The large-aperture 12" LX600-ACF Cassegrain Go-To Telescope with StarLock from Meade is a technologically advanced Cassegrain telescope attached to a heavy-duty motorized and computer-controlled dual-tine fork mount. Its innovative optical design, combined with Meade's Ultra High Transmission Coatings (UHTC) and their Advanced Coma Free (ACF) optical system, ensures that images are bright and clear; with high contrast, superb resolution, and faithful color reproduction. The ACF system uses specially-engineered corrector plates and mirrors that complement each other to improve the scope's resolution and its ability to split binary stars and allow you to observe fine details otherwise missed by other scopes of the same size. This version of the 12" LX600 ACF is offered here with the mount and OTA, but without a tripod for those who have a reliable and stable support system.
Multiple technologies work together to put this mounting system above the standard Go-To mount. Meade outfitted it with a built-in GPS receiver and a time chip, so the mount can automatically determine its location, day, and time when it's turned on. This information is sent to the StarLock system which uses two digital cameras built into an 80mm f/5 refractor OTA that is piggybacked onto the main LX600 optical tube. The cameras take wide-field photos of the night sky and compare them to its internal database to automatically align the scope. During long observation or exposure imaging sessions, the StarLock system continuously checks its orientation and tracking and adjusts as needed, sending the data to the Smart Mount and SmartDrive systems which learns the tracking errors and adjusts itself for the future.
The brain of the mount is Meade's iconic AutoStar II computer controller. This hand-held unit has an internal database of over 145,000 objects from the Moon and planets, to galaxies, nebulae, and constellations. Coupled with the StarLock system, the AutoStar's tracking accuracy is an impressive ±1 arcsec. It can calculate future events like Sunrises and meteor showers, and predict Solar and Lunar eclipses for the next 100 years. Once set up and running, the AutoStar II can take you on guided tours of the best objects visible above, including audio tours that can be heard from the internal speaker.