Celestron are one of the most reliable manufacturers out there and offer a range of telescopes for the very beginner up to the more advanced astronomer.
The 127EQ PowerSeeker is a powerful beginners telescope that’s more advanced than the Celestron’s simplest beginner models, but not so much that a newbie won’t be able to master it without a bit of dedication.
As for the main specifications, it is a reflector (or Newtonian) telescope with 1000mm Focal Length and 127mm Aperture and weighs in at 17 lb (7.71 kg).
It comes with:
- Two eyepieces (4mm and 20mm) and a 3x Barlow lens
- A tripod with accessory tray
- Equatorial mount for tracking objects in the night sky.
- A Finderscope
- Celestron’s astronomy software – TheSkyX (First Light edition)
This telescope is capable of delivering superb results when mastered. Image definition is great due to excellent optics and a good sized aperture.
You can expect to see close details of the Moon – you will see its landscapes with good detail and even see the craters clearly. You will be able to get good views of the planets in our solar system, such as Mars, Jupiter (and it’s moons) and Saturn. Deep Sky Objects are also within its grasp – galaxies, nebulae and star clusters.
In short, it doesn’t disappoint in terms of its technical capabilities and can deliver stunning results.
A thing to note though is that the eyepieces it comes with are ok but not stellar. They are certainly worth using at the start to explore their limits, but to get the best from the telescope in the long run any owner is likely to want to upgrade to one of the more premium eyepieces that Celestron offers (for instance, the Celestron 93230 8 to 24mm 1.25 Zoom Eyepiece).
Ease of use
Now this is a slightly trickier area to cover. Celestron boasts that it can be taken out of the box and set up without tools ready to use in little time. Whilst this is not a lie, setting it up properly so that it can deliver maximum performance can take more time and effort than is perhaps indicated.
Anybody hoping for something that can be quickly put together, or who may be considering it for a child, is probably best considering a more basic beginner telescope. If, however, you are willing and able to dedicate a bit of time to working out how to make the most of this powerful piece of equipment then you shouldn’t be put off by any of this. Also, putting in this effort may be where you are forced to learn valuable information about telescopes and astronomy.
The manual supplied is not everything you’d hope for. It lacks clear step-by-step instructions and images that you’d hope for. In this situation though, YouTube is your friend – see a video included below that covers set up.
As with any reflector telescope, you will need to become familiar with its alignment (collimation). This process may take a while to master and you should again turn to YouTube for help (see video below) with this at first but it’s a valuable skill to learn for anyone wanting to improve their stargazing in the long run.
The other elements of the telescope, such as the equatorial mount will get some getting used to.
One great positive though for buying from a reputable manufacturer like Celestron is that they provide solid after-purchase service including live-chat on their website (http://www.celestron.com/). This can be invaluable if you are getting stuck as they will have heard your issues many times and have a good reputation for taking customer service seriously.
Value for money
List price is $169.95 but check the Amazon link below for the latest prices. It really is one of the best telescopes available for under $200, provides great value relative the performance, and anyone that is a beginner (or relative beginner) is likely to get years of use out of.
As noted above, you should factor in that you might want to consider upgrading the eyepieces in the long-term, but the equipment that comes with the telescope is more than adequate (especially for a beginner).
Value for money is superb and this is a great beginner’s telescope. It’ll force you to learn to make the most of it and whilst this might require some dedication it’ll be well worth it in the long-run and you have every chance of seeing some great sights.
Overall verdict: 4/5
To see more telescopes like these, check out the best telescopes for beginners.
If you’d like to understand more about the differences between telescopes, check out what to look for when buying a telescope.
Sources and useful information
Celestron’s customer service page can be found here: http://www.celestron.com/support/customer-service-faq
These videos may be useful in helping to set up and collimate the telescope: