Celestron NexYZ Smartphone Adapter Review/Demo: (Includes the fix to a common problem)
I suspect thats because they seem to come with every telescope nowadays, and everybody has one and ive used one for years and, to be honest, they work really well. In fact, ive taken pictures like this, and this and this, however, you cant stop progress and theres a new adapter in town, its called the celestron xyz, and in this video im going to show you how it works, how to set it up how to set up The software on your camera app and how to fix a common issue with this adapter and, most importantly, who should and should not buy the celestron xyz Music. You can buy the celestron xyz adapter online. For about 65. I bought mine with the meager earnings that i get from selling my science fiction, adventure series called red hope. I also have a new book. Its a prequel called first hope, the audiobook for that the full length audiobook is now streaming on youtube for free uh. It would mean the world to me if you could give it a try and maybe even pick up a copy of the e book for only 99 cents. Now lets get back to the real target of this video. So what do you get for 65 dollars? Lets? Take a look theres, a full lid and theres a bag and in the bag you get the next yz adapter. Okay, in all of its glory right, you get a set of paper. Instructions ill be demonstrating this in the video.
So if you want, you can still read these right in several different languages and you also get a couple of adapters here. I guess this is. If you have some of the older pieces, i have an example here. These are really popular. I guess a while ago, in the 80s and 90s on the essentially the lower cost telescopes that you could buy at department stores, so this would be an adapter somewhat for these, it would need to be a bit longer, no youre not seeing double uh its a Long story to explain why i have two of these, but keep watching for your chance to get the celestron xyz adapter spoiler alert push the like and subscribe buttons. If youve watched my other adapter video, you know that i always start out the process with mounting the eyepiece first in the adapter, its relatively simple, but there is a trick. For example, when you first get this, you might notice wow that spring tension is, is not very tight. In fact, you might just think it just clamps down on like that, but but that is way too loose. In fact, if you were to set this on here like that, it would probably fall off and it would destroy your expensive phone, so no, we dont do it that way. The key to the celestron xyz is that it doesnt rely on spring tension alone. Instead, theres, actually a reddish nut right here that we use to tighten it down every time, its very important that you tighten this down every time so heres how it works.
You take the eyepiece, you put it in here you let it clamp down where you think it should go, and then you tighten this nut sufficiently tight so that the eyepiece is in there pretty rigidly thats, actually not going to go anywhere. Now you may have already noticed actually, when i was setting this up, that the spring has quite a bit of range. Look at that, and this is actually really nice, especially if you have large eye pieces here. Example is the two inch and it fits on there. Pretty nice, you still need to tighten that nut. Okay, if you are fans of the explore scientific 82 degree eyepieces, these things are pretty awesome. Then you may have noticed that these dont fit in the old traditional affordable, i guess or cheap cell phone adapter. Now. This is kind of a one of the cons for using this. It doesnt fit the explore scientific barrels, so it doesnt fit right and it especially doesnt fit the 30 millimeter eyepiece. At least you know not without some dynamite, but then again neither does the celestron xyz. Now, oddly enough, the celestron xyz can fit a lot of the larger eyepieces, but the one thing it cant really handle is, if you have really short, stubby eyepieces uh youre, going to run out of gripping room on the the barrels here. If you try to put this in there and but you know, thats one of the pros of the old cheap version is that this actually works pretty well.
But anyways were talking about the new adapter here. Okay, so youve got the eyepiece clamped in now. For the easy part, there are three grabbers on this: that will pinch your cell phone. Two of these are fixed theyre, not going to move this. Third, one is spring loaded, so just take your cell phone pull the spring loaded part out and put the phone in and just make sure it is put in the right spot like that, its just that easy. So there you go just load your cell phone in its pretty grippy. Just you know, be reasonable about it. Now getting the camera lens lined up with the eyepiece thats, the tricky part usually, but its pretty easy. With this adapter, the celestron xyz has all the adjustments you need to make it very simple. Let me show you, there are three adjustment, knobs lets, call them the x and y and then theres the z. This z axis is the one that i had problems with, but celestron tech support was pretty awesome and im going to demonstrate how i tighten that up later on in this video. The first thing i need to do is adjust the z axis so that the rubber cup of the eyepiece is touching the cell phone thats a good place to start. So you just turn the knob until that gap closes see, thats going farther away, bring it up. Like that now, the reason we want to do that is because its going to basically close this gap and make sure that no, for example, outside lights, any street lights can get in here and mess up the image.
It also puts the camera lens right about where your eyeball would be, so it helps with focus a little bit, but how do you get the camera lined up perfectly at least this way, and this way the first step is to turn on the camera app all Right, so this is what you might see when you first start it up and again there are two knobs stacked on the bottom, and these are going to control the side to side and forward and backward motion of the camera relative to the eyepiece. So lets get the forward lined up first and thats. This big knob there thats a thats a good first guess now were going to do side to side, which is the middle knob, and look at that now. Ive hit the extreme edge movement on this adjustment. Ill talk about how that could possibly be a limitation for some people, most likely it wont be so all in all that was actually really easy. Thats much simpler than lining up one of these old adapters while were here. I do need to touch on something that might be a problem for some of you that side to side movement is limited so for people that have cell phones that are in the upper corner right here. That wont be a problem. So, for example, all the apple iphones out there you have all the adjustment in the world youre going to be able to use the heck out of this adapter.
However, if your camera is right in the middle of this as it is on this particular phone, then i was pretty much at the side to side limit adjustment that i could get out of this adapter. In fact, and actually i might not have had enough – i might have been just actually a little bit off if my phone were any wider and the camera was in the middle. I might act not actually be able to get it lined up with the eyepiece. I did some calculations and if your camera is in the middle of your phone and your phone is wider than about 3.3 to 3.4 inches, you may actually run into this side to side. Travel limitation, of course, all is not lost. If your phone is still in the case, then you just remove the case and thatll actually buy us some space back on this adapter. But again you know. I think this is probably a pretty rare situation, but i did want to point it out. Just in case, you have a very large phone with the camera right in the middle to take the best pictures youre going to need to do some basic setup on your camera, app, okay, so im going to show you the basic setup for the phones, alright. So this is the samsung galaxy s9 plus im going to show you how i set it up for astrophotography of all the options. I click on the more button and i go to the pro option.
This brings up some of the more important things. The cameras are amazing. These days they can pretty much guess what you want to focus on theres. Only one problem. If you point one of these up into the sky, it doesnt know how to focus. In fact, it starts hunting for focus going in and out blurry uh far near. So what were going to do is since were trying to take pictures of things that are millions of miles away. We are going to make sure we use manual focus and were going to make sure its focused on infinity thats, sometimes represented by you, know mountains or a tree, or something like that. You dont want it to focus on the flower. That means youre manually, focusing on something really close. We want to focus on far away so set the manual focus to infinity. If you have it now. The other two important settings that you have are the iso setting thats the light sensitivity and the shutter speed, which is in basically fractions of a second now on this phone. The iso goes from 800, which makes it super sensitive to light and 50, which makes it super dark. If youre taking a picture of a very bright object like the moon, you can get away with setting iso pretty low. If youre trying to take a picture of say jupiter, you might want to put it in the middle range between you know: 250. 350.
Something like that now. The other control that you have is the shutter speed. Now this goes from 1 6. 000 of a second all the way up to 10 seconds, and you can see that in a way this uh, it basically controls how long the image is exposed to whatever youre taking, and it just keeps gathering light. So, for example, when i take pictures of the international space station that things moving pretty quick, so i have to set the shutter speed to at least one 350th of a second and of course i turn the iso up a little bit just to capture the space Station, as it turns out, is pretty bright, so thats, usually not a problem. So again, the three things that you have to control somehow uh on your particular camera app are, if you have manual, focus, set it to infinity play with the iso light, sensitivity, settings and then shutter speed. You have to make that judgment on what youre trying to photograph so thats, really all there is to it all right now lets get this into focus there we go nice, full moon. I actually have a 15 millimeter eyepiece and on this particular telescope, that will show you just barely the the whole full moon uh. One thing to keep in mind is: i have a sliding counterweight back here when you put the heavy camera and the adapter on the front. This thing may want to tip down so youre going to have to have a counterweight or some way to basically counteract all that heavy weight up front, but lets get this centered lets see if we can take some pictures make sure its in focus its pretty sharp And take a picture and take a picture all right, um now, if i want, i can zoom in zoom in on the crater up there remember this is everythings upside down, because the way this telescope shows things take a picture of the crater awesome you can play With the iso light sensitivity settings you can play with the shutter speeds, you get darker and lighter im gon na set it at 3000 for now.
Okay, so we need to have a talk. I did have one issue with this adapter now your experience may be different, but when i got it the adjustment axes were actually really loose, but especially the z axis. It was downright sloppy. In fact, the z axis was actually kind of bent, so i contacted celestrons tech support and they pointed me to some online instructions for tightening things up. Uh heres the printed out instructions ill have a link to the online version of this down. In the description as it turns out, each of the three axes actually has two screws that can be turned very carefully to tighten up the axes. The key word is carefully: do not over tighten them and make sure to use the right size screwdriver and go slowly only turn them a little bit at a time and check for tightness on each of the axes. Ill point them out here here are the two screws for the z axis. Here are the two screws for the side to side, and i believe here are the two screws for the forward and backwards? Okay. So what is it actually doing when you tighten these when you tighten those little screws, it pushes against this little wedge here? That gets squeezed against the dovetail and it actually makes each of the axes a little bit harder to move. So you got to be careful, though, because this is threaded plastic or nylon or whatever.
That material is so make sure you dont over, tighten it. You can strip this so be very careful. I had to take this one step further because – and i wouldnt go so far as to say this is a design flaw at all, but my z axis wouldnt tighten up or get straightened up, no matter what i did. It just stayed loose quite quite a bit loose and after doing some troubleshooting, it came down to one of these adjustment screws actually being too short and its kind of a weird, a weird thing that happened. So this particular screw, the head of it, was bottoming out on the body of this plastic before it could reach its full extension on the wedge, that it was pushing down now this front screw thats, fine and that wasnt a problem. So i found kind of a simple trick around that i actually took this one out and i replaced it with a longer screw again be very careful. You do not want to over tighten these by the way. This is a m2. These are metric machine screws. This one is 10 millimeters long and, of course, when you get to the point where you can feel just a little bit of the tension, you want to start testing it and see if its still wobbling. So let me tighten this one just a little bit and remember just tighten them a little bit very, very careful one note of warning doing this might actually void the warranty, its the exact same threads, its just a slightly longer screw.
But just you know proceed at your own risk because this plastic can be stripped. The threads can be stripped, so just be very careful dont over tighten it, but, as you can see, this is really tightened up now. Okay, so lets recap with some of the pros and cons of the new celestron xyz. This is not a cheap accessory, so who should buy it? Well, if you have eyepieces that are kind of the standard size down in the 30 millimeter diameter range to maybe 40 millimeter diameter range, you can probably get away with one of the more affordable, cheap adapters and, of course, one of the other side. Benefits of these is that they fit the short stubby eyepieces. However, if you want a super fast way to attach and detach your cell phone and also if you have larger barrel, eyepieces, like the 82 degree, explore scientific series or even some of the standard, two inch eyepieces and, of course, dont forget the super fast alignment process. Then i highly recommend the celestron xyz. Just remember a few things: dont rely on the clamp pressure alone to hold everything together. You need to tighten that nut again if the axes are sloppy when youre adjusting them go ahead and take a look at the online recommendation. Instructions from celestron again the link is in the description down below and lastly, if you have a larger phone and the camera is right in the middle, then if you know somebody that has one, maybe you can give it a try and see if it works, but Other than that, i give it two thumbs up.
This is a pretty neat little bit of engineering here, so please push the like and subscribe button. It means the world to these videos and helps me bring more of these videos to you. Thank you for watching and, of course, go ahead, no matter what adapter you have put an eyepiece in it. Take it outside and go take some awesome pictures of the night sky, clear skies, everybody, oh yeah, so ill be giving away one of these celestron xyz adapters to one random subscriber. Once this channel reaches 2 000 subscribers uh so be sure to push the like and subscribe button uh, and please, if you want, please recommend this channel to anybody. You know that likes telescope accessories and telescope advice.