Paramount ME II Classic

Everything you expect from a Paramount, and more.

Click here to find out why the Paramount ME II™ might be an ideal solution for your astronomy pursuits.  For an interesting Sky & Telescope magazine article describing how astronomers utilize the Paramount ME II, click here.

Hardware Specifications

  • 240 lb. (109 kg) total instrument capacity, 480 lb. (218 kg) total capacity
  • Fourth-generation telescope control system (TCS) combines state-of-the-art electronics with field-tested reliability
  • TPoint-assisted Accurate Polar Alignment makes polar alignment a breeze
  • Belt-driven gears offer virtually zero backlash
  • Unibody mount design weighs 84 lb (38 kg)
  • Maximum seven (7) arcseconds peak-to-peak periodic error before PEC
  • Ample room to add through the mount cabling
  • Power supply and PC-to-mount cabling included
  • Versatile equipment mounting plate (a.k.a. the Versa-Plate) that can accept virtually any optic
  • All electronics and wiring are enclosed within the mount (power supply is external)
  • 30 arcsecond or better all sky pointing accuracy with TPoint and Super Model™
  • Clutchless design maintains TPoint assisted pointing accuracy
  • Two port USB 2.0 hub on the Instrument Panel, right where it is needed most
  • Track or slew up to three hours past the meridian

Software SpecificationsParamount MYT Software Suite

  • Includes the Paramount Software Suite (featuring TheSky™ Imaging edition, Dome Control, and more).  The USB thumb drive comes with installers that are compatible with macOS, Windows and Linux (ARM32, ARM64, and x86_64 architectures).
  • Software features ProTrack™, Direct Guide™ (guider cable free autoguiding), TPoint Super Model™,
    All Sky Image Link™, Closed Loop Slew, @Focus™ automated focus, periodic error curve fitting,
    permanent periodic error correction, live stacking, dithering and more
  • The Multi-OS Plus module lets you install and use TheSky on all your computers and operating systems while maintaining TheSky’s familiar look and feel.


The pictured Paramount ME II Pyramid portable pier, Software Bisque Permanent Pier, the Paramount ME II Large Dovetail and five additional counterweights are sold separately.



On-axis Absolute Encoders vs. Motor-based Encoders.

Paramount's equipped with on-axis absolute encoders know where they are at all times.  Paramount's with incremental encoders (or motor-based encoders) know only how far they have moved since they were initialized using a nightly process called homing.

The crucial additional difference is that the on-axis absolute encoders are fitted directly to the mount axes themselves, bypassing the worm drives.  Paramount's with incremental encoders are fitted to the worms instead, which means that with incremental encoders alone, periodic errors in the worm drive show up in the tracking.  These mounts must be calibrated and corrected using a process called periodic error correction (PEC), which measures and records the repeatable gear train errors and removes them.  (TheSky features advanced, multi-harmonic PE detection and PEC calibration that minimizes periodic error in mounts with incremental encoders.)

For mounts with incremental encoders, homing re-zeros the encoders when precise sensors on each of the axes are reached. From then on, the incremental encoders are in effect delivering absolute readings.

However, the crucial additional difference remains, namely that the incremental encoder system is behind the worm drive, and periodic error correction is still required to get the best out of the RA tracking.

High-resolution on-axis absolute encoder technology is significantly more expensive than incremental encoders.

The short answer is, “it depends.”

On-axis absolute encoders eliminate periodic error and enable the mount to always know where “home” is.

That’s convenient and expedites setup for an evening of imaging. However, with Paramounts, periodic error is already very low, and after a one-time training, it becomes negligible. Moreover, Paramount’s included Homing software homes in only 15 to 60 seconds.

So, at least with Paramounts, periodic error is practically non-existent and homing is a breeze.

What about pointing and tracking?

Without encoders, Paramounts routinely allow 5-to-10-minute unguided exposures; many have reported 20 minutes. Also without encoders, Paramount’s produce all sky pointing accuracies at or below 30 arcseconds RMS.

Absent Paramount’s exceptional software, that performance would not be possible. Operating in conjunction with TPoint™, ProTrack™ continuously updates the mount’s position across both axes to correct system-wide tracking errors including tube flexures, atmospheric refraction, polar misalignment, harmonic errors from mis-centered encoders and/or worm gears, and more.

On-axis absolute encoders alone cannot correct these errors which exist with all telescopes. A properly applied telescope model is necessary to achieve superior pointing and tracking.

So are on-axis absolute encoders right for you?

Perhaps if you want to enjoy the conveniences mentioned above. And for many, that’s enough.

With that said, the optional on-axis 26-bit Renishaw absolute encoders with 0.02 arc second precision are the finest available and they operate in temps as low as –40° C.

See the Paramount Lubrication Video for details how to lubricate gear-driven Paramount mounts.  (Log in required.)



The Paramount ME II delivers superior performance made possible through its artful integration of precision mechanics, advanced control system electronics, and the uniquely capable Paramount Software Suite (included).

Skillfully carrying up to 240 lb./109 kg total instrument capacity of telescopes, cameras, and accessories (480 lb./218 kg total capacity), the Paramount ME II can help you create your next photographic masterpiece or help make your next discovery in your permanent observatory.

Legendary Paramount system performance is within reach. Grab yours today.

Additional information

Weight 115 lbs
Dimensions 30 × 27 × 17 in

Motor-based encoders, On-axis absolute encoders

The table below lists all the items that are included inside the two Paramount ME II shipping boxes.

Item Description
Paramount ME II™ Robotic Mount German equatorial mount body.
Versa-Plate™ Mounting Plate Attached to the mount during shipping, the Versa-Plate™ telescope mounting plate includes an integrated Losmandy D dovetail and grid of mounting holes to securely mount your telescope.
USB Cable 4.6 m (15-foot) USB 2.0 mini-b USB cable.
Power Supply Unit (PSU) Input: 100-240V AC ~50/60 Hz.
Output: 221 W max. 4.6A 48V DC.
Power Supply Extension Cable 6-ft PSU to Paramount Electronics Box adapter cable.
PSU Cable 6-ft. long power cable with a NEMA 5-15 male plug.
Hand Controller with Joystick Hand paddle includes lanyard, variable rate switch, integrated red-light flashlight, integrated joystick for homing and “at the telescope” control
Counterweight Shaft Carries up to six (6) 13.6 kg (30 lb.) or six (6) 18 kg (40 lb.) counterweights.
Dimensions: 4.763 cm (1.875 in.) wide x 47 cm (18.5 in.) long, 1.875-in. bore.
Weight: 14 kg (30 lb.)
Height: approximately 7.3 cm (2.9 in.)
Counterweights Two (2) 14 kg (30 lb.) counterweights.

Note that the heavier the payload, the more counterweights required for balance and you may need to purchase additional counterweights if your imaging system weighs more than about 28 kg (60 lb.).

Counterweight Safety Knob This knob is installed at the end of the counterweight shaft to prevent the counterweights from accidentally sliding off.
Altitude Adjuster Wrench A convenient tool to help rotate the integrated altitude adjustment mechanism when making polar alignment adjustments with heavy payloads.
Accessory Pouch Stowable pouch includes:

-Two 3/8-in. should bolt hole plugs.
-Two 5/16-in. x 2 1/4-in. RA locking shoulder bolts
-Two 5/16-in. x 2 1/4-in. Dec locking shoulder bolts
-Four Delrin washers for mount surface protection
-Four plastic plugs to cover the outer side of the RA and Dec locking holes.

Printed Paramount User Guide The 200+ page user guide contains in-depth instructions for setting up and using your Paramount ME II mount.
Printed Paramount Software Quick Start A guide to get your mount and Paramount Software Suite subscription registered with Software Bisque with instructions for installing the software.
Paramount Software Suite The 32-GB thumb drive includes installers for TheSky Imaging Edition plus the Dome module on macOS, Ubuntu Linux (running on ARM32, ARM64 or x86_64 architectures) and Microsoft Windows operating systems.

Control your Paramount mount, CMOS/DSLR/CCD camera, autoguider, focuser, filter wheel, rotator, and dome or roll-off roof from one convenient application on the operating system of your choice.

The Paramount Software Suite additionally offers Paramount mounts the following exclusive features:

– ProTrack™: In addition to TPoint pointing accuracy improvements, all Paramount mounts use the exclusive ProTrack™ technology to improve the mount’s unguided tracking accuracy. With ProTrack™, you can take five minute or longer (depending on your imaging system), unguided astrophotos.
– Direct Guide™: Direct control system access for cable-free autoguiding. No more failure-prone guider cables to mess with.
– Train PEC: If you choose not to purchase the Paramount ME II with optional absolute on-axis encoders, rest assured the mount’s periodic error will be negligible with TheSky’s Train PEC feature.

Through the Mount Cable Tie One 12-inch plastic cable tie that can be used to help run cables through the mount.
Hex Key Set Thirteen piece Imperial hex key set.

Paramount ME II Specifications

Paramount ME II Documentation

Paramount ME II Technical Drawings

Visitors to this page also viewed…

Superior accessories made by Software Bisque for your Paramount mount