The Half-Astrophysicist Blog

Another Galileoscope Video

I just got back in from a short session with the Galileoscope.  I put a webcam on the back and took a couple of videos of the Moon.  here is my favorite.

The Moon is near full again as it was for my previous session (purely coincidental…I want to try this near first quarter!)  which means you don’t get lots of nice shadows from mountains and craters.  I wish Youtube would do a better job of processing the video as some neat features are more prominent in the original.  I want to point out the three craters at the top of the Moon near the end of the video.  Look closely on the bottom one and you can see its central peak!

Remember to order your Galileoscope!


March 10, 2009 - Posted by | Astronomy, Astrophotography, International Year of Astronomy, Observing


  1. So the optical quality of the Galileoscope is out of the question – and actually pretty impressive for a $15 telescope. But … as every amateur astronomer knows, the optics are at best half of the story: the mounting and ease of use are at least as important for both productive observing and plain fun!

    Now the Galileoscope comes without a mount of of its own and has to be screwed onto some tripod – and has a magnification of at least x25. At the Communicating Astronomy to the Public conference in Athens we (which includes Rick Feinberg, by the way) could play around with the Japanese ‘competitor’ already on the market back then in 2007: Despite a magnification of only x15 we found it hard to even find things with it – and that was in the well-lit poster hall!

    So, as your next video, please give us some “reality TV”: show us in a real-world experiment how lay people find – and track – the Moon and planets with the Galileoscope on an affordable photo or video tripod and then get useful results and/or a “Galileo moment” out of the experience! This is the one – crucial! – test I haven’t seen anywhere among all those hail-to-the-Galileoscope stories so far …

    Comment by Daniel Fischer | March 11, 2009 | Reply

  2. Yes, the mount is always an issue. Fortunately, the Galileoscope is light and can be mounted on any standard camera tripod.

    I believe the Japanese competitor you are referring to is known as the Starbook Telescope. I have used that telescope as well. Although the magnification of the Galileoscope is higher at 25x, the optical design gives the Galileoscope a 1.5 degree field of view which is larger than the Starbook telescope. The larger field of view helps a lot.

    Comment by halfastro | March 11, 2009 | Reply

  3. Hello halfastro,
    YouTube’s processing is certainly lossy, but not too much.
    I’m not sure, but the webcam you used appears to contain a CMOS sensor,
    and/or it was out of focus.
    Since to date the Galileoscope is not shipping to Japan, I have made a similar
    experiment with a Japanese 40mm telescope kit (Spica) and a CCD webcam.

    No disrespect intended.

    Comment by Robert | June 14, 2009 | Reply

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