Who Makes SCTs

The question of who makes SCTs is easy to answer: Meade and Celestron. That is it. In the past, a few other telescope manufacturers have tried their hand at the Schmidt Cassegrain, but usually not for long. Renowned Japanese telescope manufacturer Takahashi, for example, produced only approximately 100 of its legendary TSC225 9-inch SCTs in the late 1980s. Belgium's Lichtenknecker Optics has also made a few SCTs. Their 8-inch models are renowned for their optical quality, or so it seems. They are rarely seen.

Why are no companies other than Meade and Celestron making SCTs today? Maybe this is because the other makers who have entered the SCT arena have been, like Takahashi and Lichtenknecker, focused on making the best SCTs it is humanly possible to make. That does not come cheaply in any scope design. The Lichtenknecker 8-inch, for example, cost nearly 5,000 German marks in the mid-1980s. The big problem, though? It is hard to best Meade and Celestron when it comes to SCTs, whether you want to produce an expensive scope or just something similar to what comes out of California. They have the process down, and their products, while not on the Takahashi level, perhaps, are very good nevertheless. As a matter of fact, the few Tak TSC225 SCTs that I have used have been very good, yes, but only somewhat better than a good Meade or Celestron.

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