-Chrétien reflectors at a fraction the price,
UHTC multicoatings, and enough useful features to handle almost any
observing or astrophotography chore you set for it.