You'll find the Celestron NexStar 8SE sitting at the top of our Best Telescopes for Deep Space buying guide and in the best-computerized telescopes section of our more general Best Telescopes guide, and for good reason.
Celestron's NexStar range of computerized telescopes is a firm favorite at Space.com, so we're pleased to share that it's currently on a discount of 15% at B (opens in new tab)&H Photo (opens in new tab), Adorama (opens in new tab) and Amazon (opens in new tab) which have all reduced the price on these GoTo instruments by 15% for a great Black Friday deal.
Setting the Celestron NexStar 8SE up is a breeze. The clever SkyAlign technology takes the hassle out of alignment, helping you to begin your night sky observing, or astro shooting quickly.
Given its ease of use, we recommend that this fantastic telescope can be used by the entire family — from the young beginner to the more seasoned skywatcher. Some prior knowledge would be advantageous, but you can use a planetarium app such as Celestron's Sky Portal app if you need to.
The largest of the Celestron NexStar family, the Celestron NexStar 8SE is a serious skywatching telescope that offers seamless night sky tours. Views of everything from Saturn's rings to the Whirpool Galaxy are within reach and at high clarity.
The NexStar series is so versatile, and with ample accessories available, that skywatchers can also push their astrophotography, whether they choose to get serious with lunar and planetary imaging or want to dabble in wide-field photography of deep-sky targets, the NexStar 8SE will fit the bill. The smooth tracking of the motorized mount is perfect for those beautiful long exposures.
The NexStar 8SE does require 8 x AA batteries, so investing in a good battery charger, like this 16-bay charger (opens in new tab) and rechargeable AA (opens in new tab) batteries will save you more money in the long run.
The larger aperture NexStar 4SE is also on sale with 27% off at Adorama (opens in new tab) (that's $100 less than Amazon's current listing price), and the 6SE is $1099 (opens in new tab) at both retailers. There is no skirting around the fact that we have previously seen all of these instruments cheaper. They were all about $200 less in the 2020 Black Friday sales, but in the current climate of price hikes, it's to be expected that you'll now pay more for the same instruments, it's best to grab any deal while you can. While still pricey, the NexStar series is excellent value for money given that it will last for years, if not decades to come.
All models offer excellent optics, thanks to a flawless lens coating so no defects like color fringing or coma ruin your observations. Views of globular clusters, nebulas, planets, the moon and galaxies are revealed with impressive clarity.
The NexStar's database boasts 40,000 night-sky targets to explore at the touch of a button and a 25 mm E-Lux eyepiece, StarPointer finderscope, accessory tray, USB cable, star diagonal, astronomy software, the NexStar+ handset are all included in the price. You can read more of our thoughts about the Nex Star 8SE scope in our NexStar 8SE review.
Be sure to check out Space.com's Black Friday telescope deals page or our guide to the Best Telescopes for more discounted telescopes. We also have a live Black Friday deal blog, posting all the best deals we come across as we find them.