iOptron CEM25P "Center Balanced" go-to German equatorial mount with 2" tripod


Availability: More on the way

With the added rigidity of a 2" tripod and the upgraded electronics from the iOptron CEM60, the iOptron CEM252 is a fantastically stable platform for visual use or photography.
Our Product #: CEM252
iOptron Product #: 7102P
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Product Description

The iOptron CEM252 center-balanced go-to equatorial mount has an upgraded tripod with 2" legs for added stability, is whisper quiet, light in weight, and uses up to 60% less power than other mounts in its category.

The iOptron "Z" design mount puts the weight of the payload over the mount's center of gravity, allowing for greater natural stability. Given its payload capacity, this means the "Z" designed mount is unusually light, a nice benefit when transporting and setting up at a remote observing site. Another mount feature is an adjustable counterweight bar to allow low latitude use without the counterweight hitting the tripod.  And polar aligning is quick and accessible all the time since the polar scope is not blocked by the declination shaft.

The iOptron CEM252 is equipped with the latest advanced GOTONOVA go-to technology, making it one of the most powerful and accurate go-to mounts available. Its go-to database includes over 150,000 objects. The hand control is intuitive to use and its large 4-line LCD screen simplifies the process of aligning your scope on the night sky and locating objects.

The iOptron CEM25 features a new design center-balanced CEM25P equatorial mount for a maximum payload of 27 lbs (12.3 kg) with mount-only weight of only 10.4 lbs (4.7 kg). It is a specialized astrophotography mount ideal for entry-level and intermediate astro-photographers. It has a spring loaded gear system with customer-adjustable loading force. Gear switches on both R.A. and DEC axes allow easy balancing when disengaged. A pivoting counterweight shaft allows for 0º latitude operation. There is a spring loaded Vixen-style saddle for mounting optical tubes with a V-style dovetail mounting bar.

The included iOptron AccuAlign calibrated polar scope has dark-field illumination and an easy polar alignment procedure, allowing for fast and accurate polar alignment. There is also a polar alignment routine in the software for those who can't see the Pole Star.

The iOptron mount's stepper motor has low power consumption for extended use in the field. The drive has low periodic error (< ± 10 arc seconds). It features new electronics and a control adapter from the more than twice as expensive iOptron CEM60. The controller features a built-in 32-channel Global Positioning System (GPS) and an integrated ST-4 autoguiding port. There is also a serial port for firmware upgrade and computer control.

The heavy-duty tripod weighs 17.6 lbs (8kg). It has 2" diaameter stainless steel tripod legs, with a die-cast metal tripod spreader and accessory tray.

Other CEM25 packages are available with a lighter 1.5" diameter leg tripod that decreases the tripod weight to 11 lbs (5kg), for those situations where saving weight is an important consideration. Also available optionally are a hard carry case for the equatorial head, a PowerWeight rechargeable 8 amp hour battery pack/counterweight combination, and an optional StarFi WiFi adapter for full function control via SmartPhone/Tablet/Computer.

Tech Details

Warranty 2 years


Review by:
I have an Ioptron iEQ 45 which I am quite happy with. I recently purchased a CEM25P with 2" legs as I needed a second mount that is easily portable for outreach activity, and camping. I have had it nearly a month and surprised how much I like it. It is small, light, and agile, but seems solid and trustworthy even with a 8" SCT mounted on it. The operation is much like my larger mount and the controls are similar. The GPS lock is faster than the older mount.
It is very easy to get a reasonable polar alignment (just a few minutes), It has only a little more vibration with the SCT than my big mount. I have not yet tested it for astrophotography , but suspect is is more appropriate for a smaller scope. I am not sure how much improvement was gained by the 2" legs, but given how light the head is, I suspect the larger legs were a good decision, The motors are quiet compared to other small mounts I have seen. The only thing I have not quite gotten used to is the clutch and tension knob are a bit confusing getting used to, but I have undetectable backlash when it is locked. The manual is a bit sparse, but adequate for a total beginner. (Ioptron support is outstanding) I believe it would be a great mount for a teenager, or occasional user as well.

(Posted on 10/7/2019)
Review by:
I am using this mount paired with a SW 80ED Pro telescope and an ZWO ASI 178MC main camera, and ZWO ASI 290 Guide camera, to perform astro-photography. The mount performs very well, and I get great guiding results often less than 1" RMS. I'm imaging at approx 0.84" and I can detect very little eccentricity in my stars. (Posted on 9/9/2019)
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