There are so many good telescope brands out there and one of them is Celestron. This company alone has tons of great options depending on your preference such as the popular Catadioptric style Celestron NexStar 127 SLT Vs 4SE. These computerized telescopes are amazing for those who want the best convenience as well as willing to pour more budget. If this sounds like you, here in our article we’ll see what these favorite models can offer so you can choose wisely.
In this article, we are going to give you information about:
- What are the Types of Telescope
- What are NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE
- What NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE Look Like
- How are the Specifications of NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE
- How are the Performance of NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE
- How are the Mounting of NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE
- NexStar 127 SLT Vs 4SE
Telescopes may not be something we use everyday and wait for the release date every year but it has the quality to improve your experience. They are not fancy devices offered with advanced technology and carry what most people want today such as a new smartphone, cameras, or personal computers yet they make you able to see and observe objects that are not yet possible to be physically reached for the majority of humankind. For those who are interested in astronomy, having one is a must.
When you shop through the tons of options out there, it can be very confusing however, especially for a first time buyer or if this unit is meant to be a present. Choosing a telescope without a little bit of knowledge of this device is not recommended and as the basic, there are actually many types of them you can choose yet, in general telescopes can be simply separated into 3 types:
- Refractor Telescope
You may rarely see a telescope marketed with the type included in the model but one of the most popular and the first telescope invented is actually called a refractor and it is named such because the image was formed by the bending of light, or refraction. It was invented by Hans Lippershey in 1608 which initially magnified the object three times. Galileo was more popular because he was the first to aim it at the sky and design his own which is also an improved version than the original model.
Refractor is probably the main image people have in mind when we talk about a telescope and you can easily recognize them with their typically slimmer optic tube and lens at the tip of the device.
- Reflector Telescope
Many years after the refractor was invented, people start to recognize the disadvantage of this device which is called chromatic aberration effect. This problem produces a rainbow of colors around the image due to the wave nature of light, similar to those in prisms that produce rainbow colors. In 1668 Isaac Newton created the new type of telescope called reflector and instead of lens, this device uses mirrors. Since it doesn’t suffer from chromatic aberration, more astronomers often prefer this type.
|Celestron NexStar 127 SLT||Celestron NexStar 4SE|
|Product Dimensions||40 x 19 x 11 inches||32.4 x 27.2 x 13.4 inches
|Shipping Weight||20 pounds||11.02 pounds
|Best offer||Check price||Check price|
You can easily spot a reflector or Newtonian telescope by the fairly wider tube and its open design; unlike a reflector, this telescope is not covered which is why it may need more care. In comparison, a reflector is also lighter than the lens type.
- Catadioptric Telescope
This is the more modern type of telescope and the design itself was made by German astronomer named Bernhard Schmidt in 1930. This is often called a compound of hybrid telescopes since they are a mix of refractor and reflector. The design was tweaked to have a primary mirror at the back of the telescope and a glass corrector plate in the front of the telescope to remove spherical aberration but instead for astronomy, it is focusing on photography by adding photographic film at the prime focus of the primary mirror.
Nowadays, the most popular types of telescope that are not classified as either refractor or reflector are Schmidt-Cassegrain designs such as Celestron NexStar 8SE vs Evolution 8 which is becoming more prominent since the 1960s. This type uses a secondary mirror that bounces light through a hole in the primary mirror to an eyepiece.
About NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE
The option is all yours as there are even more than these when you dig in deeper into the enthusiast products but we do think these are the basic types that all users even beginners can pull advantage from. When it is about telescopes, besides the type itself we also have several factors to consider such as the size and which eyepiece to buy if they don’t have the one that fits your preference yet. Overall we do recommend going for name brands to ensure the quality.
Talking about telescopes, it is difficult to not mention Celestron as well because they are one of the main players out there and almost all astronomers are familiar with their products; despite what impression and experience they have with the unit. Personally we like them because they do have lots of great items for the budget and almost any models available to match your preference. If you are here then it means a compound telescope is what you are looking for and this brand also has it ready.
Celestron have various lines in their catalog and one of them is NexStar which has almost any type of device you want. Celestron NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE are two similar units which confusingly have different price points and this is why some buyers may get confused about which to choose. In general, you can do all what is possible in the former as well as in the latter but it doesn’t mean they are identical. As many know, the SE is a Schmidt-Cassegrain line but it is only true to their upper models.
The 4SE itself is similarly a Maksutov-Cassegrain just like the 127 SLT which is often mistaken as the lower-end model but performance wise, these two are very much comparable to each other. As computerized telescopes, these catadioptric designs are very convenient and also more beginner friendly.
NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE Design
As a catadioptric, you can expect NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE to come in such a small profile especially on the optical tube length because this is mostly the main benefit of the design. However, side by side they are not identical as well. First, the SE family has different fashion than other telescopes from the company as it uses this bright orange coating instead of black or dark grey like the 127 SLT. Second, their optical tubes are also different and in comparison 4SE is slightly longer.
However, the 127 SLT has a wider optical tube diameter. The tube itself is the same and both of them are made with aluminum which is very good as they can last for quite a long time. Being computerized, these two are coming with an alt-azimuth mounting but they are equally motorized so you don’t have to purchase the additional accessories later. Additionally, you will get everything in the box including the eyepiece and stainless tripod.
NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE Specification
Moving further, let’s see what NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE can offer and there are various factors you may want to know when looking for a telescope in which the most important is their aperture. As the name suggests, they are 127mm or 5-inch and 102mm or 4-inch type, so in comparison the former should be able to present the image brighter than its brother. But, for the focal length, they are also slightly different at 1500mm and 1325mm respectively.
If their apertures were the same, you may notice the difference in between their images but their differences make the experience equal. They also have eyepieces in the box to let you observe right after finishing the setup but we have 2 of them from the 127 SLT while the latter only gave you 1. Starting with 127 SLT, the only eyepiece is 25mm with 60x magnification and 9mm with 167x magnification compared to 25mm with 53 magnification in NexStar 4SE.
NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE Performance
The same telescope with the same aperture but different focal length will look different but since these two are pretty much different in both models, side by side the image seen from NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE are almost the same and if anything, the field of view from 4SE is actually narrower hence your object appears slightly bigger in comparison. Image quality wise however, they are equally amazing, moons look beautiful and details can be seen from any of these telescopes.
Using their eyepiece or adding with your own, we can observe other planets as well such as the pretty popular clouds in Jupiter and Saturn’s amazing ring but you may not want to go for a far smaller eyepiece since it is difficult to focus.
NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE Mounting
Since NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE are using motorized mounting, let’s see this additional part as well and in comparison we do think they are similar to each other. The SE upper products seem to have better mounting than these two and there have been some failures reported for these models yet, worry not as they have a 2-year warranty to cover the issue. The last thing we want to mention is these motorized mount need batteries which are 8 AA and are not included in the box.
Celestron NexStar 127 SLT vs 4SE
These telescopes are good for the budget and the fact that they are computerized making it easier for beginners to cut all the manual process while taking no time to assemble as well. Performance wise they are very similar and image quality are brightly crisp in any of these telescopes but expect to view the object slightly closer through the 4SE. Their motorized mount will equally requite 8 AA batteries or rechargeable packs that you can purchase separately.
We do think NexStar 127 SLT and 4SE are equally reliable options with slight difference that doesn’t affect their performance but in comparison, personally we prefer smaller focal ratio for wider field of view and for this we choose the NexStar 127 SLT but, if the budget is limited, the 4SE will still be a great option.