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Hubble Optics 5-Star Artificial Star for Testing and Collimating Telescopes

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The star test is the ultimate method to test and collimate your telescopes. The most and very much the only difficult part of doing the star test is that you need a star. Sadly, a real star is not always available, and you really may not want to spend your precious observation time doing a star test even when it is available.  Of course, you will also need a good tracking system for doing a star test with the moving star. After all the trouble, due to turbulence, the real star may not even reveal the true quality of your telescopes or give you perfect collimation.

An artificial star will provide you with an excellent alternative means to do the star test anytime and anywhere you want, without all the drawbacks of real stars. However, the problem with artificial star testing is that you really need different sizes of artificial stars for different telescopes of different apertures with different F/#, and even for the same telescopes but at different distances, and under different lighting conditions.

The innovative Hubble 5-star Artificial Star is a perfect solution to this problem. It has 6 bright white LEDs with 5 precision pinholes (50/100/150/200/250 microns). It will enable you to test practically all telescopes of different apertures with different F/#s, from any reasonable distances needed, and under different lighting conditions.

  • You can instantly find out which star is best for your particular telescope at that particular distance under that particular lighting environment by simply choosing the smallest possible star, but which still gives you a clear defocused image
  • You can even adjust the brightness of the stars by twisting the LED head.
  • You can mask out any 4 of the 5 stars with a provided magnetic mask.

With the Hubble Optics 5-star Artificial Star, telescopes are truly easy to test and collimate!

  • Please expose the mask only while star testing. Keep it clean to prevent the blockage of pinholes.
  • The unit should be kept in a clean Ziploc bag when not in use, separated from the magnetic mask.
  • 3 AAA batteries are required and are not included.

Is this just a flashlight with holes poked in it?

Over the years, a number of customers have commented that this is simply a cheap flashlight with holes poked in it, implying that this would be something easy to replicate at a much lower cost. While this is indeed a cheap flashlight, the value of this item is not in the flashlight but in the pinhole mask in which the precision pinholes are 0.05 - 0.25mm in diameter. You cannot simply take a pin and poke holes in a substrate to get anything remotely this small and accurate. We once had a US supplier provide us with a quote for the pinhole mask provided in this artificial star. Their quoted price was $80 for each single mask!

Please note: It is common for the pinhole mask to have one or more scuff marks on its surface, as shown in the 3rd product photo above. This is purely cosmetic.


Note: Occasionally, the product you receive might have a slightly different cosmetic appearance or labeling than what is shown. This can often change from batch to batch according to the whims of the manufacturer. However, you will always receive a brand new, original product as described above.

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Filed under: Eyepieces & Accessories