November 8th, 2022, 04:37 a.m. local time

Of the several Lunar Eclipses I have observed and photographed, this may be the briefest in terms of my time commitment.  The local time for the eclipse, about 4 a.m., plus being the middle of the week meant that I had to plan my schedule carefully.  Fortunately, I got enough sleep and set my alarm for a reasonable 3:35.  I had also placed my telescope outside about 10:30 p.m. the night prior, so that all optics were fully acclimated to the early morning temperatures (about 43 degrees Fahrenheit).  I placed towels over the tube to minimize dew buildup, and started with a very dry telescope.

This was the first time I used my new iPhone 14 Pro to photograph a "dim" object.  Previously, I only used the iPhone and telescope on the Full or near-Full Moon phases.  This morning's image required an ISO at 4000.

It was a bit nerve-wracking when I could see no hint of light through the iPhone's camera app after I had mounted it to the telescope's eyepiece.  There is always some hint of light.  Thankfully, I figured out that turning on "Night mode" exposed the viewable area fully.

Night mode uses a countdown (quickest is 5s) to take and then process an image.  Ironically there is a message on the phone to "Hold still."  If only I could tell the Moon to stay in place!  But it did not seem to matter as all the resulting captures were excellent.

This was also the first time I effectively left the phone's photography settings on Auto, including this new "Night mode" feature.  Because frankly, it took a better picture than I could manually!  The final post-processed image is attached to this article.

Equipment Used:

  • 127mm Mak-Cass telescope
  • 23mm eyepiece
  • No eyepiece filter
  • iPhone 14 Pro, using "Night mode"
  • Smartphone telescope eyepiece adapter
  • Nightcap app on iPhone
  • f/2.2
  • 1/4 sec exposure
  • ISO 4000
  • Focal length: 2mm
  • Minor touchups in PaintShop Pro and AfterShot Pro