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2 ccd cameras- one mono one colour


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I'm toying with the idea of using 2 ccd cameras to image with. The mono camera being used to capture the L channel & the colour camera the RGB. This would leverage a bit more of the limited sky time we get at the moment.

I'm not keen on OSC cameras so could this be viable? as I've learnt most of the really useful information is held in the L channel. I'm thinking of experimenting with the Atik 460 OSC first & seeing how this pans out. It might be a very expensive mistake if I tried it with Atik 11000 colour & did not find it a working solution.

Let me know your thoughts & even better if you have tried this

Edited by pyrasanth
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I tried this some years ago and it was not the panacea I had imagined. I used the mono and colour variants of the SBIG ST10XE; the biggest issue I encountered (apart form the fact that most nights continued to be cloud covered) was due to being lumbered with the fixed bayer filter matrix in the OSC camera. Astronomical filters are designed with bandpass characteristics and crossover between filters suited to astro-imaging whilst Bayer filter arrays are designed for terrestrial daylight imaging. I was never happy with the colour I was able to achieve with the OSC. A secondary issue arises if the platescale and FOV are significantly different which can lead to image integration issues.

of course, YMMV




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I use that method with my mono converted canon 550D and a second RGB Canon 600D, this works perfectly as you say when combining LRGB data the "L" channel brings all the detail and usually the RGB data is blured prior to combine with the "L" data so you really don't need the details from teh color camera just the color data.

See here an example on M51 using this method:


M51 cor 10x3 min 1600 ISO + 17x5min 1600 iso with MONO 550D



M51 LRGB_crop @ 50 percent

Mono data only, not super deep, not enough time but...


M51 17x5 min @1600 ISO (9cº)_mono










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In my opinion a bad idea. I've had a spell with OSC and mono twin cameras (Atik 4000s), and that was fine, but I used them for Ha and OSC targets. You get the wrong colour balance because of the Bayer Matrix, which shoots twice as much green as red or blue. So in a one hour OSC run you get, in terms of RGB equivalence, 15 mins of red, 15 mins of blue and 30 mins of green. Not at all what you want!

In terrestrial photography green works fairly well as luminance. (This is the thrust of Bayer's patent.) In astrophotogrphy it does not. 

I'm far more productive with two mono cameras than I was with OSC and mono, contrary to what I expected to to be the case.


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