Robert Comsol wrote:
But don't these exceptions suggest that navigational deflectors could also be shielded from our view (same goes for alien vessels) and don't necessarily have to look exposed like they usually do on the Enterprises?
I can buy the reason they look exposed on certain ships. Especially the big prestigious ones.
But if they don't have to be obvious and constructed into big housings (as would have to be the case with the Miranda, at least) then why tack on a extra awkward-looking piece of hull just to house a glowy showy deflector on the ass-end of a small fighting ship (see aforementioned Steamrunner/Sabre classes).