Early this year Starizona released its Night Owl 0.4x SCT Reducer/Corrector offering a 4-element reducer designed to provide a wide field of view and fast focal ratio for deep-sky imaging, especially for real-time imaging, “electronically-assisted astronomy” or EAA. The Night Owl works with standard Schmidt-Cassegrain telescopes (not EdgeHD or ACF models).
The Night Owl 0.4x Reducer can increase the field of view on standard SCT telescopes by 2.5X for faster exposure times. This allows you to capture amazing detail with very short exposures. It uses a 4-element optical design to provide excellent image quality over a 16mm image circle. A sensor larger than 16mm diagonal can be used but must be cropped to a 16mm format to keep good image quality.
The backfocus distance of 38.5mm allows the use of many popular one-shot-color CMOS and CCD cameras. It can also accommodate the Starizona Filter Slider for use with many monochrome camera models and there is enough backfocus for a filter wheel with a number of camera models.
The focal reducer is housed in a 2″ diameter body and will fit into any standard 2″ visual back or focuser on the rear of an SCT. The camera side connection is a standard M42 T-thread. There are M48 threads on the telescope side for using a standard 2″ filter.
The Night Owl simply slides into the 2” visual back and is held by a thumbscrew and clamping ring. The position of the reducer lens relative to the telescope is not critical, but sliding the lens in as far as possible will give the nominal .4x reduction factor.
Since the Night Owl has standard T-threads on the camera side, so you simply need to add the correct length T-thread spacers to adapt most cameras. For example, when using a ZWO cooled camera, which has a backfocus of 17.5mm, you need a 21mm spacer, which is one of the adapters included with the ZWO camera.
The overall length of the Night Owl is 1.8-inches and the weight is 0.5 lbs. It is US retail priced at $279.00. You can learn more at the Starizona website.