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ZWO ASI071MC-Cool Beta Test

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#51 Jon Rista

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 02:54 PM

tolgagumus,

 

I haven't noticed any discussion of amp glow.  Have you seen any with this camera?

 

-Dan

Dan, I actually noted what I saw with some of the data I've processed in the other thread:

 

http://www.cloudynig...ming/?p=7497646

 

I cannot really tell if there is amp glow at all, and if there is, it is extremely, extremely small in maybe one location along the bottom edge. 



#52 Alfredo Beltran

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 03:07 PM

Sony did not publish this information. Anything you see out there are all calculated based on measured data. 

Fair enough. I just thought there was a QE curve as for some other Sony CCD sensors. Hopefully it will be available in the future.



#53 telfish

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 05:03 PM

Tolga, I assume that this being a OSC camera that the front window is UV/IR blocking. Can you confirm that

 

Thanks



#54 tolgagumus

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 05:09 PM

Tolga, I assume that this being a OSC camera that the front window is UV/IR blocking. Can you confirm that

Thanks


I asked Sam the same question when I first got it. He said yes but I don't know exactly where the cut off is.

#55 tolgagumus

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Posted 29 October 2016 - 08:46 PM

I received an official answer from Sony

 

Hi Tolga,

My name is Yoshida from Sony Electronics, Inc., USA. 
Thank you for your contact.
I am in charge of imaging device sales and marketing in North America for Industrial / Professional Camera Applications.

We do not disclose sensor’s QE data.



#56 rkayakr

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 03:04 PM

Highpoint has a page up for ordering

 

http://www.highpoint...a-asi071mc-cool



#57 telfish

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 04:03 PM

Highpoint has a page up for ordering

 

http://www.highpoint...a-asi071mc-cool

Interesting, looks like the lump on the side which was the window heater has gone and I guess that is now inside the camera.



#58 Midnight Dan

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 03:53 PM

The ZWO site now has the camera for sale as well:

https://astronomy-im.../asi071mc-cool/

 

I just placed my order!  :whee:

 

They said the introductory price of $1280 will be available till the end of this year.  It will then go up to $1480.  During purchasing, it comes up as "backordered" so it's apparently not quite available yet.

 

-Dan



#59 BigBanger

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 05:24 PM

Hi Dan,

 

I appreciate you giving us an advanced look at this new camera.

 

I find the specs on this camera very desirable - Respectable FW depth, low read noise, 14-bit A/D conversion, larger pixel size than most previous ZWO cameras.

 

My one concern - Some of the ZWO cameras (through my experience the ASI174MC and to a lesser extent the ASI1600MM) produce horizontal banding artifacts, which become quite noticeable after brightening the darker pixels through histogram curve adjustments.

 

An image I took of the Horsehead last year with my ASI174MC (see attached) displays the horizontal bands of which I speak.

 

Have you noticed them on this camera? Related to this, would you share, though file attachment on this thread, one of the raw files created with this camera so that some of us can put it through our development steps, looking for these artifacts?

 

Thank you, Avi

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • ZWOASI174MC-Banding.jpg


#60 Jared

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 07:33 PM

Tolga,

 

Looks like a great camera.  I'm curious, and I don't mean to critique where you weren't asking for criticism, but there is a lot more scatter around bright stars in all three sample images than I would have expected.  Is that a functioning of processing choices/screen stretches?  Something about the Vixen 100mm?  Something about the camera?  I'm just curious what your experience has been with your setup.


Edited by Jared, 23 November 2016 - 07:34 PM.

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#61 tolgagumus

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 08:15 PM

Tolga,

 

Looks like a great camera.  I'm curious, and I don't mean to critique where you weren't asking for criticism, but there is a lot more scatter around bright stars in all three sample images than I would have expected.  Is that a functioning of processing choices/screen stretches?  Something about the Vixen 100mm?  Something about the camera?  I'm just curious what your experience has been with your setup.

Hi Jared,

 

It's nobodies fault but mine. I used to use a double mask to stretch and that caused the halos. 


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#62 TimN

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 08:29 PM

Looks interesting. I got a D5100 soon after they were released and used it for a few years until I got the ASI-1600mm-c this summer. I really love my D5100 and it uses the same Sony Exmor Sensor as the ASI071MC-Cool. I started using it at unity - somewhere around 800iso - but once I realized it was isoless I dropped down to 400 and 200 iso. For me 10 minutes was a good sweet spot for DSO's. I really think this camera will do very well.

Edited by TimN, 23 November 2016 - 08:34 PM.


#63 jfrech14

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 09:34 PM

 

 

 

Nice review!

Why was the file size a con for you?


More pixels the more processing time. (registration, integration, everything just takes longer especially with a lot of frames)

Exactly. Each file is 32 MBs x 100 frames +calibration +registration +debayer you are looking at multiple gigabytes

 

To expound upon this a bit. The original FITS files from the camera are 32MB each. However if you process them with PI, and save as 32-bit float, each calibrated file becomes 64MB each. Once you demosaic, you end up with three full color channels in each FIT file, the size skyrockets to over 190MB per demosaiced FIT file (basically 64*3)!  If you then run SubframeSelector and and Registration, each of those produce another set of 190MB files.

 

This was similar to the problem I had with my 5D III. My 5D III demosaiced files were around 240MB each, and I would have several sets produced throughout the pre-processing flow. I've been backing up my data for two months now. I literally have terrabytes of data from my 5D III (and a bit from my ASI1600, although not even a small fraction of what I have from the 5D III) backed up onto BluRay discs. 

 

The usage patterns for the camera Tolga is testing might be different than with the ASI1600, though. Being OSC, 14-bit and apparently not having any amp glow, it should be possible to use it at lower gain settings with longer exposures. Should help keep disk space usage down. However, expect for there to be some large files, and plan to have plenty of disk space on hand for processing. 

 

Sounds like you need an astro server with all that data haha ;) Yeah... going from the 8300 and STL1301 to the 1600 was a big step in processing power and storage. I couldn't imagine doing it with color images. Sounds like a great camera if only it were mono. I am sure it'll only be a matter of time someone takes the matrix off and voids their warranty haha.



#64 Herra Kuulapaa

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:05 AM

I really love my D5100 ... I started using it at unity - somewhere around 800iso - but once I realized it was isoless I dropped down to 400 and 200 iso.

Just to correct that the unity gain of D5100 is around ISO250. I'd recall 0.95e-/ADU.

ISO400 is around 0.6e-/ADU, which gives 2.6e- read noise.



#65 Merk

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 01:29 PM

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter



#66 Peter in Reno

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 01:50 PM

Astronomy is a very tiny market. Cost will always be higher. It has nothing to do with how much it cost to make the camera, it has to do with number of people buying the cameras. There are significantly a lot more people buying DSLR cameras than astro cameras. If astro cameras cost as much as DSLR cameras, the astro camera business will go out of business due to small market.

 

Cooled cameras will always be better than uncooled cameras for long exposure times of at least 30 seconds. Cooled cameras significantly reduces dark noise.

 

Peter


Edited by Peter in Reno, 30 November 2016 - 01:55 PM.

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#67 Jon Rista

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:07 PM

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter

When you factor in the time to research and develop the product, as well as probably CNC machining, I highly doubt it costs only $200 to make the camera. These guys have to recoup their total costs, including R&D, and when so few people overall buy the product, that means it has to cost more. 

 

That said, for a "CCD-like" monochrome camera (it is actually CMOS, BTW), you won't find a better price anywhere. Look at the cost of actual CCD cameras, especially those from QSI, FLI, SBIG, etc. $3500, $4000, $4500, $8000, $10000. That makes $1280 is an awesome price!


Edited by Jon Rista, 30 November 2016 - 02:24 PM.

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#68 Merk

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:31 PM

 

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter

When you factor in the time to research and develop the product, as well as probably CNC machining, I highly doubt it costs $200 to make the camera. These guys have to recoup their total costs, including R&D, and when so few people overall buy the product, that means it has to cost more. 

 

That said, for a "CCD-like" monochrome camera (it is actually CMOS, BTW), you won't find a better price anywhere. Look at the cost of actual CCD cameras, especially those from QSI, FLI, SBIG, etc. $3500, $4000, $4500, $8000, $10000. That makes $1280 is an awesome price!

 

It is not a mono camera, and the product (I own asi 224) feels cheap compared to a similar value dslr.

 

Maybe for a planetary camera or a mono camera they have to make some search and development, but for a color camera I doubt that it is so difficult.

Sony 071 had low noise, good pixel size, so not much thought in that. Put it on a motherboard and a cooler and you have the camera (you don't even  have to put any filters in front  of the sensor

or have dust vibration removal mechanism), I don't think is something drastically new form the previous asi cameras (so the development already exists).

 

Also as I said everyone is overpriced ,other companies more than ASI, and not only the cameras but telescopes mounts etc.

I am talking about the ASI071 because I know that it has the sensor of the nikon d5100  and I bet it will feel cheap compared to the nikon d5100. 



#69 BigBanger

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:47 PM

I'm sensing some denial by the DLSR users... Features like regulated cooling, integrated USB port so as to communicated with a filter wheel (in the case of a mono camera) or guide camera and other features leave DSLR camera with the same chip in the dust. As for the price, it's not just about the cost of the parts, it's the cost of running a business; R&D, payroll, rent, utilities, etc. etc. that sells to a tiny population of customers..... Let them have a sizeable profit margin.


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#70 telfish

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:51 PM

 

 

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter

When you factor in the time to research and develop the product, as well as probably CNC machining, I highly doubt it costs $200 to make the camera. These guys have to recoup their total costs, including R&D, and when so few people overall buy the product, that means it has to cost more. 

 

That said, for a "CCD-like" monochrome camera (it is actually CMOS, BTW), you won't find a better price anywhere. Look at the cost of actual CCD cameras, especially those from QSI, FLI, SBIG, etc. $3500, $4000, $4500, $8000, $10000. That makes $1280 is an awesome price!

 

It is not a mono camera, and the product (I own asi 224) feels cheap compared to a similar value dslr.

 

Maybe for a planetary camera or a mono camera they have to make some search and development, but for a color camera I doubt that it is so difficult.

Sony 071 had low noise, good pixel size, so not much thought in that. Put it on a motherboard and a cooler and you have the camera (you don't even  have to put any filters in front  of the sensor

or have dust vibration removal mechanism), I don't think is something drastically new form the previous asi cameras (so the development already exists).

 

Also as I said everyone is overpriced ,other companies more than ASI, and not only the cameras but telescopes mounts etc.

I am talking about the ASI071 because I know that it has the sensor of the nikon d5100  and I bet it will feel cheap compared to the nikon d5100. 

 

I sense that you don't quite understand the concept of economy of scale. Canon and Nikon sell hundreds of thousands, maybe millions of their products. That enables them to do long production runs in very automated environment and buy components very cheaply.

 

An Astro camera manufacturer may sell a few hundred or a few thousand units. and have to pay top dollar for their components.

 

You are comparing apples to water melons.


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#71 Jon Rista

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:55 PM

 

 

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter

When you factor in the time to research and develop the product, as well as probably CNC machining, I highly doubt it costs $200 to make the camera. These guys have to recoup their total costs, including R&D, and when so few people overall buy the product, that means it has to cost more. 

 

That said, for a "CCD-like" monochrome camera (it is actually CMOS, BTW), you won't find a better price anywhere. Look at the cost of actual CCD cameras, especially those from QSI, FLI, SBIG, etc. $3500, $4000, $4500, $8000, $10000. That makes $1280 is an awesome price!

 

It is not a mono camera, and the product (I own asi 224) feels cheap compared to a similar value dslr.

 

Maybe for a planetary camera or a mono camera they have to make some search and development, but for a color camera I doubt that it is so difficult.

Sony 071 had low noise, good pixel size, so not much thought in that. Put it on a motherboard and a cooler and you have the camera (you don't even  have to put any filters in front  of the sensor

or have dust vibration removal mechanism), I don't think is something drastically new form the previous asi cameras (so the development already exists).

 

Also as I said everyone is overpriced ,other companies more than ASI, and not only the cameras but telescopes mounts etc.

I am talking about the ASI071 because I know that it has the sensor of the nikon d5100  and I bet it will feel cheap compared to the nikon d5100. 

 

I thought you were referring to the ASI1600, given the $1280 price. The ASI071 is actually $1480 normal price (it might be on sale right now.) Again, though, there is a lot of R&D that goes into a camera like this, and R&D is clearly ongoing. I've got an ASI071 in hand right now, and it is very solidly built. It is certainly lighter than my 5D III, no question, but that does not mean it is cheap. All things considered, I would much rather have a light weight camera than a heavy hunk of metal hanging off my lens or scope. Far fewer issues to deal with there, and you can pair a lighter camera with a smaller focuser, and save some money there as well.

 

There are new innovations in the ASI071 that are actually very nice. The design for handling desiccant is so much nicer than in previous incarnations of ASI cameras, using a plug mechanism in addition to an embedded tablet inside the sensor cavity (and they also have a small little capsule that you can fill with desiccant and screw into the side of the camera.) The 071 also has a built-in tilt adjuster, which is actually really awesome. For someone who intends to use the camera on a large lens (such as myself), the camera hangs off the lens and you attach the lens to the mount instead. Even though these cameras are lighter weight, the weight of the camera can still introduce some tilt. ZWO has added a way to manage that, which is awesome. 

 

There is another critical thing about these cameras that DSLRs do not have: Cooling! This camera can tool to -40 C below ambient. With this camera in particular, at -20C there is barely a hint of hot pixels, no glows that I've seen (although I still need to do more rigorous testing), and compared to a room temperature DSLR, the IQ is amazing. Cooling is a feature that is integrated into these cameras an works very well. An IR modded D5100 won't have that.

 

I think there is a lot going for the ASI071, more than enough to give it an edge over any stock, astro, or IR modded DSLR on the market. The only things that might compare are cold finger modded DSLRs...however, those are pretty extreme, warranty-voiding modifications, and not particularly common. 


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#72 Midnight Dan

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 04:57 PM

 The only things that might compare are cold finger modded DSLRs

 

Actually, I own a cold finger modded DSLR and I just placed my pre-order for an ASI 071. :grin:  

 

Don't get me wrong, the cold finger has worked out really well for me and was a huge improvement over an uncooled DSLR.  But the cooling is just not as efficient as a purpose-built cooled astro camera.  The EXIF temperature reported is always quite a bit higher than my set-point for the cold finger, even though the cold finger temperature probe is inside the camera, fairly close to the chip.  

 

Then there's the issue of data cleanliness.  I'm told by some here on CN that DSLRs do apply algorithms to the data, even when you're shooting raw.  An astro camera provides as clean as possible data from the sensor to the file.

 

And there's other ancillary issues.  The shutter in a DSLR has a limited lifetime - none to worry about in an astro camera.  A DSLR takes up more back focus, 55mm vs the 17mm of the ASI071.  And with a fast scope, you can get mirror shadowing with some DSLRs.  Plus, there's the added niceties of the 071 like the built in hub, tilt adjuster, desiccant, heated front window, etc.

 

Even though I have a cooled, full-spectrum modded DSLR, there's a lot to like in this camera.  In fact, the only reason I went to the trouble of modding my own camera was that something like this was not available a couple years ago.  To get a camera with a decent APS-C sized chip, reasonable pixel size, cooling, etc., you'd have had to spend over $4k before this camera.  A self-modded DSLR was the only game in town for us mere mortals, unless you were willing to live with a significantly lesser chip.

 

So, even though this is similar in chip characteristics to what I already have, I'm looking forward to the serious cooling available in the summer months, the clean data path, and all the other convenience features the 071 has to offer.

 

-Dan


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#73 Jon Rista

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 05:02 PM

I am pretty impressed with the ASI071 so far. I have only plugged it in once and fiddled with some dark frames. I haven't had the chance to point it at the sky yet. But it is really clean. And the design of the body with the tilt adjustment is pretty cool. They include a little allen wrench, and one of the ends has a little ball-tip on it for adjusting the tilt. That turns out to be REALLY handy, because you want the lens attached while you adjust, and if you are pointed at the sky at the time, you can get realtime feedback. But some lenses are a little fat, and being able to tilt the wrench and still adjust the small tilt adjustment screws is extremely handy. That is definitely something you cannot do with a DSLR. ;)

 

Oh, FTR, I measured the backfocus. I purchased the new ZWO EF adapter for the ASI1600, which has a 26.5mm backfocus. IF you want to use this camera with a camera lens, that is the adapter you want. Because the backfocus of the camera is still 17.5mm, and with the new ASI1600 EF adapter, it gets you exactly to 44mm with just the one adapter, which is really nice.


Edited by Jon Rista, 30 November 2016 - 05:07 PM.


#74 jfrech14

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 05:52 PM

 

 

Yeyyy another overpriced ccd. I just don't get it why everything is overpriced for astronomy...

 

Propably the cost of making the ASI 071 is around 200 dollars max .100 dollars for the sensor and another 100 for casing and cooling

 

( You can find a nikon d5100 for 150 dollars and it has flip screen and other features)

 

So why is it selling for 1280 dollars.People want to make 1000 dollar profit from a thing that costs 200 dollars....

 

I am not only saying this about ASI products but everyone that sells astronomy products.

 

Astronomy is nice but I would like it more if people stop taking advantage of it.

 

 

P.S. I am buying my self a nikon d5100 and removing the ir filter

When you factor in the time to research and develop the product, as well as probably CNC machining, I highly doubt it costs $200 to make the camera. These guys have to recoup their total costs, including R&D, and when so few people overall buy the product, that means it has to cost more. 

 

That said, for a "CCD-like" monochrome camera (it is actually CMOS, BTW), you won't find a better price anywhere. Look at the cost of actual CCD cameras, especially those from QSI, FLI, SBIG, etc. $3500, $4000, $4500, $8000, $10000. That makes $1280 is an awesome price!

 

It is not a mono camera, and the product (I own asi 224) feels cheap compared to a similar value dslr.

 

Maybe for a planetary camera or a mono camera they have to make some search and development, but for a color camera I doubt that it is so difficult.

Sony 071 had low noise, good pixel size, so not much thought in that. Put it on a motherboard and a cooler and you have the camera (you don't even  have to put any filters in front  of the sensor

or have dust vibration removal mechanism), I don't think is something drastically new form the previous asi cameras (so the development already exists).

 

Also as I said everyone is overpriced ,other companies more than ASI, and not only the cameras but telescopes mounts etc.

I am talking about the ASI071 because I know that it has the sensor of the nikon d5100  and I bet it will feel cheap compared to the nikon d5100. 

 

My first real astro camera was the D5100 years ago and I am not sure why you think CNC machined camera bodies such as this feel cheap compared to PLASTIC DSLR bodies. I loved the D5100 but they just don't compared to regulated cooling and the electronics that go into astro cameras. Sure, this is a long way from SBIG or QSI, but if it is indeed so cheap and easy I suspect you will make a killing in the market when you start selling your version ;)  Also, remember that since you said you are taking the IR filter off.. if you mess it up you have nobody to turn to. These come with all of that already dealt with. So that is also another big thing on top of cooling and all the other goodies. I am glad they are stepping up their desiccant game because I have seen my 1600mm-c frost over a few times.



#75 Jon Rista

Jon Rista

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 05:36 PM

I asked Sam if they could add a new feature to the ASCOM driver a few days ago. I'll tell ya what, those guys are on the ball over there:

 

DatjQ9w.jpg


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