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I measured my setup times when i did my last imaging run. Absolutely shocking 🤔
Step 1: unmount 8" quattro, disassemble EQ6 into 3 parts, move parts to terrace and reassemble EQ6, remount 8", without counterweights: 6 minutes 50 seconds (correct position marked on terrace, with right arm hurt, good time )
Step 2: Mount counterweights and set scope to park position: 1 minute 55 secs
Step 3: Connect power sources and connect all cabling: 20 minutes
Step 4: get the computer and software running (on a very good night): 10 minutes
Step 5: Let my old QHY8 cam and the scope cool down: 1 hour - otherwise i get strong gradients!
Total prep time: 1 hour 39 minutes. Obviously, the cable time could be improved massively by training. But even if we could get the cabling time to zero, i'd get only down to 1h24', with the total time being dominated by the cooling of my rig.
Open question: As i would not leave my cam outside, there seems no real possibly to cut down significantly on my prep time, even with a small obsy? Or am i doing something wrong?
P.S.: Getting an expensive cam is right now no good option
I recently upgraded to a purpose made astro-camera (Atik Horizon Color). The learning curve has definitely been noticeable, but I cant figure a couple things out. For some reason the pictures are grey scale when using N.I.N.A. I have tried different binning and formats, but the image is always black and white.
If I use the ATIK software (Infinity,Dusk) there is an option for 'Color Binning', and that seems to have fixed it for those programs, but N.I.N.A doesn't seem to have that option (you can not select anything for binning, or select 1x1, 2x2 ect.). But what makes it weirder is that the preview is always color using N.I.N.A. I used a pinhole lens cover to take pictures of my computer screen and it always shows up as color images. However, if I take that exact image file that previews in color and move it to pixinsight, it is grey-scale.
Is this a binning thing, file format problem? At this point I am just confused, if the preview of the image is color shouldn't the image data be color as well?
So far all the problems I have had with this camera have just been simple things that were new to me, but this one is really throwing me for a loop. Thanks for any help.
I've attached a couple images. The first you can see the NINA preview is color, as well with the couple other I took in the bottom right. And the other in a photo of trying to color saturate the stretched image in Pixinsight, and it says that it cannot saturate a grey-scale image. I have tried this with Tif, Fits, and various binning types.
Hi, this question has probably been done to death here, but can I ask the community to help me decide on a new camera?
After struggling with my very glitchy QHY5LIIc camera for a while, as well as having a forced break from astronomy, I have decided to get a new camera. After all the problems I've been having with the QHY, I really don't want to use this manufacturer again. I know lots of people use them quite happily, but once bitten ...
I have been looking at the ZWO cameras - OSC, as I haven't the time, clear skies, or patients to do LRGB imaging!
I have about £250 to spend, which I may be able to push to £300 if I wait a bit. ? So I've been looking at the ASI224MC, ASI290MC and the ASI178MC cameras.
I mainly do planetary/Luna imaging, but I have also dabbled in a bit of DSO and would like to continue with both. I have a C9.25 and a ST80 guide scope. I know these aren't ideal for DSOs but please humour me!
I think from the specs/information that the 224 is probably the best option. Although the resolution and QE are the worst of the three, the well depth and read noise are the best and the fps is pretty good too.
I don't know if there are better/cheaper cameras using the same chips, such as Altair's range. I just don't want to make the same mistake that I did with the QHY!n
Any help/advice you can give will be much appreciated.?
A bit of an odd one aspect ratio wise, but fun to put together - first light for my new ASI294MC OSC and technically my first experimental attempt at a mosaic!
My first stab at using the camera meant I went for 30 second subs, I need to experiment more to settle on my ideal sub length...still, the results are decent for a low integration time of 1.7 hours.
I love the Orion constellation and if I had the skies and time, I would mosaic the whole thing, but failing that, I can do bits and pieces! Orion's Belt is amazing to me, the three stars, Alnitak, Alnilam and Mintaka, very distinctive in the night sky.
Full details on Astrobin.
Thanks for looking!
£450 including UK Next Day Special Delivery
Made by Diffraction Limited in Canada, owners of SBIG Cameras
Resolution 10.7MP, 3760 x 2840 pixels
Sensor Size 17.9 mm x 13.5 mm, 22.5mm diagonal (Four Thirds format ?)
4.75um x 4.75um pixel size
16 bit A/D
Binning 2x2 or 4x4
Exposures 0.01sec to 24hrs, 0.001 sec to 24hrs (2x2, 4x4 Bin)
Regulated Thermoelectric (TEC) Cooling with Fan
Cooling Range 20C° below ambient
Dark Signal (at 0° C) 2e-/pixel/second
Dynamic Range 64 dB
Full Well Capacity 25,000 e-
Quantum Efficiency 32% @ 630 nm; 42% @ 550 nm; 40% @ 470 nm
Read Noise (RMS) 16 e-
Optical Window High transmission Schott B270 glass
Optical Coatings IR cutoff and anti-reflection multi-coatings
Shutter Internal Mechanical
Sub-Framing Full, Half, Quarter, selectable
Weight 0.91 kg
Power Requirements 12V DC 2.5Amp, tip positive
Back Focus Distance 26mm from M42 x 0.75 T2 flange
Comes with AstroFX software, written by the Maxim DL people.
With this you can set up automatic acquisition sequences to capture FITS Lights, Darks, Bias, and Flats, and then takes you step-by-step through a complete processing process
Or you can acquire FITS images, stack with DSS, and process with PS etc
Unusual for a colour sensor, Binning allows you to match the camera's pixel size to your focal length
Cylindrical shape is ideal for Fastar/ HyperStar setups
In the package:
Nightscape Camera with 2" Nosepiece
1.5M USB cable
Software CD containing:
Celestron and ASCOM Nightscape drivers
Nightscape Installation and User Guide
AstroFX User Guide
FitsView FITS Viewer
A DSS Master Dark to get you going - made from 23 Bin2x2 subs of 600 seconds at -20C
£450 including UK Next Day Special Delivery
UK BUYERS ONLY PLEASE
NGC 2175 "The Monkey Head Nebula"
Thanks for looking