Camera-to-Telescope Adapters

With so many types of imaging techniques, all of which have pros and cons, I have developed my own array of camera-to-telescope adapters. All these adapters are custom-machined in a shop to which I have access to.

Since each brand of a DSLR camera has a different type of lens mount (i.e., Canon lenses have different lens mounts to Nikon, and so as with Pentax, Sony, etc.), connecting it a telescope would require a special type of camera-to-telescope adapter called a T-ring and a T-adapter. A T-ring is simply a metal adapter with one end that fits nicely to your lens mount and with the other end that attaches to any T-adapter. The T-adapter is the one that attaches any T-ring to a telescope
Canon S3IS point-and-shoot camera mounted with a T-adapter for afocal astrophotography
Canon Legria FS20 video camera mounted on a special type of adapter for afocal imaging
webcam-to-telescope_adapter
A special type of a T-adapter called Webcam-to-telescope adapter is used for attaching web cameras directly to focusers of telescopes for prime-focus astrophotography.
eyepiece_projection
Webcam imaging through eyepiece projection method
A universal camera adapter is a device that allows any point-and-shoot camera (and even SLRs) to be attached to any optical system (binoculars, telescope, microscope, etc.). Shown here is my second prototype (EtenyAdapter-2).

 

phone camera to telescope adapter
DIY phone camera-to-telescope adapter built from scrap wood, rubber bands, screws, and a hose clamp

Other types of adapters may also be fabricated depending on the particular need of my imaging setup.

Related links:

DIY Phone Camera-to-Telescope Adapters
Universal Camera Adapter
DSLR for Astrophotography

For tutorials on how to get started with astrophotography, click here.
For DIY astronomy projects useful for astrophotography, click here.
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© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

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22 thoughts on “Camera-to-Telescope Adapters

  1. Very useful information, Thank you!
    Any advice for attaching a DSLR to a newtonian reflector? There’s not enough back focus and I’m trying to avoid moving the primary mirror (I’m a photographer, but just got my telescope last week – Orion StarBlast 4.5)

    • Hi Dale,

      Perhaps you could try using Barlows, or replace the focuser with a better one :) Other than the two, I could not think of any way around this problem without resorting to moving the the mirror :)

      Eteny

  2. I have a Canon Rebel T3i and a Galileo FS-85MOHDX 800mm x 80mm Reflector Telescope. How do I know which adapter will fit my telescope so I can take pictures?

    Thank you.

    • I do have access to local suppliers of industrial grade metal plates and rods. A machine shop should help you locate a supplier in your area.

  3. what is the enlargement when connecting canon 550D with afocal connection to a 800mm 8″ telescope please?
    is there a formula?
    thx

    • Hi! I believe it is best if you search the net for images taken using the same camera type (Canon 550D or similar model), and with a telescope having the same focal length (800 mm). Good luck!

  4. Hi! Great info. I have been looking for a similar eyepiece projection adapter as yours in the picture above but have had no luck. I can’t seem to find a female to female adapter for this. I own a machine shop so we can make it but I was wondering if you have any dimensions or even better a source who already makes them? I am referring to the adapter that connects the webcam adapter to a typical 1.25 lens for webcam projection imaging.
    Thanks,
    Shawn

    • Hi Shawn,

      I had to fabricate the eyepiece projection adapter in a machine shop. It is simply a barrel with locking screws on both ends. One ends connects to the 1.25 inch webcam adapter, and the other end clamps to the barrel of standard eyepieces. In making this one, I made sure that one end has an internal diameter of 1.25 inch, while the other end has internal diameter that matches the external diameter (outside barrel) of your eyepiece. You will also need to perform some experimentation to determine the separation required for your desired magnification (the larger the gap between the webcam sensor and the lens of the eyepiece, the more magnified projected images).

      • Hi Eteny,
        Thanks for the info. I’m going to build one for a 8mm and a 32mm lens. Do you think an 8mm lens will be too powerful (or too small an aperature) for the webcam projection method? Also, do you think the addition of black anodize overall would compliment the effectiveness of the part?
        Thanks,
        Shawn

      • I believe an 8 mm eyepiece should be just right. At the moment, I am using a 5 mm eyepiece for the projection method and was able to get satisfying results. I also tried using a 25 mm eyepiece, but the projected image (even at maximum separation) is still too small. You may use dummy cardboard tubes and masking tape to try it out first and approximate the separation that will work with your setup. Coating the interior with black will definitely help, but not critical for short exposures required in webcam imaging (I have not anodized my adapters yet) :)

  5. Hi! I would like to ask we you happen to know a shop here in Manila where I can get a T Ring and an Adapter. I would like to brave through Hidalgo Street but I’d like to hear your take on this one first :D. Salamat.

    BTW, great site, daming info. Please keep this up. Thank again.

    • Hi James,
      I only know (as of Dec 2013) 2 shops that sell T-rings and adapters locally: (1) Tay Hua in Quiapo, and (2) Cutting Edge in SM MOA and other branches in other malls. Another option would be to visit a machine shop and simply fabricate your own (like what I do). Good luck!

  6. Hello, thanks for this great post! I have an eyepiece projection adapter which I have attached to my telescope and to my compact DSLR using a T ring. However whatever i try i cannot find jupiter in the camera’s live view screen! I have no problem finding it in a normal eyepiece so I know what im looking at, but i don’t know what to do! Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

    • Hi Medeah,
      When using eyepiece projection method with DSLR (to image Jupiter for example), I usually use the camera’s optical view finder to easily point and focus on to the target. Once the target has been centered and focus is achieved, I then switch to live view to further adjust the focus. I then mark the focuser’s barrel (with tape) so I could easily return to the proper focus and adjust the finderscope to make sure that the planet is properly centered in the cross hair (which again makes it easy to return to the target).

      Eyepiece projection is really difficult at the start. I would suggest you try it out first on the moon before imaging a planet :)

      Eteny

  7. Hi I’ve recently purchased a Canon Powershot S3 IS that I would like to connect to my 10 inch dobsonian. I’ve searched the internet for a suitable t- ring and adapter setup and purchased a t- ring that I cant connect. I’ve bought one that is meant for Canon EOS and not Powershot.
    Could you advice me on where I could get a setup that would work on my Powershot?

    Many thanks
    Atilla

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