First off: MaximDL Pro is the version that supports PVCAM.
I've not seen any real complaints on the PCI card - no they are not pure SCSI.
What shutter depends on How much of a DIY project you want it to be. You can buy shutters that are capable of being installed and ready to go, but they run in the $500 range from Uniblitz and Melles Griot.
Reliability- I've got a cam that has a flaw on the shutter circuit, but I bought it that way just to get the shutter.
Since these were Labratory Grade cameras, I'm sure that life expectancy might depend on the life they already lived. (and we don't know that info) Again the "jury rigging"/custom work is 99% on the shutter so is really not reflected on the main system involved.
An 8300 camera is a noisy DSLR on a hot night in comparison the the KAF6303E
Image thread from early last month here
No Calibration frames of any kind were used. Could they have been better if I did calibrate? Certainly! but for just practice and fun I didn't find it required. I get '0' vignetting on my AT65EDQ with this camera, and didn't notice any when used on my AT66ED when I used a TRF2008 FF/FR.
They are blooming sensors, so it takes a little experimentation to find the happy spot, and technique for eliminating. Not as much of a problem with Narrow band filters, but with LRGB it happens pretty fast.
For an all around use camera, I wouldn't suggest it, but if you want to do some narrow band imaging I would definately choose this over an 8300!