Celestron NexStar 4SE

Computerized catadioptric telescope with 102mm (4") aperture

  • Celestron NexStar 4SE


  • Celestron NexStar 4SE

    The NexStar computerized telescope is fun for the whole family


Our take on the Celestron NexStar 4SE

by Eric Angevine
Family using the Celestron NexStar 4SE

The Celestron NexStar 4SE is computerized and motorized so the whole family can enjoy astronomy.

Computerized for your convenience

Get the whole family involved in astronomy with the NexStar 4SE. It's computerized and motorized, so you can scan the stars with push-button ease. Aligning your telescope is simple and painless, as well: just center three bright objects in your eyepiece and press the align button, and your scope will do the rest. Use the built-in, removable NexStar+ hand control to locate over 40,000 celestial objects, or take a Sky Tour and let your telescope show you the best objects currently visible.

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A versatile, portable 'scope

Celestron's patented single fork arm mount is portable and makes setup quick and easy. You'll have no problem getting the NexStar SE to your favorite observing site, or setting it up quickly in your own backyard. There's enough light-gathering ability to observe the rings of Saturn, cloud bands on Jupiter, and geographic features on the surface of the Moon. When it comes to deep sky objects, take your 4SE to a dark-sky site and you'll see hundreds of pinpoint stars in the Hercules Globular Cluster, the spiral arms of the Whirlpool Galaxy, and more.


  • SkyAlign technology gets your telescope aligned and ready to observe in minutes
  • fully computerized, motorized mount with database of 40,000+ celestial objects automatically locates and tracks objects for you
  • breaks down into several lightweight and compact pieces for easy transport
  • let your telescope show you the best objects currently visible in Sky Tour mode
  • aperture: 102mm
  • 25mm eyepiece included (1-1/4" diameter)
  • highest useful magnification: 241X
  • 53X maximum magnification with included eyepiece
  • 1325mm focal length
  • light gathering power 212X that of the human eye
  • single fork arm altazimuth mount and tripod included
  • built-in adjustable equatorial wedge allows smooth tracking for astrophotography
  • built-in, removable hand controller included
  • 13.5" optical tube
  • weight: 21 lbs. (with tripod)
  • warranty: 2 years parts and labor
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • NexStar 4SE telescope (with lens cap and eyepiece cap)
  • Steel tripod
  • Center leg brace/accessory tray
  • 25mm Plössl eyepiece (with 2 caps)
  • Star Pointer finderscope
  • Self-adhesive bubble level
  • 6.5' RS232 control cable (RS232 9-pin connector on one end and an RJ14 connector on the other end)
  • 7.5" Camera Shutter cable (with RJ25 connector on one end and a female 2.5mm sub-mini jack on the other end)
  • Wrench
  • Product Registration card
  • Celestron The SkyX First Light Edition Astronomy Software CD-ROM
  • Remote Control Software CD-ROM
  • Owner's Manuals on CD-ROM
  • Instruction Manual
  • NexStar+ Hand Control instructions
  • Quick Set-up Guide
  • NexRemote Telescope Control Software installation instructions

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.


Overview: The NexStar 4SE, one of Celestron's signature "orange tube" telescopes, has a Maksutov-Cassegrain optical system, and comes with a built-in motor drive and a removable hand controller. It can be used for both terrestrial and celestial viewing. The 4SE comes with a sturdy pre-assembled steel tripod.

Maksutov-Cassergrain: The Maksutov-Cassergrain optical system uses a combination of mirrors and lenses, and is referred to as a compound or catadioptric telescope. This system uses large-diameter optics while maintaining very short tube lengths, which makes the telescope very portable. The Maksutov-Cassergrain design consists of a corrector plate, a spherical primary mirror, and a secondary mirror spot, requiring light rays to travel the length of the optical tube a total of three times.

StarPointer Finderscope: The telescope comes with a StarPointer red-dot finderscope which helps you to aim the telescope at a distant target. The finderscope must first be aligned with the telescope before use. This is done in the daytime by pointing the telescope at an object at least a quarter mile away, centering the object in the eyepiece, and aligning the finderscope's red-dot LED to the distant object. The StarPointer is powered by a CR2032 Lithium (coin-type) battery (supplied).

Hand Control: The NexStar 4SE comes with a removable, 19-button hand controller. It attaches to the telescope's fork arm via a coiled cord. The hand control has a backlit LCD window with a dual-line, 16-character display screen, direction keys, and catalog keys to help you search through the nearly 40,000-object database. The telescope comes with a 6.5' RS232 cable and NexRemote software that allow you to interface with a computer and control the telescope remotely.

Sky Align: During setup, Celestron's Sky Align technology can quickly and simply align the telescope. By pointing the telescope at three bright objects in the sky, and entering date, time, and your location on the hand control, the telescope automatically and accurately aligns itself. In addition to Sky Align, other alignment procedures include Auto Two-Star Align, Two-Star Align, One-Star Align (for locating large bright objects only), and Solar System Align. Using the tripod's built-in wedge, you can also perform an EQ (equatorial) Auto Align, EQ Two-star Align, EQ One-star Align and an EQ Solar System Align.

Motor Drive: The NexStar 4SE is equipped with a fully automated GoTo mount with a database of over 40,000 celestial objects. This allows you automatically locate the object you desire via the built-in motor drive. Once you have the object in the eyepiece, the motor drive will also help track the object as it moves across the sky. When the drive is properly set, the object you are viewing should be centered in the eyepiece for long periods of time.

Equatorial Wedge: The included tripod comes with a built-in equatorial wedge tilt plate with an adjustable angle. The tilt plate is used for polar aligning the telescope. There are two equatorial alignment modes, one for the northern hemisphere and one for the southern.

Eyepiece: The NexStar 4SE features a 25mm Plössl eyepiece, which gives the telescope a magnification of 52x. Plössl eyepieces have a 4-element lens, designed for low-to-high power observing. You can change the power of the telescope just by changing the eyepiece (ocular).

Camera Control: The telescope includes a camera control feature (along with a camera shutter cable) that allows you to remotely take a series of exposures using your DSLR body. The Camera Wizard allows you to save a list of up to nine targets. With a DSLR attached to the telescope, the NexStar 4SE will automatically slew to the specific targets and take a photo of each one.

Power Requirements: The NexStar 4SE can be powered by eight "AA" batteries (not included), which are stored in the telescope's base. In addition, you can operate the telescope using the optional PowerTank 12-volt power supply, or your vehicle's battery using the optional Car Battery Adapter (#18769).

Accessory Tray: The telescope comes with an accessory tray which provides a place to put extra eyepieces or other items while you're using the telescope.

Included Software: Included with the telescope is "TheSkyX -- First Light Edition" astronomy software on CD-ROM. The disc contains a 10,000 object database with printable sky maps and 75 enhanced images.


  • Optical Design: Maksutov-Cassegrain
  • Aperture: 102mm (4.02")
  • Focal Length: 1325mm (52")
  • Focal Ratio: f/13
  • Eyepiece Focal Length: 25mm
  • Eyepiece Magnification: 53x
  • Highest Useful Magnification: 241x
  • Lowest Useful Magnification: 15x
  • Optical Tube Length: 13.5"
  • Light Gathering Power: 212x (compared to human eye)
  • Weight (with tripod): 11 pounds
  • Overall Dimensions:
    • Length: 13-5/8"
    • Maximum Height (on tripod): 60" (including eyepiece)
    • Minimum Height (on tripod): 42" (including eyepiece)
    • Height (on base): 16-1/8" (including eyepiece)
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Celestron NexStar 4SE, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_87211049/Celestron-NexStar-4SE.html ).