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If, like me, you own a Celestron NexStar telescope, you should really consider checking out the “precise goto” menu option. It’s a real life saver in light polluted surroundings. As you may have experienced yourself, most of the times, even the best aligned telescope does not exactly center objects you slew to. “Precise goto” will make you find even the faintest objects and center them for you! It’s like magic!

1) First you align the telescope the way you always do. Lately I prefer the auto two star method, because it’s faster than sky align. Everyone knows (or should know) a few bright stars, and you can always look them up on a sky chart anyway. Having auto two star aligned the scope, make sure it more or less accurately slews to an object.

2) From the menu choose precise goto – database. You can now find any currently visible object just as you would normally, but the NexStar computer will compute a nearby bright star and slew to it first.

3) Center the star that precise goto has selected for you. The motors are already at a slow speed and the star should already have been visible. If you’ve centered the star, press enter and the NexStar will immediately slew to the selected object, e.g. a dim nebula. Because the star you’ve centered was pretty much nearby the object, the NexStar is much more precise (hence the name) and the object you’re searching for will have been centered with much better precision.

4 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] like comet Hartley 2, I found this very faint (magnitude comet C/2009 P1 Garrad using PRECISE GOTO on my Celestron NexStar 5SE with the exact coordinates of C/2009 P1 Garrad at that time, according […]

  2. […] Voila! Your NexStar is now polar aligned. For more accuracy, you can still use “Precise GOTO“. In fact, that’s how I found the above Messier 81. My first trial with the regular […]

  3. […] your telescope is now aligned even better than a standard EQ North Align. You may still have to use Precise GOTO, which is one of the best features of the NexStar telescope. It helped me find this comet and even […]

  4. […] and this figure might be off. It’s just a guess of how the comet will behave. To use the Precise GOTO feature of my Celestron NexStar 5SE telescope, I need the exact RA (right ascension) and DEC (declination) […]

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