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Tips for getting the smartphone camera to see whole of telescope view


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Good evening everyone! I've had a go at taken my first ever photos through the telescope this evening, but I ran into some fitting issues. I have a mount which clamps around the EP and holds the phone in place, but what I found was that the phone never really showed the full view of what you see when you look through the EP yourself and wondered if anyone had any tips!

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I'm far from expert on this but it looks to me like you just need to adjust the phone mount so that it lines up properly with the exit pupil of the EP, allowing for the eye relief as well as up/down/left/right if that makes sense. 

I've got dozens of photos just like yours...🙂

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52 minutes ago, Dark Vader said:

I'm far from expert on this but it looks to me like you just need to adjust the phone mount so that it lines up properly with the exit pupil of the EP, allowing for the eye relief as well as up/down/left/right if that makes sense. 

I've got dozens of photos just like yours...🙂

Thank you! That does make sense, I'll give that a whirl later!

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Yes, @Dark Vader is correct. I use a cheap phone mount. Getting the sweet spot does take trial and error. But once I found it I screwed/glued everything down. Possible for me as I use the same make of eyepieces. 

Many people recommend the Celestron NexYZ as this is easy to adjust in all axes. However, it’s expensive. I did splash out on this mount but for my small telescope I found it far too heavy. With this, plus a standard iPhone 12 the weight is almost half a kilo. This weight would throw everything off balance, pulling on the draw tube/optical train and making images noticeably blurry - the weight was basically putting the collimation off. But if you have a more substantial telescope it might work for you. 

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@DMH as has been said, it’s a matter of getting the phone camera aligned either the exit pupil of the eyepiece which varies depending on the eye relief of the eyepiece. If you are too close or too far away then you won’t see the full view. Get it just right and you will see the field stop sharply defined.

Two examples here of correct distance and too close.

239254F3-EEB1-46D6-9C9B-0F9C21BDEDB8.jpeg

38D96AF9-FE4F-4873-8251-6E9A85DF6DF4.jpeg

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2 hours ago, PeterStudz said:

Yes, @Dark Vader is correct. I use a cheap phone mount. Getting the sweet spot does take trial and error. But once I found it I screwed/glued everything down. Possible for me as I use the same make of eyepieces. 

Many people recommend the Celestron NexYZ as this is easy to adjust in all axes. However, it’s expensive. I did splash out on this mount but for my small telescope I found it far too heavy. With this, plus a standard iPhone 12 the weight is almost half a kilo. This weight would throw everything off balance, pulling on the draw tube/optical train and making images noticeably blurry - the weight was basically putting the collimation off. But if you have a more substantial telescope it might work for you. 

 

1 hour ago, Stu said:

@DMH as has been said, it’s a matter of getting the phone camera aligned either the exit pupil of the eyepiece which varies depending on the eye relief of the eyepiece. If you are too close or too far away then you won’t see the full view. Get it just right and you will see the field stop sharply defined.

Two examples here of correct distance and too close.

239254F3-EEB1-46D6-9C9B-0F9C21BDEDB8.jpeg

38D96AF9-FE4F-4873-8251-6E9A85DF6DF4.jpeg

Thank you both @PeterStudzand @Stu for the comment. I have a play tonight. I might take my phone case off too and see if that helps! Will keep you posted! Hopefully I'll be posting photos soon enough

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I have to take my case off, it will still fit but isn't quite so stable in the mount with it on. I still struggle to get mine adjusted right especially in the dark. 

Another tip, I normally set either a 3 or 5 second shutter timer so the phone vibration settles before the shutter triggers. Sorry if you already knew that 😀

Edited by Dark Vader
More info & fat fingers!
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2 hours ago, Dark Vader said:

I have to take my case off, it will still fit but isn't quite so stable in the mount with it on. I still struggle to get mine adjusted right especially in the dark. 

Another tip, I normally set either a 3 or 5 second shutter timer so the phone vibration settles before the shutter triggers. Sorry if you already knew that 😀

Now that is a great tip!! I hadn't thought of that, thank you!

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2 hours ago, DMH said:

Now that is a great tip!! I hadn't thought of that, thank you!

That works a treat, and really helps reduce vibration. Voice activation works well for this too, particularly on Android phones, although you can feel a bit daft shouting ‘cheese’ at your phone in the darkness!

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 16/09/2021 at 19:08, Stu said:

That works a treat, and really helps reduce vibration. Voice activation works well for this too, particularly on Android phones, although you can feel a bit daft shouting ‘cheese’ at your phone in the darkness!

Got one of these from amazon works a treat 1634082152_Screenshot_20211003-013434_AmazonShopping.thumb.jpg.d3b803c164aa9bd306d524e355999c3e.jpg

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On 03/10/2021 at 01:36, Dave scutt said:

Got one of these from amazon works a treat 1634082152_Screenshot_20211003-013434_AmazonShopping.thumb.jpg.d3b803c164aa9bd306d524e355999c3e.jpg

Ordered one of these based on this, came this morning. It works on native app with both still and video, and still only on FV-5. Thanks for the info Dave.

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On 04/10/2021 at 11:26, Dark Vader said:

Ordered one of these based on this, came this morning. It works on native app with both still and video, and still only on FV-5. Thanks for the info Dave.

I ordered one too and it works very well with my iPhone 11Pro. Native app works, and ProCam 8 does as well which is a bonus. Great little gadget.

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