Celestron 14" SCT Fastar-compatible optical tube, CGE/Losmandy dovetail

$4,999.00

Availability: In stock

There are state-of-the-art Starbright XLT multicoatings on the hand-figured 14" aperture SCT optics of this impressive optical tube, plus a Fastar-compatible secondary that lets you add an accessory lens to cut the focal ratio to an astonishing f/2.1 for CCD imaging.
Our Product #: C14OTAFX
Celestron Product #: 91038-XLT
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Product Description

This impressive 45 lb. 14" Celestron Schmidt Cassegrain aluminum optical tube has a state-of-the-art Starbright XLT multicoated Fastar-compatible optics and a light grasp that's an amazing 2581 times that of even the sharpest dark-adapted eye (36% greater than a 12" telescope and almost twice that of a 10" scope). With the effective light-gathering power of that many eyes, the Schmidt-Cassegrain optics of this optical tube can reveal to you faint deep space objects in amazing and intricate visual and photographic detail. It has a 3910mm focal length and a focal ratio of f/11. An optional focal reducer is available to bring the focal ratio down to f/6.9 for CCD and 35mm photography. Optical performance is guaranteed to be diffraction-limited.

The optics are Fastar compatible. This special optical system allows you to replace the scope's secondary mirror assembly with an auxiliary Fastar lens and a suitable CCD camera (an exchange that takes only minutes) for wide field CCD imaging at an incredibly fast f/2.1 focal ratio.

Advanced high transmission Starbright XLT optical multicoatings are standard equipment. This coatings package includes high reflectivity multilayer aluminum mirrors enhanced with titanium dioxide for high reflectivity, plus a unique combination of magnesium fluoride and hafnium dioxide antireflection coatings on both sides of the Schmidt corrector lens. The corrector lens itself is made of high transmission water white float glass instead of conventional soda lime glass (which has 3.5% lower transmission) used in other telescopes.

Starbright XLT multicoatings visibly increase the contrast on subtle lunar, planetary, and nebula details when compared with a scope with standard multicoatings. They also give you higher light transmission for brighter deep space images and shorter exposure times during CCD and 35mm photography. Across the total visual/photographic spectrum from 400nm to 750nm, independent laboratory tests show the new Starbright XLT coatings are 16% brighter overall than even the original industry-standard Starbright multicoatings.

The optics are hand-figured. Hand figuring the optical system is a complex optical procedure done on a commercial basis only by Celestron. Four separate optical tests are made on every set of optics, using a double-pass laser autocollimator - an Airy disc inspection, a test for spherical aberration by examining the diffraction images on both sides of focus, a Ronchi grating test, and a knife edge test. A skilled optician evaluates these tests. He then fabricates a precision pitch lap and delicately hand polishes the secondary mirror to compensate for any small residual zonal defects and smooth the optical figure. Done a few strokes at a time, and testing constantly to evaluate their effect, this final hand-figuring can take hours. But, when it is finished, the optical performance makes every tedious hour of hand-crafting well worth the effort.

The optical tube comes with a big 9 x 50mm straight-through achromatic finderscope and mounting bracket. The finder has a wide 5° field of view. It focuses by loosening the trim ring behind the objective lens cell, screwing the lens cell in or out to focus, and tightening the trim ring to lock in the correct focus. Also standard is a 2" mirror-type star diagonal, as is a 1.25" 40mm plossl eyepiece. This eyepiece provides a magnification of 98x. Its field of view is 0.51° across, as wide as the full Moon. Dust covers for the optics are also supplied.

The optical tube is equipped with a slide bar with a standard 75mm (3") wide dovetail for mounting the tube on a Celestron CGX-L Computerized German equatorial mount or a suitable mount that has a losmandy style saddle plate.

Tech Details

Aperture 14"
Focal Length 3910mm
Focal Ratio f/11
Heaviest Single Component 45 lbs.
Highest Useful Magnification 652x
Weight 45 lbs.
Resolution 0.33 arc seconds
Visual Limiting Magnitude 15.3
Warranty 2 years

Reviews

Review by:
This is the best telescope I have ever owned, clear like a giant refractor!! It hold it's collimation really well, never had to recollimate after hauling it in the truck all over the US. Amazing clear optics, central obstruction is big and cuts it down a little. Heavy but not as heavy as other 14" tubes. It draws crowds at star parties, great planet killer, that smaller refractors cannot compete with. I upgraded from a C-11 to the 14 and it is a huge difference. I ordered it from Astronomics and it was here the next day, Fed-Ex was nice enough to bring all the boxes into the house. I especially like the fact you can lock the mirror for travel. (Posted on 7/24/2019)
Review by:
Optically, my C14 has performed well. Head-to-head with a Meade SCT, the Celestron wins on weight. But here are things that annoy me about the C14 that should not be present in a premium Celestron scope in this price range:

1) Mirror flop. The current cell shifts, so the go-to function in even a scope using a high-end, heavy duty mount that is perfectly aligned with the north/south pole and meticulously calibrated with two or three stars won't consistently put the object in the field of view. Reports of mirror flop are all over the place on Cloudy Nights. After market mirror flop rod sets cost upwards of $200. It is cheesy for Celestron to leave it to its customers to grapple with.

2) Finder scope misaligned I have to struggle to get my finder to align. I only have two adjustment screws, and one of them is right at the edge of its travel. Depending on how my mirror has flopped (See complaint 1), I sometimes can't achieve perfect alignment. I have loosened and realigned several times.

3) Flimsy diagonal hardware: I don't ever need to mount the provided star diagonal on the 3.25" thread since I do a lot of astrophotography. There is a 2" OD tube that is provided, but that tube is flimsy. I have a diagonal from Explore Scientific which is rock solid, and my university purchased an Astro-Physics 2" diagonal at my direction that is also rock solid.

I've provided my full name. I am happy to revise my review and bump my rating to 5 stars if these problems are corrected.
(Posted on 10/24/2018)
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Supplied Accessories

  • Starbright XLT multicoatings
  • Fastar-compatible optics
  • 40mm 2" E-Lux Kellner eyepiece (98x)
  • 2" mirror-type star diagonal
  • 9 x 50mm straight-through finderscope
  • Dust covers
  • Dovetail for mounting on Celestron CGE and Losmandy G-11 and HGM Titan mounts