I'm not even sure how to properly describe the problem. I purchased a new hand controller, a Celestron NexStar+ to replace the existing one on my NexStar 8SE scope. The replacement had an actual USB port instead of a jack that converted to a DB9 (or DB7) serial port connector for connecting to a PC. I thought it would be convenient, sources here and locally seemed think there was no compatibility issues. The controllers look very similar though the new USB model looks slightly larger (maybe).
I removed the earlier hand set and connected the hand set to the computer in the same port. (A bit of a chore with my basket-size hands.) I set up the system using the Sky Align process as I had done numerous times in the past. Everything had to be input fresh, so I was doubly careful to provide the correct information.
I aligned the scope using three stars I have used in the past. At the end of the third star, I confirmed the three stars used. They were completely wrong. I selected Polaris from the GoTo menu for stars and the scope slewed around to the high southwestern sky.
I shut down the system and started from scratch thinking I must have incorrectly input some of the data. I walked through the Sky Align process using Polaris and two different stars. At the end of the third star, I checked the three stars I had selected, Polaris being the first. Polaris was not on the list. I selected a star cluster in Cassiopeia. The scope slewed around to the west. Probably the correct altitude.
What happened? Did I miss a step in the set-up? Do I have a "bad" controller? Do I need to update firmware / software? (I have no idea where to get the updates, what files to use and what utilities to use to load the firmware / software to the hand unit.)
Thanks in advance for helping to troubleshoot.