I thought one of the advantages of the Mak's over the Schmidt's was a
smaller obstruction. The disadvantage is that the Mak's require a much
thicker more complicated front correcter lens which makes them more
expensive and heavier than Schmidt's and which limits there size to about
Both of these scopes are pretty ubiquitous. You can find them renamed and
sold by nearly everyone. Optically, I think the short tube might have a
titch of a better reputation. It will have chromatic abberation issues when
pushed to higher powers. The little Mak is neat...especially if you have a
35mm and want an inexpensive telephoto lens.
Probably the best deal on the short tube is from www.eagleoptics.com .
First click on their telescopes. Then pick "Eagle Optics Telescopes", then
"Eagle Optic Telescopes by Celestron"...I think it is the third scope and it
is listed for $268 US.
For the little Mak, Adorama is probably the best place to go. I don't know
that it is listed on their website, www.adoramacamera.com but you will find
their number there. They sell it under their "ProOptic" brand name. I
think it runs around $220.
You get more in the way of a astronomical telescope with the Eagle Optics
deal. It comes with a very nice finder scope, a sturdy tripod and a decent,
albiet sloppy, GEM. Oh yeah, and they throw in a copy of "The Sky" software
(version 2.1 for Celestron.)
Digital Camera and Video Camera tidbits
>Sorry Wally I have not ever used one of those Vista MC90 telescopes. I did
>take a look at the Island Eyepiece web site that you mentioned.
>Lacking other information there are two things that would make me pick the
>refractor over the little Mak. The main reason to choose the 508 is a
>proven track record for that particular scope rather than the reputation of
>a general type of telescope. The second reason relates to a thread
>elsewhere on this newsgroup. When I saw the photo of the business end of
>the MC90 one feature of the telescope really grabbed me. The obstruction
>looks huge! I will be surprised if I find that the MC90 has an obstruction
>less than 40 percent. I don't know how you feel Wally but I don't
>give up 40 percent of any thing of value. What is more valuable than
>aperture to an astronomer with a small instrument? The Maksutov reputation
>for high image quality can't help us much if the images are not bright or
>I am no optics guru but my best guess is that the size of the required
>obstruction takes a smaller bite percentage wise when the telescope has a
>larger aperture. Ask an expert if the optical recipe of the
>Maksutov-Cassegrain works better when the aperture is greater than say,
>125mm. If we find the size of the obstruction on a Meade 7"
>Maksutov-Cassegrain that would test this idea.
>Make sure you take a good long look at the Mak if you decide to buy it. I
>recommend using one at night before you make a decision based on reputation
>or brief daytime encounters at the sales counter of a dealer.
>Don Pedro Jr.
>>Does anyone have any experience with the Vista MC90 Maksutov? I have
>>been considering the Vista 508 short tube
>>refractor for visual observing (and portability) but ran across
>>the Vista MC90 Mak on the Island Eyepiece web site. I've
>>never owned a baby Mak but have heard they have very sharp
>>images for their size. Any comments?