Atik Cameras Forum

General => Announcements => Topic started by: Jo on August 06, 2015, 09:55:42 AM

Title: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on August 06, 2015, 09:55:42 AM
You may have heard the news last week that we're going to be releasing a new camera - the Atik Infinity, our first camera dedicated to video astronomy.

Yesterday we shared a video showing parts of our first test with the camera.  You can see it here http://www.atik-cameras.com/news/testing-the-atik-infinity/ (http://www.atik-cameras.com/news/testing-the-atik-infinity/) because sometimes it's easier to show than to tell.

But to give you the key points - it uses a Sony ICX825 sensor with EXview HAD II technology - the same as the 414EX - so it has outstanding Quantum Efficiency and low noise. The sensitivity of the sensor means faint objects can be seen in near-real time and in detail.

We're releasing custom software to control the camera, which features live stacking and the ability to switch easily between finding and viewing modes. There are some more details about the camera, software and why we're excited about it here http://www.atik-cameras.com/news/introducing-the-atik-infinity/ (http://www.atik-cameras.com/news/introducing-the-atik-infinity/)

In the meantime, look out for more videos as we put the Infinity through its paces.

Thanks for reading.
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Chris on August 06, 2015, 12:30:22 PM
Interesting to see how good the results you are getting using a pretty modest scope.  The stacking seems to work really well, even with field rotation.  I like that there's no set up required.

One think I'd suggest is could the case be round rather than rectangular? This would make it fit better on a hyperstar mount.

Chris
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on August 07, 2015, 02:59:14 PM
Thanks, Chris.

We went for rectangular so it can easily clear the base on fork mounted telescopes.

Jo
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: aviegas on September 03, 2015, 02:54:17 PM
I am considering purchasing a new icx825 based camera.  Can you explain why your camera is limited to 120s of exposure while the other icx825 camera is unlimited?  This seems like a significant drawback.  Also do you have your software available for download?  It would be useful to see the software prior to making a purchase decision.   Lastly, can you comment on the relative difference in sensitivity between the mono and color sensors?  For instance on M51, how many seconds of exposure difference would it take to obtain the equivalent image in each sensor, color and mono? 

Thank You
Al
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on September 04, 2015, 10:36:30 AM
Because the Infinity is uncooled, we think it's misleading to imply you can use the camera for unlimited exposures in the same way you can use the cooled cameras - you could, but we wouldn't recommend it. The 414EX and the Infinity may use the same sensor, but they're different cameras optimised for different purposes - the 414EX is designed for astrophotography so benefits from cooling and unlimited exposures. The Infinity is designed for video astronomy, near-real time viewing and EAA so is designed for sensitivity at speed. What are you looking to use the camera for?

We're still making a few final tweaks to the software so we can't offer it for download quite yet, but we hope to once it's ready.

And finally, we have an article on mono v colour that you might find of interset http://www.atik-cameras.com/news/mono-colour/

Hope that helps! Jo
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: aviegas on September 04, 2015, 07:19:02 PM
Hi Jo

I disagree. There are many reasons why an astro video user would want to exceed 120s. For instance during a full moon night I would use my narrow band Ha filter. Frankly I suspect that I would need more than 120s at times to capture some targets with your camera under these conditions. Moreover the competition camera does not have this limit. My other astro video cameras also have unlimited integration. As a consumer the worst thing I want from a vendor is to infer all possible uses for their product and lock out possibilities for me to explore.  No thanks.  As a small company I would think the last thing you want to do is develop a great product but then arbitrarily limit it's potential. That to me is not good business and you will lose out to the competitor icx825 live view market

Al
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: mega256 on September 04, 2015, 09:20:03 PM
I also want to buy...now,,,but the 2 min max is bothering me,,,,, NSN  has a 3 min max...It should AT LEAST
be that...It could be even longer.....this is going to hurt sales...
In LP skys of Tampa....with narrow filters...2 min is too short..

Bob
mega
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: jimthompson on September 04, 2015, 09:42:23 PM
I agree, the 120sec limit would be a problem for me.  I often observe using short focal length refractors, making tracking a non-issue.  I am also located in a heavily light polluted area, and use fairly narrow filters to deal with this problem.  I have on numerous occasions gone to 5minutes or longer on a single unguided exposure using my current video astronomy camera.  To me unlimited exposure time is an important feature.

Thanks,

Jim
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: mega256 on September 04, 2015, 11:20:59 PM
Jim
After some more thought on this....2 min Might not be a problem.

With good stacking   we might be able to do things we have not done yet....
I like no guiding,alt/az ezy-peezy stuff...
Things are changing.......we will have to wait....and see....

So I guess I change  (open) my mind that 2 min might just be fine...
lets see what the users do....But I don't like having a limit.
Bob
mega
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on September 07, 2015, 01:13:39 PM

icx825 live view market


I think this is really the key to it - the Infinity and its software are designed to get as close to live view as possible, in an intuitive way. The camera will work unlimited in our other software packages, but due to it being uncooled, weíve maintained the 120s as recommended specification as we want to make sure people realise it's unrealistic to expect it to be able to handle similar exposure times to our cooled cameras (there's a reason we design them like that!). Good stacking gets depth at those short exposure times, but this is all interesting feedback and it's good to have your opinions.

Jo

Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: aviegas on September 07, 2015, 03:37:07 PM
Jo

If your business concern in limiting the Infinity to 120s is that it may compete with your higher-end line of cameras and potentially reduce sales of those higher margin products, well I think this is a misplaced worry.  In fact, what you should be thinking is how to advertise the Infinity as an alternative to visual astronomy, and you should think about positioning the Infinity as a better purchase option than an expensive Ethos eyepiece for instance, rather than worry that a potential customer may decide to buy the Infinity rather than the 414EX for instance, if it had unlimited integration.

I think you continue to miss the point of my argument.  Given the choice between a camera with an arbitrary limitation designed into it because you feel it may not perform as well as the higher-end cooled cameras you make or that you think users should just use multiple stacking routines instead at lower exposure times is an opinion which some users do not share.  If I went with your logic, then I would prefer to purchase an ASI 224 for 1/3rd the cost of your camera.  It has the same resolution, its cheaper to reduce and i can stack hundreds of exposures to obtain similar results.    So if stacking is the 'recommended' use of your camera software for live-view then you need to cut your price in half to be competitive.

Al
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on September 08, 2015, 11:12:13 AM
Hi Al,

Iím really sorry you feel Iíve been missing the point! Weíre not worried about the Infinity competing within our range, itís a different type of camera designed for a different purpose - beyond 120s, youíd be much better off with a cooled camera (this isnít a software limit, just our best advice) and if looking for a very sensitive, fast camera, youíre better off with an Infinity, particularly when combined with our new software Ė limited to 120s because itís designed for near-live views.

I donít know about you, but I canít wait to see these cameras in peopleís hands and see what they can do. And, as with everything we do, weíll keep working long after the camera's released to keep providing the best experience we can!

Thanks, Jo
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Carl on September 09, 2015, 07:55:32 PM
Hi all I have been doing video astronomy for a few years now mostly using CCTV cams and broadcasting. I can say I don't think I have seen anything that requires even more than a minute of exposure for live or near live and frankly if I had a group at my scope having to wait they would soon dwindle. The camera should be as fast as possible for V A if not then image and show results later after processing on line.
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Astrojedi on September 12, 2015, 12:26:55 AM
Jo,

I really like the design of the Infinity SW as well as the design of the camera. I like that it is flatter and fits my Alt Az mount for more casual observing sessions.

But like some of the other folks here I am concerned about the 120s exposure limit. Is this a hardware limitation?

I have done up to 5 min exposures with my 829 sensor based camera when doing narrow band viewing and dark frames were sufficient to clean up the hot pixels in the image (at least for live viewing purposes)

Hiten
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Howie on September 12, 2015, 01:34:19 PM
Hi Jo, perhaps you can pass onto the powers-that-be to show in the next demo a target when OIII is fitted (which is a nice and narrow band filter). Perhaps we'll all find 120 secs is more than enough!? :).
Also, can the techs actually explain just why they did limit exposure?. Would more exposure require a cooler and increase cost? By how much? ... perhaps some folk would pay that bit extra for "InfinityII - now with cooler and unlimited exposure time"! Or am I being a bit cynical :)
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Chris on September 12, 2015, 06:39:32 PM
My reading of what Jo is saying is that the camera itself is NOT limited in the exposure it can use.  If you want to take 30 minute exposures with it you can.

What is limited is the live view software. It doesn't seem unreasonable to limit live view to 2 minutes,  that's quite a long way from live, even almost live.

If you want to acquire traditional long exposure images with this camera you can.  I guess it will use the usual controllers for that.

Chris
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Astrojedi on September 14, 2015, 06:11:39 PM
Thanks Chris. I am very interested in purchasing this camera as I really do like the overall experience but I would like someone from the company to confirm that there is no 2 minute limitation.

I live in a highly light polluted area and going deeper beyond the brighter DSOs or teasing out subtle detail means using narrow band or light pollution filters. When using filters sometimes I can go to 3-5 minutes for the first sub (subsequent subs may be shorter).

For many of us unfortunately dealing with light pollution is a reality and experimentation is the name of the game. I think it is a little short sighted for Atik to assume that everyone conducts astronomy from dark skies such as the ones in the live broadcast video.

Maybe another demo with narrow band filters may help folks understand what to expect with a 2 minute limitation.

 
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Carl on September 15, 2015, 12:49:47 AM
Guys I'm not sure your understanding what the camera is for. Video astronomy is live view or near live view and not imaging. It's purpose is to be able to see in seconds for openreach etc. The software is live stacking short exposures instead of long exposures then stacking and processing later. So you don't need anything near 2 minutes or cooling. As far as I can read the camera will work with Atiks normal software and let you expose for as long as you wish.
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: JimH123 on December 27, 2015, 05:17:09 PM
I really like the concept of this SW.  Is there any chance that a version of this might be released using a more advanced CCD, i.e., one with a larger sized CCD with more pixels, with cooling and without the 2 min restriction?  If it were to have the same auto stacking ability, it would be quite a product.
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on January 06, 2016, 01:59:05 PM
There's a definitely a chance - it's something we'd really like to do but there are a few techincal/performance barriers we need to break through first. I don't have a realistic time frame I can give at the moment, but hopefully we'll crack it later in the year!
Title: Re: Atik Infinity - Live View Software
Post by: bwa on March 22, 2016, 08:54:28 PM
Any chance the software could be used with other ATIK cameras?  I think it would be great with my ATIK 428Ex!

bwa
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on March 24, 2016, 12:57:15 PM
It's something we'd like to explore but software-wise we've been focussed on the restructure of our drivers and DLL, so we haven't had much time to dedicate to it. Hopefully it's something we might be able to look into later in the year!
Jo
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: JimH123 on April 10, 2016, 01:21:50 AM
There's a definitely a chance - it's something we'd really like to do but there are a few techincal/performance barriers we need to break through first. I don't have a realistic time frame I can give at the moment, but hopefully we'll crack it later in the year!

There are a few easy improvements I would like to see made to the Atik Infinity SW:

1)  Would like to enable/disable a cross hair cursor on the screen.  I find that I makes sense to do my mount alignment directly on the screen and to not mess around installing an eyepiece in the scope for this purpose.  As a temp solution I have tied a vertical and horizontal string on my laptop screen to represent a cross hair cursor and with this I do the alignment.  When done, I just shove it out of the way.

2)  Would like a night vision option for the screen.  It is too bright and knocks out my night vision.

3)  I have trouble sorting out the FIT files.  Perhaps it should ask for a name when turning on and to use that as part of the base name. 

4)  In playback mode, I should be able to delete FIT images I don't want to use or keep.

5)  Put a clock on the screen. 

Thanks
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: bwa on May 02, 2016, 01:26:51 AM
It's something we'd like to explore but software-wise we've been focussed on the restructure of our drivers and DLL, so we haven't had much time to dedicate to it. Hopefully it's something we might be able to look into later in the year!
Jo
I would have hoped for sooner.  Considering StarLight Live works with their full line of cameras and is in its third release, I've purchased an StarLight Express UltraStar camera.  I do like the footprint of the Infinity better but software/control rules!

bwa
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
Post by: Jo on May 03, 2016, 11:41:25 AM
Unfortunately we only have so many resources and they're currently focused on creating high performance cross-platform drivers! But of course I can understand your point, and StarLight Live and the Infinity software do have slightly different focuses.

I'd be interested to know which features StarLight Live offers for the Ultrastar that Infinity doesn't offer for the Infinity? Are you going mono and multi-spectral?
Title: Atik Infinity Software w/ Other ATIK Cameras??
Post by: bwa on April 24, 2017, 01:45:40 AM
Unfortunately we only have so many resources and they're currently focused on creating high performance cross-platform drivers! But of course I can understand your point, and StarLight Live and the Infinity software do have slightly different focuses.

I'd be interested to know which features StarLight Live offers for the Ultrastar that Infinity doesn't offer for the Infinity? Are you going mono and multi-spectral?
Jo,

About a year ago I asked, "Any chance the software could be used with other ATIK cameras?  I think it would be great with my ATIK 428Ex!"

Any progress in this direction?  You had indicated something might happen by the end of 2016?  It has some impact upon whether I sell an ATIK 428Ex and go with a competitor's product!?

Thanks

bwa

P.S.:  I now have both the mono and color Infinity cameras but adding / subtracting future cameras will depend upon the ease of use and the Infinity software is the best there is!!
Title: Re: Atik Infinity
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