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DS432M vs ASI294MC comparison

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#1 jimthompson

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 12:52 PM

Hi All,

 

I thought some of you might be interested to see the results of some testing I did last week where I had two cameras running side by side:  the new Skyraider DS432M, and a ZWO ASI294MC Pro.  The 294 I have had for a couple years now, and it has become my go-to camera for any EAA because it delivers fabulous low noise images.  I was recently at a video star party in Johnstown, ON where I had an opportunity to test drive the DS432.  After the star party I borrowed the camera for a couple extra days and tested it against my 294 from my backyard in central Ottawa (Bortle 9+, limiting magnitude +3).  The test was performed on the evening of August 4th.  It was a clear Moonless night, with good transparency and seeing.  My setup was as follows:

 

1.  William Optics FLT98 @ native f/6.3, Omega Optical DGM NPB Improved filter, DS432M bin 1, gain 32 of 250, TEC -10degC

 

2.  William Optics ZS80 II @ native f/6.8, Meade O-III + Omega Optical BDRB* filters, ASI294MC bin 2, gain 400 of 570, TEC -10degC

 

*BRDB = Blue & Deep Red Blocker, a custom IR cut I had made by Omega Optical that gives dual narrowband when stacked with a commercial LP filter.

 

For all my comparison images I used stacks of 10sec sub exposures on the DS432, and 20sec sub exposures with the ASI294.  The exception was on the Cave Nebula which is very dim, so I doubled the exposure times for both cameras on that object.

 

https://flic.kr/s/aHsmFQubqa

 

I was quite impressed by the quality of the images generated by the DS432, and with the big increase in sensitivity over the ASI294.  At the star party I had the 432 side-by-side against my Xterminator-M, and even against that camera it came out with superior performance (ie. shorter time to observable image - TTOI).  The DS432 is a rather expensive camera unfortunately, but I ordered one any way based on the results of my testing. 

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.


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#2 ccs_hello

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 02:10 PM

Add the link to IMX432LLJ (monochrome 9um 12-bit image sensor) here:

https://www.cloudyni...sensors-coming/

https://www.sony-sem...J_LQJ_Flyer.pdf



#3 GaryShaw

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 03:23 PM

Hi Jim

Thanks for posting this interesting comparison. 

Assuming the 294 captured the color images, these to me seemed superior but I suspect I must be missing something about the comparison since you seemed to prefer the DS432. I’m also not clear on the different filters and gear paired up with each camera and how these variables impact any conclusions drawn from the comparison.  I suspect it’s not easy to do a true ‘apples to apples’ comparison where each camera is tested with the exact same mount and optical train. Another key factor, as you mention, is the price with the DS432, at $1500, being more than twice the cost of the 294. It’s all great food for thought and the images are all terrific. 

Cheers

Gary



#4 jimthompson

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 03:38 PM

Hi Gary,

 

Thanks for your comments.  My comment on being impressed by the DS432 was with regards to sensitivity, ie. how long it took to get a usable image.  The ASI294 was binned 2x2, had gain at 400 out of 570, and had a slightly wider band pass filter, and yet I still had to use exposure times 2x that of the DS432 to get images of similar detail and smoothness.  The DS432 meanwhile was used bin 1, with a narrow tri-band filter, and only 32 out of 250 gain.

 

The light pollution filters used are both versions of the recently popular tri-band filters.  They have a tight pass band around Hbeta/O-III and another around Halpha.  They are relatively narrow filters, between a UHC and a narrowband Halpha.  The one I used on the ASI294 has wider band passes than the one I used on the DS432, but when you pair that up with the different focal ratios for the two refractors I used, the two optical setups are pretty similar.

 

The DS432 does not cost more than twice the ASI294.  Both cameras in my comparison have thermo-electric cooling (TEC) which raises the price.  My ASI294MC Pro cost $1000USD when I bought it.

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.



#5 OleCuss

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 03:59 PM

First, I appreciate Jim doing careful work once again.  Much appreciated.

 

I'm kind of intrigued by this but not entirely sure why I would want an IMX432 sensor.  (Not that anyone has said I should).

 

It does look to me from a fairly cursory examination as though the IMX432 had faster acquisition but I'd note that with a 98mm objective it is getting substantially more signal than is the camera using the 80mm objective.  I do understand why it likely was not possible to use objectives of the same size and I don't know that all of the difference was due to the light-gathering.  And, of course, mono versus OSC may explain some of the difference as well but as noted the filtering along with low gain would have some opposite effect.

 

What I like least about the IMX432 is that I'd expect to be under-sampled even if using one of my 8" SCTs or my 12" Dobsonian.  Get into the 10" SCT and up range and under-sampling should not be an issue.

 

And I'm really rather puzzled as to why the IMX432 with those nice big pixels has only a 12-bit ADC?  I've not found the well-depth as of yet but I'm assuming it is not as deep as I'd expect with those big pixels.

 

 

So I find it to be an intriguing sensor/camera but I'm not sure exactly where it would shine in terms of performance in OAP/CAP - whatever form of AP might be preferred.

 

I suppose with a Corrected SCT like a Meade ACF or a Celestron EdgeHD used at native focal length the under-sampling won't be too bad (maybe not even noticeable) if you are using 8" aperture.  Greater aperture would mean no under-sampling but at those focal lengths tracking and atmospheric turbulence are going to be sufficiently problematic that under-sampling probably shouldn't be a concern.

 

And yeah, I kinda like Mallincam's cooling system.  I also like it that their monochrome and OSC versions have the same price!

 

So if someone can help me out on this one.  Where would an IMX432 camera be a great choice over most (maybe all) others?  (I'm not saying that it isn't a great choice for something, just that I've not figured it out.)


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#6 GaryShaw

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 04:33 PM

Hi Gary,

 

Thanks for your comments.  My comment on being impressed by the DS432 was with regards to sensitivity, ie. how long it took to get a usable image.  The ASI294 was binned 2x2, had gain at 400 out of 570, and had a slightly wider band pass filter, and yet I still had to use exposure times 2x that of the DS432 to get images of similar detail and smoothness.  The DS432 meanwhile was used bin 1, with a narrow tri-band filter, and only 32 out of 250 gain.

 

The light pollution filters used are both versions of the recently popular tri-band filters.  They have a tight pass band around Hbeta/O-III and another around Halpha.  They are relatively narrow filters, between a UHC and a narrowband Halpha.  The one I used on the ASI294 has wider band passes than the one I used on the DS432, but when you pair that up with the different focal ratios for the two refractors I used, the two optical setups are pretty similar.

 

The DS432 does not cost more than twice the ASI294.  Both cameras in my comparison have thermo-electric cooling (TEC) which raises the price.  My ASI294MC Pro cost $1000USD when I bought it.

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.

Hi Jim:

You're right on the cost. I was thinking of my 294 MC which cost just over 600 at NEAF and retails around 750-ish - hence my comment about the cost being twice for the 432. The cooled version of the 294 is 1000 or 2/3 the cost of the 432.

regards,

Gary



#7 Ptarmigan

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 06:43 PM

Interesting that an IMX432 camera has came out.

 

Mallincam DS432
https://www.mallinca...-ds432ctec.html

 

I wonder if other companies will follow suit like ZWO or Altair.

 

Looks like an interesting camera.


Edited by Ptarmigan, 12 August 2019 - 07:30 PM.


#8 A. Viegas

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 09:00 PM

Touptek calls this camera the MTR3CMOS

http://www.touptek.c...?lang=en&id=273

So it's only a matter of time before Altair and rising cam have their own versions. Not sure zwo or qhy will bother. Its extremely sensitive sensor but less than 2 megapixels is not much, this would be much more interesting if it were APS-C sized

Al
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#9 jimthompson

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 09:49 PM

Certainly a camera using the IMX432 sensor is not for everyone.  One of the selling features of the sensor from Sony is a fast refresh rate, but that is not much use for our application.  What is of interest to me is the rather large pixel size of 9 x 9 microns.  This harkens back to the "old days" of CCD sensors where bigger pixels bring in more light and thus less time to produce an image.  I also like the 17.6mm sensor size and 16:11 aspect ratio.  The discussion of under sampling is an interesting one, and for some users I am sure it is rather important to them.  For the traditional astrophotographer I imagine the desire is to maximize the spatial detail that can be captured for a particular scope, with perhaps not so much concern over how long it takes.  For me though, I could not care less about whether or not I have selected a sensor with the optimum pixel size for my scope aperture and local seeing conditions.  I have a general interest in the overall field of view, but more importantly a keen interest in how long it is going to take to get me an observable image.  In my opinion the DS432 slides into the camera category currently dominated by the Xtreme and Xterminator cameras; same sensitivity but higher resolution.

 

I would be surprised if ZWO or QHY come out with a camera using this sensor.  It moves in a direction opposite to the one they have been heading in for the past couple years...larger sensors with more pixels.  I think there is more money in selling cameras for classic imaging than for what we are doing, so our little niche application is not driving the market.  Will Altair sell a version?  I don't know, it depends on whether they can afford to carry it as a product.  It is a rather expensive camera to have in your inventory.  I guess time will tell.

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.


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#10 ccs_hello

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 10:01 PM

Interesting that an IMX432 camera has came out.

 

Mallincam DS432
https://www.mallinca...-ds432ctec.html

 

I wonder if other companies will follow suit like ZWO or Altair.

 

Looks like an interesting camera.

Page 17 stated that ZWO has an OEM version of the IMX432 imager:

https://astronomy-im...ductcatalog.pdf



#11 Ptarmigan

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 10:23 PM

Page 17 stated that ZWO has an OEM version of the IMX432 imager:

https://astronomy-im...ductcatalog.pdf

I saw it. Anything can happen.



#12 OleCuss

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 05:07 AM

Touptek calls this camera the MTR3CMOS

http://www.touptek.c...?lang=en&id=273

So it's only a matter of time before Altair and rising cam have their own versions. Not sure zwo or qhy will bother. Its extremely sensitive sensor but less than 2 megapixels is not much, this would be much more interesting if it were APS-C sized

Al

I think it might be better to suggest that the Mallincam DS432 is highly likely derived from the ToupTek unit.  I believe that Mallincam reworks the cooling system themselves and that does make the Mallincam unit a different camera because of their modification.

 

But sure, I'd be betting ToupTek makes the unit and Mallincam reworks it.  But the modification means it is unlikely Altair or RisingCam will have the same camera for sale.  One can argue whether or not the Mallincam camera would be superior or inferior as a result of the modification, but I like the idea of their modification and given similar prices and software choices I'd probably prefer the Mallincam.



#13 mclewis1

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 08:32 AM

A 432 based camera is certainly going to be a bit of niche product. The sensor is expensive (isn't used in a popular commercial camera so limited economies of scale involved) and with the larger pixels all the imaging oriented folks are going to be like OleCuss and concerned about matching up the sampling (which personally I think for real EAA use this is a big red herring, but hey that's just me). So it's never going to have the wide spread appeal that something like the 294 sensor is going to have ... but it does have a few very interesting attributes.

 

Sensitivity, it appears to be the most sensitive sensor available in a larger format (larger than say the Type 1/3, 1/2. and 2/3") at a reasonable price (in cameras under $2000 or so). The 432 is a Type 1.1" sensor (so about 17mm diagonally as mentioned above). This size fits well with some of the newer focal reducers around (for example the Starizona NiteOwl .4x SCT reducer). Larger sensor cameras (4/3, APS and up) start to limit the focal reducer options to the larger aperture slower reduction factor models. Now some of you are jumping up and down saying something like that with those big 9um pixels the shorter focal lengths aren't optimal and the sensor would be better suited to being used at longer focal lengths. True the sensor will work very well at longer focal lengths (compared to other larger but slower sensors) but as Jim's images show it's clearly not a problem at medium focal lengths either, and I believe for most folks even shorter focal lengths will produce lovely images that will please the majority of EAA observers.

 

One area where I believe this sensor will really excel is for folks in urban areas (moderate to bad LP). There with one of the tri/quad LP filters for color or just a narrow Ha filter for mono it will allow you to go a lot deeper than a traditional setup at exposure times well suited to simple Alt Az setups (10-30s). Here under sampling is less of a concern as the primary issue has been just making an object visible ... but now it appears we have something to produce nice images even under those harsh conditions.  Using an Ha filter on a mono camera with even simple inexpensive achromat telescopes opens up a lot more nights of viewing under strong moonlight, or just in bad LP ... something I think a lot more folks are coming to realize.

 

Since there isn't a mono version of the 294 sensor I think the 432 also has a has an interesting opportunity with some more specialized imagers as it's so much more sensitive than the 1600 or 183 mono sensors. Yes there is a lot of discussion about new big APS or full frame mono sensors being tested by the various camera makers, but so far at prices that are statospheric compared to the popular cameras in the $750-1500 range. 

 

So clearly not a product for everyone but perhaps something that will entice the folks who are ok with working in monochrome or just need the fastest color camera available in their budget.

 

Oh and about the 432 based Mallincam camera ... it looks like the same boards as the ToupTek camera mentioned above with Rock's new case and cooling setup he's been using in his high end 294 and 1600 cameas. So with the same electronics and different physical packaging you essentially have a hybrid ToupTek/Mallincam camera.


Edited by mclewis1, 13 August 2019 - 08:33 AM.

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#14 jimthompson

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 09:37 AM

Page 17 stated that ZWO has an OEM version of the IMX432 imager:

https://astronomy-im...ductcatalog.pdf

Well how about that...good catch ccs_hello!  Okay then, we will have to wait and see if ZWO eventually package their OEM camera into their astro-camera case and sell it commercially.

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.



#15 OleCuss

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 09:53 AM

I'm really not sure what "sensitivity" means to us.  I'm more interested in SNR and I don't think Sony has done an SNR1 rating of the IMX432 sensor.

 

When I can't find an SNR1 rating I am then as a second best, interested in seeing the QE and the noise levels.  I can't find the QE for this sensor and I can't find the noise levels either (my impression is that most sensors with a global shutter are a little noisy).  Jim's image looks pretty good so I'm going to assume the SNR is good but a lot of things can go into how all this works out.

 

The best guess I've seen is that the Night Owl's image circle without significant vignetting is about 9mm.  This might suggest that the IMX432 is a bit large for the Night Owl unless you are going to do calibration frames.  But if you are planning to do calibration frames you are getting thrown back into the spectrum of OAPers who are likely to care about sampling and such.

 

There is also a dynamic range issue which really and truly puzzles me.  With 9 micron pixels the thing should have a massive well depth and I'd be hoping for at least a 14-bit ADC.  But instead you get a 12-Bit ADC like you get with the far smaller pixels of the IMX183.  I really don't like this aspect for OAP as I want to view the bright stuff along with the dim stuff without saturating and this will make that a bit harder.

 

Still, with the IMX432 you have 9 micron pixels.  If you take the IMX294 and bin it 2x2 you end up with a software binning yielding a pseudo-pixel-size of 9.26 microns.  So the binned IMX294 has slightly worse under-sampling but better dynamic range.

 

As I've been thinking about this I'm getting to think that I'd really like to see the mono IMX432 compared to a binned (2x2) mono MN34230.  You'd have a mono a mono competition between cameras with fairly steep prices, they'd both have the 12-bit ADC, and the binned MN34230 would have effective pixels of 7.6 microns if binned 2x2.

 

You can use an ROI to reduce the effective sensor size of the MN34230 so the smaller DS432 doesn't really have an advantage based on smallness.

 

And no, I do not expect anyone to do a side-by-side comparison of the IMX432 and the MN34230 any time soon.  That's a lot of time and money with questionable benefit for most of us.  I'm just going to appreciate what Jim did for us in showing us what the camera can do and explaining how he sees its role.

 

Having more options is almost always a good thing!


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#16 Ptarmigan

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 07:32 PM

Video of DS432c in use.

https://www.youtube....h?v=pgEywDdlgFU


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#17 OleCuss

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 08:39 PM

I skipped through the video and Jack was putting up some enjoyable images.  I don't think that sensor will ever be something I want, but it can do some pretty good stuff in a short period of time.

 

 

I did a little more searching about the reason why the sensor has 9 micron pixels but still has only a 12-bit ADC.  I didn't find an explicit answer but there is a hint at the answer:

 

At this link:  https://www.framos.c...-global-shutter if you go about 1/4 of the way down you find a table with some specifications on the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd generation Pregius sensors.

 

To me the chart suggests (as does the prior verbiage) that the IMX432 may be doing a hardwired hardware binning (2x2) of some sort.  I've also seen it claimed that the sensor is using a CCD architecture.  So they may be using another sensor (maybe the IMX428?) with 4.5 micron pixels, binning the thing with effectively no other changes to the architecture.  The IMX420 & IMX428 have the 12-Bit ADC so the IMX432 has the 12-bit ADC despite (assuming real hardware binning) having a well depth which may be four times that of the IMX420.

 

So you end up with an IMX432 well depth which is claimed to be (by Framos) at 100K instead of the 25K of the IMX420 and a gain of 86 dB to what I think may be 76 dB for the IMX420.  But the ADC will not allow full exploitation of its binned 4.5 micron pixels.

 

So according to Framos the IMX432 doesn't really have 9 micron pixels, it has binned 4.5 micron pixels.  I don't think it is dishonest to call it a 9 micron sensor because it can't function in any other mode, but it does sort of explain why the sensor has only a 12-bit ADC.

 

The base sensor appears to me to really be the IMX420.  This sensor is apparently designed for high frame rate industrial use.  Running at 7 MP with the system set for a 10-bit output it is supposed to be able to send 172 frames per second. . .  We aren't going to handle that kind of data with the USB3 interface.

 

So they slowed down the frame rate for the IMX428 which will put out 51 frames per second which a USB 3 interface may be able to handle.

 

Then I'm guessing they decided that they could hardwire/hardware bin the output of the IMX428 and get a faster frame rate albeit with less resolution.  There are likely some industrial applications which just don't need the 7MP resolution potential so you make the IMX432 which uses binning to reduce the number of pixels to just 1/4 that of the IMX420 and IMX428 and you get a much faster frame rather than the IMX428 over USB 3.

 

I'm betting that they decided not to mess with a 14-bit (or maybe better?) ADC for the IMX432 for two reasons:

1.  They are trying for a high-speed frame rate over a USB 3 cable and 14-bits would make it a much slower frame rate sensor.  So there isn't a very good niche for a 14-bit IMX432 in their intended market.

2.  It'd cost them a lot of money and time in changing their systems from producing the IMX420 with a 12-bit ADC to making the IMX432 with a 14-bit ADC.

 

And it would not surprise me at all if the IMX420, IMX428, and IMX432 have exactly the same architecture and silicon.  They just change a few settings in the firmware and it is considered a different sensor.

 

Anyway, I'm betting that is how this is working.  It's disappointing because I think we'd all really, really like to see what a 14-bit IMX432 could do.

 

 

But it might be worth remembering that if the IMX432 can do this, the IMX428 may be able to do what most of us want for OAP (sub-exposures of a few seconds rather than dozens of subs per second) and do it at 7 MP.  And since there is a chance the IMX432 is using the same kind of clunky/noisy binning used with the IMX071 sensor (if you mistakenly turn it on), the IMX428 may actually give you a better SNR than does the IMX432!

 

So it is possible that you could bin the IMX428 in software and get a better SNR than you get with the IMX432 and you still have the same dynamic range.  I hope Mallincam will look at using the ToupTek IMX428.  Since they've already got the IMX432 working with their modifications I'd think it would be pretty easy for them to do the same with the IMX428 camera and they'd likely have a camera which would interest a lot of us who aren't going to want the IMX432 camera.  I'm thinking that a modified ToupTek IMX428 camera would be a great replacement for the Mallincam Universe in their line-up.

 

Edit:

I also came up with an answer to my wondering just where the DS432 might fit for a future use which I would appreciate.  The thing is actually able to do some interesting work and since it actually doesn't put out a whole lot of data when run at several second exposures, you could potentially use a larger sensor than something like the IMX224 with what is probably a pretty good SNR and you might be able to actually do your processing on a faster smartphone or tablet.  So you could match a larger image circle with a rather long focal length and be using a light footprint processing system for an experience which might look a little (but only a little) like what I think they are doing with the Stellina.  But someone will have to develop the software for that purpose.


Edited by OleCuss, 14 August 2019 - 08:49 PM.

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#18 Alien Observatory

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 09:01 PM

Hmmmm....Pat Utah :)

 

https://bbs.astronom...opic.php?t=7287



#19 alphatripleplus

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 10:03 PM

It seems that Explore Scientific just released the colour version of  an IMX432 camera for 1,490 Euros with similar specs.


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#20 mclewis1

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 06:49 AM

It seems that Explore Scientific just released the colour version of  an IMX432 camera for 1,490 Euros with similar specs.

That's the rebranded ToupTek camera, but at a USD equivalent of $1660 it's a bit rich for those in Europe. Still interesting that Explore has jumped on this camera under their own brand as they usually have been carrying other vendor's cameras (ZWO, QHY, etc.).


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#21 Ptarmigan

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:45 PM

I wonder how much the ToupTek IMX432 camera costs.



#22 mclewis1

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 07:38 AM

ToupTek doesn't normally publish prices or sell directly to end users. One place a ToupTek camera will usually show up available for end user purchase is in the RisingCam store on AliExpress. They don't automatically offer everything that ToupTek can produce, rather they tend to make the more popular versions available (letting others find out if there's a market). So far the 432 based camera has not shown up in the RisingCam online store using the model # ATR3CMOS01700KPA which was listed on the Explore Scientific website for their version of the color camera.

 

I'm not sure about pricing. Normally Rock's Mallincam branded cameras will be just slightly higher than the equivalent (but not identical) unbranded ToupTek models from RisingCam, but with the unique cooling configuration he's now offering it could sometimes even be a bit more. The interesting thing is that Bessler/Explore Scientific is offering the full ToupTek cooled version at an even higher price than the Mallincam (aproximately $1700 delivered in the US at today's Euro conversion rate ... but there also could be some mark up for the European market in that price). We just won't know for sure what the camera will be sold for in North America until someone publishes a USD list price.

 

Some of the other possible sources of the ToupTek camara could be ...

 

Orion

Orange County Telescope

Meade

Altair Astro

 

 

Perhaps if the IMX428 sensor ends up a bit more popular than the 432 model we might see other cameras based on that sensor at slightly lower prices (we can only hope fingerscrossed.gif )


Edited by mclewis1, 16 August 2019 - 07:39 AM.

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#23 Astrojedi

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Posted 18 August 2019 - 04:52 PM

Hi All,

 

I thought some of you might be interested to see the results of some testing I did last week where I had two cameras running side by side:  the new Skyraider DS432M, and a ZWO ASI294MC Pro.  The 294 I have had for a couple years now, and it has become my go-to camera for any EAA because it delivers fabulous low noise images.  I was recently at a video star party in Johnstown, ON where I had an opportunity to test drive the DS432.  After the star party I borrowed the camera for a couple extra days and tested it against my 294 from my backyard in central Ottawa (Bortle 9+, limiting magnitude +3).  The test was performed on the evening of August 4th.  It was a clear Moonless night, with good transparency and seeing.  My setup was as follows:

 

1.  William Optics FLT98 @ native f/6.3, Omega Optical DGM NPB Improved filter, DS432M bin 1, gain 32 of 250, TEC -10degC

 

2.  William Optics ZS80 II @ native f/6.8, Meade O-III + Omega Optical BDRB* filters, ASI294MC bin 2, gain 400 of 570, TEC -10degC

 

*BRDB = Blue & Deep Red Blocker, a custom IR cut I had made by Omega Optical that gives dual narrowband when stacked with a commercial LP filter.

 

For all my comparison images I used stacks of 10sec sub exposures on the DS432, and 20sec sub exposures with the ASI294.  The exception was on the Cave Nebula which is very dim, so I doubled the exposure times for both cameras on that object.

 

https://flic.kr/s/aHsmFQubqa

 

I was quite impressed by the quality of the images generated by the DS432, and with the big increase in sensitivity over the ASI294.  At the star party I had the 432 side-by-side against my Xterminator-M, and even against that camera it came out with superior performance (ie. shorter time to observable image - TTOI).  The DS432 is a rather expensive camera unfortunately, but I ordered one any way based on the results of my testing. 

 

Cheers,

 

Jim T.

Thanks for the testing.

 

The 432 does look promising but the difference to the 294 is not as much as I would expect. In fact imo the 294 is doing really well in this comparison and the difference in exposure time is really small. I prefer the images from the 294 in all of your captures. A couple of points:

 

1. You cannot really compare a mono camera to a color camera. You will have a 30-40% QE loss even for the same sensor just because of the Bayer Matrix before factoring in other factors. Are you able to obtain the color version to compare to the 294MC?

 

2. Would also be very helpful if you could put the cameras on the same aperture scope and same focal ratio for the comparison to be meaningful.

 

Regarding the 428 one thing that I found disappointing is that the sensor has pretty high read noise in HCG mode (relative to CMOS sensors). I have a feeling it may not be a true 9 micron pixel.  



#24 OleCuss

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Posted 18 August 2019 - 05:29 PM

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 I have a feeling it may not be a true 9 micron pixel. 

 

It really isn't a 9µm pixel sensor.  They are binning the 4.5µm pixels you find in the IMX420 and IMX428.  Binning in hardware in some manner, there is a suggestion that they are using some CCD architecture so it could be true hardware binning or they may just be using the kind of firmware you find in the IMX071.

 

Effectively it's an IMX428 which is permanently binned 2x2.


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#25 jimthompson

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Posted 18 August 2019 - 06:33 PM

Thanks for the testing.

 

The 432 does look promising but the difference to the 294 is not as much as I would expect. In fact imo the 294 is doing really well in this comparison and the difference in exposure time is really small. I prefer the images from the 294 in all of your captures. A couple of points:

 

1. You cannot really compare a mono camera to a color camera. You will have a 30-40% QE loss even for the same sensor just because of the Bayer Matrix before factoring in other factors. Are you able to obtain the color version to compare to the 294MC?

 

2. Would also be very helpful if you could put the cameras on the same aperture scope and same focal ratio for the comparison to be meaningful.

 

Regarding the 428 one thing that I found disappointing is that the sensor has pretty high read noise in HCG mode (relative to CMOS sensors). I have a feeling it may not be a true 9 micron pixel.  

Hi Astrojedi,

 

Agreed, my comparison results are more for discussion than for any real sort of analysis.  I had a lucky opportunity to try the camera out so it made sense to put it against what is my current workhorse camera, the ASI294MC Pro.  The comparison was mostly for my benefit, to show that it is capable of producing images of similar quality to my ASI294 in similar or less time.  I have an ASI183MM Pro that I purchased for monochrome deepsky and for solar system imaging.  I also have an ASI290MM that I also use for both deepsky and solar system imaging.  To be honest I have not been happy with either camera for deepsky, but love them both for solar system imaging.  Thus my interest in a better monochrome deepsky camera.  The DS432M seems to be more like what I want for deepsky.  If I have an opportunity to test a colour camera, I will let everyone know.  However that is not likely to happen for a while as these cameras are only available in small batches from Mallincam as the sensors are not all that readily available yet.

 

Best Regards,

 

Jim T.


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