The Mac Observer

Skip navigational links

You're viewing an article in TMO's historic archive vault. Here, we've preserved the comments and how the site looked along with the article. Use this link to view the article on our current site:
Astrophotography with an Apple iPhone

Astrophotography with an Apple iPhone

by , 3:05 PM EST, January 2nd, 2008

An advanced amateur astronomer, Michael Weasner, took a photograph of the full moon on Christmas Eve, 2007 with a Meade ETX telescope and an Apple iPhone.

The photo was taken near Tucson, Arizona, using a Meade ETX-70 refractor and a 9 mm eyepiece (39x). The iPhone was placed behind the eyepiece in what's called "afocal" mode. This photograph, which is not the first instance of an astronomical photo with an Apple iPhone, nevertheless shows what an experienced amateur astronomer can do with a small telescope and the camera in Apple's mobile phone.

The photograph is un-retouched except for resizing. The iPhone EXIF file did not record an exposure time, but did indicate f/2.8.


Full Moon, December 24th, 2007, with Apple iPhone and Meade ETX-70

The iPhone is not suitable for long-duration astrophotography, but for a bright object like the moon and a short exposure, decent results can be obtained. Other cell phones have also been used for such informal photography, but the delight of using an iPhone for astrophotography is hard to resist.


Meade ETX-70 refractor

Mr. Weasner is a noted amateur astronomer who founded The Mighty ETX Website and has published "Using the Meade ETX:100 Objects You Can Really See with the Mighty ETX" (Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series)

Recent Headlines - Updated May 24th

Mon,12:40 PM
Three Ways to Protect your Apple Watch (and One Way Not To)
Mon,8:40 PM
Dubious Study Says Fitbit Sucks at Heart Rate Tracking
6:16 PM
Chance the Rapper Sounds the Changing of the Guard on Apple Music and Streaming
5:27 PM
CyberGhost VPN Premium Plan 3-Year Subscription: $39.99
5:00 PM
4K UHD TV: Samsung and Sony Are Passing on Dolby Vision - Why It Matters
4:43 PM
Apple Music Paves Industry Pricing Path, Spotify Follows
3:45 PM
TMO Background Mode: Interview With AquaMinds Co-founder Scott Love
2:37 PM
Patent Lawsuit Targets iPhone for Making Phone Calls
1:51 PM
TMO Daily Observations 2016-05-23: iPhone Calling Patent Lawsuit, Fitbit Heart Rate Accuracy
9:50 AM
Apple May Turn its Stores into Car Showrooms
Sun,12:50 PM
MGG 606: The Palindrome Reviver
Fri,10:23 PM
Purism Laptops to Protect You from Surveillance Capitalism
  • __________
  • Buy Stuff, Support TMO!
  • Podcast: Mac Geek Gab
  • Podcast: Apple Weekly Report
  • TMO on Twitter!