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Old 07-06-2008, 08:25 PM
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jjjnettie (Jeanette)
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Colour CCD cameras

Has anyone had a go at imaging with a colour ccd security camera?
The ones I looked at today had lux rating of .05 which is fairly low, but is it low enough?
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Old 07-06-2008, 10:20 PM
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Tandum (Robin)
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I have a couple of security cameras here. One is rated at .001 lux but they are all video out, so you need a video capture card to collect images and you can't adjust exposure time, as far as I know.

Last edited by Tandum; 07-06-2008 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 07-06-2008, 10:38 PM
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Jeanette,
The 0.05 might be to little sensitivity which would be further cut down by FL of the Lens and the Bayer matrix on the sensor. Usually the 0.05 rating is only archived with a very fast lens. Myastroshop have a new NTSC version of the GSTARX which is relatively cheap. From a software point of view for this type of camera a good one is Astovideo which can do frame integration if the camera is not able to do so. And provide extra integration time for camera's that can only to a few seconds worth of integration on board. You can get it here but you do have to pay for it, 25euro. But last i checked you can try before you buy.
http://www.coaa.co.uk/astrovideo.htm

A good place to look and ask are the Videoastro yahoo group, I found the users quick and fast to reply to my questions.
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/videoastro/

Also Cloudynights have a new section just for Videoastronomy users. Many users have started there own live video channels that broadcast to the internet.
http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthrea...at/0/Board/VAA

Regards
Fahim
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Old 07-06-2008, 11:02 PM
Karls48 (Karl)
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I have Mintron MTV- 62 colour camera. It is basically colour version of GStar camera. Being colour camera it is less sensitive then GStar and it suffers from having many more hot pixels. I just recently fitted it with Peltier cooling but I did not done any imagining with it yet.
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Old 08-06-2008, 06:33 AM
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Can I ask why Jeanette?
There are few alternatives.
Gary
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Old 08-06-2008, 08:41 PM
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jjjnettie (Jeanette)
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Thanks for the replies everyone.
Gary, I was just curious that's all.
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Old 09-06-2008, 04:44 AM
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Well you know what happened to the cat, LOL............
No it was a loaded question as the likes of the Q Guider is available in a mono or colour flavour and this is quite cost effective, as is the venerable ToUcam, depending on what you wanted to use it for.
Gary
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:08 PM
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Hi Jeanette,

At a lux rating of 0.05 I think that would be not sensitive enough for anything other than bright stars or planets. I noticed in your signature that you have the G-star mono camera. I think they have a lux rating of 0.000002 or there abouts so they are alot more sensitive. If you are intrested in colour astro video then the only way to go is the Mallincam hypercolour plus video hand made by Rock Mallin in Canada. They are very sensitive TEC cooled colour video cameras with a rated lux rating of 0.0000000006 with the hypermode on and the cooling on. I imported one a couple of months ago and the images it provides me on my colour LCD monitor are nothing short of mind blowing. But they are not cheap but once I got mine it was worth every cent and more. I can now view objects in colour in Brisbane using 28 or 56 second intergrations that I would have no hope of seeing out in very dark rural skies. Especially now that fuel is so dear now. Very easy to use, almost plug and play, other than the Mallincam colour I can't think of anything else to use for colour video display that would be worthwhile for astro use.

Matt.
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:27 PM
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Here is a couple of unprocessed images of M42 using 2 second and 7 second intergrations, and a shot of the moon taken by a friend and his Mallincam while I was waiting for mine, they work best on deep sky but you can adjust the shutter speed up to 1/12000 of a sec so they work fairly well on lunar and planets but the more dedicated web cam type imagers do a better job at this but for deep sky they are great. Still got alot of learning to do but as you can see M42 core becomes over exposed at 7 seconds, but we have since found out that you can adjust the sensitivity of the the different areas of the chip in the menu so you could capture more exposure time on the outer fainter neb while keeping the sensitivity of the middle region of the chip turned down so the core does not wash out as what happened with the above image. Just waiting for m42 to come back to town to try this feature. I don't have a video converter to display and capture my images yet so I can't show you more but last Thursday night we had good seeing here in Brissy and the Lagoon, Eta, Triffid nebs, Tuc 47, Omega Centaurus and the list goes on were just breathtaking. Cranking up the intergrations to 28 secs we nearly fell off our chairs when the images were displayed, once I get my Imaging source converter in I will start posting some of these to the forum.

Matt.
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Last edited by coldspace; 09-06-2008 at 07:39 PM.
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:35 PM
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jjjnettie (Jeanette)
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Looks like a very nice camera.
I like the idea of video astronomy, it is very forgiving if your polar alignment isn't spot on. And viewing deep sky objects in real time is mind blowing.

My next camera purchase though will have to be a DSLR.
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