Celestron CGX 700 Maksutov Cassegrain Telescope
- Celestron 700 Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope with f/15 focal ratio provides high contrast views of the planets and lunar landscapes
- Perfect for serious planetary imagers and visual observers
- Celestron’s premium StarBright XLT coatings ensure maximum light transmission
- The CGX with its 55 lb load capacity is Celestron’s most innovative, state-of-the art, computerized equatorial mount
- The drive system utilizes low cog DC Servo motors with integrated optical encoders, belt and pulley motor connection
- Features spring-loaded steel worm gears supported by precision sealed bearings, and brass worm wheels for smooth, accurate slewing and tracking performance with little backlash
- Accessories included: 2” Visual Back, 2” Star Diagonal with 1.25” adapter, 28 mm eyepiece (2”), and an 8x50 finderscope
This Celestron 700 Maksutov-Cassegrain CGX telescope (CGX 700 Mak) is a specialized instrument designed for detailed, high contrast views of smaller celestial objects like the planets. This Maksutov-Cassegrain optical tube and sturdy equatorial mount and tripod will provide unparalleled views of the planets and up-close views of the lunar surface, including craters and maria. Maksutov scopes are also well suited to hunting smaller, fainter, deep sky objects such as globular clusters and planetary nebulae. Astronomers located in urban areas will appreciate the 700 Maksutov-Cassegrain CGX telescope's ability to bring out more contrast in celestial objects. Transporting the entire system to a dark site is simple. The optical tube, mount head, tripod, counterweight bar, and counterweight all disassemble, with no tools required, into separate manageable pieces.
The Maksutov is a catadioptric telescope, which means the optical design includes both a lens and a mirror. The light coming through this kind of scope passes through the corrector lens to the primary mirror and back to a spherical secondary mirror, then back down through a perforation in the primary mirror before it hits your eyepiece. Images are bright, sharp, and virtually free of chromatic aberration. This Maksutov-Cassegrain’s optical design (also known as a spot-Maksutov) 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. Also, the secondary spot is significantly smaller than a traditional Schmidt-Cassegrain secondary mirror, giving the Mak its signature high-contrast views.
The Celestron CGX is an incredibly sturdy equatorial mount which rigidly supports the 700 Mak. The mount was designed to be compact, so the instrument load is held closer to the R.A. axis, thus reducing torque from the load. It was also designed using FEA (Finite Element Analysis) software, which helped to optimize the stout structure of the mount. As a result, the CGX can support more weight than other mounts with similar mass. With its 55 lb load capacity, it can easily handle the 700 Mak, which weighs only 17 lb, along with a camera and any accessories. Expect a vibration-free setup, even in somewhat windy conditions. The 700 Mak connects using its CGE dovetail mounting bar.
The heavy-duty adjustable height tripod has 2” diameter steel legs with an extra-wide stance for improved stability. Graduated markings on the tripod legs make it easy to extend them to the same height and level the tripod.
This Celestron CGX mount is packed with functionality and conveniences that make imaging with the 700 Mak easy. The mount can be easily aligned to the Celestial Pole. The fully computerized mount will automatically “GoTo” any of the 40,000+ astronomical objects selected from the NexStar+ hand controller’s database and then track the object as it appears to move as the Earth rotates.
Designed with imaging in mind, the CGX motor drive system guarantees accurate tracking of objects. At the heart of the system are low cog DC servo motors with integrated optical encoders. The low cog design helps the motors run smoothly, while the integrated optical encoders provide accuracy. The motors connect to the worm gears with a belt-and-pulley system (instead of spur gears) to reduce gear backlash when the motor changes directions. The steel worm gears are supported by precision bearings and spring-loaded against a brass worm wheel, which also helps ensure a smooth drive system. Expect minimal backlash and no binding.
To track objects in the night sky, the mount must first be polar-aligned. Celestron makes this process easier than ever with the innovative All-Star Polar Alignment procedure. No extra equipment, such as a polar finder scope, is required. (But an optional polar alignment finder scope is available if desired.) The accurate alignment can usually be completed in about 15 minutes, even without a clear view of Polaris.
To mitigate periodic tracking errors, the CGX has Permanent Periodic Error Correction (PPEC). This allows you to run a routine to record the periodic errors only once; the recording is kept in memory, and subsequently corrects for the mount’s periodic tracking error. If an even higher level of tracking accuracy is desired, the CGX also has a dedicated autoguider port to connect an autoguiding camera directly to the mount.
For remote imaging, the mount needs a way to be controlled by an external computer. The CGX has two ways to connect to a computer via USB 2.0. It provides a USB port on the mount itself which is used exclusively to connect to a PC running the included Celestron PWI telescope control software. Developed in partnership with PlaneWave Instruments, the software has an intuitive graphical user interface and provides an excellent solution for remotely operating the mount. The included NexStar+ hand controller also has its own USB 2.0 port for computer connection; this can be used with optional third-party telescope control software by use of an ASCOM driver.
What's In The Box? The Celestron CGX 700 Maksutov Cassegrain Telescope comes complete with a 2” Visual Back, a 2” Star Diagonal with 1.25” adapter, a 28 mm wide-field 2” eyepiece, and a large 8x50 straight-through finderscope. The optical tube accommodates the larger 2” accessories.
Optical Tube Specifications:
|Aperture||180 mm (7.08")|
|Focal Length||2700 mm (106.3")|
|Focal Length of Eyepiece||28 mm (1.1") 2"|
|Magnification of Eyepiece||96x|
|Finderscope||8x50 Straight Through|
|Star Diagonal||2" with 1.25" adapter|
|Highest Useful Magnification||420x|
|Lowest Useful Magnification||67x|
|Limiting Stellar Magnitude||13.9|
|Resolution (Rayleigh)||0.64 arcsecond|
|Resolution (Dawes)||0.52 arcsecond|
|Light Gathering Power (Compared to human eye)||661x|
|Secondary Mirror Obstruction||40 mm (1.57")|
|Secondary Mirror Obstruction by Diameter||22%|
|Secondary Mirror Obstruction by Area||5%|
|Optical Coatings||StarBright XLT|
|Optical Tube Length||571.5 mm (22.5")|
|Optical Tube Diameter||222.25 mm (8.75")|
|Optical Tube Weight||19 lb (8.6 kg)|
|Dovetail||CGE Dovetail Bar|
|Mount Type||Computerized Equatorial|
|Instrument load capacity||55 lb (25 kg)|
|Height adjustment range (includes mount and tripod)||1200.15 mm - 1968.5 mm (47.25" - 77.5")|
|Tripod Leg Diameter||50.8 mm (2") Steel tripod with graduated markings on lower section|
|Latitude adjustment range||3° - 65°|
|Mount Head Weight||44 lb (20 kg)|
|Tripod Weight||19.2 lb (8.7 kg)|
|Weight of Counterweights||2 each x 11 lb|
|Slew Speeds||9 slew speeds - max speed 4°/second|
|Tracking Rates||Sidereal, Solar and Lunar|
|Tracking Modes||EQ North & EQ South|
|Dovetail Compatibility||Dual saddle plates (Vixen and CGE saddle)|
|Number of Auxiliary ports||2 Aux ports (Hand Control can use either Aux port)|
|USB Port||Yes, input for Mount and Hand Control|
|Power Requirements||12V DC, 4 amps|
|Motor Drive||DC servo motors|
|Alignment Procedures||2-Star Align, 1-Star Align, Solar System Align, Last Alignment, Quick Align|
|Periodic Error Correction||Yes|
|Computerized Hand Control||2 line x 18 character backlit Liquid Crystal Display, 19 LED backlit buttons, USB 2.0 port for PC connection|
|NexStar+ Database||40,000+ objects, 100 user defined programmable objects. Enhanced information on over 200 objects|
|Software||PWI Telescope Control Software, Celestron's Starry Night Special Edition Software, SkyPortal App|
|Total Kit Weight||104.2 lb (47.26 kg)|
|Included Items||700 Maksutov Cassegrain OTA | CGX Equatorial Head | CGX Tripod | Accessory Tray | 2 x 11 lbs counterweights | NexStar+ Hand Control | 8mm Allen Wrench | 12V DC Power Cable | Hand Control Holster|