Add Astronomy Adaptor to Philips SPC900 Webcam
Adding the Adaptor to the Quickcam Pro 4000 meant you had to unscrew the webcam and take it apart first, but luckily the Philips SPC900 webcam is really easy to take apart and add your eyepiece adaptor to.
Remove monitor clip
The large plastic clip on the webcam can be removed, there is no screw or anything you can really break here, just pry and pull the long plastic clip away from the webcam.
Below is a picture of the clip after it has been removed.
Remove outer lens cover
First of all you will need to pry off the outer lens cover of the SPC900, I did this myself with a small jewellery type screwdriver – the smallest I could find. You may be able to see from the photos that I did manage to slightly scratch/indent the plastic where I inserted the screwdriver.
After you get the screwdriver in, just gently pull out the lens cover, which once out completely, looks like the image below.
Unscrew the main lens
Now just unscrew the main lens cover until you can take it out.
Remember – do not leave the sensor open to the air for too long as dust could get in. So have your eyepiece adaptor ready.
The image above shows the webcam with no outer lens or main lens, and it’s now ready to have the adaptor added.
Now just screw in your eyepiece adaptor, the one I have fits really well. When you purchase your webcam eyepiece adaptor make sure you purchase the adaptor which is made for the SPC900 luckily this also fits the Logitech Quickcam Pro 4000 and 5000.
Once you have finished you will have your eyepiece adaptor ready for use. Mine is pictured with an extra screw-in clear lens to keep the dust away from the webcam CCD sensor.
Cover white light on webcam
The Philips SPC900 webcam has a white light which comes on when the webcam is in use which is very bright and annoying when out in the dark. Some people have used a black felt tip and coloured it in, instead in the photo below I have just added some blu tak and placed it over the light area, just in case I ever want to use the webcam as a normal webcam or even sell the webcam at a later date.
SPC900 Webcam has common screw mount
A nice thing about the Philips SPC900 webcam is that it has a screw-in mount socket, so you could always screw the webcam into a mini tripod or even a regular large tripod if you so desire.
Where to purchase the Philips SPC900 in the UK
I purchased my Philips SPC900 from Amazon, but Pixmania also sell the webcam. In 2007 mine cost £46 delivered through Amazon.co.uk. Other companies did stock the webcam but it did cost a lot more from them.
Overall Initial Impressions
After using the webcam once – compared to the Logitech Quickcam Pro 4000, the Philips SPC900 does seem to be a lot better for Astronomy use, even though both have CCD sensors.
The VLounge software that comes with the SPC900 webcam gives you a lot more control of the webcam – such as being able to change the brightness, contrast, gamma, shutter speed, frames per second and much more. You will need to play with these settings to get the best out of the SPC900.