This is a perfect pairing of an incredibly sturdy and capable equatorial mount with clear and precise optics. This Celestron package brings the world-renowned CGEM II (Computerized German equatorial mount) together with the 7-inch Maksutov-Cassegrain OTA for one of the best visual or astrophotography systems available. With the mount able to carry a payload up to 40-pounds, you're free to customize this setup however best suits your goals.
Celestron CGEM II EQ Mount
The Celestron CGEM II EQ Mount is renowned among the astronomy and astrophotography community. Capable of carrying high-end and heavy-duty telescope systems up to 40 pounds, the CGEM II (also known as CGEM2) is able to accommodate most astronomers from those just starting out, to those who are buying their last mount. This equatorial mount is one of the best for both imaging and visual observing thanks to its vibration-free and durable design. Tracking is guaranteed to be smooth so that both viewing experience and your images will not be tarnished. Opt for the exceptional Celestron CGEM II when considering your next upgrade.
Celestron CGEM II EQ Mount Head Design
Built with a comfortable user experience in mind, the CGEM II is ergonomically friendly when it comes to both use and portability. Convenient to carry and easy to adjust with large Altitude and Azimuth knobs, you'll never again have to deal with the nuisance of small, flimsy knobs when getting ready for a night of imaging or stargazing. As an added bonus, you're essentially able to use any telescope OTA desired with this mount thanks to the dual saddle design. Whether you're employing a V-style/CG-5 dovetail, or a D-style/CGE style, the CGEM II is perfectly compatible.
Easy Alignment and Correction
Celestron has implemented the innovative polar alignment procedure called All-Star, which allows you to choose any bright star for the mount to calculate its location. This makes for a smooth alignment process and gets rid of a lot of the hassle that comes with lower-end mounts. Another great feature of the CGEM-II, sure to please astro-imagers, is the Permanent Periodic Error Correction (PPEC) which lets you train the worm gears to effectively correct themselves the more they're used.
For objects near the Meridian (imaginary line passing from North to South), the CGEM-II mount will track well past the Meridian for uninterrupted imaging. With a robust database with over 40,000 objects, 400 user-defined programmable objects, and enhanced information on over 200 objects, the CGEM II has all bases covered to get rid of any hassle in the hobby.
Highlighted Features of the Celestron CGEM II EQ Mount
- USB 2.0 port on hand control for direct links to a PC via ASCOM supported software.
- Internal cabling throughout for worry-free remote operation.
- Low cog DC Servo motor with integrated optical encoders offer smooth, quiet operation.
- Tracking past the Meridian
- Permanent Periodic Error Correction
- Long clutch levers for easy adjustment
- Solar System alignment for day use
- Custom Rate 9 feature allows you to set a maximum slew rate.
- Tandem mode allows you to star align the mount even when positioned for tandem scope use.
- Includes NexRemote telescope control software, for advanced control of the telescope via computer.
- GPS-compatible with optional SkySync GPS Accessory.
Celestron 700 Maksutov-Cassegrain CGX telescope (CGX 700 Mak)
This is a specialized instrument designed for detailed, high contrast views of smaller celestial objects like the planets. With the Maksutov-Cassegrain optical tube and sturdy equatorial mount and tripod, this kit will provide unparalleled views of the planets and up-close views of the lunar surface, including craters and maria. Maks is also well suited for capturing smaller, fainter, deep-sky objects such as globular clusters and planetary nebulae. Astronomers located in urban settings will appreciate the Mak's ability to bring out more contrast in celestial objects. Transporting the entire system to a dark site is not a problem either. The optical tube, mount head, tripod, counterweight bar, and counterweight all disassemble, with no tools required, into separate manageable pieces.
Celestron 700 Maksutov-Cassegrain Optical Design
The Mak is a catadioptric telescope, which means the optical design includes both a lens and a mirror. The light coming through a Mak passes through the corrector lens to the primary mirror and back to a spherical secondary mirror before it hits your eyepiece. Images are bright, sharp, and virtually free of chromatic aberration.
The Maksutov-Cassegrain optical design offers several unique benefits. Instead of a secondary mirror, the Mak features a "secondary spot" of reflective coating applied directly to the inside of the corrector plate. Because of this, the telescope does not require frequent collimation like a Schmidt-Cassegrain. This secondary spot is significantly smaller than a traditional Schmidt-Cassegrain secondary mirror, allowing you to capture the signature high-contrast views offered by the Maksutov-Cassegrain design.
An important thing to note about Maksutov-Cassegrain telescopes when compared to a Schmidt-Cassegrain of the same aperture; the larger, heavier Maksutov corrector plate will take longer to cool down and adjust to ambient air temperatures.