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Canon 700D vs ASI 224MC on 6" SCT - test two

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#1 Tulloch

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 09:52 PM

On 29 August I was able to get out again for another side-by-side test of the Canon 700D against the ASI 224MC. The skies were absolutely clear, jetstream levels in the teens and there was no surface wind. However, for some unknown reason the seeing wasn't great but still good enough to get some comparisons.

 

Based on previous discussions with Darryl, I've taken a lighter approach with my sharpening scheme with Jupiter which has produced a less harsh effects on the final appearance on the planets. Both images were taken with my Celestron Evolution 6" SCT with 2x Barlow, processed in AS!3, sharpened and auto-colour balanced Registax with final touchups in Photoshop Elements. The first image was taken with the Canon 700D image and used 25% of 10000 frames at 20 fps and f26, the second using the ASI224 with 75% of 38639 frames at around 214 fps and f22. There was about a 20 minute gap between the two captures while I changed over cameras, re-acquired the planet and re-focused. 

 

I think there's a pretty clear "win" to the ASI224 on this occasion, the cloud bands appear to be sharper and have more of a "natural" look and feel to them, while the DSLR images never really showed much promise. Maybe there were other factors at play, changes in seeing, imperfect focus, etc.

 

Andrew

Attached Thumbnails

  • Jupiter_Tv140s_400iso_1024x688_20190829-20h08m45s-loop01_000001_pipp_1st10000_l6_ap44_Driz30 waveKokbitmore ps1sm.jpg
  • 2019-08-29-1035_0-L-Jup_pipp_l6_ap66_Driz30 waveKokbitmore ps1sm.jpg

Edited by Tulloch, 31 August 2019 - 09:59 PM.

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#2 Tulloch

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 09:58 PM

With Saturn, the results were a little less clear. Both images came out pretty well, with a slight edge in contrast to the ASI224MC, but I was happy with the results from both cameras.

 

The first image was taken with the Canon 700D image and used 50% of 3 x 5000 frames at 20 fps and f26 de-rotated in WJ, the second using the ASI224 with 50% of 22000 frames at around 124 fps and f22. There was about a 20 minute gap between the two captures while I changed over cameras, re-acquired the planet and re-focused.

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • 2019-08-29-0957_2-Saturn_3 image WJ stack ps3sm.jpg
  • 2019-08-29-0932_3-L-Sat_pipp_l6_ap42_Driz30 waveFC-A ps1sm.jpg

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#3 petert913

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 10:32 PM

Boy, that DSLR does a lot better than I would expect !


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#4 TareqPhoto

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 11:10 PM

And it is just an entry level DSLR, how about if it was a better DSLR such as a full frame camera? Or full frame mirrorless?



#5 Tulloch

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 12:05 AM

And it is just an entry level DSLR, how about if it was a better DSLR such as a full frame camera? Or full frame mirrorless?

Hi Tareq, yes, the 700D is only a middle entry level camera, but I don't think that being full frame would make a lot of difference here, as I record in 5x Liveview mode and so only the central 1024 x 688 pixels are used. The pixel size is 4.3 microns on the Canon which isn't much different from the 3.75 pixel size of the 224MC, and the quality of the recorded frames has been measured (by others) to be 99%. Not sure about mirrorless cameras though ...

 

http://www.astropix....resolution.html

https://kuvacode.com...ve-view-quality


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#6 Foc

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 12:06 AM

I look forward to a third round decider!  Best done in Singapore where it seems the seeing (when there is any) can be steady for a long time.  If temperature is a concern on th eoutcome could do a control in Ireland as well smile.gif

 

But at the moment, with a slight favoring of the planetary camera it is, as you would expect the clear winner in value for money if just imaging planets.  And as you would assume from BQs posts, the DSLR does surprisingly well so if you already have one and do not want to use a planetary camera then you can still produce excellent solar system images and also use its capabilities for larger DSOs and nightscapes.  And anticipating future investigations, full frame cameras might have better signal to noise potentially, while micro four third cameras could have easier reach at lower cost but be a bit noisier than a good APC

 

And next year or the year after, sales people will tell us technology has rendered our current optical investments obsolete!


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#7 DMach

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 02:53 AM

Very nice Andrew, you're extracting value from your 6" for sure!

 

I would say there's a clear improvement with the ASI224 image for Saturn as well actually ... better detail on the polar hexagon and the belts/banding on Saturn itself. Enjoying your new toy?  :)

 

One point of clarification: is it correct that you stacked 75% of your ASI224 frames for the Jupiter image? (Wondering whether that's a typo.)



#8 Tulloch

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 03:08 AM

I look forward to a third round decider!  Best done in Singapore where it seems the seeing (when there is any) can be steady for a long time.  If temperature is a concern on th eoutcome could do a control in Ireland as well smile.gif

 

But at the moment, with a slight favoring of the planetary camera it is, as you would expect the clear winner in value for money if just imaging planets.  And as you would assume from BQs posts, the DSLR does surprisingly well so if you already have one and do not want to use a planetary camera then you can still produce excellent solar system images and also use its capabilities for larger DSOs and nightscapes.  And anticipating future investigations, full frame cameras might have better signal to noise potentially, while micro four third cameras could have easier reach at lower cost but be a bit noisier than a good APC

 

And next year or the year after, sales people will tell us technology has rendered our current optical investments obsolete!

Thanks Foc, I think the third round decider will be when the jetstream is fast and I would expect the SLR to perform poorly. However, in good seeing conditions I don't believe I will see a huge difference between the two cameras, at least for my small scope in the backyard smile.gif. One thing I do miss is the larger frame on the DSLR so I can easily capture the moons.

 

Very nice Andrew, you're extracting value from your 6" for sure!

 

I would say there's a clear improvement with the ASI224 image for Saturn as well actually ... better detail on the polar hexagon and the belts/banding on Saturn itself. Enjoying your new toy?  smile.gif

 

One point of clarification: is it correct that you stacked 75% of your ASI224 frames for the Jupiter image? (Wondering whether that's a typo.)

Thanks Darren, it is a bit of fun smile.gif . The differences in the Saturn images might just be me changing the contrast/saturation/levels in Photoshop, but like you, I think there's a little more detail to be had in the ASI224 image.

 

Yep, 75% stacked - 25% is too low, and there was virtually no difference between the 50% and 75% stacks. I just started with the 75% and that's where it ended up. Note that the animation on my other recent post used 50%.

 

Andrew 



#9 RedLionNJ

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 10:28 AM

And it is just an entry level DSLR, how about if it was a better DSLR such as a full frame camera? Or full frame mirrorless?

That would be a totally worthless move and waste of money.

 

With a C6, you only need an area a couple hundred pixels across. If you have semi-decent tracking/guiding, there is no benefit to a larger pixel area.

 

Even with a C14, there's little point in an area more than 640 x 480.


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#10 TareqPhoto

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 11:51 AM

That would be a totally worthless move and waste of money.

 

With a C6, you only need an area a couple hundred pixels across. If you have semi-decent tracking/guiding, there is no benefit to a larger pixel area.

 

Even with a C14, there's little point in an area more than 640 x 480.

It is not a waste of money because i already have them and i use them for actual or terrestrial photography, and they are amazing, i just asked about it into astro to have an idea, that is all.



#11 Tulloch

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 06:04 PM

I think the point of this thread is that if you already have a Canon DSLR and a reasonable sized scope, you can get pretty good results from it straight out of the box and it won't cost you any extra money.

 

It will also tell you if you've caught the AA bug and want to continue without dumping the lot on ebay a few months later (although this is how I bought my 6" Celestron Evolution with lenses for just A$450 (about 1/5 retail), the person who sold it used it 3 times and was moving overseas smile.gif ).

 

Andrew


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#12 TareqPhoto

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 06:36 PM

I think the point of this thread is that if you already have a Canon DSLR and a reasonable sized scope, you can get pretty good results from it straight out of the box and it won't cost you any extra money.

 

It will also tell you if you've caught the AA bug and want to continue without dumping the lot on ebay a few months later (although this is how I bought my 6" Celestron Evolution with lenses for just A$450 (about 1/5 retail), the person who sold it used it 3 times and was moving overseas smile.gif ).

 

Andrew

I bought my 8" F5 Newtonian from eBay as it was a last piece just the time it was discontinued from manufacturer, i don't know if the person wasn't happy about it or he got it wrong or whatever, in fact i don't know if it was completely new or not because it was wrapped so beautiful and nice as if it was really brand new and not opened, he mentioned that, but it was for $200, that is not bad for a brand new 8" Newtonian anyway even if it is discontinued.

 

Since i entered astronomy i tried hard that i won't use my DSLR, because when i saw all the images i liked then i found out that they were taken from dedicated astro cameras over DSLRs, so i just saved and bought those cameras and never looked back, and that was the best decision to do, many can't buy new stuff or don't want to until they use their current gear, i don't have this kind of situations and i don't blame or force others to do the same.



#13 Foc

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Posted 02 September 2019 - 07:08 AM

I think the point of this thread is also that while our assumptions have not been seriously challenged so far, Andrew is providing some nice image comparisons of detail on a commonly used planetary camera that many of us use with a Canon DSLR that has high quality video (that has often produced good results in the hands of Andrew or BQ) when used with a 6 inch Cat on an EVO or (in the case of BQ) a 7 inch Mak.. Since I have the 6 inch Cat and the same planetary camera  I am keen to see the outcomes as while I am never short of assumptions I am often short on good evidence to support them!


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#14 BQ Octantis

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Posted 09 September 2019 - 05:32 AM

Excellent comparisons, Andrew! Clearly, in the right hands the 700D holds its own…

 

I'm curious as to the size difference in the data tomes produced by the two. One 200 second .mp4 capture out of the T3i/600D is just under 52MB…how big is the same capture out of the ASI 224MC?

 

BQ



#15 Tulloch

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Posted 09 September 2019 - 07:01 AM

Excellent comparisons, Andrew! Clearly, in the right hands the 700D holds its own…

 

I'm curious as to the size difference in the data tomes produced by the two. One 200 second .mp4 capture out of the T3i/600D is just under 52MB…how big is the same capture out of the ASI 224MC?

 

BQ

Thanks BQ, it's interesting to compare these with the previous Jupiter image test and the frame number noise study.

 

For the Saturn images, I took 15,000 individual jpg frames (@ 143 kB each) from the 700D over about 13 minutes for a total size of about 2.05 GB as jpgs. Once I turned them into 3 separate avi files @ 5000 frames each for use in the processing software, each avi was about 880 MB each, so a total of 2.5 GB. The 22,000 frame avi file from the ASI224 over 3 minutes was 1.3 GB in size.

 

This difference is mainly due to the reduced capture size, the DSLR has a fixed capture size of 1024x688 pixels, while the ASI224 was cropped at 300x200 pixels. 

 

I'm amazed you are able to record in mp4 format straight out of the camera, especially producing such small files! Or did you forget a zero on the size of the mp4 file? 

 

Andrew


Edited by Tulloch, 09 September 2019 - 05:11 PM.


#16 BQ Octantis

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Posted 10 September 2019 - 12:52 AM

I'm amazed you are able to record in mp4 format straight out of the camera, especially producing such small files! Or did you forget a zero on the size of the mp4 file?

Ha! No way! AstroDSLR v1.3 only pumps out LiveView capture in .mp4 format. And Lynkeos happily ingests them.


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#17 patindaytona

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 03:41 PM

Hi Tareq, yes, the 700D is only a middle entry level camera, but I don't think that being full frame would make a lot of difference here, as I record in 5x Liveview mode and so only the central 1024 x 688 pixels are used. The pixel size is 4.3 microns on the Canon which isn't much different from the 3.75 pixel size of the 224MC, and the quality of the recorded frames has been measured (by others) to be 99%. Not sure about mirrorless cameras though ...

 

http://www.astropix....resolution.html

https://kuvacode.com...ve-view-quality

Hello, i have a Canon 5D Mark II.

I cannot record in 5x Live View, since when i start record, it reverts back to it's original state.

If i used a software such as Backyard EOS, using the 5x it provides, does that mean my outcome video frames will become much larger (higher rez)? What I'm trying to say is, they will stay at 5x even once I begin to record?



#18 Tulloch

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 05:06 PM

Hello, i have a Canon 5D Mark II.

I cannot record in 5x Live View, since when i start record, it reverts back to it's original state.

If i used a software such as Backyard EOS, using the 5x it provides, does that mean my outcome video frames will become much larger (higher rez)? What I'm trying to say is, they will stay at 5x even once I begin to record?

Hi there, that's exactly right, Backyard EOS (BYE) is one of a few programs that will let you record the 5x live view mode from your camera. There are a few others out there, but I chose BYE for all the additional features it has.

 

On the Astropix website, it specifically mentions that the 5D Mark II will record at 1120 x 752 in 5x LiveView mode which, as strange as it may sound, is ideal for planetary imaging. With my 6" SCT at a focal length of 1500 mm, a 2x Barlow and my Canon 700D, when Jupiter was at its peak size (a few months ago), the planet's disc was about 200 pixels across on the jpgs I captured. It really works!

 

You can download a 1 month free trial from their website at the link below so you can try it out. It also has a great module for accurate focusing and has modules for DSO imaging also.

https://www.otelesco.../2-backyardeos/

 

Andrew


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#19 patindaytona

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 05:26 PM

Hi there, that's exactly right, Backyard EOS (BYE) is one of a few programs that will let you record the 5x live view mode from your camera. There are a few others out there, but I chose BYE for all the additional features it has.

 

On the Astropix website, it specifically mentions that the 5D Mark II will record at 1120 x 752 in 5x LiveView mode which, as strange as it may sound, is ideal for planetary imaging. With my 6" SCT at a focal length of 1500 mm, a 2x Barlow and my Canon 700D, when Jupiter was at its peak size (a few months ago), the planet's disc was about 200 pixels across on the jpgs I captured. It really works!

 

You can download a 1 month free trial from their website at the link below so you can try it out. It also has a great module for accurate focusing and has modules for DSO imaging also.

https://www.otelesco.../2-backyardeos/

 

Andrew

Hello,

I just came across something called Magic Lantern for DSLR cameras.In crop mode it's 1:1 pixel no pixel binding like in non crop mode. It's free! I might try that out first. If that works, i wouldn't even need to bring a laptop outdoors to monitor.  I looked at your link on free trial, but don't see a free trial.


Edited by patindaytona, 23 September 2019 - 05:27 PM.


#20 Tulloch

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 05:39 PM

Hello,

I just came across something called Magic Lantern for DSLR cameras.In crop mode it's 1:1 pixel no pixel binding like in non crop mode. It's free! I might try that out first. If that works, i wouldn't even need to bring a laptop outdoors to monitor.  I looked at your link on free trial, but don't see a free trial.

I would be careful about Magic Lantern, it is not endorsed by Canon, installing it will void your warranty and Canon may not repair it if anything goes wrong. I looked into it a while ago and decided against it.

 

As for the free trial version of BYE, it's the first option in the link (screenshot below)! FYI, I used the Classic version myself.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Andrew

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  • BYE options.JPG


#21 patindaytona

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 05:44 PM

I would be careful about Magic Lantern, it is not endorsed by Canon, installing it will void your warranty and Canon may not repair it if anything goes wrong. I looked into it a while ago and decided against it.

 

As for the free trial version of BYE, it's the first option in the link (screenshot below)! FYI, I used the Classic version myself.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Andrew

Don't know how i missed it! Thanks Tulloch!


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