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  1. #1
    rshal's Avatar
    rshal Guest

    Default What CCD camera will mount to the Meade LX200?



    Hey, planning on getting the Meade LX200 12” GPS scope and would like
    to do some CCD photography. Anyone know what CCD cameras will work
    with this scope? Also need to make sure I have a camera mount
    (adaptor) to attach to the scope. I’m upgrading from the Meade 8” and
    would like to not spend more than $1000 on the camera.



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  2. #2
    Roger Hamlett's Avatar
    Roger Hamlett Guest

    Default What CCD camera will mount to the Meade LX200?


    "rshal" <robert@hungrylizards-dot-com.no-spam.invalid> wrote in message
    news:40156b19$1_1@127.0.0.1...
    You can mount just about any camera to any scope!. Now that having been
    said, there _are_ some qualifications, but not many!. To use a camera 'prime
    focus', it has to be possible to remove the existing lens (assuming there is
    one), and the focus range of the scope has to be large enough to allow the
    focal plane to be aligned to the the CCD inside the camera. The last is
    pretty easy with an SCT. The former is possible with every 'astronomical'
    CCD, and any 'SLR' type digital camera. Afocal operation, is also possible
    with cameras where you can't remove the lens.
    Basically, I think you have to 'qualify' your question a little. At present,
    it is along the lines of 'I want to use a wheel on this bicycle'...

    Best Wishes



  3. #3
    onegod's Avatar
    onegod Guest

    Default What CCD camera will mount to the Meade LX200?

    I dont think he has to... I think you need to focus your answer with some
    example of good camera in $500-1000 range.


    "Roger Hamlett" <rogerspamignored@ttelmah.demon.co.uk> wrote in message
    news:JleRb.11557$YV1.3208@newsfep4-winn.server.ntli.net...
    'prime
    is
    present,



  4. #4
    Roger Hamlett's Avatar
    Roger Hamlett Guest

    Default What CCD camera will mount to the Meade LX200?


    "onegod" <spamone@msn.com> wrote in message
    news:7reRb.16155$cu6.11540@twister.socal.rr.com...
    Except he says 'CCD camera'. This actually restricts the range to basically
    astronomical CCD's, or to some modified webcams. I _suspect_ he is asking
    what 'non astronomical' digital cameras (as opposed to CCD's) can be used,
    but it is not what he says....

    Best Wishes

    there
    the
    'astronomical'
    possible



  5. #5
    rshal's Avatar
    rshal Guest

    Default More info

    OK, let me word it differently. Currently I have a Meade4 LX90
    reflector scope (8”). Next month I’m going to get the LS200 12”
    scope and would like to do some photography with it. I would like to
    use a CCD camera, mainly because results can be viewed almost
    immediately. I would like a new CCD camera that us under $1000 and
    has resolution around 5 or 6 mexapixels. Also would like to use the
    camera to take regular pictures of whatever. And it would be nice if
    I was able to zoom in/out while connected to the telescope.

    So the question is: What CCD camera would be a good choice to use with
    this telescope?



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  6. #6
    Llanzlan Klazmon The 15th's Avatar
    Llanzlan Klazmon The 15th Guest

    Default More info

    robert@hungrylizards-dot-com.no-spam.invalid (rshal) wrote in
    news:40158713_1@127.0.0.1:


    Depends what you want to photograph. A webcam works just fine for planet
    & moon photo's. If you are talking long exposure deep sky stuff, no
    consumer camera will be of much use. CCD chips require cooling to be of
    any use for long exposure work. 6 Megapixel self cooled camera's are not
    cheap. Take a look at the SBIG or APOGEE (www.sbig.com or www.ccd.com)
    web sites.

    L.




  7. #7
    Roger Hamlett's Avatar
    Roger Hamlett Guest

    Default More info


    "rshal" <robert@hungrylizards-dot-com.no-spam.invalid> wrote in message
    news:40158713_1@127.0.0.1...
    In a sense, you probably have to forget CCD's!...
    99% of current 'digital cameras', don't use CCD's. CCD's have better noise
    behaviour in low light (which makes them great for astronomy), but are more
    expensive/pixel, than 'CMOS' sensors. Hence the consumer digital cameras on
    the market now are allmost entirely CMOS based.
    Starting at the cheapest end:
    1) Webcams. Small sensors, and a few are still CCD based. Cheap. Great for
    planetary imaging. Can be modified, using a variety of electronic/hardware
    mods, to make them even better suited to astronomy. Fully modified versions,
    can match the performance of the best CCD cameras from the early days of CCD
    astronomy, but require a lot of work. Look at www.qcuiag.co.uk, or the
    qcuiag group on yahoo.
    2) Normal digital cameras. These will use CMOS sensors. Cheapest will need
    to be mounted afocally, and in this mode can be 'zoomed'. However this is
    not really a gain (adding a lot more glass to the light path is never a good
    thing...). Most models will only offer relatively short exposures, and noise
    from the sensor will start to degrade the images of anything but relatively
    bright objects. Slightly more expensive models (SLR's), can be mounted for
    prime focus imaging. The Canon models (in particular the 10D), have the
    reputation of possessing the _best_ CMOS sensors in existence, giving noise
    levels that a few years ago would only have been achievable by CCD's. Again
    only relatively brighter objects can be well imaged with these, but the
    Canon's in particular, are achieving results, that really do show how
    excellent they are. There is a Yahoo group specialising in such digital
    imaging as well. Generally, the '5 or 6 megapixel' cameras on the market,
    sell, for less than a CCD of this size _on it's own_ would cost. Hence you
    do need to forget CCD's...
    3) Astronomical CCD's. These have a number of special features that make
    them sigificantly better for this work, but these come at a 'cost' (in terms
    of money...). The first is that in allmost all cases the cameras are cooled.
    This allows much longer exposures without noise being such a problem. The
    second is that the A/D converters normally have a much higher range than
    normal cameras, allowing dimmer objects to be recorded on the same frame
    with brighter objects. The third, is that the sensors themselves are a lot
    more sensitive. Their problem is simply cost...

    If you are content to image planets, and/or take 'widefield' images of
    relatively brighter objects, with fairly short exposures, definately look at
    the Canon digital cameras. If you want to go 'deeper', then you will have to
    face a number of hurdles. The first is that the scope will then have to be
    polar aligned (otherwise field rotation will become a problem on images).
    This will apply even with the longest exposures on cameras like the Canons.
    The 'Digital Rebel', might well fit your budget and needs. Then you have the
    problem that for exposure lengths of more than a few seconds, the scope will
    have to be 'guided', since the basic tracking accuracy will not be good
    enough. An astronomical CCD, will 'see' to depths that only a few years ago
    was totally the reserve of professional scopes, pushing several magnitudes
    beyond the 'visual' limits for your scope. The best 'value', as an 'all in
    one' package, was a number of ST7 cameras being offered at the tail end of
    last year from SBIG, but even these were close to $2000. These may have 'all
    gone' now. Beyond this, the price starts to get somewhat extreme, though
    there are some cheap and very useable small cameras around (for instance, a
    second hand Starlight MX5C, could be a fabulous buy).
    Forget being able to 'view the results immediately!'. Though on the digital
    cameras you can see the result of an image, the full effect is only
    available after a lot of post processing to combine several images, and
    other work. Typically, and image that takes an hour of photography, may well
    require two to three hours of work as a minimum, before an acceptable result
    is achieved..
    You will either need a laptop, or a very large memory card in the camera as
    well, especially if you want to see the images. The Canon models in
    particular (and a couple of the Nikon cameras), are taking excellent images.
    With a suitable mounting adapter, one of these, is probably going to be the
    best bet for your needs. I'd suggest joining the Yahoo group, and seeing the
    results and problems being reported, before making your final decision.

    Best Wishes





  8. #8
    Jeroen Smaal's Avatar
    Jeroen Smaal Guest

    Default More info


    "Roger Hamlett" <rogerspamignored@ttelmah.demon.co.uk> wrote in message
    news:bYqRb.11911$YV1.10629@newsfep4-winn.server.ntli.net...

    on

    I think you need to brush up on your knowledge of consumer digital cameras.
    I have not been able to find a single >$150 digital camera that does NOT
    have a CCD sensor (browse around on http://www.dpreview.com if you don't
    believe me).

    The exception off course are the Canon 10D and 300D which have extremely
    low-noise CMOS sensors that are very suitable for astrophotography (see the
    postings by Stephen Pitt in sci.astro.amateur). The Canon 300D will also
    nicely fit the Original Poster's budget.

    Jeroen.




  9. #9
    Roger Hamlett's Avatar
    Roger Hamlett Guest

    Default More info


    "Jeroen Smaal" <js_news@REMOVE-THIS.zippy.xs4all.nl> wrote in message
    news:4016473f$0$327$e4fe514c@news.xs4all.nl...
    cameras.
    I have to disagree.
    The problem is that many cameras say 'CCD', when they are CMOS...
    Seriously, look at the industry sales of CCD's, versus CMOS, and you will
    find that the total worldwide sales of CCD sensors last year, for the larger
    sizes, represented less that 1/4 the number of digital cameras sold.
    CCD sensors, are largely used (in MegaPixel sizes), on older cameras that
    were launched a few years ago, as 'professional' models, and with
    corresponding price tags.

    the
    Minolta use CMOS, Nikon use CMOS, Canon use CMOS, even Kodak use CMOS
    sensors in all their recently launched consumer cameras. If you check the
    'part numbers' for the
    sensors used, you will find that CMOS is ruling.
    Kodak, are actually 'cutting back' on their CCD production, because CMOS
    sensors are so much more popular.
    I agree on the 300D.

    Best Wishes




  10. #10
    rshal's Avatar
    rshal Guest

    Default Thanks guys

    Thanks for the comments; I’m now looking into the Canon EOS 300D. But
    will I be able to take pictures of nebulas with this camera? IE: how
    long of an exposure (seconds) can I set it to to achieve an
    expectable image?



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