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Thread: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

  1. #1
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    Default Great deal on a 720x480 camera



    I saw this deal on Woot! today:

    Center Point Mountable Video Cam

    Woot! is a "daily deals" site, so the deal will be expired on March 27.

    Anyhow, it's a mountable video camera that can shoot MJPEG video at 720x480 resolution. The camera is compact and has a round body, which suggests that it might just require some minor modifications to get it to mount in a 1.25" focuser. If that's the case, then it might make a very good planetary cam, as you wouldn't need a computer to record the frames.

    Alternatively, it might make a very good afocal camera. It's got 1/4-20 threads on the back, and a mounting shoe on the bottom that should make it relatively easy to get it positioned properly in front of an eyepiece. The purpose of the camera (recording your paintball adventures) suggests that it's probably set with a fixed focus at infinity.

    At $40, it might be worth buying for some planetary photography experiments.
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  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to skaven For This Useful Post:

    Makuser (03-26-2013),MG877 (03-26-2013),olddogg60 (03-26-2013)

  3. #2
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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    That might be just the ticket Skaven. Nice find.
    Bill

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Hello Skaven. This looks like a very good deal on a camera that could be quite adaptable for luna/planetary imaging on the cheap. Thanks for the heads up and link, and best of regards.
    - Marshall

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    I have one on the way. If it doesn't work out I guess that I will have to buy a paintball gun.
    Bill

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Quote Originally Posted by olddogg60 View Post
    I have one on the way. If it doesn't work out I guess that I will have to buy a paintball gun.
    Cool! Be sure to post a review once you start tinkering with it.

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Quote Originally Posted by skaven View Post
    Cool! Be sure to post a review once you start tinkering with it.
    Will do. I like the idea of not needing a laptop hooked up. We will see how focusing goes though. Or did you mean the paintball gun.
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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Well, I have the camera. I'm still thinking about how to mount it. I could buy a paintball gun and duct tape it to my scope. The only micro SD that I have doesn't have much capacity. I have 32 GB card on the way. That should do it. I believe Skaven was going to tell me how to get this into focus.
    Bill

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Quote Originally Posted by olddogg60 View Post
    I believe Skaven was going to tell me how to get this into focus
    I'd try using it afocally first -- figure out how to strap it to a long-focus eyepiece (32mm or something). Assuming the camera has a fixed focus at infinity, you should be able to focus at the eyepiece (if you wear glasses, wear them when focusing). Then lock the focuser and strap the camera on, and hit record.

    If you want to try using prime focus, you'll have to disassemble the lens assembly to expose the CCD, then figure out how to mount the camera in the focuser tube with the CCD centered. Focusing would have to be accomplished by snapping photos and observing them on your computer. Hopefully you can do that by using the USB connection to get an instant response (or even better: a live view) from the camera.

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    Default Re: Great deal on a 720x480 camera

    Quote Originally Posted by skaven View Post
    I'd try using it afocally first -- figure out how to strap it to a long-focus eyepiece (32mm or something). Assuming the camera has a fixed focus at infinity, you should be able to focus at the eyepiece (if you wear glasses, wear them when focusing). Then lock the focuser and strap the camera on, and hit record.

    If you want to try using prime focus, you'll have to disassemble the lens assembly to expose the CCD, then figure out how to mount the camera in the focuser tube with the CCD centered. Focusing would have to be accomplished by snapping photos and observing them on your computer. Hopefully you can do that by using the USB connection to get an instant response (or even better: a live view) from the camera.
    The problem is that you can't view other then downloading the video. I was thinking about EP projection and focusing as you are saying, where you would focus for eye glasses. I have an EP projection mount and I'm going to look at mounting the camera to that. I have been experimenting with old disassembled EP's. The camera has a zoom feature and I don't know if that would be a help or a hindrance. I will try it out on some terrestrial viewing today. The camera also has audio so I had better plug the mic hole to cut down on recording the swearing.
    Bill

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