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MvZ
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Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18
      #5530883 - 11/20/12 07:28 PM Attachment (391 downloads)

Imaged with the ASI120MM CMOS camera. It is just a single (but good) RGB out of a whole bunch, so I'm definately not done processing yet.

I'm testing out the ASI120MM camera, and so far I like it. I did find what looks like some scattered light problems, showing a slight gradient in the images, but I'm sure that can be easily fixed and is probably not a camera issue. Other than that I really like the camera, most importantly because there are no artifacts as the Basler Ace had (and you sometimes still see in Flea3 images as well). I can stretch the **** out of my blue images, and they still look ok.

The camera also performs quite nicely on deepsky targets: http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/5529420/page... , and appears to be very sensitive. I have done some comparison recordings (also together with Bart Declercq) with the Basler Ace aca640, but I find it difficult to say anything meaningful about that - and to be honest I haven't really thought about the best way to compare the images. The ASI120MM has much smaller pixels, and with my own telescope there was no way to get a comparable image scale. Also the transparancy was a bit variable, making the image sometimes appear 50% more bright or dim than 5 minutes ago.

I do have the impression that the signal/noise ratio seems very good, pretty much on par with the icx618 basler ace. But the highest QE is shifted a bit towards green light.

Anyways, it is a very fun camera to play around with, and I think this just became my primary planetary camera for anything but Venus (because the Basler Ace can do 200FPS when I crop, and the ASI120MM is a bit slower).

All channels were imaged at 1/50s and 50fps, recorded at 640x480 (center crop from the 1280x960 full resolution)

Cheers,

Emil

Edited by MvZ (11/20/12 07:54 PM)


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5530888 - 11/20/12 07:31 PM

I also made a huge animation of Jupiter in blue light (!). The seeing was rather good. I hope to make some more animations in the following days.

Be careful, the animation is over 4 MB in size. It consists of 27 stacks taken in little under 2.5 hours time:

http://www.astrokraai.nl/dump/20121118-19_Jupiter_Animatie_blauwst.gif


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ToxMan
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5530902 - 11/20/12 07:39 PM

I like the results, Emil. Where can someone purchase one of these? Their web-site didn't have info to purchase or pricing. Can one camera do it all?

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Kokatha man
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5531041 - 11/20/12 09:04 PM

.....as I said in my email Emil "Beautiful Jupiter!"

I just wish I had the elevation and seeing to do justice to the planet in the trials I've done so far.....but with my new fitting I live in hope for when I return to the Northern Territory next week..!

But as your image (and Glenn's etc with the Flea3 also among others) demonstrates, a nice night with Jupiter high in the sky is well nigh unbeatable!

And the core image of the "Trap" in M42 is also imprsssive - enough to make me want to shoot that also in the near future with the ASI120MM.....

Paul - Sam has indicated to me a very competive price for those wishing to purchase this camera we're testing atm.....something like 1/2 the price of the TIS cameras with the 618 chip - so I think that makes it a real "player" in the imaging stakes!!!

Emailing Sam at his web address should answer any queries you or others have.....


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ToxMan
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5531060 - 11/20/12 09:16 PM

Quote:

Paul - Sam has indicated to me a very competive price for those wishing to purchase this camera we're testing atm.....something like 1/2 the price of the TIS cameras with the 618 chip - so I think that makes it a real "player" in the imaging stakes!!!




Thanks, Darryl. I think you are right...and I happen to be looking for new camera.


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Mitchell Duke
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: ToxMan]
      #5531073 - 11/20/12 09:26 PM

Very crisp shot

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Rankinstudio
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Mitchell Duke]
      #5531208 - 11/20/12 10:37 PM

That is amazing.

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Kecktastic
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5531225 - 11/20/12 10:41 PM

A beautiful image in its own right Emil, regardless of what camera was used, certainly the best I have seen from a CMOS camera.

Regards
Trevor


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kecktastic]
      #5531290 - 11/20/12 11:17 PM

The era of cmos is coming sooner than we thought! Very nice Emil!

Glenn


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5531508 - 11/21/12 04:30 AM

That is great! I have a 10" Meade Starfinder......OTA. Wish I had that clunky old mount.

Regards,
Brad


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5531554 - 11/21/12 06:00 AM

Thanks.

I will make a slightly better RGB version, one where I combined data using winjupos. This was just a single sequence.

Brad, I would rather use a a more modern mount to be honest. 50-60 arcseconds periodic error is not nice, I can't leave the computer capturing for one minute, as it will have appeared that Jupiter moved significantly either west or east in the meantime.


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cheapersleeper
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5531559 - 11/21/12 06:10 AM

I realized that mount is not great but I have seen many nice exaples of planetary imaging done with that setup. I don't recall the site but someone with lovely images was talking about the large periodic error. Is the error great enough to move Jupiter off the chip in a short time?

B


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5531607 - 11/21/12 07:20 AM

Yes, it is Luckily I have the Magellan II controller, and always right next to my laptop, so I continuously steer Jupiter back in the FOV.

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cheapersleeper
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5531740 - 11/21/12 09:05 AM

Quote:

Yes, it is Luckily I have the Magellan II controller, and always right next to my laptop, so I continuously steer Jupiter back in the FOV.




Wow. I had no idea. My eq platform that I built (Mark 1), let me do five one minute captures in a row sometimes at 3000mm fl. I started trying to debug and improve it, and it stopped working. Going to start on Mark 2 platform this week. I am fairly confident that I can get it to track well enough to be able to go up to 3500mm fl. Fingers are crossed.

B


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5531769 - 11/21/12 09:27 AM

Emil, awesome image! I love the incoming angle view of the red spots. Excellent work and thanks for posting

Regards,
Steve


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5531785 - 11/21/12 09:34 AM

I was imaging at 6.5 meters, or something like that.

But that means absolutely nothing if you don't know the pixel size of the camera. I'm always confused when people talk about focal lengths as if that alone means anything. It does not. 3 meters with 7.5 um pixels is exactly the same as 1.5 meters with 3.75 um pixels. You hear this focal length talk a lot in deepsky forums, and that is fine if everyone is using the exact same pixel sized cameras, but that is usually not the case.

Ok, enough of the small rant on FL, didn't mean to offend you, I just felt like saying this

The 6.6 meters corresponds to about 10 meters for a 'typical' 5.6 um planetary camera (Flea 3, DMK21, etc).

I'm very much interested in how you make your eq platforms (and how expensive it would be to make one). Do you plan to implement corrective steering on both axis? Or just one, or none and will it simply track at one speed without the possibility to correct the speed a little bit?


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5532468 - 11/21/12 03:17 PM

Lovely image, Emil! I´m curious about the WinJupos colour version!


Regards
Torsten


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Jason H.
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5532799 - 11/21/12 06:45 PM

Very nice! I have a garage full of much older Meades (including a 10"), I wish they performed nearly as nicely! Seems those newer scopes are optically vastly improved?

Jason W. Higley


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Jason H.]
      #5533503 - 11/22/12 08:15 AM

Stunning shots Emil. I have just had first light in terrible conditions on my ASI120MC and I'm also extremely happy with the results (although nowhere near as good as yours!).

I was going to ask Sam if there was a Yahoo group / Mailing list for users of his camera's, but maybe you know of one?


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Bill Friend
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: StuW]
      #5533537 - 11/22/12 08:43 AM

Amazing shots Emil!!

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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: StuW]
      #5533554 - 11/22/12 09:00 AM

Me too Torsten, it will have to wait a bit though, but the recordings should not run away (I just got 6 TB of extra hard disk space to store my recordings, so I didn't have to delete any previous recordings )

Jason, from what I know there is a lot of variability with these meade starfinde scopes. I bought mine second hand in 2007, but I believe it was made in the late 90's. I guess I got lucky with this one, as the optics are pretty good indeed.

I don't know about a yahoo group or mailing list, might be best to ask Sam about that.


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5534687 - 11/23/12 12:48 AM

Great shot Emil!! Glad to see the ol' 10" getting some use again! You sure know how to make that scope perform well.

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Space Cowboy
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Hillbrad]
      #5535087 - 11/23/12 09:17 AM

Super images! This cam certainly looks the business!

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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Space Cowboy]
      #5536712 - 11/24/12 07:24 AM

Nice shoot!
can't wait to see the final image


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: wenjha]
      #5536876 - 11/24/12 09:25 AM Attachment (55 downloads)

Here is a final image. Spent a lot of time processing this, it does show some more details, especially near the poles, but it also a little bit 'fatter' than the previous image.

Notice the small cyclonic dark spot division next to oval BA.

Edited by MvZ (11/24/12 09:25 AM)


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5537090 - 11/24/12 11:31 AM

Congratulations on another superb image Emil!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Kokatha man
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5537610 - 11/24/12 05:56 PM

Quote:

Notice the small cyclonic dark spot division next to oval BA.




That "spot" has indeed come out wonderfully Emil with it's curvilinear outline - I don't think I've seen that in any other images so far!

In general though I prefer the earlier image posted, it has an aesthetic for me that is both "delicate" and detailed...but that's just an example of personal opinion - maybe influenced by the fact that I've just found out I'm diabetic and I've had to start a controlled diet just before Christmas - and "leaner" is now the order of the day for me!!!


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5537618 - 11/24/12 06:06 PM Attachment (55 downloads)

Perhaps the attached image is a bit more delicate then.

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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5537780 - 11/24/12 08:13 PM

A great reprocess Emil! Yes the dark spot showed an indentation at first (I see it in my images back in September) but seems to be almost divided now. Very nice catch!

Glenn


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5538160 - 11/25/12 01:29 AM

Wonderful results here, Emil -- incredible detail. Would you mind sharing what you did to process?

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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: GreatGigInTheSky]
      #5538344 - 11/25/12 07:48 AM

Just a little bit Jeff, but only because it took me hours of experimentation and I forgot the most of what I tried. But it briefly comes down to:

<edit: at this point I thought this was going to be just a small post... >

First figure out the best recordings in the bunch. I stacked them all in AS!2, and carefuly selected the best blue recordings that were close in time to eachother (coarse sharpening, and just a lot of close-up staring). I was left with a small list of five recordings that really stood out. For green and red I also searched for the best recordings around these best blue times. In the end I was left with two sets of RGB recordings captured within 12 minutes of eachotheer.

Processed these two sets in AS!2 but I put some more effort into getting high quality results. In the end I ended up with gradient 4 and about 30 APs placed over the planet (some more smaller ones just around the GRS over structures that stood out a bit). I used drizzle 3x basically to just enlarge the image a bit, it didn't really bring out more details (but perhaps did help just a tiny tiny tiny bit in alignment quality).

Then these stacks were brought to photoshop, and I processed them using a macro I wrote specifically for these recordings. It comes down to 1) finer smart sharpening using more accurate 2) small gaussian blur 3) coarser smart sharpening using more accurate 4) another smart sharpening stage. The result was actually still quite subtle, but most of the finer details could be more easily seen.

I resized them to 50% (so now we are working at 150% of the original size) and loaded them in winjupos to do image derotation. This took a lot of effort, it was very difficult getting the channels to line up perfectly. I ended up with a couple of images that contained the six derotated rgb stacks . These were openened in Photoshop again, were I combined them according to the specific noise levels in the two R's, G's, and B's.

Then I adjusted the color balance, but made sure there was some headroom for further sharpening (you don't want to clip the images of course). I kept this color balance proto-stack, and played around with this for a couple more hours to get to the images you just saw . This included some layering to get rid of some slight edge color problems, several fine sharpening steps again with smart sharpening, and finally a little bit of noise reduction.

To be honest, I don't really remember all the steps I did, I just had a lot of fun playing around and carefuly observing the effect of each step. If it didn't seem to work out, I went a few steps back and tried again with different settings. For me processing is never just a fixed routine (although certain elements are fixed). I always try to get the most out of each particular image. Especially now I imaged with a different camera with a different image scale, it was important to be flexible with processing. This was of course not the most time efficient way of processing, but in the end I did learn some new tricks.

Then there is also a matter of taste of course. Some find the images to soft or too harsh. I just try to get an image that I'm pleased with. Sometimes it is a bit more on the soft side, but now I was rather focused on trying to get that cyclonic dark spot division . This meant I pushed the image overall a little bit further than I perhaps normally would have done.

Edited by MvZ (11/25/12 07:49 AM)


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GreatGigInTheSky
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5538832 - 11/25/12 02:21 PM

Emil,
Thanks very much for taking the time to write all that down. This does give me some ideas to try. At some point, I'll probably go the monochrome camera route and the whole Winjupos thing, but for now, it's color data I'm working with.

Thanks again, and congratulations on the marvelous results.


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edsplace
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5549424 - 12/01/12 09:25 PM

I just purchased one of these cameras, and am very excited. I also sold my DMK21. I then did some more research on the Aptina AR0130CS/MT9M034 Cmos chip and find great looking numbers, but then I read ROLLING SHUTTER! I am freaking out a bit that I sold my global shutter CCD for a rolling shutter CMOS camera. The planet moves on screen when I am using my 16" dob, even moves a lot more when I am using my CPC1100. Did you find any problems in capture or stacking with the rolling shutter?

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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: edsplace]
      #5549609 - 12/01/12 11:54 PM

Hi edsplace
I don't think rolling shutter cares much.
because if the planet moves very fast on screen then if must because of wind or bad seeing.it is not because of the rolling shutter itself.


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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5549612 - 12/01/12 11:55 PM

Very nice final image!I would like to add it to my gallery if you don't mind Emil

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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: edsplace]
      #5549684 - 12/02/12 12:49 AM

Quote:

I just purchased one of these cameras, and am very excited. I also sold my DMK21. I then did some more research on the Aptina AR0130CS/MT9M034 Cmos chip and find great looking numbers, but then I read ROLLING SHUTTER! I am freaking out a bit that I sold my global shutter CCD for a rolling shutter CMOS camera. The planet moves on screen when I am using my 16" dob, even moves a lot more when I am using my CPC1100. Did you find any problems in capture or stacking with the rolling shutter?




Forget the "techno-babble" about rolling shutter image-smearing as opposed to global shutter capabilities with planetary imaging Ed - someone using another cmos camera with a rolling shutter reported no issues whatsoever in their imaging.....but let me tell you brother, I'm the laziest dog-gone mount setup imager you'll come across in a month of Sundays mate!!! - I use a Wixey to get a rough altitude, an old compass for azimuth and I'm off and running imaging.....I make corrections every second or 2 at least and the other night the wind was so bad the image made a pinbal look slow and more geriatric than me! I have never had an ounce of trouble with "smearing" and the ASI120MM!

My mantra - "good PA is for sissies!"

Edited by Kokatha man (12/02/12 12:52 AM)


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edsplace
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5550993 - 12/02/12 08:31 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I just purchased one of these cameras, and am very excited. I also sold my DMK21. I then did some more research on the Aptina AR0130CS/MT9M034 Cmos chip and find great looking numbers, but then I read ROLLING SHUTTER! I am freaking out a bit that I sold my global shutter CCD for a rolling shutter CMOS camera. The planet moves on screen when I am using my 16" dob, even moves a lot more when I am using my CPC1100. Did you find any problems in capture or stacking with the rolling shutter?




Forget the "techno-babble" about rolling shutter image-smearing as opposed to global shutter capabilities with planetary imaging Ed - someone using another cmos camera with a rolling shutter reported no issues whatsoever in their imaging.....but let me tell you brother, I'm the laziest dog-gone mount setup imager you'll come across in a month of Sundays mate!!! - I use a Wixey to get a rough altitude, an old compass for azimuth and I'm off and running imaging.....I make corrections every second or 2 at least and the other night the wind was so bad the image made a pinbal look slow and more geriatric than me! I have never had an ounce of trouble with "smearing" and the ASI120MM!

My mantra - "good PA is for sissies!"




Will I'm using dobs and alt/az mounts PA Goes back to my dark skies living..., I loved deep space imaging.

I hate to hijack this thread... but the rolling shutting is not from others taking about it. I have made two CMOS cameras with rolling shutter, one was based off a microscope camera (the same one the LPI was based off of) and the other was made from a chip/board set that FCcam produced (this was the same as the SAC4.2 and Orion's second generation planetary camera) the microscope based one didn't have much problem with the rolling shutter, it did have some crazy artifacts when you moved the planet around to much. The second one I made was horrible, if you moved much during capture the file would end up unstackable... It was very finicky. So my "What did I do! " moment Is not from people's technobabble, but my own experience. I had made a mental note to not use progressive scan sensors any longer. The images I have seen from this camera do not look like they came from a progressive scan camera, and that is why I didn't do much research beyond the companies web page before purchasing. I was surprised to see the quality of image from a CMOS and from some crazy reason thought that they had figured out a way to use this technology with soe sort of global shutter, but I thought about it more that makes no sense Deep in my heart I knew they had to have a rolling shutter. Anyway I am still excited and my camera should be here tomorrow. Glad the effects of a rolling shutter have been seen using this camera on planets.


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Kokatha man
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: edsplace]
      #5551087 - 12/02/12 09:21 PM

.....there was a bit of "tongue in cheek" about my post Ed, although I was deadly serious about the degree of movement I nearly allways have of the planet onscreen: the salient point is that if you look a Emil's image or my lastest threads you will have to agree that the camera delivers the goods!

I think you will enjoy your new camera and in my latest thread I've given a rough guide to one set of values you might like to experiment with using the ASI120MM...


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MvZ
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5551615 - 12/03/12 07:46 AM

I did not experience any problems during two nights playing around with the camera. The first night there was quite a bit of wind, and Jupiter was bouncing up and down the screen a lot - it bounced off occasionaly - but I had no trouble stacking the final image and I did not see any artifacts.

I guess that the speed of the rolling shutter matters a lot (?). A relatively slow rolling shutter should introduce weird artifacts, but if it is fast enough (like it seems to be with this particular camera), it doesn't really matter.

I think you will be pleased with the camera and find that there is no problem with the rolling shutter.

Sure Sam, you can use it as long as you add my name.


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Kokatha man
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5551734 - 12/03/12 09:41 AM

Quote:

I did not experience any problems during two nights playing around with the camera. The first night there was quite a bit of wind, and Jupiter was bouncing up and down the screen a lot - it bounced off occasionaly - but I had no trouble stacking the final image and I did not see any artifacts.

I guess that the speed of the rolling shutter matters a lot (?). A relatively slow rolling shutter should introduce weird artifacts, but if it is fast enough (like it seems to be with this particular camera), it doesn't really matter.

I think you will be pleased with the camera and find that there is no problem with the rolling shutter.

Sure Sam, you can use it as long as you add my name.




.....just a plug for AS!2 here Emil along the same lines as you've stated above - a few times I've stacked images where the planet has quite regularly gone awol on the screen during capture due to winds - and AS!2 just seems to laugh it off..!


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lcd1080
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Reged: 06/03/10

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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5552696 - 12/03/12 07:50 PM

Oh my gosh Emil after seeing the high quality of your images it's time to start thinking about a CMOS camera, maybe in time for the coming Saturn season!

Pete


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wenjha
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Re: Jupiter with the 10" Meade Starfinder - Nov 18 new [Re: MvZ]
      #5553252 - 12/04/12 02:15 AM

Thanks Emil
of course I will add your name


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