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Posted by Scott Simon on March 19, 2002 03:05:30 UTC

I own a Celestron SCT 8" G8 non-goto mounted on a equitorial mount with dual drive servo's and a Nexstar 80GT "goto". Personally the Gto's are faster and less time consuming initially if you can't navigate by constellations and using a Sky Atlas 2000. I find the non-GPS "goto's" a pain in the butt to align. They are never really that close when slewing to a target.

I can align and level my equitorial mounted 8" much faster. I also like the laser finder scope I mounted on top of my 8" SCT. Since I know the constellations and can navigate a Sky map, I prefer and recommend non-goto telescopes. New astronomer's would die if their goto's stopped working. I think it is an essential part of Astronomy to learn the Constellations.

Now back to the two scopes. Essentially, both SCT's are basically the same. The Global Plotting System is faster to setup of the two. You still have to do an alignment in reference to your location. I know people who have the LX-200 and swear by it. But when you go to Messier events. "Goto's" are generally not allowed for club competition at those star parties. You can use them just not in competition. In my opinion some of the older SCT's are the better telescopes. Couple them with 2" diagonals and EP's and they are awesome. Besides, you get to know the Sky.

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