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Best Camera for EAA with a C14

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#1 Tommyent

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 11:20 AM

I'd like to start getting into EAA to show friends and family that my nerd hobbies aren't as boring as they look. I've added a large TV to the observatory as well as a new computer that can handle fast captures (previously I had been using astroberry which has a low write speed). Also, I've recently learned more about matching a camera to a scope, and have found that my C14 likes big pixels so I usually have to bin my CCD to get good results.

 

What camera would be a good match for EAA on a big ol' C14 from the 70's?

 

PS - I'm in a Bortle 5



#2 GaryShaw

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 11:43 AM

Hi

Folks her might find it helpful if you provide a bit more information - such as:

 

- observing interests, likely targets, etc

- scope focal length

- existing ccd camera specs

- CCD versus CMOS

- use of filters, if so, size
- size of scope’s image circle

- preference for one shot color ( OSC) or mono

- need or desire for camera cooling

- budget, if any….

- clarify ‘ fast captures’ - are you planning on lots of planetary observing? (not EAA)

 

Gary



#3 Tommyent

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 11:56 AM

Hi

Folks her might find it helpful if you provide a bit more information - such as:

 

- observing interests, likely targets, etc

- scope focal length

- existing ccd camera specs

- CCD versus CMOS

- use of filters, if so, size
- size of scope’s image circle

- preference for one shot color ( OSC) or mono

- need or desire for camera cooling

- budget, if any….

- clarify ‘ fast captures’ - are you planning on lots of planetary observing? (not EAA)

 

Gary

 

The C14 has an aperture of 352mm and a focal length of 3910mm. I often use an Astrophysics reducer bringing it down to a more manageable 2615mm focal length, but I also have the 0.63x and 0.33x reducers in my arsenal. I already have a few cameras for AP listed in my signature (QSI 683, ASI1600mm, and ASI290mm) so I'd really be looking for something just for EAA.

 

I don't know much about EAA and it's requirements, so I'm looking for advice on the camera specs. So far I think colour makes sense, and probably a very high sensitivity/frame rate? Personally I love my CCD camera and think that hardware binning is helpful to match the pixel size with the scope, but I'm not sure if the slow readout is a problem for EAA or not.

 

As for targets, I'd like to show people bright, colourful nebulae and interesting DSOs



#4 MarMax

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 12:51 PM

What's your budget?

 

Low Budget:
- 1st choice would be the ZWO ASI294MC (non-cooled)

- 2nd choice would be the Player One Saturn-C 

- 3rd choice would be the ZWO ASI585MC (on sale now)

 

High Budget:

- 1st choice would be the ZWO ASI2600MC-Pro (on sale now)

- 2nd choice would be the ZWO ASI294MC-Pro

- 3rd choice would be the ZWO ASI533MC-Pro

 


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#5 Tfer

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 01:25 PM

With the focal length of that scope, get the largest sensor you can afford.

 

I use a C11 with a 0.63 reducer and while others have had success with a 178 based camera, I’ve never had success with plate solving or stacking with it.  There simply aren’t enough stars visible.  My 294 has yet to let me down.



#6 bips3453

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 01:34 PM

I would start with a camera I already have. ASI1600mm should get you started. It can be binned to get to the required pixel scale. Since this is a mono camera, you might want to add a color camera later. My 2 cents.



#7 alphatripleplus

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 01:36 PM

 

I don't know much about EAA and it's requirements, so I'm looking for advice on the camera specs. So far I think colour makes sense, and probably a very high sensitivity/frame rate? Personally I love my CCD camera and think that hardware binning is helpful to match the pixel size with the scope, but I'm not sure if the slow readout is a problem for EAA or not.

 

As for targets, I'd like to show people bright, colourful nebulae and interesting DSOs

For capturing DSOs with EAA, you won't be using fast frame rates (typical of planetary imaging). Typical EAA sub-exposures are several seconds at the low end to tens of seconds at the long end. Fast frame rates or read out times are likely not a concern.


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#8 Tommyent

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 01:45 PM

alright, so a large sensor should be on the list? Definitely colour; I feel like mono wont be as amazing for EAA and everything I have is mono so far. 

 

Is software binning acceptable to get a camera to the correct pixel size for EAA? I know that binning a CCD has better SNR improvements over CMOS, and I'm not sure how important reducing noise is when stacking live. I was thinking the 2600MC but I'd have to bin it 3x3 to get to the "correct" pixel size.

 

Also, a big sensor would take the 0.33x reducer off the board; maybe it's not useful anyway?

 

PS - Budget wise, I would be looking to get the right equipment but probably used. I'm ok with keeping an eye out for a good deal on the high end. 



#9 Tommyent

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Posted 10 August 2022 - 01:46 PM

For capturing DSOs with EAA, you won't be using fast frame rates (typical of planetary imaging). Typical EAA sub-exposures are several seconds at the low end to tens of seconds at the long end. Fast frame rates or read out times are likely not a concern.

Good to know! I've seen cameras claiming to be good for EAA because they're fast, but maybe that's because I was looking at CCDs




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