View Full Version here: : Tick Tock, Tick Tock
22-03-2012, 06:30 PM
Just waiting for the arrival of my new QSI683WSG-8 camera to arrive tomorrow. It left Sydney yesterday from Bintel, on overnight road transport. I suspect it will not arrive until Monday given Australian postal services but I might be pleasantly surprised.
Why did I buy a new QSI when I already have a good one in the 583WSG? Well there are a number of reasons.
First and foremost my DSO imaging aspirations include doing images with L R G B Ha SII OII as full combinations. It was going to be too hard to do that with the current camera.
An increase in cooling capacity. My only gripe with the 583 is that cooling on warm nights (26 degrees C or thereabouts) meant that I had to increase the temperature to be held and that does not always suit me. Don't get me wrong the cooling is good 99% of the time, it is those rare nights that I want more cooling power.
In preparation I have picked up the refractor today and all the filters ready for the new camera. I will post images once it arrives.
22-03-2012, 07:35 PM
Lucky bugger. I cancelled my order for a QSi683 after wating 3 monts with no end in sight with the promise of an SBIG STF before Xmas last year. Its now end of March no no STF-83000 :mad2::mad2::mad2::mad2::mad2:
22-03-2012, 08:36 PM
I've been wrestling with the idea of upgrading my 583ws for the same one as you're waiting for. Same reasons as you. I can upgrade mine for the 8 filter wheel etc, but for the cost I might as well just go the whole hog and trade in the 583.
22-03-2012, 08:51 PM
Does your better half know of your plans, Troy?
I was tempted to upgrade as well but decided that in the long run it was too expensive and to be honest I'll take the few minutes to change the wheel if I want to do the whole shebang of LRGB and NB on an object.
I still love the feel of the camera and it's engineering when I use it. It's a jewel in aluminium.
22-03-2012, 09:20 PM
No, she doesn't. And if you keep quiet, she won't. :D
Yeah, I'm leaning away from it now. Always in the back of my mind, but would need to be doing a lot more imaging to justify it.
Sorry for the OT, Paul. Jealous.
22-03-2012, 09:27 PM
Chris I made my order just after new year and at that time it was supposed to be 6-8 weeks. One of QSI's component makers up and cancelled an order and that put a spanner in the works. It took them some time to come up with an alternative supplier and then test the part of consistency (This is basically the story I was told). In any event all is good. Shame about the SBIG.
Troy and Allan, yes I had to think about this long and hard before ordering. This system works so well as it is with the 583 and as you say Allan the Jewel in aluminum. As yet I am undecided as to whether I want to sell the 583 or just use it with a SLR lens and the WS face to do wide field.
22-03-2012, 09:56 PM
Just get an adapter and use some of Virgs lenses with it. :thumbsup:
I envy your choice of the 683 as the better cooling and time for downloads will be a great advantage and I think if you manage to couple this with the 12" GSO RC it really will be a killing machine for photons.
22-03-2012, 11:06 PM
What refractor did you pick up Paul?
QSI 683 sounds like a wonderful camera.
It sounds like a FLI Microline with a built in guider and filter wheel. Very neat.
23-03-2012, 12:28 AM
Don't worry I won't be using any Canon lenses on my gear. Like Tony I have a fairly good collection of lenses now (Nikkors all the way). No self respecting Nikon dude will have Canon lenses an his gear. :P Well maybe his freak 400.
The 12" will have my STL11K working with that. If I ever find time to get some images done with that. :question:.
My TSA 102 Greg; I went down to the observatory and picked up my little battle tank. I think you might have thought I bought another one. Can't afford to do that yet. LOL.
The 683 is really a supped up 583. The design of these cameras is just pure elegance. When you open these things up to install the filters you see how really thoughful the design is in reality. Great cameras.
23-03-2012, 07:53 AM
They sound great.
When I've fiddled with adapters and spacers and so forth I have started to think - maybe I should get a QSI 6 series. The FLI Microline seemed a lot more advanced in performance than the 5 series but not so sure there is too much of a gap if any in the 6 series. Then the combined convenienve of built in filter wheel and offaxis guider puts the QSI in front.
FLI's traditional strengths have been powerful cooling, super fast downloads (1 second full frame), super low noise, option of no cover slip,
argon filled hermetically sealed CCD chamber, guarantee of sensor orthogonality, compact and light but rugged, quality shutter and CCD window. FLI filter wheels are so so. Perhaps the new Centreline model has raised the bar otherwise FLI filterwheels are overpriced. The main issue with FLI is they disregard autoguiding solutions completely.
Now I've been doing astrophotography for around 6 years now it becomes clear that if you can get round focused stars eveything else kind of takes care of itself. You are more than halfway there. So to disregard that aspect is crazy, its at least half the problem of imaging.
23-03-2012, 09:34 AM
The only things in the your list Greg that were missing from the 5 series was the super cooling and fast download speed everything else QSI had been doing. Not to mention QSI moved into this market from scientific imaging, which they had been doing for nearly 30 years. The QSI cameras are small for a reason; that being so it fits on a microscope. It had nothing to do with astronomy and that was just a happy by-product. The electronics produce quality results because scientific imaging requires that standard. Again just another happy by-product.
I have quizzed Kevin from QSI several times about their products and where they have come from. Each time I was met with professional and informative information. The company has an interesting background and is keen to corner a niche within this market. The way the camera is put together and its design is what made me buy the 6 series.
23-03-2012, 10:49 AM
I've had a QSI 540wsg for a while now and I agree with Paul about the need for additional cooling. I had a water cooled heat exchanger mounted on the camera but it wasn't all that effective in Adelaide's Summer temps. My QSI 683wsg-8 arrived a few months back and I have never had a problem reaching my set temp of -20C. I think I successfully tried -30 once! One thing I have found is that the KAF-8300 chip in the 683 (and 583), is so much more sensitive than the KAI-04022 in the 540. I virtually never saw cosmic ray strikes before but now get multiples per frame. No problems and easy to get rid of but interesting! I get a bit of vignetting as I only have mounted 1.25" filters. Unmounted 31mm would have been a better option but Flat Fielding fixes the vignetting at least for my satisfaction.
23-03-2012, 01:39 PM
It arrived this morning. Images below show me and my new baby.
Got it doing 20 minute darks right now in 20C room temp at -25C 81% power. Noiice. :D Darks look even and consistent with a few cosmic ray strikes here and there.
As always impressive looking piece of engineering. I have all the filters mounted now and ready for action. I am going to try the focusing disk for the OAG instead of the spacer. We'll see how that goes.
Double boxing on the shipping is excellent when combined with the pelican case.
23-03-2012, 01:43 PM
Is that some drool I see on your t-shirt and pants? Dont worry, this camera would make me do the same!
23-03-2012, 01:54 PM
Yeah most likely.:lol:
23-03-2012, 02:28 PM
Nice looking unit...who's the aging surfy :question:
23-03-2012, 02:29 PM
Very nice Paul.
Your project idea sounds exciting.
BTW, that first pic is very Sidonio-esque!!
23-03-2012, 03:58 PM
Some old grungy dude. :)
Yeah looking forward to doing the multi bandwidth imaging.
Yes that first image does have that madness look. :P
23-03-2012, 05:16 PM
Filter wheel looks huuuuuuge.
23-03-2012, 06:18 PM
Onya Paul......enjoy to the max.
23-03-2012, 06:34 PM
First batch of 16 darks at 20 minutes completed. The power went up to 86% by the end but all done at -25C. Now on to the next lot of darks.
23-03-2012, 07:32 PM
16 Is a strange number to pick, and I would have thought median combination would benifit from an odd number of samples
23-03-2012, 07:59 PM
That's an extremely attractive cam now Paul, nice purchase, what with 8 pos wheel, 1.25 filters, decent cooling, OAG etc. Sheesh, but I'd love to see it with a 6303 chip.
23-03-2012, 10:32 PM
Nice one Paul.
Fred, I believe QSI are working on a future larger chipped camera model.
No data on when it will be released.
24-03-2012, 08:39 AM
Obviously them making a larger chip model of this camera It would lose the ability to use 1.25inch filters without vignetting. I cant imagine how big and heavy it would be with an 8 position 2 inch filterwheel in it!
24-03-2012, 10:09 AM
Peter 16 is a good number I have found. I don't use median on my darks I use sigma reject mean. That gives a really nice dark for subtraction and I guess my results show that.
You're right about the filters if they use a larger sensor. However, I am sure they will come up an elegant solution. This camera is very light and nothing like the weight of an FLI setup and filters.
Fred, I would go with a larger sensor too, but for now this size sensor suits my imaging interests. I always thought the 6303 sensor with it deep wells and size was a good size for 2.7" focusors. The cost though is usually much higher than even the 11000 sensor.
Greg QSI have had plans for the 700 series and published this on their site for as long as I have owned my QSI. Sometime in the future (when that it, no one knows) I guess they will get around to completing the design. I would not hold your breath though. :)
24-03-2012, 03:52 PM
Looking good Paul, congratulations :D
I finally got my 6mm spacer in the post the other day and that managed to get rid of the coma using my Baader MPCC. Then I went on to try some precision collimation with CCDInspector, but unfortunately the clouds rolled in again before I could finish that. Next week should have some clear nights however...
It's a great camera, I'm also impressed with how fast it cools down. It's so nice and easy to use, just plug it in, pop it on the scope and away we go :D
24-03-2012, 06:44 PM
Well I ran the camera for 26 hours at -25C did darks at 1x1 at 10mins, 2x2 at 10 minutes, 2x2 at 15mins, 1x1 at 15 minutes and 1x1 at 20 minutes. Mainly at 84% power and in a 20 degree room. Never missed a beat. Did a warm up prior to disconnecting.
I now have my dark library set for the next 4 months. I am also very happy with its performance so far. Stay tuned for the first light image.
26-03-2012, 06:31 PM
First night of imaging completed. Thoughts so far.
Overall a great improvement over the previous features. Although fast down loads is only applicable for reference images. I did not notice any change in speed of download at 1x1 binning.
The extra cooling is very nice though and I can see already how this will help with my imaging. I decided on some tough targets just to get a taste of what the unit can do.
IC2631 which Greg recently did and one I will work on in the coming months to finish. I have included a copy of it with 2x 20 minutes of lum, 2 x 15 for each colour. There is a bit of noise but with another two sessions this could be a really nice image.
The other is one I have not seen here and it will be my first narrow band image. Suffice to say you will have to wait.
Overall very happy with the new camera.
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