Meades Instruments is set to introduce a telescope that will bring the most advanced features of star gazing to the amateur, all in a palatable and easy to use format. Setting up and calibrating the ETX-LS telescope is as simple as flipping a switch, literally. Using built-in Integrated Sensor Modules (ISM), which includes GPS and Level North Technology (LNT) sensors and the ECLIPS CCD Camera, the ETX-LS aligns itself for optimal viewing and will calculate the time, date and location, evaluate two stars, and then begin building a ‘real time’ map of the night’s sky. A video output allows for immediate viewing and a built-in camera captures high resolution images recorded to SD card. Meades has even tossed in a guided tour complete with voice narration.
No word on price or availability, but they’ll be showing off the ETX-LS telescope at this year’s CES.
Press release below
MEADE’S NEW ETX-LS™ TELESCOPE IS NAMED ONE OF 2009’S BEST NEW CONSUMER ELECTRONICS BY THE CONSUMER ELECTRONICS ASSOCIATION
Heralded For Excellence In Design And Engineering At CES’s New York Press Preview, the ETX-LS with LightSwitch™ Technology Takes All The Work Out Of Using A Telescope And Makes Astronomy More Fun
IRVINE, CA – (November 11, 2008) – Meade Instruments® (NasdaqGM: MEAD), the leading designer and manufacturer of telescopes and optical accessories for both professional and amateur astronomy enthusiasts worldwide, announced today that its high-performance ETX-LS automated telescope has been selected by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) as a 2009 Innovations Honoree in the highly competitive personal electronics category. The announcement, made today at the Consumer Electronic Show’s (CES) annual sneak peek of the hottest new products and upcoming technology trends in New York City, comes just weeks before the start of the 2009 International Year of Astronomy, a year-long UN sanctioned global celebration of astronomy’s role in science education and in the enrichment of all human cultures.
Set to be on display at the 2009 International Consumer Electronics Show this January, Meade’s new advanced technology telescope seamlessly incorporates groundbreaking, completely automatic LightSwitch alignment technology, the Astronomer-Inside multimedia guide and a built-in digital imager to enhance the backyard stargazing experience, while eliminating the complexities encountered by consumers when using traditional telescopes.
“As telescopes have become more advanced over the years, they have also become more complicated to use. The ETX-LS with LightSwitch Technology is loaded with an array of user-friendly features that incorporate advanced technology to overcome the biggest challenges commonly faced by less experienced stargazers,” said Steve Muellner, Meade’s CEO. “With the 2009 International Year of Astronomy approaching, this revolutionary telescope features the most advanced electronics and optics ever applied to a consumer telescope, eliminating the astronomy learning curve, and empowering everyday consumers to find, see and learn about thousands of stars, planets and galaxies in the easiest and most fun way from the convenience of their own backyards.”
Building on the popularity of Meade’s ETX series telescopes, the new ETX-LS’ innovative LightSwitch Technology alignment system eliminates the frustration experienced by consumers when aligning traditional telescopes, as it automatically aligns itself for optimum night sky viewing with just the flip of a switch. Engineered with a built-in Integrated Sensor Module (ISM), which includes GPS and Level North Technology (LNT) sensors and the ECLIPS CCD Camera, the patented LightSwitch Technology alignment system replaces the “human eye” for the only hands-free alignment available in any consumer telescope. Upon activation, the scope’s electronic sensors calculate the current time, date and location for the telescope, verifies the locations of two stars, and builds a ‘real time’ map of the night sky. The telescope is aligned and ready to use without any input from the user.
Equipped with an easy-to-use interface and a sensitive, wide-angle digital imager for taking vibrant, high-resolution, low-noise images of objects in the night sky, users are able to store images on the SD card or view them immediately by using the scope’s video output function. With the built-in speaker and video-out jack, The Astronomer-Inside functionality guides the user to the best objects in the sky and delivers a celestial encyclopedia of audio and video content that takes the user on an interactive guided tour of hundreds of night sky objects.
Built with Meade’s patented Advanced Coma-Free (ACF) Optics, the ETX-LS delivers the same sharp, flat, coma-free field of view found in professional Ritchey-Chrétien telescopes, but without the price tag. The ACF technology found in the ETX-LS outperforms the Schmidt-Cassegrain optical system found in many traditional consumer telescopes.
Designed to make astronomy more fun, exciting and most importantly, easy for a broad range of stargazers from seasoned enthusiasts to those just beginning their outer space adventure, Meade’s ETX-LS complements each user’s technical and astronomy expertise, meaning users can utilize the scope’s more advanced features as they become more comfortable with the scope’s capabilities.