iOptron SkyTracker Pro
iOptron SkyTracker ProIntroducing the iOptron SkyTracker Pro! It has been four years since iOptron first introduced the original SkyTracker, and in that time it has become a staple tool for astroscape imaging. Since then there has been a real explosion of interest in this field of astro photography, an explosion of interest that resulted in the ingenuity of countless dedicated observers and imagers pushing the existing equipment to its limits. And now, iOptron has chosen to expand those limits with their next generation camera tracker, the iOptron SkyTracker Pro.
iOptron has made the SkyTracker Pro exceedingly compact, as it is now small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and easily be transported anywhere. Packed into this tiny size is the same precision and mechanical quality as before, just as you've come to expect from any iOptron product. It boasts a unique bidirectional rapid slew function which enables the user to reframe without disturbing the camera. The included polar scope etched reticle now has an adjustable brightness control to help deliver optimal visibility regardless of light conditions. Another great addition to the SkyTracker Pro is a rechargeable power source capable of over 24 hours of continuous operation on any of the SkyTracker Pro's four tracking speeds.
Furthermore, various changes and upgrades beyond those above are present in the removable Alt-Azimuth base. This base now features a precision bubble level, degree markings for the altitude and a built in post for the azimuth control. Because the base is removable, you can also mount the SkyTracker Pro ball-head (without the base) directly to any standard photographic tripod with 1/4-Inch or 3/8-Inch threads. The SkyTracker Pro is a massive aide to anyone interested in astroscape or wide-field astrophotography, and is well worth the investment to get started.
Features and Specifications
- All metal structure with ABS covers
- Attaches to a camera tripod with 3/8-Inch or 1/4-Inch threads
- Accepts cameras weighing up to 3 kg (6.6 lb)
- Silent tracking for smooth camera motion, perfect for long-term exposures
- Detachable alt-az base with fine latitude and azimuth adjusters for easy polar alignment
- Reversible mounting post for both 3/8-Inch and 1/4-Inch threaded ball-head mounting
- Includes iOptron AccuAlign dark-field illuminated polar scope
- Adjustable polar scope illumination with eight brightness levels
- 4 tracking speed (1X, 1/2X, solar and lunar). 1X celestial tracking for imaging the sky and stars; 1/2X tracking speed for imaging both the starry night and terrestrial landscapes at the same time
- Quick slew (180X max.) for camera framing adjustment
- Operation in both Northern and Southern Hemispheres
- Built-in rechargeable battery with Micro USB port for power and charging
- Over 24 hours of operation (20 deg.C)
- 1/4-Inch or 3/8-Inch thread converter included
- Padded carrying bag included
OPT Product Number: IO-3322
QUESTIONS & ANSWERSAsk a Question
Is the polar scope illuminated reticle make finding the south celestial pole easy, or is the polar finder designed specifically for the northern hemisphere? Does it come with a case, or do I need to use one of mine? Unlike my Vixen, it only needs one ball
The polar finder is set up to work in both Northern and Southern Hemispheres, but the reticle takes the form of a clock with rings denoting 60', 65', and 70' from the pole. You would need a star chart or an app to figure out what distance and clock angle
No matter how accurate the tracking rate and polar alignment there is often some 'drift' in the other axis. I see no fine control to make periodic manual corrections in declension. Am I missing it?
Drift in Declination is nearly always related to polar misalignment, as a perfect polar alignment would generally only show periodic errors in RA due to errors in the worm gear among other things. Other causes of Dec drift may relate to flexure or slippa