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Old 24-07-2021, 02:44 PM
bluesilver (Peter)
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ASI2600MC and APT setup

Hi, I have decided to make the move from a DSLR to a ASI2600MC
A bit of a large change.
I just have a few questions i am hoping someone might be able to assist me in setting things up, I have done a bit of searching around first, but no real answers.

1. Dithering with APT and PHD2 ( i am using the multi star guiding in PHD2)

What is the ideal dithering settings for this camera?
Scope is Evostar 150ED and guide scope is Orion 60mm guide scope

Currently with the DSLR i am using
Dithering distance 10
Dithering stability 1.00
Dithering settle time 10
In PHD2, i am using scale 1.0 and mode is random

2. Cooling and warming,
I think i get the cooling part, around -10 seams like a good temperature for this camera, but then there is also a warming option also, I have no real idea on what i should be looking to set this at.

I did read somewhere that it is recommended that you turn off the cooling and select the warming to bring the camera back up to 0 c before turning it off, not sure if this is correct or not?

I do have a few more APT related questions unfortunately as the camera operation is slightly different from my DSLR operation, but hoping just to get these two questions solved before flooding with many questions,
The other questions are i am sure just basic imaging startup questions.

Any advice on these two questions first though would be much appreciated.
Thanks.
Peter.
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Old 25-07-2021, 08:01 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Peter,
Ive used my 2600MC camera with APT ( Camera driver is Ascom controlled ) for nearly 12 months now
Donít use the ZWO native driver if you can help it. Ascom works seamlessly
In Ascom for the camera Iíve tried both Gain 0 ( highest dynamic range) and Gain 100 ( Lowest Read Noise ) Gain 100 does reduce your read noise a tad but Gain 0 does expose more detail especially in nebulas etc..
Attached is my APT procedure
I cool my camera to -10C all year which is adequate
I dither in APT using dither distance 1
Dither Stability 0.70
Dither settle 15 sec
Dither time out 180
Dither every image or 1

Hope the above helps

Cheers
Martin
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File Type: pdf Astrophotography Tool Procedure.pdf (50.0 KB, 5 views)
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Old 25-07-2021, 09:14 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Startrek View Post
Peter,
Ive used my 2600MC camera with APT ( Camera driver is Ascom controlled ) for nearly 12 months now
Donít use the ZWO native driver if you can help it. Ascom works seamlessly
In Ascom for the camera Iíve tried both Gain 0 ( highest dynamic range) and Gain 100 ( Lowest Read Noise ) Gain 100 does reduce your read noise a tad but Gain 0 does expose more detail especially in nebulas etc..
Attached is my APT procedure
I cool my camera to -10C all year which is adequate
I dither in APT using dither distance 1
Dither Stability 0.70
Dither settle 15 sec
Dither time out 180
Dither every image or 1

Hope the above helps

Cheers
Martin
Peter,
Sorry missed one of your points
Yes PHD2 dither scale is 1 and dither is random
Cheers
Martin
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Old 26-07-2021, 10:42 AM
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xa-coupe (Jeff)
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I did exactly the same thing recently, and it has moved me to another level with the quality of images. The 2600MC is an excellent camera and worth every cent.



I left my dithering settings 'out of the box' and have had no problems. Actually, upon reflection I set the 'settle time' to 15 just to make me feel better.
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Old 26-07-2021, 11:17 AM
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xelasnave
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Martin if you are still there..within Sharpcap you can set gain at least with the 1600 mono ..is it not possible to do the same with the 2600...I wish to try the same high gain approach as I was experimenting with on the 1600..I am not close the the camera and lap top so I ask.
Alex
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Old 26-07-2021, 11:34 AM
Startrek (Martin)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xelasnave View Post
Martin if you are still there..within Sharpcap you can set gain at least with the 1600 mono ..is it not possible to do the same with the 2600...I wish to try the same high gain approach as I was experimenting with on the 1600..I am not close the the camera and lap top so I ask.
Alex
Alex
The 2600MC is a completely different camera to the 1600
The 2600MC has no unity gain
Itís safe to set it to Gain 100 as you get the lowest read noise for optimum dynamic range
Iíve been using both with Gain 100 and Gain 0 with good results although I have found during a quarter to full moon , Gain 100 has been better for narrowband imaging
See attached 2600MC charts, you can see Gain vs Read noise chart that read noise jumps after Gain 100 but in saying that you donít reach full well , thatís the trade off
So my experience after having the camera for nearly 12 months
Gain 100 for 60 sec to 3 minute subs under moon for narrowband
Gain 0 for 60 sec to 5 minute + subs in the dark

Other folk may have found different experiences

Cheers
Martin
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  #7  
Old 26-07-2021, 11:41 AM
Startrek (Martin)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Startrek View Post
Alex
The 2600MC is a completely different camera to the 1600
The 2600MC has no unity gain
Itís safe to set it to Gain 100 as you get the lowest read noise for optimum dynamic range
Iíve been using both with Gain 100 and Gain 0 with good results although I have found during a quarter to full moon , Gain 100 has been better for narrowband imaging
See attached 2600MC charts, you can see Gain vs Read noise chart that read noise jumps after Gain 100 but in saying that you donít reach full well , thatís the trade off
So my experience after having the camera for nearly 12 months
Gain 100 for 60 sec to 3 minute subs under moon for narrowband
Gain 0 for 60 sec to 5 minute + subs in the dark

Other folk may have found different experiences

Cheers
Martin
Sorry Alex
Forgot to mention , give APT a go , my 2600MC camera runs seamlessly under the Ascom driver
Or maybe others can advise on Sharpcap ??? I donít use it
Cheers
Martin
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Old 26-07-2021, 03:55 PM
bluesilver (Peter)
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Appreciate the reply and also that good write up on APT
Will set up the Dithering as you have mentioned as you have had good results with that.

It is interesting how the procedure in APT for these dedicated astronomy cameras is very different from the procedure that i have been using with a DSLR ( for starting up and taking an image to plate solve with)

With my DSLR, i would have APT slew to a selected object,
I would set the camera to 2 second exposure,
Then i would click the shoot icon,
Then after it has taken the 2 second exposure, i would click sole in pointcraft.
The image would then be plate solved.
I then change the camera exposure to bulb.
Then select goto++ the camera then takes a long 2 minute exposure and solves the object by placing it in the center of the screen.

A little different from the procedure you have for the astronomy cameras which i am keen to give a try.

I am also wondering if what i have been doing with the DSLR will also work with these cameras.
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Old 26-07-2021, 04:07 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluesilver View Post
Appreciate the reply and also that good write up on APT
Will set up the Dithering as you have mentioned as you have had good results with that.

It is interesting how the procedure in APT for these dedicated astronomy cameras is very different from the procedure that i have been using with a DSLR ( for starting up and taking an image to plate solve with)

With my DSLR, i would have APT slew to a selected object,
I would set the camera to 2 second exposure,
Then i would click the shoot icon,
Then after it has taken the 2 second exposure, i would click sole in pointcraft.
The image would then be plate solved.
I then change the camera exposure to bulb.
Then select goto++ the camera then takes a long 2 minute exposure and solves the object by placing it in the center of the screen.

A little different from the procedure you have for the astronomy cameras which i am keen to give a try.

I am also wondering if what i have been doing with the DSLR will also work with these cameras.
Peter,
Iíve read the APT manual ( 180 odd pages ) and the DSLR procedure is definitely different from a dedicated astronomy camera
APT was designed for both cameras , they have different functions and purposes
I donít plate solve so canít help you on that front , I use EQMOD and Ascom Stellarium independently from APT to slew , Goto and find objects and use the live view screen on APT to frame my objects. I do use APT to dither my PHD2 guiding as both are Ascom and connect to each other , however I donít use APT to launch PHD2 , I open PHD2 independently and guide independently, but APT does send a dither command to PHD2 based on the APT dither settings.
I only use APT to frame, focus and capture which does a great job
Cheers
Martin
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Old 26-07-2021, 04:14 PM
bluesilver (Peter)
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Ah, I get where you are coming from now.
I was tad confused when i was reading through your procedure as that part was was missing ( plate solving )
But now that you mention that, it all makes sense now re reading through it.
Very keen to give it all a go when this wet weather decides to clear up.

I must get to a read that APT manual, there is a fair bit involved with it.
But as always, i appreciate you putting up your procedures, makes things just that bit easier to get the head around.

Very much appreciated.
Thanks.
Peter.
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Old 26-07-2021, 04:31 PM
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xelasnave
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Thank you Martin.
Alex
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Old 26-07-2021, 07:09 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluesilver View Post
Ah, I get where you are coming from now.
I was tad confused when i was reading through your procedure as that part was was missing ( plate solving )
But now that you mention that, it all makes sense now re reading through it.
Very keen to give it all a go when this wet weather decides to clear up.

I must get to a read that APT manual, there is a fair bit involved with it.
But as always, i appreciate you putting up your procedures, makes things just that bit easier to get the head around.

Very much appreciated.
Thanks.
Peter.
Peter,
Itís a pleasure to help
Hope you get it up and running
Cheers
Martin
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Old 26-07-2021, 07:10 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Originally Posted by xelasnave View Post
Thank you Martin.
Alex
Alex,
No problem at all
Hope you get up and running soon
Best
Martin
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