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Moon Shots With A Smartphone

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#1 LorenBall

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 01:54 PM

The Internet is awash with images of the Moon taken by amateurs with varying experience, and just about every kind of equipment imaginable.

If you can find a way to hone your imaging and processing technique, the quality of your output can be quite surprising.

These lunar images were taken with my 3.5" Questar Maksutov Cassegrain telescope and lowly iPhone SE camera. The difference in magnification is due to different eyepieces.

The large crater in the center of the second image is Copernicus, 58 miles in diameter. The smallest craters in the image are about 1 mile in diameter.

Yes, the Questar is pricey, but I am pretty sure I could have done about as well with a 5" or 6" Schmidt Cassegrain, given the same local seeing.

Seeing is very important if you want to get the best out of your gear, and of course, perfect focus is equally important.

Do not be too quick to fault your gear. Technique covers a litany of sins.  GLTA !!!   smile.gif

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Edited by LorenBall, 24 February 2021 - 02:08 PM.

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#2 lee14

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 02:18 PM

Probably the best images I've seen from a phone camera. Equipment, both camera and optics are important, but results are only as good as one's technique. You've certainly got that nailed down! Nicely done!

 

Lee 


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#3 LorenBall

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 02:24 PM


Thanks, Lee.

Because I cursed the Moon so often over the years for getting in the way of my asteroid research, I decided to take a few images of the culprit. :)


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#4 Linked-In-The-Stars

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 02:25 PM

Excellent job, were you using any filters, iso settings on your phone and any extended exposure time? Great job, mine haven't turned out quite this nice by a long shot, but I also don't have any mount for my phone, and I'm just using the camera settings the phone comes with, and I do get some pretty decent snaps of the moon. Very nice though!!



#5 LorenBall

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 02:34 PM

Thanks, Linked-In-The-Stars

I do not use filters. The seeing was better than average.

Here is the technical data on the first image :

3.5" f/14.6 Questar Maksutov Cassegrain telescope, 24mm Brandon eyepiece, iPhone SE camera, 200 exposures, kept the best 45 of the 200, 1/200th second exposures, ISO 25. Stacked with Nebulosity 4, processed with Snapseed, Gimp, and Apple Photos.


And the second :

3.5" f/14.6 Questar Maksutov Cassegrain telescope, iPhone SE camera, 24mm Brandon eyepiece, and the internal 2X Barlow lens, 1/100th second exposures, ISO 25. I used the best 48 images from a run of 100, stacked with Nebulosity 4, processed with Apple Photos.


Edited by LorenBall, 24 February 2021 - 09:47 PM.


#6 lxr4345

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 08:37 PM

How did you mount the phone to the eyepiece (or did you)?


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#7 LorenBall

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 09:32 PM

This is the only smartphone adapter that I have ever used, lxr4345.

Any adapter is going to have to be tinkered with a bit to find the right fit. 

The important part is finding a way to get the camera lens centered exactly over the eyepiece.


https://explorescien...hTKegLICBSUR1S8


 


Edited by LorenBall, 24 February 2021 - 09:38 PM.

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#8 LorenBall

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 09:36 PM

Attention : lxr4345

 

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Edited by LorenBall, 24 February 2021 - 09:39 PM.

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#9 lxr4345

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 10:03 PM

Interesting, thank you!



#10 John Rogers

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Posted 25 February 2021 - 11:35 AM

Excellent photos Loren!  Thanks for adding the technical details.

 

Your contrast nailed the extent of the Copernicus debris field.  


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#11 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 27 February 2021 - 02:44 PM

There's a long ongoing CN thread on lunar cell phone shots at https://www.cloudyni...nar-image-here/


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