Meade Instruments’ New Coronado SolarMax III Solar Telescope

Meade’s Coronado SolarMax III (SMIII) is a 70-mm f/5.7 refractor equipped with 60-mm external hydrogen-alpha (H-α) filters. The new solar scope is available in both single-stacked (<0.7Å) and double-stacked (<0.5Å) bandpasses and either 10-mm or 15-mm blocking filters.

What makes the SMIII standout? The SMIII 70-mm has a new two-speed rack-and-pinion focuser, which creates a more user-friendly interaction with the telescope. The two-speed, 2-inch focuser has both coarse and fine focus controls allowing the user to get a more precise focus, critical for both solar imaging and visual observing.

Additionally, the SMIII 70-mm includes only external “True” H-α etalon filters, giving higher contrast views and sharper features compared with models using smaller internal H-α etalon designs. Experience darker backgrounds, sharper features, and higher contrast with the new SolarMax III series telescope.

RichView Tuning

The SMIII 70-mm also includes Coronado’s patented RichView tuning allowing direct tuning of the primary etalon filter. Meade reports the patented RichView tuning technology provides additional tuning range and an overall better way of adjusting the filters bandpass. Meade attests that no other commercially available H-α telescope can provide the tuning range and accuracy of the new SolarMax III telescope. The system is designed to allow you to tune for the highest contrast views of your favorite solar features without sacrificing image quality.

Double-Stack Option

Double-stacked models ((<0.5Å bandpass) include two “True” external etalon filters. One etalon filter is equipped with Coronado’s patented RichView tuner. The second etalon is equipped for tip-tilt tuning using Coronado’s T-Max tuner. Whether you are focusing on the solar edge or surface features in the chromosphere, the SolarMax III 70-mm has you covered. And because both etalon filters are now external to the telescope, you can easily remove both filters and rear blocking filter diagonal to use the scope as a normal refractor for night-time astronomy.

Four SolarMax III Options

The SolarMax III 70-mm solar telescope with the RichView system and a 15-mm blocking filter is priced at $2399US. A version with a 10-mm blocking filter is priced at $2299US. Both models ship with an 18-mm CEMAX eyepiece, Sol Ranger Solar Finder, Vixen-style dovetail mounting rail, and an all-new black-and-gold aluminum hardside carry case. Mounting rings are also included.

The SolarMax III 70-mm Double Stack with 15-mm blocking filter is priced at $3199US. A double-stack version with a 10-mm blocking filter is available for $2999US. Both double-stack models include the same accessories as the single-stack versions.

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