Celestron 8" Advanced VX Series Go-To Equatorial Schmidt-Cassegrain


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For decades, the iconic 8" aperture Celestron C8 Schmidt-Cassegrain was (and very often still is) the dream telescope of most amateur astronomers. The new Celestron AVX8SC with StarBright XLT coatings puts Celestron's decades of telescope-making experience to work to produce the latest version of that dream telescope - an affordable big scope that will make visual observers and astrophotographers alike very happy.
Our Product #: AVX8SC
Celestron Product #: 12026
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Product Description

This Celestron Advanced VX 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope has:
• 8" f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain optical tube
• Starbright XLT optical multicoatings
• heavy-duty Advanced VX Series computerized go-to equatorial mount and tripod
• 6 x 30mm finderscope
• 20mm Plössl eyepiece (102x)
• 2-year warranty

The Celestron AVX8SC Advanced VX Series telescope with Starbright XLT coatings is an 8" aperture Schmidt-Cassegrain optical tube on a newly-designed and refined AVX computerized go-to German equatorial mount. For the ultimate in optical performance from a standard 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain, it has new Starbright XLT multicoatings that are 16% brighter than original Starbright multicoatings across the entire photo/visual spectrum.

For the purely visual observer, its light grasp of almost 850 times that of even the sharpest dark-adapted eye can reveal to you star clusters, nebulas, planets, and galaxies in amazing detail. The go-to mount makes finding over 40,000 of those stars and objects easy and automatic, so you can spend more time looking at them, not looking for them. Its high-precision AVX mount, with its many features that optimize it for astrophotography, makes serious deep space and solar system imaging a very real possibility for amateur and advanced astrophotographers alike.

The optical tube is the latest version of the Celestron-pioneered optical system that took phenomenally expensive Schmidt-Cassegrain optics out of the hands of professional astronomers and made them available for the first time at a reasonable price to all amateur astronomers. In essence, the original Celestron 8" SCT made modern amateur astronomy possible.

The Celestron AVX8SC with Starbright XLT multicoatings is priced to make big aperture go-to astronomy available to almost everyone. Its light weight optical tube and easily assembled mount make it easy to set up and enjoy - either in your back yard or at a distant dark sky site. Its superb optical quality and very reasonable price for a computerized go-to mount make it a telescope that virtually any beginning or advanced astronomer can afford and enjoy.

This Telescope's Optical System . . .

Schmidt-Cassegrain optical tube: 8" aperture (2032mm focal length f/10). Guaranteed diffraction-limited optical performance. High light transmission Starbright XLT optical multicoatings. The 17" long aluminum optical tube weighs only 13 lbs., making it easy to transport and assemble the scope in the field.

Finderscope: 6 x 30mm straight-through achromatic design, with a wide 7 degree field of view. 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.

Visual back: Removable 1.25" visual back holds visual accessories such as star diagonal, tele-extender, etc.

Star diagonal: 1.25" prism type.

Eyepiece: 1.25" 20mm Plössl (102x). The eyepiece field of view is 0.47 degrees, nearly the width of the full Moon.

This Telescope's Mount . . .

Heavy duty Advanced VX Series computerized go-to German equatorial mount: This scope's new Advanced VX mount was specifically designed to provide optimum imaging performance for telescopes 30 lbs and under. It has the imaging-friendly features of Celestron's larger telescope mounts, such as permanent periodic error correction (PPEC) and the ability to image across the meridian without doing a meridian flip, so you can seamlessly image the best part of the night sky.

Experienced imagers will love taking this portable mount to a dark sky site (the head weighs only 26 lbs, the tripod only 18 lbs, plus one 11 lb counterweight), as it provides all the performance of their larger observatory mounts in a portable package. If you're new to imaging, the Advanced VX mount will help you get started with the hobby and keep up with your needs for years to come.

The mount includes dual-axis slewing/tracking low-cog DC servo motors with positioning encoders on each axis for go-to computer control. The new motors provide improved tracking performance and more power to handle an unbalanced load than previous Advanced Series drives. Built-in adjustable backlash compensation and permanent user-programmed periodic error correction (PPEC) permits precise corrections during astrophotography and when observing visually at high powers. The maximum slewing speed is a fast 4° per second.

The scope is supplied with a car battery cord to operate from the cigarette lighter plug of your car or from a rechargeable 12V battery pack. The mount requires a 12VDC 3.5A power source, so the Celestron 17 amp hour capacity Power Tank #4517V is recommended for extended use in the field. The Power Tank can be recharged hundreds of times and will operate the scope all night long without danger of running out of power. Celestron AC adapter #2338PRO is also available to operate the scope from household AC in your back yard.

The sliding 11 pound counterweight is locked in place with a single hand-tighten thumbscrew each, making it easy to rebalance the scope if you add heavy photographic accessories. The mount is easily capable of handling the scope and any reasonable combination of photographic accessories you might want to use. Covers keep the motor drives free from dust and debris. A set of optional vibration suppression pads #4525 under the tripod feet will improve the telescope damping time for steadier high power observing.

To make a casual polar alignment for visual use quick and easy, there's a latitude scale and fine adjustment controls in both altitude and azimuth. The scope can be used over a wide 7° to 77° latitude range in both the northern and southern hemispheres. The scope includes Celestron's unique All-Star computerized polar alignment that lets you do an accurate polar alignment even when Polaris is hidden by trees or buildings.

Adjustable height tripod: The tripod has 2" diameter steel legs with a center leg brace for rigidity, with excellent damping characteristics. The center leg brace is drilled to form a convenient accessory tray that holds 1.25" and 2" eyepiece to keep them up out of the dew-soaked grass. The tripod can be adjusted to put the mount height anywhere from 44" to 64".

Dovetail slide bar: An adjustable Vixen-style dovetail slide bar allows the optical tube to be quickly and precisely balanced fore and aft on the mount, eliminating the need for an extra counterweight to balance a camera or other accessories. Setup and takedown times are exceptionally fast, as a single large hand-tighten knob holds the optical tube in place. A second lock knob prevents the tube from sliding off the mount should the hand-tighten knob loosen. The Vixen-style dovetail on the mount allows you to use other optical tubes on the Advanced VX mount, adding to the scope's versatility.second lock knob prevents the tube from sliding off the mount should the hand-tighten knob loosen.

NexStar+ computer hand control: The supplied NexStar+ computerized hand control has a built-in database of more than 40,000 stars and deep space/solar system objects it can find for you. These include the complete RNGC, Messier, Caldwell, IC, and Abell catalogs; selected SAO stars, such as variables and multiple star systems; the planets, the Moon, and more. There is enhanced information on over 200 of the most note-worthy objects.

You can also store and edit the right ascension and declination of additional user-defined objects of your own choosing, such as the comet and asteroid coordinates published monthly in Astronomy and Sky & Telescope magazines. The computer control can find any of those objects with at your command, and accurately track them for visual or photographic application.

All of the database and telescope operation information is displayed on a double line, 16-character, liquid crystal display on the hand control, which has user-selectable multiple language display (English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish). There are 19 fiber optic back-lit LED buttons to make it easy for you to control the computer without affecting your dark adapted vision. An RS-232 communication port on the hand control allows you to operate the telescope via a personal computer. The computer hand control software can be upgraded over the Internet from Celestron's website, assuring that you always have the most current software version at your command.

Several different alignment methods are built into the NexStar+ computer, allowing you to choose a level of computer accuracy in automatically finding objects with which you are comfortable. Both two-star and more-accurate three-star computer guided alignment methods are easily accomplished in only a few short minutes. You can be observing in less than 15 minutes after you first take your scope outdoors, including telescope assembly time.

In addition, the NexStar+ computer hand control is GPS-compatible (using an optional inexpensive SkySync GPS module) for full GPS (Global Positioning System) satellite accuracy. Adding GPS to the computer is something no competitive scope can do. With the Advanced Series go-to mount and the SkySync, orienting the scope in time and space on earth and aligning the scope on the sky becomes almost as easy as simply turning the scope on.

Two-year warranty: All Celestron go-to telescopes have a two-year warranty.

Tech Details

Aperture 8"
Focal Length 2032mm
Focal Ratio f/10
Heaviest Single Component 26 lbs.
Highest Useful Magnification 480x
Motorized Controls Computer Go-To
Weight 68 lbs.
Optical Coatings StarBright XLT
Resolution 0.57 arc seconds
Supplied Eyepiece 20mm 1.25"
Telescope Type Schmidt-Cassegrain
View Finder 6x30
Visual Limiting Magnitude 14 arc seconds
Warranty 2 years


Review by:
The Celestron AVX 8” SCT telescope has been a workhorse for the last 3 years. I started astrophotography using an alt/as go to mount with my dlsr. As my interests and ability’s improved I was looking for a better mount and larger telescope to use. I decided to go with the Celestron 8” SCT on the AVX mount and I have been very pleased with the choice. The telescope is light enough to be portable and heavy enough to provide a steady support for long exposures. Last year I added HyperStar to the SCT and I’m blown away by the speed and quality I am obtaining in my astrophotos. I am very pleased with my purchase! (Posted on 10/23/2019)
Review by:
This is my first fully automated telescope. Previously I was using a 10" Dob from Orion. I do mostly astrophotography of planets, nebulas, galaxies, etc.... So far this mount is preforming well for me. Ordered it in Feb of this year so I'm still pretty new to this hobby. The only concern I have is that I might be over taxing the mount with all the additional hardware I've added. Dew Heater, 70mm guide Scope, Crayford style focuser, Star Sense camera. and another 11bls of counter weight. All this additional weight might be effecting the tracking of the mount. (Posted on 10/18/2019)
Review by:
Upgraded from a 6"sct to do astrophotography and visual astronomy. Goes about a minute without a tracking scope and good polar alignment. With a tracking scope, I have seen people go 3 minutes! Best part- small enough to be portable. Way easier to carry around than a 14" scope. ;) (Posted on 10/17/2019)
Review by:
Ordered a few months ago and am well pleased ! Recently had the chance to compare to a 9.25 and my 8 held her own ! (Posted on 8/1/2019)
Review by:
The C8 Advanced VX is my first telescope purchase. The 8' aperture is perfect for first timers like me who are just beginning to get used to what this telescope if capable of doing. I have also added several accessories over the last few years, including a dew shield, power tank, and several different filters for those planetary and solar viewing experiences. One of the best products was the addition of the Celestron NexImage Burst Color fast download color CMOS solar system imager. It works great for someone that is starting off dabbling in astro-photography. As for the mount, it's fairly light weight, sturdy, and very easily can be set up when in use and taken down, when done. I would highly recommend this telescope for one that is wanting to get into their discovery of "what's out there." I'm positive that the joy I have received from it, will definitely be the same results for you. (Posted on 7/24/2019)
Review by:
This is a great combo that I've seen many visual observers and imagers use. a C8 and an AVX is good for both AP and visual use. The weight of the C8 is just enough for the AVX mount for both applications. The c9.25 pushes it a little but the 8" and this mount pair well. I image with a friend who uses an AVX and an 8" and hes gotten pics of M45 and jupiter from Jones Beach LI that would need to be seen to be believed. If you're considering a 10" as I was in the beginning, take a look thru an 8". When I was starting out, aperture fever had me. I wanted a 10" and it was massive. I settled on an 8" and it was the best decision i ever made. (Posted on 11/25/2018)
Review by:
This was my first telescope and it still sees heavy use from me. The mount is very sturdy and offers a very good polar aligning procedure that takes just minutes to do. I can easily get 30 second unguided images with no star trails whatsoever! (Posted on 11/4/2018)
Review by:
I love the 8inch SCTs from Celestron because of their versatility. They are great observing scopes for lunar and planetary. After that, if you move into imaging, you can do closeup F/10 imaging for planets, use a reducer for a wider field of galaxies, or even F2 widefield imaging with a hyperstar lens. One scope can act like 3, and that’s great value.

The AVX mount is really at the minimum of what you want for this scope. It works great for observing, but when imaging, you will notice that the C8 is pushing the capacity for steady guiding. That’s the only thing keeping this off 5 stars. (Posted on 10/27/2018)
Review by:
This is my "beginners" telescope. What a great starting point it is. Its aperture allows for viewing plenty of deep sky objects which will keep you plenty busy. I recommend the purchase of two objects: a lunar filter, and a finderscope. You will most certainly want to look at the moon, and the moon throws back much of the sunlight which hits it. You can give yourself retinal damage. The finder scope will greatly aid you in triangulating and programing the tracking mount.
It takes a bit of getting used to the reverse viewing perspective of its catadioptric design but this is no big deal. You might even laugh about it at times.
Over the years I have added plenty of things, too. This telescope and its mount are very receiving to new objects like mounts and lenses. And? It is still my telescope which I highly enjoy. I'm sure that you will, too. (Posted on 10/25/2018)
Review by:
After more than 3 years using a C8 on an AVX mount, I can say this is a great general purpose telescope. Because I only do visual observations, maybe an alt-az mount like the CPC would’ve been better for me but if I ever decide to start astro-photography, I’ll just have to put a small refractor on the AVX and start from there (sometylike an AT92 f5.5 would be just perfect for that purpose).
I’ve added a lot of accessories over these last 3 years but the first I would recommend is a 24mm 68 degree ocular like the Explore Scientific ES68 24mm. It provides the maximum field of view in the provided 1.25" diagonal. That max field of view is not that large so you’ll use such an ocular a lot in a C8. Next would be a good ocular close to 10mm (you’ll use it a lot on planets). (Posted on 10/6/2018)
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