The Telescope Drive Master

A mid-level mounts’ best friend?

My Telescope Drive Master v2 arrives
My Telescope Drive Master v2 arrives

To take truly inspirational images of the cosmos you need three astronomical tools; a telescope (optical tube assembly), an imaging device (normally a CCD or DSLR camera), and a mount. All three components should be of good quality in order to achieve the results desired during your journey to the beginning of space and time.

Some amateur astronomers may believe the imaging device and optical tube assembly are more important than the mount. This might make a good mount less important in their eyes, but a safe, steady, well-made mount is just as important in taking great astroimages.

Modern telescope mounts

There are modern mounts in the $3000 range available capable of excellent tracking with minimal periodic error (error induced due to small mechanical imperfections in the device). You can also break the piggy bank and opt for a German equatorial mount (GEM) in the five figure range that’s even more accurate. In the case of modern mounts, made by a reputable manufacturer, you really do get what you pay for. 

The Telescope Drive Master

In an effort to make mid-level and GEMs, even better Hungarian firm MDA-TelesCoop has introduced the Telescope Drive Master (TDM). Designed to correct the periodic error of a telescope mount, without the requirement for an auto guider system, the Telescope Drive Master is made to enhance the ability of both mid-level and expensive GEMs.

You can obtain a Telescope Drive Master through Explore Scientific in North America and in other areas of the world.

Price: $1,799.95 

My Telescope Drive Master v2 arrives 

17059I used a Celestron CGE Pro GEM to test the claims of MDA-TelesCoop concerning the Telescope Drive Master’s ability to make this excellent quality mount even better.

I got the Telescope Drive Master v2 I tested through Explore Scientific. It arrived securely and safely packaged, and with the right mechanical adapter for my CGE Pro GEM. You need to indicate which model of mount you’ll be using with the TDM when ordering because each requires a specific adapter.

You can check which models the Telescope Drive Master v2 can be used with here.

They included instructions and helpful photographs on setting up the Telescope Drive Master, which I found easy to understand. They also helped explain how the TDM works with my CGE Pro GEM and computer to make beautiful images. Getting the setup right only took me about an hour and a few minutes to get everything ready to view the cosmos.


The Telescope Drive Master significantly reduced the periodic and even non-periodic tracking errors of my CGE Pro GEM to within 0.5″. This is a result in agreement with previous reviews and independent tests.

It also integrated well with the autoguider system, offering me precise tracking of celestial objects.

These results would likely not be possible with a lesser quality mount than my CGE Pro GEM. Still, it should improve the ability of even mid-level mounts.

The conclusion

Overall this device did improve the ability of my mount to improve the quality of images taken of the cosmos. It’s worth the price I paid to obtain.

If I was a serious astroimager desiring to enhance my ability to take stunning, unforgettable images of the cosmos, I would purchase the Telescope Drive Master.

It can definitely make your journey to the beginning of space and time more memorable.

Telescope Drive Master

Price: $1,799.95

Learn more about TelesCoop here.

Learn more about Celestron’s complete lineup of astronomy products here.

Looking for a quality telescope for your journey to the beginning of space and time? Read about Explore Scientific’s 80mm Triplet Apochromatic Refractor

Need a good pair of astronomical binoculars? Check out Denkmeier’s new Binotron-27 Binoviewers

Looking for a quality portable mount to enhance your journey to the beginning of space and time? Read about the Maxim DL

Meade’s New LX600 is Faster, Smarter and Easier to Setup

This Meade 16" LX600 is state of the art astronomy equipment
This Meade 16″ LX600 is state of the art astronomy equipment

Astronomy Products

The New LX600 f/8 ACF with StarLock Advanced Technology is easy to transport and setup at your next dark sky viewing spot.

Meade’s amazing LX600 f/8 with StarLock Advanced Technology takes a giant leap forward by making Astro-imaging easier and transportation and setup of your new LX600 a breeze. Meade’s new LX600 makes taking eye-popping images of Jupiter as easy as focusing the camera and opening the shutter.

StarLock Advanced Technology

  • Provides astronomers with full-time completely automatic guiding and closed loop precision pointing.

New f/8 Advanced Coma-Free Optical System

  • New mirror mounting and internal Crayford-style focusing system achieves true zero image-shift and includes a two-speed focuser.

All New X-Wedge

  • Precision machined aluminum for maximum stability with smooth, accurate altitude and azimuth adjustments on the fly. The new X-Wedge is the essential astronomy accessory for polar mounting your new LX600 for long exposure Astro imaging.

Meade’s new LX600 is the next generation in state-of-the-art, high-end astronomy telescopes for the serious sky watcher willing to invest more than just time. Drop by a Meade store today to have a look at an LX600. You won’t be disappointed and you could find yourself flying to Jupiter this November on your new Meade LX 600 16″ telescope to take images you’ll never forget.

Watch this YouTube video on opening the box to your new Meade LX600.

Want to see more on great telescopes from Meade? Read this article on the Meade LS6 ACF telescope,

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