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Old 10-03-2012, 02:51 PM
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h0ughy (David)
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If you were t o buy a planetary Imaging camera setup what would be good and needed?

Well i pose this question - its slightly loaded. I want a planetary imaging camera that will do the following - image the planets obviously and solar work. If you were to buy a planetary Imaging camera setup what would be good and needed?
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:23 PM
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lepton3 (Ivan)
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Well, I'm pleased with my mono Imaging Source DMK21AU04, although now you would obviously get the 618 version for a usable 60fps.

To go with it you'd need a filter wheel and LRGB filters -- I saved a few bucks and bought a manual wheel and the Orion filter set and have not been disappointed, but most serious imagers seem to be using Astronomik or others. Automatic filter wheel would be more convenient, but not a big deal for me.

You absolutely must have electric focus.

Depending on the f.l. of the OTA, you'd need some amount of barlows or powermates for the planets, possibly a focal reducer for the sun. I'm happy with my TV 2.5x powermate. It's good with my C11 for Jupiter and Saturn. I use a 2x barlow + extender for Mars, Venus, and Mercury, but I think a 5x powermate would be better.

The critical choice is between mono and colour. It's more hassle to do mono, but it allows you to use UV, IR and narrow band filters, so this is my preference.

-Ivan
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:50 PM
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do you have a image of the camera setup Ivan?

i would be imaging with a meade14"
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:26 PM
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Merlin66 (Ken)
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I use DMK21 and DMK41 with a combination of Powermates for Solar imaging..
The results are much better than I can process!
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:40 PM
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I have yet to see better results from the DMK21 than the DBK21, and the DBK21 being colour is far less hassle.
Of course if you are interested in doing IR on the planets then get a DBK21 and a filter wheel.

For solar, a mono camera is less of a pain though, but the DMK21 really means you are left with mosaics due to the chip size.

If I was buying on a budget, I'd get a DBK21 for planetary and a BMK41 for solar and lunar work, and use the DBK21 for lunar if/when you want colour.

If I had more money, I'd get the point grey cameras instead.

I know the prevailing thought is that the DMK with filters will kill the DBK one shot colour, but for planets I haven't found this to be the case.
I think the reason is that you can only get short exposures on the planets because of rotation, so for example if you can only get 3 minutes total exposure before rotation smears away the detail, then that leaves you with 1min of red, 1min of blue, 1min of green when using the mono cam with filters.
With the colour camera, although your resolution is theoretically less for each channel, you are getting longer exposures per channel, you effectively get 3mins of red, 3mins of green, 3mins of blue, and more importantly they are temporally the same.
The stacking procedure recovers a lot of that resolution per channel loss, by having more data (longer exposure) for each channel, so in the end, the results seem close to identical when I have imaged both ways (I have both cameras).

For Solar though, Mono is far less work and gives better results.

For the cost of a DMK21 + filters + Wheel you can almost get a DBK21 *and* a DMK41 which is far better suited for solar work.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:05 PM
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asimov (John)
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I'd be settling for a DBK618 for planets in your case, David. I think you'll get better results re: solar work from a mono imager though. That way you can swap & change filters if/when necessary. The DMK21 (old version) is great for solar work. Plenty of those around ready to be dropped off with the release of the new 618 chipped versions. For serious solar work though, I'd be doing what Peter suggests - DMK41
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:19 PM
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David,

Here's what the setup looks like on my C11 with the 2.5x Powermate. I have a JMI motofocus, which is not ideal; there is a fair bit of image shift when you are cranked up at long f.l.. If I was putting together the dream planetary imaging rig I would use a zero image shift focuser.

Others have mentioned the DBK colour cameras, which I do not have experience with, but I wouldn't doubt the results that John for example has been getting. Only thing is, as I mentioned, you are limited when it comes to filters e.g. UV on Venus is not possible.

Also agree, for full disc solar and lunar work, the DMK21 sensor size is a bit small, and a DMK31 or 41 might be better. But my Canon 400D works fine for these targets. For full disc I usually take a max of about 30 images and stack them.

-Ivan
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  #8  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:21 PM
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asimov (John)
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It seems to me, there is now no 'huge gap' between the 2 systems of colour versus mono like there was a few years ago. I chose colour because of the tropical conditions here - Cloudy one minute, gone the next, making it near impossibly to get those 3 lots of all important data without big headaches.

Any 'gap' between the 2 systems has narrowed yet again with the creation of the DBK/DFK618 & software like Autostakkert.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlin66 View Post
I use DMK21 and DMK41 with a combination of Powermates for Solar imaging..
The results are much better than I can process!
2" powermate? that would take the 14" to f20 wouldnt it?
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  #10  
Old 10-03-2012, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Poita View Post
I have yet to see better results from the DMK21 than the DBK21, and the DBK21 being colour is far less hassle.
Of course if you are interested in doing IR on the planets then get a DBK21 and a filter wheel.

For solar, a mono camera is less of a pain though, but the DMK21 really means you are left with mosaics due to the chip size.

If I was buying on a budget, I'd get a DBK21 for planetary and a BMK41 for solar and lunar work, and use the DBK21 for lunar if/when you want colour.

If I had more money, I'd get the point grey cameras instead.

I know the prevailing thought is that the DMK with filters will kill the DBK one shot colour, but for planets I haven't found this to be the case.
I think the reason is that you can only get short exposures on the planets because of rotation, so for example if you can only get 3 minutes total exposure before rotation smears away the detail, then that leaves you with 1min of red, 1min of blue, 1min of green when using the mono cam with filters.
With the colour camera, although your resolution is theoretically less for each channel, you are getting longer exposures per channel, you effectively get 3mins of red, 3mins of green, 3mins of blue, and more importantly they are temporally the same.
The stacking procedure recovers a lot of that resolution per channel loss, by having more data (longer exposure) for each channel, so in the end, the results seem close to identical when I have imaged both ways (I have both cameras).

For Solar though, Mono is far less work and gives better results.

For the cost of a DMK21 + filters + Wheel you can almost get a DBK21 *and* a DMK41 which is far better suited for solar work.
thanks Peter. that almost makes sense i have a dmk41 but the option of getting a usb3 flea seems very tempting. i bought a usb3 expansion for the laptop in anticipation? but as to what i order?
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asimov View Post
I'd be settling for a DBK618 for planets in your case, David. I think you'll get better results re: solar work from a mono imager though. That way you can swap & change filters if/when necessary. The DMK21 (old version) is great for solar work. Plenty of those around ready to be dropped off with the release of the new 618 chipped versions. For serious solar work though, I'd be doing what Peter suggests - DMK41
the sad fact is i have been using my dmk41 for guiding the meade14
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by lepton3 View Post
David,

Here's what the setup looks like on my C11 with the 2.5x Powermate. I have a JMI motofocus, which is not ideal; there is a fair bit of image shift when you are cranked up at long f.l.. If I was putting together the dream planetary imaging rig I would use a zero image shift focuser.

Others have mentioned the DBK colour cameras, which I do not have experience with, but I wouldn't doubt the results that John for example has been getting. Only thing is, as I mentioned, you are limited when it comes to filters e.g. UV on Venus is not possible.

Also agree, for full disc solar and lunar work, the DMK21 sensor size is a bit small, and a DMK31 or 41 might be better. But my Canon 400D works fine for these targets. For full disc I usually take a max of about 30 images and stack them.

-Ivan
thanks Ivan for the setup pic and the advice do you use the iccapture software or something else?
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:13 PM
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Budget is really going to decide what you get.

You already have a DMK41 so use that for solar. That is what I use and you have seen the results I have obtained with that.

Now the only choice you have to make is do you go one shot colour or Mono for planetary. Given NSW's weather in the last few years it might be better to go with the OSC of the DBK618. It carries the same version of the PGR cameras but it is in colour. It can do 60fps and that will suit all the planets generally.

If you want to go full mono, then get an electric focusor and electric filter wheel. It makes life easier. 2x 1.25 barlow will give you plenty of scale too. I am using this configuration on Mars, Saturn and Jupiter. The filter wheel produces a further 1x mulitiplier effect on the focal length, if you use something like the True Technology supaslim filter wheel. Camera is a matter of choice really with both PGR and IS cameras producing good results. PGR stuff is pretty noise free from great electronics though, however price is reflective of this fact too. Personally I like the PGR camera and I prefer mono gear myself. Check out my recent planetary images. You know Anthony uses them too. I have had several IS cameras over the years and know that noise is present in all their cameras but the latest version may well be pretty noise free at high gain levels.

Choice is yours David. Welcome to planetary imaging and waiting for good seeing. If you think DSO imaging is frustrating, then this will really test your patience. Run away while you can.
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:16 PM
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BTW I use the barlow before the filter wheel on my rig.
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:35 PM
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Budget is really going to decide what you get.

You already have a DMK41 so use that for solar. That is what I use and you have seen the results I have obtained with that.

Now the only choice you have to make is do you go one shot colour or Mono for planetary. Given NSW's weather in the last few years it might be better to go with the OSC of the DBK618. It carries the same version of the PGR cameras but it is in colour. It can do 60fps and that will suit all the planets generally.

If you want to go full mono, then get an electric focusor and electric filter wheel. It makes life easier. 2x 1.25 barlow will give you plenty of scale too. I am using this configuration on Mars, Saturn and Jupiter. The filter wheel produces a further 1x mulitiplier effect on the focal length, if you use something like the True Technology supaslim filter wheel. Camera is a matter of choice really with both PGR and IS cameras producing good results. PGR stuff is pretty noise free from great electronics though, however price is reflective of this fact too. Personally I like the PGR camera and I prefer mono gear myself. Check out my recent planetary images. You know Anthony uses them too. I have had several IS cameras over the years and know that noise is present in all their cameras but the latest version may well be pretty noise free at high gain levels.

Choice is yours David. Welcome to planetary imaging and waiting for good seeing. If you think DSO imaging is frustrating, then this will really test your patience. Run away while you can.
thanks Paul, i do like the fact i can get a one shot go - time and the weather is hard to beat though i can see the advantage of resolution with the mono cameras. I am leaning towards the usb3 flea3
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Old 13-03-2012, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Haese View Post
Budget is really going to decide what you get.

You already have a DMK41 so use that for solar. That is what I use and you have seen the results I have obtained with that.

Now the only choice you have to make is do you go one shot colour or Mono for planetary. Given NSW's weather in the last few years it might be better to go with the OSC of the DBK618. It carries the same version of the PGR cameras but it is in colour. It can do 60fps and that will suit all the planets generally.

If you want to go full mono, then get an electric focusor and electric filter wheel. It makes life easier. 2x 1.25 barlow will give you plenty of scale too. I am using this configuration on Mars, Saturn and Jupiter. The filter wheel produces a further 1x mulitiplier effect on the focal length, if you use something like the True Technology supaslim filter wheel. Camera is a matter of choice really with both PGR and IS cameras producing good results. PGR stuff is pretty noise free from great electronics though, however price is reflective of this fact too. Personally I like the PGR camera and I prefer mono gear myself. Check out my recent planetary images. You know Anthony uses them too. I have had several IS cameras over the years and know that noise is present in all their cameras but the latest version may well be pretty noise free at high gain levels.

Choice is yours David. Welcome to planetary imaging and waiting for good seeing. If you think DSO imaging is frustrating, then this will really test your patience. Run away while you can.
just been chatting to the PGR folk - they don't move much on price or delivery for that matter - $100 us regardless of the weight. all up it would be closer to the $1000 dollar mark. i might go with the IS USB2 version for under $500 australian after all i don't really image planets much - but now is as better time to learn as later thanks for the feedback
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Old 13-03-2012, 04:29 PM
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Yes, they don't like bargaining at all.

Glad I could be of help.
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  #18  
Old 14-03-2012, 10:07 AM
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Paul, what do you think of the Grasshopper2?
http://www.ptgrey.com/products/grass...ire_camera.asp

I have a film project that requires a camera of that ilk, but I'm wondering if it would be useful for astro work as well?
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Old 14-03-2012, 10:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlin66 View Post
I use DMK21 and DMK41 with a combination of Powermates for Solar imaging..
The results are much better than I can process!
I get weird concentric rings with the powermate for solar.
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  #20  
Old 14-03-2012, 10:57 AM
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Peter I suggest you contact Bird about this camera and get his thoughts. I don't know much about this camera really.
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