This kit combines the 8” Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Astrograph (RASA) with the strong-yet-portable Advanced VX (AVX) German equatorial mount. Simply add a mirrorless camera and this package offers everything you need to take spectacular images of wide-field deep sky objects.
RASA Performance Made for Everyone
Capture spectacular wide-field deep sky images in seconds with Celestron’s new portable astrograph, the 8” Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Astrograph (RASA). This incredibly fast f/2.0 system is the perfect companion to today’s color astronomical CMOS cameras, smaller CCD cameras, and mirrorless cameras. Thanks to its fast focal ratio and patented optical design, you can produce sharp, detailed images and, in many cases, skip the autoguider completely. Weighing in at just 17 pounds, it’s easy to transport your 8” RASA to the most remote dark sky locations.
The 8” RASA is an imaging telescope that delivers a flat field without optical aberrations for razor sharp stars across a wide field of view. It can capture stunning deep-sky astronomical images without the challenges typically presented by longer focal length instruments at a fraction of the cost of those systems.
The latest addition to the RASA family, this 8” version is a much more portable and affordable version of the heralded RASA 11, which was introduced to much acclaim in 2014. With the 8” RASA joining the lineup, a wider range of astroimagers can enjoy the benefits of the RASA design. It has many of the same thoughtfully designed features as its “big brother”, RASA 11, including the integrated air-cooling system, internal filter mount, and sturdy CGE dovetail mounting bar.
Designed purely for imaging, the 8” RASA cannot be used visually. The prime focus focal plane is located at the front of the optical system, so it cannot accommodate a traditional eyepiece.
Shorter Exposure Times and Virtual “Real-Time” Observing
Since it is an F/2.0 optical system, imagers can use shorter exposure times to capture detail in faint objects. When combined with sensitive cameras and the proper “live stacking” software, the 8” RASA can provide an almost real-time observing experience. View images on a computer instantly that are brighter and more detailed than can be seen in much bigger telescopes with the naked eye.
Because shorter exposure times are possible, your equatorial mount won’t need to accurately track over extended periods. The 8” RASA’s relatively short 400mm focal length also lessens equatorial tracking demands. In many cases, autoguiding will not be required. Weighing only 17 lb, this optical tube pairs perfectly with a wide variety of mounts.
Ultra-Stable Focus System
With the launch of the 8” RASA, Celestron is unveiling a new focuser design that mitigates lateral movement of the primary mirror when focusing, slewing, or tracking with the astrograph. Focusing is easier, more accurate, and more stable than ever. The key to the Ultra-Stable Focus System is a precision linear ball bearing, which is tested during assembly to ensure optimal results.
Built for Today’s Latest Cameras
Unlike the larger RASAs that work with DSLR and large CCD cameras, the 8” model was designed with color astronomical CMOS cameras, smaller CCD cameras, and mirrorless cameras in mind. The telescope does not work with standard DSLR cameras. It is optimized for sensors with up to a 22mm diagonal, but performs well with sensors up to 32mm diagonal. The APS-C sized sensors used in many mirrorless cameras are a good choice. 42mm full frame sensors will also work, but performance will be poor at the edges of the sensor and field illumination will be reduced. Additionally, we do not recommend pairing RASA 8 with any camera body more than 4” in diameter. See the chart below to determine if your camera is compatible with RASA 8.
Supported Cameras, and Required Adapter
- Astronomical CMOS/CCD camera with C-mount; C-mount adapter (included)
- Astronomical CMOS/CCD camera with M42-thread mount; M42 adapter (included) with M42 extension tubes (not included)
- Astronomical CMOS/CCD camera with other mount; Custom camera adapter
- Canon mirrorless with APS-C sensor; Canon mirrorless adapter (sold separately)
- Sony mirrorless with APS-C sensor; Sony mirrorless adapter (sold separately)
- Canon mirrorless with full frame (42mm) sensor (not optimized across full sensor); Canon mirrorless adapter(sold separately)
- Sony mirrorless with full frame (42mm) sensor (not optimized acrossfull sensor); Sony mirrorless adapter(sold separately)
- DSLRs NOT SUPPORTED
Advanced VX & Tripod
The Advanced VX mount is designed to provide superior performance for smaller telescopes while taking advantage of Celestron’s most advanced technologies: All-Star Polar Alignment, Celestron PWI telescope control software, SkyAlign, and permanently programmable periodic error correction (PPEC).
If you’re an experienced imager, you’ll love taking this portable mount to a dark sky site and enjoying all the conveniences of a larger observatory mount. Or, if you’re new to imaging, Advanced VX will help you get started with the hobby and keep up with your needs for years to come.
The Advanced VX is the smallest of Celestron’s German equatorial mounts. The computerized GoTo capability automatically tracks objects as they move across the night sky. The Advanced VX mount includes ports for a hand control, an autoguider, and 2 AUX ports for optional accessories. The NexStar+ hand control gives you instant access to all the functions your mount has to offer. With automatic slewing and menu descriptions, astronomers of all skill levels can master this mount in just a few observing sessions. The Advanced VX also has an impressive tripod for its class with 2”-diameter steel tripod legs, providing an extra-wide stance for improved stability.
The payload capacity for the Advanced VX is 30 lb. It offers a sturdy platform for the 8” Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Astrograph optical tube, even when paired with optional accessories like StarSense AutoAlign, Focus Motor, a finderscope, and a camera. Celestron's payload capacity does not include the weight of the counterweights.
As of early 2019, Advanced VX mounts now include a new dual saddle plate that accommodates both CG-5 and CGE-style dovetails. Switching between the two saddle plates is as simple as moving the hand knobs into a separate set of holes. Now you can use your Advanced VX mount not only with the 8” RASA, but virtually any optical tube within Advanced VX’s weight limit. Compatible with Vixen format dovetails 100mm or longer, not compatible with Losmandy D format plates (regardless of plate manufacturer).
- Celestron PWI Telescope Control Software
- Your Ultimate Astronomy Software Suite
All current Celestron computerized telescopes include Celestron PWI (CPWI), the most advanced astronomy software suite provided with any consumer-grade telescope. Celestron’s experts co-developed CPWI with the engineers at PlaneWave Instruments. The result is an all-in-one solution offering you many of the same features used on PlaneWave’s observatory-class telescopes.
- Graphical planetarium interface with PointXP advanced mount modelling allows you to add 100+ points to your alignment model for the most accurate pointing and tracking possible
- Ideal for remote observatory setups: save and re-load your alignment and park your scope
- Provides a complete ASCOM telescope interface to allow control of the telescope from third party software applications
Also included with your purchase is a free download of Celestron’s Starry Night Special Edition Software. This advanced software by Simulation Curriculum offers detailed information about celestial objects and helps you plan your next observing or imaging session. The Special Edition software also includes telescope control via your PC.
The Advanced VX RASA 8 comes complete with a M42 camera adapter, C-thread camera adapter, and fan battery pack.
Includes "The Beginners Guide to Using Telescopes" written by our knowledgeable staff.
- Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Optical Design – 8” f/2.2 flat field imaging system with rare-earth glass for outstanding images free of optical defects like field curvature, coma, astigmatism and chromatic aberration across an entire APS-C sensor
- Unlike the larger RASAs that work with DSLR and large CCD cameras, the 8” model was designed with color astronomical CMOS cameras, smaller CCD cameras, and mirrorless cameras in mind; does not work with standard DSLR cameras
- NEW Ultra-Stable Focus System – precision linear ball bearing virtually eliminates image shift
- Integrated air-cooling system – 12V DC MagLev fan reduces cooldown time and provides optimal air flow while filtering out dust
- Internal filter mount – seamlessly accommodates a light pollution imaging filter into the optical path
- Performs over a wider spectral range than most telescopes, from 390-800 nm, so more of the light passing through the astrograph is in sharp focus
- Advanced VX, the most compact and portable of Celestron’s German equatorial mounts, offers a maximum instrument capacity of 30 lb with the same rigidity as our larger mounts and minimal flexure
- This mount offers every feature an astroimager wants: PEC, an autoguider port, the ability to image across the meridian, and more
- NEW dual saddle plate is compatible with narrow CG-5 dovetails and wider CGE dovetail. Also compatible with Vixen format dovetails longer than 100mm, but not compatible with Losmandy D format plates
- Nexstar computer drive locates and tracks objects automatically
- Integer gear ratios and permanently programmable Periodic Error Correction eliminates recurring track errors from the worm gear
- New motors offer improved tracking performance and provide more power to overcome load imbalances
- Updated industrial design offers more rigidity, less flexure and improved aesthetics
- New design allows viewing or imaging across the meridian without interference from the motors housings
- Improved latitude range can be used between 7° – 77° latitude
- Mount now accepts Vixen and CG dovetail bars
- NexStar+ hand control offers improved electronics with increased memory for future expansion
- Multiple language programming (English, French, Italian, German, Spanish)
- Accessories included: M42 camera adapter, C-thread camera adapter, and fan battery pack
- Optical Design: Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Astrograph
- Aperture: 203mm (8")
- Focal Length: 400mm (15.74")
- Focal Ratio: f/2.0
- Central obstruction diameter: 93mm (3.66") (46% of aperture diameter)
- Image Circle Diameter: 22mm (.86"), 3.15°
- Useable field Diameter: 32mm (1.26"), 4.6°, minimal performance loss at edge of FOV
- Wavelength range: 390 - 800 nm
- Spot size: < 4.6 μm RMS across image circle
- Optical Coatings: StarBright XLT
- Off-axis Illumination: 93% at 11mm (.43") off-axis
- Optical Window Diameter: 46mm (1.81")
- Back focus with included camera adapter: 25mm (.98")
- Back focus from top of threaded collar: 29mm (1.14")
- Optical Tube: Aluminum
- Optical Tube Length: 628mm (24.7")
- Optical Tube Diameter: 235mm (9.3")
- Focuser: Ultra-Stable Focusing System
- Finderscope: Not included
- Optical Tube Weight: 7.7 kg (17 lbs)
- Other Features: Air-cooling system, integrated filter mount
- Included items: M42 camera adapter, C-thread camera adapter, fan battery pack
- Dovetail: CGE Dovetail Bar
- Celestron 2 year warranty
- Mount Type: Computerized Equatorial
- Instrument load capacity: 30 lbs (13.6 kg)
- Height adjustment range (includes mount and tripod): 1118mm to 1626mm (44" to 64")
- Tripod Leg Diameter: 50.8mm (2") Stainless Steel
- Latitude adjustment range: 7° to 77°
- Mount Head Weight: 17 lbs (7.71 kg)
- Accessory Tray: Yes
- Tripod Weight: 8.16 kg (18 lbs)
- Weight of Counterweights: 1 x 12 lbs
- Slew Speeds: 9 slew speeds - max speed 4°/second
- Tracking Rates: Sidereal, Solar and Lunar
- Tracking Modes: EQ North & EQ South
- GPS: N/A
- Dovetail Compatibility: Dual saddle plates (CG-5 and CGE saddle)
- Number of Auxiliary ports: 3 Aux ports (1 hand control and 2 AUX ports for optional accessories)
- Autoguide port: Yes
- USB Port: Yes, input on Hand Control
- Power Requirements: 12V DC 3.5A (tip positive)
- Motor Drive: DC servo motors
- Alignment Procedures: 2-Star Align, 1-Star Align, Solar System Align, Last Alignment, Quick Align
- Periodic Error Correction: Yes
- Computerized Hand Control: NexStar+ hand control with LCD display, 19 fiber-optic backlit LED buttons
- NexStar+ Database: 40,000+ objects, 100 user defined programmable objects. Enhanced information on over 200 objects
- Software: Celestron's Starry Night Special Edition Software, SkyPortal App
- Included Items: Advanced VX Equatorial Head, Tripod, Accessory Tray,1 x 12 lbs counterweight, NexStar+ Hand Control, DC Power Cable (plugs into cigarette lighter socket)
- NexStar+ computer controller
- Flash-upgradeable firmware
- 40,000 objects in the database including complete Messier, NGC, and IC catalogues
- 100 user-definable objects
- Expanded information on over 200 objects
- User-selectable language: English, French, Italian, German, Spanish
- Alignment procedures: 2-Star Align, Quick Align, 1-Star Align, Last Alignment, Solar System Align
- Slewing speed up to 4°/sec
- Permanently programmable Periodic Error Correction
- GPS upgradable via Celestron SkySync GPS
- SkyQ upgradable for wireless smartphone/computer control
- Communication ports: 2x AUX ports, Autoguider port, RS-232 port (on hand control)
- Includes RS-232 cable
- Includes 12v car plug-in adapter
- Requires 12v DC 3.5A (Tip positive)
- TheSky® First Light edition planetarium software with 10,000 object database, printable sky maps and enhanced images
Weights and Dimensions
- Mount Payload Capacity: 14kg (30lbs) (not including counterweights)
- Optical Tube Assembly Weight: 7.7 kg (17 lbs)
- Optical Tube Assembly Length: 43.2cm (17")
- Mount Height: 40.6cm (16")
- Tripod Height: 74-127cm (29-50")
- Tripod Legs Outside Diameter: 50mm (2") and 38mm (1.5")
- Tripod Weight: 8kg (18lbs)
- Mount Weight: 7.7kg (17lbs)
- Counterweight: 5kg (12lbs) x 1
- Total Kit Weight: 27.6kg (61lbs)