- don’t make your camera the highest thing around. My dome was showing scratches. Eventually I got a nice photo of the inside of a juvenile bald eagle’s talon. A bird’s gonna perch where a bird’s gonna perch. Sacrifice some sky and put a better perch next to it.
- the manual focus cameras seem to be temperature dependent. Maybe get something that can be auto focused or add a heater to control night time lows.
- for long exposure low light work, you may find you get much better pictures in very cold weather. This relates to charge leakage in the sensor. If you decide to try keeping your sensor cold, consider condensation. Maybe have something in there that is colder.
- also for long exposures, the noise in the image from leakage tends to be device pixel specific. You can make a dark view map at a given temperature and use it to denoise your images. You’ll need a shutter though, or do something clever with multiple frames as stars move around to get “darkest sample” or something
I started with the color camera, but had to give up on any real meteor detection due to the amount of light pollution, and the fact that I live directly in line with the airport in Louisville. I built the second monochrome version, since the monochrome versions are roughly 3x as sensitive, hoping it'd be better at detecting meteors at shorter exposure lengths. But it still required exposures of a few seconds, much longer that you're typical meteor. So, now I just have two all sky cameras doing 20 second exposures. The monochrome one will still pull out the Milky Way from my Bortle 7/8 skies, so I just like the pictures it takes and don't plan to change it.
Their "HQ" camera is really a LOW quality camera with a shitty sensor that isn't even micro-four-thirds. The lens choices are abysmal. I want to see at LEAST APS-C or better yet full frame. Considering a full-blown mirrorless full frame camera costs $2400 it shouldn't cost more than $1000 for sensor only, and I'm 1000% willing to pay for a hackable, programmable full frame sensor especially for night sky photography that can accept the vast variety of full frame lenses already available.
There's the Sony QX1 which comes close to what I want but sadly they didn't continue that or produce them anymore.
Although you can buy cheap Starvis modules you don't have full control over the exposure time and/or can only shoot in a compressed format. The HQ camera is well-supported with good drivers, like all Raspberry Pi hardware, which is why people still use the HQ Camera for cheap astronomy projects despite having a small sensor and poor low-light performance.
When your full frame sensor has 25X the physical area as a small sensor, that's hard to beat. You can't easily get a 25X increase in number of photons collected on the smaller sensor. There are only so many photons that hit it. You can engineer the hell out of the silicon, but the fill factor multiplied by quantum efficiency of the sensors is already much higher than 1/25 so there is no theoretical room for a 25X improvement even under ideal assumptions. You can increase the number of photons that hit it with bigger, larger aperture lenses, but beyond f/2.0 or so you start hitting limits with our current optical technology in correcting chromatic aberration and other issues, and it will take miracles to get a 25X improvement on the latest state-of-the-art optics.
Sony's full frame sensors also have the same back-illuminated design as their Starvis-branded sensors, by the way, so that part is not unique to Starvis.
If you take an IMX585 astronomy camera it will produce a better quality image than any used or new DSLR in the same price range, despite having pixels a fraction of the size. The (considerable) negative side is the smaller frame.
This is why everyone who wants better sensor buys a camera and attaches it to Raspberry Pi.
I am surprised that there isn't a 1" camera module, that is natural place for better sensor but still fits on board and could use C-mount lenses.
In my case, I simply can't stand the raspberry pi's camera connector so I buy my own "industrial machine vision" cameras with C-mount. In my case I found the Mindvision line to be the best, I connect with either USB3 or GigE (both of which are much nicer cables than the Pi camera connector) and use the Mindvision SDK (it's not a uvc device, instead you write some python that interacts with the camera, giving you deep level of control).
He has a bunch of interviews at https://technicalillustrators.org/ (which he co-founded) but I didn't find an interview of him.
On his blog in 2014 he notes in passing some of the tools he uses.
This project looks really promising, especially if it has an ascom driver
It seems like deploying these in pairs at a minimum would make sense. In addition to adding spatial information, it gives you a backup for any observations at all.
The illustrations are great. Reminded me of how the storage disk from the starhinge in Stephenson's Anathem must have looked.
Like Meta’s SAM.
I'm not aware of anything that can, say, identify a meteor and differentiate it from a plane or satellite, but I'm sure it's possible.
The Sun is actually pretty small (1/2 a degree), and the image of the Sun will only occupy a given pixel for about 2 minutes. The next day, the declination of the Sun will change, there may be some overlap in the pixels it falls on. But over the course of a year, the amount of time a given pixel will see the actual image of the sun is pretty short, likely less than 10 minutes for the worst case near the solstice. And the pixels getting it near the equinox will probably only get hit for 4 minutes a year, and some not at all. So they're not really taking the beating it may seem.
Don't forget the default lens is tiny. It doesn't really capture a ton of light.
I have every official Pi camera, and they are all just terrible. I would never use them for anything artistic, when it's easy to get far-superior results from even a cheap regular camera or used SLR.
I'm just curious if there's a very-high-quality camera with a MIPI interface. Thinking it through... I only really care about video. Even if it's only HD resolution, something with excellent light sensitivity & low noise would be great.
No there isn't. Sorry. I've tried them all and their dynamic range sucks so bad....
Anyway, who thinks otherwise, I recommend you see the same non-ideally lit scene with for example a modern "analog" fpv camera like Foxeer Nano Toothless 2 (a starlight 0.1lux camera that maintains it's great dynamic range in full sun).
The only mipi camera that has a shred of a chance to compete is starvis IMX327LQR. On paper it should be pretty good. I'm planning to test one at some point.
Also, the cameras built into various Cctv Ip cameras one can buy from China are pretty good, but good luck getting them to work with anything other than the original equipment.
Tangent to your IP-camera comment: I replaced all my old SD, composite household security cameras with cheap-O TVI cameras, and I am impressed at how well this oddball HD format works over the same coax cables.
So you're stuck with the little optics included with the tiny hobby cameras from Pi or ArduCam (et all). They're okay for some purposes but a lot worse than even a cheap SLR/Mirrorless lens.
The best results I've gotten are with the C-mount camera module, an adapter, and a wide angle Sony, Nikon, or Canon lens—all of which cost in the hundreds :)
I know there are excellent C-mount lenses, because I shot a great-looking movie on a Bolex with them.