Equipment

Geoptik SLR hotshoe Synta finderscope adapter

18 September 2015 Steve Ringwood

Reviewer Steve Ringwood acknowledges that some stunning astrophotography is possible by use of a camera and its terrestrial lens alone. But in dim nocturnal light, it can be difficult to accurately aim the camera at a particular target in the sky. The Geoptik SLR hotshoe finderscope adapter is a convenient mediator between a DSLR camera and a Synta-style red dot or optical finder’s dovetail for precise pointing.

Equipment

Celestron Ultima Duo eyepieces

5 September 2015 Steve Ringwood

While a vast body of space imagery lies just an internet click away, nothing compares to seeing an astronomical object in the eyepiece. But it is only natural that one should wish to capture such views with a camera. Steve Ringwood investigates Celestron’s ingenious Ultima Duo hybrid eyepieces intended to combine your visual and photographic needs in one package.

Equipment

Explore Scientific Ultra Light Dobsonian

15 August 2015 Steve Ringwood

In developing the beautifully minimalist Dobsonian, the resourceful John Dobson quite rightly earned himself a kind of immortality, telescope-wise. Yet even after the decades of development and tweaking that have occurred since, the concept continues to evolve today. Steve Ringwood casts his expert eye over a new line of Dobsonians from Explore Scientific.

Equipment

Vixen SLV eyepieces

6 August 2015 Steve Ringwood

Steve Ringwood takes a good look through Vixen’s SLV range of eyepieces, offered in ten focal lengths from 2.5mm to 25mm. Each is designed to offer exceptional clarity and contrast across a 45°—50° field by employing rare earth Lanthanum glass. He also notes that each eyepiece’s polygonal rubber grip acts as an ‘anti-roll’ feature, hopefully protecting them from a fall!

Equipment

Vernonscope Deluxe 1.25-inch Binoviewer

27 July 2015 Steve Ringwood

Microscopists enjoyed the advantages of binocular vision long before someone thought to apply this principle to telescopes. Using both eyes, the brain is able to interpolate both fields, resulting in a gain in contrast and a consequently improved perception of detail. Steve Ringwood appraises a very stylish model from Venonscope aimed at the top end of the twin eyepiece market.

Equipment

Orion edge-on planetary eyepieces

23 June 2015 Steve Ringwood

Steve Ringwood takes a look through a range of 1.25-inch seven-element eyepieces of a design optimised for high contrast, flat-field performance on the planets and likes what he sees.

Book Reviews

Introducing Astronomy

28 May 2015 Steve Ringwood

The production quality of this delightful little book by Iain Nicolson is remarkably lavish given the cover price, writes reviewer Steve Ringwood. While aimed at relative newbies to astronomy, its claim to be an introductory guide does not diminish its scope.

Equipment

Celestron NexImage Burst Colour camera

25 May 2015 Steve Ringwood

Looking for a high-resolution, high-speed camera for imaging Saturn at opposition with your telescope? Steve Ringwood appraises the one-shot colour Celestron NexImage Burst, capable of capturing 120 frames/second — and it comes with image-processing software too!