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Danon

First mono camera

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Hi. I'm thinking about choosing my first mono camera to my setup. Now I have HEQ5 belt mod and SW ED80 with flattener. I'm begginer,so 4/3" sensor is minimum due to FOV. I always want CCD but, they're quite expensive for me, so my only choice is second hand kaf8300 sensor. But friends told me that everyone use Zwo asi1600 now,and there is no point using kaf8300 now due to old chip. In compare to kaf8300, camera is quite new, and kaf8300 sensor is 10+ years old sensor. Also I could buy an 65Q/420mm refractor from my friend to have even greater FOV. But I wondering about which setup will be best. If Kaf8300 and ASI1600 is the same price when second hand, is worth buy a kaf8300 now? Or its too old and lots of second hand might be not work for so long. 

Also I listed setup list for every choice. I wondering only that if I wont be regreting choosing larger pixel due to final resoltion of detail.

ED80 + Asi1600 - 1.54"/pixel

ED80+ Kaf8300 - 2.18"/pixel
65Q + Asi1600 - 1.9"/pixel
65Q+ Kaf8300 - 2.65"/pixel

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A KAF8300 camera is just as good today as it was 10 years ago - they haven't got any worse. So there is still just as much "point" to buying one as there was years ago, The question is really whether the same amount of money would buy something better? An ASI1600 might be one option, but it is only one of many possibilities. And remember: people tend to suggest equipment they have bought, rather than admit there could be something better.

On a practical note, look at the weight of the camera. I have found that the focusser on my ED80 will carry a DSLR, but the weight of a cooled CMOS camera is too much and the focusser slips.

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Thanks for anwser. So what are other "better" options except Asi? I did research but on 4/3 mono I saw only those. There ale lot of smaller chip but reducing fov significantly

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1 hour ago, Danon said:

Thanks for anwser. So what are other "better" options except Asi? I did research but on 4/3 mono I saw only those. There ale lot of smaller chip but reducing fov significantly

 

For a start 4/3 is the aspect ratio of the sensor not the physical size if the sensor diagonal.

There is a Atik 460EX mono in the for sale section its less noisy than the KAF8300 and does not even require dark frames to get the most out of it so that might be another option. It will still give a very nice FOV if you pair it with the 65Q. 

It would give you a FOV of 1.70degrees x 1.36degrees at 2.23 arc seconds per pixel.

That is actually very similar to the FOV of the ASI1600 with your current ED80 scope.

I would personally say that if you want to hang a cooled camera and filter wheel off the back of a SW ED80 you would be well advised to get a focuser upgrade. 

The ASI1600mm pro is fine, but you need to be aware that its got a issue with micro lens diffraction pattern effect that bothers some people more than others. Hence worth looking it up before you make a choice. 

Adam  

 

 

 

Edited by Adam J
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5 minutes ago, Adam J said:

For a start 4/3 is the aspect ratio of the sensor not the physical size if the sensor diagonal.

Actually in this context 4/3 sensor does specify diagonal size. One way of specifying diagonal of the sensor is to use fractions of the inch - 1/3", 1/2", 1/1.7, 2/3", etc. I don't think 4/3 means 4/3", but it is "legitimate" sensor size name - "Four thirds" or "Micro four thirds" - stands for diagonal of 21.60mm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_sensor_format

 

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The Kodak chip is a classic..still a very good sensor, both atik, qsi still use these chip in their camera's.. some of the top imagers use these camera's..

The 8300 chip has some very deep wells so if you're a long exposure narrowband type of imager then it's still a very good buy..

Things that put me off cmos atm are, some suffer with ampglow that need good calibration..some suffer with micro lensing on bright stars.. all will need plenty of storage space on a laptop etc as a friend had a terra bite of data on one target..so if you have an old computer it's going to fill it up fast..

Pro's and con's on both types of cameras, just got to work out what's best for you..

Sampling...i look at this only to get your image scale...unless you're severely under or oversampling it don't affect the image too dramatically..

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I forgot to mention that Im looking mainly for doing Ha from suburbs. I could be under dark sky about one week in a month, so I won't be doing lrgb often. Mainly doing Ha and narrowband and time to time trip to do some HaLrgb.

Big cons in Poland where I live, is weather. Rainy summer makes Cmos cameras really good option due to low redout noise. But overall time for exposure should be the same as CCD right? 

Atik 460ex looks really nice but his but his well copare to kaf 8300 is "swallow". 

I have chance to buy Atik 383l M for 900£ thats why I created this thread. 

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21 minutes ago, Adam J said:

There is a Atik 460EX mono in the for sale section its less noisy than the KAF8300 and does not even require dark frames to get the most out of it so that might be another option.

I would personally say that if you want to hang a cooled camera and filter wheel off the back of a SW ED80 you would be well advised to get a focuser upgrade. 

Adam

 

Just to address these points, from a practical point of view, as a user of both the KAF-8300 and the SW ED80.

1) Dark frames require zero effort to take and use.  You take them at night when it's cloudy, and one set will do a season.  Dont let the requirement of needing dark frames put you off the purchase of such a sensor.

2) Whilst a focuser upgrade could be considered, I would suggest there is no need to upgrade your focuser, as the existing focuser is more than adequate for my cooled camera and EFW.

 

A second hand KAF-8300 can be got for under £700 in the QHY9 form, and a bit more in the Atik 383L+ form.  £900 seems like quite strong money for the Atik 383L+ if there are no accessories.  I have both the QHY and Atik, and would say that there is little difference.  The Atik perhaps maintains temperature just that little bit more accurately - for example two nights ago I imaged at -20deg C, and all the Atik subs were recorded at -20.  This could be due to the more open design of the QHY9.  The QHY9 has a couple of subs at -19 and a couple at -21, but the majority were -20.  But I'm really splitting hairs here.  The Atik is probably more pleasing to look at, but noisier in operation.

 

I have absolutely no experience of the CMOS cameras however, but have not been disappointed in my choice of CCD KAF-8300.

 

I can post images if you wish.

 

Clear Skies

Adam.

 

 

 

 

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50 minutes ago, tooth_dr said:

1) Dark frames require zero effort to take and use.  You take them at night when it's cloudy, and one set will do a season.  Dont let the requirement of needing dark frames put you off the purchase of such a sensor.

True but my point was that its an indicator of the quality of the sensor. Not that it takes time. 

50 minutes ago, tooth_dr said:

2) Whilst a focuser upgrade could be considered, I would suggest there is no need to upgrade your focuser, as the existing focuser is more than adequate for my cooled camera and EFW.

That is possibly true in your case however, having owned one and observed variable comments from fine to not fine from others my working assumption is that they are not all made equal and the QC is not top grade on this item. However the lens is normally very good. 

 

Edited by Adam J

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I saw a lots of images from Atik but why not. You could show some. 

This atik "comes with all the cables and box". That's count as accesories? :D

About Dark frames. Why not using dithering? Ccd has no amp glow and lot of people dont use darks when they use dithering 

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1 hour ago, Danon said:

I forgot to mention that Im looking mainly for doing Ha from suburbs. I could be under dark sky about one week in a month, so I won't be doing lrgb often. Mainly doing Ha and narrowband and time to time trip to do some HaLrgb.

Big cons in Poland where I live, is weather. Rainy summer makes Cmos cameras really good option due to low redout noise. But overall time for exposure should be the same as CCD right? 

Atik 460ex looks really nice but his but his well copare to kaf 8300 is "swallow". 

I have chance to buy Atik 383l M for 900£ thats why I created this thread. 

The thing that you need to remember is that well depth if not important its dynamic range that is important and that has a dependency on read noise.

The other thing is that you can quite happily use 10min exposures with the 460EX in narrow band but will need 20 or more likely 30min exposures to get the very best from a 8300 based camera. The ability to do long expsoures with the 8300 is not a benefit its a requirement as unlike less noisy sensors it cant produce equal results with shorter exposures. You can still take fantastic images with the 8300 its just that the people making best use of them are in Warm climates and dont suffer from cloud that might scupper a long exposure you also need to be able to guide for 30mins. 

I would say that 900 is a top end price for a ATIK 383L used these days.....

Adam 

 

Edited by Adam J

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5 minutes ago, Danon said:

I saw a lots of images from Atik but why not. You could show some. 

This atik "comes with all the cables and box". That's count as accesories? :D

About Dark frames. Why not using dithering? Ccd has no amp glow and lot of people dont use darks when they use dithering 

You will want to use darks with the 8300 dithering or not. But as above its not that time consuming. 

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12 minutes ago, Adam J said:

That is possibly true in your case however, having owned one and observed variable comments from fine to not fine from others my working assumption is that they are not all made equal and the QC is not top grade on this item. However the lens is normally very good. 

 

'Possibly true'?

(please tread carefully with that comment, I have no need to come on here and make something up).

 

My advice was based on my experience, not on conjecture and assumption :D

 

 

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9 minutes ago, tooth_dr said:

'Possibly true'?

(please tread carefully with that comment, I have no need to come on here and make something up).

 

My advice was based on my experience, not on conjecture and assumption :D

 

 

I did not have it in my head that you are making something up and did not intend to imply otherwise, the main issue is that I am at work and so typing fast so as not to get caute on here lol. I am sure your focuser is very good, but I do know others that have been good with a DSLR but not good with a bigger load. Its not up to moonlight or feather touch or even Baader levels of quality, I hope we can agree that. You can tighen it to make it work but that just results in a horrible time focusing as it starts to stick when you apply small adjustments. 

  

Edited by Adam J

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1 hour ago, tooth_dr said:

2) Whilst a focuser upgrade could be considered, I would suggest there is no need to upgrade your focuser, as the existing focuser is more than adequate for my cooled camera and EFW

I'll happily second this. The stock focuser on my ED80 is holding the 0.85 reducer, mini 5 slot EFW and a 1600mm pro with no issue. Repeatable and consistent focuser positioning with a Sesto Sento motor. 

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7 minutes ago, Adam J said:

the main issue is that I am at work and so typing fast so as not to get caute on here lol 

This made me laugh :D no harm done.

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56 minutes ago, Adam J said:

The other thing is that you can quite happily use 10min exposures with the 460EX in narrow band but will need 20 or more likely 30min exposures to get the very best from a 8300 based camera.

That is strong argument. Those images I've seen on astrobin, was from 10-15min subs only and still look good. I'm begginer, so probably I can't yet see any differences between 15min subs and 30 min. 

 

@tooth_dr How about Yours subs? How long they are?

Edited by Danon

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3 minutes ago, Danon said:

That is strong argument. Those images I've seen on astrobin, was from 10-15min subs only and still look good. I'm begginer, so probably I can't yet see any differences between 15min subs and 30 min. 

 

@tooth_dr How about Yours subs? How long they are?

I take 600s for Ha, and 300s for LRGB.

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Apart from the general stuff of CMOS versus CCD, amp glow, 12bit etc I feel the file size is the main drawback requiring a lot of storage.

8300 files around1600 kb versus ASI1600 around 5000kb ? maybe, can't remember, which soon adds up when taking short exposures whereas one 30 minute 8300 sub is still only 16,274kb

Dave

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15 minutes ago, Davey-T said:

Apart from the general stuff of CMOS versus CCD, amp glow, 12bit etc I feel the file size is the main drawback requiring a lot of storage.

8300 files around1600 kb versus ASI1600 around 5000kb ? maybe, can't remember, which soon adds up when taking short exposures whereas one 30 minute 8300 sub is still only 16,274kb

Dave

Yes and the number of subs and the need for Dark Flats etc with the ASI1600mm pro is something I find annoying owning one.

With the KAF8300 i think that the problems for me are with the mechanical shutter (people have those go wrong) and also 7e read noise and not very high Quantum Efficiency by modern standards. The pixels are a little chunky for shorter refactors too in my opinion. I guess for me it was a choice between the 460EX and the ASI1600mm pro not the ASI1600mm pro and the KAF8300.

I went for the ASI1600mm pro but to be honest I still flip flop on that choice now when I am running out of storage and for one large image with 4 panels taking 24 hours to stack it with dynamic distortion correction of APP, not that my PC is slow its a older i7 with 16gb of memory and an 1TB SSD.

A friend has a 460EX and gets fantastic results with it, less FOV than me but seems much less work too. I could easily convince myself to swap over. 

Adam

 

 

Edited by Adam J

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1 hour ago, Yawning Angel said:

I'll happily second this. The stock focuser on my ED80 is holding the 0.85 reducer, mini 5 slot EFW and a 1600mm pro with no issue. Repeatable and consistent focuser positioning with a Sesto Sento motor. 

This seems to be a predicament for a lot of ed80 owners such as myself.  I too, have had no issues so far with a dslr on the stock focusser but I have also heard reports from others who do.  When considering the expense of a feather touch/moonlight, I think i'd rather put that cost towards an Esprit.

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A lot of interpretation can be put upon the various figures, not sure how they arrive at the quoted QE of the 1600 ? but the results speak for themselves and there are some spectacular images taken with the "old" KAF8300 maybe not at the perfect arc sec / pixel and with it's snowstorm of hot pixels but non the worse for it and no faffing about with gain settings.

The one thing that makes the most difference to any astro' image with any camera is dark skies, so much easier to produce a decent image.

Dave

Edited by Davey-T

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4 minutes ago, Danon said:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OzGQxXzVaKroeswZXdcUr7VmhFsMDcH7/view?usp=sharing

This is link to Dark frame from Atik that was offer to me. Those strange pattenrs nearby center is worring me. There are hot pixel formed into some "scratch"? 

Can you save that as a JPEG and attach locally please!

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