Meade Deep Sky Imager Pros
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MONOCHROME CCD ASTRO-IMAGER The new Deep Sky Imager PRO is the latest innovation from Meade Instruments. The Deep Sky Imager PRO is 2.3 times more sensitive and has 4 times the resolution of the color Deep Sky Imager. It is a high-performance, easy-to-use monochrome CCD camera that allows every astronomer to shoot and process stunning deep sky photographs of galaxies, nebulae, star clusters and planets. This CCD camera is designed with the intermediate to advanced amateur astrophotographer in mind. Purchase the new Deep Sky Imager PRO with our high quality RGB filter set and produce stunning RGB and LRGB images.High Sensitivity Monochrome CCD Sensor from Sony® - The Meade Deep Sky Imager utilizes Sony's ExView HAD™ Monochrome CCD Image Sensor Technology for incredible low noise and higher dynamic range featuring a 16-Bit A/D converter. USB 2.0 High Speed - Featuring a fast USB 2.0 High Speed connection. This will allow fast data transfer. The actual download time for daytime or planetary imaging is up to 5 frames per second. For longer exposures the download time is 1/2 a second in order to sustain a higher signal-to-noise ratio. There is virtually no delay between the time the image is taken and when it appears on your computer screen. The Deep Sky Imager PRO is also backward compatible with USB 1.1. Exclusive Features of the New Meade Deep Sky Imager Pro! Drizzle Developed by NASA for the Hubble Space Telescope, Drizzle has features that can dramatically increase the resolution and field of view of the Deep Sky Imager Pro's CCD chip. When the object being imaged would normally call for a bigger chip camera, the astrophotographer can enable the Drizzle feature, which can produce and effective 4.9 mega pixel camera from the Deep Sky Imager Pro's 640x480 CCD chip, but only with Meade AutoStar controlled telescopes. It may seem that we are exaggerating, so here are the numbers: If a user selects Drizzle and inputs the value of 2 in the Drizzle 'Extended View' setting (effectively making a 2x2 mosaic), and a value of 2 in the 'Drizzle Resolution' (which takes multiple undersampled dithered shots of the object and reconstructs the image at higher resolution), they will end up with a picture that is 2560 pixels by 1920 pixels or 4,915,200 pixels. The uncompressed RAM file (in FITS format) will be approximately 10 megabytes. Drizzle is not simply enlarging the image as in interpolation. We move the telescope which in turn moves the image across the CCD sensor to perform seamless precision mosaics. In the Drizzle Settings dialog box you have three options, 'Drizzle Resolution', 'Extended View', and 'Pixel Fraction'. Here is what happens as you change each setting: Drizzle Resolution: By increasing the Drizzle Resolution number (maximum value 2), the image resolution is higher creating bigger image scale. It looks like the image is simply enlarged, but in fact by taking multiple undersampled dithered shots of the object it reconstructs the image at higher resolution. Notice the Drizzle Size increase from 640x480 to 1248x936, and the final image size being 1248, 936. To accomplish this increase in resolution, we move the AutoStar controlled telescope a small amount and take an image, again and again reading out fractions of each pixel and then reconstructing the image. Extended View: By increasing the value to a maximum of 2 (effectively making a 2x2 mosaic) Here we move the telescope in small precision movements, pause to take an image, and then repeating the action to make a seamless mosaic. This increases the true field of view of the image. Notice the outer frame has increased showing the effective field coverage and the file size has changed from 640, 480 to 1280, 960 Pixel Fractions: By adjusting the Pixel Fraction size to a value smaller than 1 (minimum setting is .20), it sets the size of the pixel fraction that is downloaded from each pixel as the exposure is made. Using a smaller pixel fraction will increase the image resolution. While the final image size does not change with finer settings, the final image will be sharper. See the diagram with the smaller blue pixel fraction within each single pixel outlined in red in the illustration below: Field De-Rotation: Instead of just tracking and stacking images by following the movements of one star, the Deep Sky Imager Pro's Envisage Software with Drizzle will track and stack images locked on two stars, and can correct for image rotation that occurs if the telescope is tracking in the Altazimuth configuration, or in a roughly polar aligned telescope. Using this feature, you can do a quick alignment of your Meade telescope in Altaz, turn on the Deep Sky Imager Pro, select Drizzle, and draw a box around each of two stars in the field. The resulting image will not show rotational star trails. Sony ExView HAD Monochrome CCD Sensor The original Meade Deep Sky Imager utilizes a Sony Super HAD Color CCD sensor that has many desirable characteristics including low noise and extended sensitivity. However, the monochrome ExView HAD CCD chip from Sony is 230% more sensitive and has an effective 400% more resolution over the current color Deep Sky Imager CCD chip. This will allow fainter objects to be imaged with greater detail. Color Filter Slider Drawer Standard only with the Deep Sky Imager Pro is the slider filter drawer that can accept up to four standard size 1.25" filters, including the new Meade CCD Color Filter Set for the Deep Sky Imager Pro. Multiple Imager Operation - AutoStar Suite will now support any number of Deep Sky Imager and one LPI. You can now use a separate guide scope and Deep Sky Imager as well as have one for prime focus and wide field. Any of the imagers can be selected for guiding. The only limitation is computer speed and memory and available USB ports. A 2Ghz machine with 512 MBs of memory can easily run 3 Deep Sky Imagers. Convection Cooled - In order to draw heat away from the CCD sensor Meade uses a proprietary "Convection Cooling" design, allowing longer exposures with less noise. Less Noise Means More Data - You get all the data from your Deep Sky Imager without compression, and that means no loss of information in your raw images. No Compression, No Loss - You get all the data from your Deep Sky Imager without compression, and that means no loss of information in your raw images. So no matter if you take image for beauty or for science, Deep Sky Imager will give you the results you need. No Batteries Required - Just plug the Deep Sky Imager's USB 2.0 High Speed cable into your laptop and you are ready to image or autoguide. No other power supplies are needed. Autostar Suite™ Software - Camera control and image processing software is included, eliminating the need to purchase expensive after-market programs. Light Weight and Portable - Weighs only 10 ounces and is very compact, measuring only 3.25" x 3.25" x 1.25" with no need for additional balance weights. Versatile - Deep Sky Imager works on any telescope and can also be used as a sensitive and simple-to-use Autoguider. CCD Color Filter Set The new CCD color filter set is a high quality filter set made specifically for the new Deep Sky Imager PRO. These high quality Red, Green, Blue, and IR filters are 1.25" in diameter, parfocal and perfect for RGB and LRGB imaging. All four filters are made in the U.S.A. AutoStar Suite™ Software - Autostar Suite includes Sky Software, Image Capture Software, and Image processing Software, including these features: * Time Lapse photography tool Create movies of the rotation of Jupiter, moons transiting Jupiter, etc. * Auto and Manual exposure settings Let Deep Sky Imager optimize the exposure, or set it manually. * New Stretch Options Auto-stretch automatically brings out dim objects at short exposures. Optimizes the contrast of objects, with adjustable contrast settings. * Automatic Dark Subtraction Dark frames are automatically stacked and averaged, then subtracted giving you a clean image. * Automatically align and stack images using state-of-the-art techniques. * Magic Eye™ focus For super fast, no-hassle focusing. * Live histogram Helps you optimize for the best exposure. SPECIFICATIONS CCD Sensor High Sensitivity Sony® ExView HAD™ Monochrome CCD Sensor Pixels 510 x 492 pixels (250,000 pixels) Pixel Size (in microns) 9.6 microns (W) x 7.5 microns (H) A/D Conversion 16-bit (greater image depth and contrast) Min. - Max. Exposure Time 1/10,000 of a second to one hour Housing Anodized die-cast aluminum USB Compatibility High Speed 2.0 and 1.1 Size / Weight of product 3.25" x 3.25" x 1.25"/ 10 oz.