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A review of the Unistellar EVscope


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A review of the Unistellar EVscope

 

Well here is another product that has received a lot of hype and press, but without divulging much useful information about the telescope itself. Well needless to say, the hype worked on me….and I took delivery of my (used) Unistellar EVscope today.

 

Why did I buy, and why should you?

 

I’ve been in the hobby since I was 13 years old. Over the years I’ve had everything from homebuilt 6F8 newts, to 11” SCTs to Questars and Televues, and you know what? - M13 and all the rest look exactly the same today as they did 40 years ago - so something had to change. I thought about getting into astrophotography as a way of perhaps looking at this differently, but there is a considerable investment in equipment, a steep learning curve, and generally you need to be attendant at your telescope when imaging.

 

So the EVscope checked several boxes for me.

·         GOTO – check

·         Self-aligning – check

·         Portable – check

·         Astrophotography for idiots – check (albeit on a limited basis)

·         Ability for scope to operate remotely (ie: me indoors) - check

 

So what follows is a brief description, first impressions and first-light performance.

 

What is it?

 

A close up of a logo

Description automatically generated with medium confidenceThe EVscope is essentially a Newtonian based camera in as much as the parabolic 4.5” F4 primary mirror focuses its image directly onto a Sony IMX224 sensor located in the position that would normally be occupied by the diagonal in a Newtonian or secondary in a Cassegrain.

 

The Sony IMX224 is a color sensor with a resolution of 1.2 Million pixels (1305 x 977).

 

 

 

The OTA is carried on a single fork arm ALT-AZ Goto mount with an integral lithium ion battery supposedly good for up to 10 hours. Also packed in there is a lot of computing power as evidenced by the scope’s ability to;

 

1.      Recognize any star field you point it at and derive its internal map from that. (Plate solving)

2.      Offer full GOTO and tracking capability.

3.      View in both live view (no enhancement) or enhanced vision (EV) which takes frames every 4 seconds and stacks them internally in real time to provide an enhanced vision rendering of the target.

4.      Cancel out field rotation that you get with any non-equatorial mounted telescope.

5.      Sets up its own wireless network so it can access your phone or tablet to:

a.      Get current GPS coordinates and time

b.      Send real time pictures to your device (and 8 others)

c.       Your phone or tablet runs the Unistellar app which is a free download from Google Play or the Apple store.

 

 

The eyepiece is not really an eyepiece in the sense that we’re all familiar with, but a ‘window’ looking at a Hi-res OLED display. You see on this display (and on your phone or tablet) whatever the main Sony chip sees. The sensor image is roughly the equivalent of 50X optical magnification. There is no facility to be able to change magnifications, although can zoom digitally on your device.

 

However, it is the EV mode that makes this scope different. While it is true that astrophotography has been around for decades, and no one thing that the EVscope does is groundbreaking – the EVscope accomplishes this without all the gear, wires, setup and steep learning curve necessary to get results with a more traditional setup.

 

It is this ability to capture and stack 15 images per minute with the commensurate increase in brightness and detail of the target that allows the EVscope to make some of its extravagant claims. I have an 8” SCT (which mathematically has 3X the light gathering power) and I can tell you that, with the possible exception of M42, the lowly 4.5” mirror on the EVscope reveals a lot more detail, brightness and color of the Messier and NGC objects when in EV mode – the magic of light stacking vs. raw aperture.

 

Open box

 

The EVscope arrived packed in the usual double cardboard box. Well protected. Once you get the outer wrapper off, you will be met with the following promise.

A picture containing indoor

Description automatically generatedText, letter

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Opening the inner box reveals the following

a)                   EVscope in parked position

b)      Tripod

c)                   Accessory box for the AC adapter

d)      Quick start manual and user manual

 

 

 

 

 

First impressions.

 

The scope and tripod together weigh approx. 20lbs. I wondered what the EVscope would be made of. The answer is aluminum for the OTA tube and plastic cladding for the lower end cell and mount cladding. The fork arm/base /rear cell have aluminum skeletons but in truth is, I was a bit disappointed.

 

With this scope commanding almost $3000USD, you’d like to think you could get away from the ETX black plastic syndrome, but the scope does have some heft to it, hinting perhaps at a substantial aluminum frame beneath the cladding.

 

The tripod is basically a heavy-duty camera tripod and the feet are tipped with squishy rubber pads which seem to allow a lot of ‘wiggle’.

 

Several times I would get the message that the ‘EV mode was dropped due to vibration’. It was a breezy night. I wonder if the squishy feet were allowing too much movement?

 

The tripod design allows the angle of the legs to be altered from a narrow footprint to almost horizontal in 3 steps. There are 3 ledges that the leg stop can butt against. Just pull out the detent to allow the stop to clear the lower ledge and butt against the next. It is not spring loaded so be sure to re-seat it.

 

The interface between the mount base and tripod head could also be more rigid. There are only 2 hold-down screws around the periphery, and this allows some movement between the scope and the tripod head. 3 screws would eliminate this issue, and indeed, there is a raised boss in the casting identical to the other two locations that has not been drilled/tapped. This would be an easily fixed oversight.

 

There is also some unwanted lateral play in the AZ axis. This could be contributing to the vibration warnings I sometimes get.  I am currently working with Unistellar to address this issue and will advise the outcome.

 

A picture containing weapon

Description automatically generatedLooking down the tube you will see the primary mirror at the bottom, and the ‘secondary cage’ forming the cross at the top of the tube where the Sony sensor is mounted.

 

Interestingly, the tube is double walled.. Whether this is to help with thermal stability, or to hide the wiring going up to the sensor – who knows? The inside of the OTA is painted a satin black which does a poor job of reducing stray light. A flat black paint, or even better, a textured flat black would help the cause.

 

 

The overall length of the OTA is a bit longer than a 4.5”F4 system would normally dictate. This is because the secondary light reflections that occur in a Newtonian or Cassegrain design that eat up some focal length are missing in the EVscope. It’s straight from the mirror to the sensor with nothing in between, so the OTA is as long as the mirror focal length plus whatever is needed at either end to house the optics and sensor.

 

 

A picture containing text

Description automatically generatedUnderneath the mount arm, there are two ports. The small one (USB-C) is the charging port. The large one (USB-A) can be used for powering a phone or other USB device from the scope’s internal battery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Setting up.

 

The Unistellar documentation is not, well….stellar. It’s bare bones and basically covers taking the scope out of the box and setting it up and how to start the app. Then you’re pretty well on your own.

 

Spread the tripod and level with the integral bubble level. Plunk the mount/scope into the socket and secure with the two thumbscrews, take off the dust caps and the physical stuff is done. Maybe a minute - tops.

 

Press the power button about 2 seconds and it will initially turn Purple, and then to Red as it finishes its boot sequence and establishes its Wi-Fi network. At this point you can acquire the EVscope network on your phone or tablet, and then start the Unistellar app on that same device.

 

A picture containing text, electronics

Description automatically generatedUse the app joystick to depress the scope to point at any open area of sky with visible stars.

 

A note on the joystick. The center yellow circle is the ‘tip’ of the joystick. Drag it onto any of the four direction arrows to move the scope. The further from the center you drag it, the faster the EVscope moves. Fine adjustments can be made by tapping just the arrows. I found it a little cumbersome to use in practice.

 

 

 

 

A picture containing text, electronics

Description automatically generatedTap the Autonomous Field Detection icon to start the alignment procedure.

 

Once the scope identifies the viewed star field with its internal database (called plate solving) it knows where it is and you’re good to go.

 

It seems to be very accurate, which it needs to be to land the image dead center on a small CMOS sensor. The only caveat is that it needs to see a star field, not just a single bright star, so you have to wait a little longer for the sky to darken before you can do an alignment.

 

Tap the ‘Explore’ icon on the lower menu bar to call up the GOTO database. Here you will find most of the popular Messier, NGC and IC targets grouped into several categories. If the selected object’s ‘GOTO’ icon is greyed out, this means it is not viewable at your time/location.

 

First impressions.

 

The EVscope is not a fast slewer, and during a GOTO, it seems to pause a couple of times along the way to review its plate solving algorithms in some wayward part of the sky, but whatever it is doing, it’s doing it well as the GOTO’s were spot-on middle-of-field when done, and they stayed there for as long as you want.

 

A close-up of a cell phone

Description automatically generated with medium confidenceDuring slewing the ‘Live view’ will shows the stars as streaks until the scope settles down to tracking rates. Once on target, it stays in Live view mode unless you tap the EV mode icon. The Live view mode can be pretty grainy on dim objects. You can fiddle with manual controls for the live view mode to provide a less ‘boosted’ image. I don’t know if dimming the live view mode also dims the view for the EVscope’s Sony sensor.

 

 

 

 

 

So you’ll want to tap the EV icon and this is where the magic happens.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A celestial object in space

Description automatically generated with low confidenceThe EVscope then starts taking frames 4 sec apart, stacking and processing them to present a gradually improving image of dimmer astro targets. Brighter targets may only seconds to image, dimmer ones may run to several minutes depending on how dark your skies are.

 

In my fooling around the first time out, it only needed 20 sec to provide a nice pic of M42 and M82 – the Cigar Galaxy.

 

And I saw the Crab nebula for the first time ever….

 

And obviously, from this article, once you have the images on your phone or tablet, it’s easy to manipulate them.

 

The nice thing about all of this is that other than the preliminary setup, I was sitting comfortably in my den about 25 ft away while the scope was outside in freezing temperatures. I was able to move to the other end of the house which would have been about 40ft away at that point and still had a signal.

 

The scope seemed to be well focused and collimated when it arrived judging by the star images. Both the focus and collimation are manually adjusted with the app software providing the necessary feedback. There is an included Bahtinov focusing mask located under the front dust cap. Between the mask and the app-based cues for collimation, it is not difficult to do (easier than a standard Newtonian).

 

A couple of things seem to disorient the EVscope.

 

1.      If there are clouds or obstacles in the way of the FOV, then the scope cannot see a ‘plate’ to solve. It’s not like a regular GOTO where you tell the scope where it is on the face of the earth and what time it is and the controller then predicts the target location from there on. That GOTO system does not care about obstacles, it will cheerfully point at your target on the other side of a barn. By comparison, the EVscope navigates by comparing star fields to its internal maps. If any of the FOVs are blocked when it drops out of warp to have a recon, then the GOTO is aborted, and it returns to tracking mode.

2.      If excess vibration detected, the scope will drop out of EV mode. As mentioned, the rubber tripod feet or ‘squishy’ and there is excess play in the AZ axis that may be contributing to this issue…

 

Conclusions

 

So far, it is early days, but I am encouraged. The EVscope allows me to view the same old objects in a completely new light (no pun intended) and to save those views to my phone/tablet for use any way I want.

 

I am able to see things I could never see in my strictly visual scopes, or if visible, as my wife would say….meh...

 

So instead of doing a Messier marathon and saying ‘yeah, I think I saw it’, you can now have an image of each one for your Messier log. And like our hobby in general, the next night, the seeing or the next image could be better than the last.

 

The moon and planets can be viewed with the EVscope and indeed, they are GOTO objects in the Apps target list, but it is important to realize that this is not the EVscope’s intended purpose. The EVscope excels at aggregating light and detail from dim objects. The moon and brighter planets will require that you fiddle with the manual adjustments in live view mode. EV mode is not required. Just bear in mind that you are only dealing with 450mm of focal length so the planet views are going to be very small. However, for the moon and bright planets, any decent scope will do.

 

When it comes to looking for and viewing dim astro objects, there are basically two solutions:

 

a)      Big aperture, with all the attendant problems with portability. And at the end of the day, most faint fuzzies stay exactly like that – faint.. even in bigger scopes.

b)      Light stacking ie: Astrophotography. The EVscope is well along the way to astrophotography, albeit with limited resolution and light grasp compared to more professional setups. The meager 4.5” EVscope can show more of deep space objects than you could ever hope to see with direct vision. I’m sure there are some 24” newt owners that would dispute that statement, but please refer to my comment in point a).

 

So if you want to see more of deep sky objects than is possible with visual observing, and you’d like to be able to take pictures of these views, then this is perhaps a good fit for you.

 

I know that there are Astrophotographers out there that will sneer at this little scope, and there is no argument that for the money, you could get a much more capable telescope optically, and/or a better resolution AP setup - but you still have to carry it all out, hook it all up, learn how to use it, and accompany it with your computer while you’re taking the pics. And then you need to process the images through various software to tease out the details. I’ve done some basic webcam stuff and then processed it through a couple of stacking programs. I found it time consuming, tedious and not straightforward.

 

So the EVscope can get you into basic AP without the various components, wires, cables, computers, frostbite and steep learning curve.

 

I can take the scope outside, set it up and capture a decent image of M42 before the Pro AP guys have even finished carrying all their AP gear outside. And for now, I’m good with that.

 

EVscope Pro’s

 

·         Good introduction to basic astrophotography. It adds another dimension.

·         Accurate GOTOs and tracking

·         Fully integrated package so no wires, hookups or compatibility issues.

·         Works with any Android or Apple mobile phone or tablet with WiFi.

·         Capable of revealing very faint astro objects and saving the image files.

·         Good basic App interface. (would be better with a proper manual)

·         Very portable (OTA and tripod less than 20lbs)

·         No other accessories required.

·         Small learning curve.

 

EVscope cons

 

·         Expensive

·         Fully integrated package. If anything fails, you have a paperweight.

·         Limited capabilities compared to more sophisticated setups. Reports are that Unistellar is working on upgrades to make their scope more AP friendly for those that want to have more control. After all, it uses the same Sony IMX224 sensor as a couple of popular aftermarket AP cameras.

·         Sparse documentation for scope, and, in particular the Unistellar App. (to be fair though, they responded quickly to two questions I asked them)

·         Not really intended for the brighter solar system targets (although they can be imaged…)

·         Not good for terrestrial use.

 

 


  • kc6zut, Bob Campbell, chazcheese and 33 others like this


305 Comments

Not withstanding my own skepticism how I think I would enjoy this EAA scope (so not meant as veiled criticism) I'm genuinely curious how people feel about this scope after spending some serious time with it?

 

Especially for a novice and/or visual observer with little interest in astrophotography the pictures this little thing produces are nothing but marvels (IMO). What makes this attractive is the easy of use, but it looks to me therein also lies its downfall what longevity is concerned...? No fiddling with setups/sharp cap settings/filters/EPs etc. trying to improve the picture and/or framing, but a consistent (albeit to-me great looking) similar shot of any object (bar seeing conditions).

 

So, is there any joy in 'viewing/imaging' the same object with this for the xth time? Yes, as a visual observer I/we do the same obviously, however with what seems like a lot more variables, but somehow making the abstraction of something like this I can't but feel it would be a very different experience.

 

So, what is your experience concerning the long term enjoyment of this device/scope?

You pose some very good questions. I’m not a beginner, but a pretty experienced visual observer. Still, I can answer most of your questions as an eQ user for the past eight months. First, the objects rarely appear the same: as with any telescope, seeing, transparency, phase of the moon, etc. effect what you see. Of course, the longer you engage enhanced view, the better the image becomes. There are some adjustments you can make (gain, background) to fiddle with the image. So what you see in the eyepiece (if you have one) and on the screen does vary. The real engagement however, comes in post production. Most of us strive to produce the best results we can, from a few tweaks with the phone’s editing app, to downloading the raw data and stacking, de-noising, mosaics, etc. You can pretty much take it as far as you want.

To your point about viewing the same object for the xth time: we’ll, that’s about the same as any observing. If you stick to just the big bright objects I guess that could get kind of dull. (Maybe not.) But there’s far more of the universe available with these scopes then with most conventional ones. I’ve observed galaxies down to 17th magnitude, extremely faint PN’s and nebulae, and remarkable detail in some of the larger galaxies. Some users go after SN’s, galaxy clusters, Arp galaxies, all kinds of stuff. There’s enough to keep occupied for, well, forever. And then there’s the whole citizen science thing too.

I’ve seen more in the last eight months then I’ve seen in the previous eight years. This is something you hear pretty often from users. Partially it’s because it’s so easy, and partially because so much more is available to see.
    • Shinzawai and rickb53 like this

Not withstanding my own skepticism how I think I would enjoy this EAA scope (so not meant as veiled criticism) I'm genuinely curious how people feel about this scope after spending some serious time with it?

 

Especially for a novice and/or visual observer with little interest in astrophotography the pictures this little thing produces are nothing but marvels (IMO). What makes this attractive is the easy of use, but it looks to me therein also lies its downfall what longevity is concerned...? No fiddling with setups/sharp cap settings/filters/EPs etc. trying to improve the picture and/or framing, but a consistent (albeit to-me great looking) similar shot of any object (bar seeing conditions).

 

So, is there any joy in 'viewing/imaging' the same object with this for the xth time? Yes, as a visual observer I/we do the same obviously, however with what seems like a lot more variables, but somehow making the abstraction of something like this I can't but feel it would be a very different experience.

 

So, what is your experience concerning the long term enjoyment of this device/scope?

 
I know only 1 person with an EVScope. She’s had it close to a year now and still regularly brings it to our club’s site to gather images. She’s got quite a collection and it’s still growing. There’s a lot of stuff out there and she’s enjoying it as much now as in the beginning.

 
I would guess it’s the same for this technology as for any other visual, EAA, or AP technology. Some will remain enthralled and some may lose interest over time. Those that lose interest may move on to other aspects of astronomy or to another hobby entirely.

The robotics open more doors than they close imho, I have revisited many objects that I normally would not have. I may take a 30 minute shot one night and compare it to other examples I see on cloudynights to see what I missed, I’ll try again perhaps extending exposure time or db level, or may try it with a l’enhance filter just to see if I can improve. Doing this in robotics is a no brainer because it’s not a major commitment of time, you literally can do this while your doing something else, it’s like less than 10 minutes to just grab the scope and sit it out side and start imaging. The downsides are the same with any optical system, in my case because I use Vespera I have to accept the limitations of 50mm, your not going to impress anyone with tiny planetary nebulas or very small galaxies, however it’s still a thrill to capture them and a challenge to select the best settings to capture them as good as you can. Lastly it’s also true that you go after objects that you normally would not, you scan sky safari and look for stuff that would not normally be on anyones radar to image, there is merit and gratification in imaging the more obscure stuff even if it does not result in images that your inclined to share

Not withstanding my own skepticism how I think I would enjoy this EAA scope (so not meant as veiled criticism) I'm genuinely curious how people feel about this scope after spending some serious time with it?

 

Especially for a novice and/or visual observer with little interest in astrophotography the pictures this little thing produces are nothing but marvels (IMO). What makes this attractive is the easy of use, but it looks to me therein also lies its downfall what longevity is concerned...? No fiddling with setups/sharp cap settings/filters/EPs etc. trying to improve the picture and/or framing, but a consistent (albeit to-me great looking) similar shot of any object (bar seeing conditions).

 

So, is there any joy in 'viewing/imaging' the same object with this for the xth time? Yes, as a visual observer I/we do the same obviously, however with what seems like a lot more variables, but somehow making the abstraction of something like this I can't but feel it would be a very different experience.

 

So, what is your experience concerning the long term enjoyment of this device/scope?

 

At a club outreach event at a Bortle 4.5 park a few weeks ago the sky for some reason was unusually bright for a moonless night.  On top of that seeing and transparency were dismal.  I could see very little with my 140mm refractor and the guy next to me with a 9.25 Celestron SCT reported the same thing.  The club's 20 inch Obsession was set up and I heard over and over comments about how folks could hardly see anything.  

 

My wife had come with me and we brought our eQuinox which she set up and ran.  She became the star of the event with a crowd around her looking at the marvels the scope displayed on her phone.  It showed all the galaxies and nebulae the other telescopes failed to show and nicely with great detail and color.  One frustrated observer made a snippy comment about it not being real astronomy because she was just making pictures.  Regardless of your opinion of these scopes they do serve a purpose and on that night in particular the little eQuinox stole the show.

    • fiston, GSBass and ziggeman like this

If you already have decent scopes, are an experienced in the hobby, and have 3k to spend in the hopes of getting something that yields game changing results, get a used Gen 3+ night vision monocular, PVS-14 or MOD3. You can used them with the scopes you have, at different magnifications, and the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do. Check out the Night Vision Astronomy section under Equipment Discussions for a lot more information. It opens up the objects that you can observe like only Astrophotography can but Night Vision does it instantly.      

    • davidgmd likes this

If you already have decent scopes, are an experienced in the hobby, and have 3k to spend in the hopes of getting something that yields game changing results, get a used Gen 3+ night vision monocular, PVS-14 or MOD3. You can used them with the scopes you have, at different magnifications, and the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do. Check out the Night Vision Astronomy section under Equipment Discussions for a lot more information. It opens up the objects that you can observe like only Astrophotography can but Night Vision does it instantly.      

  

Similar take here. I see the EVscope and similar gear as competition for night vision as well. 

I have nothing against nightvision and think they are cool but it really is completely different from the robotic experience, if I had to categorize I think I would say nightvision is a subset of visual observing while robotics is a subset of eaa. And of course the main advantage of robotics is being able to conduct your imaging sessions from the comfort of your living room, perhaps a little less convenient for evoscope since you still need to walkout and adjust focus from time to time…. I feel sure evoscope will incorporate auto focus in future iterations though

If you already have decent scopes, are an experienced in the hobby, and have 3k to spend in the hopes of getting something that yields game changing results, get a used Gen 3+ night vision monocular, PVS-14 or MOD3. You can used them with the scopes you have, at different magnifications, and the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do. Check out the Night Vision Astronomy section under Equipment Discussions for a lot more information. It opens up the objects that you can observe like only Astrophotography can but Night Vision does it instantly.      

If you already have decent scopes, are an experienced in the hobby, and have 3k to spend in the hopes of getting something that yields game changing results, get a used Gen 3+ night vision monocular, PVS-14 or MOD3. You can used them with the scopes you have, at different magnifications, and the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do. Check out the Night Vision Astronomy section under Equipment Discussions for a lot more information. It opens up the objects that you can observe like only Astrophotography can but Night Vision does it instantly.

the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do.

Let me first say I do not have a dog in this hunt, neither an EVscope (or other iteration) nor night vision.  But, this statement is a little misleading.  Yes, NV might enhance the view better than a 5-10 sec exposure (I cannot verify, but I will trust).  But, the EVscope stacks many 5-10 sec exposures to make an image that far exceeds what NV can do (because it cannot stack).  This is the main gain from EAA.  I have seen detail in tiny, Mv 15 galaxies under my Bortle 8 backyard skies using a 4.5" refractor by using EAA.  Be assured, however, if I had the 3-4K for NV I would get it instantly to use in my 20" Dob under dark skies, so I am not advocating for EAA over NV.

I didn't mean to imply that one is better than the other (robotic vs night vision enhancement), as I have no personal experience other than seeing someone else's EVscope in action. It certainly seems logical that 10-15 minutes of integration could produce more detail that a night vision scope.

 

What surprised me about the EVscope is that it felt more like direct observation than I thought it would. We were outside under the night sky, and even though we were looking at a screen as the image built rather than through an eyepiece, it didn't feel like looking at a computer screen in my living room. Granted, the "feel" is highly personal and individual.

    • eyeoftexas and GSBass like this

Yeah… that was the main gist of what I was saying, the two are not direct competitors, completely different, and also yes, robotic imaging is unique but does feel like eaa observing, just without the real time adjustments, I still do adjust frequently for composure/exposure but it requires restarting the capture

If you already have decent scopes, are an experienced in the hobby, and have 3k to spend in the hopes of getting something that yields game changing results, get a used Gen 3+ night vision monocular, PVS-14 or MOD3. You can used them with the scopes you have, at different magnifications, and the yield is far better than what 5-10 sec exposures can do. Check out the Night Vision Astronomy section under Equipment Discussions for a lot more information. It opens up the objects that you can observe like only Astrophotography can but Night Vision does it instantly.      

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i’m sure night vision eyepieces have their place but if you want to see and capture images like this in 20 minutes including setup time, you’ll have to get an EV scope

    • Dave Mitsky, alder1, nof and 1 other like this

I’m looking forward to Eagle clearing my trees, looks like mid June before it emerges before midnight

 

 

i’m sure night vision eyepieces have their place but if you want to see and capture images like this in 20 minutes including setup time, you’ll have to get an EV scope

 

I already have plenty of astro gear much superior to this in a ROR observatory but I'd enjoy the presents of one of these scopes doing group science while I was doing my usual activities as long as it had two things that I don't see looking at its website. First, I don't care to use a phone to control it but would only want to use an application from the Windows computer that I currently use for everything else. And  second, to feel the participation I'd want that same windows application to show me exactly what it's doing, how many EvScopes are doing it, and the progress that had been made by mine and those other scopes for the task or tasks of that night. That would give the feeling of participation that would be worth the thousands spent on a device like this.

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Johnnycarter22
May 28 2022 06:49 PM

Looks like an amazing product, thanx for the review.  

Just wanted to add a note on repetition of objects, it does get to a point where you have imaged just about everything, I was in that situation tonight , however it is forecast to be excellent seeing and transparency so I thought I would have another go at the pinwheel just to see if I can improve, also stuff does go away, lots of stuff that I imaged last winter I would like to try again. Also I’ve enjoyed imaging the supernova this spring and doing magnitude estimates, pretty easy to fit it in to any imaging session

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Old Speckled Hen
Jun 11 2022 04:33 AM

https://www.celestro...versary-edition

 

Add a hyperstar and you have about the same price with a better scope and more resolution.  Add 500 bucks for a better chip and sharpcap on a laptop and you have a FAR more capable system that should be pretty close to a similar level of setup and learning curve.

 

Fine for those looking for a light wt solution, but better solutions ARE there already. 

 

My 2 cents.

 

JMD

Are you a hyperstar user btw?

Seems a bit too close to going on your laptop, pulling up a nice image of some Messier object, taking a screenshot and proclaiming, "look at the picture I took!"

Hey jupiter122, it’s obvious you don’t know what you’re talking about! Take a look on the ev scope global FB page…

I imagine some people will always feel like your not really driving if your not switching gears manually and many years later some people still buy stick shifts , but I can assure you all the fun of Astrophotography remain in tact with robotics, i credit the companies for making it work well but I still drive it

Seems a bit too close to going on your laptop, pulling up a nice image of some Messier object, taking a screenshot and proclaiming, "look at the picture I took!"

Seems a bit too close to going on your laptop, pulling up a nice image of some Messier object, taking a screenshot and proclaiming, "look at the picture I took!"

But owners of these EAA scopes know better than that. They know that such scopes really do produce fantastic results (I've had a Stellina since Feb '20).

    • GSBass likes this

You know… I found it kinda toy-ish at first at first glance.

 

But having just bought a bunch of equipment for some EAA, AND dabble in AP, thinking I did enough research, and spending more money than this thing costs(new, and definitely used) I’m starting to see some of the allure this thing offers. To make a long story short, I was WRONG. I may just scrape by with being able to do EAA, and “good” AP will be out of the question according to the opinion of several experienced amateur astronomers. Things like my Mount being inadequate, my “guide ratio” being not good enough, my focal length being too long… I’m like look man.. I just want to be able to use a camera on my telescope to see what visual observation can’t show me. To me, the only bummer about this product would be that it can’t be used as a conventional telescope. Being able to just “plop” it down, and start doing some EAA type observations with a simple app? Sounds pretty darned amazing right now. I’ve got to learn several software suites, go through a lengthy set-up, and polar alignment process, have spent some serious cash(to me anyways) to get accessories to make those processes easier, I do have to spend considerable effort moving my scope and all its accoutrements, including a laptop and table from point A to point B… and the learning curve is going to be steep, I know there will be lots of frustration, confusion, and difficulty ahead of me to get my desired results, and I’d be pretty darned happy to get some results similar to those produced by this EvScope.

 

Sure it may be “limited” but having the ability to take it out, plop it down, let it take care of the alignment, knowing that everything will work, without having compatibility issues, opening op your tablet or phone, and viewing DSOs sounds pretty dang enticing at the moment having just found out my (expensive) mistakes I’ve made trying to cobble together my own EAA/AP capable rig. This things all integrated..ready to run, and produce live Images of the night sky, knowing what I do now that’s pretty impressive. I’d rather be observing, than troubleshooting to be honest. If/when this thing comes out with a larger aperture selection, higher quality sensors, matured software, and possibly the ability to be used for conventional visual observing I’d absolutely consider owning one.. especially if the price is competitive, even make a base model that’s modular, let folks soup it up with a range of pre-configured and tested components based on their budgets and desires with the same “it works guaranteed” build quality - I’d be all over that!

 

I guess what I’m saying is I definitely understand why folks would want this now, heck if I didn’t already invest myself into my current rig, I’d be considering it with a very hard look. I do hope they develop this product to be more capable, more affordable, and keep simplicity at its core. 
 

Theres folks like me out there that just want to view the universe in detail, not necessarily take “award winning” pictures. But to see more than what Visual only can offer, it’s really cool that this thing does fairly well in light polluted areas. I see several appealing aspects regarding this thing, I understand why people would want to buy them.

    • Bob/BataviaIL and Neanderthal like this

Seems a bit too close to going on your laptop, pulling up a nice image of some Messier object, taking a screenshot and proclaiming, "look at the picture I took!"

  

Have you tried it? Someone brought one to our club's site and I have to say, being out under the stars and watching the image build felt a lot more like astronomy than surfing the web. I think I posted to that effect upthread somewhere.

 

This is no doubt an individual response - YMMV. It was much more engaging in real life than what I was expecting after reading about it on the web.

    • GSBass likes this

Good ap is in the eye of the beholder of course but in all fairness, it kinda needs to be judged by the aperture and focal length and camera of the instrument, which is something most people do not do. And of course post processing skill has a lot to do with final results also…. Anyway, just saying there is not much apples to apples comparisons done in our hobby and it’s more likely the winner of any contest had the most money to spend on their equipment. Moral of the story, my Vespera holds its own in the 50mm 200fl 462c class :)

You know… I found it kinda toy-ish at first at first glance.

 

But having just bought a bunch of equipment for some EAA, AND dabble in AP, thinking I did enough research, and spending more money than this thing costs(new, and definitely used) I’m starting to see some of the allure this thing offers. To make a long story short, I was WRONG. I may just scrape by with being able to do EAA, and “good” AP will be out of the question according to the opinion of several experienced amateur astronomers. Things like my Mount being inadequate, my “guide ratio” being not good enough, my focal length being too long… I’m like look man.. I just want to be able to use a camera on my telescope to see what visual observation can’t show me. To me, the only bummer about this product would be that it can’t be used as a conventional telescope. Being able to just “plop” it down, and start doing some EAA type observations with a simple app? Sounds pretty darned amazing right now. I’ve got to learn several software suites, go through a lengthy set-up, and polar alignment process, have spent some serious cash(to me anyways) to get accessories to make those processes easier, I do have to spend considerable effort moving my scope and all its accoutrements, including a laptop and table from point A to point B… and the learning curve is going to be steep, I know there will be lots of frustration, confusion, and difficulty ahead of me to get my desired results, and I’d be pretty darned happy to get some results similar to those produced by this EvScope.

 

Sure it may be “limited” but having the ability to take it out, plop it down, let it take care of the alignment, knowing that everything will work, without having compatibility issues, opening op your tablet or phone, and viewing DSOs sounds pretty dang enticing at the moment having just found out my (expensive) mistakes I’ve made trying to cobble together my own EAA/AP capable rig. This things all integrated..ready to run, and produce live Images of the night sky, knowing what I do now that’s pretty impressive. I’d rather be observing, than troubleshooting to be honest. If/when this thing comes out with a larger aperture selection, higher quality sensors, matured software, and possibly the ability to be used for conventional visual observing I’d absolutely consider owning one.. especially if the price is competitive, even make a base model that’s modular, let folks soup it up with a range of pre-configured and tested components based on their budgets and desires with the same “it works guaranteed” build quality - I’d be all over that!

 

I guess what I’m saying is I definitely understand why folks would want this now, heck if I didn’t already invest myself into my current rig, I’d be considering it with a very hard look. I do hope they develop this product to be more capable, more affordable, and keep simplicity at its core. 
 

Theres folks like me out there that just want to view the universe in detail, not necessarily take “award winning” pictures. But to see more than what Visual only can offer, it’s really cool that this thing does fairly well in light polluted areas. I see several appealing aspects regarding this thing, I understand why people would want to buy them.

    • Neanderthal likes this


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