5.I highly recomend
4. Good Value&Product
3. Not my favorite chioce
2. I'd think twice about it
1. Bad Product; Terrible
SkyProdigy 90 Telescope Review
The Celestron SkyProdigy series are great for beginning astronomers and even for more advanced sky watchers who are tired of having to enter the date, time, latitude, longitude every time that start up their telescope and then still have to go on to align the scope with two or three objects before they can finally get down to their observing. The SkyProdigy does all the work for you- you just need some open sky and some stars. You turn it on, point it at a patch of sky and let it do its thing. It seems to take about 3 to 5 minutes during which it using a built-in digital camera and computer to take three or more pictures of the sky and then analyze those pictures to determine all the information about time and location that you would otherwise have to enter manually.
I got the SkyProdigy 90 a month ago and found it easy to assemble- took maybe 10 minutes. The actual telescope in the SkyProdigy 90 is a nice little SCT (Schmidt Cassegrain Telescope) which gives the viewing results of a much longer telescope. It uses smoke and mirrors (mostly mirrors) to bounce the light back and forth in the telescope tube to simulate a longer scope. This lets you have a compact and easily transportable telescope that gives you good magnification and views.
As important and the tubing it supports is the mount. This is what makes the SkyProdigy a SkyProdigy. The digital camera and all the electronics that do the amazing auto-alignment are contained in the mount. I also learned that it is possible to attach different telescopes to the mount and still use the SkyProdigy alignment feature. Nice to know when you want to upgrade to a larger telescope.
So using the telescope in the daytime you point it using the wired remote control that directs the motors in the mount to move up, down, right left. The controls seemed fairly precise to me- and you can customize the speed that the motors move. At night you can manually point the telescope with the controls or access a database of 4000 objects that the telescope knows about and can point right to. It also only offers to point at objects that are actually in the sky at the time. Pretty smart. You can choose from categories like Solar System, Galaxies, Nebula, etc. Then you scroll through a list of objects with that category and select one to have the telescope point to. Another nifty feature is the "identify" option that you can use to find out what something is that you see in the sky. You manually align the telescope to point at an unknown object in the sky and then press the identify button and it will tell the name of the star/planet/nebula, etc (UFOs not withstanding).
After using this scope and mount for a month I feel it is really one of the best telescopes for a beginning sky watchers- even kids as young as 10 can set it up, move it around, get it aligned and get on with looking at the wonders of the sky.
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Watch a video of me setting up my SkyProdigy Telescope