Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

ASI1600 - Has its performance matched the hype?

  • Please log in to reply
150 replies to this topic

#51 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 31 May 2016 - 10:05 PM

 

I don't know how fair it is to compare used KAF-8300 cameras to brand new ASI1600 cameras. Who knows what the used cost of an ASI will settle at, and I suspect the price to value ratio will remain similar.

 

I wasn't trying to compare them to used. The baseline is $1300 versus $2000.  Everything after that just narrows the percentage difference, assuming you add the same accessories to each.

 

I think the camera is a good deal. 



#52 bigeastro

bigeastro

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,340
  • Joined: 20 Feb 2015
  • Loc: Southwest Florida

Posted 31 May 2016 - 10:06 PM

 

the tablets get a small circular rubber pad stuck to the bottom, that sits in a small cup inside the 1600. when you screw the top of the 1600 tight it holds everything in place.

having that pad be sticky on both sides wouldn't be too intrusive at the expense of not being perfect. just a thought.


OK I thought the pad was on top of the tablet. It can still get lose easily.

Having tablet sits inside a holding tube, and the tube can be fastened/screwed into the cup, would be the best design I can think of, without too much re-engineering by ZWO.

 

Hello,

 

I won't really participate in the debate as to whther or not the camera beats conventional CCDs, but I do have a question.  I am more trolling around for information, not consternation, and have always had a problem with premature.......issuance of images.  Anyways, I think the rubberized tab is on top of the dessicant tab in order to provide a fricitional buffer between the top of the tab and the lid.  The bottom of the dessicant tab is held by the metal cups that are formed for that dessicant tab.  Is this not the case?  If the rubber tab is at the bottom then my dessicant is installed incorrectly.

 

This is kind of off topic.  I guess I can email Sam to confirm.

 

Thanks



#53 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 31 May 2016 - 10:07 PM


I think the latest discussion was about much longer sub length, therefore long integration time as a result.

In that regard, the 1600's 2000s exposure time limitation is odd, and that can be an issue if people really need to go deep.

Deeper than 30 minutes?

Looking at astrobin I don't see anything past 1800s. I am not saying there aren't any, but it must be rare.
Yes I am talking about those rare projects.😆

But the ability to do well in long exposures and without any hassle should be one of the measures of a good camera. The same reason people pay premium for mounts that can track for long hours without fiddling.

Come to think of it, why so many bought the Polemaster? It is not as if sub arc min PA accuracy is critical for most situations.

If a product can achieve a lot more than what is normally needed, it is a sign of its superior status, and it can come handy when situations arise.

A prefect example when I had a hard time stacking some NB subs because DSS could not find 8 stars to align, I relied on PM's pinpoint PA accuracy made the object and the stars stuck to their positions with accuracy down to pixel level over the entire imaging session, and simply used "no alignment" to stack them with success.

For that occasion, I had to do a few PM runs to get there. Most times there is no need for such effort, but knowing when called for the product can deliver, is a good thing.

Edited by FirstC8, 31 May 2016 - 10:16 PM.


#54 KGoodwin

KGoodwin

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 543
  • Joined: 22 Apr 2013
  • Loc: North Georgia, USA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 09:00 AM

 

 

Is there something that concerns you about the cooling? I've had very good luck with it so far on that account.

 

Yes, the reports thus far, and my own experience with the 178.

 

I am not saying it is bad, but I am used to better and I am also used to no vibration. Some of you are running the cooling flat out and you will soon learn that is not the way to go because you are going to spend an enormous amount of time making new darks as the temp increases. And we already established that the power reported is on a logarithmic scale, like the gas pedal on a GM car. Half way down is actually 90% power, not 50%. Every other cooled camera that I have has a scale that is more linear. For example, if you are getting 40 degree delta on a 40 to 45 deg camera, it should read 90% or 95%, not 40%. And the sensor heats up when it is imaging and you need to leave some room for that as well. Except for the vibration, most of this is nit picking. The linear scale can be fixed in software. As for the fan, I thought about getting rubber grommets for it.

 

 

I am able to get the -40C delta which is the maximum spec, even when the camera heats up during imaging, doing either rapid bias frames or very long light/dark frames and still keep the cooler power under 50%.  I understand what you're saying about the 50% really being 90%, but even in that case it's perfectly stable there, it never goes into runaway mode and kicks in to 100% cooling where it can't keep the temperature stable.  I have to attempt to get a -45C delta or more in order for that to happen, which is beyond the cooling specs for the camera.  If I use a -35C delta the cooler sits at about 25-30% power.  That's how I will probably run it in practice, which is no different from my experience with Atik cameras where I would run about 5C less than the maximum spec delta generally and be very stable.

 

The vibration concerns me if it is actually an issue with imaging.  I haven't really noticed vibration in my camera from the fans and haven't heard some of the noises others are describing.  That could definitely be an issue with lower cost fans having more variable quality/reliability.  I'd like to design a way to test for this quantitatively so we will know if it's a real issue generally or in the particular case of any given camera.  I'm very interested to see where the discussion goes with regards to vibration.



#55 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 01 June 2016 - 09:16 AM

If guiding is involved, the vibration issue might be tested out by turning the fan on and off and monitor the tracking graph. But if there is fan vibration it would be in such a high frequency I don't know much can be visible.

#56 KGoodwin

KGoodwin

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 543
  • Joined: 22 Apr 2013
  • Loc: North Georgia, USA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 09:34 AM

If guiding is involved, the vibration issue might be tested out by turning the fan on and off and monitor the tracking graph. But if there is fan vibration it would be in such a high frequency I don't know much can be visible.

 

Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan.  It would have to either be a reasonably long exposure to ensure it wasn't just momentary change in seeing or an artificial star bench test, I think.  I will see if I can rig something up, perhaps with my artificial star and a very narrowband or neutral density filter.  I'm very intrigued to see the results!  (Although I do have the feeling that with things like this I tend to go down rabbit holes looking for problems with new equipment when I should probably just be taking pictures...)



#57 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 01 June 2016 - 10:21 AM

Without the fan on, setpoint temp control is no longer available, and calibration will not be accurate. If the test exposures are long, there may be too much noise for a good comparison.

Maybe taking daytime images at a stable room temperature with dark calibration?

#58 KGoodwin

KGoodwin

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 543
  • Joined: 22 Apr 2013
  • Loc: North Georgia, USA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 10:28 AM

Without the fan on, setpoint temp control is no longer available, and calibration will not be accurate. If the test exposures are long, there may be too much noise for a good comparison.

Maybe taking daytime images at a stable room temperature with dark calibration?

 

I was going to try the artificial star inside and not enable cooling in either case, just plug in for the fan to run.  The exposures will be short and I will only bias correct them, no dark correction.  We should still be able to get a good FWHM read on that I think.



#59 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 11:51 AM

"Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan."

 

At long focal lengths it will show up as elongated stars, which become round again when you turn the fan off.



#60 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 01 June 2016 - 01:10 PM

"Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan."

At long focal lengths it will show up as elongated stars, which become round again when you turn the fan off.

So you did test this on your camera?

For my camera (at 2000mm FL) since the PHD2 graph showed as good as 0.5" target accuracy when seeing allowed it, I don't think my fan (not an ASI1600) is causing any problem. Average seeing is the problem.

Edited by FirstC8, 01 June 2016 - 01:15 PM.


#61 KGoodwin

KGoodwin

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 543
  • Joined: 22 Apr 2013
  • Loc: North Georgia, USA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 01:11 PM

"Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan."

 

At long focal lengths it will show up as elongated stars, which become round again when you turn the fan off.

 

I will test this at ~3m focal length on an artificial star.  Hopefully that should be long enough.  (And I think for my usage, if it's not then I'm not going to worry about it.)



#62 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 01:42 PM

 

"Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan."

 

At long focal lengths it will show up as elongated stars, which become round again when you turn the fan off.

 

I will test this at ~3m focal length on an artificial star.  Hopefully that should be long enough.  (And I think for my usage, if it's not then I'm not going to worry about it.)

 

 

 

That should be sufficient. This was the result with the ASI178 at 2800mm...

 

ASI178MM-COOL_Fan_Vibration.jpg

 

I figured it out when I was collimating, and the reason I was collimating was that I thought that was the issue. On a whim, I unplugged the 12v and it went away.


  • StarDust1 and bigeastro like this

#63 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 01:46 PM

And it probably has to do with your setup. With the 178, which I think is the same body, you can actually feel the vibration in your hand. It may have hit a resonant frequency with my Moonlight focuser, which has a twang to it, if you know what I mean. The draw tube is thin and held tightly.



#64 WesC

WesC

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 5,322
  • Joined: 06 Feb 2013
  • Loc: La Crescenta, CA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 02:02 PM

So the price of this camera is set to increase... its not staying at $1300... anyone know what its going up to?


  • ChrisL likes this

#65 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 02:05 PM

It is $1,200 now, on sale, but the non-sale price is $1,300.



#66 WesC

WesC

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 5,322
  • Joined: 06 Feb 2013
  • Loc: La Crescenta, CA

Posted 01 June 2016 - 02:09 PM

I see. The ZWO site lists it at $1,280 so I guess that sale is over. Has been for a few days.



#67 DRK73

DRK73

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 589
  • Joined: 08 Mar 2013
  • Loc: Maryland, United States

Posted 01 June 2016 - 03:30 PM

So I have a question - which I would ask in the form of a poll if possible (but since I don't know how to do that or cannot on this site), but since it's not, here goes:

 

If the SBIG STF-8300 and this new ASI 1600 camera were the same price, which would you purchase? 



#68 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 03:36 PM

That depends. As a first camera, I would go with the 1600 because it can do DSO well and it has more features, like the ability to do planetary.

 

The only reason I would go with the STF-8300 at this point (after all of the testing done on the other threads) is for more sophisticated options like integrated filter wheel / OAG and the better build quality. Although (obviously) I find QSI's packaging nicer than SBIGs. But I like the idea of a reducer for the guid camera (SBIG). Finally, I like the 5.4 um pixel size better for my OTA, but I am kind of convinced that this isn't a big deal.


Edited by syscore, 01 June 2016 - 03:37 PM.


#69 Mickey_C

Mickey_C

    Viking 1

  • ****-
  • Posts: 504
  • Joined: 27 Apr 2005
  • Loc: AZ

Posted 01 June 2016 - 03:49 PM

It is $1,200 now, on sale, but the non-sale price is $1,300

 

So I have a question - which I would ask in the form of a poll if possible (but since I don't know how to do that or cannot on this site), but since it's not, here goes:
 
If the SBIG STF-8300 and this new ASI 1600 camera were the same price, which would you purchase? 

 
What?

 

I bought a used STF-8300C (osc) for $1,100 with shipping.

 

I paid $980 + shipping for a brand new ASI1600mc (also osc) from Opt Corp (which oddly had it in stock, which was why I grabbed it).

So I'm confused by the pricing above. Is that for a mono with filter wheels? Everything I've seen the new ASI without the wheels is less than the OSC one I bought, and both of them are still less than the 8300, and the mono cameras are less than the OSC cameras.



#70 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 03:53 PM

"I paid $980 + shipping for a brand new ASI1600mc (also osc) from Opt Corp (which oddly had it in stock, which was why I grabbed it).

So I'm confused by the pricing above. Is that for a mono with filter wheels? Everything I've seen the new ASI without the wheels is less than the OSC one I bought, and both of them are still less than the 8300, and the mono cameras are less than the OSC cameras."

 

The OSC versions are $200 cheaper. That is even true with the CCD versions. 



#71 telfish

telfish

    3D Astro Solutions, custom 3D printing for Astrophotography

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,115
  • Joined: 17 Nov 2010
  • Loc: Adirondack Mountains NY

Posted 01 June 2016 - 04:05 PM

I would go with the 1600 as it's more versatile. Planetary, EAA and DSO. All in one package.



#72 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 01 June 2016 - 06:25 PM



"Perhaps it could be tested by monitoring FWHM of an exposure with and without the fan."

At long focal lengths it will show up as elongated stars, which become round again when you turn the fan off.


I will test this at ~3m focal length on an artificial star. Hopefully that should be long enough. (And I think for my usage, if it's not then I'm not going to worry about it.)


That should be sufficient. This was the result with the ASI178 at 2800mm...

ASI178MM-COOL_Fan_Vibration.jpg

I figured it out when I was collimating, and the reason I was collimating was that I thought that was the issue. On a whim, I unplugged the 12v and it went away.

Hmmm, this seems to be a rather easy test, I will try it tonight.

Wish I had done it sooner, don't know how much wear over time can add to the vibration.

#73 glend

glend

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,910
  • Joined: 04 Feb 2014

Posted 01 June 2016 - 06:37 PM

I have seen no fan vibration issues with the 1600. If you think the 178 has issues then return it under warranty. My star tests using a bahtinov mask, on a night with great seeing conditions, show wonderful precise sharp diffraction spikes, which do not change when the fan is turned off. A test which i believe is far more informative than unfocused tests which can be seeing and collimation  affected.


Edited by glend, 01 June 2016 - 06:37 PM.


#74 syscore

syscore

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,711
  • Joined: 07 Sep 2015
  • Loc: Space Coast, Florida

Posted 01 June 2016 - 06:42 PM

Lol, you are doing exactly what you claimed people were doing. Stop it.:) I think we can discuss this camera and its performance openly.

 

And you can see it in focused star tests as well. I just happened (as I explained) to be in the middle of a collimation when I took the picture.


  • BobPeck likes this

#75 FirstC8

FirstC8

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,118
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2016

Posted 01 June 2016 - 06:45 PM

I have seen no fan vibration issues with the 1600. If you think the 178 has issues then return it under warranty. My star tests using a bahtinov mask, on a night with great seeing conditions, show wonderful precise sharp diffraction spikes, which do not change when the fan is turned off. A test which i believe is far more informative than unfocused tests which can be seeing and collimation affected.


How so? Syscore's test has only one variable, the fan, all other factors were equal, seeing and collimation and...


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics