Test Reports

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Testing, testing, and more testing...

I am a curious chap.  After my initial pass through my filter research material, I went back and started looking at it again in more detail. My purchase of a deepsky astro-video camera in January 2011 (a Mallincam Xtreme) opened up an opportunity to test many different things, not just filters but also focal reducers, different telescopes, all sorts of things.  I have always tried to write my test results up in the form of a report, and I will do my best to get them posted here for all to read.


Jim T.


"Band Pass Filters For Visual & Video Astronomy - Part 1" , 3.9Mb

A redo of the Deep-Sky filter portion of my original filter research web-paper, this time including the Mallincam CCD as well as the human eye.  Added several new filters, including Halpha filters.  Contains test results for a large number of LP filters.  Part 1 is the body of the report.
"Band Pass Filters For Visual & Video Astronomy - Part 2" , 4.7Mb Part 2 contains the appendices that accompanies the report.  The appendices are mostly the images that were collected from my Mallincam during testing with a large assortment of different LP filters.  The target was M42 Orion Nebula.

"LP Filters Under Dark Skies" 2.2Mb

A presentation of theory and observations surrounding what happens if you use light pollution filters under dark skies.
"LP Filters & Monochrome Cameras", 11.6Mb Screen captures made during some testing using a monochrome astrovideo camera and a range of LP filters.
"Polarizing Filters & Nebulae", 0.9Mb A short test to examine the impact of using a linear polarizing filter on an emission nebula from a light polluted location.
"Multi Narrowband Filters", 7.1Mb A detailed series of tests comparing the various brands of multi narrowband filters that are available today.
"Managing IR in Video Astronomy - Part 1" , 2.2Mb A test report summarizing the visual impact of IR Cut filters on the Mallincam.  Testing was with an 80mm APO, with the target being primarily the nebulous region around Sadr (gamma Cygni).
"Managing IR in Video Astronomy - Part 2" , 400Kb Part 2 of my testing of IR Cut filters on the Mallincam, using my 8" SCT and the targets M27 and M57.
"Managing IR in Video Astronomy - Part 3" , 1.8Mb Part 3 of my testing of IR Cut filters, focusing specifically on the galaxy M31 using a 102mm TV camera lens.  Some time spent evaluating IR Pass filters.
"Managing IR in Video Astronomy - Part 3 Addendum" , 1.0Mb A re-look at the white balancing of my images from the Part 3 test report.

"Managing IR in Video Astronomy - Part 4" , 3.3Mb

Part 4 of my testing of IR Cut filters, focusing on the galaxy M33 using an ED80 APO refractor reduced to f/3.  Spent more time evaluating IR Pass filters, as well as comparing the results to my computational method for evaluating filters.

"Video Astronomy Using LP+IR Blocker" , 2.5Mb

A re-look at using an LP filter with and without an IR Cut filter added. In this test I also evaluate the custom IR Cut filter I had made by Omega Optics.
"Filters & Galaxies for EAA Rev 1", 3.2Mb A fresh look at evaluating how a number of different LP filters work to improve the contrast of galaxies when observed with a camera under light polluted skies, both by analysis and by test.  Revised to include prediction of filter performance under different levels of sky darkness.
"Playing With Focal Ratio 1" , 3.9Mb An extensive test using my ED80 APO refractor, visually comparing the effect of different focal ratios and different integration times.
"Playing With Focal Ratio 2" , 1.1Mb A follow-on test that repeats my focal ratio work using my 8" LX-10 SCT.  The test visually compares the effect of different focal ratios and different integration times.

"Detailed Look At Focal Reducers", 2.2Mb

Summary of a large number of tests using various focal reducers, varying spacings to see what kinds of reduction factors and changes in focus position result.

"Medium Sized Sensor FR Testing", 1.8Mb

Summary of testing a variety of FR configurations using a camera with sensor 13.4mm diagonal size.

"Medium Sized Sensor FR Testing - Follow-up", 0.7Mb

A followup to the test report from earlier in May, examining the Meade f/6.3 SCT focal reducer in more detail.




"Mallincam Xtreme Warm Pixel Test" , 9kb

A quick test of my Mallincam Xtreme with lens cap on, to determine how many warm pixels are visible at different AGC and INT times.

"Video Ritchey-Chretien 8" , 10.6Mb

A summary of my extensive back-to-back tests of the VRC8 versus my 8" LX10.

"Video Ritchey-Chretien 8 - Appendix A" , 606kb

An appendix to the main test report that discusses the different optical coating systems available today, including how they impact the observed performance of the VRC versus an SCT.

"ICX825 Based Astro-Video Camera Comparison", 1.3Mb & "825 Camera Comparison Table"  91Kb

A three-way comparison test between the ICX825 based Atik Infinity-C, Starlight Xpress Ultrastar-C, and Mallincam Starvision-C

"CCD vs CMOS for Video Astronomy", 2.0Mb

Summary of a side-by-side comparison test between a CCD based camera (Lodestar X2C) and a CMOS based camera (ASI290MM).

"ASI294MC Pro vs DS10C-TEC Camera Comparison - Part 1 - Physical", 1.9Mb

A thorough comparison of two high performance cameras that use the Sony IMX294 sensor.  This first part reviews the overall physical properties of the cameras.
"ASI294MC Pro vs DS10C-TEC Camera Comparison - Part 2 - Dark Frames", 2.2Mb A continuation of my comparison testing, this time looking at dark frames generated by the cameras for a range of camera settings.
"ASI294MC Pro vs DS10C-TEC Camera Comparison - Part 3 - Signal to Noise Ratio & TTOI", 2.8Mb Part 3 of my comparison testing, this time looking at the SNR produced by each camera for a range of gains and exposure times.  I also present a new parameter for comparing camera performance:  Time To Observable Image (TTOI).
"ASI294MC Pro vs DS10C-TEC Camera Comparison - Part 4 - Physical", 1.7Mb The 4th and final part of my comparison testing.  This final report compares the cameras in terms of fixed pattern noise, and resistance to fogging.


"Omega Optical Improved NPB DGM Filter", 4.1Mb

Omega has produced the LP filter I have been searching for: two very narrow high transmission band passes around Hbeta/O-III and Halpha.  This report summarizes my testing of the filter both visually and with an astro-video camera.

"Optolong Preliminary Filter Test Report", 0.8Mb

Summary of some initial testing that I did on a batch of sample filters from Optolong (Yulong Optics Co., Ltd).

"Optolong L-eXtreme Filter Comparison", 5.9Mb

Summary of my testing where I compare a range of Optolong brand light pollution filters, including the new L-eXtreme.

"Radian Triad & Triad Ultra Performance vs F-ratio", 3.7Mb

Test report summarizing my more detailed investigation into how the performance of the Radian Triad and Triad Ultra filters are affected by optics f-ratio.



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Last updated: 28-May-21

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