Last night I got a chance to broadcast and compare both the $99 DSO-1 and the $99 Micro-EX. Both of these cameras are based on the same LN300 box camera. The testing was done on my CPC11 using a standard Celestron 0.63x reducer. Conditions were average with high humidity but fortunately no moon, there were some scattered clouds, but overall once my desktop computer decided to cooperate things got off to a good start. FIrst here are the links to the relevant cameras:
I am much more familiar with the MICRO having had this camera since it first came out over 9 months ago. I just acquired the DSO-1 so my experience with that camera was less. In any regard I used computer control with both cameras. On the Micro I purchased a $49 cable that connects to an RS485 dongle and then to a standard serial connector, which I then use a USB-to-Serial dongle. The DSO-1 came with a more direct USB connection which allows me to not have to deal with a serial dongle. Both the AVS and the Mallincam cameras also come as complete kits with video wires, power adapter and nose piece for $199 and $169 - however the AVS camera kit also includes the USB computer control cable which the Micro retails for $40-60 more depending on serial or usb variety. Hence, apples to apples the complete DSO is $199 while the Micro-EX is closer to $229.
Of course if you already have a power adapter or video cable and nose piece, you just need the camera body for $99 from either merchant. And you can buy the power adapter and video cables on Amazon for like $10 each in any regard...
OK... onto the tests....
So what makes these little cameras so great is that they have onboard stacking and noise reduction which does just excellent job on image enhancement. Both cameras are x1024 which means they go up to 17 seconds of exposure and both have maximum DNR 5 stacking which means 5x17s or about 85s of equivalent exposure integration. The biggest difference among these two cameras that I noticed was that the DSO can use DNR stacking and display the results in color while the MICRO cannot. So lets check it out.
DSO - NGC 7331 x256 AGC High and DNR 5
MICRO -- NGC 7331 x256 AGC high and DNR 5
Of course the MICRO can do color, if we do not use stacking and DNR...
MICRO -- M57 --NO DNR - just x1024 or 17s
DSO - M57 3x Zoom with DNR5