One of the most well known budget telescopes available right now, the Celestron 114 EQ Powerseeker has had its critics over the years. For amateur astronomers who are just getting started with their stargazing journey, you’re probably not going to want to spend an awful lot on a new telescope.
And if this is you, then the Powerseeker series might be the perfect choice. It’s a decent telescope with a spherical primary mirror, slow motion knobs and well-made equatorial mount. Let’s take a look at it in closer detail.
Celestron 114 EQ Powerseeker review
The Powerseeker 114EQ on the surface looks like any other Newtonian reflector, and you’d be mistaken for thinking it is one. But actually it’s a little bit different to your standard Newt, however this actually means that it’s probably half the size it would be if it were a true Newtonian. This enables it to be a little more compact, and it actually only weighs 17lbs.
- Celestron AstroMaster 114EQ 114mm f/8.8 Newtonian Reflector Telescope with German Equatorial Mount - Tripod and Mount - 20mm Eyepiece with Built-In Erect Image Corrector - Standard 10mm Eyepiece - Red-Dot Finderscope - Download Code
- Manual German equatorial mount with setting circles to accurately locate and track sky objects
- Adjustable, full height steel tripod with deluxe accessory tray
It’s very similar to the Powerseeker 127EQ, which made it onto our list of the best telescopes under $300 (you can see the full guide here). Because of its high aperture, it’s not going to be great for getting a wide view of the night sky, though that’s not really what we’re looking for from a telescope like this.
But there’s definitely more we want to look at where the Powerseeker 114 EQ is concerned, but in a positive and negative light.
Pros and Cons
- It is a very cheap telescope, and when you compare it to other similarly priced refractor telescopes, it’s going to be much more powerful. This is the benefit of going for a reflector instead of a refractor, as they tend to have a higher aperture and give you the maximum value for your cash.
- The telescope itself is fairly lightweight when you consider the size of the optical tube. This means that although it’s not really fully portable, it’s very easy for you to pack the telescope up and fit it into the back of your car.
- Although there are areas of the telescope that are pretty weak, the image quality is overall definitely above average. I’m not going to say it’s perfect – far from it – but actually it’s a pretty respectable telescope that’ll allow you to see the moon, stars and even has enough power to let you get a glimpse of some planets too.
- The main negative aspect of this telescope is that it’s going to be nowhere near powerful enough for people looking for a more advanced experience. It is a beginners telescope, and whilst it does fulfil that criteria pretty well, more intermediate or advanced astronomers will want to look for something a little better.
- In comparison to other telescopes within a similar price range, the build quality is actually pretty poor. You’re not going to be expecting a lot when you opt for a telescope at this cost, but I do think that there are better options out there for people that want to do a little more research when finding a telescope.
- It can take some time to set this telescope up, which isn’t ideal if you’re a beginner and this is your very first telescope. Although in saying this, it’s a common feature in many reflector telescopes, so it can pay to get used to it as soon as possible.
When compared to more powerful telescopes you’re not going to be impressed, but that’s not the point of the Powerseeker. Its intention is to provide a cheap and fun experience for its users, which it manages to do pretty well. So, if you’ve got the time to make sure that it’s fully aligned and set up properly, then there’s no reason why you should be avoiding the Powerseeker as a choice of telescope.