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Old 09-01-2013, 02:02 PM
Poita (Peter)
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Poita is offline
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: NSW Country
Posts: 3,585
A cooled and modded DSLR isn't a bad option, it has the advantages of not having to have the computer tethered to take images.
However you will usually be guiding anyway, so there is often a computer hooked up.

The downside to me with the cooled DSLR route is the clunkyness and the cost.

It is fairly pricey to get a modded and cooled DSLR, and the temps won't usually get down as low as a cooled CCD camera.

For not much more you could get a QHY8 or similar camera with a Sony chip that doesn't really require darks, has solid cooling and great Ha sensitivity.
The QHY8L requires darks, or long bias frames as it is an interlaced chip you get some amp glow in one corner due to the way it reads the image out.
I'd go for the QHY8 Pro instead if you need the 'coke can' style casing.

Run nebulosity on your Mac and the drivers are built in for the QHY8, as are most of the tools to do image acquisition, stacking, stretching etc.

It is an easy path to take, will set you back between $800-$1000 for the camera, and will work with the Mac beautifully.
If you don't like it, the resale value is pretty close to what you would pay for it, so there is probably only $50-$100 risk in buying one to see if it suits you.

That pretty much holds for any 2nd hand Astro CCD, if you choose wisely the resale price is pretty much what you will pay for it.

[BTW: I sound like an ad, but my camera already has a buyer, so there is no bias ]
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