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I would like to ask about solar imaging cameras, I am about to pull the trigger on one soon, I see them pop up on Astro Buy/Sell here and there but will buy new if I have to.

I would like to know about interface, many recommend USB 3.0, but it so happens that every time I see one pop up like the ZWO ASI120MM it is 2.0, the one with the “S” designation is 3.0. 

I understand 3.0 will be faster but is 2.0 a deal breaker? 3.0 is fairly recent, many of you have used 2.0 cams for years. Is there enough justification to give up one at a good deal in favor of a new ZWO ASI120MM-S?

thanks all!

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With the ZWO 120 old USB2 mono I had/have terrible newtons rings in ha .

With you being in Canada I would suggest you look at FLIR/Point Grey.

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11 minutes ago, Ibbo! said:

With the ZWO 120 old USB2 mono I had/have terrible newtons rings in ha .

Oh I don’t want Newton’s rings, could it have been a bad cam? I will look FLIR/point grey too thanks!

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Newtons rings are a bit of a Ha natural hazard, but ZWO 120 are known for it.

Though the 120 makes a decent planetary cam.

I beleive the newer ones are less prone.

Have a look round in the solar imaging section on here and also on Solarchat forum for advice.

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3 minutes ago, Ibbo! said:

I beleive the newer ones are less prone.

Thanks, I quickly ran through the FLIR/PG website, they are in another price range all together, I would stretch my budget if I really had to. The Flea3 seems like a bang up cam, but it leaves me with less for other accessories I’ll need.

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I thought with being more local to you would have a bit of a price break.

 

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Maybe on border fees and whatever other export taxes you may face across the pond but the set price as per website would not change for me. I’ll have a closer look, prices are in USD which means I have to consider 23 percent higher in CAD dollars. The Flea3 would set me back almost a thousand Canadian dollars which is out of the question.

Edited by Sunshine

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Yeah, we have the same issue with $ in Oz.

To get full disk coverage with the Lunt you need a bigger chip than the 120.

I recently bit the bullet and went for a small pixel large frame fast mono....

the ASI 183. Works well for me.

the ASI 174 was prone to newton rings, but easily solved with a T2 tilter.

 

Edited by Merlin66

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37 minutes ago, Merlin66 said:

Yeah, we have the same issue with $ in Oz.

To get full disk coverage with the Lunt you need a bigger chip than the 120.

I recently bit the bullet and went for a small pixel large frame fast mono....

the ASI 184. Works well for me.

the ASI 173 was prone to newton rings, but easily solved with a T2 tilter.

 

Not sure about chip size of the 120, but the mini does have a higher resolution than the 120, I definitely want full disc. Although, the FPS rate seems low, not sure what minimum favorable FPS would be for solar.

1929B60D-C1E9-4F9B-8B6C-D76584B8E9E4.png

Edited by Sunshine

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Ideally a sensor bigger than 6 x 6mm.

the faster the frame rate the better the chance of freezing the seeing and getting “lucky imaging” 20 fps is pretty good.

 

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I still use a DMK21au618, it is not as fast as the Zwo range and has a smaller maximum frame size (640x480). I don't seem to have too many problems with Newton's rings and my full disc images are always mosaics anyway, so the chip size doesn't bother me either.

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16 hours ago, Merlin66 said:

Ideally a sensor bigger than 6 x 6mm.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if Canon made a Rebel with a full res mono sensor!? That would be so nice! I’d get full res RAW files to play with, designated mono SLR would be taters!. None of these astro cams with miceoscopic chips but an APS mono 20mp chip and high mirrorless frame rate, several months ago I searched around for a strictly mono consumer cam I could adapt to AP, no such luck.

Edited by Sunshine

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I have owned both the ZWO 120 and the 174 (still use that one). The 174 does not suffer Newton rings and I run it at about 70 fps over USB 2 when doing mosaics. The chip is just big enough for a full disk in some scopes but will run slower obviously. I can’t comment on USB 3 performance. I have also used a ZWO 290 but chip and pixel size is a bit small for solar work at f/8. Example images in my link in the signature.

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I've had the ASI 174 up to 400 fps with USB3 and an SSD drive.

The pixel size (5.86micron) is more suited to longer focal lengths....

I'm please to hear you had no NR.....I still need the tilter.

I think the ASI 1600 is as close as you can get to a large framed mono.......

100_3362.JPG

12_11_39_no tilt.jpg

12_17_35_tilted.jpg

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Am I correct in assuming when you say “tilter” you’re talking about that thing between tha cam and Barlow?. I see thumb screws which I assume tilts the angle at which the image hits the chip which gets rid of any rings?

Edited by Sunshine

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Lucky me, I never had a sniff of NR with my 174 but the 120 did suffer.  400fps is dreamland for me unless I do a big hardware upgrade.  I use the 174 plus 2.5x barlow in either the Lunt 60 or ED80 and it's very forgiving.  I do use the same tilter as above though when using the SA100.

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