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Hello,

I'm looking to get myself a new telescope to get back outside and looking up. I currently have a Celestron Astromaster 130eq, however, I do not use it as much as it broke in a way where the mount and knobs cannot be fixed. I did enjoy using it, but now I am looking for a more convenient scope to use. I'm looking at smaller goto scopes around $400. I want to be able to take it with me anywhere, set it up in minutes, and get to observing without much hassle (punch in an object and have it be tracked). I'm currently looking at the two scopes below:

Celestron NexStar 4se 
Celestron NexStar 130 SLT

I realized the 130 is the same size as my current scope, but with its goto factor, I feel like I would use it a lot more. The 4se is very appealing due to its small form factor. In addition to the Solar System, I would like to be able to see some DSOs. As for the price, $400 is my comfort zone at the moment, but I'll consider going up or down based on recommendations. If anyone has any experience with the scopes above, or has a recommendation, please share your input. I would love to hear it as I really want to get back outside and observing. 

Thanks,
Spriggs


 

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Hi, and welcome to SGL.

Not really answering your question (and I just hate it when people do that to me!), but how exactly is your current scope broken? If it is just the mount that is broken (ie the "knobs" are part of the mount), would it be worth considering purchasing a new mount and keeping your current OTA? An EQ3 Pro Goto would be within your budget. Even better, if you could stretch to it, would be an EQ5 Pro Goto.

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1 hour ago, Demonperformer said:

Hi, and welcome to SGL.

Not really answering your question (and I just hate it when people do that to me!), but how exactly is your current scope broken? If it is just the mount that is broken (ie the "knobs" are part of the mount), would it be worth considering purchasing a new mount and keeping your current OTA? An EQ3 Pro Goto would be within your budget. Even better, if you could stretch to it, would be an EQ5 Pro Goto.

Raising a very good point here, new mount and hey presto, away you go. 

If you like gadgets, this one doesn't really need a battery pack (or so I hear) as it runs for ages off standard AA batteries, will easily manage your current 130 newtonian and its controlled from your smartphone with a free app.

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/alt-azimuth/sky-watcher-az-gti-wifi-alt-az-mount-tripod.html

Not sure if its available from stores where you are though 🤔

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You don't have to buy a new complete outfit, you could buy a new GoTo mount - and there are now plenty of options, both alt-azimuth and equatorial. If you are only interested in visual, you should avoid the complication of an equatorial GoTo mount.

The scopes you cite are on the small side for looking at DSO's - you will be able to see some, but an 8" will show many more. What are your skies like? If you live in a light polluted area, you will see very few DSO's.

Be aware that the scopes you cite are not near-equivalent - the 4SE is a Maksutov with a narrow field of view while the 130 is, IIRC, a short focal ratio Newtonian with a potentially wide field of view.  If you are interested on planets etc also consider the 127mm Mak Nexstar SLT.

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Thanks for the input. I'll consider a new mount instead of a whole new setup, I think the appeal of a smaller scope to set up and move around has its appeal though. As for as it being broken @Demonperformer, there is a screw/bolt that came lose and lost its tension with knob. The actual slot for the screw became damaged as well making it almost impossible for it to go back in. Now that knob is useless and doesn't work. 

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