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159 of 161 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celestron Nexstar 130SLT
I recently purchased the Celestron Nexstar 130SLT and I am more than happy with my purchase! The quality of the scope and mount is excellent and the 'go-to SkyALign' mount is a breeze to set up; simply input your local time, date etc.. and aim the 'starpointer' at any three bright stars or objects in the sky (even the moon can be used for this)and thats it!! This worked...
Published on 18 Oct 2009 by Mr. C. J. Hatfield

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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great telescope, but not perfect
This is a great telescope, with the 'goto', meaning that you can select from a large list of objects in the sky that you want to view and the telescope will turn to point at it. But that's assuming that you can get it aligned in the first place. The first one I had would not align, something wrong with the handset, so I sent it back and received another one. This one I...
Published 22 months ago by R. J. Beed


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159 of 161 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celestron Nexstar 130SLT, 18 Oct 2009
By 
Mr. C. J. Hatfield "Kraal 55" (Hertfordshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
I recently purchased the Celestron Nexstar 130SLT and I am more than happy with my purchase! The quality of the scope and mount is excellent and the 'go-to SkyALign' mount is a breeze to set up; simply input your local time, date etc.. and aim the 'starpointer' at any three bright stars or objects in the sky (even the moon can be used for this)and thats it!! This worked first time for me and I was using the 'tour' feature within minutes! The on-board computer has thousands of sky objects in its database and is a marvelous feature.
The two lenses that come with the scope are of a good quality especially the 9mm eyepiece. I would however recommend investing at some point in the Celestron eyepiece kit which has several better quality lenses as well as a Barlow x2 and several colour filters and a Moon filter, however the two eyepieces that come included here are more than adequate to start off with.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good starter telescope, 9 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
Apologies for length of this review, but based on 4 months solid use and all we have experienced.

This model was purchased at Christmas as a first telescope for complete novices, largely on the strength of the computer governed motorised Go To function and the good size of the mirror at just over 5 inches. The Go To makes it easier to locate objects, and the size of the mirror means that faint objects well beyond the capacity of the naked eye can be seen. It also provides some basic detail of the the planet Jupiter.

The kit arrives with everything you need bar batteries to power the motors (8 AAs not supplied). No complex assembly of parts is needed. The tripod folds out and a plastic tray for odds and ends sits between the three legs, also providing some bracing of the legs. The motor and telescope support arm has some weight but is easily managed, locating on the top of the tripod and secured by screwing up a large plastic nut by hand under the tripod head. The optical tube assembly, OTA, slides into a place locating a metal bar in a dovetail fixing on the support arm. It is secured by tightening a nut by hand, though the OTA needs to be cupped in the arms underneath to lift it fully in place to get the nut tight enough to take out slack and make the connection solid, which is essential. Not the best of design but it works ok with some patience. Once fixed you probably won't have to undo it again. The direction finder slides into a dovetail on the OTA. This is a good design. It contains no lenses. A red LED (not laser so safe to look at) shines against a piece of glass in the finder as a dot with adjustable brightness. The telescope is moved until the red dot is directly over the object of interest. In theory it should then be in the middle of the field of view of the telescope but the finder will more than likely need to be aligned. It is easier to point the telescope during the day at something like a distant chimney, centring the object in the telescope viewfinder by eye and then aligning the finder to match. Two thumb screws shift the pointing direction of the finder left/right and up/down if necessary. In our case there was insufficient travel on the left right adjuster and this required undoing the screws fixing the finder to the OTA with a pozi screwdriver until JUST loose (there are nuts inside the OTA which you don't want to come off and hit the mirror). Then shift the finder. The optics all need to be lined up and should come perfect in the box. They are tested by looking out of focus at any star. You should see perfectly circular haloes. Luckily we did. If not, the telescope needs to be 'collimated', requiring a tool not supplied - see You tube videos.

The eyepiece holder fits in the focuser tube and has an adapter to take 2inch eyepieces (which is useful but unlikely to be needed, most eyepieces and accessories at this level being 1.25 inches in diameter). The focuser is ready assembled and an eyepiece is inserted in the tube and two thumb screws tightened to hold it in place. Primitive but seemingly a universal means of fixing whatever you pay for a telescope. The controller hand set plugs in a clearly marked socket. There is another socket for a mains adapter (not supplied) or a separate rechargeable 12v battery pack, a so called "tank" available for around 55 incorporating a torch. The scope will move up and down by hand but not turn sideways without the motor on so power is an essential. Batteries don't last long so are expensive. We found we had an AC/DC adapter on some other equipment providing 12 volts DC at a sufficient max current (2amps is fine) and we used that with an extension lead in the garden. You soon realise though that you need to fork out for the portable battery tank for practical and safety reasons.

The big selling point of the scope is the Go To function and there are a number of options for using this. The general approach is to point the telescope at a star or stars (planets can also be used), using the motor to move the scope to another star. The more names of stars you know the quicker it all is but if you know none at all it's fine. The telescope needs to be pointed at three objects in succession reasonably well spaced in the sky and at different altitudes. The computer should then work out how it is aligned and then will go automatically to any of the objects in its database just by selecting them on the handset. We got this alignment to work on the second attempt but it is not foolproof. You need to enter the time on the handset accurate to the second preferably before you start. It is rather annoying that the handset does not have a clock built in so this needs to be done every time the scope is switched on. You also need to enter your latitude and longitude but getting this spot on is not so essential. You can also use the pre programmed locations in the handset though there are only four or five for the UK. In our case London is good enough though we are 25 miles from the centre. But it is simple enough to put your post code in the internet or consult a sat nav to get the
required figures accurately. It only needs to be done once and the handset retains the info. The scope will also track objects once set up so they are kept in the field of view with little adjustment using the hand set.

So on to using the scope! What do you see. Forget the Hubble telescope pictures. Using the supplied 9 mm eyepiece (72times magnification) you will be easily able to see four moons of Jupiter as dots, and on a good viewing day, two weather bands as stripes on the surface of the planet showing as a small disk. It is possible to see galaxies as white smudges, very hard to find without the Go To so it comes into its own. The bigger star clusters and nebulae are the forte of this telescope and one can spend ages staring at them. The moon craters will have you going "wow" too.

Two issues are relevant. One. The supplied eyepieces are very budget and while it is not essential it seems pointless to buy a telescope at this price and optical quality and not use its full potential. In other words be prepared to spend another 100 or more to get some good eyepieces. You can pay over 500 each ! but we chose the Celestron x-cel lx at around 65 each, which we find are very good, being brighter with better contrast and giving a much wider field of view that makes viewing far less tiring not having to squint. These lenses give real wow moments when you first view say the nebula in Orion M42 (dial it up in the handset to get there) or the Pleiades. Two. The focuser has to be the worst piece of engineering ever, hence four stars and if it was a separate item two stars. Shame on Celestron. The tube with the eyepiece moves on a gear rack to focus and has enormous play. The mechanism is lubricated with very viscous gunk that makes it hard to turn the focusing knob. We find it is best to focus by turning the knob quite quickly from out of focus through focus to out of focus again and then coming half way back to get pin point sharpness. This is undoubtedly an acquired skill but made much harder by the cheap engineering. Some adjustment is possible, not described in the hand book (which is generally useful and in proper english if somehow rather old fashioned - download off the Celestron site to get more insight about using the scope before purchase). Two small set screws sit either side of the focuser locking screw and can be tightened using a small Allen key. This gets rid of most of the play but you have only to use a proper two speed focuser to realise just how poor the one on the 130 is. But don't let this put you off at all. Of course you expect better at the price, but again focusing is an art worth developing as for one thing, touch the focuser and the magnified image in the eyepiece will dance about regardless of how good the focuser is. You can of course easily pay 5000 for a sturdy mount! Make the adjustments to the focuser and take the design limitations as part of the fun.

Thirdly, be prepared that the Go To is generally a bit out due to the gears and motor as well as any errors in setting up. Use the low power 24mm eyepiece first to check where you are. This may sound frustrating but you rapidly discover that a big part of the fun is hunting the objects and developing the skills to see faint things.

Can you take photos of what you see. 25 will get you a clamp to fix any holiday snaps point and shoot digital camera to your eyepiece and it works remarkably well though. Use the self timer to avoid shake when you press the shutter button. Fiddly to set up but download free software like GIMP (free photoshop equivalent) to bring up the levels and what looks like three white dots turns into a nebula. We also bought a very modest CMOS webcam and using the supplied software produced a very detailed photo of Jupiter including red spot after half a dozen attempts and observing sessions in the back garden. If you have a DSLR you can take off the lens and connect to the telescope using connectors for around 20 and take some remarkable long exposure shots, though you are limited by the mount that results in objects turning in the field of view due to the rotation of the earth. (An equatorial mount is needed and the 130 slt cannot be easily adapted).

In conclusion, use the vast resources of the internet to find out what to see each month. You Tube videos are a really useful source of information and expertise not least on astro photography. We were able to see the supernova that had emerged the previous week in M82 and which is gone in a few more weeks. These happen at a rate of about once every thirty years per galaxy so you can be party to some special events with this equipment. This telescope isn't the best of course and it could be better. But it has excellent optics and the ability to put you in awe of the universe. Prepare to spend more money to maximise the initial investment. Observing as a family is great fun - let me have a look, let me have a look! This telescope is recognised as a very good one and no one would think you had wasted your money on it. If you decide to join a club first and see whether you get the bug, if you did, almost certainly you would end up saving up and paying two or three times the cost of this kit, but in the end it might be cheaper. Highly recommended, strangely as much for the flaws which add a challenge, as for the good.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great telescope, but not perfect, 8 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
This is a great telescope, with the 'goto', meaning that you can select from a large list of objects in the sky that you want to view and the telescope will turn to point at it. But that's assuming that you can get it aligned in the first place. The first one I had would not align, something wrong with the handset, so I sent it back and received another one. This one I was able to align first time... but it's a bit hit and miss. Sometimes I go out in the garden and I try a few times to align it without success, so I give up and put it away. Alignment takes a good 5 minutes each time to slew accross the sky and select 3 random stars (or planets) in different sections of the sky, before you can get it to try and 'align'.

Once aligned, it is a breeze, although I often find that it does not exactly align (slightly off centre, then gradually drifting).
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hello universe!, 2 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
I've had this telescope for over a month now it's a really impressive product. The go-to feature makes finding things in the sky a breeze but what I love is it keeps what you are looking at centred in the eyepiece, the mount countering the Earths spin. The only complaint I would make is that the focussing mount rocks as it is raised and lowered so it takes it out of collimation, you have to push against the mount after turning the focus wheel. It's an inconvenience but overall this is great telescope.

It has a maximum magnification of 250 and with a 6mm and x2 Barlow you can get close to that. Out of the planets I've only really had a chance to look at Jupiter but the bands on its surface were clearly visible. Using it to look at the Moon reveals craters within craters as you can get in really close. I love this telescope and it has really expanded what I can see. Read my experiences with it here: InTheGutterStaringAtTheStars.wordpress.com
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Successful Christmas Present, 26 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
My husband chose this telescope after many months of deliberation and he is very happy with it - although it's taken a bit of time to set up - and of course you have to have the usual "add ons" like a moon filter and a night torch - then come the extra lenses - etc. etc. it would have been nice if you got a bit more of a friendly book when it came to the setting up - what it said wasn't wwhat the handset actually said - but we might have worked it out now !!! Very good product and excellent service as always from Amazon.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars doesnt work out of the box, 13 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
We bought this telescope as a present for our son, when he set it up first time it had an error message on the sceen and wouldnt work.
I contacted Celestron direct and they emailed back saying it needed a software update that was available on their website but I would have to purchase a lead & adaptor to download it! They said that if I returned it to amazon to get a replacement the same problem could also exist on the replacement.The fault isnt with Amazon, but I didnt think I would have to spend an additional 35.00 to get the telescope up and running
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 15 July 2014
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
Delighted with my purchase. Good value and speedy delivery. Would recommend
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great First Scope!, 17 May 2014
This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
Bought this scope second hand, was able to align it on the first night no problem, you can download the manual and print it off online, most important thing when setting up the scope is that it's level, there is a level underneath the fork arm a small bubble built onto the mount thats really handy, second most important thing, align the finders scope with the telescope, i aligned with the moon had the centre of the red dot finder in the middle and had the moon in the middle of the eyepiece, you can do this during the day also once the object is far enough away, also before i went out with my telescope i had to collimate it, it was out about 1/2 inch when i bought it, i done alot of reading and watching you tube video's before buying and was after buying a collimation tool aswell, very easy to do after watching a guy on you tube doing it on this very same telescope it took me at most 10 minutes and is very important for veiwing, once aligned i seen Saturn and it's rings and two moons and also Jupiter and 4 moons, although i could'nt really see any colour on Jupiter it was very bright im gonna use a barlow lens and a filter the next time, veiw's of the moon were fantastic with a filter and this was outside my apartment with alot of light pollution, i was impressed, really looking forward to going camping with this scope!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Solid scope, 5 May 2014
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
Product came very well packed (Box in a Box in a Box!!)

Out of the ample packaging, instructions are pretty straight forward. Didn't have to collimate the scope which was a plus so it was a case of assemble and off we go.

Supplied eyepieces are okay though you will want to invest in some decent ones (along with a barlow lense).

"Goto" function is easy to use so long as you "READ THE INSTRUCTIONS" before trying.

Viewing wise, Images are crisp and clear and the "Goto" has no problem aligning to what you select from the handset. I've only used it a few times though as finding your way around the night sky without help is part of the fun.

Only downsides so far:

1. Scope mounting to the Tripod is horrendous - parts are injection moulded and someone obviously didn't check to see if they were a nice tight fit! You have to physically push your whole body against the Scope before tightening the Holding screw up! If you don't, the whole thing vibrates at the minutest knock!
Took quite a few goes to get it sat in nice and snug (will speak to the engineers I work with and get a plate made up to remedy this)

2. Power consumption of the Motors & "Goto" is ridiculous! 8 x batteries lasted only an hour which in todays day & age is pretty appalling! And there is little info to go on as the what mains adaptor (and output requirement) is needed along with the suitable size adaptor pin.
If you're not electrically minded, this will cause you a lot of problems - last thing you want to do is use an adaptor that fries the handset and motors!

Why they couldn't supply a mains adaptor is any-ones guess!!

For using in the back garden, using the mains won't be an issue. If you go mobile though, you will need to invest in a decent power pack which will set you back another 80+

3. No supplied cables for linking up to your PC or Laptop - Again, this is pretty poor and could cause problems for those not technically minded.

4. Handset doesn't has a memory backup either so every time it's switched off, date, time, location settings are all wiped and you have to mess about inputting them every time!

Overall though, I'm happy with the Scope - If it wasn't for the downsides, it would get the full 5 star

Due to the few niggling issues, I would rate this more of intermediate than a beginners Scope.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Celestron Nexstar 130 SLT, 5 April 2014
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This review is from: Celestron 31145 NexStar 130 SLT Series Newtonian Reflector Telescope (Electronics)
I bought this telescope a couple of weeks ago, it arrived before expected and was in very good condition. It is very simple and easy to set up requiring no tools but perhaps a friend to help. Once set up, as soon as it was dark enough I went outside to try it out, I aligned it with ease and it was very accurate, I first targetted Jupiter and I saw very good detail ( the lines running through it and the moons, also a glimpse of the red storm). This was with some of my own lenses, you may not get such detail with the lenses provided.
Everything works well and the alignment has only failed once or twice, it doesnt use up to many batteries if they are descent quality you can also connect it to the mains but you need to buy a cable as one is not provided. I had heard that the mirror was often scratched or dusty, mine has no such problems and is still remarkably clean. Over all a very good telescope and i would definatley recommend it.
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