All About Telescope Smartphone Adapters

A smartphone adapter is an astronomy accessory that allows you to take photos of what you see in your telescope, on your smartphone. This tool isn't limited to just telescopes, you can also attach this tool to your spotting scope, or binoculars. This tool allows you to take photos of the night sky using your cellphone. Pretty cool, right? It’s quite simple, read on to learn more!

Celestron NexYZ 3-Axis Universal Smartphone Adapter

How do I use this tool?

Like many astronomy tools, each adapter is slightly different but they all share the same basic similarities. To use this tool, start by setting up your telescope as you normally would, then:

  • Align and focus your scope to your desired spot in the sky.
  • Attach the smartphone adapter to the eyepiece and connect your smartphone to the adapter.
  • Position smartphone and adapter at the correct angle over the eyepiece and adjust as needed for your phone camera to get into focus.
  • Tighten and secure your smartphone on the adapter so it stays in the right spot.
  • Snap a picture or press record and enjoy!

Check out this video by Michael Martin of Late Night Astronomy for a quick tutorial:

What can I do with a smartphone adapter?

The limits of what you can view and capture with your smartphone using this tool is directly linked to both the abilities of your telescope, as well as the quality of the camera on your smartphone. A high quality viewing experience and usually correlate to a higher quality photo and video and vice versa.

You can set your phone up to record and see in real time the movement of the sky. Depending on your smartphone camera’s abilities, you can even make a time-lapse of what you see! If you would like to delve deeper into the hobby, we recommend you try taking photos with an app made for smartphone astrophotography.

Read more on smartphone astrophotography related apps.

I purchased a smartphone scope, do I still need to buy a smartphone adapter?

We carry a number of smartphone compatible telescopes that do not include a smartphone adapter. Not sure if your scope comes with one? Be sure to check out the Included Items list under Product Detailson the webpage of your specific item.

Here is a list of our smartphone compatible telescopes

If you have a smartphone imaging scope, like the Universal Astro 70mm Refractor scopes or one of the Meade StarPro scopes, you do not need to purchase a smartphone adapter because there is already one included with your purchase!

There are other telescopes that have smartphone compatibility, but do not include an adapter. If you aren’t sure if this adapter is included, contact us.

Will my scope work with a smartphone adapter?

Make sure your telescope has a 1.25” or 2” eyepiece size, and make sure your smartphone adapter is the correct size. Some smartphone adapters work with both 1.25” and 2” eyepiece diameters, but some are one or the other. Make sure to double check that the one you are ordering is the right size.

Not all telescopes will work with a smartphone adapter. Some telescopes are made specifically for astrophotography and will only work with a dedicated astrophotography camera. If that is a route you are interested in heading towards, you can learn more here.

OPT recommendations:

If you have any questions, or need assistance with anything in particular, feel free to contact our expert support team.

1 Response

Rosalee O'Neill

February 04, 2022

Hello, I am interested in buying a computerized telescope that also has a smart phone adapter. My price range is $300-$1200.
Thank you for your advice.

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