How to connect a telescope eyepiece to a laptop

Written by greyson ferguson | 13/05/2017
How to connect a telescope eyepiece to a laptop
View images from a telescope on your laptop computer. (telescope image by Warren Millar from

If you want to take screen shots of what your telescope is viewing, or should you wish to make a presentation to a class or colleagues, it is possible to connect a telescope eyepiece to a laptop computer (if you have a supporting telescope). The only way you are able to hook up a telescope to your computer is if the planetary-viewing device has a serial port connector.

Connect the serial cable to the serial port on your telescope. Some telescopes that provide a serial connection are the LX200, Losmandy Gemini, Meade Autostar and the Starfinder.

Plug the opposite end of the serial cable onto the serial end of the serial-to-USB adaptor. Most computers do not have serial connection ports any more, so you need to use this adaptor to convert the signal to USB.

Plug the USB cable into one of the USB ports on your computer.

Insert the driver installation CD for the telescope. Momentarily the driver installation wizard appears on the screen. Click "Next," then accept the license agreement. Leave both the installation name and location of the file as is, then choose "Install" and the drivers will install on your computer.

Remove the driver installation CD and insert the software installation CD. This is the program that allows you to see the same content on your computer as the eyepiece in your telescope. Accept the license agreement when the installation wizard appears, then follow the remainder of the prompts to complete the installation.

Things you need

  • Telescope with serial port
  • USB-to-serial adaptor
  • Computer
  • Driver installation CD

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