ASI294MC Pro (color)

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Product Description

ASI294MC Pro

asi294Sensor5294pro logo

The ASI294MC Pro is the first camera in the world equipped with the latest Sony sensor IMX294CJK. This is one of the top-selling cameras from ZWO. Looking at the specifications and comparing it to the relatively low price, it is easy to see why. Some of the highlights include:

  • back-illuminated sensor – improving sensitivity and reducing noise
  • 4/3” format with 4.63 um pixel size – ideal for many types of telescopes
  • 14-bit ADC– giving high dynamic range of 13 stops
  • An impressive 7ke- full well capacity- helping to reduce the issue of, for example, saturated stars.

On top of this, it also has a very high QE-value with a peak of over 75%. If you are looking for a small-format OSC camera for astrophotography, you can’t go wrong with the ASI294MC Pro.

294MC Pro3

Sony 10.71M-Effective Pixel Color CMOS Image Sensor (official description from Sony site), with a diagonal of 21.63mm (4/3 format). ZWO has refined the sensor and remolded it to increase the diagonal to 23.2mm with approximately 11.71M-Effective pixels (4/3 format).

i_imx294

▶High-Sensitivity Type 4/3 CMOS Image Sensor that Supports 4K for Astronomic Cameras and Industrial Applications

The IMX294CJK sensor is the first in-house image sensor for astronomic cameras to adopt the 4/3 format and provides the necessary number of pixels for true 4k output at 120 frames per second (w/ ADC 10-bit output mode, the ASI294MC can run up to 25fps at 4k format when used with USB 3.0). In addition, the use of larger-sized pixels achieves SNR1s of 0.14 lx* which is very close to the value of the ASI224 (0.13 lx*).

▶Exceptional low-illumination performance

Exceptional low-illumination performance of SNR1s: 0.14 lx is realized by use of a large-size optical system and by expanding the area per pixel to 4.63 µm. This makes the IMX294CJK ideal for astronomic camera market applications that require low-illumination performance.

DDR Memory Buffer

The ASI294MC Pro camera includes a 256MB DDR3 memory buffer to help improve data transfer reliability. Additionally, the use of a memory buffer minimizes amp-glow, which is caused by the slow transfer speeds when the camera is used with a USB 2.0 port.

DDR

DDR memory buffer is the main difference between ASI “Cool” and “Pro” cameras.

14bit ADC w/ 13 stops DR

The ASI294MC Pro has a 14bit ADC unit, allowing it to achieve 13 stops of dynamic range. This is an excellent characteristic for deep sky imaging, which inherently needs high dynamic range. At 13 stops, the ASI294MC has even more dynamic range than the ASI1600.

HCG Mode

HCG (high conversion gain) mode, which reduces read noise to even lower levels at higher gain without loss to dynamic range, is automatically enabled when the gain setting is 120 or higher. Read noise will drop under 2e-, while dynamic range will remain at 13 stops.

294 Gain RN DR FW vs gainFull well Capacity

The ASI294MC provides a great full well capacity of 63700e-, which is 3 times higher than the capacity of the highly regarded ASI1600. Even bright stars won’t saturate under long exposures. This also means that this camera can achieve higher SNR (signal to noise ratio) with just one single exposure.

Reliable Mechanics

ASI294MC Pro has the same mechanics as ASI1600 Pro. There are four screws that seal the sensor chamber. Our camera design has been extensively tested and is very stable. Even when used in higher humidity environments, ASI294MC Pro will still work well without dew problems.

ASI294_600X600NEW

High QE

The IMX294 sensor is a BSI (backside illuminated type) sensor, which has very high QE (quantum efficiency, which we estimate is over 75% peak). 294QE

Dark Current

The dark current of the ASI294 is a bit lower than the ASI1600 at same temperature, based on our test results. Dark frame sample @ Highest dynamic range settings, 300s, -10°C, bin1. Please check the dark frame to make sure you fully know the performance. ASI294MC Pro Dark Frame

294 DarkCurrent VS T

Notice: For the possible amp glow that shows on your images, please refer to this tutorial: “What is Amp-glow and how do I manage it? “

https://astronomy-imaging-camera.com/faq

 

USB 3.0 Port & USB2.0 HUB

USB 3.0 Port: Provide 5Gb bandwidth to make it possible for ASI294 Pro to run at 16 fps (14bit, normal mode) or 19 fps (12bit, high speed mode)  at full resolution(11.7Mega).

USB 2.0 HUB: can connect with various accessories, such as filter wheel, guide camera and electronic focuser, so you can better manage your cables. The ASI294 Pro includes two short 0.5m USB 2.0 cables. The integrated USB 2.0 hub is powered by the external power source if you connect one.

Cooling System

Thanks to the two-stage TEC cooling, ASI294MC Pro can lower the CMOS sensor temperature to 35-40 degrees Celsius below ambient temperature, which can greatly reduce dark current generation and sensor noise even during extended exposure times.

*The Delta T 35-40℃ is tested at 30℃ ambient temperature. It might get down when the cooling system is working for a long time. Also, as the ambient temperature falls, the Delta T would also decrease. 
Please notice that the camera needs to be connected to an external 11-15v power supply to implement the cooling function. We recommend you use 12V@3A DC adapter (5.5*2.1mm, center pole positive) or lithium battery with 11-15V to power the camera. If you don’t have one, please click here to buy a 12V power adapter. There are 4 different standards  for different countries, please make sure you selected the correct adapter when placing the order.

Connecting Diagram

20180131_101314_144

1. M43-T2 adapter (optional)

2. EOS-T2 adapter (optional) 3. 2” Filter (optional) 4. 1.25” T-Mount 5. 1.25” Filter (optional) 6. M42-1.25” adapter 7. T2 extender 11mm

Mechanical Diagram

asi294-Mechanical-Drawing

What is in the box?

ASI294 Pro box includes all necessary cables, adapters, and manuals.

深空相机1-英

Spacer thickness: 0.1mm *1+0.2mm *2+0.5mm *1

The best solution of 55mm back focus length

Cooled Color Camera solution Cooled Color Camera with OAG solution Read more: https://astronomy-imaging-camera.com/tutorials/best-back-focus-length-solutions-55mm.html

Product review:

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/591441-asi-new-camera-294-pro-beta-testing/page-11#entry8165708

Camera technical details

Sensor: 4/3″ SONY IMX294 CMOS
Diagonal: 23.2mm
Resolution: 11.7Mega Pixels 4144X2822
Pixel Size: 4.63µm
Bayer Pattern: RGGB
Shutter:Rolling shutter
Exposure Range: 32µs-2000s
ROI: Supported
Read Noise: 1.2-7.3e
QE peak: TBD
Full well: 63.7ke
ADC:14bit
DDRIII Buffer: 256MB
Non-volatile memory/On camera storage: Build-in total 192K byte user-accessible space(image size up to 480X320)
Interface: USB3.0/USB2.0
Adaptor: M42X0.75
Protect window: AR
Dimensions: 78mm Diameter
Weight: 410g
Back Focus Distance: 6.5mm
Cooling: Regulated Two Stage TEC
Delta T: 35°C-40°C below ambient
Camera Power consumption: 650mA at 5V
Cooler Power consumption: 12V at 3A Max
Working Temperature: -5°C—45°C
Storage Temperature: -20°C—60°C
Working Relative Humidity: 20%—80%
Storage Relative Humidity: 20%—95%
Max FPS at full resolution:
10Bit ADC
4144×2822 19fps
14bit ADC
4144×2822 16fps

Resolution USB 3.0 Raw16
4144×2822 16.3fps
4096×2160 21.1fps
3840×2160 21.1fps
1920×1080 40.9fps
1280×720 59.7fps
640×480 85.9fps
320×240 153.4fps

Resolution USB 3.0 Raw8& HighSpeed
4144×2822 19.0fps
4096×2160 24.7fps
3840×2160 24.7fps
1920×1080 47.9fps
1280×720 69.8fps
640×480 100.5fps
320×240 179.3fps

more resolutions are in software, support customize resolution.

Shipping

Fast Shipping: we will choose DHL, UPS, FedEx etc to deliver it. Usually you will get your package within 7-14 days.

  • Fast Shipping(amount ≧ 199USD) for free
  • Fast Shipping(amount < 199USD) : $20.00 (We do not provide free shipping from now on.)

Introduction

  1. It will take around 60-90 days for shipment via ePacket/China Post Registered Air Mail/EMS, which can’t be guaranteed due to force majeure. If you can’t get the air mail package after 2months, please let us know ASAP: info@zwoptical.com
  2. Customers from Brazil and Chile should leave a message to provide your CPF or CNPJ as your custom needs it.
  3. Customers from Russia need to provide the complete English name with three words as well as the English shipping address.

Tracking site

DGM: http://webtrack.dhlglobalmail.com/?locale=en-US

China air mail: http://www.17track.net/en

 

Tax

  • The price list on our website is USD without tax.
  • Please note that buyers are liable to pay tax involved, such as Import tax, VAT , customs handling fee, etc. The additional fees may be collected at time of delivery by courier.
  • For best local service we advise customers buy our cameras form local dealers.

Warranty and Return Policy

1. ZWO will provide a 2-year free warranty service (Warranty Period) for ZWO products purchased by Users from ZWO (“Products”) in accordance with this Policy, commencing on the day following receipt of the Products by Users. For ASIAIR Plus users, commencing on the day of device activation.

2. If a User encounters the following Dead on Arrival (DOA) and contacts ZWO within the corresponding time limit to issue the Product purchase invoice and relevant evidence, ZWO will provide door-to-door pick-up service and, as appropriate, after-sale replacement (or partial replacement), repair or return (or partial return) service for the following Products:
1) Product quality problem
Provided that a User detects a quality problem and contacts ZWO within 30 days after receipt of the Products, and ZWO support team confirms that the Products indeed have a quality problem or defect after their inspection, ZWO will provide free replacement service towards such Products;
2) Product transportation problem
Provided that a User finds obvious signs of bubbling, serious overstocking, or deformation on the outer package of the Products upon receipt of the Products, and provides ZWO with pictures of the outer package and proof of receipt within 3 days after receipt of such Products, ZWO support team will verify the actual shipper and determine the responsible party for such transportation problem. In the event that ZWO is the actual shipper, ZWO will be responsible for providing the relevant return or replacement service, however, if the Products are directly sold or transported to the User by an agent of ZWO, the agent will be responsible for providing the relevant return or replacement service.

3. If the Products are under the following circumstances, they are not within the scope of warranty service, ZWO may provide maintenance services to the Users:
1) The Warranty Period of the Products has expired; or
2) The Products are injected into liquid or affected by moisture or corrosion; or
3) The Products are damaged by an external force (such as the broken of the camera protection window glass, the deformation of the product shell, the broken of the USB port, etc.); or
4) Disassembling, repairing by a third party, refurbishment of the Products (such as downloading erroneous firmware) without the written authorization of ZWO; or
5) The product system is modified, or the maintenance notice is lost or changed; or
6) Product quality problem caused by installation not following the requirements or instructions for the Products; or
7) Physical damage or failure of the Products caused by the force majeure (such as strong vibration or extrusion such as flood, fire, earthquake, or thunder stroke); or
8)Damage caused by the improper User operation during the period of shooting or use, such as using without the equipment protection or direct shooting of the sun; or
9) No valid purchase invoice or warranty certificate; or
10) The Products are second-hand products.
Any quality problem with the accessories or other parts of the Products is not a condition for the return or change of the Products, and the User may solely request to replace the accessories with new ones, which shall be handled after verification by ZWO support team.
If the issue with your ZWO product was caused by certain damage (such as severe damage not covered by the 2-year warranty), you might have to pay the replacement value.

4. For the normal repair or replacement of the Products during the Warranty Period, the User will bear the return cost. When returning the Products, Users shall specify the actual reasons for the damage to the Products, and shall provide the corresponding valid certificates, such as pictures or videos, etc.
For the Products that need to be replaced after being confirmed by ZWO in writing, the User shall return the Products with the complete package, together with all accessories, manuals, etc., to the address designated by ZWO.
By sending back the product to ZWO, the User agrees to pay out-of-warranty fees that may arise during the repair process of the product. ZWO will send back the product after charging.

5. If a User encounters any problem during the use of ZWO Products, you may at any time contact ZWO for technical support via ZWO Support.

For the Products that need to be returned for after-sales service, ZWO will provide the corresponding RMA code for reference.
ZWO will not accept any products having no RMA code that have been returned privately without ZWO written confirmation.

6. If a User purchases the ZWO Products from a ZWO agent, the User may contact the ZWO agent directly for the relevant after-sales service.

Our website is always updated with the most recent camera drivers as well as software for DSO and planetary imaging. Please make sure the most recent driver and software has been installed before you start shooting:

It is also recommended to read the Manuals first before shooting.

Do you have question, answer or comment? Post here!

  1. Avatar

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    Hi Sean

    I purchased the gorgeous asi 294 and i’d like to use it also with my olympus micro zuiko lense or other micro 43 lense.

    I purchased the T2/ micro 43 adapter: https://astronomy-im…er-for-asi1600

    and i put my mzuiko 12-100 lense on it.

    I can’t reach focus with manual focus, neither at 12 mm, nor at 100 mm: and at 100 mm the focus becomes worse.

    I tried to remove the glass protection window from asi294 but nothing changed. I couldn’t focus with this lense in manual mode.

    Does anyone here use a micro 43 lense on asi294, expecially a mzuiko lense?

    Thanks so much

    Andrea




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      Hi Andy, remove protective glass is not useful. Depand on your descirption, the lens need close to sensor to get focus, but there is no way to make it closer. Did you already remove 11mm T2 ring of camera?




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    I removed the glass protecting window and nothing happened: cannot reach focus with a olympus mzuiko 12-100 lense…




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      Could you tell me too long or too short can’t reach the focus?




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    Hello
    I start with my 294 mc pro and I would like to have a good explanation on the curves of this camera. Can you explain them?
    Thank you




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      Which curve would you like to know?




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    Just double-checking: the optical window of the camera is *NOT* an “IR Cut-off” filter?
    I would like to use this for doing spectroscopy in the near-infrared (700nm – 1000nm) as well as the visible (400nm – 700nm), so the window has to be clear, not a cut-off. Also: by “Operating temperature” you mean the ambient operating temperature, of course? Ie, the sensor can be cooled to -45C (if ambient is -5C) ? -Thanks




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      Yes, It not IR-cut filter on the camera, Delta-T is 40degree, your exemple is correct.




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  5. Avatar

    (verified owner):

    Hi, what’s the correct backfocus distance when using a C8 with a f6.3 reducer?

    For your camera should be 55mm, but for a C8 with reducer, as far as i know, is recommended to be 105mm.

    Which one should i use?




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      We just provide a 55mm reference, the real back focus length depand on the reducer itself. In this case, I think you need add another 50mm extender at the front of imaging train.




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  6. Avatar

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    Hello ZWO

    Any plans (if it is even possible) to improve the cooling on this camera so that darks don’t need to be taken with each imaging session? I have seen a live demo of this camera and it is quite impressive. I am looking at using this camera at doing some lucky style imaging (not EAA) on some large aperture telescopes. My club has an 18 inch Newt and the Museum I volunteer for has a 36 inch RC.




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      Yes, we will improve it. Thanks for mention that!




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  7. Avatar

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    Sir
    1)Which camera (asi294mc pro or asi1600mc pro) is better for taking exposure upto 10min for deep sky.
    2)can I run these camera and the software in my windows 7 professional 32 bit laptop?




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      ASI1600MC Pro is good for long exposure, the camera have lower read noise at gain=0.




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  8. Avatar

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    sir
    i have a 6” newtonian reflector with foval length of 750mm and resolving power of 0.8 arc seconds. what will be the FOV if i use asi294mc pro with my telescope. also give me the FOV obtained by asi1600mc pro used with my telescope




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      150F5 + ASI294, 0.993Degree*1.459Degree
      150f5 + ASI1600,1.023Degree*1.352degree




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    OK. My laptop is too old to load the driver for the 294mc pro. Can you advise me as to how much computer I should have to run the camera successfully. Thanks




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      I recommend i5/i7
      8GB RAM
      128G-256 SSD or 500-1000GB HD
      USB3.0 port




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    Just purchased a 294mc pro from agena astro. For some reason my laptop will not let me download the driver from your web site. Without a disk, how should I proceed.




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      I think you need to disable anti-virus software or firewall.
      And also can send me a email to support(at)zwoptical.com to get latest drivers.




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  11. Avatar

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    Hello
    I continue my tests with my 294mc and I really have problems with it. I tried to make M82 with my newton 200/1000, I checked my collimation, the focus and everything was good. For taking pictures I made 80 poses of 160s with a gain of 180 and the result is really disappointing. Do you have any advice on camera settings to give me ???
    Here is a photo treated with Pixinsight.

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/mGFXYPUB4FbhETcHA




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      Debayer pattern is RGGB. Please check this at first. Then, do you follow the introduction of Pixinsight to balance the background.
      I think processing is the key, I don’t saw any hardware issue from your image.




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  12. Avatar

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    Hi Sean, i’am new in astrophotografy. I live in Argentina (southern hemisphere)
    I have a Celestron AVX MOUNT with an 8” Edge HD OTA, a Celestron 0.7 reducer, an Hyperstar lens and an ASI174MC planetary camera. Which do you think is the best camera for DSO. The ASI1600MC Pro or the ASI294MC Pro ??. I’am travelling to the USA In august and have a single shoot to buy the camera. Thanks for your time and excuse my poor english.




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      294MC Pro will be better choice. 294MC Pro have higher sensitivity and HCG mode( High dynamic range under gain120).




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  13. Avatar

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    Hi,
    Hello I tried, but even in daylight the picture lacks color it looks like it is missing the green
    You can see my picture:
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/WfFbGv1Z8mWJZPMr1




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      It’s because the 294 camera is not IR-cut, you need a IR-cut filter to get more nature color.




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  14. Avatar

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    Hi,
    I have a problem with my camera 294 mc pro. I use sharpcap software with but my images are black and white. Is there a setting to make?




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      Please use RGB24 color space option in Sharpcap to have direct color images.
      Or you can convert RAW B/W images to color by processing softwares.




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  15. Avatar

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    SORRY FORGOT SOME DATA YOU CAN DELETE THE FIRST MESSAGE

    Hello ZWO guys!

    I want a OSC from ZWO, I am between ASI294 and ASI071. Below a summary of the data I am comparing.
    QE: ASI294=75, ASI071=50 >> Winner ASI294
    RN: ASI294=1.8 (for DR=13), ASI071=2.7 (for DR=13) >> Winner ASI294
    DC: ASI294<0.05 (for T=-10°C), ASI071> Winner ASI071

    Independently from pixel and chip size, which is the best of these 2 cameras, considering the mix of QE, RN and DC for my APO 500mm f/5 and 840mm f/7 ??

    BTW I have a very good mount and can make long precise exposures.

    Thanks for your support!
    Martin




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  16. Avatar

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    Hello ZWO guys!

    I want a OSC from ZWO, I am between ASI294 and ASI071. Below a summary of the data I am comparing.
    QE: ASI294=75, ASI071=50 >> Winner ASI294
    RN: ASI294=1.8 (for DR=13), ASI071=2.7 (for DR=13) >> Winner ASI294
    DC: ASI294<0.05 (for T=-10°C), ASI071> Winner ASI071

    Independently from pixel and chip size, which is the best of these 2 cameras, considering the mix of QE, RN and DC for my APO 500mm f/5 and 840mm f/7 ??

    BTW I have a very good mount and can make long precise exposures.

    Thanks for your support!
    Martin




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      Hi Martin
      I think ASI071 is a good choise. It is very good for long precise exposures and wider FOV. ASI294 is better for short exposure and Live stacking(EAA).




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  17. Avatar

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    Hi Sam
    I just bought the camera and it is on the way from the dealer. However, while I am waiting for it, I read several forums stating that the camera has problems with red and green casts at the edge of the frame due to amp glow since the cold finger can’t cool down the entire sensor. So the camera works better at high gain and very short exposures (less than 2 min). Does it still the same? I am afraid that I could not go deeper into the small faint objects with that type of short exposures. Would you recommend to go to the ASI 1600 MC insted? I already have the mono version that I use exclusively for narrow band and works wonderful. Thank you




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      Hi Rodrigo, I reply about it in emails. I quote at here for other customers:
      We have some suggestion about use ASI294MC Pro:
      1. take calibrate frames(dark/bias) in same night after you finished all light frames, same or similar environment temp will keep better consistancy. If take dark in another day, please make sure the environment temp is not too much higher.
      2. Don’t let the cooling power reach 90%-100%, we think about 50%-75% will be a wise choice, which means don’t turn the target temp too low than ambient temp.
      3. Preprocessing in Pixinsight will be a good choice, pixinsight have many useful parameters and algorithm to calibrate and stack the images quite well.
      I think in the post, Andy finally took some great pictures. It’s some tricks in every cameras, I think everybody need some time to know about their camera then use it well.




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  18. Avatar

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    Is it possible to remove the flash in software – a special driver?




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      Do you mean the amp-glow? No, it’s can’t be done.




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  19. Avatar

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    Hi,
    I would like to know if the 294MC PRO is well suited for my 200/1000 telescope.




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      Yes, it is. You can use it on your telescope.




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  20. Avatar

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    Hi there,

    I am interested in lucky imaging due to heavy light pollution and limited time. So far, I am quite happy imaging DSOs with many short exposures of between 10 to 20 seconds and stacking them with the usual dark, flat and bias frames. These are the equipment that I currently use;

    – WO GT71 with 0.8 focal reducer
    – Celestron C6 with 0.63 focal reducer
    – SW AZ-EQ5 mount
    – Olympus OM-D E-M1
    – ASI178MC
    – Astronomik CLS filter (depending on which part of the sky I am imaging)

    May I know which OSC camera will be better suited for lucky imaging and/or short exposure like what I am currently doing, ASI294MC Pro or ASI183MC Pro?

    Thanks in advance.




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      Hi Paul. It’s hard for me to recommand the best one between ASI294PRO and ASI183PRO,294 have HCG mode, you can get same big dynamic range at gain120. Maybe this one is better for lucky imaging.




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