What do I think of the OMEGON LX3 Tracker?

I received this question after posting Three Comets to Flickr, and after posting associated discussion here about the Omegon LX2. I was not aware that Omegon had released an LX3, I had to see how the two devices compared. My comparison is based upon my actual experience with the LX2, and with what I was able to glean about the LX3.

I have written about using the LX2 in two articles: Have I Ever Seen Two Comets in the Same Photo?, What Tracking was I using for Three Comets? I have also posted another image that used the LX2 in Flickr, Milky Way and Meteor with Jupiter.

The LX3 has an optical polar alignment finder where the LX2 uses a short plastic tube (more like a straw, because there are no optics). I am certain that the LX3 can be aligned more accurately, and maybe that will be more important at longer focal lengths than I have used with the LX2. I shot Three Comets at 55mm after aligning through the “straw” and the tracking looked great.

The LX3 has 60 minutes of tracking vs. 30 minutes for the LX2, which is a very nice improvement. This is important, because after the timer runs down, rewinding it moves the camera back to where the it was pointing 30 minutes ago. This means that the camera must be repointed at the star field before proceeding. Fortunately, I only wanted 30 minutes for Three Comets, because I wanted to avoid the thicker, wetter atmosphere closer to the horizon.

Improved tracking accuracy and payload capacity – I cannot speak to these. I was, however, intrigued by idea that the LX3’s clockwork ticks per minute can be measured to assess tracking accuracy at various spring tensions. Similar to the LX3, the LX2 has a spring that can be set to support heavier loads. I think that I will measure my ticks with various lenses.

That’s about it for comparison. As for Omegon LX3 being worth the extra money over the LX2. I would say that it depends. Thirty extra minutes of tracking is awefully attractive!

© 2021 Jim Johnson

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