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Let's discuss QHY600M/C camera

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#1 Peter in Reno

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 09:10 PM

Hello,

 

I finally received QHY600M camera today. I also received CFW3-M filter wheel and OAG-M as well as Chroma 50mm LRGB filters.

 

I connected everything to my TEC 160FL and was successfully connected using Voyager and Nebulosity. At first Nebulosity refused to connect so I copied qhyccd.dll (32 bit version) from latest QHY SDK to Nebulosity location and successfully got it connected. Voyager works with either ASCOM or Voyager's specific QHY SDK (native driver).

 

I started playing with it at gain of 0 and offset of 50 using QHY's mode 0 by taking T-shirt flats with L and Red filters. I was surprised the exposure times were significantly longer than expected. For the amount of sunlight I was using, the exposure time to reach peak at halfway point of histogram was 1 second for L filter and 10 seconds for red filter.

 

I repeated the T-shirt flat test using gain of 26 and offset of 50 and the exposure time for Red filter was significantly reduced to about 1 second.

 

So I'm not sure which gain to use for LRGB imaging. I am concerned that the exposure times for imaging fairly bright DSO like M27, M51, M42, etc. could take as long as 10 minutes for gain of 0.

 

I am using USB 2.0 setup and I was very surprised the download speed was 7 seconds at bin 1x1 and the file size was around 120Mbytes and the USB traffic was set to 0. That's faster than my old QSI 660wsg which took about 11 seconds to download for about 12MBytes file. I think I'll stick to USB 2.0 setup for now.

 

Question #1: Why doesn't the camera have power LED? How can I tell if the power is running to the camera? I am deaf so I cannot hear the fan running.

 

Question #2: How do I lower or raise the OAG-M prism stalk without removing the filter wheel. I can see how to loosen the stalk but I have to grab the prism to lower/raise the stalk. So far I have to remove the filter wheel from the imaging train to get access to the prism in order to raise/lower the prism stalk. I am aware of the thumbscrew to loosen/tighten the prism stalk.

 

More testing to do but I'm sure I will have little to no issues. This is one big camera.

 

For those who currently own or planning to get QHY600M/C, please feel free to discuss tips, problems, and solutions here.

 

Thanks,

Peter

 

Here are some screenshots of my new equipment.

 

IMG_1407_Compressed.JPG

 

IMG_1411_Compressed.JPG

 

Cool camera bubble leveler from Buckeyestargazer.net. This will allow me to accurately frame the camera almost exactly the same from night to night.

 

IMG_1408_Compressed.JPG

 

IMG_1412_Compressed.JPG

 


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#2 EspacioProfundo

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 12:51 AM

Using gain 0 I think it's not the best idea, use gain 26 to take advantage of the low read noise in mode 0. I've used it with gain 56 in mode 1 (ultra high full well mode) with very good results.

 

1) Touch the camera, you'll feel the air moving.

 

2) As far as I remember, the blue ring is a helical focuser, turn it to see if it changes.

 

Camera download times are great, keep in mind that the QHY600 have 2 Gb or buffer and industry grade sensor, compared with 512 Mb and Consumer grade sensor on the competitor. It's a great camera.

 

Regards


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#3 Peter in Reno

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 02:12 AM

Here are the sample images I've taken so far.

 

1) Single Bias sub at -10C and 0.001 second: https://www.dropbox....f_50_e.fit?dl=0

 

2) Master Bias of 100 subs at -10C and 0.001 second per sub: https://www.dropbox....7-2020.fit?dl=0

 

3) Single Dark sub at -10C and 5 minute sub: https://www.dropbox....f_50_e.fit?dl=0

 

4) Master Dark of 30 subs at -10C and 5 minutes subs: https://www.dropbox....7-2020.fit?dl=0

 

All images were using gain of 26 and offset of 50.

 

Peter


Edited by Peter in Reno, 18 June 2020 - 08:21 PM.


#4 Peter in Reno

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 09:17 AM

OK. I figured out how to adjust the QHY prism stalk but I'm a little disappointed that I have to remove the filter wheel from the imaging train in order to get access to prism stalk to be able to access to it and adjust the prism stalk to prevent from the prism to obstruct QHY600M sensor. It's basically an one time adjustment.

 

The prism stalk adjustment is pretty simple. Take flat images and if you continue to see the prism shadow in the flat captured image, continue to adjust the prism stalk until you no longer see the prism shadow.

 

Peter


Edited by Peter in Reno, 18 June 2020 - 08:22 PM.


#5 Gene3

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 09:58 AM

Hi Peter,

Welcome to the 600M club. I got the same camera package (from Tolga Astro) as you, and have been enjoying it for about a month.

I agree its difficult to tell if the camera is getting power without hearing the sound of the fan. A small LED like the one on the Ultrastar SX would have been nice. I look for the green LED on the filterwheel. It lights up initially when the camera is powered up.

You are correct regarding stalk adjustment. To get it set properly first I adjusted the stalk so the prism appeared to be the edge of the sensor when I looked at it. Then I attached the assembly (camera, FW, OAG) to my flattener (already on the scope).   Then I would take a take 1 sec light light frame (Lum) in daylight and look for a shadow on the edge of the image. The I would take the assembly off the scope and move the stalk a small amount., put it back on the scope and take another frame. I did this perhaps 6 times until I had the shadow was just out of the farme. I was a pain, but once its done then you are set and the only thing is to set the OAG focus. I noticed that it appears you are using the ST4 on the Ultrastar SX, not the USB why is that?

One potential weak link I noticed is the cable that connects the FW to the camera. On the FW side there is a RJ11 (phone jack) connector and the juncture between the connector and cable looks very weak. I wrapped some electrical table around it. It is a custom cable and will be hard to replace if it fails. I tried to purchase a couple as backups from QHY but they never responded.

 

For me I found that -13 would show that the camera power was around 65% once it got to temperature.

In DSO (read 0) mode I ended up with gain = 26, offset =60. This gives me an ADU=950 for a 0 sec bias frame.

 

600M 1
600M 2

 


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#6 Peter in Reno

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 10:12 AM

Hi Gene,

 

I am not actually using ST4 connections on the Ultrastar and I am actually using USB. What made you think I'm doing that (I'm using right angle USB cable at Ultrastar)? Maybe my pictures of my setup is not clear but I've not been using ST4 for a very long time (at least for 5 years) and I've always use ASCOM pulse guiding. There is no ST4 cable connected to my Ultrastar autoguider (I'm not a big fan of ST4 connections).

 

Peter


Edited by Peter in Reno, 18 June 2020 - 12:26 PM.


#7 Gene3

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 12:12 PM

Hi Gene,

 

I am not actually using ST4 connections on the Ultrastar and I am actually using USB. What made you think I'm doing that (I'm using right angle USB cable at Ultrastar)? Maybe my pictures of my setup is not clear but I've not been using ST4 in a very long time (at least for 5 years) and I've always use ASCOM pulse guiding. There is no ST4 cable connected to my Ultrastar autoguider (I'm not a big fan of ST4 connections).

 

Peter

Hi Peter,

The connector to your Ultrastar SX looked kind of big and square-ish. Now that I look at it again I can see its a right angle connector. (BTW where did you get it?) I too eschew ST4



#8 Peter in Reno

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 12:23 PM

Hi Gene,

 

I got the right angle USB cables from https://www.l-com.com/ . They are not the cheapest and plus their shipping charges are not the cheapest either. But I feel their USB cables are better than other brands. I've used their products for at least 5 years without issues.

 

Peter



#9 Gene3

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 01:54 PM

Hi Gene,

 

I got the right angle USB cables from https://www.l-com.com/ . They are not the cheapest and plus their shipping charges are not the cheapest either. But I feel their USB cables are better than other brands. I've used their products for at least 5 years without issues.

 

Peter

waytogo.gif



#10 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 12:20 AM

I noticed horizontal bandings that I was seeing at USB traffic 0 are not present in Peter's data.

If I raised the traffic to 50, the horizontal banding almost disappeared so I thought that it was normal.

 

After seeing Peter's data, I was concerned that my camera had an issue.

So I did some experiment taking biases at USB traffic 0.

 

I tried a different USB cable but the bandings persisted.

I was using power from PrimaLuceLab Eagle 3 (camera's power connected to an Eagle 3's power connector).

Instead I used the power supply that I received with the camera and the banding disappeared.

I tried a separate 12V battery for the camera and powered the Eagle 3 with another battery.

Also the bandings didn't exist.

Next I powered the Eagle 3 and the camera with a same battery but didn't use the Eagle 3's power connector.

The bandings were much weaker than using the Eagle 3's power connector but still there.

I had one of these DC noise filter (https://powerwerx.co...se-filter-oemt)

I added the filter between the camera and the battery (the camera and Eagle 3 still powered with the same battery) and I hardly noticed the bandings if any.

 

I really like to use Eagle 3 as the power source but I'm not sure if there is a way to solve this banding issue.


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#11 rgsalinger

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 12:47 AM

One thing you can try is to put RF chokes on the USB cables. It is likely that the banding is the result of RF leaking into the USB connection. If you are using USB3 you're running at over 10mhz. 

 

I've had my camera for about 5 months now. I struggled with it for a long time because my NB filters were too small and I had a light leak that I just could not find. Once I got larger replacement filters the problem completely went away. 

 

I've been running my system using USB 2. I use gain 26 and offset of 10 when I bin 2x2. That gives me about 600 adu which is in the right range. Tonight I'm trying narrow band for the first time. We'll see how it goes. I have kept my USB bandwidth to 30 and I see no banding or any other issues with the camera.

 

I recently upgraded to the latest driver which seems to have eliminated the cooling problem I had originally. Now, the camera just works for me night after night.

 

Rgrds-Ross


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#12 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 12:53 AM

Thank you for the suggestions.

 

I will get one of the RF choke and try one.

I will try USB 2 as well.

In the worst case I can bring an extra battery but I like to avoid that if possible.


Edited by Denimsky, 19 June 2020 - 12:55 AM.


#13 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 01:01 AM

Is a ferrite core same thing as RF choke?

If it is, the USB cable that I use already has a ferrite core attached.

 

I'm wondering if this is more power related than the USB because it disappears when the power source changes.



#14 Peter in Reno

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 02:47 AM

I am using Power Werks power supply along with PWRgate.

 

https://powerwerx.co...upply-powerpole

 

https://powerwerx.co...s-super-pwrgate

 

I connect the power supply and 12V battery to PWRgate. Under normal condition, the output of PWRgate comes from power supply and PWRgate is charging the 12V battery. When there's a power outage, the output of PWRgate seamlessly switches to 12V battery. 

 

Peter 


Edited by Peter in Reno, 19 June 2020 - 02:53 AM.

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#15 FredOS

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 04:22 AM

Have you reached out to Primalucelab to see if there is anything that relates to the Eagle 3 ? I have never had similar issues on my Eagle 2 but haven't tested it with a QHY600.



#16 rgsalinger

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 04:52 AM

Yes a ferrite core is the same thing as an RF choke. It absorbs high frequency energy that can get into the camera connections. 

 

https://www.amazon.c...906389220&psc=1


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#17 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 08:20 AM

Have you reached out to Primalucelab to see if there is anything that relates to the Eagle 3 ? I have never had similar issues on my Eagle 2 but haven't tested it with a QHY600.

Hi Fredric

 

I may do this later after testing with another camera.

It is possible that 600M is a bit more sensitive to interference and I'm not sure if PrimarLuceLab can do anything with this.



#18 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 08:21 AM

I am using Power Werks power supply along with PWRgate.

 

https://powerwerx.co...upply-powerpole

 

https://powerwerx.co...s-super-pwrgate

 

I connect the power supply and 12V battery to PWRgate. Under normal condition, the output of PWRgate comes from power supply and PWRgate is charging the 12V battery. When there's a power outage, the output of PWRgate seamlessly switches to 12V battery. 

 

Peter 

Peter I'm mainly portable so I like to run things with 12V batteries.



#19 FredOS

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 11:40 AM

For those of you with the camera, the QHY site is a little confusing.

For the QHY600, it shows the CFW 3L large filter wheel as the appropriate filter wheel. it then shows the OAG M as the appropriate one for this combination. However, separately it indicates that the OAG L should we used with the CFW L. Anyone know the right answer ?

 

Thanks



#20 Peter in Reno

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 12:18 PM

Yes, QHY web site is very confusing. I sent a message to QHY about this and it took a while but they finally responded.

 

1) Both Medium and Large CFW3 filter wheels work with QHY600M and OAG-M.

2) OAG-L only works with XL CFW3 filter wheel.

3) OAG-L will NOT work with Large CFW3 filter wheel.

 

The clues can be found from mechanical drawings at:

 

CFW3: https://www.qhyccd.c...137&id=34&cut=1

 

OAG: https://www.qhyccd.c...133&id=39&cut=1

 

Note the dimensions at the telescope and camera ports of CFW3 Medium and Large filter wheel and OAG-M are the same. The only difference is the FW body is obvious larger for Large than for Medium FW.

 

Peter


Edited by Peter in Reno, 19 June 2020 - 02:49 PM.

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#21 rgsalinger

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 03:54 PM

I ran some tests just now with my QHY600 using the latest driver. I tried to get some narrow band data last night for the first time. The calibration results were terrible. I found the problem - the Offset was way way too high and so the flats just would not work. While I was experimenting I looked at what happened to my bias frames when I changed the USB bandwidth. Sure enough, the bias frame ADU level went from 850 at bandwidth 50 to 770 at bandwidth 20.

 

Now I am running USB 2 and I'm using HighGain which I think is mode 1. So, your results my differ. If you find that you change the bandwidth from time to time, you should check and see if you have the same effect. 

 

Rgrds-Ross


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#22 Peter in Reno

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 04:08 PM

Try USB bandwidth at 0. I think the the USB bandwidth adjustment is designed for much faster USB3. 

 

Peter 



#23 rgsalinger

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 08:52 PM

I'm just going to leave it at 30. You're right about the bandwidth adjustment, I think. When I went from 20 to 50 there was no change in download speed. It's takes about 10 seconds to get a full frame and I can live with that. 

Rgrds-Ross



#24 Peter in Reno

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 09:59 PM

The bandwidth adjustment probably doesn't affect USB2 download speeds but I'm surprised about the changes in USB2 bandwidth affecting bias ADU values. 

 

Peter 



#25 Denimsky

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 10:47 PM

Here is a post regarding the USB traffic by Dr.Qiu

https://www.cloudyni...455/?p=10269049




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