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Old 07-11-2007, 10:44 AM
Michael Clark
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Recommended Webcam for Autoguiding

Hi All,
New to this forum and was after some advice. I wish to use the
Stark Labs PHD guiding software and was wondering if anyone could recommend a good webcam to use. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers
Michael
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  #2  
Old 07-11-2007, 11:13 AM
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iceman (Mike)
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Hi Michael, to IceInSpace!

I'm using a DMK21AF04 for autoguiding, because I already had it for use with my planetary imaging. The DMK21AF04.AS (new versions) can do exposures up to 60 minutes, so 1-2s exposures or less, for auto-guiding, is no big deal.

You can use a ToUcam 900nc, unmodified, as long as your guide star is bright enough - because it can only do as long as 1/25s exposure.

Most people either modify the ToUcam to be able to do long exposures, or you can get something like a 2nd hand LPI or DSI which will do the job well.
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Old 07-11-2007, 01:55 PM
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rogerg (Roger)
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I use my Logitec QuickCam Pro 4000 because that's what I have. It's about the same sensitivity as the ToUCam's of it's day (unsure on the new ones). It works well on bright stars (for my telescope, magnitude 5 or brighter stars).

I have recently been playing with a long exposure modified ToUCam. I haven't found it as good as I expected, requiring 5+ second exposures for stars I couldn't guide on using the QuickCam. So for me it's not looking worthwhile at this stage.

My preference would be a second hand Meade DSI I, but I never see them available for purchase and don't want to pay for a DSI II.
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Old 07-11-2007, 08:50 PM
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Terry B
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Clark View Post
Hi All,
New to this forum and was after some advice. I wish to use the
Stark Labs PHD guiding software and was wondering if anyone could recommend a good webcam to use. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers
Michael
I use a QHY guider that I am very happy with. It is available from http://web.aanet.com.au/gama/QHY%20Cmos.html
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Old 07-11-2007, 08:59 PM
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ballaratdragons (Ken)
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Hi Michael, welcome

I use an unmodified Toucam for guiding (and sometimes a Modified Toucam), but I have extremely dark sky.
It might be a bit difficult using unmodded if you have any light pollution.
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Old 07-11-2007, 09:03 PM
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ballaratdragons (Ken)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerg View Post
I have recently been playing with a long exposure modified ToUCam. I haven't found it as good as I expected, requiring 5+ second exposures for stars I couldn't guide on using the QuickCam. So for me it's not looking worthwhile at this stage.
That's wierd.

I get masses of stars when autoguiding with my modified Toucam and I have it set at 2 seconds, and run autoguide update speed at between 0.5 seconds and 1.5 seconds (depending on the seeing)

By masses, I mean stars everywhere in the FOV.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:25 PM
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rogerg (Roger)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ballaratdragons View Post
That's wierd.

I get masses of stars when autoguiding with my modified Toucam and I have it set at 2 seconds, and run autoguide update speed at between 0.5 seconds and 1.5 seconds (depending on the seeing)

By masses, I mean stars everywhere in the FOV.
Intersting.. what focal ratio? I'm at F/6.3.

Roger.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:28 PM
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ballaratdragons (Ken)
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Intersting.. what focal ratio? I'm at F/6.3.

Roger.
around f5 if I use the ED80, and around f4 if I use the 120mm achro
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:34 PM
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Interesting, must make some difference. F4 compared to F6.3 certainly wood. Thanks
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:43 PM
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ballaratdragons (Ken)
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Originally Posted by rogerg View Post
Interesting, must make some difference. F4 compared to F6.3 certainly wood. Thanks
Yep, and even at f4, the movement of stars in ratio to f6.3 is still in sub arcseconds. You would have to get down to about f2 before guiding may start to become inaccurate. The stars would still be guided in small to sub arcseconds, but ratio would let it down. In reality the stars would be moving in large arcseconds, which still should be ok for minutes of imaging, but risky for hours.

Arcseconds won't change but the scale of movement does.
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Old 08-11-2007, 07:57 AM
Michael Clark
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Hi,
Thankyou all for you feedback. I appreciate it greatly.

Cheers
Michael
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  #12  
Old 13-11-2007, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ballaratdragons View Post
That's wierd.

I get masses of stars when autoguiding with my modified Toucam and I have it set at 2 seconds, and run autoguide update speed at between 0.5 seconds and 1.5 seconds (depending on the seeing)

By masses, I mean stars everywhere in the FOV.
My experience is the same. I get lots of stars with 2 s exposure, and 110mm f7. My only problem is that I can't get PHD to guide when using the long exposure option. (Details on this thread)
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