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Orion SkyQuest XT 8″ Dobsonian

There have been some major changes to the Dobsonian Orion telescope. They have redesigned the cast-aluminum cell to provide more ventilation which will reduce cool down time. They have also center marked the mirror for easy collimation.

Also improved was their focuser to the new 2″ aluminum rack-and-pinion which will fit both 2″ and 1.25″ eyepieces. Now if the improvements aren’t enough, Orion has also lowered the price from $499 to $449, making these Orion telescopes excellent value.

With the large 8″ aperture, the viewing from this Dobsonian won’t let you down. If you have been reading my other reviews on the Dobsonian you will know that I am a fan of this type of telescope.

Orion  XT8 Dobsonian

The reason being is that you will get more aperture per dollar than any other telescope, and its simplicity in design and use make it very desirable. If you want to know the difference between magnification (which you may hear some say is important) and aperture read my page on Telescopes-Myths and Misconceptions.

Planetary viewing is excellent, I was viewing Mars last night under very clear sky and could see good detail. I viewed Saturn with the Cassini division clearly visible and the shadow cast by the rings on the face of Saturn. Jupiter was also excellent. I could clearly see 4 cloud bands and Jupiter’s moons slowly orbiting the gas giant. Also if you’re viewing at the right time you will see the great red spot. You can also see some color in Jupiter’s cloud bands. Both planetary and lunar views are crisp, clear, and well defined.

Deep sky viewing is also a treat with the 8″ Dob. You can view Nebulae, Galaxies, Star Clusters and an array of celestial objects that will keep you very busy. This easy to operate Orion telescope is a great first scope.

The only problem I found with the Dob is the placement of the handle you use to carry it, which has been poorly aligned to the telescope. When you pick it up the tube will swing upwards. They have added a navigation knob at the top of the tube, which you use to position the Orion telescope, which is an excellent idea.

Product Description

  •  Orion telescope aperture – 8″
  • f/5.9
  • 6×30 Viewfinder
  • Eyepieces – 25mm, 10mm Plossl.


This Orion telescope is great for the beginner or intermediate user and for anyone on a budget who wants large aperture. The redesigning and excellent optics, in my opinion, has made this one of the best Dobsonian telescopes on the market.

You are getting value for money with this Orion telescope and with the price drop even more so. I can highly recommend the Dobsonian telescope. You will find this along with a large selection of other Orion telescopes at Catalog City

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