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Model: SW_explorer_130MPart Number: 10713
"Our first test on the Sky-Watcher Explorer-130 was to check the collimation of the mirrors, which we found were well aligned. This scope has one of the largest mirrors in its price range, which is a great asset because it means it can gather more light...Optically, the quality of the field of view while studying the star Altair was very good using the supplied 25mm eyepiece. The star remained sharp across 80 per cent of the view, with only slight distortion close to the field edges….Taking everything into account, this telescope made observing the night sky enjoyable and relatively hassle free….great views coupled with ease of use."BBC Sky At Night Magazine
Review of non motorised version
Sky-Watcher Explorer 130 vs 130p
Note: The Winner badge and review applies to the non-motorised version. The 130M shown on this page is the same but includes a motor that silently tracks the target as it moves across the sky, keeping it in the eyepiece field of view. This is especially useful when observing at high magnifications or when observing with company. It is also rather handy if the clouds roll over because the motor will continue to track while you pour yourself a coffee.
We bought the Skywatcher 130M EQ2 almost exactly one year ago. It was our first venture into astronomy & I didn't want to spend too much. Bought as a birthday present for my wife & starting from scratch, I've found it s fairly steep but nonetheless rewarding learning curve. The Optical quality is impressive & over the last year I've not needed to alter the collimation. With the eyepieces supplied, we've managed to get some spectacular views of the lunar surface, the pleiades and the double cluster, plus we've seen Mars, Saturn, Jupiter & the Andromeda galaxy.You do get what you pay for however... We soon replaced the red dot finder with a 9x50 erecting Finderscope & Telrad, which made star hopping easier and quickly learnt that the RA/Dec dials were largely decorative. Getting good polar alignment was also frustrating at first, until I realised that the Latitude scale was out by about 4 degrees... Longitude adjustment is also a bit hit & miss with it being difficult to tighten the bolt sufficiently so the head doesn't move whilst observing. (I also learnt the hard way that the slow-motion DEC control has finite travel!)With a Finderscope & Telrad added, it was still possible to balance the scope without any problem, although it did mean that the counter-weight had to be near the end of the bar. Unlike higher-end scopes, the weight's tightening-bolt doesn't have a plastic tip, so tends to scratch the bar, and there is a little slack between the bar & mount. The motorized clock drive, does the job too, though it's design is a little clunky & it's easy to knock the scope off target when engaging it. Tracking is sufficient for visual observing, but Polar alignment is quite rough and the EQ-2 isn't sufficient for any astrophotography. That said, we did get some nice eyepiece projection images of the moon and the Orion nebula (albeit with star trailing), with an ordinary digital compact camera.Fixing the scope to the mount, means fully opening the two tube rings which are fixed to the head, so putting a couple of bits of PVC electrical tape on the Optical Tube was useful to quickly get the tube positioned. It's also easy to slacken the rings to rotate the tube so that the eyepiece is in a more comfortable position - usually without upsetting the balance.I don't mean to sound negative - for the money - this is an incredible scope and it was well worth it, but you do get what you pay for. It's also worth mentioning that in the dozen or so orders we've placed with FLO over the last year, the customer service has been excellent on all occasions...
A wonderful telescope for my space-obssessed teenage daughter. Tonight she was thrilled to have a sharp close up view of the moon's craters. Flo were fantastic at giving advice on choosing the model, setting up and didn't quibble about promptly replacing a damaged part. Highly recommend.
This is a very good telescope with a motor so it tracks the stars and planets. Once polar aligned, it tracks very good allowing the object to stay in the eyepiece or webcam-for planet, moon and solar imaging- for a good amount of time. This telescope allows you to see many objects however the focuser could be improved but is good enough for a first time telescope. I would recommend this to anyone just starting astronomy as it is a good price for what you get
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