Comparison of Smartphone Adapters for Telescopes

I spent some time with both the Carson Hookupz 2.0 and Orion SteadyPix Quick Smartphone adapters on my Meade ETX90EC.  I wanted to test them inside before trying outside because I had issues focusing and zooming in.  The major issue I had the first time I tried was the iPhone case I use.  Once I took it off, the smartphone adapters worked much better.  I will try them outside next.

I created an article called Smartphone Adapters with more information comparing these two smartphone adapters for telescopes.


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Review of Carson HookUpz 2.0 Smartphone Optics Adapter

As I blogged before, I did some research into a smartphone adapter.  The Carson HookUpz 2.0 arrived.  I read the manual and set it up with an iPhone 5C.   I tried it first with the Meade ETX and a 1.25” eyepiece.  The initial image was just a circle but that makes sense considering the iPhone is a difference aspect ratio.  I zoomed in and image looked fine.  It was very easy to focus by just tapping the screen.  I took a picture using the headphones with the microphone to avoid motion.  I had already connected the OneDrive app so the camera roll would upload to my computer.  I looked at the images and they were fine but not as crisp when looking through the eyepiece with my eye.  Definitely needs more testing.

I next tried on the LightBridge with a 2” eyepiece.  The HoopUpz manual does say it doesn’t work with certain optical interfaces and a 2” eyepiece was definitely at the limits.  I was able to get it to work and similar results on image quality.

Overall, definitely an interesting adapter for afocal astrophotography.  I like the smartphone much better than a point-and-shot camera.  The DSLR should have more controls but need to research the options on the iPhone 5C for photography controls. 

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Smartphone adapter

Since I was a little disappointed in the point-and-shot camera afocal configuration on the LightBridge, I remembered seeing that there were smartphone adapters.  Orion Telescope had two types.  I also found a blog post with reviews.  This lead me to the HookUpz 2.0 IS-200 by Carson

My first issue with the point-and-shoot configuration was the camera only had some many controls.  Manual focus wasn’t an option.  The adapter was flexible but too flexible.  The images could only be viewed by removing the SD card.  With a smartphone, HookUpz looked very easy to connect and disconnect.  The smartphone camera would be very close to they eyepiece and the images would be synced via wireless to my computer.

So, I ordered a HookUpz to try it out.