Unistellar reveals second-gen eVscope eQuinox smart telescope at CES 2023

Unistellar eVscope eQuinox 2
(Image credit: Unistellar)

French smart telescope-maker Unistellar has used CES 2023 to announce and show off its eVscope eQuinox 2 smart telescope – the follow-up to 2021’s impressive eVscope eQuinox. Selling for US$2,499/£2,199, it’s the company’s most affordable model yet in a line-up that also includes the Unistellar eVscope 2

Read: Best smart telescope

What sets apart eQuinox 2 from eVscope 2 – and, indeed, from almost every other telescope on sale – is its lack of an eyepiece. A 4.5-inch/114mm reflector telescope with a focal length of 450mm, focal ratio of f/4 and 50x magnification, like its stable-mates the eQuinox 2 is more an autonomous astrophotography rig than a backyard telescope. 

It’s inspired by how professional telescopes on mountaintops work; inside is a Sony CMOS image sensor that uses Unistellar’s ‘Enhanced Vision’ technology’ intelligent image processing, live-stacking long-exposures of deep-sky objects it’s tracking and displaying them on the company’s smartphone/tablet app. Unistellar also tells us that its partnership with NASA will soon permit any eQuinox 2 to be used to search for distant exoplanets around other stars. 

On this new version, the image sensor is upgraded from a Sony IMX224 to a Sony IMX347, which increases the resolution of its images from 4.8 megapixels to 6.2 megapixels, an increase of 27%. The eQuinox 2 also brings a new field of view, offering 34x47 arcminutes compared to the original product’s narrower 27x37 arcminutes. Crucially, that means the Moon now fits into its field of view. Though eQuinox 2 isn’t primed for observing our natural satellite, Unistellar tells us that a future firmware update will bring it into sharp focus. The telescope weighs 9kg with its motorized Alt-Azimuth mount and 11-hour rechargeable battery; it has 64GB of built-in storage.

Unistellar eVscope eQuinox 2 (Image credit: Unistellar)

The eQuinox 2’s images will also benefit from advances in machine learning, not only in terms of contrast and color, but also the removal of the effects of light pollution – perhaps the most impressive benefit of smart telescopes. Here ‘Smart Light Pollution Reduction’ digitally removes skyglow to allow people in heavily urban settings to view deep-sky objects. 

However, perhaps the biggest change is what the eQuinox 2 is designed to observe. Once restricted to long exposure observations of galaxies, nebulae and stars, a new firmware addition to its ‘Enhanced Vision’ technology makes it possible to use eQuinox 2 to study planets – chiefly Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars. That will be done using a technique called ‘lucky imaging’ to help overcome Earth’s turbulent atmosphere, which plays havoc with planetary photography. Often used by astrophotographers, ‘lucky imaging’ refers to the practice of taking a succession of short exposures of these bright objects in the hope that there will be a gap in turbulence when the ‘seeing’ is perfect.

(Image credit: Unistellar)

“Thanks to its state-of-the-art innovations and its smart design choices, we are making space within reach from anywhere, even from light-polluted cities,” said Laurent Marfisi, co-founder and CEO of Unistellar. “Now, everyone from novice stargazers to amateur astronomers can enjoy stunning clarity, color, and hard-to-see detail like the striking colors of the Dumbbell Nebula.”

Pre-sales for the eQuinox 2 are open with the product available from mid-February 2023.

Read more: 

Best smart telescope

Unistellar eQuinox smart telescope review

Unistellar eVscope 2 smart telescope review

Vaonis Stellina smart telescope review

Vaonis Vespera smart telescope review

The best telescopes

The best camera for astrophotography

The best CCD cameras for astrophotography

The best lenses for astrophotography

The best light pollution filters

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Jamie Carter

Jamie has been writing about all aspects of technology for over 14 years, producing content for sites like TechRadar, T3, Forbes, Mashable, MSN, South China Morning Post, and BBC Wildlife, BBC Focus and BBC Sky At Night magazines. 

As the editor for www.WhenIsTheNextEclipse.com, he has a wealth of enthusiasm and expertise for all things astrophotography, from capturing the Perseid Meteor Shower, lunar eclipses and ring of fire eclipses, photographing the moon and blood moon and more.

He also brings a great deal of knowledge on action cameras, 360 cameras, AI cameras, camera backpacks, telescopes, gimbals, tripods and all manner of photography equipment.