Celestron Firstscope 114

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Brand and Model:Celestron Firstscope 114
Price ($USD):$249.95
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:114mm (4.5")
f Ratio:f/9
Focal Length:1000mm
Electric Power:none
Tripod:Adjustable Aluminum
Weight (lbs):15 lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):
Description:The Firstscope 114 standard series features three models. Only a few accessories differentiate them.

Each is a high quality, economical telescope with a superb optical system housed in a glossy black metal tube. The equatorial mount is quite stable, with setting circles and slow motion controls on both axes for easy, smooth
tracking. Strict adherence to Celestron's tough quality standards for manufacturing, assembly and testing ensures that each telescope performs
The damping time and rigidity of this aluminum tripod match that offered by the wood tripod of the other Firstscope 114 models, allowing those who prefer a metal tripod that option, without sacrificing performance. In fact, you'll find this aluminum tripod is much sturdier than those offered on competitive models.

Model #31048's economical 1¼" Eyepieces include a 20mm H Eyepiece
(45x), 4mm SR Eyepiece (225x) and 2x Barlow Lens.

Celestron Firstscope 114 Short
This version of the 4½" Newtonian telescope offers more portability than the standard longer tube Newtonian. The short tube of this model is only 18" long.

The equatorial mount is quite stable, with setting circles and slow motion
controls on both axes for easy, smooth tracking.

Celestron's Firstscope 114 Page
Affordable Astronomy's Review
Cloudy Nights' Review

Vote Highlights Vote
Celestron Firstscope 114
This was my first decent scope. Great views up to about 180x things started to soften up higher than that. Mount was smooth and fairly easy to use, but vibrations made it tough to focus at higher powers. Planets showed well in this scope as did open clusters. Recommended for folks just starting out.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:7 Ease of Use:8
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
By: jtpaoletti
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=142642

Celestron Firstscope 114
This is my first real telescope and i love it. It takes some getting used to at first but after you use it a few times its not too bad of a scope. The mount is a little wiggly sometimes but after you tighten all the knobs up and put some weight in the tray it doesnt move around alot. A very good scope for a newbie astronomer... like me! :)

Spokane, WA. USA

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:8 Ease of Use:8 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.102.169)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=368492

Celestron Firstscope 114


Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Mount:8 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.0.63)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=111704

Celestron Firstscope 114
Don't look for more reviews, just buy it, it is a good scope!!!!!

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.215.20)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40777

Celestron Firstscope 114
the sample i got can`t handle powers above 150x

Overall Rating: 6
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.133.180)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40774

Celestron Firstscope 114
I am very pleased with this scope. Jupiter is clean and clear. I can see some banding and the moons pleasently. Saturn is as always fun, but the image is a little fuzzy, but still fun to look at. The Orion's nebula on one night was awe-inspiring. The mount is a little weak and vibration is common unless you keep your hands away from it! But for the price, you can't go wrong. In hindsight, I would still buy this scope and recommend it to others :-)

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.68.151)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40773

Celestron Firstscope 114
I have had my Celestron Firstscope 114 for nearly a year and am quite happy with it's performance. Even after sitting in my friends car trunk and getting bumped around, the collimation is still good(the scope still gives tack sharp images of all celestrial objects observed.) The mount has proved rock solid(at least for me) and the light gathering power is quite amzing considering the area I live in.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.151.137)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40772

Celestron Firstscope 114
Bought the Firstscope 114 Premium model in August. 250 UK Pounds -- probably a bit steep compared to the US price. Celestron (and Meade) seem to have a very harsh pricing policy in Europe. So the telescope loses a mark on value for money!

My first telescope since some silly Tasco thing when I was 14. That never worked, and so I gave up with astronomy. Setting up the tripod is fairly straightforward for the most part, but there is some confusion between the supplied parts (aluminium CG3 tripod) and the diagram, which seems to be based on a lesser tripod. Also, the labelling of the parts on the mounting block was unclear, at least to a novice like me. Finally, the adjustment and positioning of the tube and the counterweights at optimum was not well explained and basically came down to trial and error. It took some nights before I had a really stable set up. Half a mark lost for these minor annoyances, and for the quality of the instructions 'leaflet', which seemed poor.

The optical tube went together easily. The telescope came nicely collimated, and seems to be robust enough to survive train journeys. The finish is nice, and not at all cheap looking. Non-astronomical friends who've seen the telescope all believe it to be 'serious hardware'.

The finderscope (6 x 30) is okay, but was out of focus. There was no obvious way to focus it, and the instructions said nothing about how to do it. An elastic band between the tube of the finder and the front shroud that holds the aperture lens seemed to help increase the focal length and make the whole thing tighter. Once tweaked around with the finder was sharp and bright, and perfectly useable. Half a mark lost for this small annoyance. Seems to be a little brighter than the Pentax 8 x 24 pocket binoculars I use with the telescope. Attaching the finder to the main tube is easy, but does need playing around with to get a good alignment.

The tripod is reasonably stable. With the legs fully extended wobbles take a good couple of seconds to die down. I have found that with the legs fully withdrawn, and the telescope much lower down, the system is much more steady, with wobbles much less persistent. The declination and RA adjustment cables are not that secure and the RA only winds round a few degrees before it stops. If you wind it too far the cable disengages and you need to mess around a bit to repair the damage. The setting circles are there but have so far defeated my ingenuity. Admittedly I am new to this, but I do have a PhD in science, so I'm not stupid. But the supplied instructions are hopeless.

There are two eyepieces, a 10 mm SMA (mag x 45) and a 200 mm Plossl (mag x 90). I also bought a Celestron branded Barlow and a Celestron branded moon filter, plus a sheet of Baader Planetarium solar filter. These extras have considerably enhanced this telescope.

Once assembled and in the back garden the telescope turned out to be a lot of fun to use. I can't compare it with very much, except really big telescopes. I'm in a country town, so while the air is reasonably clear there is some light pollution. The Milky Way is just visible to the naked eye.

The moon is of course superb, and amazes most anyone. At x 45 the moon almost fills the view, at x 90 you can only see a piece of it. The low magnification is most pleasing. The sun, using the film over the aperture, produces similar sized images. Sunspots were frequent over the last few months, an showed up well, and can clearly be divided into the darker umbra and the lighter, surrounding penumbra.

Only two planets have been clearly visible from my garden, Jupiter and Saturn. Both show up well, and stand magnification of x 180 using the 10 mm SMA and the Barlow. At that magnification Jupiter shows the main equatorial bands clearly, and periodically other bands too. This seems to be dependent on ambient conditions more than the telescope itself. The shadow of Io, for example, is clear during eclipses as well as the disk of the moon as it passes away from the disk of Jupiter. No sign of the Great Red Spot yet, but I gather it is pretty dim right now anyway. Saturn is also very pleasing. The shadow of the planet on the rings is clear, as is Cassini's Division most of the time. Banding is apparent, especially the contrast between the lighter equatorial region and the darker polar regions. I am not convinced I have seen the shadow of the ring on the planet yet.

Mars was visible on one early morning session. A salmon coloured disk, but no other features.

Double stars seem to resolve fairly well. Albireo cleanly and beautifully. Epsilon Lyra shows as a double at any magnification, but the subsequent divisions of each pair is only hinted at, although in good conditions each pair is obviously elongated at right angles to each other. Gamma Andromeda is usually clear under good skies.

Deep sky objects present a mixed bag, and probably reflect the aperture and the ambient light pollution rather than the quality or otherwise of the telescope. Generally only x 45, the lowest magnification provides acceptable results. Open clusters can be seen clearly but are dim. The Perseus Double cluster is nice. M 29 resolves into the brighter stars easily enough such that the pattern can be seen. M 35 and M 37 are not so clean but the basic shape can be seen. The Pleides are clear but no trace of haze around them. Of the globular clusters only a few have been looked at yet: M 13 and M 15 for example are visible but basically as fuzzy patches without much definition. Nebulae are less pleasing and are basically spotted rather than examined. M 27 and M 57 can be seen -- just -- as fuzzy star-like shapes; but frankly not far worse than the view through much larger telescopes in similar suburban or town skies. So far M 76 and M 97 have proved elusive. In Orion M 42 and M 43 are visible but no trace of colour yet. Again, this may be poor light conditions. The Andromeda Galaxy is perfectly visible, as a long grey smear, but the small companion galaxies are not obvious.

Overall this telescope has be fun to use and rewarding. The price is steep in the UK compared with the US, but even so it represents reasonable value for money. The optics seem to be good, and with the Barlow lens it tolerates a high magnification of planets, the sun, and the moon. The aperture clearly limits deep sky observing beyond simple notching-up a find.

Given the limited potential of a telescope this size can do, I have enjoyed it a lot, and been surprised by the nice views of the planets especially. It isn't a long term telescope -- already I feel the need for something larger and / or more portable. But as a Firstscope, as the name says, this is a good telescope. The instructions are barely adequate given this fact, and may in fact stump a novice. A good dealer prepared to spend a little time explaining and helping (in my case David Hinds, Ltd., of Tring, UK) seems essential.

Neale Monks, UK

Overall Rating: 8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.195.173)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40771

Celestron Firstscope 114
Since writing above review, have bought a combination Cheshire eyepiece and collimation tool. Doing the collimation by eye isn't enough. When the scope is collimated properly, it makes a world of difference to the performance of the instrument:

(1) Double stars are much easier now, Epsilon Lyrae splits into all four stars easily. Gamma Andromedae, Polaris, Rigel, the Trapezium in Orion -- none of these are difficult. Epsilon Bootis possible under the right conditions.

(2) Planetary perfomance is excellent and continues to impress me. Jupiter shows the equatorial bands, festoons and other bands more than hinted at, Great Red Spot visible. Mars nice when suitably placed. Polar caps and dark / light coloration of the disc obvioius. None of the planets are fuzzy, all are sharp, bright and easy on the eye even at high magnifications (x 180). It is a shame that the 10 mm SMA eyepiece supplied with the scope has such poor eye relief.

This scope is essentially a beginners lunar / planetary scope. The optics really are quite good, but the aperture is limiting. Too big and delicate for a "grab and go" scope, but too small to be a long-term instrument if you want to get good views of globular clusters, galaxies, etc.

NB! For more on this scope see my web page:


-- Neale Monks

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.226.220)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=40775

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