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Customer Review

254 of 261 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My 1st telescope...wow!!!, March 3, 2009
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This review is from: Orion 8945 SkyQuest XT8 Classic Dobsonian Telescope (Electronics)
Ordered this, a 13% moon filter, and 3x barlow. Took longer to unpack and take inventory of the parts than it did to put it together. Easy instructions and certainly well protected for shipping. Mount is easy to swing but not easy enough to get free wheeling.

Main mirror needed slight adjustment which took about 2 minutes to fix. Alignment with spotting scope was equally as easy. Overall, did not have any problems or any issues that weren't easily addressed by the instructions.

Did my first test tonight. I live a few miles east of Philadelphia and within a 1/4 mile of a ridiculously lit up Super Walmart. And the only place I could do a test was in my drive way between houses on a busy suburb street. We got 10 inches of snow last night and this was the only place that was solid.

Given my crappy location full of light pollution, my only real expectation tonight was to verify that the spotting scope and the main scope were in alignment. So I pointed at Orion's Nebula (M43) with my spotting scope and then took a look through the factory supplied 25mm eye piece with no barlow.

WOW!!! Even with my crappy location, M43 was amazing!!! I could easily see the nebula and make out the hues and colors. Equally amazing, my spotting scope and main scope were dead on!!

I then wheeled the scope towards Saturn which was only a few degrees over my neighbor's roof, a real no-no when it comes to stargazing. Well, if this was crappy conditions, all I can say is WOW!!! It was just as amazing. Even though the rings are tough to make out since the rings are right on in terms of their plane, it was still easy to see as well as plenty of moons circling. WOW!!!

Then tried the 13% moon filter on the crescent moon. WOW!!! Wish I could describe it better, but the first peek at this stuff is just amazing!! I cannot wait to get out this weekend to rural area and look at this stuff. I'm giving it 5 stars now simply because the product's quality right of the box was top shelf and what you can view out of it is simply amazing even with my awful light polluted location.

And even though I was only out testing for a few minutes, my neighbors wondered what I was doing and when I gave them a peek at Saturn, the ooooohs and aaaahs were priceless!!!

If this thing somehow broke by tommorrow, I feel like I already got my money's worth.
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Tracked by 7 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 22 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 29, 2009 7:26:40 PM PDT
I was thinking about purchasing this scope and was wondering if you are still happy with yours? Any problems with image contrast, coma problems or maintenance issues? I've always heard that reflector scopes are hard to use in light polluted areas but you seemed not to be experiencing any of that. Does that still hold true? Anyways, I look forward to hearing from you or anyone else who have had any experience with this particular telescope.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 22, 2010 7:33:20 AM PST
Raman says:
Hi Darrell, the XT8 is a very popular and well-regarded scope in the amateur community. (I have the smaller XT4.5 and really enjoy it.) Dobs are easy to take apart and mess around with, and as an inexpensive mass-market scope the XT8 responds well to tweaks and upgrades. However, many find it perfectly satisfactory right out of the box. I plan to do some work on my XT4.5 (flocking/blackening, focuser upgrade, etc.), but this is mostly out of fun rather than necessity.

Reflectors are no harder to use than any other type of scope in light pollution. I use my reflector in urban Chicago with gobs of light pollution.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 24, 2010 9:51:56 AM PST
Thanks Raman! I made the purchase for this scope and have nothing but good things to say about it. Easy to set up and use and just at the upper limits of portability which is a critical factor folks really need to consider especially if you live around light polluted skies and need to transport this scope elsewhere (I have a Honda Element and its very easy to get in and out of the vehicle). Solar system and deep sky views range from nice to stunning. I have also made some further lens purchases but folks should get very nice views of a wide variety of objects with the lens provided. However, a barlow lens or a 38mm Q70 Super Wide Angle lens are great add ons if its within ones budget and I seriously suggest a basic filter set for observing the moon and planets!

Posted on May 19, 2010 5:45:24 AM PDT
tjnamtiw says:
the original reviewer must work for Orion as he is just TOO enthused to be believable. Yes, the dob is a good scope but comments about seeing the colors of Orion's nebula just throw the review right out the window. What you see is BLACK AND WHITE! Even the Hubble sees black and white. Either the poster was smoking something good or having an LSD flashback.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 19, 2010 9:57:49 PM PDT
S. Lai says:
Uh...what?! Yes, I agree the original viewer is very optimistic and enthused about the scope but seeing colors with a telescope is perfectly possible! And yes, the Hubble Space Telescope takes pictures in color! It is a telescope for the visible spectrum, UV, and IR. Just search for ANY images taken by Hubble. Check out the gallery on wikipedia, which shows a picture of the Orion Nebula taken with an 8 inch scope and a DSLR: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orion_Nebula#Gallery. If you have a good reason to suspect the original viewer, that's fine but how about explaining the physical principles behind your statement that what you see is "black and white"? Please don't spread this kind of misinformation.

Posted on Jun 24, 2010 5:32:03 AM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Jul 4, 2010 4:14:05 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 9, 2010 6:26:28 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 9, 2010 6:33:15 AM PDT
P. Neeley says:
I tend to agree with T. Whitman on this one.
Although remarkable detail of the Orion Nebula can probably be viewed with this telescope, I find it highly doubtful that he could perceive the colors from this nebula. Perhaps the reviewer honestly thought he saw these colors.

From: http://www.waid-observatory.com/article-what_can_I_see.html
"Color in the Eyepiece:
With anything except bright stars such as the red giant Betelgeuse or some of the "carbon" stars and possibly the planets, one should not expect to see color. The color is there and long exposure photographs or CCD images do discern the color, but the color receptors in the eye are simply not sensitive enough to perceive them while observing nebulae or other deep sky objects using moderate or even larger aperture amateur telescopes. I understand color can be discerned in some brighter nebulae using apertures of approximately 25 inches."

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2010 10:29:02 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 11, 2010 10:30:52 AM PDT
E. A. Hanna says:
T. Witman,

Valid point, but your insulting comments toward the reviewer just negated it...."threw it out the window".....so to speak.
Besides, if he worked for Orion, wouldn't you think he'd know better?

How's that K-Mart "Focal" brand 60mm refractor workin' out for ya, BTW?

Posted on Oct 10, 2010 2:21:20 PM PDT
Bob Dobbs says:
Can someone comment on how much detail of Jupiter I can expect to see with this telescope? I am in a light-polluted environment, but Jupiter looks very bright these days. I assume I cannot see the moons. Can I see the banding of Jupiter?

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 10, 2010 7:02:06 PM PDT
E. A. Hanna says:
Good news Bob, you assumed wrong! ;)
You'll see the moons, the bands, and the red spot. And with the 1200mm focal length you should be able to view them from the mall parking lot on Black Friday.

Good luck.
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