Celestron NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope

Celestron NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope

Celestron NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope

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Product Highlights

  • 150mm Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope
  • 2032mm Focal Length, f/10 Focal Ratio
  • StarBright XLT Optical Coating System
  • Single-Fork Motorized GoTo Alt-Az Mount
  • 25mm Eyepiece and StarPointer Finder
  • SkyAlign Alignment Technology
  • NexStar+ Computer Hand Controller
  • 40,000+ Object Database with Sky Tours
  • Stainless Steel Tripod
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Celestron 8SE overview

  • 1Description

Representing the largest aperture in the series and drawing in more light to see deeper into space than smaller versions, Celestron's NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope is a powerful yet portable scope that can be used for observing everything from the Moon and planets to deep-sky objects like stars, galaxies and nebulae, while maintaining the user-friendly interface of the SE series. Using Celestron's proprietary StarBright XLT multi-coating system, light transmission is increased throughout the entire optical path with anti-reflection multi-coated lenses, highly reflective multi-coated mirrors, and crown optical glass elements. While the focal ratio is a relatively slow f/10, the mount's precision tracking system allows it to be a competent shorter-exposure astrophotography imaging platform for the Moon and planets.

Driving the dual servo motors on the mount is the brain of the NexStar 8SE: the iconic NexStar+ computer hand controller. Packed with 40,000+ celestial objects, it can hold up to 100 additional user-defined destinations and is updatable via the Celestron website. It has multiple alignment procedures to get you observing fast, including the super-easy SkyAlign system. Capable of being used in the northern or southern Hemispheres, the NexStar has sidereal, lunar, and solar tracking speeds to accurately follow near- and deep-sky objects, plus nine slew speeds and the ability to automatically trigger a camera's shutter release for Fastar or piggyback wide-field photography or conventional prime-focus astrophotography.

  • 8" (203.2mm) aperture
  • f/10 focal ratio
  • 2032mm focal length
  • Crown optical glass primary mirror
  • StarBright XLT optical coatings: Multi-layer aluminum/SiO2 (quartz)/TiO2 (titanium dioxide) mirror coatings with flat reflectivity across the light spectrum for both astrophotography/astroimaging and visual observation
  • Multi-layer MgF2 (magnesium fluoride) and HfO2 (hafnium dioxide) anti-reflective lens coatings
  • High-transmission water white glass corrector lens with 97.4% light transmission
  • Internal focusing mechanism
  • Resolution: 0.69 arcsec (Rayleigh); 0.57 arcsec (Dawes)
  • Secondary mirror obstruction: 2.5"; 31% by diameter; 9.77% by area
  • Fastar capability: Secondary mirror can be removed and a DSLR or imaging rig mounted in its place for fast wide-field astrophotography
NexStar+ Computer Controller
  • 2-line, 16-character LCD display
  • 19 fiber optic backlit red LED buttons
  • Database of over 40,000 celestial objects plus 100 user defined
  • Automatically slew to planets, stars, constellations, and a variety of catalogs
  • Camera control: For piggyback wide-field or conventional astrophotography through the optical tube assembly, the controller can automatically trigger the shutter release to capture the image
  • Anti-backlash compensation programs out play between gears for more precise tracking
  • Tour Mode: Shows a selection of the most popular objects for the time and date you are observing
  • Constellation Tour: Allows you to take a tour of all the best objects within a particular constellation
  • Alignment procedures: SkyAlign, Auto 2-Star, 1-Star, 2-Star, and Solar System
  • SkyAlign alignment: Takes minutes, with minimal effort or experiencepoint the telescope at three bright objects in the sky, and the telescope does the rest
  • Nine slew speeds: 5°/sec, 3°/sec, 1°/sec, 2x, 4x, 8x, 16x, 32x, and 64x
  • Sidereal, Solar, and Lunar tracking rates for observing the fast-moving Moon, to slower-moving deep-space subjects
  • Tracking modes: Alt-Az, EQ North, EQ South, Off (no tracking when using as a terrestrial spotting scope)
  • RS-232 communication port allows for computer control
  • Flash updatable via the Celestron website
Database Details:
  • Solar system objects including the Sun, Moon, and planets
  • Named objects
  • Stars: Asterims, variable stars, double stars, named stars
  • Caldwell catalog
  • Messier catalog
  • NGC catalog
  • SAO catalog
  • Constellations
Mount & Tripod
  • Single-fork alt-az
  • Dual-axis servo motors allow for precise tracking with virtually no vibration
  • Motor resolution: 0.26 arcsec
  • Optical encoders track mount movement to improve tracking and GoTo accuracy while allowing the mount to maintain alignment when moved manually
  • Communication ports: Autoguider port, Aux port, hand controller
  • Runs on eight user-supplied AA batteries or optional 12 VDC power supply
  • Stainless steel legs
  • Adjustable height accommodates a variety of observation positions or users
  • Tray holds accessories such as eyepieces and filters and adds stability and vibration reduction
  • Weight: 10 pounds
Included Accessories
  • 1.25"-diameter barrel
  • 25mm focal length produces 81x magnification
  • Anti-reflection multi-coated glass improves color rendition and contrast
  • Threaded barrel accepts most 1.25" astronomical filters
  • Fold-down rubber eyecup for use with or without eyeglasses
  • 33' field of view at 1000 yards
  • 1.25" input and output accepts most 1.25" astronomical eyepieces and accessories
  • 90° angle puts head in a comfortable position when observing at or near the zenith
  • Corrects view horizontally, but not vertically
StarPointer Finder:
  • Projects a single red dot in line of sight
  • Unmagnified view ensures a wide field of view to make finding objects faster and star-hopping navigation easier


UPC: 050234110693
In the Box
Celestron NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope
  • StarPointer Finderscope
  • The Sky CD-ROM Software for Windows
  • NexRemote Control Software CD
  • 25mm Eyepiece
  • 90° Star Diagonal
  • Tripod with Accessory Tray
  • Limited 2-Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Celestron 8SE specs

    Optical Tube Assembly
    Optical Design Schmidt Cassegrain
    Aperture 203 mm / 8"
    Focal Length 2032 mm
    Focal Ratio f/10
    Eyepiece Barrel Diameter 1.25"
    Diagonal Yes, 90 Star
    Finderscope Yes
    Optical Tube Dimensions Length: 17" / 43.2 cm
    Type Motorized; Alt-Azimuth Single Fork
    GoTo Capability Yes, NexStar
    Type Adjustable
    Material of Tripod Stainless Steel
    Batteries 8 x AA
    Weight 10.0 lb / 4.5 kg (Tripod)
    33.0 lb / 15.0 kg (Fully Assembled)
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 47.4 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 42.0 x 24.0 x 13.0"

    Celestron 8SE reviews

    NexStar 8SE 203mm f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain GoTo Telescope is rated 4.4 out of 5 by 31.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Serious Aperture Meets Portability I have been involved in astronomy for some 30 years and have found if you want a nice aperture scope you usually sacrifice portability. Not so with the Nexstar 8 SE. The entire three piece setup - OTA, Forkarm,and Tripod- weighs only 33 pounds when assembled. Not only is it quick and easy to set up you are also treated to Celestron's legendary optics - second to none. The Go-To feature is awesome - you can now spend your evening viewing Deep Sky objects instead of searching for them! Also, I really like the retro orange finish on the OTA Celestron is now using - like their original scopes from the '80's that I remember.
    Date published: 2011-05-20
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from 8SE - Excellent Scope After reading hundreds of reviews, the scope performs exactly as advertised. It is easy to set-up and use. My first alignment was ok, but the learning curve was small and my 2nd and later alignments were right on. I can now share the skies with my daughter without waiting minutes (or longer) between views. The drawbacks are well documented but easy to workaround. The mount is a little shaky so a good foundation is required and when focusing at high power there is vibration that requires you to wait a bit. Overall an excellent scope for the price.
    Date published: 2012-06-22
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from No hesitation required! Easy setup, clear directions, crystal optics and precision computer operation make this scope a no-brainer for both newcomers and seasoned amature astronomers. It is relatively easy to align if you're careful to level your tripod and you choose alignment objects according to the directions. This system is great for entertaining/educating your family and the entire neighborhood! The go-to system along with object-specific information given in the NexStar+ hand control instantly make you an amature astronomer genius! Do not hesitate to buy this product.
    Date published: 2013-06-13
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful Observational Telescope! As expected from Celestron, the OTA (optical tube assembly) is top-notch for this price range. Collimation was perfect when it arrived, and the closed and compact Schmidt-Cassegrain design requires little maintenance. The 8' aperture provides a lot of light gathering power, and (as the old adage says) there's no substitute for aperture. Fainter objects show up well, especially in dark skies. Planetary views are sharp and show lots of detail. The focus control is firm but smooth. The included lens cap fits/locks well and protects your collector plate from dust during storage and transport. The included Celestron Star Pointer Finderscope does it's job well, but the all-plastic design does feel cheap. Easy to upgrade though if you so choose.I highly recommend investing in some higher quality eyepieces. Beginners often forget that EP's are part of the optical system as well, so investing in quality EP's are essential for exceptional visual observations. Televue offers some of the best EP's out there, but they are also incredibly expensive. I use Celestron's X-CEL LX series EP's which are wonderful EP's and they are much more affordable ($- each). Celestron's Zoom EP is also a great value for someone looking to expand their EP variety with minimal cost. Be careful not to buy/use EP's that push your telescope beyond its magnification limit. With the 8SE, I wouldn't try anything smaller than a 5mm EP.Celestron's Nexstar mount is a single-fork (AltAz), computerized Go-To mount. Go-To functionality is a wonderful thing, but it is dependent on two things: steady power supply and proper alignment. The Nexstar mount will eat batteries alive and tracking will get less and less accurate as the batteries begin to drain. An AC power adapter and.or Celestron's PowerTank both solve this problem very nicely (see separate reviews). The Nexstar mount offers several alignment methods, but the standard SkyAlign method works best for me. Using the instructions in the manual, you should be able to get a decent alignment the first time out; however, you may have to adjust a little to bring the desired object into view. I'm still learning and practicing, but my alignment does get better every time. Accurate tracking also depends on a perfect alignment, so I'm still having to make occasional adjustments when tracking an object for longer periods. I feel confident though that I will perfect this soon. Plenty of others seem to have mastered it according to the online forums that I read. (By the way, read forums. There is a wealth of first-hand knowledge out there that is invaluable to beginners, and I have found that most amateur and professional astronomers are more than happy to help answer your questions.) The Nexstar is a single-arm Alt-Az mount, so the scope will vibrate heavily when you touch it. This can make focusing more difficult, especially at higher powers where the sweet spot is incredibly small. I recommend using Celestron's vibration suppression pads (great value) under each tripod leg, and only extend your tripod legs as far as you have to. If you really want to stop the wiggling, invest in a motorized focuser. I use JMI Telescope's MotoFocus.The Nexstar 8SE is a wonderful observational telescope and is a great value. It even works for solar-system astrophotography with a CCD camera or DSLR. I use Celestron's NexImage 5. However, if you're interested in photographing deep space objects (DSOs) which require longer exposure times, the Nexstar mount is not for you. Good as it may be, the Nexstar mount is just not accurate enough for exposure times greater than say, 30 seconds. Don't be fooled by the auto-guide port on the mount either. Even with an expensive auto-guiding system, the single-fork AltAz design will not be steady enough. This is largely due to gear backlash that is characteristic of all intermediate AltAz mounts. If you want to do DSO imaging, you need an equatorial mount, like Celestron's VX or CGEM mounts. Check out the Celestron Advanced VX 8'. It's only a little more expensive than this setup. If you are a beginner though, I strongly recommend holding off an long-exposure astrophotography for a while. Despite its many rewards, it is a frustrating and expensive hobby. For observational viewing though, the Nexstar 8SE is an amazing piece of equipment for the beginner or intermediate amateur astronomer. Your friends and family will be impressed with the views for many years to come!Clear skies!
    Date published: 2015-02-12
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from I would buy this product again Before deciding on the type, model and brand of telescope to buy, I researched a lot, I sought information from several people who know the world of telescopes and astronomy. The research result was the Celestron NexStar 8 SE. After three months of use, I concluded that I did a great deal I am very pleased with all the features of this telescope Thanks to everyone who helped me
    Date published: 2013-11-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Ultimate starter telescope (1) Thiswas my 3rd scope in 18 months. I quickly got tired of the 90mm scope and after 4 months bought the Celestron 127SLT. Loved that scope but after one year had to get the Celestron 8SE. This is my last scope for a long time, maybe ever. This is about as big as you can go and still easily transport your telescope to other locations. Since my backyard kind of sucks, I definitely won't be going bigger. I wish this had been my first scope. (2) I love the GoTo function. The old heads love to say you need to learn the constellations and read a star chart, but after almost 3 years in this hobby, I stillhave no desire or feel any need. With GoTo I can cover somuch in one night, and my guests are non-stop entertained. I'm learning about the universe anyway, but I just don't feel like wasting time finding objects. I just want tosee them and learn about them. (3) Withan inexpensive bracket system enabling me to use afocal photography, I've been able to get decent deep space and planetary photos using my digital point and shoot camera. I use the Auto mode on the planets, andmy camera's max15 second timer on deep space objects. I'm told this telescope's mount can do about 30 seconds max. I recommend you getCelestron'spower tank, and an adjustable star chair for viewer comfort. This telescope can keep you entertained for years to come.
    Date published: 2016-12-21
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Delivered to Sydney in a week Great scope still working out some of its capabilities, I bought the small lenz kit with it very useful filters. Got hit with $213 GST and duty upon landing. Still heaps cheaper than buying in OZ Glen
    Date published: 2012-07-30
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Generally good Very good optical quality, nice tripod, easy to use alignment system, and nice goto capability. The only real issue for me is the sturdiness of the fork mount with a 8 SCT. It is not stiff enough and any significant wind messes up the view. It is also difficult to focus because of the blurring. The eyepiece that it comes with is low quality.
    Date published: 2010-09-02
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