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New Mallincam 4:3rds coming it seems

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#26 ccs_hello

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Posted 06 September 2016 - 07:49 PM

The simplest form of Asian sourcing is "buy in bulk, private labeling, then import/resale".

Very often the original manufacturer has a base model with some deviation possibilities (color, packaging, minor add-on, etc.)

Very often, the manufacturer also sells their own products.  After all, the cams are their own design and intellectual rights belong to the manufacturer.  Not the rebrander.

 

Remember that astro market is extremely small, so most of these camera mfgs have their main focus in other popular usages (microscope, surveillance, etc.)

 

The most important question is which astro imager related special knowledge (low light, long exposure, low noise, less pattern noise, etc.) is known.

For now, on CMOS based astro imagers, I see a few in a mfg (yes Q does have its mfg arrangement) and another one is catching up fast (Z.)

 

Please do not ask me exactly what they do above and beyond, I can assure you there are something special, depend on models.  Hint, get a (your most favorite) image sensor datasheet, imagine you are going to deign an astro imager using that sensor as a design engineer.  You'll soon find some essential functions are not available.  That is where the innovations come to fruition.

 

Clear Skies!

 

ccs_hello


 

#27 Dom543

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Posted 06 September 2016 - 09:32 PM

On a more technical note, the Touptek MG3CMOS camera that David has linked in the second post of this thread is a C-mount camera with a 4/3" sensor. 

 

The external diameter of the male C-thread is 1"=25.4mm. The open aperture inside is at least 4mm less than that, say 21.4mm. The diameter of the 4/3 sensor is 22.5mm. That is a restictively tight passage even for parallel light rays. But to make things worse for astronomy use, the sensor is 17.5 mm inside from the front of the C-thread. A 21.4mm field stop 17.5mm from an 22.5mm diameter sensor will create significant vignetting for the f/2 - f/5 focal ratio light cones that we use in near-real time EAA. (I don't know much about microscopy, but they may deal with mostly parallel light rays, in which case the C-mount is o.k.)

 

Maybe Rock Mallin could innovate that the cameras sold under his brand come outfitted with a T-mount.

 

Clear Skies!

--Dom


Edited by Dom543, 06 September 2016 - 09:33 PM.

 

#28 A. Viegas

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Posted 06 September 2016 - 10:02 PM

+1 Dom!

I noticed this c-mount issue immediately when I looked at the specs!! It's ridiculous. The ZWO 1600 has 6.5mm backfocus when you remove the T42 2" adapter. When we originally were discussing the 1600MM camera the comments on the BII forum just dealing with backfocus were probably more than 100. At over 17mm of backfocus for the new Mallincam this will make it impossible to use this camera at anything faster than maybe 0.6x in your typical F10 SCT. Moreover also if you use filters or screw on focal reducers this will further constrain the light cone. I previously experimented using a c-mount adapter sold by ZWO for the 1600MM which is also 22mm diagonal. The vignetting using the old c-mount MFR5 combination of lenses plus my C0.63 reducer were all badly vignetted. Matter of fact I have given up imaging with the 1600 on my C11 and it now rides on my refractors which are faster and do not need focal reduction
. To this end I think at best with an SCT and a 22mm diagonal chip plus c-mount at best you could use a 0.63x reducer on a F10 SCT and then you will have some vignetting and if you use filters then there will be even more. So arguably this new camera would probably be best suited for fast refractors or newts

Al

Edited by A. Viegas, 06 September 2016 - 10:04 PM.

 

#29 Dragon Man

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Posted 07 September 2016 - 08:23 AM

. . . 

This is like DejaVu.  Check about the 2:25 mark on the youtube link below.  There's a story about how Rock invented/designed the HD SDI camera and actually picked out the sensor for it.  I find it pretty funny because Ken James (aka Dragon Man on CN) found the EXACT same camera with the EXACT Sensor on ali-express about 9 months before this broadcast.  Rock just rebadged the camera Ken found.  I wonder if Rock gave Ken a finder's fee?

 

I think Rock would be better served if he was actually more honest and gave credit where credit was due.  But that's only my opinion.

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=2ekgRQCrFNU

 

Do you remember that Ken?

 

http://astrovideofor...egapixel-camera

 

David B in NM

 

Yes, I remember that David.

Also note that on the Mallincam site is the claim of Mallincam's uniqueness of having a moveable sensor board on the SDI: "The MALLINCAM-SDI also has a unique sensor depth feature which allows the user to fine tune the focus position of the camera on their telescope".

That is a standard feature of most box cameras!

I even have it on my Samsung 4000.

Innovative? No. Claiming another product design feature again? Yes.

The only uniqueness about it is that it is unique to the millions of Box cameras with this design feature and came as a standard feature on that and many cameras.

What is unique about it is that you can get the $85 LN-Tech SDI but with 'Mallincam' printed on the side instead of the boring name 'LNTECH' for only an extra $215. Must be expensive label printing ink   :undecided:

About unique as the 'Limited Edition' Red CF ED80 that isn't 'Limited' elsewhere

Enuff said.


 

#30 jimthompson

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Posted 07 September 2016 - 08:36 AM

On a more technical note, the Touptek MG3CMOS camera that David has linked in the second post of this thread is a C-mount camera with a 4/3" sensor. 

 

The external diameter of the male C-thread is 1"=25.4mm. The open aperture inside is at least 4mm less than that, say 21.4mm. The diameter of the 4/3 sensor is 22.5mm. That is a restictively tight passage even for parallel light rays. But to make things worse for astronomy use, the sensor is 17.5 mm inside from the front of the C-thread. A 21.4mm field stop 17.5mm from an 22.5mm diameter sensor will create significant vignetting for the f/2 - f/5 focal ratio light cones that we use in near-real time EAA. (I don't know much about microscopy, but they may deal with mostly parallel light rays, in which case the C-mount is o.k.)

 

Maybe Rock Mallin could innovate that the cameras sold under his brand come outfitted with a T-mount.

 

Clear Skies!

--Dom

I've seen Rock's prototype 4/3" camera.  It is in the same casing as the DS2.3+, which has a native T-thread in the housing.  The pictures you see online have the removable T-to-C thread adapter installed...it is the shiny chrome plated thingy you see in the pictures.  This is the same idea as on ZWO cameras.  The only difference I noted is I think the clear optical window over the sensor was larger on the 4/3" camera than on the DS2.3+.

 

cheers,

 

Jim T.


 

#31 mclewis1

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Posted 07 September 2016 - 02:17 PM

It would be interesting to see exactly how Rock had the camera setup with the scopes he was using that night when doing the testing.

 

The posted pic of M13 was done with a VRC8, Universe 2" .75x reducer and the new SkyRaider camera. Without stretching the image or anything like that to check things more closely it doesn't look like there's any appreciable vignetting.

 

If I had to guess ... The C-mount adapter on the camera would have been removed and the T thread adapter for that focal reducer (removing the 2" barrel attachment) threaded on.

 

With some other popular focal reducers and after that C-mount adapter is removed ...

 

With a 2" .5x reducer there will need to be a 2" to T thread adapter (one with the 2" M48 filter threads), some T thread spacers that would then thread directly onto the camera.

 

With the .33x SCT reducer it would be the SCT T thread adapter, and like the setup above some T thread spacers.


 

#32 Stew57

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Posted 07 September 2016 - 06:38 PM

I would think when one designs a 4/3 Astro camera from the ground up a c mount would not be the first choice.
 

#33 mclewis1

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Posted 07 September 2016 - 09:24 PM

Yup, and a good thing nobody seems to have done that.

 

Having a C-mount option even with that big sensor is a nice touch as there are many folks with 1.25" adapters and focal reducers available so you can get the camera into action quickly and inexpensively.

 

Clearly though anyone buying a camera with a type 4/3" sized sensor will eventually need to invest in a 2" or SCT type of focal reducer(s), appropriate spacers, a 2" barrel attachment and filters.


Edited by mclewis1, 07 September 2016 - 09:25 PM.

 

#34 Lorence

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 02:03 PM

Lorence,

 

Up to now, Rock has bragged about how he developed the cameras hasn't he?  Do you see a difference in his claims and other companies?  I have yet to see a company go to the extremes that Mallincam does to sell their products.

 

Don't you feel credit should be given where do?  Does slapping a label on a camera mean the camera was designed by them?

 

As to a CN camera...gee...IMHO we act in the same capacity as Mallincam.  Some of us hunt for good cameras that are already sold and suggest them (mainly security cameras).  We don't slap a label on them and then resell them saying we designed them.  That's the only difference.

 

I see a big difference in recommending/endorsing and rebadging products.  Maybe you don't though.  Why can't Rock suggest cameras?  The HD SDI cam was available at Mallincam for a $200 increase for the label only?  Is this promoting Astronomy or making a profit?

 

I suggested Rock become more honest and humble and stop the hype.  What's wrong with that?

 

David B in NM

 

 

Where's Rock's customer service critique? How many dissatisfied customer complaints have you seen on any forum.  All I've seen from this group is nitpicking camera construction when none here has ever seen what goes on inside his shop. How many here have actually taken one of those allegedly re branded cameras apart right down to the firmware and compared it to the original.

 

If you want truth in advertising better move to another planet. Rock is as entitled to put a spin on his product as does every corporation, lawyer and politician on this planet. You want truth, then lets have the credentials of the critics listed here as well as their contributions to the hobby. By the way, reading every post in this forum is not much of a credential but unfortunately I think it will top the list. 

 

Rock has to sell cameras to stay in business and have the resources to expand his product line. His products work as well or better than his claims. How and what he does inside his shop is as much business of this forum as are the trade secrets of the companies you have worked for. Lets hear you blow the whistle on you employers. So what if it puts them out of business and you out of a job. It will be fun. :) 

 

Where is the evidence supporting the accusations?  Without it all you have is the ranting of a few of questionable character. So far all I've seen is "There's a picture on the Internet of a camera that looks like one of Rocks therefor his cameras are just re-branded.' and of course several regurgitation of the same.

 

I doubt if it has occurred to many here but if it were not for Rock and his original cameras most here would still be playing with webcams and eyepieces. Provided they were still involved in astronomy.

 

As for bringing something new to the table, what has been brought to it by Rocks critics and competitors?  What I have seen form the competitors is simply jumping on the bandwagon he built and grabbing a quick profit. What I see from the critics can best be described as sour grapes.


 

#35 David B in NM

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 02:34 PM

Gee Lorence,

 

I guess my Micro surely doesn't function exactly the same as my LN300 NTSC model.  Nor are the components the same (same everything to include the DSP inside it).  When the factory defaults are restored they are the exact same number too.  The only difference is the green LED on my LN300 and Red one on the Micro.  They are clones.

 

My LNTech HD SDI camera is a clone of the MC model.  I don't need to see the inside of the real deal.  Rock was kind enough to provide pictures and show the pcb and components. He also provided the sensor used in it.

 

I'll leave it up to you on the LNTech dome cam and the MC All Sky to believe me.  The youtube earlier on maintaining it and the link to it on ali prove the cases are the same and the black plastic dome.  Did you know the DSP was an RJ10 too?  Guess what, my LNTech has the same DSP.

 

Rock can't do anything to add his touch to any of the above three cameras except add his label. 

 

As to his ToupTek cams ask yourself a simple question.  If only the CASES for the color DSc were tied up at customs and he had his video boards in the shop, why didn't he take some of the mono boards out of their case and place the color pcb model in it to sell?  If he did that "simple task" and actually tested the software he would have found it didn't work for the SR DSc.  Right?  Could it be the cases also contained the color DSc pcbs?  I'll let you think about that one.

 

I don't call placing a label on something and taking credit for you designing it a "spin".

 

I don't think Rock lost any money.  If you want to see how the cameras are priced contact ToupTek.  Would it surprise you that his prices are GREATLY increased for the label only (can't do anything to the CMOS cameras).  Maybe he could "afford" to have good customer service and still enjoy a hefty profit.  But, I agree he did have satisfied customers.

 

Please remember, in a previous post I said the demise of MC began when AVS started and when Rock began selling the LNTech cameras.  It carried in to the ToupTek line after that.  I never said anything about his older analogue line-up or the improvements he made to them.  As some has said in this thread, Rock needs to return to his roots and design (modify) other analog cameras. 

 

Please note, there was also one other act Rock did that opened the eyes of many of his former fan-base.

 

Gee, I guess you must not agree ZWO, Atik and SX don't offer good alternatives.  I'd also say Atik put a new spin on our hobby with their program and so did the freeware program Paul offered for SX.  I'd consider this something new.

 

Many people started EAA using webcams, then older Panny video cams in this forum then went on to Sammy's. Then to MC.

 

It certainly seems as though you feel differently about Rock's claims than I do.  As stated earlier in this thread (on the MC website), Rock said he hand picks other camera models.  The problem is, he's never said which ones.  Up to now it must be none because he rants and raves about what a great job he did designing it.  Do you see a difference in "handpicking other cameras" and stating you designed it.  IMHO, it's either one or another for the cameras I described above.

 

Ask yourself this question...if the SR DSc was such a good camera why have so many began to appear in the Classifieds? 

 

I do see things a little differently than you.  I see Rock as a follower now.  Why did he just release the 825 and new "prototype" cams.  They were already in use since other companies offered them.  The difference in the ASI1600 and MC protype is minor.  The MC has 4K capability, the ZWO doesn't.  I don't think any SX or Atik users will be trading in their 825 cams for the MC. Do you see my point here (Rock is a follower)?

 

David B in NM


Edited by David B in NM, 08 September 2016 - 03:38 PM.

 

#36 A. Viegas

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 05:40 PM

I wonder how much Touptek is selling the new 4:3 camera?  Anyone send them an email on Aliexpress and ask?  I would guess $600 for a batch of 20...

 

what would you guess?

Al


 

#37 Relativist

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Posted 08 September 2016 - 05:57 PM

Please get back on topic, thanks.
 

#38 will w

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 04:48 PM

:gotpopcorn:  :gotpopcorn:  Just like usual when mallincam comes out with another camera.  Another rerun from the past. lol lol


 

#39 Relativist

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Posted 09 September 2016 - 06:53 PM

:gotpopcorn: :gotpopcorn: Just like usual when mallincam comes out with another camera. Another rerun from the past. lol lol


Actually I've noticed that this group is very critical of every vendor, there is nothing extraordinary about the treatment.

I think that we should be encouraging vendors to produce more products for us. In this case it seems that there is again an alternate source of the equipment, but that source is NOT an Astro vendor and does not seem to have the same level of support.

All that said there are competitors to this camera, like the ZWO 1600, which has been able to provide great views. I do not consider the QHY42 to be fair to discuss here because it is not yet available and is clearly in another class.


 

#40 Dragon Man

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 09:07 AM

 

 

 

I doubt if it has occurred to many here but if it were not for Rock and his original cameras most here would still be playing with webcams and eyepieces. Provided they were still involved in astronomy.

 

As for bringing something new to the table, what has been brought to it by Rocks critics and competitors?  What I have seen form the competitors is simply jumping on the bandwagon he built and grabbing a quick profit. 

 

This point I must disagree with.

 

Several other Brands were available and doing well before Mallincam became known by most people. Gstar-Ex, StellaCam, Mintron to name a few. All were very popular.

When you look at the field of Video Astronomy, Mallincam cameras only make up a very small portion of the field compared to how many people do it. How many members in this CN Forum for example have a Mallincam? Not a great percentage. 

How many in the SGL Video Astronomy Forum? Even less.

How many in other Video Astronomy Forums? Less again.

In comparison, Mallincam is a minor player.

Agreed, he did develop the best Analogue cameras in the Xtreme and Xterminator. But everything else has been the same as other vendors have. Nothing new. In some cases, his new cameras have been flops.

BUT! Mallincam self promotes more than the others, so Mallincam appears better and larger and more popular than it really is.

And its Fan base (which is gradually diminishing) has been its biggest promotion tool. But now much of that promotion tool crowd has jumped ship to other vendors.

 

Now here we read about another attempt to get sales back up, with another camera that is already available from other vendors. Where has innovation gone?

 

David gives a great example with the price difference between the $85 HD SDI compared to Mallincam's $300 exact same camera.

You say we should also look at the backup service Mallincan supplies. OK. $215 worth of backup service on an $85 camera?

Hmmmm . . . . 

Even more markup on other cameras. Is that for backup service too?

 

I hope this new 'whatever it will be called' camera is good. But the tests so far haven't excited anyone but the Mallincam fanboys who seem to cheer and praise Rock for anything he brings out. Because that's what fanboys do. They support a vendor and help promote their products. But to be honest, loyalty can also be blind.

 

The tests I have seen on this new camera so far aren't any improvement on anything that is already available from anyone else. But that's just my opinion, because I'm not a cronie fanboy.  I'm just another poster in here that has the right to comment whether others agree or not (as the way it should be).


 

#41 Astrojedi

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 10:09 AM

Marketing is a tool which is supposed to highlight the best attributes of a product. It sometimes stretches the truth but it should not make up facts or outright lie which where the line is drawn.

 

After having brought many many products to market in my last 20 years in the technology industry I know exactly when vendors start to become disingenuous.

 

To understand the distinction let me give you an example.

 

Mike at OC is marketing the RI, he is not claiming he invented the video camera. He is marketing and selling the solution he created and is doing it the right way.

 

Over the years Rock's absolutely false marketing has been a big turn off for me. Let's be clear... He did not invent dark frame subtraction or noise reduction or any of the other technologies he claims he did (and even claims he filed a patent... Which has still not been granted). Agreed that he did some R&D to integrate these features to create his original cameras which did help move the hobby forward but again not to the extent he claims.

 

It is this blatantly false marketing which turns intelligent people off including the members of this forum.

 

To me it is clear that in this new non analog world he seems a little out of his depth and not able to see where the market is going. Again this happens all the time in technology even to large companies and is not unique to Rock.


 

#42 David B in NM

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 11:01 AM

Hiten,

 

I agree with your statements above.  IMHO another area that tends to turn intelligent people off is taking credit for information you did not author.

 

If you compare the two links below you will see some examples.  Please note, the article on the MC website closes with "Rock Mallin".   Many will say it's proper etiquette to cite your references.  To start things off read para 2 of the Mallincam article  and compare it to para 1 of the second link.  Then second to the last para of the Mallincam article to third to the last para of the second link,  you'll see what I mean.  There are other "similarities" (verbatim).

 

http://www.mallincam.net/blog

 

and

 

http://www.techbrief...-articles/23094

 

 

 

David B in NM


Edited by Relativist, 11 September 2016 - 09:26 AM.
restored original post

 

#43 OleCuss

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 12:02 PM

Wow!!!  What a thread!

 

IMHO, as long as Rock is not claiming to have invented the camera I'm all in favor of his marketing it.  More competition is better for us!

 

I'm not all that worried about getting the support that Rock gets so I'd not pay a premium to get it, but it would just be normal business practice to mark up the camera to cover the cost of the support.  Fine to pay for it if you want/need that support.

 

Another point is that a lot of people like the community and dealing with just Rock.  You can argue the merits of that way of operating, but Rock would just appear to be serving his market.  The market also appears to be moving rather rapidly away from the analog cameras so if he doesn't move he may lose his market.

 

And just a reminder?  With the CMOS cameras the features and performance are largely determined by the sensor manufacturer.  You can do some modifications in terms of cooling and such, but not all that more unless you want to fork out the dough for the tooling to make a casing customized for that camera/sensor.

 

Look at ZWO?  There are an awful lot of cameras which seem to share just about the same casing.  That means that they can amortize the cost of machining the cases over a lot of cases and they don't have to stock a lot of different cases and attendant parts.  This is an efficient thing from the point of the manufacturer/marketer but does mean that your cases are not necessarily optimized for the use to which you will be putting the camera.

 

You put it all together and you have a market where in order to be competitive you eventually have to go CMOS (market forces as well as the eventual unavailability of the CCD censors).  The manufacturer/marketer won't likely do much modification to the CMOS cameras other than case choice/machining and cooling/not-cooling - because the sensor determines the features of the CMOS camera.  Inventory and tooling costs are going to mean that in order to be competitive the manufacturer/marketer is going to have pressure to keep all the cameras looking similar because they should share cases.

 

A really customized camera is going to be rather rare because the price is likely to be much higher in order to customize the case.

 

Arguably the big place where the astronomy market can innovate is in the software, but developing that software is not at all trivial and has its own costs.  Then you have to continually upgrade and support the software - and that is not cheap if the time you spend on it is valuable.

 

So marketers are going to often be selling similar products using the same software (even if they call it something else) and we get competition on price and a limited set of features.

 

Rock's camera appears to fit into the above mode.  It will just be interesting to see how he positions it in the market.


Edited by OleCuss, 10 September 2016 - 12:04 PM.

 

#44 DSO_Viewer

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 01:02 PM

When I first read this back when it came out last June on the Mallincam web site I thought that Rock knew his stuff and was an expert in ccd/cmos technology. Now I see it as a copy & past of someone else's knowledge with Rocks name just added to the bottom of the report. Thank you David!


Edited by Relativist, 11 September 2016 - 09:21 AM.
restored original post and deleted moderating discussion

 

#45 A. Viegas

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 05:12 PM

Thanks for your opinion Drew. Well I am curious to see how he is going to price this camera. Given that it does not have TEC cooling and the equivalent non cooled Asi 1600mc is under $800... Rock is late to the party on both the 825 and now these larger 4/3rd sensors so if he wants to get back into the game he should price it competitively...

Al
 

#46 Relativist

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 07:16 PM

BTW, If you hadn't noticed there is bigger news afoot.


 

#47 jsardina

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 07:20 PM

http://www.cloudynig...stronomy-forum/


 

#48 A. Viegas

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 08:34 PM

Well there is always much entertaining discussion when Mallincam is the topic! :blahblah:

 

Lets see what Rock is able to deliver.  Personally I hope he can deliver a product that goes beyond imitation and offers value to EAA observers.   He has struggled, there is no doubt in this new age of CMOS and digital... I think long gone are the days he can charge a premium price, in fact he should really try and undercut the other vendors if he wants to have a chance of success coming this late to the 4/3rds party...   Price is going to be the deciding factor...  Because lets face it, before he designed and produced innovative and leading edge analog cameras when the only other competing options where Sammy or Stellacams...  but these days are gone.  He is not innovating I dont think  he is reselling...   certainly I think this is the point that David B is trying to drive home.  A reseller just cannot expect to get paid premium price for commoditized price.  If I am wrong I would be curious to know what features and capabilities this new camera will have over existing ASI/QHY CMOS cameras that would entice an educated EAA consumer to pay more for a camera without TEC and without ASCOM...     lets wait and find out...

 

just my  :penny:  :penny:

 

Al


 

#49 mclewis1

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 11:01 AM

Well the camera appears to now have a name - SkyRaider DS16c (no mention of a mono version) and a price - $1399.99 USD with availability starting in October.

 

http://www.mallincam...ider-ds16c.html


Edited by mclewis1, 13 September 2016 - 11:02 AM.

 

#50 Censustaker

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    Apollo

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  • Loc: Utah

Posted 13 September 2016 - 02:15 PM

$1399? will it make me dinner, too?


 


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