Celestron NexStar 8SE: Comprehensive Guide to Its Benefits and Limitations

The Celestron Nexstar 8SE Telescope is an excellent choice for beginners and experienced astronomers alike. This telescope has all the features you need to explore the night sky and enough power to keep you interested for years. The Celestron Nexstar 8SE telescope review will help you decide if this is the best telescope for your needs.

Key Specifications and Features of the Celestron NexStar 8SE Telescope

Optical DesignSchmidt-Cassegrain
Aperture203.2 mm (8 inches)
Focal Length2032 mm (80 inches)
Focal Ratiof/10
Limiting Magnitude14
Low Useful Magnification29x
High Theoretical Magnification480x
Assembled Weight33 lbs
CoatingStarBright XLT
Mount TypeFully-automated GoTo mount
Celestial Object DatabaseOver 40,000 objects
Alignment TechnologySkyAlign
Assembly and BreakdownEasy, with single fork arm design
Warranty2-year warranty
Customer SupportUnlimited access to US-based experts

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Unlocking the Cosmos: Weighing the Advantages and Disadvantages of the Celestron NexStar 8SE

Pros of the Celestron NexStar 8SE

  • Excellent Optics and Light-Gathering Capability: The NexStar 8SE features an 8-inch aperture Schmidt-Cassegrain optical design with high-quality StarBright XLT coatings, providing excellent light-gathering capability. This lets users observe our Solar System’s best offers, such as Saturn’s rings, Jupiter’s cloud bands, and the Moon’s surface features. The telescope also allows for deep-sky observations, including hundreds of stars in the Hercules Globular Cluster and the spiral arms of the Whirlpool Galaxy.
  • Fully Automated GoTo Mount: With a database of more than 40,000 celestial objects, the GoTo mount built into the NexStar 8SE automatically locates and tracks objects for users, making it ideal for astronomy beginners.
  • Easy Assembly and Breakdown: The single fork arm design and sturdy steel tripod make it easy to assemble and break down the telescope for transportation. The SkyAlign technology allows users to align the telescope and have it ready for observation in just a few minutes.
  • Compatibility with Advanced Accessories: The NexStar 8SE is compatible with various high-tech accessories, such as SkySync GPS coordinates and StarSense AutoAlign, allowing users to upgrade their telescope as their interest and skill level in astronomy advances.
  • Unbeatable Warranty and Customer Support: The telescope has a 2-year warranty, and users have unlimited access to technical support from US-based experts.
Celestron NexStar 8SE
Celestron Nexstar 8SE” by Rob Stemple is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Cons of the Celestron NexStar 8SE

  • Plastic Accessories: Some users may find the plastic accessories, such as the red-dot finder scope and the primary 25mm eyepiece, lower quality than other telescope accessories available.
  • Short Battery Life: The NexStar 8SE has a relatively short battery life, which may require users to change batteries during extended observing sessions frequently.
  • Limited Astrophotography Capability: Due to its lightweight design, the NexStar 8SE may not be suitable for astrophotography enthusiasts who require a heavier and more stable mount and tripod for their observations.


The Celestron NexStar 8SE is a computerized telescope that combines excellent optics, advanced features, and user-friendly design, making it an ideal choice for beginners and experienced observers. Pros include its superior optics and light-gathering ability, fully automated GoTo mount, easy assembly and breakdown, compatibility with advanced accessories, and unbeatable warranty and customer support.

However, users should know the cons, such as the plastic accessories, short battery life, and limited astrophotography capability. Overall, the NexStar 8SE offers striking views and an easy-to-use system at an economical price, making it a perfect choice for a first serious telescope.

Easy to use

The NexStar 8SE is easy to set up, use, carry, and store. It’s based on the Celestron CGEM mount and has a great accessory kit. In addition, the tabletop design makes it easy to transport and set up anywhere to enjoy astronomy from your backyard or a remote campsite.

GoTo mount

The NexStar 8SE has a GoTo mount that automatically locates objects in the sky, so you won’t need to align your telescope manually. This means there is no need to know the names of constellations or stars—or how to find the North Star! Instead, you enter an object into your telescope’s database and let it work for you. The device will automatically locate and track any heavenly body with its motorized drive system, making for smooth tracking through the night sky.

Celestron Nexstar 8SE Telescope Review
Celestron Nexstar 8SE Telescope Review

The GoTo mount also has two eyepieces that offer different magnifications: 25mm and 10mm (39x). These are great options if you’re looking for more light-gathering power or more expansive views of deep space objects like galaxies and nebulae—they’ll give you up-close looks at what’s out there without sacrificing quality to an essential pair of binoculars.

Lightweight, compact, and easy to carry

The Celestron NexStar 8SE is a lightweight, compact, and easy-to-carry telescope. It weighs 19 pounds (8kg) and measures only 44 x 16.7 x 20 inches (111 x 42 x 51cm). This means one person can carry it quickly, making it suitable for use on various terrains, including in the field or backyard.

The NexStar 8SE has an Altazimuth mount, making it very easy to set up and use. All you need to do is align the optical tube with Polaris (the North Star), level its base plate, and then rotate the tube until it points at Polaris before attaching eyepieces or other accessories. Alignment takes less than 30 seconds!

Once aligned with Polaris, users can choose whether they would like manual control over their telescope or if they prefer auto-tracking functionality, which will automatically slew their scope across stars as they move through space along their nightly orbit around Earth’s Northern Hemisphere horizon; no more setting up targets yourself manually!

High-quality optics with a large aperture

The aperture is the diameter of an optical telescope’s primary lens or mirror. The larger the aperture, the more light can be gathered and magnified. For example, a 4-inch telescope with a 40mm objective lens will gather more light than a 50mm (the same size) scope with a 32mm objective lens.

This makes seeing fainter and more distant objects possible than those visible through smaller scopes. Aperture also affects image quality: The larger the aperture, the better your images will look because there’s less chance of distortion or chromatic aberration (a rainbow effect).

Computerized mount with a database of over 40,000 objects

The Celestron Nexstar 8SE is a computerized mount that uses the SkyAlign technology to align itself. This means you do not need to align it manually, as you would with an analog telescope. The mount also has a database of over 40,000 objects, including stars and galaxies.

This can be accessed through Celestron’s computerized hand controller (HCD), which makes finding celestial bodies easy. This feature allows the telescope to be used for astrophotography or general viewing.

Object location accuracy of 1 arc minute with just two button presses

It’s fantastic that you can locate objects with such precision. For example, if you drive from San Francisco to Seattle (about 500 miles), the NexStar 8SE will show you exactly where each object is located. That’s not just because it has a database of over 120,000 objects — it also has a fast-to-update dual-axis motorized altazimuth mount with Celestron All Sky alignment technology that uses GPS data to align itself with any part of the sky.

This telescope automatically sets up with just two button presses on its hand controller. Then, it locks onto your target using its patented SkyAlign system, refined over the years by dedicated amateur astronomers into one of the most accurate computer-guided systems available today!

It can be used traditionally or attached to a camera or observing device

The Nexstar 8 SE can be used traditionally or attached to a camera or observing device. The Nexstar 8 SE has a built-in, high-resolution USB port that lets users connect their computer or laptop easily. The SkyPortal app allows you to control and control your telescope with your smartphone or tablet.

The NexStar 8SE includes Celestron’s AllSky Planner computerized planetarium software preinstalled on its flash drive. In addition, you will have access to information about over 14 million stars and additional deep-sky objects like nebulas and galaxies at the touch of a few buttons!

Integrated wedge for equatorial alignment of the computerized mount with up to 8 degrees of latitude adjustment

The NexStar 8SE telescope features an integrated wedge for equatorial alignment of the computerized mount with up to 8 degrees of latitude adjustment. This allows you to align the telescope with your location and eliminates the need for separate equipment and lengthy set-up times.

18mm and 9mm eyepieces and red dot finder included with the purchase (more available as additional accessories)

The NexStar 8SE has 18mm and 9mm eyepieces and a red dot finder. If you plan to upgrade your viewing experience with more powerful eyepieces, the 8SE accepts many 1.25″ accessories. A simple upgrade from the included lens will boost your magnification by a factor of ten or more!

The 8SE has a maximum magnification of 228x, which is more than enough to see the moons of Jupiter and the rings of Saturn with ease. This telescope will also give you a crystal-clear view of the four largest moons in our solar system: Titan, Callisto, Europa, and IoIn addition, the 6″ aperture collects more light than smaller telescopes, allowing you to see details like dust storms on Mars or the colorful atmosphere of Venus.

This is a high-quality telescope for an affordable price with everything you need.

This is a high-quality telescope for an affordable price with everything you need. The Nexstar 8SE has all the accessories you’ll need to get started, including two eyepieces, different types of mountings, and cables to connect it all. It’s easy to use and highly portable. You can even use it in your backyard or camping at night if you’re into astronomy.

The optics are also good quality–I’m sure they could be better, but they’re good enough for beginning astronomers!

One thing I like about this telescope is its portability makes it easy to use outdoors or indoors (but please don’t look through the eyepiece while indoors). Another great feature is that no assembly is required out of the box when opening up this package. Instead, all components come preassembled, so you have to insert batteries into its motorized base unit before powering on the device itself!


In conclusion, this is an excellent telescope for beginners. It’s easy to use and comes with everything you need right out of the box. The Nexstar 8SE is great for anyone looking for an entry-level telescope that provides excellent value for its price.

John Frank

I'm John Frank, a photographer, writer, and astronomy enthusiast.
I remember when I was a kid, my dad used to take me out to the backyard to stargaze. He set up his telescope, and we would spend hours looking at the stars. I was always fascinated by how the telescope magnified the stars and made them look close. As an adult, I still enjoy seeing the stars through a telescope. There's something about the way they look that makes me feel so small and insignificant.

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