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Skywatcher Skymax 127 mm Maksutov-Cassegrain Telescope OTA - S11520
About the Sky-Watcher Skymax 127 mm Maksutov-Cassegrain Telescope
Maksutov-Cassegrain telescopes are all about portability, sharp, contrasty images, and the flexibility to use them as a telescope for astronomy, a spotting scope for terrestrial use, a lens for photography, or a travel companion for all three! The Sky-Watcher 127 mm Maksutov-Cassegrain is 12.5” long (15" with the diagonal installed) and weighs 9.7 lb. with accessories, but it uses a large 5” lens system to do the job of gathering light so you can see faint objects millions of light years away. A 127 mm telescope will gather 56% more light than a 102 mm, so this 5” Maksutov is quite a step up from the 4” model. The classic long focal length of f/12 will give you inky dark background skies so that celestial targets stand out beautifully.
The Skymax 127 comes with a nice selection of accessories, including a 2” 90-degree star diagonal, a 28 mm 2” LET eyepiece, a 6 x 30 straight-through finder for the location and centering of objects, and a Vixen-style dovetail plate, which allows you to mount your telescope on a wide variety of alt-azimuth or equatorial mounts.
Why a Maksutov-Cassegrain Telescope?
Maksutov-Cassegrain telescopes are super popular, and for good reason! First of all, they are very portable for the size of their optics. With a relatively short, lightweight optical tube, the 5” Maksutov-Cassegrain is portable enough to fit under your seat on a plane. Add a lightweight alt-azimuth mount and you’ve got the perfect set-up for day or night, whether you are traveling across the globe to see your first total eclipse of the Sun or heading out to your backyard for a peaceful hour of astronomy.
But let’s face it, portability isn’t everything! You still need enough light-gathering to see the objects you wish to look at, whether that object is Saturn, the Orion Nebula, a boat on the horizon at dusk, or a deer resting in the shade of an oak tree. 127 mm of aperture is large enough to enjoy the Moon and planets as well as a wide array of deep-sky objects, and it is more than enough for most terrestrial applications.
Another consideration when choosing a telescope or spotting scope is how sharp the optics are. This is where the Sky-Watcher Maksutov-Cassegrain really shines! A Mak-Cass uses both mirrors and lenses to gather and focus light, and this design is famous for sharp, high-contrast “refractor-like” images. Then why not just buy a refractor and be done with it? Because a 5” f/12 refractor would be way longer, much heavier, and therefore would require a bigger, more expensive mount to hold it. There goes your portability! No, if you want a portable telescope or spotting scope that has bright, sharp images with a beautiful black background sky (an effect of the long f/12 focal length), then you should seriously consider the Sky-Watcher 5” Maksutov-Cassegrain! And since Sky-Watcher makes a full line of Maksutov-Cassegrains, from the ultra-compact 90 mm to the full-sized 180 mm (7”), you can choose the aperture that’s right for you if you feel you need something a tad smaller or a lot bigger. In fact, some people have a large telescope for deep-sky work and a smaller telescope for travel and those times when you want to “grab and go”. However, whether this is your first telescope or your tenth, we know you will enjoy the amazing flexibility of the 127 mm Skywatcher Skymax!
Skymax 127 Specs
- Optical Design: Maksutov-Cassegrain
- Aperture: 127 mm (5 in)
- Focal Length: 1500 mm
- Focal Ratio: f/12
- Included Eyepieces: 2” 28 mm LET
- Finderscope: 6 x 30 Straight-Through
- Diagonal: 2” 90 degree star diagonal
- Highest Useful Magnification: 254x
- Optical Coatings: Fully multi-coated
- Tube Weight: 9.7 lb.
- Tube Length: 12.5” (15" with diagonal)
- Tube Width: 5.75”