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207 of 211 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celestron Nexstar 8 SE
This is my first telescope and I knew very few constellations or stars in the sky. I have been using this scope for about 6 months and love it.

THE GOOD BITS
1. The set up was very easy and straightforward.
2. The instruction manual is excellent with lots of pics to show you how to set it up.
3. The GOTO computer is very good. I always use the 2...
Published on 8 Sep 2010 by Tig

versus
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cle
Good quality gear BUT..........We have had it for 2 weeks and the first time we tried to set up the head the computer froze. We are told we dont have the latest software and we had to send it away to be fixed. We had to take it to our local post office at our own expense to have it fixed. VERY poor service and before despatching this type of equipment I would have thought...
Published 19 months ago by Mr Colin Twiss


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207 of 211 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celestron Nexstar 8 SE, 8 Sep 2010
This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
This is my first telescope and I knew very few constellations or stars in the sky. I have been using this scope for about 6 months and love it.

THE GOOD BITS
1. The set up was very easy and straightforward.
2. The instruction manual is excellent with lots of pics to show you how to set it up.
3. The GOTO computer is very good. I always use the 2 star method now, but you do need to know the names of a few of the brigthest stars.
4. Once you have the scope up and working, just decide what you want to look at and the GOTO will go to. However, a word of warning, for the goto to work very well, you must align your guide stars accuratly and your tripod must be level. Use a low magnification eyepiece first, centre the object and then use higher power eyepieces.
5. The tarcking is very good and can be improved by using the sync setting, which precisly locks on to your target and will hold it in teh centre of the eyepiece for at least 20 mins (plenty of time to make a hot cup of tea)
6. Portability - This was the clincher for me. You can carry the whole caboodle (scope and tripod) preassembled very easily. This means that your set up time is a matter of minutes and you will use the scope all the time.
7. Image quality - I am still blown away by the clarity of the objects. I live in a heavily light polluted area but it doeas not seem to affect the DSO or planets.
8. Eyepiece tray - might appear to be minor and trivial, but saves you groping around in the dark and squidging your eyepieces into the mud.
9. NO maintenence - lots of people talk about collumation - so long as teh scope is set up correctly at the manufacturers and you treat it very gently, then it will not need adjustment

THE BAD BITS
1. Vibration when focusing - because the scope is only mounted on one fork, the object can wobble about a bit when you are fine focusing at high magnification. Not a major prob, just be aware of it
2. Wind - No not that sort! the object does wobble a bit at high mags in te wind (single fork issue again). Not a big prob you either put the scope in a less windy part of the garden or use lower power eyepieces
3. Dew - BIG PROB with SCT's, but easily overcome by use of a heated dew shield. There is one available on teh internet specifically for the 8 and it works very well. It will give you about an extra 1 - 1.5 hrs of viewing time per night.

EXTRA BITS TO BUY
1. Heated dew shield - a must have
2. Set of good quality eyepieces (I have Meade 4000 series and they are good) - a must have
3. Variable moon filter (Because the scope is so good, the moon is too bright to look at without hurting your eyes) Oh Jupiter can be seen at teh moment and again the Variable filter is a great help - a must have
4. Nebula filter - Excellent if DSOs are your thing - Useful but not essencial
5. DO NOT BUY a light pollution filter they are rubbish!!!

CONCLUSION
A great scope with a few minor limitations. Buy it, you will not be sorry. This was my first scope and I found it very easy to use. Do not listen to all the gibberish about starting with a small scope and working up to an 8. Get it and use it, its easy peesy
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73 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it., 4 Oct 2011
This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I live just outside of London, which is an orange zone. I can only barely make out the Milky Way on a good night and there is an almost palpable orange glow in the sky at all times.

I took the NexStar 8SE out a couple of nights ago. It went like this:
- M57 - The Ring Nebula. Only just visible in my finder, but it instantly jumped at my face when I switched to the main scope. Even with direct vision I could clearly see the oval shape of the ring reaching out to the 13mag star next to it. No hint of color of course, but the structure was clear. A wonderful sight.
- The Double-Double (Epsilon Lyrae). At first I only saw two stars at 24mm, but when I zoomed in to 8mm and carefully refocused, I was able to split each star into two with enough space between them to drive a truck through. Wow! That was a first for me.
- Albeiro. The nearby double star was glorious as usual. I found that viewing it at low magnification and slightly out of focus brought out the profound, highly saturated color contrast between the amber and blue stars best.
- M13 - The Great Cluster in Hercules. This one has long been a favourite and the 8SE instantly resolved it into an explosion of tiny pinpoint stars on top of milky cotton wool. What a stunning sight.
- M27 the Dumbbell. I hadn't ever tried this one yet, but had read about Messier and Herschel barely making out the hourglass shape back in 1764 with large scopes. In the 8SE it quite clearly took a bowtie look, with the southern wing almost extending out to the nearby 11mag star. Breathtaking.
- M101, the Pinwheel Galaxy, another first. The GOTO slewed across the Big Dipper, grunted to a stop, but nothing appeared in the eye piece! I slewed around the area a bit to try to find it, but nothing! Eventually I got out my iPhone Starmap Pro atlas and star hopped to it. I was convinced I had the exact spot in the sky, but still nothing. At mag 7.7, it should be an easy find. Frustrated and tired at 3am, I started packing up and immediately noticed that my objective lens had fogged up completely. No wonder!

I carried the scope back inside and went to bed with a large grin on my face.

So, why do I love the 8SE so much?
1) It's large enough so that all objects in "Turn Left at Orion" look much more glorious than described in the book
2) The GOTO is very precise and reliable. Alignment is quick and painless.
3) Light and small enough to carry in and out of the house without any assembly or disassembly.
4) A damn handsome piece of equipment too!

Admittedly, I don't have a lot of experience with either astronomy or telescopes. My previous scope was my dad's old 4 inch from 1970. I'm sure there are many great scopes out there. But if my objective is to give me a thrill of delight, then the 8SE succeeds with flying colours!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars see the stars, 10 Jan 2014
This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I bought this telescope because it had good reviews and it did not disappoint, its very big and quite heavy, uses a lot of batteries, I purchased a celestron tank to enable me to use the scope anywhere without worrying about batteries running out. I am still learning how to use it but so far I am impressed with the detail of the near planets. I would recommend this telescope
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82 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars About as close to a dream telescope as most people are likely to get, 29 Dec 2010
This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I've been an amateur astronomer for about 18 months and owned this scope for the last year, and I'm absolutely delighted with it. The major factors in this scope's favor are:

- Excellent light gathering for deep sky observations (less than 8 inch aperture is generally considered too small)
- Superb resolution on the moon and planets (0.58 arc seconds, which will get you to 400x magnification but needs outstandingly clear, still skies)
- Easy to use, respectably accurate computer control (you do need to know some stars, and should read the instructions though)
- Exceptional portability (I can carry the entire scope downstairs and into the garden fully assembled)

Things to be aware of when buying are:

- It only comes with one eyepiece, which gives 80x magnification and seems good quality. I strongly recommend using this for at least a month and reading up before buying any more (they are at least as difficult to choose between as telescopes), and advise against the frequently advertised eyepiece sets.
- A power tank is an absolute necessity, unless you intend to buy 8xAA batteries every other week. Search for "7Ah 12V Power tank" on your favorite search engine (Amazon really should sell these as well!)

I'd also recommend you get a copy of "Turn Left at Orion", to give you an idea of what you point it at, and that you join an astronomy society. Other than that, you're ready to go.

Clear skies.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 17 Jun 2012
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This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I have upgraded from an Lcm114 to this and I am very pleased with it, I will be satisfied with it for good, short of winning the lottery!
Heavier than the lcm of course but still portable enough to cope with me and my arthritis at around 33 lbs. as usual bad weather conditions prevent me from using it as much as I would like.
Even my wife was genuinely impressed when I showed her Saturn through it. I was able to set it up quickly because as much as anything else the operating system is the same as the lcm with a couple more bells and whistles which I still have to try out.
Certainly the views are considerably better than with my other scope, so they should be of course it costs a lot more? I suppose £1400 these days isn't in some respects such a huge amount of money but still a lot for what is lets face it a luxury item. Should I have bought the cheaper one first or gone straight in and bought the 8se? Difficult question, if I had decided that astronomy was not for me then it was about £220 to find out instead of spending 4 figures, if you are sure that this is the hobby for you then I would say go for it.
I will be keeping the Lcm114 I think, I am quite attached to it anyway and the handsets are the same, it would just need reprogramming if anything goes wrong. Also because the 8se is more powerfull even with the low power 32mm eyepiece i have certain star groups like The pleides for instance will be difficult to see in their entirety , not in the night sky at the moment so time will tell how much it will now get used, maximum magnification isn't always everything though I feel.
For most amateur astronomers I feel the 8se is all that we will be likely to need. Other reviews here are all pretty positive as well so I don't feel there is too much to add, it does wobble a bit at high magnifications When touched and needs a few seconds to settle. down again, go up again in the celestron pecking order and I notice the scopes are supported by a different type of tripod being held
on both sides, more expensive and heavier, I don't find this a major problem however:-)
A good video I have cme across on you tube is called "deep sky objects with a celestron 8se" type in "deep sky 8se" and you should find it ok. It shows not Hubble quality images but realistic examples of what you WILL see under good conditions of the andromeda galaxy, and other objects.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very good first telescope, 4 July 2012
By 
Patrick Wyman (Harrow, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I had always had an interest in astronomy, and was stimulated to take it further by seeing the rings of Saturn in a telescope demonstrated at Whitby. Then, how much to spend? Patrick Moore said don't spend less than £400. In a way it was rather like buying a boat. It would not be something I would use every day or even every week, I might not continue to use it for the rest of my life, it would take some time to get to know how to use it in a satisfying way. My first choice of equipment might not be the most suitable.

I had always found Amazon a good source of products, and reading the reviews pointed me towards the Celestron Nexstar 8SE. Hearing from a retailer that they flew off the shelves as soon as they came in confirmed that impression. Amazon delivered right away, which the retailer couldn't.

The telescope worked straight away after assembling, though I had to buy 8 AA batteries. The instruction book needs a bit of updating - it alleged that the telescope is delivered pre-assembled, which it wasn't. Fortunately it was fairly obvious. The delivery packaging can be reinforced with Duck tape for use as storage.

The only significant problem I've had was when the hand controller screen froze into the "Transmit Data" mode. The Celestron website advised switching on and off repeatedly, which didn't work, and then said download new software, which was fairly easy and did work.

I think this telescope will suit me for quite a long time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars would highly recommend., 15 July 2014
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This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
Once configured and set for the stars, the solar system is literally your oyster, a gem of a scope, would highly recommend.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great scope, 7 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
Well worth the money.
So glad I bought it.Recommend to anybody who wants to start stargazing.
Just take your time with the setup procedure.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beginner astronomer with a great piece of kit!!!, 15 Feb 2012
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This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
I've always had a keen interest in the skies since I was a little girl...having played around with various cheaper alternatives it has to be said you really do get what you pay for.
Although this telescope doesn't come cheap it really is worth every penny so if you have a genuine love of the night sky and want to see the universe in great detail then this is an investment.
I purchased this around 3 months ago and the only frustrating thing has been cloudy skies. Weather hasn't been too great up north but on the good few occasions it's been clear it has been worth freezing your socks off in the garden to see the beauty of the night sky !
The moon is spectacular through this scope, also Jupiter and it's moons have been exhilarating ! I've also tried to get my children in on this and it's well worth seeing your kids gasp at the sights you can see through this telescope that are clearly invisible to the naked eye.
It's well worth every penny and I'm sure it will last years as this is a sturdy telescope.
In agreement with other reviews the only real slight flaw I can give is the vibration of the tripod at times but it's not a big deal and later down the line there are other tripods that can replace it.
It is worth investing in other products for instance get a good set of eye pieces and I also purchased the skywatcher power pack as batteries are unreliable.
I just hope the overcast skies disappear soon so I can take this out more. After 3 trips to the lakes I found it was a waste of time travelling there as it was so overcast but despite the extra room it takes up in the car, I've decided that this telescope will come with me wherever I go!
Highly recommend this piece of fabulous kit!!!!!
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cle, 23 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope (Electronics)
Good quality gear BUT..........We have had it for 2 weeks and the first time we tried to set up the head the computer froze. We are told we dont have the latest software and we had to send it away to be fixed. We had to take it to our local post office at our own expense to have it fixed. VERY poor service and before despatching this type of equipment I would have thought checks would be made to ensure the software was current. Its like buying a new laptop that still has Windows 98. It is attention to this kind of detail that separates the good suppliers from the mediocre.
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Celestron NexStar 8 SE Computerised Telescope
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