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HyperStar 8 + Micro 4:3 Camera?

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#1 UnderDriven

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 02:52 PM

Hello. This is my first post. I did some AP 20 years ago on film, then I lost interest in astronomy. However, for the last few years I have been heavily into other types of photography and I recently dug out the old astronomy gear. I have been taking some Moon shots with my Meade 320--I can get some decent shots (see photo), but I'd like to upgrade to a better telescope. My main interest in the past was nebulae, and I used a Celestron 80mm short tube refractor for things like the North American Nebula--it worked okay with hypered film and a 30+ minute exposure...

I've been checking out all the latest telescopes and there is a lot to choose from! A couple of things have caught my eye, including the ES Comet Hunter and the Celestron EdgeHD 8. The EdgeHD is good for planetary and clusters, and with a reducer I can use it for the Moon. However, part of the appeal is the possibility of the HyperStar conversion, which yields a very fast lens. The problem is that Starizona claims that a DSLR will only work with the larger models. I checked their web site and the max diagonal is 27mm, and the backfocus is 39.8mm. While this precludes using a normal DSLR, I don't see why a Micro 4:3 mirrorless camera wouldn't work: 21mm sensor diagonal and 19.25 flange focal distance. Is there anything that prevents connecting a Micro 4:3 camera to the HyperStar 8 package?

Thanks, Keith

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#2 UnderDriven

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 02:58 PM

Sorry, I thought the image would be an attachment, not in the message...

#3 bilgebay

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 06:11 PM

The main problem is the camera body obstructs a big portion of C8's aperture.

#4 UnderDriven

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 06:50 PM

The main problem is the camera body obstructs a big portion of C8's aperture.


I thought that might be an issue, however the u4:3 bodies are not big--nothing near the size of a 35mm DSLR. The Sony NEX-5 is especially small. Although it has an APS-C sensor and there might be some vignetting, it should not obstruct the light path too much. And the NEX flange focal distance is even less than u4:3, at 18mm...

Keith

#5 Alfredo Beltran

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 10:06 PM

Hi Keith

You can check at Starizona's website here the cameras that are compatible with C8 EdgeHD Hyperstar.

Best regards,

Alfredo

#6 UnderDriven

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 10:18 PM

You can check at Starizona's website the cameras that are compatible with C8 EdgeHD Hyperstar.

Hi Alfredo. Yes, I've been to their web site. However, I suspect that they have not considered the use of mirrorless cameras like Micro 4:3 or the Sony NEX which have very short flange focal distances. Also, these cameras are smaller than normal DSLR cameras so they will not block as much light. My real question is whether anything would physically prevent attaching one of these cameras to the HyperStar unit. If not, I don't see why they could not be used. I have sent an email to Starizona, but I have not received a reply yet. I thought someone here might have a HyperStar 8 unit and could tell me if there is any reason an arbitrary camera could not be connected to the unit.

Cheers, Keith

#7 bilgebay

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 05:13 AM

Keith what is the back focus (bayonet to sensor) distance of your camera ?
Hyperstar backfocus (from mounting thread to focal plane): 39.8mm

I have just bought C8 Edge and a Hyperstar unit at NEAF last weekend. I can check anything you want or send you pics of the HS unit.

Physically there shouldn't be a problem but I guess the lack of control software is another problem. I want Canon EOS M very badly but lots of features are disabled or missing and there is no convenient way of controlling it via computer.

#8 UnderDriven

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 10:34 AM

Keith what is the back focus (bayonet to sensor) distance of your camera ?
Hyperstar backfocus (from mounting thread to focal plane): 39.8mm

Micro 4:3 is 19.25mm. Sony NEX is 18mm. Clearly small enough to work with the HyperStar 8. The only question is the ability to physically connect these cameras to the H8...

I have just bought C8 Edge and a Hyperstar unit at NEAF last weekend. I can check anything you want or send you pics of the HS unit.

I guess the issue is what threads are used to attach things to the H8 unit, and whether there is a way to connect to a standard T-mount for u4:3 or NEX...

Physically there shouldn't be a problem but I guess the lack of control software is another problem. I want Canon EOS M very badly but lots of features are disabled or missing and there is no convenient way of controlling it via computer.

Yes, the EOS M also has a short flange focal distance of 18mm, so that is another possibility. I guess Canon crippled the first model because they intended it for point & shoot users. However, if the system becomes more popular Canon should introduce more sophisticated models in the future. That doesn't help you now, unfortunately...

Cheers, Keith

#9 Starhawk

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 02:06 PM

You need to talk to Starizona. The list on the website is out of date- lots of stuff attaches even though they don't list it. For example, Pentax K mount adapters exist for Hyperstar, but aren't listed.

I'm personally interested in the Sony NEX cameras. They are really tiny and appear to work very well. There should be enough room there for a screw-in filter adapter to be part of the camera adapter (so 48mm format filters could be put in).

-Rich

#10 UnderDriven

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 02:45 PM

You need to talk to Starizona.

Hi Rich. I sent them an email but I haven't received a reply...

I'm personally interested in the Sony NEX cameras. They are really tiny and appear to work very well. There should be enough room there for a screw-in filter adapter to be part of the camera adapter (so 48mm format filters could be put in).

Yes, the NEX 5N would be a good choice. I don't see why it couldn't be used, but I'm not an expert on the HyperStar system...

Cheers, Keith

#11 Starhawk

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 05:54 PM

The ability to control it by WiFi is definitely interesting. You may want to keep an ear to the ground for an update to the NEX-7.

-Rich

#12 Footbag

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 05:59 PM

Attaching to the Hyperstar isn't the only factor. I know very little about the micro 4/3's cameras capabilities, but you would want to ensure they can shoot in true RAW format and do live view either over the USB or WiFi. Also, ensure they can take longer exposures then 30s.

#13 ewave

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 07:11 PM

I agree with Adam in this regard. There are other things to consider. These types of cameras are usually higher in noise as noted by others in the DSLR forum. This can be due to the smaller sensor size packed with pixels. Another thing to consider is any camera > 4 inches will give you > 50% obstruction in an 8" scope, and it doesn't end there. Some folks using HS use a nice circular aperture mask which can be made and placed in the back of the camera to get concentric pictures of the stars. Otherwise you will have some odd diffraction pattern in your pics. I know since I have tried this with my DSLR (T2i), it is just too big for my C9.25 edge. I may either wait for technology to produce smaller dslr cameras or get a ccd.
Just some food for thought.

#14 UnderDriven

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 07:53 PM

Hi Adam and Sean. Thanks for the advice. Yes, my G1 can shoot RAW and do live view via HDMI. I'm pretty sure it can shoot for as long as I want using the remote control (unfortunately a wired version). But I suppose I would just get a NEX-5N because it is a smaller camera...

However, in the end I will probably go with a smaller scope for now. I have to make sure I will stick with the hobby before I spend thousands of dollars. But maybe down the line I will pursue the HyperStar system...

Cheers, Keith

#15 Kevdog

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Posted 27 April 2013 - 01:23 PM

I have on Olympus E-M5 m43 camera. It has an awesome sensor and keeps up/beats most APS-C cameras.

The Olympus E-PM2 has the same sensor and is tiny. It would probably cause little vignetting if any.

All m43 cameras can definitely shoot RAW. It is a mirrorless DSLR. Then sensor is half the size of a full frame (2x crop instead of 1.6 crop of APS-C).

Most models can also take high quality video files as well. (Panasonic m4/3 cameras are the best at that).

I have my E-M5 connected to a T-adapter via a T-thread adapter ($20) and am still learning the AP aspect of things, but any shortcomings are from my experience, not the cameras.

Sadly though I don't think either the Panasonic or the Olympus can be controlled by computer. Olympus used to have software called Olympus Studio which did the computer control on their 4/3 DSLRs, but they discontinued it.

For examples of what the camera can do, here's my recent cave tour photos:
https://picasaweb.go...nsPhotoTourA...

And my feeble attempts at AP (I still need to collimate my C11, but my SolarMax 60 is pretty good):
Jupiter:
Posted Image

Sun:
Posted Image


With the sensor size, the camera is ~equivalent to a 20mm eyepiece and with a 2x barlow comes right at about 10mm. Both images were taken with the Orion shorty 2x Barlow in place. And again I'm sure I can get better quality images as I get better at AP. I've only taken a handful of pics so far!

The E-PM2 is tiny!
4.3 x 2.5 x 1.3 in.
(110 x 64 x 34 mm)

#16 HeyJP

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 11:39 AM

One point to note, the area (light gathering ability) of a mirror is proportional to the SQUARE of the radius. So a 4 inch wide camera body (or the 4 inch circular mask you would use) covers half the diameter but only 25% of the area. The secondary blocks 10%.

Jim in Boulder

#17 Starhawk

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 07:50 PM

OK, so a 2.5"X4" camera is 19.9% of the area of the C8, so the brightness to the detector is still equivalent to an unobstructed f/2.3 system in brightness, but it still has 8" resolution.

The brightness factor is 183 versus 227 for an unobstructed f/2.1, or 214 for a: camera 2" in diameter. This needs to be compared to the brighness coefficient of 34 for an f/5.4 NP-101, 25 for an f/6.25 unobstructed telescope, or 10 for an f/10 SCT.

-Rich

#18 HeyJP

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 07:18 AM

Good point , Rich. Easy to get caught up in % obstruction and forget that we're talking f/2 and not f/10... Which is 25x brighter for any light that gets through. :-)

Jim

#19 cdgla

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 01:06 PM

Starizona does make the camera adapter for the Sony Nex 5. I have used the Sony with my CPC1100 and Hyperstar 3 with Canon adapter, and I have a 9.25 HD fitted with Starizona's Sony adapter. I have had excellent results with both scopes.

#20 Geo.

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 05:17 PM

I have been playing with a $100 Olympus E-PL1. It has a lot of menu features that make it usable in AP. I hadn't thought of Fastar. There's a lot of adapters available. I have a 2" insertion barrel adapter from CNC Parts Supply, which keeps the back focus short. The common t-adapter maintains the 55mm back focus so that's no help.






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