This scope has an aperture of 5.1 inches, this is a very respectable size for a first scope. The general rule with aperture is that for every inch it delivers 50X magnification, hence the 260X. If you ever see a telescope advertised as having 600X do not buy it as these are generally poor quality scopes that cannot handle that kind of power. The scope is around 650mm in length to give it some kind of scale, it will seem much bigger if you buy it! The focal length of 650mm is also used to work out how much magnificaiton you will get from an eyepiece, for example, if you were to use a 10mm eyepiece you would get 65X, this is simply the focal length divded by the eyepiece. The primary mirror is parabolic which is not usually seen in the more beginner side of astronomy, this is a welcome addition as it offers better pictures. On the outside of the scope there is a red dot finder which makes locating objects in the eyepiece much easier. The eyepieces themselves are good quality and do the job but there are better out there.
The mount that is supplied is of a good quality but is a basic mount. It is reasonably sturdy and the accessory tray is a handy thing. The mount can be fiddly at times, especially when changing the angle which can become extremely tedious. It is not too heavy but it is by no means light. The RA drive is also a useful addition that is fitted into the right ascension axis. Its movement couteracts the movement of the earth which allows objects to stay in the eyepiece. Note that the RA drive can only be used when the scope is polar aligned. This process is not too difficult. The fine motion controls on the mount are very good and offer a very smooth motion.
Overall, this is a very good starter scope and offers good clear pictures. I have not had many clear nights but have already seen Saturn and the orion nebula as well as the obvious, the moon. The lunar eclipse looked much better through the scope! If you are looking to start astronomy this is a great starter.
The exciting new Sky-Watcher SynScanTM Alt-Azimuth GoTo Mount is a precision engineered ... more
instrument that will allow you to easily find and enjoy viewing night sky treasures, such as Planets, Nebulae, Star Clusters, Galaxies and much more. The SynScanTM AZ hand control allows you point your telescope at a specific object, or even tour the night sky at the touch of a button!! The user-friendly menu system allows automatic slewing to over 42,900+ objects. Even an inexperienced astronomer can master its variety of features in a few observing sessions. Combined with telescope OTA's of proven high quality, these Superb Packages are all you need to Explore the Universe to your Heart's Content!!