Might be of interest - M43-sensor based astro-cam

Discussion in 'Astrophotography' started by dwkdnvr, Apr 20, 2016.

  1. dwkdnvr

    dwkdnvr Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Aug 8, 2012
    It doesn't look like anyone has posted this, but I thought it might be of interest. ZWO is a company that produces dedicated astro cameras. They started mostly in planetary imaging cameras (i.e. small sensor, high-frame-rate), but they just announced 4 new cameras based on an M43 sensor - I *think* it's the Panasonic sensor from the E-M1 but that's not confirmed.

    product link: New products Archives - ZWO ASI

    The 4 units are Color/Mono and cooled/uncooled. Additionally, they have an adapter allowing the use of M43 lenses with the camera - no electronic control so you'd be limited to manual/adapted lenses, but still a cool idea. I'm planning on getting the adapter to use with my ASI224 and my Canon FD400/4.5.

    The prices aren't bad, but definitely are out of the impulse-buy category. Starting at 699 for the uncooled color version up to ~$1200 for the cooled mono version.
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  2. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    I remember their original funding campaign. I hope it's not the sensor from the E-M1 because that thing sucks at long exposures compared to other 16MP bodies (granted that problem is probably due to the Olympus specific elements). Better that if it's the Sony sensor from the E-M5.
  3. dwkdnvr

    dwkdnvr Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Aug 8, 2012
    Given the history of ZWO with Sony sensors (many of their other cameras use Sony sensors), I just automatically assumed that they would use one of the Sony M43 sensors as well, which is why I was surprised at the speculation that it was a Panasonic unit. I'll have to go find the reference - it's somewhere on CloudyNights. If they did go with Panasonic, I'd assume it was read-out speed that was the compelling feature - they claim 23 frames/sec for full-sensor readout.

    IMHO it's primarily the cooled versions that are interesting. Although standard M43 cameras aren't fantastic for astro work, I'm not sure the uncooled versions do anything I can't do with Olympus Capture and my E-M5 MkII. Units are starting to trickle into folks hands, and one comment from someone who I think saw the demos at NEAF indicated that the noise from a 300s exposure from the cooled camera was lower than 30s uncooled.
  4. RenaudVL

    RenaudVL Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    Got mine today, color version...

    Will post result...
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