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What camera to use with C6 w/1.25" diagonal?

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#1 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 04:16 PM

Greetings all, I'm about to purchase a C6 SCT which comes with a 1.25" diagonal. It's focal ratio is f/10 but for AP I intend to use a Mallincam focal reducer MR5 which brings it down to either F/5 or F/3. Now I've come across a few cameras which seem to be on the forefront for AP. They are:

1. Canon 60Da (reduced IR filter)

2. Olympus E-MP2 (seems like a cost effective camera)

3. Canon EOS t2i (seems to be a standard)

4. Canon 1100D (modified)

5. Panasonic GH3 (great semi-real time exposures)

6. Canon 650D (modified)

I know there are various sized chips in each of these. My question to the forum is, what would you recommend and why?

It would be great to find an all purpose camera that I can use for AP as well as other things, as I wouldn't mind revisiting HD film production work I've done in the past. If I went out and invested in a modified camera, I probably wouldn't be able to use it for anything else.

I should mention I will also be getting a Stellarview 60mm straight through finderscope with a 2" focuser... could I conceivably produce better results with it over the C6?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thank you.

#2 Footbag

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 04:45 PM

Whichever DSLR you use, you will be eliminating a diagonal. A T-ring and T-adapter will attach to the SCT. And you will probably want a Celestron FR. This will help you hit the proper spacing.

I'd go with the modified 650D(T4i). I don't think the T5i is fully supported by all of the astro programs, but it will be soon. Of course, it's new and untested, but should also be a good performer.

Now, if you want a camera for daytime HD stuff, buy that. Then buy a used modded XSi or T1i for under $500. Keep your eyes in the S&S and classifieds. I like leaving my DSLR on my OTA. So having two cameras lets me have one where I need it when I need it. I tend to buy used, which covers the difference. With a mod, you are killing the warranty anyways.

It is true you can use a modded camera for daytime photo's, but you do have to take a CWB in each type of lighting you are in. Personally, I think this makes your photo's look better, but it is a bit more of a chore.

I like APS-C sensors because they are large. You can always crop, but if your target doesn't fit in the FOV there is nothing you can do.

Modified cameras also work better on larger targets. Or maybe I should say H-Alpha targets tend to be larger. I'm not sure about the SV60mm. I have no experience with it. But a small apo refractor will most certainly give a newcomer better results then a long FL SCT.

Also, a similar sized CCD sensor would be over $5K.

#3 DaemonGPF

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 04:46 PM

You're going to get vignetting with the DSLRs I believe.

These would do much better on the Stellarview.

For the C6 I'd go with something like an ATIK 314L+ or comparable sized.

#4 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 05:08 PM

Maybe I should just get a less expensive CCD or CMOS camera dedicated for AP (60mm Stellarview and C6) and get a DSLR for pictures and film like a Mark III later on...

Adam, I would use focal reducers on the C6.

#5 mclewis1

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 05:37 PM

If you are going to use the C6 on a gem style mount (as you previously said you'd like to do) why would you consider using the 1.25" diagonal? Since with this type of setup you don't care much about clearance behind the scope you won't care about right angle stuff. Plus the Celestron 1.25" diagonal included with the scope is not a very robust piece of hardware. Cameras and such that are comparatively heavy compared to 1.25" eyepieces will often cause the diagonal to sag a bit (it's body is made of plastic).

Usually with a gem style mount you will mount any cameras and such directly off the back of the ota. You'll also need to be very careful about the spacing when you are using focal reducers so the adapters and spacers will be unique for each type of reducer/camera combination.

On the other hand if you are going to buy the complete 6SE alt az mounted scope then you will need to consider the clearance with the base when the scope is pointed towards the zenith. In this case I would regardless of what camera you choose get a 2" SCT threaded diagonal. These are much more solid and robust. Then you'll mount your focal reducer, any spacers required and then your camera.

#6 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 05:40 PM

The Atik 314L looks very good but it's a bit expensive. Trying to find one with the same or comparable chip for $1000 or less.

#7 rflinn68

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 05:51 PM

DSLR will work just fine. Just take proper flats. I really like my Canon T3 (1100D). I had tons of fun with it as it came from Canon and eventually had it modified by Gary Honis.

As Adam said though, use a T-adapter and dont use the diagonal.

#8 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 06:56 PM

Cool, how well does it perform modified? And if I may, how does it compare with the 60Da?

#9 kbev

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 08:16 PM

I regularly use an 1100D on my C6 and AT72ED. The C6 has a large enough light cone at prime focus that vignetting isn't bad and with the AT72ED there is more than enough to cover the field. My main concern with the Stellarvue would be some false color from the achromat design, plus you'll get some field curvature with the f/3.75 focal ratio. But any of the Canon APS-C cameras would be a good choice, I can't comment on the others as I have no experience with them.

#10 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 08:27 PM

Wait a sec, the AT72ED is pretty decently priced and it's APO. I should go for that instead of the SV60 as a finder!

#11 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 08:39 PM

Here's something else that can be a viable alternative...

http://www.opticspla...pe-ae11118.html

#12 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 08:40 PM

wait, no, that thing is 14 lbs...

#13 FishInPercolator

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 09:19 PM

Hey Mark, yeah I didn't know what I was thinking. Actually, I didn't know what the appropriate term is for the opening in the back of the OTA. Yes I wouldn't put it on the diagonal. Thanks for pointing it out.

#14 rflinn68

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 11:53 PM

Cool, how well does it perform modified? And if I may, how does it compare with the 60Da?


A fully modded camera will show more H-alpha than the 60Da. Also, it takes me about 5 seconds to change my T3 from Auto White Balance to Custom White Balance to take regular daytime pictures.

This is a good review. It sums it up pretty well at the bottom with the "conclusion"

http://www.cloudynig...hp?item_id=2805

#15 rflinn68

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 11:56 PM

Wait a sec, the AT72ED is pretty decently priced and it's APO. I should go for that instead of the SV60 as a finder!


A better choice IMO is the AT65EDQ. It is a true apo with FPL-53 optics and a built-in field flattener. You will need a flattener with the 72ED and the AT65 comes with some pretty nice rings. By the time you buy the rings and flattener you'll have almost as much in it as you would the AT65EDQ with premium optics.

#16 FishInPercolator

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:46 AM

Okay... is it on sale anywhere?

#17 kbev

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:21 PM

If you're wanting true APO performance then the AT65 would be a better bet, or the AT60EDT - the AT72 is an ED doublet so there is a bit of color around bright stars but it's manageable; with a triplet you get much better color correction.

#18 FishInPercolator

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 09:13 AM

May I ask you all how you would compare AP on a 60mm APO to the C6 or the AT6RC?






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