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Nexstar 6SE mount review

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#1 Olivier Biot

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 05:08 PM

Nexstar 6SE mount review

By Malcolm Bird.

#2 Doug76

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 10:47 PM

I owned that mount once, and now a relative has it. I found it to be fairly accurate, not as accurate as the CG-5ASGT EQ mount, but close enough.
As you write, it is a fine GnG mount.
Nice article, well stated and laid out.

#3 8ballsct

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 12:45 AM

I felt with your review I could pretty much know what to expect if I tried one. I did try the 8SE and you are right, I found the vibration was too long. Your comment about the mount being more important then the optics, I have a scope with great optics and vibration. I wouldn't use it because of the frustration of trying to focus it. Since I am a nitpicker, comparing the 8SE to an LX200 which is twice the price was maybe a bit unfair, but having said that, I compared the 8SE to my LX90 which is closer in price and instead of trading in my LX90 for the 8SE, I took the Meade back home. Your question regarding the lack of a built in clock has crossed my mind too. Nowadays though, most goto scopes have GPS so the time is easily had. A very fine article and I look forward to more.
John H

#4 Bob Griffiths

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 09:32 AM

I can tell you that my 8i (same mount as the 8Se) is very accurate and any goto that is not dead center is just off the center of the FOV in a 25 mm eyepiece....

BUT I will also tell you that it does take an hour or so to to set up the scope correctly ..balance on the dovetail goto approach set according to how it is balanced lots of messing with the backlash settings to remove the slop in the gears but once done you will not have to do it again IF you mount the scope in the same position ...

Its is a lot more accurate then my old LXD55 (not a good comparison as that thing is about as accurate as me throwing darts left handed after a few beers at the local bar...) and is just as accurate as my CPC1100 as far aas GoTo;s and tracking goes...BUT the CPC worked right out of the box the 8i (*se) took some time to set up...and btw I use the Rght and Down buttons to center my alignment stars because I run the scope with a very slight rear end weight bias....

The shakes... blame most of them on the tripod...I set up my 8i on the OEM tripod that came with my CPC1100...(direct bold ton no mods required) and its like night and day...but a simple motofocus cures the shakes if you use the lighter weight Se tripod...

Bob G

#5 TonyDralle

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 11:15 AM

A good review, except two issues the writer has with the mount are easily corrected:

a) Vibration while focusing is indeed a problem for the ham-handed, especially if the scope is set up on a hard surface, like concrete. Setting up on a soft surface (a grassy lawn) helps considerably, as do Celestron's anti-vibration pads placed under the tripod legs. The ultimate solution is a motor-driven focusing device, such as JMI's Moto-Focus, which eliminates the shakes completely.

B) Drifting of a target out of the field of view can also be completely eliminated by centering the target from the correct direction. In the northern hemisphere, ALWAYS center the target by moving it from the left side of the FOV toward the center. For vertical centering, initially try moving the target from the top toward the center; if it drifts vertically, instead center it from the bottom toward the center. When centered properly, it will remain near the center of the FOV for hours. See this Cloudy Nights article for further details: Method to Improve Tracking of Celestron Nexstar

Although an AC adaptor will work, for observing in the field a 12 volt battery (Celestron Power Tank, jump start batteries, etc.) is the preferred power source.

Finally, refer to the Celestron Nexstar Forum below for several years' worth of discussion about this mounting.

- Tony Dralle

#6 Smack

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 09:25 PM

I have this mount. I use it with 6" and 8" SCTs. I find gotos accurate and objects will stay in the FOV for literally hours.

#7 Wol

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 09:21 AM

a) Vibration while focusing is indeed a problem for the ham-handed...


I think that's a bit harsh.

regards

#8 coutleef

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 04:35 PM

A good review, except two issues the writer has with the mount are easily corrected:

a) Vibration while focusing is indeed a problem for the ham-handed, especially if the scope is set up on a hard surface, like concrete. Setting up on a soft surface (a grassy lawn) helps considerably, as do Celestron's anti-vibration pads placed under the tripod legs. The ultimate solution is a motor-driven focusing device, such as JMI's Moto-Focus, which eliminates the shakes completely.

B) Drifting of a target out of the field of view can also be completely eliminated by centering the target from the correct direction. In the northern hemisphere, ALWAYS center the target by moving it from the left side of the FOV toward the center. For vertical centering, initially try moving the target from the top toward the center; if it drifts vertically, instead center it from the bottom toward the center. When centered properly, it will remain near the center of the FOV for hours. See this Cloudy Nights article for further details: Method to Improve Tracking of Celestron Nexstar

Although an AC adaptor will work, for observing in the field a 12 volt battery (Celestron Power Tank, jump start batteries, etc.) is the preferred power source.

Finally, refer to the Celestron Nexstar Forum below for several years' worth of discussion about this mounting.

- Tony Dralle


Completely agree with Tony on these two points. I also find that the mount can carry a 8" SCT easily.

#9 Starman1

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 06:34 PM

As some further opinions on this scope:

The "slip-clutch" tends to be adjusted too loosely.
The mount's accuracy and shimmy period seem to be aided substantially by adjusting the slip clutch to make the scope tighter. It should require a fair amount of force to move the scope up and down in altitude.

Also, positioning the dovetail in the mount is adjustable. To get the star diagonal to clear the base, the scope must be up all the way--if you look at the arm, there is a cutout that the rear cell of the scope nests into perfectly when the scope is so positioned. Unfortunately, this is not the position the scope has to be mounted to reinsert it in the box it comes in. In the position the scope is attached to the arm when it is unpacked, the star diagonal will hit the base.

External power sources are essential for the mount. Slewing with internal AA batteries will cause them to go dead in as little as 2 hours. The computer goes haywire when the batteries are low.

The 5SE comes on a mixed alt-az/EQ mount, but the 6SE does not. The extra weight,if tipped over into an EQ position, would make the scope quite tippy. This is a scope that, if EQ mounting is desired, should have a wedge or be remounted on a German EQ mount.

#10 TH1

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Posted 19 March 2011 - 03:02 PM

I have the 8SE. You need a SkySync GPS to dial in the GOTO. Have had the scope for over a year with no problems when properly set up and power to the mount is correct - ie: good batteries - get Starizona's power pack, it rocks!

#11 Pentax Syntax

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:38 AM

Based on your review I adopted this mount for my meade ETX-125 and so far have been happy with it. While more stable than the original ETX-125 EC mount, the GOTO accuracy is not quite as good. On the other hand, with high precision GOTO activated, it is quite nice. Although there seems to be much debate about whether the Autostar or the Nexstar controllers are the better controller, I find little to distinguish between them. I am happier with the Autostar tour function but I also really like the solar system or one star alignment of the Nexstar. I have noticed that my 10" LX-90 autostar GOTO accuracy is far superior to the Celestron SE 6/8 mount. In spite of this, I am happy with the Meade ETX-125/Celestron SE 6/8 mount solution!

#12 orion61

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 03:20 PM

I know bottom Dollar is important but I have both the 127 SLT and 6se NexStars, Both tripods are far from adequate.
especially the SLT which as is out of the box is ok for a C90 but not much more.
I replaced the tripod on the SLT and it is a totally different experience.
My 6se has WAY too much play so I am sending the mount in before the Warranty is up. Useing the anti backlash
is so bad if you tap the button it jumps, but if set lower it drifts clear out of the field of view, 1/2 way from left approach.
Why 40.00 on the tripods? its like living through the 60's and 70's with those spindly bouncy mounts.
You can " live " with these but the experience is no where nearly as enjoyable. Thankfully the tubes are wonderfully corrected!






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