About this product
Part Number: 0456100
The Explore Scientific iEXOS-100 PMC-Eight Equatorial Mount - a highly portable, lightweight, wireless-controlled German Equatorial mount for visual astronomy and astrophotography. Ideal for smaller telescope setups and cameras.
Fitted with a regular Vixen-style saddle the payload for visual astronomy is 8.6kg or 6.8kgs for imaging.
Controlled by the class leading PMC-Eight wireless control system, this mount doesn't require a handset and will run off any modern Android device, Apple iPads (running iOS12+), or Windows 10 tablets and computers. In addition to these packages, the PMC-8 is also fully ASCOM compliant and will connect to any ASCOM Standards Compliant POTH Client from Explore Scientific (either wired or wireless) to work with virtually any sky software that supports ASCOM.
The Explore Stars control app can be downloaded from Android, Apple and Windows app stores and is a very intuitive piece of software, with the ability to use your device's GPS signal to download location and time/date data - no more entering info by hand. Explore Stars allows for simple setup with the click of a button.
The PMC-Eight hardware is based around 8 separate CPUs - neatly apportioning different control instructions and calculations to each processor. This makes for very smooth control functionality and very accurate tracking and encoder responses. From a tracking and slewing point of view, the mount is very quiet, which users will doubtlessly appreciate when the using mount late at night, especially in more heavily populated areas.
Alignment takes place using either a two or a three star system (three giving the more accurate results). Simply roughly polar align the mount through the polar borehole and the PMC-8/Explore Stars system will correct for slight polar offset when using a three star alignment. If you require more accurate tracking, the mount is fully ST-4 auto guiding compliant with its own guide port, supporting both on camera and serial guiding.
The latitude altitude adjustment on the mount head is geared, whereas azimuth is a simpler revolving moment. The tripod of the iEXOS is lightweight but has a handy spreader tray which helps reinforce the spreader bar. A bubble level also helps the user keep the tripod as level as possible. RA and DEC clutches are operated by reassuringly solid helical knurled metal designs. Both mount and tripod have luminous "glow-in-the-dark" inlays, which help orientate the mount in the dark and may also prevent accidental knocking of the iEXOS, while in use in low light situations.
- Mount head weight: 4.28kg/9.45 lbs
- Tripod weight: 2.42kgs/5.35 lbs
- Tripod fully collapsed, no mount head: 64.77cm/25.5”
- Tripod open, retracted legs, no mount head: 63.5cm/25”
- Tripod open, retracted legs with the mount head: 97.8cm/38.5” at highest point, 91.44cm/36” to the center of the mounting bracket
- Tripod open, legs fully extended, no mount head: 106.68cm/42”
- Tripod open, legs fully extended with the mount head: 114.3cm/45” at highest point
- Counterweights: 1kg/2.2lbs each
|Average Rating (1 Review): |A light and easy mount for smaller payloads, with a few small issues.
Wednesday, 12 June 2019 | Richard
After a useful discussion with Grant at FLO, I ordered the mount for use with a Coronado Solarmax III 70mm. The mount arrived very well packed, and the manual from ES was well written. Since there is no handset as such, the mount is controlled via an inbuilt "dumb" WiFi receiver/transmitter, and so I installed the control software on an Amazon Fire HD tablet. This requires that the tablet connects to the mount's wifi, and no longer internet-connected. I had no problems connecting to the scope, even in a noisy environment, and the software is intuitive and does it's job well.
The scope (~4 kg) is possibly towards the upper end of what the mount is comfortable with, as I found balancing in RA tough, and it may need another counterweight or a longer counterweight bar. The "biggest" issue, however, is the latitude adjustment knob, especially if you live in the "far" north or south. Once you need to set your latitude to much more than 59 degrees, the RA locking nut and the latitude adjustment knob crash and lock together, and it's no longer possible to go further. It would be much more useful to have the whole latitude adjustment on the other side of the mount. However, since this is unlikely, then a smaller knob (50% smaller) would solve this problem. This is much more of a critical point for me, as I'm at 59.5 degrees north!
In summary, even with the issues just highlighted, the mount behaves well and for lighter equipment is extremely good value for money.
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