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Imager or DSLR


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Hi all,

I'm looking to get into imaging and I don't have a fortune to spend.

I see imagers like the DSI 2 for about £250 new on ebay.

But they're pretty low resolution.

I'm wondering if a DSLR and a t-mount might be better?

I suspect the DSI has less interference on long exposures though.

Assuming that's what you're paying for.

but they seem rare second hand and I read lots of bad things about them conking out after little use.

Would a DSLR on prime focus be suitable?

Any low end camera recommendations welcome.

I've always bought canon's but they were all CMOS.

Any advice?

Lets say a budget of £300 ish, new or used i don't care.

Thanks,

Mark.

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The budget CCDs are pretty poor and limited (I know, I've been there!). Just look at some of the superb DSLR images on this forum. I've decided that, until I can stretch to a minimum of the Atik 314l, I'll stick with my Canon.

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Thanks both,

I've had the 300D and 350D and used them a lot in photography.

They're CMOS sensors though.

How do they fair on long exposures?

It would be nice to get another 350D as I already have the T-mount for it in a draw.

PS do they need to be modded and if so can i do it myself?

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Mark,

(if you haven't already got it) you'll find the book Making Every Photon Count (by SGL's very own steppenwolf & now onto it's 2nd Edition) helpful in getting started.

Easy to read, it's full of advice aimed at the imaging novice, including choosing the right equipment, tips 'n' tricks and lots of other vital stuff.

The imaging section, too, is full of experienced, talented folk who, I'm sure, will be more than happy to share advice and guidance with you.

As Olly says, focus on the mount first and foremost. Get that right and everything else will be that much easier and more likely to go well.

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Thanks both,

I've had the 300D and 350D and used them a lot in photography.

They're CMOS sensors though.

How do they fair on long exposures?

I use my unmodded 450d (similar, I guess, in performance to the 350d) for fairly long exposures and have produced some reasonable images (if I do say so myself!). e.g here , here and here.

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Hi Mark,

You can certainly get some great images with a DSLR and, as said, above a DSLR can serve a dual purpose, in that it can be used for everyday photography (until you delve into the route of getting is modded, but thats another discussion.)

As Olly said, definitely concentrate on the mount as that is the most important piece of kit. Its pointless sticking the best CCD or DSLR on an unstable, wobbly mount - trust me, been there, done that!!!!

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I'm a CCD imager as well, be that with a couple of years experience, which in the UK is nothing due to the weather, I must confess I had a Meade scope before getting into imaging, so my plan was to use the DSI as a guide camera eventually, at the moment I'm playing with it using my DSI on the ETX 90 mounted on the main scope and my ATIK16c with a focal reducer in the main tube, my plans are to get a decent CCD, looking at the ATIK 314 or 320 at the moment. The ATIK383 would be nice but need to save up a bit more for that puppy.

Edited by Si W
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Thanks all.

David_o - Thanks i'll add that to my book list, i've heard of it before. Will order that shortly.

Mount - I've the LXD 75 Meade mount which I think is ok.

I've seen images from others with this mount and they seem to cope.

I think DSLR sounds like the way forward for me.

I've read a few forums etc saying the 400D and newer models are far better

for less noise and hot spots. So I think I'll see if i can get a 400D while i'm at it.

Looking at the IR mod i'll have a go with it first and see what i think.

If it favours blue too much i'll mod it myself, that should be fun..!

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Ill go with a DSLR also.

Main reason been it has far more uses than a dedicated astro CCD and is considerably cheaper.

After time and some saving LOL a CCD could be considered as a great upgrade.

I would look at a 1000D or a 450D, both are very capable.

Edited by Earl
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Hi Mark , I'm a novice at imaging and using a 1000d with great success .

I eventually want to get into CCD imaging but the thought of all those cables etc puts me orf lol

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Hi Mark , I'm a novice at imaging and using a 1000d with great success .

I eventually want to get into CCD imaging but the thought of all those cables etc puts me orf lol

Cables or not, CCD is easier than DSLR, believe me!

Olly

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Well I just ordered a Canon 400D.

I was tempted with the Nikon as they're CCD which i thouht might run cooler but I read a few reviews and it seems canon comes out on top.

I got the 400D because I read that this model and newer ones have less amp glow in the corners. Anything above this i just can't afford.

If I can get images half as good as the ones i've seen i'll be - A. Amazed and B. Happy.

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Great choice. Canons are known to be the best at AP. As for amp glow darks go a long way to resolve this. I have a D200 and the amp glow is hideous on a single sub but my darks sort it all out.

Edited by Digz
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