Have you ever wanted to photograph the moon, planets, stars and other things you see through the telescope on your smartphone?
Many of us must have tried it at some point. There you are, the refractor pointed at the moon, staring in astonishment like break Emphasizes the glorious structures of craters and lunar mountains.
You love being able to capture what you see, but all you have is a smartphone in your pocket.
“Sure,” she thinks, “it would be easy enough for me to hold my phone’s camera lens up to the eyepiece and take a picture.”
This technique is known as “lens drop” or “confocal imaging,” and it requires a really steady hand.
As anyone who has tried it will attest, it’s incredibly hard to get right.
This is where the smartphone telescope adapter comes in.
For more tips, read our guides to The best astrophotography tools for smartphones And the How to photograph the night sky with your smartphone.
A smart telescope adapter is a device that holds your phone in position on the eyepiece, allowing the viewfinder to get a good view of any telescope it is pointed at.
Once you have it set up, all you have to do is make sure you get a good shot of your chosen target!
What to look for in a smartphone telescope adapter
For confocal imaging with a smartphone telescope adapter to work, the phone’s camera lens must be firmly supported in the same position as your eye when you’re observing optically.
This may mean that it’s worth spending a little money on a decent adapter, as you’ll need something sturdy that holds your phone nicely in place.
Also verify that the adapter you buy already supports the make and model of your smartphone.
But you should also consider how often you are likely to get a new smartphone in the future.
If you change your phone often, you may need an adapter that fits different shapes and sizes.
Below we have selected a selection of the best smartphone telescope adapters available for purchase online.
Some telescope kits come with their own smartphone adapter, so if you’re completely new to astronomy and think you might want to capture what you see, this is a good option.
We have listed some telescopes like this below as well.
7 of the best telescope adapters for smartphones
Celestron NexYZ 3-Axis Universal Smartphone Adapter
The first thing we noticed when testing the NexYZ was the build quality.
We also liked the speed with which you can insert and remove the smartphone, which is a great feature if you’re with a group of people who all want to capture the chosen target on their own phone.
The best feature of the NexYZ is the ability to align the smartphone with the telescope’s lens in three axes, X, Y and Z, as this gives you maximum control when it comes to making sure the smartphone’s camera is aligned with the telescope’s optical axis.
We used a NexYZ with a Stargate 500 GoTo Dobsonian, an Equinox 80 ED refractor and a 100mm detection range.
We were able to capture a range of targets including the moon and deep-sky objects using NightCap appWe were very impressed.
Tele Vue FoneMate Lens Adapter for Smartphone
TeleVue FoneMate provides a great and convenient way to take pictures with a digital telescope or binoculars. This device provides an arc that grips the phone and then lines up the phone’s camera lens with the telescope’s lens.
Optical Universal Smartphone Camera Adapter
If you like to take photographs of the night sky and have access to a range of instruments such as a telescope, binoculars, digital binoculars, or other optical device, in the long run it may be worth looking for something universal that can adapt to various shapes and sizes.
More like this
The Visionary Universal Smartphone Camera Adapter is a good choice because it can fit any lens with a diameter of 26-51mm. The adapter also includes a tripod thread in the phone mount, if you have a good smartphone tripod that you use to take long exposures or star trails etc.
Altair Astro Self-Centering Smartphone Adapter
The Altair Astro Self Focusing Smartphone Adapter is fairly easy to set up and use and works well.
It places the phone at the right distance from the lens and the right side position, allowing you to adjust exposure and focus to make your photo look good.
It also keeps the phone very stable to eliminate the risk of vibrations that will affect your final image.
You can adjust four rubber-covered mounting arms to hold the phone’s camera lens over the circular hole in the adapter, then use the locking arms to secure them in place.
Three-finger grip system tightens everything onto the 1.25″ lens body.
Presser Deluxe Universal Smartphone Holder
Bresser is a popular manufacturer of telescopes and accessories, and they also produce a telephone adapter for use with both telescopes and microscopes.
It can be used on lenses with diameters from 22-38mm (which, of course, includes the ubiquitous 1.25-inch lenses).
The device works via a platform with suction cups to hold your phone in place, which makes placing the viewfinder over the lens a little more handy than other adapters, but it does come with a flexible locking ring to help hold the smartphone in place.
Another Celestron offering, NeXGO fits lenses from 25.4mm – 44.45mm in diameter and equipped with spring-loaded clips to enable quick hardware swapping.
Rotate the directional knobs to align your phone so the viewfinder is centered on the lens, and you’re ready to go.
The adapter may seem clunky fast, but it folds up for transportation. It also comes with an adjustable platform that enables it to fit a range of smartphones.
Orion Steadypix EZ
Another popular brand in the world of telescopes and telescope accessories, Orion has also entered the smartphone telescope adapter market with the Orion SteadyPix EZ.
The adapter fits smartphones from 4.7 x 2.4 inches up to 8.3 x 4.7 inches, and its clip is designed to fit lens caps from 1.2 to 2.2 inches.
Like many other models, this model works via a clip system that can be adjusted to hold your phone in place, with the lens centered over the eyepiece.
Telescopes with smartphone adapters included
If you are starting smartphone astrophotography with a telescope from scratch, why not get a scope with a smartphone adapter already included?
Broken Celestron Inspire 80AZ
Great for young astronomers
The Celestron Inspire 100AZ is a great choice for beginners, especially young astronomers who are just starting out on their journey into practical astronomy.
It is offered at an affordable price and comes with a good and sturdy tripod, 20mm and 10mm Kellner eyepieces and a 90° diagonal image (which means the telescope is suitable for ground observations).
The Inspire 100AZ also comes with red light torchaccessory tray / leg spreader and dual purpose dust cover.
Completing the package is the smartphone holder, built-in dust cover.
We were able to capture a video of the moon on our smartphone through the 20mm lens.
Acuter Voyager Mac 80
The Mack 80 is a compact, well-priced telescope measuring just 270mm in length. It offers a focal length of 800mm and a focal ratio of f/10.
This makes it what is known as a “slow” telescope and is therefore well suited for observing the planets, the moon, and double stars.
Mak 80 comes in a gift box with a soft carrying case, a finderscope And two lenses.
It also comes alone diagonal star Smartphone holder.
Read full Acuter Mak 80 . Telescope Review.