Jump to content


Photo

Why use video over CCD cameras for visual??

  • Please log in to reply
43 replies to this topic

#26 rmollise

rmollise

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 15697
  • Joined: 06 Jul 2007

Posted 12 February 2013 - 12:25 PM

I did. Not sure how to use it with wifi and without internet though? Seems pointless to hook it up to a computer with wires and then broadcast it to another computer that is not on the net.


I'm not sure what you used, but neither wi-fi nor Internet is needed to run a Mallincam.

If you want to broadcast over the Internet, you do need an Internet connection, but you can also record your images for later broadcast. Or just view them on the monitor, or record them for viewing later at home on a computer or big screen TV. You don't even need a computer to do that.

In any event, none of that has a thing to do with the cameras' hyper circuitry. ;)

#27 mclewis1

mclewis1

    Thread Killer

  • ****-
  • Posts: 11006
  • Joined: 25 Feb 2006
  • Loc: New Brunswick, Canada

Posted 12 February 2013 - 01:42 PM

Simple and short question, what is in reality behind the Hyper circuit _name_ ? IT's just a name, but whatever circuitry bears that name could be groundbreaking or could be trivial. Until we find out, it's just another marketing name for an analog front end .

Matt,

Just a name for Rock's low noise, high gain exposure management system. It appears it's been used in one form or another on every Mallincam (with the exception of the Jr.) that offered more than the 128x 2.1s integration time. Interestingly that includes the new Universe camera which is not a video camera and therefore very different from the "traditional" Mallincam's. This "Hyper" circuitry has been one of the clearest benefits and differentiators over other similar video cameras.

The circuitry and it's capabilities have certainly evolved over time. The original Mallincam Hyper model offered 6 and 12s integration (and this seems to have been the first time the term "Hyper" had been used), then 7/14/28/56s with the Hyper Plus model. The VSS uses a pot instead of switches to change the amount of integration and offers a total of something like 140s. The Xtreme offers even better granularity and a longer total time (999 seconds which maybe an arbitrary limit from the wireless remote and PC software).

It's also interesting that he has increased the amount of integration at the request of his customers but his own interest clearly lies with less than 30s times. My assumption is that his video cameras remain optimized for integration times of something less than 60s but are obviously capable of far longer.

#28 rmollise

rmollise

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 15697
  • Joined: 06 Jul 2007

Posted 12 February 2013 - 03:06 PM

I have had excellent results with longer exposure times, as have other users. It's not so much a matter of them not being "optimum," so much as not being needed. 60-seconds will easily bring back scads of LEDA galaxies, and the camera is sensitive enough that over 30-second exposures begin to be problematical because of light pollution unless you are at a good dark site. ;)

#29 jambi99

jambi99

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 213
  • Joined: 14 Aug 2010
  • Loc: Québec, Canada

Posted 12 February 2013 - 06:01 PM

I already watched your gallery numerous time. Actually, thats what made me take the ccd route. :bow:

#30 mattflastro

mattflastro

    Vendor - Astrovideo Systems

  • -----
  • Posts: 622
  • Joined: 31 Jul 2009
  • Loc: Brevard County , FL

Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:30 PM

I have had excellent results with longer exposure times, as have other users. It's not so much a matter of them not being "optimum," so much as not being needed. 60-seconds will easily bring back scads of LEDA galaxies, and the camera is sensitive enough that over 30-second exposures begin to be problematical because of light pollution unless you are at a good dark site. ;)

Unfortunately that's almost an undestatement about light pollution .
I used to think 20 years ago that my Florida skies were light polluted because I couldn't see the Milky Way (except when hurricanes hit and power went out).
Now I think they're light polluted because I can barely see a few stars .
Now I _wish_ I could have those light polluted skies of 20 years ago .
Probably light pollution is one more reason to use video over visual .
Light pollution filters could be used to cut skyglow , in conjunction with longer integration times to bring in dim objects. Can't do that visually to the same extent as video.

#31 jambi99

jambi99

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 213
  • Joined: 14 Aug 2010
  • Loc: Québec, Canada

Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:51 PM

Bingo...

#32 Jay B

Jay B

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 106
  • Joined: 15 Jul 2008
  • Loc: Richmond, Virginia USA

Posted 12 February 2013 - 11:17 PM

For the question above, I am experimenting with the DBK 618 imaging source camera. As soon as the weather clears, I will try it again, and I will try to post some examples of what I am able to get with this camera - in semi rural skys using a 9.25 celestron cpc.

#33 jimb1001

jimb1001

    Messenger

  • *****
  • Posts: 462
  • Joined: 14 Nov 2009
  • Loc: Florida

Posted 13 February 2013 - 01:26 AM

I find that just outside Tampa I can't use more than 15-20 seconds before the sky glow washes everything out.
Lots and lots of things to look at with 15 seconds, though.

#34 rmollise

rmollise

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 15697
  • Joined: 06 Jul 2007

Posted 13 February 2013 - 07:51 AM

Yep...15-seconds is my usual exposure here, but I can push it to 30-seconds - 1-minute in parts of the sky, so I guess I'm pretty lucky.

#35 TimP

TimP

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 47
  • Joined: 24 Feb 2009

Posted 14 February 2013 - 09:26 PM

If you want to find out, you might try actually using a Mallincam. :lol:


I did. Not sure how to use it with wifi and without internet though? Seems pointless to hook it up to a computer with wires and then broadcast it to another computer that is not on the net.


The vast majority of Mallincam users don't broadcast on the internet. I no longer setup near visual observers unless there is a designated area for the video guys. Frankly I lost my patience with the faint and fuzzies in light polluted skies. I used to hear guys say " There you see it" I would always say, um no. Now since I started video observing I don't have to guess at what I'm looking at. There it is popping out of the screen in color. I have many ways to setup my observing for the night. I can opt to just hook my Vizio LED directly to the camera and use the buttons on the back of the cam to control it and share with my neighbors or I can setup my laptop. There is a learning curve but you will have that in almost everything you do.

#36 ccs_hello

ccs_hello

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 6551
  • Joined: 03 Jul 2004

Posted 14 February 2013 - 11:29 PM

I think the topic of
- where to place the display device (local or remotely),
- if viewed remotely, use wired or wireless method (e.g., coax cable, modulated analog video RF signal, long Ethernet cable, super-long USB extender cable, WiFi, etc.),
- how to get the video/image displayed on that display device <-- the signal format (baseband analog video, HDMI, SDI, USB, Firewire, packetized image format, etc.) and
- what type of display device to choose from (a video monitor, a TV, a large screen projector, a local laptop screen, the back of a digital camera --> its own tiny LCD screen, remotely seeing the images/video using another PC, smartphone, or iPad, or even broadcast it over the Internet and let many "watch" simultaneously.)

probably isn't what the OP was looking for in the first place. :) :)

All kind of combinations and many possibilities. And almost all of them can be applied to video or CCD imager one way or another, if you are creative :) :).

Clear Skies!

ccs_hello

#37 ccs_hello

ccs_hello

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 6551
  • Joined: 03 Jul 2004

Posted 14 February 2013 - 11:59 PM

...
Now I think they're light polluted because I can barely see a few stars .
Now I _wish_ I could have those light polluted skies of 20 years ago .
Probably light pollution is one more reason to use video over visual .
Light pollution filters could be used to cut skyglow , in conjunction with longer integration times to bring in dim objects. Can't do that visually to the same extent as video.


To further drill down Matt's statement:
Probably light pollution is one more reason to use video over visual .

I think the desirable attributes are
- high gain imaging devices (I am not talking just the sensor itself, but the downstream signal chain, post-the-image-sensor),
- low noise (especially when the image system is in the high gain mode) and proper image processing to make the resulted (frequently updated) images visually appealing,
- need long exposure to gather enough photons, but not super long in which light pollution will ruin it,
- need "fast" telescope optics (including use focal reducer) to concentrate photon flux
- and maybe more secondary attributes, e.g. ease of use, even a caveman... :) , self-contained unit (one piece, two, three, four ... pieces), cost, leadtime, power consumption, higher spatial resolution, larger FoV coverage, high S/N, better customer service, more followers (less risks if market crashes), "device looks beautiful", (add more of your own wishes here) ...

There is no single product that can win out in all attributes. Heck, even some popular vendors here offer different type of devices for different needs.

I would just replace the word "video" with "Video and Electronically Assisted Technologies", as this forum's title says.
Probably light pollution is one more reason to use "Video and Electronically Assisted Technologies" over visual (visually observing).

P.S. apology to the Image Intensifier folks here. These have even higher gain than regular CCD based image devices thus long exposure (even 1 second accumulation) is not required.

Clear Skies!

ccs_hello

#38 jgraham

jgraham

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 13851
  • Joined: 02 Dec 2004
  • Loc: Miami Valley Astronomical Society

Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:08 AM

"I would just replace the word "video" with "Video and Electronically Assisted Technologies", as this forum's title says."

Exactly. I do quite a mix of visual, imaging, and camera-assisted observing from my red-zone back yard. (Naked-eye I can typucally see stars in the magnitude 3-4ish range.) On the camera-assisted observing side of things I just love how versatile is is, how deep I can go (down to around 18th magnitude using 60 second exposures), and how much detail I can see, all from the comfort of my house. However, the camera-assisted observing experience is still different than the visual observing experience and whereas I do most of my camera-assisted observing with a 6" scope I have a 16" and a 16.5" scope for visual. I also find that the two observing styles compliment each other wonderfully well. I have yet to see a camera of any kind that can capture the true colors and subtle (often very subtle) beauty of the true visual image, yet at the same time the camera-assisted image captures so much more detail it often tells me exactly where to look for details that visually I otherwise would have missed.

Neat stuff.

#39 Rossmon

Rossmon

    Messenger

  • *****
  • Posts: 404
  • Joined: 09 Jul 2010
  • Loc: Marin County, CA

Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:08 AM

You know, It sounds like there are some folks in this thread that really don't know much about video vs ccd imaging or at least they don't want to. The difficult science has already been spelled out for noobs to understand. Small chip big pixels, uber sensitivity. Big chip small pixels lower sensitivity. Some big CCD's can do binning, it helps but still not as sensitive. Time to stop considering, put your money where your mouth is, dream your own dreams, goodbye. I'm going outside to grab some nice colorful galaxies in 30s-60s without hardly trying. Hope your new equipment is the wise choice made after looking at more sites than this one. They are easy to find, Just look in most peoples signatures for the product names.

Rossmon to you

#40 MRNUTTY

MRNUTTY

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1862
  • Joined: 22 Nov 2011
  • Loc: Mendon, MA

Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:45 AM

Don't get me wrong, i think the mallincam work very well. But for the price difference i just don't see the point. Also, i don't understand people that are so allergic to use a laptops on the field. You can get a decent small netbook with 9" screen for200$. Its about the same price has a good quality lcd screen and its about the same size. Plus,you can use the netbook for other stuff.

:confused:


One problem with net books and the MallinCam is the program for MallinCam need 600 vertical pixels. Cheap net books all use a 1024x576 LCD. You have to scroll the MallinCam program up to get to the dialog button everytime use change something. Yucks! Otherwise, yeah cheap; I have four of them!

#41 mclewis1

mclewis1

    Thread Killer

  • ****-
  • Posts: 11006
  • Joined: 25 Feb 2006
  • Loc: New Brunswick, Canada

Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:55 AM

John,

Try Tom Veik's Mallincam Xtreme control program. It is nice and compact and works very well. There's no integrated video so you'll also need to run something like SharpCap or Amcap (but this gives you even more flexibility in terms of open windows).

#42 rmollise

rmollise

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 15697
  • Joined: 06 Jul 2007

Posted 21 February 2013 - 02:10 PM

Not really a problem. Almost all netbooks can be kicked up a notch in resolution, whether by making a small change in the registry, or by using a utility program. My ASUS netbook is running at 1024x768. Circles on the screen look slightly off round, but I can see everything and the Mallincam software (and everything else) works great. With some netbooks, the "problem" is overcome by allowing scrolling of the screen, which can work fine too.

#43 *skyguy*

*skyguy*

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2015
  • Joined: 31 Dec 2008
  • Loc: Western New York

Posted 21 February 2013 - 05:57 PM

Almost all netbooks can be kicked up a notch in resolution, whether by making a small change in the registry, or by using a utility program.


My Samsung netbook can also run at 1024x768 (without scrolling) using the utility program, "Easy Resolution Manager", that was pre-loaded on the computer. It was one of the reasons I bought the Samsung ... it's a great little netbook!

#44 MRNUTTY

MRNUTTY

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1862
  • Joined: 22 Nov 2011
  • Loc: Mendon, MA

Posted 25 February 2013 - 05:30 PM

Thanks Mark, I'll give it a try. I didn't want to move my newly-spared MacBook Air out there, if a pile of cheap netbooks sufficed :-)






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics