The Celestron NexStar 6SE is a versatile telescope suitable for a variety of sky observation tasks, especially as it can be used by beginners who are just starting out in astronomy and more experienced observers who know the night sky perfectly.
Given its capabilities, this telescope is quite difficult to outgrow – it can be used as the main observer’s instrument or even as an addition to an existing set, giving the astronomer a faster and more convenient sky observation than a more complex one. settings. The NexStar 6SE is easy to equip with optional eyepieces, red dot finders, filters and stellar diagonals essential for a better view of the solar system and deep space targets.
The telescope offers astrophotography, but you need a T-ring or adapter if you choose to shoot with CCD, CMOS or DSLR, or a smartphone adapter for iPhone or Android photography. The idea of using a GoTo telescope may seem daunting to many newbies, but Celestron’s detailed guides and software will keep you from any worries.
Connected: Best telescopes
Main features of Celestron NexStar 6SE
Optical design: Schmidt-Cassegrain
Diaphragm: 150 mm (5.91 inches)
Focal length: 1,499 mm (59 in)
Focal Ratio: f / 10
Eyepiece focal length: 25mm (60x)
Total kit weight: 21 lbs. (9.53 kg)
Mount type: Single lever fork, alt azimuth
Celestron NexStar 6SE: Design
- Robust, durable construction
- StarBright XLT optical coating for clear images
- Eight AA batteries drain quickly
One 25mm Plossl eyepiece comes with the Celestron 6SE to provide 60x magnification, but much more can be achieved with the optical system, so we recommend purchasing multiple eyepieces and filters considering that the maximum usable magnification is 354x – to get the most out of it. the capabilities of this telescope.
This Schmidt-Cassegrain took almost no time to set up and we were impressed with the quality of many of its components, especially its red dot finder and sturdy stainless steel tripod. The rugged design of the NexStar 6SE promises to last for years of observation sessions if handled with care. In addition, since catadioptric telescopes can be exposed to moisture while observing, dew protection is a worthwhile investment to protect the optical system and extend the life of the telescope.
Weighing 21 lbs. (9.53 kilograms), the Celestron 6SE is a little heavy due to the technology and the components packed in it: a slight inconvenience for those who may need help transporting their scope from one place to another. Regardless, the NexStar 6SE boasts quality compared to lighter tools, so we don’t consider this to be a major design flaw.
A rather big drawback is that the computerized alt-azimuth fork mount requires eight AA batteries to operate. Unfortunately, the NexStar 6SE drains batteries pretty quickly, which makes it pretty frustrating to use when the computer “shuts down” while you’re busy monitoring. Over time – and with constant battery changes – using a telescope can become quite a costly endeavor.
Undaunted, we tried rechargeable batteries as a means of exploring an alternate power path for the NexStar 6SE, but found the telescope to behave strangely with low power consumption and found that rapid loss of charge was still a problem. We highly recommend purchasing an AC power cord from Celestron – unfortunately it is not included with your telescope.
Celestron has a lot of promises when it comes to the performance of this tool, so we were pleased to find that the NexStar 6SE did exactly what it says on the can when we took it out for testing on a clear December evening.
First, star alignment, which uses Celestron SkyAlign technology and calibrates to pinpoint targets, was impressively simple, and it wasn’t long before we were all ready to travel through the wintry night sky.
Celestron NexStar 6SE: first light and functionality
- Noisy motorized mount and obvious vibration
- Tracks targets accurately
- No color fringing or visual defects
Our first target was the Orion Nebula (Messier 42), which lies just below Orion’s belt and is easily visible to the naked eye as a fuzzy spot glowing at magnitude +4. By using a control to tell NexStar to see this diffuse nebula, the computerized mount ran smoothly and the GoTo technology was very accurate in detecting objects. For example, the Trapezium Cluster is located in the center of the Orion Nebula and has been found to be aligned close to the center of the field of view.
When we saw the heart of the star-forming region, we did notice some vibration during focusing, but after completion of the observation, it was possible to proceed without any obstruction. Thanks to StarBright XLT’s superior optical coverage, our observations of the nebula and its stellar elements were very crisp, bright and clear with no optical defects.
As the telescope pivots towards its target – this model has nine speeds – the mount does make a lot of noise, especially when we used moderate to fast settings. If you find the noise repulsive and enjoyable to watch without a computerized mount, it’s fairly easy to switch to manual, given that the tube has a Vixen-style dovetail. However, remember that you will need a Vixen adapter if you wish to mount the handset to a different Celestron mount.
Back inside to warm up with a hot drink, we decided to experience NexStar’s lunar, solar and star tracking and left it focused on the star. Returning to the telescope after 30 minutes, we found that our target had not slipped out of sight, highlighting the instrument’s suitability for long exposure astrophotography.
Since the near-full moon takes pride of place quite late in the evening, we took the opportunity to see the cratered surface of our natural satellite. The moon views we saw were spectacular, with NexStar showing well-defined crater walls and a very high level moon mare – Copernicus and Tycho craters were particularly impressive and crystal clear at a modest 5.91-inch aperture.
Since the gas giant Jupiter is also in a good position in the sky and a few degrees from the Moon, NexStar quickly located the planet and its four largest moons: Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. Jupiter was visible in the field of view as a bright disk, and Ganymede and Europa appeared as sharp points of white light flanking the giant’s left limb, while Io and Callisto could be found relatively close to the planet’s right edge. Faint brown and cream streaks were visible on Jupiter’s surface.
As we found when observing the Orion Nebula, the views through Schmidt-Cassegrain optics were impressively clear and bright, with no obvious chromatic aberration or color fringing. Jupiter will continue to be an excellent target only with the magnification of the telescope, which we highly recommend using either a Barlow lens or optional 1.25-inch eyepieces. The blue filter will provide superior contrast, highlighting the glow and scallops in the gas giant’s cloud layers, and facilitate easy viewing of the planetary king’s famous storm: the Great Red Spot.
Celestron NexStar 6SE: Verdict
The NexStar 6SE is a fine example of the legendary Celestron telescope. Considering its capabilities and revolutionary technology, the price is reasonable, but there is no good selection of eyepieces in the kit that would provide even more variety of images. The rig offers lifelong surveillance with gentle handling and virtually no optics maintenance and computerized mounts.
NexStar 6SE alignment technology simplifies instrument calibration, and once completed, the GoTo system provides extremely accurate target localization at the push of a button. The telescope’s database boasts 40,000 targets that can be rotated, but despite a useful 354x magnification, it is impossible to see all objects with clarity, even with optional accessories such as eyepieces and Barlow lenses. In some cases, however, astrophotography reveals some of the dimmer targets that are visible with larger aperture telescopes.
The GoTo device runs out of batteries and is a little noisy during operation, but constant power supply and moving the telescope to a remote location (if you’re worried about waking up your neighbors!) Are simple solutions for otherwise excellent. tool.