A couple nights ago, it was clear, still, and I had some energy left after the day. It was time for first light with my POD observatory and the LX 70 M6 OTA that I bought to use in the POD.
At that point, I simply picked up a modified tool box that has my Meade 5000 Series 82 degree eyepieces in it. With the solidity and compact size of the scope, I figured the 2 inch eyepieces should work well in it and wanted to try those out this first night.
I am very happy with both the POD and the scope. I still have some work and tweaks with the POD and need to get accustomed to the scope. With any scope, I have to let my eye and brain get adjusted to it before I can get the most out of anything new like this.
I will be a bit conservative in what I say, because I think the limiting factor is my eyes and not the scope. Additionally, it is difficult to make comparisons with I have seen with other scopes without having them there with me at the same time. My memory of what I have seen in the past is not as good as I would like, but I think I can make some general, somewhat vague assessments.
1. The contrast and tonal definition in this MAK is better than the two very fine SCTs that I have owned in the past, both my LS 8 ACF and an 11 inch SCT.
2. The MAK certainly reminds me of a rifle, while the SCT seems more like a full choke shotgun. My 8 inch f/5 OTA that I bought with my LX 70 mount is more like an open choke shotgun. Each has its strengths and weaknesses and is used for a different purpose....at least in my opinion.
3. The image in the MAK looks a lot like what I see in my refractors. The contrast in the MAK may be a tiny bit less than in a good, long focal length refractor of similar size, but not much. There is significantly higher contrast than with an SCT or Newtonian.
4. I really took notice when viewing the Moon. Except for a 14.25 inch f/6.7 reflector I bought that has an exceptional mirror needing repair now, this is the best view I have had with any of the scopes I have used for lunar viewing, At my elevation and location, I think the limiting lunar viewing factor will be atmospheric effects. On a good night, I believe I can use either my HD 60 4.5 mm eyepiece or some short focal length HD Orthoscopics that I have to great effect. Even with the 82 degree eyepieces, I was seeing things in craters than I am not used to seeing.
5. With the 14 mm 82 degree eyepiece I was able to clearly see three bands on Jupiter and some swirling, I think, in the two equatorial bands. I do need to use planetary type eyepieces and try some filters to get the last little bit out of the image, plus allow my eye and brain to adjust, in order to make sure on this. Again, I see the best detail on Jupiter that I have seen with anything I have used in the last few years.
6. On Mars, as well as on Jupiter, the images were bright enough that I was having trouble with a haze in the area of their disks, due to the lenses in my eyes. Even with that, I saw more detail on Mars than I have seen before, even though the contrast was diminished with the haze in my eyes. I think that using some filters to selectively knock down the light intensity will help the situation.
As a concluding statement, for me and my situation, the purchase of the LX 70 M6 OTA is proving to be a good decision. I think it will work very well as a partner to my LX 70 8 inch f/5 reflector.
I will comment later on specific things I view.