Astronomy is a wonderful hobby with a rich history of tradition, but it can be tricky to work out where to start sometimes. The best telescopes can often feel too complex, while some budget options can be a little flimsy or less powerful.
Thankfully, the Celestron NexStar 4SE is an ideal option for just about any newcomer to astronomy — particularly if you want to check out the cosmos in impressive clarity without necessarily needing to spend hours fiddling with settings.
As it happens, Amazon has cut the price of the Celestron NexStar 4SE by $100, bringing it down to just $579 — a 15% saving off of the MSRP, and certainly a reason to be cheerful if you've been eyeing one up.
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Thanks to the ease of the SkyAlign setup process and its GoTo technology, the Celestron NexStar 4SE is a crowd-pleaser that's a great way to be introduced to the majesty of the night sky.
For more, be sure to read our full Celestron NexStar 4SE review where we said it's "a good buy for the beginner astronomer for its ease of use and sharp, bright optics." The NexStar 4SE is a good buy for the beginner astronomer for its ease of use and sharp, bright optics. With its user-assisted SkyAlign setup and built-in GoTo technology, it's a family-friendly option for night sky viewing in good conditions.
Key Specs: Iconic Celestron design, durable build, easy setup, a 4-inch aperture and powerful 1325mm focal length all packed into a compact little telescope body. Residing on a single fork arm mount, the mount itself is a motorized GoTo which means automatic slewing to any of the 40,000 celestial objects with the use of the included hand controller.
Consensus: A great option for beginners, the Celestron NexStar 4SE does a lot of the hard work for you, finding night sky objects and requiring no collimation. It's not particularly portable, though, although on the flip side, it is sturdy.
Buy if: You want to get started with astronomy with minimal fuss.
Don't buy if: You want a wider field of view or something you can transport more easily.
Alternative models: The Celestron Astro-Fi 102 is a comparable option, but you'll need a smartphone to control it, while the Sky-Watcher Virtuoso GTi 150P is another alternative that's more aimed at keen skywatchers.
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Lloyd is a long-time freelancer specializing in computer and gaming tech, with a particular focus on all thing Apple. You'll find him regularly testing the latest iPhone or iPad, and you can also find him writing about video games all over the internet. He also has an interest in virtual reality, which he has written about extensively. He's currently the Editor in Chief at GGRecon.com.