Pulling the sensor out of the camera, putting it in a cooler, and then hooking it back up to the camera... is it just me, or does this seem like a lot of work compared to a simple CMOS camera? It seems like the same essential architecture, plus a bunch of camera goo you probably don't need. Maybe it's a philosophical difference, so I don't want to seem disrespectful of other's views.
And Steve, maybe your dislike for the 1600 has more to do with mono and filters than with the camera itself? In other words... can you speculate how you might have liked it if it was a one-shot-color camera instead of the mono version?
I didn't do any of the work...this is a product produced by Central DS, with, in my case, a T3i as the starting point. It's a very well done implementation that produces great results out of the box with no tinkering, fiddling, hacking, etc.
I'm not crazy about narrowband imaging in general because of the additional hardware and moving parts involved, as well as the additional processing steps involved. Purely a matter of personal preference. Kudos to the folks who are doing it.
There are also specifics about the 1600 that I dislike.
Buggy drivers, although much of this has been remedied to date
Doesn't connect to a Mac Virtual Machine (VMWare or Parallels)
SGP - Not a fault of the 1600 entirely but closely related to the drivers. SGP is the most reliable/comprehensive software out there and it's been a painful road to say the least.
Significantly smaller sensor than my cooled DSLR (CDS 600D) with an APS-C sensor
The onboard USB hub doesn't play well with other USB hubs, requiring a direct connection to my laptop
These are my dislikes. I'm not criticizing the camera or anyone's choice of the camera. Consider this a list of caveats if you're looking at a 1600 as an upgrade candidate. Also consider that Sam at ZWO is very responsive. But, this is not a perfect product and you'll likely do some tinkering for a while. If you can deal with most of these issues, then you've likely found your camera.
This will be my only post specifically about the 1600, to avoid hijacking the OP's thread.
I think I'll stick with my cooled DSLR and BackyardEOS. But...I haven't gotten around to selling my 1600 yet, so I apparently don't dislike it that much!