iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount

iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount

iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount

B&H # IO7200 MFR # 7200
iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount

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Product Highlights

  • Motorized and Computer-Guided EQ Mount
  • Center-Mounted Design with 60 lb Payload
  • Periodic Error of ± 5 Arc Sec
  • Motor Accuracy: 0.06 Arcsecond
  • Nine Slew Speeds up to 3.75°/sec
  • Go2Nova 8407+ Hand Controller
  • Built-in 32-Channel GPS Receiver
  • AccuAligning Illuminated Polar Scope
  • 8" Losmandy/Vixen-Style Dual Saddle
  • Cut-Foam Padded Hard Carrying Case
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  • 1Description

The CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount from iOptron features an innovative weight distribution design coupled with precise extended tracking capabilities to create a mount ideally suited for astrophotography or long-term observation. Its center-balanced design puts the optical tube weight directly over the mount's center of gravity which gives it better stability and a greater payload capacity over other EQ mounts. Additionally, the counterbalance shaft length is adjustable to keep it from interfering with whatever pier or tripod is being used.

The drive has a peak-to-peak error of ±5 arc second, but the Go2Nova hand controller is equipped with periodic error correction (PEC) capabilities that allow you to train out the errors. This precision error correction allows for long-exposure astrophotography or other layering techniques that require shorter exposures with filter or other accessory changes. In addition to astroimaging, the extended tracking accuracy makes long term observation of specific objects or areas of interest easier.

For set-up and alignment, the CEM60 comes with the AccuAligning Illuminated Polar Scope. The mount is designed so that the declination shaft doesn't block the AccuAligning scope, which makes it accessible at all times for checking or correcting the polar alignment. A built-in 32-channel GPS receiver sends information such as location and local time to the Go2Nova controller for faster and easier set-up.

Included with the mount is the Go2Nova 8407+ controller. This handheld computer guider has a database of over 349,000 objects and is flash updateable from the iOptron website with firmware updates that increase its accuracy and adds celestial objects. The database includes the planets, galaxies, star clusters, quasars, and nebulae; as well as seven astronomical catalogs including Messier and NGC IC. It also has stars, comets, asteroids, constellations, and can store up to 60 user-defined objects to easily find and go-to their favorite objects. The mount has nine slew speeds up to 3.75°/second and can be manually controlled for quick observations.

A hard carrying case with die-cut custom-fit foam comes with the mount and is designed to hold and protect it during transport or storage.

Mount
  • Motorized and computer-guided equatorial mount with 60lb payload capacity
  • Innovative design puts the payload weight on the mount's center of gravity for greater stability and better counter-balancing
  • Non-contact magnetically loaded gear meshing system
  • Precise azimuth adjustment dials
  • 8" Losmandy/Vixen dual saddle accepts any compatible OTA up to 60 lb
  • AccuAligning polar scope with dark-field illumination for polar alignment
  • Declination shaft doesn't obstruct alignment scope for faster and easier Polar alignment
  • Gear switches on both R.A. and DEC axes for fast movement
  • Built-in 32-channel GPS receiver communicates information to the Go2Nova controller
Motors and Gears
  • Precision stepper motors with 0.06 arcsecond accuracy for precise GoTo capability and accurate tracking
  • 146mm, 288 tooth aluminum R.A. and Declination worm wheels
  • Screw/worm type latitude adjuster for precision adjustments
  • Vise-type latitude bearing locks system for solid positioning
  • Permanent Periodic Error Correction (PPEC) removes inaccuracies inherent in gears and allows for more accurate tracking, especially for long-exposure astrophotography
  • Peak-to-peak periodic error of ±5 arcsec
  • Nine slew speeds: 1x, 2x, 8x, 16x, 64x, 128x, 256x, 512x, Max (3.75°/sec)
  • Slew speed and direction controlled via Go2Nova controller
  • 110-240 VAC power adapter included
Instrument Panel and Input Panel
Instrument Panel:
  • Two 12 VDC power outlets for powering the CCD camera or electric focuser
  • Four USB 2.0 port with Type A connector for connecting to accessories
  • 6P6C port which can be used to bridge the guiding port or accessories with a 6P6C/6P4C plug
  • The USB hub is non-powered, and will draw power from a source, such a computer USB port
  • The ports on the instrument panel are connected to the input panel located next to the polar scope
Input Panel:
  • One 12 VDC power input, 5 A max
  • One USB 2.0 port with Type B connector
  • One 6P6C port

 

Counterweight and Shaft
  • Adjustable counterweight shaft reduces or eliminates interference with tripod or other equipment
  • 1.1x17.7" (28x450mm) stainless steel counterweight shaft
  • Included 21lb (9.5 kg) counterweight
Go2Nova 8407+ Hand Controller
  • 358,000 object database
  • User-friendly menu driven interface
  • 9-speed slew control with quiet mode
  • Database includes stars, constellations, and seven complete astronomical catalogs including Messier and NCG IC
  • Up to 60 user-defined objects to easily find your favorites
  • Enter specific R.A. and Declination coordinates of objects for immediate GoTo
  • 8 line, 21 character/line, red-light backlit LCD screen
  • One-star, multi-star, polar and SolarSys alignments
  • Periodic Error Correction (PEC) function reduces or eliminates R.A. tracking errors for long-exposure astrophotography
  • Programmable anti-backlash adjustment for smoother tracking
  • Updateable firmware through built-in serial port
  • Computer control with planetarium software
  • Integrated ST-4 autoguiding port
  • Built-in heater for larger operating temperature range
In the Box
iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount
  • AccuAligning Polar Scope
  • Go2Nova 8407 Hand Controller
  • 21 lb (9.5 kg) Counterweight
  • Stainless Steel Counterweight Shaft
  • Power Adapter
  • Hard Aluminum Carrying Case
  • Limited Two-Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description
    Mount Type Equatorial
    Load Capacity 60 lb (27.2 kg), excluding counterweight
    Mount 8" Losmandy/Vixen dual saddle
    Motor Precision stepper motor
    0.06 arcsec accuracy
    Right Ascension Worm Wheel 146mm, 288 tooth aluminum
    Declination Worm Wheel 146mm, 288 tooth aluminum
    GPS Internal 32-channel GPS receiver
    GO-TO Capability Go2Nova 8407+ hand controller
    Altitude / Latitude Adjustment Altitude: ±8°
    Latitude: 0 to 70°
    Polar Axis Scope AccuAligning dark field illuminated
    Includes Tripod/Pier No
    Power Source 12 VDC, 2 A
    100 to 240 VAC, adapter included
    Consumption: 0.6 A (when tracking), 1.1 A (in GoTo mode)
    Operational Temperature -4 to 113°F (-20 to 45°C)
    Mount Size Base: 5.9" (15 cm)
    Weight 27 lb (12.3 kg)
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 68.6 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 25.2 x 18.0 x 9.5"
    CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount is rated 3.0 out of 5 by 2.
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from You must understand what your doing I have had this mount for quite sometime. The mount tracks very well and can hold good round stars in an image for about 45 sec or so which I found to be very good. And will hold a star for a very long time with a guide scope. I have had images taken out to 30 sec without issue. It has a good polar scope very easy to use but for the best images you will need to know how to drift align for the best outcome, not only with this mount but any mount. Over all the mount is very good value for the money , there is better but at a much higher price. If you are looking to get into astrophotography with a larger scope its hard to go passed. But saying that astrophotography is an advanced hobby that takes time. This is a great place to start
    Date published: 2015-10-24
    Rated 2 out of 5 by from Good for visual flawed for imaging The CEM60 no doubt has some good attributes, it is lightweight, has a strong payload capacity, very quiet slewing, and a simple user friendly HC interface. The GOTO and tracking for visual works well if you accept its limitations. If you use the one, two, or three star alignment you will have to frequently sync to stars in the area you are observing or else it will not put objects in the center of the FOV. Whenever you flip the meridian the GOTOs will be way off and re-synching will be necessary. The unit I got had a misaligned polar scope it had to be readjusted in the daytime to be centered with the RA axis. Once that was done the pointing errors improved a little but they are still there. The Polaris position shown in the hand controller is not consistent with the position shown in the Polar Finder apps. The model errors displayed are also not consistent. The zero position is also frequently off and needs re-calibrated and the counterweight bar is not in alignment with the zero position. The finish is also very shoddy the paint flecks off easily from the counterweights and the mount. Tracking for astrophotography has been consistently bad. No matter where I try to image in the night sky there is significant tracking errors in the declination axis. Even when polar alignment is well refined down to 0.5' per axis and PEC trained the error is still there. The tracking erros show up in exposures as short as 60 seconds unguided! When using a guide scope & PHD there is little improvement the frequent errors cannot be corrected. Despite careful attention paid to level, balance, and alignment the accuracy promised by iOptron isn't there and imaging is not doable except with short focal length refractors or camera lenses. iOptron tech support is not helpful they simply restate doing the procedures that I have already performed. After 6 months of constant troubleshooting I have exhausted all means to make it work correctly. This is a fairly new design, obviously not finely tuned and bug free, and needs more work. If you're looking to do serious astrophotography I'd look at the similar priced Celestron & Orion mounts instead.
    Date published: 2015-10-08
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