Refractors are known for their crisp, high contrast views of the Moon and planets and the Astromaster 90 delivers sharp views right out of the box. The low power 20mm eyepiece (50X magnification) nicely frames the moon, while the high power 10mm eyepiece (100X magnification) delivers a crisp close up image full of detail. The sharp Achromatic optics of the Astromaster 90 EQ give me memorable views night after night. On a moonless night I like the way the 20mm eyepiece frames the ghostly glow of the Orion Nebula. Zooming in with the 10mm eyepiece, I can easily pick out all four stars of the Orion Nebula’s embedded quadruple star the Trapezium. Another night I was treated to a nice view as one of Jupiter’s moons cast its shadow on Jupiter’s cloud tops.
The Equatorial mount included with the Astromaster 90 EQ is designed to help track stars and planets at high power. When I set up the telescope, I simply point the polar axis at Polaris, the North Star. This makes it easy to keep celestial objects in the field of view by turning one slow motion knob. Celestron also offers the AstroMaster 90 EQ MD which includes a battery powered motor for automatic tracking. The CG-3 equatorial mount is a little wobbly when the legs are fully extended, but that’s normal for any large telescope in this price range. The built in “Star-Pointer” finder allows me to aim the telescope by aligning an illuminated red dot with the target. This works OK for bright objects like the Moon and planets, but it’s not so easy to use on fainter deep space objects. --Jeff Phillips
Jupiter showing the shadow of Ganymede, July 22, approx 400X.
Double star Albireo in Cygnus, July 28, approx 200X
The Moon as seen at 50X with Canon Powershot camera.
The Moon as seen at 200X with Neximage camera