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Old 30-11-2011, 04:09 PM
Karls48 (Karl)
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Orion StarShoot G3 Deep Space

My Meade DSI 2 has died in weird way. The stars got black circle in the middle, historygram is broken to numbers of segments with no signal between them (black) I guess that CCD sensor failed. It had Outback cooler fitted to it and I used it with Skywatcher 150mm F5 refractor for photometry and variable stars images. It is big blow for me DSI was quite good for what I was doing.
So Im looking for replacement. Funds are very limited, it is just before Christmas and on top of everything I just got electricity bill for $500. After searching Web I come up with couple possibilities.
Orion StarShoot G3 Deep Space - http://www.bintel.com.au/Astrophotog...oductview.aspx. It has similar spec. as DSI2 but sensitivity is much lower. But at $629 from Bintel I can afford it. Cooling is not very good at 10deg below ambient is not much but I like that it got sealed CCD chamber. Full Well Capacity is 50000e same as DSI2

Atik 320E http://www.andrewscom.com.au/site-section-10.htm It got very small pixels (4.4um) but 2x2 binning it should give me similar image scale as DSI2. Cooling is better at 25deg below ambient but is unregulated (but I can build regulator for it) and the manual does not mention how do they prevent CCD window from frosting. It uses newer progressive scan chip and it looks like this camera that should last me for some time. The price - ouch $1400. I cant afford it really and beside the price here is a big problem. From what I can find on the Web, Full Well capacity is 5500e~ (unusable) or 14000e~ (to just barely usable). Take your pick. I cannot understand how companies expect to sell their product without providing proper specification.

I would appreciate any comments on my choice of CCD cameras and any suggestions. Just remember that $1400 is a limit that I can spend. Im retired with two small kids and as with all of you substantial part of my Super went only God knows where.
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Old 01-12-2011, 06:36 AM
Karls48 (Karl)
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Here are couple pic to show what is my faulty DSI doing.
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Old 01-12-2011, 10:02 AM
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bmitchell82 (Brendan)
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That looks like a very bright star that your on Karl and the white streaks are what is called Blooming. I know the DSI has a ABG (anti bloom Gate) that should stop this but mmmm.
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Old 01-12-2011, 10:15 AM
Karls48 (Karl)
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Yes, it should not do this. And that is with 20 seconds exposure. I have try to rewrite esquare with different CCD sensor, the colour one, and then rewrite it back to mono, but result is same. I think the CCD chip is cactus.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:18 AM
Karls48 (Karl)
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Well it seems that no one got any experience with Orion Starshoot G3 camera and I can't afford more expensive camera so I took chance based on specifications and order one. Bintel does't have mono version in stock so they will order one for me. Should be here in about two weeks. Sorry kids - there goes your Christmas presents (just kidding). I have to say that at least the Orion does provide proper specifications for their products - full well capacity, gain and readout noise.
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Old 02-12-2011, 05:46 PM
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Hi Karl,

I think that the blackcircle is due to having the contrast set too high. As for the splodge, did your scope slip?

Robert
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Old 02-12-2011, 08:19 PM
Karls48 (Karl)
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Unfortunately it is not due to contrast. I'm getting same results regardless of contras, gain and offset settings.
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