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Equipment Discussions >> Electronically Assisted Astronomy

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Doug Culbertson
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Reged: 01/06/05

Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No?
      #5624731 - 01/15/13 04:13 PM

OK, I am about to fall off of the fence that I have been sitting on regarding the Mallincam Xtreme, though I am also considering looking for a used Collins I3 instead of the Mallincam.

In looking at the various packages I see that there is an available wireless exposure control. Does anyone see this as a necessary item? I would love to hear opinions, but please let me know why or why not.

Oh, and I am also slightly technologically challenged, so the Mallincam is already going to have a pretty big learning curve for me without additional complications. It would be nice to hear if the wireless controller makes things easier or harder to learn.

I don't know if it matters, but I would be using the Mallincam in a 14.5" f/4.3 Starmaster with a MFR 3 with 10mm extension, as well as in my EON 120, though not as often as the Starmaster. I would probably be using my laptop or a 9" LCD monitor. Wish I could use the Speco that everyone raves about, but my observing shed is too far from the house to access AC.


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mclewis1
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5624805 - 01/15/13 05:01 PM

Doug,

The first consideration is your laptop, if it's always around the scope then of course you have the option of PC control, if not then the wired/wireless remote combo will be required. Note the wired/wireless comment, to use the Xtreme remotely (to do anything beyond 3 second exposures) without a PC you need BOTH the wired hand controller and the wireless exposure controller on the camera at the same time.

Any minor installation issues aside I've found the PC control to be more "straightforward" to understand and use compared to the menu system built into the cameras. You will still need to understand some of the background of the menu system to get the most out of the camera but I find when all the PC control stuff is in front of me that I do a better job of controlling the camera.

If you go the manual remote control route you'll really need to sit down and understand the menu system on the camera. I found that the material written for the MCHP camera made the most sense, and then I brushed up on the differences with the Xtreme (longer exposure, flexible cooling, CCD mode, etc.). Virtually all the material written for the Xtreme is oriented towards a PC controlled setup.

Once you've achieved some reasonable comfort using the camera that way you'll still likely find that you don't want to be "jumping around" between dsos and solar system objects too much. It's much easier to keep the camera in it's extremely sensitive modes of operation and only work with the exposures and such. You will also find that you'll need to tweak the contrast/brightness and perhaps a few other video controls on your monitor or PC.

There is of course a ton of info on the Yahoo Mallincam group as well as on Jack Heuercamp's website. Another great source of knowledge is on NightSkiesNetwork.com, there's nothing like watching a live broadcast and interacting with the guy controlling the Mallincam to understand what's going on.


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wolfman_4_ever
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 07/15/11

Loc: El Segundo, Ca, So. Cal
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5624863 - 01/15/13 05:41 PM

You don't need the wired hand controller if you don't have a PC... it's the same as the buttons on the back of the camera...

It's good if you don't want camera shake by touching the rear of the camera.. Or if walking the 20+ feet might cause the universe to spontaneously combust around you.


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Doug Culbertson
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: wolfman_4_ever]
      #5624956 - 01/15/13 06:45 PM

Mark, thanks for the very detailed response! Also, thanks to Dave for clarifying the buttons on the camera vs the wired remote, as I was going to ask about that.

Looking again at Jack's site, and reading one of the reviews that he links to, it looks as though using my laptop would be the preferred method for using the Mallincam Xtreme. Not to mention that going without the wireless/wired controllers saves more than a few dollars!

As to software, is the free download MC software decent enough, or would I be better going with one of the third party drivers that have been mentioned on this forum?

Here's what I am now looking at, but I am open to suggestions for any additional items:

MC Xtreme w/o wireless or wired controllers
MFR 3 with 10mm extension
a frame grabber device, either the one offered by Mallincam or one of the cheaper models on Amazon

Anything else? I was also wondering about filters, such as an IR or Ha filter?

Sorry for all the questions, but I sure appreciate any and all replies.


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mclewis1
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Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5625176 - 01/15/13 08:50 PM

Doug,

There are a number of great Mallincam Xtreme control software apps. A few of them are also minimal pay for type as well. I'd start of with one of the free ones and then see if you want/need some of the features in the other ones. The "standard" one is listed as Mallincam Control Software version 2.8 (or "Stephan's" software).

Some of the apps are control only and some include the video presentation portion as well. If you choose a control only app there are plenty of great video presentation apps as options as well. Under Windows AMCAP is the most basic but something like SharpCap is my favourite (in terms of capabilities and ease of use). Many of the regular imaging apps (such as Nebulosity) also have the capability of displaying a webcam video feed (which is what most of the USB video frame grabbers look like to a PC). Because of the USB frame grabber sitting in between the PC and the Mallincam on the video side you usually won't find a camera entry for a "Mallincam" in most software products.

When you are looking at connectivity of the whole setup I find it helps to remember that these are two completely separation concepts (control vs. video) and they are not interrelated in anyway other than both originating at the camera.


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mclewis1
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Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5625202 - 01/15/13 09:08 PM

Doug,

As for other stuff like filters and such ...

I'm not sure an IR cut filter will do much with your big reflector. Perhaps something general to cut mild light pollution and sky glow - a Lumincon DeepSky, or one of the LP specific models (Astronomik CLS-CCD, Orion SkyGlow Imaging, Hutech IDAS LP v2 etc.). Beyond that it depends on your conditions and what you are viewing. Astronomik UHC for bad LP, a fairly narrow Ha, and an OIII would cover most situations and objects.


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5625647 - 01/16/13 05:00 AM

Doug,

Stick with the laptop. It makes things a lot easier.

JohnD


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Doug Culbertson
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: johnpd]
      #5625841 - 01/16/13 09:24 AM

Thanks again for the great advice, all of you have made my decision much easier.

So, laptop control it is, and I will check out the free control software first as well as a decent LP filter. I already have an Orion Ultrablock and OIII filters but those are both visual rather than imaging filters. I am in a borderline yellow/green zone, and on a good transparent night, my NELM is typically in the 6.0 range, though light pollution is gaining steam thanks to "progress".

Edited by Doug Culbertson (01/16/13 09:25 AM)


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James Cunningham
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Reged: 08/07/10

Loc: Maryland
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5625860 - 01/16/13 09:33 AM

I had both the Mallincam Xtreme and a night vision eyepiece. By far, I preferred the Mallincam. I sold my night vision eyepiece. I also agree that going the laptop route is easiest and you can use some software like Astroplanner to make observation lists and use the software to slew to where you want to go. The software that comes with the Mallincam is good but the Miloslick software is even better because of it's enhancements including built in stacking.

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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: James Cunningham]
      #5625979 - 01/16/13 10:50 AM

Thanks Jimmy! I have been looking at the Miloslick site and it looks good. I will most likely start with the free MC software until I figure things out, then start thinking about Miloslick.

FWIW, a few years ago I was observing with someone who had both the MC and an I3, and he also preferred the MC. At the time I preferred the I3, because it was more like the observing that I was used to. OTOH, I found the color views of objects to be more visually pleasing. Another consideration for me is that I have a communications tower across the road from me. The red housing at the top of that tower has faded to the point of being almost clear, so it puts out a flash that is more white than red, and I fear what may happen should the telescope slew past that light, thus giving the I3 a dose of strong white light. FWIW, I've been after the local Sheriff to fix that light for 4 years, but without success.


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5626396 - 01/16/13 03:29 PM

call the FAA on the light, should be flight saftey and they should get on it ASAP

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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5626480 - 01/16/13 04:07 PM

I did file a complaint with the FCC last week, but didn't think to file with the FAA as well. I also filed a complaint with the FCC two years ago, but nothing was done about the light. The Sheriff's Department actually owns the tower but they don't seem to care about its condition.

Edited by Doug Culbertson (01/16/13 04:15 PM)


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Jack Huerkamp
Vendor - Waning Moon


Reged: 10/13/05

Loc: Louisiana
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5627906 - 01/17/13 11:39 AM

By law, the flashing light at night is supposed to be red with a white light backup if the red light goes out. I have a cell tower a mile or so from the house and occasionally the red light fails and I call the cell company (they have the contact info and tower # posted on the fence surrounding the facility) and within a short time period the red light is restored.

Jack H


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Jack Huerkamp]
      #5628047 - 01/17/13 12:53 PM

Jack,

This one is a single light tower, so it is painted orange/white with red markers and a red obstruction light on top. It's the housing for that top obstruction light that is faded to white, and the one that I have tried repeatedly to get the Sheriff's office to repair. I've even offered to pay the $250 for a new top light, but have never received a response.


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5628069 - 01/17/13 01:09 PM

Ok, I just sent my deposit for the Mallincam Xtreme. Thanks to everyone for your help and ideas! I really look forward to this new learning curve, and I am sure that I will have plenty more questions in the future.

Jack, it was great chatting with you today!


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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5628825 - 01/17/13 08:27 PM

Just for the record (since it seems all is settled after your talk with Jack), the wired hand controller is not that hard to use. In fact, it gives you a much more "tactile" sense of what's going on with your camera. I also have no difficulty switching back and forth between deep sky and solar system objects. It does take a few sessions to go up the learning curve, but that's what a hobby is all about, isn't it?

As for the wireless timer, the Mallincam Extreme is limited to a 2.1 second integration without the wireless timer or computer control. I found taking a laptop computer out into the desert every night, booting it, launching apps, getting all the dongles connected, a royal pain in the ar$#. The camera is actually well designed to work stand alone with no computer. So, I decided to give up on the laptop for now. So, without a computer to control it, you definitely need the wireless timer. With it you have essentially unlimited integration times available. I also find the wired remote control essential. It is just not convenient to walk up to the telescope and use the controls on the back of the camera, especially since you really need to be watching the image on your monitor to see what the controls are doing to the image.

As for documentation, I found that it was rather confusing and helter skelter. There's alot of it, but it isn't integrated well. The most helpful document I found was a 1 page "cheat" sheet that gave you the default settings for many different types of objects. From there it is easy to jump off and experiment on your own. I have thought of doing my own documentation, based on my learning curve, but haven't been able to get around to it yet.

/Ira


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James Cunningham
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Reged: 08/07/10

Loc: Maryland
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Ira]
      #5628893 - 01/17/13 09:11 PM

I just ordered one of those cheaper ones. Where did you find the cheat sheet? Thanks.
Jim


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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: James Cunningham]
      #5628910 - 01/17/13 09:21 PM

Jim,
I found the cheat sheet in a bunch of documents I downloaded from the Mallincam web site. I'll see if I can find it on my computer and post it somewhere.

/Ira


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James Cunningham
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Loc: Maryland
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Ira]
      #5628918 - 01/17/13 09:27 PM

Thanks. you can also send me a private e-mail.
Jim


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: James Cunningham]
      #5629643 - 01/18/13 10:33 AM

Ira,

Thanks for your thoughts!

While I may buy a portable monitor, like the Watec 3.5" or similar for travel, I plan to stick with my plans to use the laptop for most of my Mallincam use.

Fortunately, I live under mag 5.7-6.0 skies (even with that bloody radio tower), and my observing shed holds my telescopes and other gear, so I very rarely travel to star parties or other darker sites. While I do have some setup time, the laptop setup will be minimal, and it can be hauled out with my eyepiece case. I really don't see how I could save much time, if any, by using a standalone monitor rather than the computer, and it can't be anymore of a hassle than hooking up the wired remote and trying to find a place on my telescope to hang it, IMO.

Since the MCX is really built with computer control in mind, I want to start out that way. Besides, I seriously doubt that I could find a standalone 12 VDC monitor that would beat my laptop's 17" HD display. I only wish that I could use the MCX with a HDMI cable.

I really do look forward to this new learning curve though!


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mclewis1
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Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5629764 - 01/18/13 11:32 AM

Doug,

With a good laptop (display wise) I would just get a good quality S-video cable (all gold ends and good shielding) and probably bite the bullet on the Mallincam USB frame grabber. Yes it's more money than most USB frame grabbers but it does (in the E version - MCV-1E) have the addition of a black level adjustment which really does make images stand out on a good LCD display. This additional capability is not available on any USB frame grabber, it usually requires another piece of gear (video processor or the obsolete Mallincam DVE).

There are S-Video to HDMI adapters/converters but they aren't cheap and don't appear to buy you anything video quality wise over the MCV-1E. With a full remote site setup (no lappy) and the desire to run with minimal power and off of a nice LCD display then maybe the HDMI converter route might make sense.

Using the supplied control cable and a suitable USB-serial adapter (and probably tape the connections together) along with a good S-Video cable and USB frame grabber you can bind them together so they can be stored and rolled out very simply. The next step up from this might be a nice combined control/video (and maybe power if that made sense as well) cable from Zeningeering (who makes the control cable).

Remember that you've always got that second video output on the Mallincam (it's always active) for a composite video connection. This makes a lot of sense for folks who want a small monitor at the scope for focusing or framing and don't want to mess with the primary video connection. You can also use thinner and more flexible video cable for this second monitor if it's going to be close to the camera.


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Doug Culbertson
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5629801 - 01/18/13 11:51 AM

Wow, excellent advice! It so happens that when I placed my order yesterday, I did actually purchase the MCV-1E USB Frame Grabber. I was going to go to a cheaper one on Amazon, but figured I would just go with a higher end grabber.

Hmmmmm, now I am back to considering a Watec 3.5", or similar, monitor to keep at the scope for focusing. Since my laptop will be out of the dew in my shed, I was kind of wondering how I would check focus without running back and forth. I didn't even think about the fact that I would have an extra connection available.

OK, having looked at the Watec 3.5" online for around $400, maybe I can find a small LCD monitor that's a bit cheaper! I wonder if something as cheap as this monitor would work well enough to achieve focus, if not for normal observing?

Edited by Doug Culbertson (01/18/13 11:52 AM)


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A. Viegas
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 03/05/12

Loc: New York City/ CT
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5630662 - 01/18/13 10:09 PM

Doug,

If you are just going to be using the small monitor at the scope for alignment, and focusing i thinkmyoumcan go,cheap. I use a 9" Portable DVD player with composite input and its totally fine. I think I paid $89 for it 6 months ago.

You are going to,have alot of fun with the mallincam. Enjoy!

Al


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5630756 - 01/18/13 10:52 PM

Quote:

Wow, excellent advice! It so happens that when I placed my order yesterday, I did actually purchase the MCV-1E USB Frame Grabber. I was going to go to a cheaper one on Amazon, but figured I would just go with a higher end grabber.

Hmmmmm, now I am back to considering a Watec 3.5", or similar, monitor to keep at the scope for focusing. Since my laptop will be out of the dew in my shed, I was kind of wondering how I would check focus without running back and forth. I didn't even think about the fact that I would have an extra connection available.

OK, having looked at the Watec 3.5" online for around $400, maybe I can find a small LCD monitor that's a bit cheaper! I wonder if something as cheap as this monitor would work well enough to achieve focus, if not for normal observing?



There's also a 7" LCD monitor with two NTSC inputs (RCA only) for under $40 .
A step above is the excellent Lilliput 7" HD , high definition, with analog and HDMI inputs for around $180 . This has way better definition than the low cost screens , higher contrast , better color reproduction and is used frequently by the pros . Also runs a couple hours on its internal rechargeable battery.


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Doug Culbertson
Post Laureate
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5630820 - 01/18/13 11:41 PM

Al, yes, the small monitor would be for alignment and focusing only, I will use my laptop for observing.

Matt, thanks! I was looking at the Lilliput. I may give that one a try later on.


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plav1959
sage
*****

Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: Central Florida
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5631214 - 01/19/13 09:41 AM Attachment (22 downloads)

Doug,
Here are a couple more options for a monitor:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/224151-REG/Marshall_V_LCD5_6_PRO_V_LCD5...
This is my main monitor used on my scope as pictured.

Another great option is this:
http://www.telescope.com/Orion-StarShoot-LCD-DVR/p/101876.uts?keyword=dvr
Great for use at the focuser and does a great job at recording also.

I have also used a 4" Marshall and a Watec, but these two are my favorites.


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Doug Culbertson
Post Laureate
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: plav1959]
      #5631229 - 01/19/13 09:58 AM

Thanks Paul! Man, that LCD/DVR at Orion looks slick. I did not know that such a device existed.

BTW, nice setup. Was that photo taken at the CAV? I haven't been there in years.

Edited by Doug Culbertson (01/19/13 10:00 AM)


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plav1959
sage
*****

Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: Central Florida
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5631235 - 01/19/13 10:03 AM

Yes it was taken at CAV. I'm up there every month.

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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: plav1959]
      #5631340 - 01/19/13 11:08 AM

You may also try the Pixel "Expert Wireless Live-view remote"

http://www.pixelhk.com/Proshow.aspx?id=111

or the Pixel "LV-122 Wired Live View Remote" .

http://www.pixelhk.com/Proshow.aspx?id=77

They are camera remote and (remote) live-view LCD in one.

Edited by mattflastro (01/19/13 09:55 PM)


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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5633166 - 01/20/13 01:02 PM

Here is a link to the one page cheat sheet for default settings of different types of objects. Very helpful not just for the beginner but for everyone.

http://www.mallincamusa.com/Updates%20-%20July%202005/Suggested%20Camera%20Se...

/Ira


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Doug Culbertson
Post Laureate
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Reged: 01/06/05

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Ira]
      #5633180 - 01/20/13 01:08 PM

Awesome! Thanks for the link.

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a__l
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/24/07

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: plav1959]
      #5634315 - 01/21/13 02:48 AM

Quote:


Another great option is this:
http://www.telescope.com/Orion-StarShoot-LCD-DVR/p/101876.uts?keyword=dvr
Great for use at the focuser and does a great job at recording also.





I read on the site Orion.
The user has the dissatisfaction about the absence adjust the brightness level.
I search the Internet. There is interesting mobile PAL/NTSC DVR

http://www.ecbub.com/byp_1872100_1ch-SD-Card-Mobile.htm
http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/64GB-SD-card-Mobile-DVR/712502_575086...


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plav1959
sage
*****

Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: Central Florida
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: a__l]
      #5641199 - 01/24/13 06:22 PM

I don't have any issue with the lack of controls on the LCD/DVR. Neither have any of the people I view with, who normally use Speco, Watec, or Marshall monitors valued at up to a $10,000 HD unit. Matter of fact, most of the people are so impressed they have or soon will purchase one of them.

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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: plav1959]
      #5641208 - 01/24/13 06:29 PM

Stop talking up this little monitor/recorder. It's already on back order!


/Ira


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Ira]
      #5641377 - 01/24/13 08:08 PM

Quote:

Stop talking up this little monitor/recorder. It's already on back order!


/Ira



do a search for "Angel Eye KS-650M" . It's a LCD DVR with similar specs and performance as the Orion but surprise surprise, sells for around $80 on ebay and other online outlets.
I got one and it records at 720x480 resolution on SD cards up to 16GB .


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wolfman_4_ever
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 07/15/11

Loc: El Segundo, Ca, So. Cal
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5641396 - 01/24/13 08:14 PM

Market it to astronomers.. triple the markup..

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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5641473 - 01/24/13 08:58 PM

Beautiful. Thanks Matt.

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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5641672 - 01/24/13 10:39 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Stop talking up this little monitor/recorder. It's already on back order!


/Ira



do a search for "Angel Eye KS-650M" . It's a LCD DVR with similar specs and performance as the Orion but surprise surprise, sells for around $80 on ebay and other online outlets.
I got one and it records at 720x480 resolution on SD cards up to 16GB .




What is the video-in connector? It seems to be some kind of mini-plug. Can you connect this to a composite video source?

/Ira


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Ira]
      #5641734 - 01/24/13 11:35 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Stop talking up this little monitor/recorder. It's already on back order!


/Ira



do a search for "Angel Eye KS-650M" . It's a LCD DVR with similar specs and performance as the Orion but surprise surprise, sells for around $80 on ebay and other online outlets.
I got one and it records at 720x480 resolution on SD cards up to 16GB .




What is the video-in connector? It seems to be some kind of mini-plug. Can you connect this to a composite video source?

/Ira




The video connectors (both in and out) are 2.5mm jacks . It comes with a composite video+stereo audio cable (2.5mm jack to 3 RCA connectors, the usual yellow white red).
Includes a battery charger , a rechargeable 3.7v phone style LiPo battery and the AV cable .
It works with SD cards up to 32GB not 16 as I had erroneously stated before .
It also includes a wireless remote (RF based not IR) to start and stop recording .


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a__l
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/24/07

Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5641908 - 01/25/13 03:30 AM

Orion monitor have a small screen (2,5").
Why two monitors on observations? In Mallincam one video output? Second (S-Video) - the old version.

My opinion. It is better to have one (good!) monitor and a separate DVR (very large capacity, such as the ability to connect USB Hard Disk - 500 GB or 1 TB).

Orion monitor has another. Power - 5 volts. Where to get 5 volts (in a dark place)? Lithium batteries? They will not last long. I have all the equipment for 12 volts and a powerful battery (one).

Ps. Term good monitor (for a dark place, my opinion)
size 7 - 8 "
signal system PAL
LED illuminated backlight
adjustable backlight levels for daytime or night-time use
works on a 12VDC
low power consumption 0.8 -1 W

Edited by a__l (01/25/13 06:18 AM)


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rmollise
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5642042 - 01/25/13 07:48 AM

Quote:


The video connectors (both in and out) are 2.5mm jacks . It comes with a composite video+stereo audio cable (2.5mm jack to 3 RCA connectors, the usual yellow white red).
Includes a battery charger , a rechargeable 3.7v phone style LiPo battery and the AV cable .
It works with SD cards up to 32GB not 16 as I had erroneously stated before .
It also includes a wireless remote (RF based not IR) to start and stop recording .




Maybe the one you're looking at. The one from Orion is definitely IR. I don't use it much anyway. What I do use all the time is the cool one button _wired_ remote. Plug it into the AV out (yes) jack, push the locking pushbutton, and the recorder turns on and starts recording. Release and it stops and turns off. Great battery/memory card saver. I've been using the Orion for the last year or so and couldn't be happier with it.

Edited by rmollise (01/25/13 07:55 AM)


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rmollise
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: a__l]
      #5642048 - 01/25/13 07:54 AM

Quote:

Orion monitor have a small screen (2,5").
Why two monitors on observations? In Mallincam one video output? Second (S-Video) - the old version.

My opinion. It is better to have one (good!) monitor and a separate DVR (very large capacity, such as the ability to connect USB Hard Disk - 500 GB or 1 TB).

Orion monitor has another. Power - 5 volts. Where to get 5 volts (in a dark place)? Lithium batteries? They will not last long. I have all the equipment for 12 volts and a powerful battery (one).

Ps. Term good monitor (for a dark place, my opinion)
size 7 - 8 "
signal system PAL
LED illuminated backlight
adjustable backlight levels for daytime or night-time use
works on a 12VDC
low power consumption 0.8 -1 W




--The small monitor is perfectly adequate if you are more interested in recording than viewing. I can even focus with it. But it is small. Solution? Simple. Use a separate monitor and either switch back and forth between the two or use a splitter. Non-issue.

--Lithium batteries won't last long? Nope. I can easily record hours of video on one charge of the built in battery. And 5-volts is not an issue. The recorder comes with a charger. Just plug it into an AC outlet if your site has power, or, if not, a small inverter powered by a 12-volt battery, and you are OK. But I have never, ever had to recharge the battery over the course of an observing run. Non-issue.

--A large capacity DVR? If you want to haul around and power one, go for it. The Orion recorder will record HOURS on even an 8gb card. These cards are cheap. I would rather switch cards that fuss with some big recorder. Non issue.



Edited by rmollise (01/25/13 07:56 AM)


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mclewis1
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: a__l]
      #5642202 - 01/25/13 09:40 AM

Quote:

Why two monitors on observations? In Mallincam one video output? Second (S-Video) - the old version.



The Mallincam video cameras except the Jr. all have both composite (CVBS) and S-Video outputs. Both outputs are always enabled so you can use them simultaneously.

There are many many different video setup options but it's quite common to use the S-Video for the high quality monitor and the composite feed for a smaller monitor that would be close to the eyepiece (for focusing and framing objects).

Ideally you'd like the DVR device to also be on the higher quality S-Video feed but unfortunately most devices sold now don't support that interface.

With my Mallincam I have a small lightweight 2.5" LCD monitor hanging off of the back of the scope attached to the composite feed via a short thin RG-179 cable. A 20' S-Video cable goes back to an S-Video distribution amplifier and from there to ... 1) Speco CRT monitor 2) USB frame grabber 3) 19" LCD monitor 4) HDD/DVD based DVR.


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: wolfman_4_ever]
      #5642299 - 01/25/13 10:36 AM

Quote:

Market it to astronomers.. triple the markup..




Keep in mind, the unit he is talking about is NOT the same as the Orion. As good as? Maybe, maybe not. Support of any kind? Probably not. The Orion has been proven for use with a Mallincam in the field.


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5642344 - 01/25/13 11:05 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Market it to astronomers.. triple the markup..




Keep in mind, the unit he is talking about is NOT the same as the Orion. As good as? Maybe, maybe not. Support of any kind? Probably not. The Orion has been proven for use with a Mallincam in the field.




Darn good point, Rod. Too many times we (myself included) are too willing to jump on something that "looks the same" but is much cheaper, all the while overlooking the proven performer.


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Doug Culbertson]
      #5642519 - 01/25/13 12:48 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Market it to astronomers.. triple the markup..




Keep in mind, the unit he is talking about is NOT the same as the Orion. As good as? Maybe, maybe not. Support of any kind? Probably not. The Orion has been proven for use with a Mallincam in the field.




Darn good point, Rod. Too many times we (myself included) are too willing to jump on something that "looks the same" but is much cheaper, all the while overlooking the proven performer.




I agree re. support for my unit .
However, I am not LOOKING at the unit, I have it and use it .
The on-screen menu is self explanatory, the remote is RF (I know because I looked inside the unit , it's a 433MHz OOK xmitter, basically a glorified garage door opener with maybe 100ft range) .
It can be used powered by its internal battery for hours but if you really need external power, you can power it off a mini-usb cable . Any 12v car adapter with USB charging output would work to power it continuously . It draws under 100mA .
The user "manual" is a joke so if you're not technically inclined don't even think about it. There are a multitude of youtube videos showing how to use it anyway .
And for 1/3 the cost, I figured I would need to buy and destroy 2 units and buy a third to break even with the Orion unit .


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wolfman_4_ever
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 07/15/11

Loc: El Segundo, Ca, So. Cal
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5642649 - 01/25/13 01:55 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Market it to astronomers.. triple the markup..




Keep in mind, the unit he is talking about is NOT the same as the Orion. As good as? Maybe, maybe not. Support of any kind? Probably not. The Orion has been proven for use with a Mallincam in the field.




I guess you haven't seen the orion customer service post? The orion dvr is a Chinese product with the orion label slapped on it. Exactly like the mallencam. They should work very well together. Who proved it works in the field?


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mclewis1
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: wolfman_4_ever]
      #5642680 - 01/25/13 02:16 PM

Quote:

The orion dvr is a Chinese product with the orion label slapped on it. Exactly like the mallencam.



Now Dave, you have to know making that statement is probably going to cause all kinds of havoc. I know you've also spent some time in the Yahoo Mallincam group which would have provided some clarity to the background of the Mallincam.

AFIK while Rock uses some components from Wakamaya and others there's a lot of his own IP and specialty built components in each camera. He definately doesn't just slap his label on some other product.

From the Yahoo group, selected parts of a posting by Rock from about a year ago in reference to his video cameras ...

"Cabinet and main CPU is made by Wakayama, a parent company of Mintron who makes OEM and industrial
and commercial camera manufacturing for others. Our main video ccd board is design by us and all ccd sensor are hand picked and installed right here in our premise.

Rear board and preamp output is also design by us, and we use a Holtek preamp at the ccd sensor stage.

Our Peltiers are made in Russia custom made by them for MallinCam, Peltier digital driver are made by Bel who makes various voltage units using digital pulse technology."


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Dwight J
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Reged: 05/14/09

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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5642795 - 01/25/13 03:24 PM

It is easy to shoot from the bushes. That is one reason this forum is fairly stagnant. Lots of Mallincam bashing. I, for one, will take it in stride as after a while it becomes shrill. I wonder if using a cheap plossl is the same as using a Brandon? You can see the moon through both.

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rmollise
Postmaster
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: wolfman_4_ever]
      #5642796 - 01/25/13 03:24 PM

Quote:



I guess you haven't seen the orion customer service post? The orion dvr is a Chinese product with the orion label slapped on it. Exactly like the mallencam. They should work very well together. Who proved it works in the field?




Nope. Of course the Orion is made in China, but even a quick glance shows it is OBVIOUSLY not the same as the other unit.

Who proved it? I did and Paul did to name just two people on this board


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5642805 - 01/25/13 03:28 PM

Also, I believe folks are getting two products intertwined. The Orion DVR and the Mallincam remote shutter control

As for the latter: ROCK MALLIN SAYS DON'T use it. If you want to risk your thousand dollar plus camera by doing so to save 150 bucks, don't say you weren't warned.


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: Dwight J]
      #5642819 - 01/25/13 03:35 PM

Quote:

It is easy to shoot from the bushes. That is one reason this forum is fairly stagnant. Lots of Mallincam bashing. I, for one, will take it in stride as after a while it becomes shrill. I wonder if using a cheap plossl is the same as using a Brandon? You can see the moon through both.




I agree, and as the OP, I would appreciate it if these guys would start their own thread. Of course, it would probably go about as well as their last one.


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Undermidnight
BEOTS "Tweener Cup" winner
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Loc: Untermitternacht
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: wolfman_4_ever]
      #5642825 - 01/25/13 03:37 PM

Quote:

I guess you haven't seen the orion customer service post? The orion dvr is a Chinese product with the orion label slapped on it. Exactly like the mallencam. They should work very well together. Who proved it works in the field?




Cut out the vendor bashing or another potential thread is getting locked. Especially when it appears these types of accusations are unsubstantiated. Take it offline or take it up with the vendor directly.

What part of vendor bashing do folks not understand?

Jason

Edited by Undermidnight (01/25/13 03:46 PM)


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mclewis1
Thread Killer
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5642999 - 01/25/13 05:18 PM

Quote:

Also, I believe folks are getting two products intertwined. The Orion DVR and the Mallincam remote shutter control



Rod, Good point ... I didn't initially read it that way, I read "Exactly like the Mallencam." and only thought of the camera and that is probably my mistake.

So Dave you have my apology if what you meant was the Mallincam wireless remote control ... but I'll leave my post in place in case others read things the way I did.


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5643009 - 01/25/13 05:24 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Also, I believe folks are getting two products intertwined. The Orion DVR and the Mallincam remote shutter control



Rod, Good point ... I didn't initially read it that way, I read "Exactly like the Mallencam." and only thought of the camera and that is probably my mistake.

So Dave you have my apology if what you meant was the Mallincam wireless remote control ... but I'll leave my post in place in case others read things the way I did.



This thread got all messed up with posts about whether to use or not the Mallincam wireless remote mixed with opinions about other remote (wireless or not ) options, then about remote LCD screens, then DVR's with or without remotes. There is information here but it's misplaced.


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wolfman_4_ever
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 07/15/11

Loc: El Segundo, Ca, So. Cal
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5643090 - 01/25/13 06:19 PM

I thought the OP wanted Yes or no on MWEC.

This post has become way to political.. Mallincam fanboys strike again!! If you own one, are you one too? I guess I am. I love my MCX!

Quote:



So Dave you have my apology if what you meant was the Mallincam wireless remote control ... but I'll leave my post in place in case others read things the way I did.




Cool... I never read it.. these posts moved onto page 2..

Pointing out where a product originally came from is not vendor bashing.. A few vendors take GSO accessories and slap there name on it.. A few vendors take Sinta Telescopes and slap there name on it.. A few vendors take Sony panels and put there name on it... And that list could go on for days.. Those vendors may or may not make changes to the product. What about the failure or inconsistencies found in refractor focusers? PE#'s in mounts? Suggesting aftermarket parts to fix those issues is not vendor bashing. Pointing this out just makes a more educated consumer. A more educated consumer can than make their own decision on which product to buy...Suppressing this kind of information is a slap in the face for freedom of information.

Example. I make my own radio with CD player out of parts.. It kind of looks like a Sony Radio without cd player. In fact I had to take some parts from the Sony to finish my radio with cd player.. Making my own radio with cd player was cheaper than buying sony radio/cd player in one. I than make this information available to the pubic on the internet without any fees or profit. Is this somehow blasphemous? Did I violate any trade marks? Not in the eyes of the law.


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plav1959
sage
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Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: Central Florida
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5643420 - 01/25/13 09:42 PM

Quote:

Quote:



I guess you haven't seen the orion customer service post? The orion dvr is a Chinese product with the orion label slapped on it. Exactly like the mallencam. They should work very well together. Who proved it works in the field?




Nope. Of course the Orion is made in China, but even a quick glance shows it is OBVIOUSLY not the same as the other unit.

Who proved it? I did and Paul did to name just two people on this board




Yes I've used it in the field attached to my UTA for focusing, recording and as a monitor. It has a brushed aluminum case and is built like a tank. I've had dew dripping off it every time out and have not had any issues.


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: plav1959]
      #5643472 - 01/25/13 10:19 PM

Quote:


Yes I've used it in the field attached to my UTA for focusing, recording and as a monitor. It has a brushed aluminum case and is built like a tank. I've had dew dripping off it every time out and have not had any issues.



Hmmm, let's see the tank that has a thin brushed sheet aluminum face and plastic underneath .


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rmollise
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5643957 - 01/26/13 08:38 AM

Quote:


Hmmm, let's see the tank that has a thin brushed sheet aluminum face and plastic underneath .




The Orion DVR works and works well for me. You've tried it and had a different experience?


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Doug Culbertson
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5644003 - 01/26/13 09:14 AM

Moderator please lock this thread. It has managed to wander far from my original question. If this krap is typical of the video astronomy forum, I believe that I will just try to figure things out on my own. Thanks to those who actually offered helpful advice.

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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5644030 - 01/26/13 09:36 AM

Quote:

Quote:


Hmmm, let's see the tank that has a thin brushed sheet aluminum face and plastic underneath .




The Orion DVR works and works well for me. You've tried it and had a different experience?




What is the problem ????
Have YOU tried MY KS-650M unit and had a different experience ?
The one I own and use and works well for me in the field and gave me no problems either?


The KS-650M unit I own is very well made, has a solid feeling to it when you hold it, has a matte rubberized finish like SLR camera lenses .

Inside it has a Zoran chipset , Samsung Flash memory, Hynix RAM, Texas Instruments video front end and LED backlit TFT LCD , all first class components .There isn't much to go wrong inside this thing , it's a simple single board for all the main functions , using quality brand name components so if it works when you acquired it , it will keep working for the foreseeable future . Remote is stainless steel .FWIW.


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5644093 - 01/26/13 10:15 AM

Quote:



What is the problem ????
Have YOU tried MY KS-650M unit and had a different experience ?
The one I own and use and works well for me in the field and gave me no problems either?


The KS-650M unit I own is very well made, has a solid feeling to it when you hold it, has a matte rubberized finish like SLR camera lenses .

Inside it has a Zoran chipset , Samsung Flash memory, Hynix RAM, Texas Instruments video front end and LED backlit TFT LCD , all first class components .There isn't much to go wrong inside this thing , it's a simple single board for all the main functions , using quality brand name components so if it works when you acquired it , it will keep working for the foreseeable future . Remote is stainless steel .FWIW.




The problem is that you are criticizing a piece of kit you've never used. I'm sure whatever you are using works fine, didn't imply it didn't, and have no use for the widget since I've already got something I like a lot.


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mattflastro
Vendor - Astrovideo Systems


Reged: 07/31/09

Loc: Brevard County , FL
Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5644168 - 01/26/13 10:58 AM

Quote:

Quote:



What is the problem ????
Have YOU tried MY KS-650M unit and had a different experience ?
The one I own and use and works well for me in the field and gave me no problems either?


The KS-650M unit I own is very well made, has a solid feeling to it when you hold it, has a matte rubberized finish like SLR camera lenses .

Inside it has a Zoran chipset , Samsung Flash memory, Hynix RAM, Texas Instruments video front end and LED backlit TFT LCD , all first class components .There isn't much to go wrong inside this thing , it's a simple single board for all the main functions , using quality brand name components so if it works when you acquired it , it will keep working for the foreseeable future . Remote is stainless steel .FWIW.




The problem is that you are criticizing a piece of kit you've never used. I'm sure whatever you are using works fine, didn't imply it didn't, and have no use for the widget since I've already got something I like a lot.



I just stated the alternative I am using and in no way does that mean criticism of other devices . As I said before , I have not used the Orion DVR and have no first hand knowledge of its performance . I am using the KS-650M and found no problems with its functionality .



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rmollise
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: mattflastro]
      #5644268 - 01/26/13 11:51 AM

Quote:


I just stated the alternative I am using and in no way does that mean criticism of other devices .




"Hmmm, let's see the tank that has a thin brushed sheet aluminum face and plastic underneath."

Coulda fooled me...


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Undermidnight
BEOTS "Tweener Cup" winner
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Re: Mallincam Wireless Exposure Controller; Yes or No? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5644349 - 01/26/13 12:51 PM

And around the drain it goes.

Jason


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