Ultra low lux security camera for observatory use WITHOUT IR - suggestions please!
Posted 16 September 2020 - 03:29 PM
I’m looking for an ultra low lux security camera that I can use to view the scope in my observatory while imaging. I have IR cameras but the IR interferes with the images and they aren’t sensitive enough without it.
Ideally the camera would have an app that I can use on my phone so I don’t have to dial into the observatory computer but this is not critical.
Posted 16 September 2020 - 03:55 PM
Suggest Dahua with Starvis sensors. Blue Iris to record video, provide remote access, and send alerts.
Edited by Szumi, 16 September 2020 - 03:57 PM.
Posted 16 September 2020 - 04:01 PM
I've used the ZWO planetary cameras (e.g. 224) with great success. The drawback is that you need to use the computer, but the ability to do long exposures allows you to literally see in the dark. And usually when operating the scope you're not in too much of a hurry so the long exposures won't hurt much. If you need to see more or less in real-time, bumping the gain to max allows that at the cost of (much) noise.
Posted 16 September 2020 - 04:29 PM
I use this one in my observatory...no IR lights and will give good images under starlight (and even the pesky little LEDs from computers and power supplies in the observatory).
Price has gone up since I bought mine about a year ago.
Posted 16 September 2020 - 04:30 PM
Which wavelengths are you imaging in? Are you shooting monochrome with filters? Is light getting in ahead of or behind the filter, or both?
If light is getting in between your filter and camera, look for a way to plug that up. If light is getting in from the scope side of the filter, then you might be able to use some other infrared light source with peak wavelength outside of your filter's pass bands, or use a different IR camera. Per the following article, most "night vision" security cameras use IR LEDs with peak wavelength near 850nm, but you can also get some tuned for 940nm: https://ellipsesecur...ir-illuminator/
Looking at emission spectra for 850nm IR LEDs, it doesn't look like there's much overlap with the S-II filter range, so that's a bit confusing, unless you have light leaking between your filter and camera. Maybe switching to a 940nm light source with the same cameras is still worthwhile? https://www.amazon.c...r/dp/B0785W2RQQ
Otherwise, you might be able to find a passive system with long exposure capability.
Posted 16 September 2020 - 07:49 PM
It's not what you are looking for, but I use a HikVision camera, which does have IR but can be turned off.