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Thread: CCD Resolution of Astrophotography One Shot Cameras (OSC) vs Monochromatic Cameras?

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    Question CCD Resolution of Astrophotography One Shot Cameras (OSC) vs Monochromatic Cameras?



    Hello everybody, I'm Timothy from Kansas City. I've been doing astrophotography with DSLRs for several years now and recently began looking into getting a CCD. I am wanting to get a monochrome to shoot Ha and such. My question is relating to the resolution of them. I have noticed the resolution of monochrome CCDs are painfully low compared to color CCDs of the same price range. Can anybody explain to me why this is?
    Last edited by admin; 05-16-2011 at 04:44 AM. Reason: title change

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    Interesting question. Which sensors are you referring to? Generally if the chips are the same size (pixel area and row/column count) a mono chip will have higher resultion than a color on because of the Bayer matrix used in color CCD's.

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    What I mean is, for example, the Orion StarShoot Deep Space Monochrome Image Camera III and their StarShoot Pro V2 color CCD are the same price but the color camera is 6MP but the monochrome is only 1MP!

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    That is a good question and the prices are similar, I looked they both have similar features from the same company - Orion.

    The next issue would be to have a comparison between the sensors:
    Sony ICX413AQ vs Sony ICX285AL

    I believe my OSC camera (QHY8L) has the cheaper interlaced Sony ICX413AQ, it has a Quantum Efficiency: 50% (60% for green).

    On the other hand the Sony ICX285AL has a Quantum Efficiency (max): 62% so that is at least partly why it may be more expensive as it has a better QE.

    for more on QE see:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_efficiency
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    They are very different sensors. If you compare the SBIG/QSI/Orion/others '8300' mono and color they appear very close in price and resolution / chip size - but then you need to buy filters and a filter wheel for mono imaging and that really skews things... I can't explain Orions pricing - but I was very happy when they announced the SSP line and their serious entry into the imaging market. As far as my last research into the different offerings, because of the need for filters, and filter wheels, mono imaging seems to be much more expensive than OSC - even with comparable imaging real estate.

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    The problem is that the monochrome camera doesn't come with any filters. I am looking for a monochrome camera in that price range (around $1,000 USD) but 1MP just isn't going to cut it. If it were 6MP like their color camera for the same price I would buy it in a heartbeat.

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    I agree, that is why I spent my money on a OSC (one shot color) camera. To buy 3 filters, RGB (red,green,blue) and then image 3 times for RGB, and process it to get the color picture was a bit too much money and time for me

    OSC is much more fun, the prices are good, the sensitivity and benefits of the ccd are there (including high S:N ratio) and much easier to setup, use and process. Not to mention cheaper (cheaper camera, no filters, filter wheel, motorized filter wheel).

    Also optical issues with extra filters, equipment and any glass in the light train are eliminated - leading to easier to obtain/better, & sharper images overall all else being equal.
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    Timothy,

    In your original post you mentiond wanting to image narrowband. I did try shooting NB using OIII and HA (with the SSPv2) and wasn't happy with the results.

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    Quote Originally Posted by klaatu2u View Post
    They are very different sensors. If you compare the SBIG/QSI/Orion/others '8300' mono and color they appear very close in price and resolution / chip size - but then you need to buy filters and a filter wheel for mono imaging and that really skews things... I can't explain Orions pricing - but I was very happy when they announced the SSP line and their serious entry into the imaging market. As far as my last research into the different offerings, because of the need for filters, and filter wheels, mono imaging seems to be much more expensive than OSC - even with comparable imaging real estate.
    If you were wanting to shoot using line filters, would you not end up with 1/4 the resolution and 1/4 or 1/2 the sensitivity (or less) using a OSC camera vs a monochrome due to having to do 2x2 binning?

    I would guess the camera price is the same since the camera body, electronics and cooler are common between the two, and the cost on the colour vs mono sensor is probably pretty similar.
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    Yes, if I used line filters on an OSC then I would get lower image quality. That's exactly why I don't want one. My original question was only relating to the resolution of them compared to monochrome. I'm just having trouble finding a 6-8MP monochrome camera for around $1000 like I can an OSC. I just can't weigh the benefits of an OSC with the price since I have a DSLR I have been imaging with. But all of the monochrome cameras I've seen around $1000 are approx. 1MP.

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