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Old 03-05-2012, 10:39 AM
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SBIG announces new cameras

Some new cameras announced today from SBIG

STT model and STXL

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SBIG/f.../STT_pages.pdf

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SBIG/f...STXL_pages.pdf

Very innovative design changes. They have a filter wheel with pick off mirror and guider built into wheel in front of filters. Very clever.

I loaded them up on mywebsite for those without SBIG group access:

http://www.dslrfocus.com/downloads/STT_pages.pdf
http://www.dslrfocus.com/downloads/STXL_pages.pdf

Last edited by cventer; 03-05-2012 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:43 AM
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Note, must be a member of the SBIG yahoo group in order to access those PDFs.
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:54 PM
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I like the eight positon filter wheel in both models and the filter wheel registration - this will really help get better flats.
James
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Old 03-05-2012, 04:11 PM
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Wow, fabulous looking cameras. You've got to hand it to the SBIG engineers. They are very innovative. That idea of the chip in the filter wheel is genius.

Fast downloads, strong cooling, saphire CCD windows, remote guide head available and an AO8 option, a good filter wheel. That idea of the little wheel on the filter wheel is Apogee's filter wheel design. I guess Apogee didn't patent it. That system worked fabulously well on the Apogee. The even illumination shutter is also a very good thing and superior to the expensive leaf type shutters.

Sounds like a winner.

STXL, though only 6303 and 11000 is an odd choice. No 16803 yet?
Otherwise a nice improvement over straight STX and makes self guide more appealling and no need for an off axis guider which is just another expense, another thing to go wrong, more adapters and takes up backspace.

It would also be interesting to see how they implement RBI control as its more than just a preflash. I have heard the Apogee version does not do its job. FLI's does. RBI though is highly overrated unless using the 09000 chip or perhaps if you are doing photometry. I don't use RBI control on my FLIs and seen RBI twice and it didn't impact on the image either.

SBIG is on a roll.

Any post about prices?

Greg
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Old 03-05-2012, 09:08 PM
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Hmmm interesting. Looks like they took a QSI apart and copied that a bit. It seems QSI was on to a good thing.
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:42 PM
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Thanks for posting that info Chris.

I am glad I have held off making a decision between FLI and SBIG.
The new design from SBIG ticks all the boxes for me.
I hope they do the STXL with the 16803 chip.

Cheers

Phil
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Old 04-05-2012, 03:09 PM
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They cant do the STXL with 16803

The 16803 chip is too large for the STXL body which is smaller the the current STX body.

This is why they have stuck to KAI-1100 and KAF-8300 chips

Before i got my STX i was allways thinking about an STL 1100 but did not like th eslow download etc...

If this had been an option I probably would not have bought the STX16803 and gone with STXL with 1100 chip in it.

50mm round filters are sooooooo much cheaper. My 65mm set just cost $1800, ouch.

Fli need to play a bit (actually a lot) of catch up when it comes to integrated experience including guiding.
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Old 04-05-2012, 03:42 PM
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It certainly was about time SBIG copied the pick off in front idea. I'm glad I held off purchasing a QSI 600 series camera to replace my 500 series. Unfortunately my budget is quite a bit lower than most of you guys. I hope SBIG will sell these at a lower price than QSI.
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Old 04-05-2012, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbradley View Post
Wow, fabulous looking cameras. You've got to hand it to the SBIG engineers. They are very innovative. That idea of the chip in the filter wheel is genius.

Fast downloads, strong cooling, saphire CCD windows, remote guide head available and an AO8 option, a good filter wheel. That idea of the little wheel on the filter wheel is Apogee's filter wheel design. I guess Apogee didn't patent it. That system worked fabulously well on the Apogee. The even illumination shutter is also a very good thing and superior to the expensive leaf type shutters.

Sounds like a winner.

STXL, though only 6303 and 11000 is an odd choice. No 16803 yet?
Otherwise a nice improvement over straight STX and makes self guide more appealling and no need for an off axis guider which is just another expense, another thing to go wrong, more adapters and takes up backspace.

It would also be interesting to see how they implement RBI control as its more than just a preflash. I have heard the Apogee version does not do its job. FLI's does. RBI though is highly overrated unless using the 09000 chip or perhaps if you are doing photometry. I don't use RBI control on my FLIs and seen RBI twice and it didn't impact on the image either.

SBIG is on a roll.

Any post about prices?

Greg
I agree but for photometry and spectroscopy RBI is a real problem. the 6303 version with a NABG chip and deep wells would be very good for photometry.
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Old 04-05-2012, 04:15 PM
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Does anyone know how will it achieve focus for the Guider when the guider is significantly infront of the main chip?
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Old 04-05-2012, 04:25 PM
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Does anyone know how will it achieve focus for the Guider when the guider is significantly infront of the main chip?
Yes, I was wondering that myself.

Apart from that, they look very attractive, specially the 6303
The guide cam in front of the filter wheel and all integrated with a decent number of filters and good cooling is a killer. SBIG is back in front IMO, and about time
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Old 04-05-2012, 04:43 PM
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Does anyone know how will it achieve focus for the Guider when the guider is significantly infront of the main chip?
Some OAG's have other optics in them, not just the prism.
I'm guessing SBIG have included optics in this model to bring it to focus at the same time?
It won't be ferpect focus but probably enough for guiding.
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Old 04-05-2012, 07:16 PM
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Sadia,

The photo seems to show some optics which look like its probably a prism, if so, I guess it bends the light off to the periphery and in doing so lengthens the light path to the same length as the main chip, hence achieving focus.

Guesswork until we see more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Haese View Post
Hmmm interesting. Looks like they took a QSI apart and copied that a bit. It seems QSI was on to a good thing.
Paul,

The QSI simply has an OAG prism in built as a guider port and you add your own guiding system, whereas the SBIG has a fully integrated internal guide camera but now placed in front of the filter wheel which also works in conjunction with all of the SBIG functionality - eg Adaptive Optics, pulse guiding etc etc
No copying there.

Rally
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Old 04-05-2012, 07:35 PM
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Yes, I was wondering that myself.

Apart from that, they look very attractive, specially the 6303
The guide cam in front of the filter wheel and all integrated with a decent number of filters and good cooling is a killer. SBIG is back in front IMO, and about time
I agree Fred. I think SBIG just reclaimed the lead. For some though it may come down to how the RBI preflash is done. I know the Apogee one is a flop and FLI got it right. But FLI has now been caught up with and is no lacking autoguiding solutions and AO units. It still has the best focuser units and their cameras are still good but on paper these new SBIG cameras sound better.

I guess the merge with that larger company has been a good thing for SBIG. They probably got much needed capital to develop all these products and we are now richer for it.

I also agree the guide chip on the filter wheel is a far better solution than an offaxis guider connected to the front.

Posts here about the QSI583 guider needing fussy packers. I hope the 683 got that sorted.

Off axis guiders are just another thing that can go out of whack.

I just then, had to hunt down a tilt issue that once again came down to not properly seated MMOAG and adapters. Wow. Its constant maintenance with a rig isn't it?

Anything that reduces that is a very welcome advancement.

Greg.
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Old 06-05-2012, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by rally View Post

Paul,

The QSI simply has an OAG prism in built as a guider port and you add your own guiding system, whereas the SBIG has a fully integrated internal guide camera but now placed in front of the filter wheel which also works in conjunction with all of the SBIG functionality - eg Adaptive Optics, pulse guiding etc etc
No copying there.

Rally
No; place the guiding solution (does not matter if it is a camera or sensor) in front of the filters in the camera body is QSI's idea and as such is a good reason to copy it. SBIG did copy the idea. Besides looking in a QSI and then seeing those images in the PDF does show a lot of similarities and therefore means they did copy a lot of the features or more correctly reverse enginnered the ideas. Yes there is some copying going on.

Greg, the guide issue is still present but there are easy fixes. These should be included as part of the purchase kit for the camera I think rather than being optional extras.
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:11 PM
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Sorry Paul,

I just cannot see how SBIG have copied QSI who supposedly invented the idea of putting a guide port in front of the filters

Placing a guide camera in front of filters has been an Off Axis Guiding standard that everyone has been doing ever since Off Axis Guiding was developed.
QSI has only been around for 20 years at most and did not even exist when people in amateur and especially professional circles, were doing this and other companies were making the OAG equipment to do it.

The first OAGs were the human eye in an eyepiece with manual control - not sure if this predates our time in centuries or just decades !
The camera was merely a later addition as was electronically automated RA and Dec correction.

Neither company has really done anything particularly new, except that SBIG did commercialise the novel idea of having an integrated guide chip within their cameras and since they were able to Patent that idea that serves as legal proof of of it being an original idea.
They then merely took that a step further (probably at public request for narrowband guiding or AO) and put the chip on the front side of the filter wheel in the same manner that most OAGs had been doing for such a long time.

What is good is that there is always progress that results in more opportunities for better and easier imaging.

Rally







Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Haese View Post
No; place the guiding solution (does not matter if it is a camera or sensor) in front of the filters in the camera body is QSI's idea and as such is a good reason to copy it. SBIG did copy the idea. Besides looking in a QSI and then seeing those images in the PDF does show a lot of similarities and therefore means they did copy a lot of the features or more correctly reverse enginnered the ideas. Yes there is some copying going on.

Greg, the guide issue is still present but there are easy fixes. These should be included as part of the purchase kit for the camera I think rather than being optional extras.
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:08 AM
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I've always liked the remote guide head that came with my STL 11000. Nice to see it now included with the STT. I think I'll order one of the 8300 cameras and put it on my ASA N12. Although the N12 has a large field, the smallish pixels, better cooling, better shutter, lower overall cost of filters, and remote guide head may result in a killer high speed combination with 3nm bandpass filters. We'll just have to see how expensive this all becomes. This may also be an excellent imaging system for the new RH200 from Officina Stellari which has a smallish image circle.

Problem is however the potential long wait. I waited nearly 8 months for the STI guider, which never arrived. So I gave up and cancelled the order. In order to "Take the Lead" you do have to deliver product. BTW, I still own the original first generation ST10XE and it still produces excellent results.

And as a side note, there is no way I would ever get rid of my FLI Proline 16803. Stunning performance that I consider still ahead of Apogee and SBIG.

jg
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Old 07-05-2012, 08:46 AM
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Sorry Paul,

I just cannot see how SBIG have copied QSI who supposedly invented the idea of putting a guide port in front of the filters...


Rally
Indeed. Don Goldman's MOAG was a 3rd party SBIG based solution that I'm pretty sure predates the QSI implementation ....not to mention the thousands of OAG-mounted ST4's that relieved you from the drudgery of hand guiding stars into their red-glowing guide-boxes some 25 years ago....

I've already ordered a "full-enchilada" (8 position wheel, AO etc.) STT8300 for myself, as with the AO, I see it as a killer high-res galaxy imaging system that should regularly allow guiding rates of around 10Hz.

Last edited by Peter Ward; 07-05-2012 at 09:21 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old 07-05-2012, 10:07 AM
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Indeed. Don Goldman's MOAG was a 3rd party SBIG based solution that I'm pretty sure predates the QSI implementation ....not to mention the thousands of OAG-mounted ST4's that relieved you from the drudgery of hand guiding stars into their red-glowing guide-boxes some 25 years ago....

I've already ordered a "full-enchilada" (8 position wheel, AO etc.) STT8300 for myself, as with the AO, I see it as a killer high-res galaxy imaging system that should regularly allow guiding rates of around 10Hz.

I'd be very interested to see how that works out. My FLI ML8300 is a great camera but it needs AO to be worthwhile on my CDK17 unless its a great night of seeing.

A Starlight Express AO unit has been on my wishlist. But a more integrated, all working together setup may be better. Also I don't know that all AO units are the same in terms of performance.

On paper it looks like SBIG has kicked a goal here and the company appears reinvigorated and moving forward again which is nice to see.
The buyout appears to have been a very positive thing.
Greg.
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Old 07-05-2012, 10:36 AM
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....
The buyout appears to have been a very positive thing.
Greg.
Yes and no... delivery times have certainly blown out.
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