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Old 23-01-2015, 08:28 AM
dradford (Don Radford)
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Question Moravian 16803 experience of

Hi All

I have just placed an order for a Planewave 14 CDK ( http://planewave.com/products-page/t...tube-assembly/ ) to go on my EQ8

I have decided on a Kai 16803 to go on it and are considering the Czech G4 1600 Moravian
http://www.gxccd.com/art?id=383&cat=1&lang=409
https://myastroshop.com.au/moravian/index.htm

It would obviously be safer to go for a FLI or SBig model but especially with the American dollar soaring the price differential to the Moravian including filter wheel OAG is large. I have tracked down reviews but they are sparse. Quite a few reports in European French/Italian site (thank you Google translator). Negative reports are very rare of all Moravian cameras

Is anyone using the Moravian 16803 and if so any reports would be appreciated. Any general reports on Moravian quality etc would also be welcome.

Thanks

Don
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Old 23-01-2015, 10:54 AM
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I have the G2-8300 model and I have to say that "now" I am happy with this camera. Initially I wasn't a happy customer. There was an initial USB connection problem and this was fixed rapidly. However, a few years ago the driver situation wasn't nearly as good as it now is. The camera worked well with SIPS (the supplied software) but not well with ASCOM - and there was no native X2 driver for TheSkyX. Those problems have all been addressed and I feel confident in recommending these cameras! The cooling is good and so is the build quality. I've also have had recent excellent direct customer service re drivers. I do find the download time from the G2-8300 to be a little slow but cannot speak about the 16803 chip camera. I do think you would be well served by the camera.

Peter
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Old 23-01-2015, 11:45 AM
clive milne
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Congrats on the Planewave Don.

If it was me, the G4 9000 would be my choice of camera to bolt on to it.

best
c
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Old 23-01-2015, 02:57 PM
dradford (Don Radford)
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thanks Peter
The reports on build quality seem to be generally good.
Download time was a concerning factor
On the G1600 22 sec s was reported on the Moravian site. Oddly although FLI claimed a quick downloads I couldn't find an exact time in seconds anywhere to compare!

Thanks Clive This was a question that has been in my mind

the 9000

Pros Slightly better QE
quicker download
.96"/pixel with Planewave (against .72"/pixel with 16803 a little oversampled)
minimally cheaper

Cons
Less Pixels
RBI - residual bulk image or ghosting I have read is more prominent with 9000 Anyone seen this ?
The best explanation of this and NIR to counteract it is on the Moravian site at http://gxccd.com/art?id=418&lang=409

SO I guess it was the fear of RBI which led me to the 16803 Is the slightly better QE enough to go the other way??

Don
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Old 23-01-2015, 04:12 PM
clive milne
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I was figuring that the sensitivity of the 9000 would be around double that of the 1600 on extended objects when you factor in the relative area of their pixels and the slightly better QE. I suppose that deserves some qualification though; In circumstances where the background signal is low (Narrowband for example) the 1600 will recoup some of the deficit by virtue of its better S/N ratio. (a function of its lower dark current)

A tough call really.
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  #6  
Old 23-01-2015, 06:35 PM
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bert (Brett)
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9000

The 9000 chip is horrible.

This comes from a friend in the USA that has both the 9000 and 16803 wrapped in the same apogee bodies. To give him some credibility, he is chief engineer of the palmomar 200 inch.

The 16803 has only one flaw I can find... It does not gain signal to noise by binning. Don't know why, but I have come across it by 2 seperate observatories, who have done exhaustive testing on it. One observatory ended up going for an e2v 4240 chip, as their purpose is photometry, for which is the 16803 is not suited.

Have fun.
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  #7  
Old 23-01-2015, 08:11 PM
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.72 arc sec /pixel is not oversampled. Depending on which mathematics camp you are in .66 arc sec/pixel may be considered ideal. Sampling Nyquist theory is 3X not 2X (minimum of 2X). My CDK17 is .67 arc secs/pixel and it seems pretty ideal. Too small a pixel and you notice the seeing limiting effect much more heavily.

There are no prices at that link. How much is the G4 with KAF16803?
The KAF16803 will give a residual ghost image very occasionally. For example I imaged the comet recently and it has a very bright head. I then took a few darks and noticed a bright spot that faded with successive darks where the comet head was.

I have also seen that once when a jet flew through an image.
But usually I can't detect but I assume there is some low level of it still present.

A FLI Microline 16803 would be a good choice but I assume still expensive.

A CDK14 sounds like a nice scope.

Greg.
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Old 23-01-2015, 08:51 PM
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Would certainly be interesting to know the price of the Moravian roughly versus (presumably) much more expensive FLI.

(Dreaming of bolting a 16803 on to the FSQ - sigh......)
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Old 23-01-2015, 09:02 PM
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IISer Oztronomer is a Moravian user. AFAIK he is happy, but maybe he'll chime in. He has the KAF-8300 camera.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobF View Post
Would certainly be interesting to know the price of the Moravian roughly versus (presumably) much more expensive FLI.

(Dreaming of bolting a 16803 on to the FSQ - sigh......)
It's a lovely combination, Rob I'm getting inspired by the Tak images we're getting from SRO and thinking about a grand Tak/U16M mosaic from Southern skies once the weather improves.
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Old 23-01-2015, 11:17 PM
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Just going off track a LITTLE, the difference in price between FLI and the others is, IMHO worth the extra.

I have had the occasion to compare the FLI ML 8300 to the Atik 383L+ - both the same chip. The FLI was miles ahead in terms of cooling (the FLI was at -30 in around 2 minutes, vs the Atik getting to -16.5 in 3 minutes, never getting to -30 set point) and download times - full frame on the FLI through MaxIM DL5 was approx. 3 seconds. The Atik took close on 12 seconds.

Having said that though, the Atik's are still exceptional value for money IMHO, and build quality is good.

Can't talk about Moravian, as I haven't even held one let alone used one.

I cannot speak highly enough of FLI. I used to love SBIG....until I got an FLI.
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Old 24-01-2015, 12:34 AM
clive milne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bert View Post
The 9000 chip is horrible.
That is good to know....
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  #12  
Old 24-01-2015, 12:43 AM
clive milne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM View Post
Just going off track a LITTLE, the difference in price between FLI and the others is, IMHO worth the extra.
The microline694 being a case in point. The SX trius 694 has 6e- of readout noise, the ML is down to 3e-! That is up there with the best pro cameras with e2v chips.
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Old 24-01-2015, 11:34 AM
dradford (Don Radford)
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Thanks for the opinions on the 9000 chip I am reassured that I discounted it now!

RE Differential prices

The FLI proline with 7 position filter is approx $16,150 and $13699 on its own (could be a little higher with recent American dollar moves) http://www.bintel.com.au/searchedpro...spx?name=16803 Microline only slightly cheaper.

The Moravian G4 16803 is approx $9700 with 7 position filter wheel and $8900 without.
(all with GST)

That 66% higher price

Does anyone know the download time for the FLI 16803?

Cooling on FLI is -55C and only -45C on the Moravian , Sbig -50C, Atik don't make a 16803.

Don
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Old 24-01-2015, 02:04 PM
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There are 2 download speeds on the Proline. The faster one is about 2 seconds. Its pretty fast.

45C cooling should be fine. -20C should be OK. I usually use the Proline at -35C. Lines etc fade with higher cooling but darks will remove them anyway.

That is a big price difference so I see what you mean.

The FLI filter wheel to me is overpriced, the camera is probably fair price.
I can't see the price in the filter wheel. Its a fairly simple item. The Apogee FW50 filter wheel is also about half the price of the FLI. Although their cutouts in the carousel were at one time causing dust swirl making flats not take out all dust donuts for some imaging in dusty areas. They may have corrected that now - that was a long time ago.

See if you can get a 10 mins -20C dark at 1x1 sent to you. I can post an equivalent one from the Proline. Darks show up a lot of the potential defects if any and the differences in noise from the electronics used.


Greg.
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Old 24-01-2015, 03:33 PM
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[QUOTE=RickS;1150037]IISer Oztronomer is a Moravian user. AFAIK he is happy, but maybe he'll chime in. He has the KAF-8300 camera.


Don

As Rick said I have the Moravian G2-8300 and I've been very happy with it's performance. The build quality is good, It easily drops to -20 and maintains temp settings and just works.

Cheers Geoff
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Old 24-01-2015, 05:43 PM
dradford (Don Radford)
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Thanks Geoff

the Moravain is looking very tempting. As the new scope is not due for 3-4 months I have a little while to decide. However I have to let Planewave know so the correct connections are supplied.

Hi Greg
I will ask on Monday
However there are some figures here from a cloudy nights review of the Moravian Instruments G4 16000 by Michael Miller
http://www.cloudynights.com/page/art...g4-16000-r2815


" I have been testing a Moravian Instruments G4 for the last 90 days. The camera is on loan from the company. Below I have listed my findings from experiences over a variety of imaging sessions performed during that time frame. Filters used were AstroDon Gen II E series. The equipment is located at a remote observatory and images were shot all hours of darkness about 70% of the evenings.

Initial impression-
The camera is very well built, solid and reminds me of a QSI body design. The filter wheel is very compact considering it holds 7 50 mm square filters. Connections were straight forward and solid. Installing the filters was simple and took less than 20 minutes.

CCD Chip characteristics-
The Kodak KAF 16803 chip displayed no detectable bad columns in calibration files and was on the upper quality level of chips I've used. The AP4Win measurements are:

Bias Sum Mean: 999.901 ADUs
Bias Diff StdDev: 7.9189 ADUs
Flat Sum Mean: 80021.4 ADUs
Flat Diff StdDev: 234.557 ADUs
Dark Frame Mean: 506.992 ADUs

Derived Results.....

Conversion Factor = 1.44 electrons/ADU
Readout Noise = 8.05 electrons RMS
Mean Dark Current = 0.005625 e/pix/sec during 1800.0 second exposure at -29.8 C

The read noise is below Kodak specs and was evident in the images. Images calibrated very well and minimal noise reduction in post processing was necessary. "

I guess you would have to do a dark at -29.8 C to compare!

Has anyone used the Moravian OAG?
http://www.gxccd.com/art?id=436&lang=405
I like the fact they make the filter wheel and OAG themselves to fit the G4.

Don
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Old 24-01-2015, 10:29 PM
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As far as I am concerned, if you want to just know you have the very best, the BMW of CCD cameras if you like, go with FLI, however I am sure the Moravian will be perfectly adequate once calibration and processing are perfected and a considerable saving when the dust settles too...up to you

I have had two FLI's (11002 & 16803) and both were absolutely brilliant cameras with fast downloads, great cooling and low noise compared to their competitors.

Mike
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  #18  
Old 25-01-2015, 08:18 AM
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Hi Greg
I will ask on Monday
However there are some figures here from a cloudy nights review of the Moravian Instruments G4 16000 by Michael Miller
http://www.cloudynights.com/page/art...g4-16000-r2815


Not the best images but that's the processing and scope not the camera.

A dark would tell a lot as it shows up things like amp glow and noise levels, bad columns etc.

Its not unusual for these large chips to have a vertical line or two. This is different from a bad column and comes from the vertical readout. 11002 chips get it as well, so do 6303E chips. They dark subtract out.

Greg.
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Old 25-01-2015, 05:46 PM
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FYI SBIG's STX16803 is $US 11590 with filter wheel.

It remains the only 16803 system capable of using AO, with internal and (optional) external guiders.
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Old 06-02-2015, 05:14 PM
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I'm glad I found this thread here just as I was looking to upgrade to a 16803 chip from the KAF8300. Given the favorable USD Euro exchange rate these days, the G4 16000 is almost affordable!

I posted a while ago to CloudyNights and Mike Miller who reviewed it there responded with a few bias frames. They looked pretty good to me. His review was of a loaner camera which MI had loaned out to him to get the word out on the camera. I would have really liked to see some real user reviews.

Further what struck me as a bit odd was the fact Mike actually ended up buying an Apogee after testing the MI G4!

But the price is good and I am definitely interested. I would however love to see a few user reviews before I send the money over.

--Ram
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