Celestron NexImage Burst fast download monochrome CMOS solar system imager

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The Celestron NexImage Burst Monochrome CMOS camera lets you view and capture live monochrome video of the Sun, Moon, and planets on your computer, as well as save them for later processing. It is particularly effective for solar imaging.
Our Product #: NEXIMBM
Celestron Product #: 95519

Product Description

The Celestron NexImage Burst camera is a dedicated monochrome solar system imager (CCD camera) that can be used with virtually any telescope in any size or price range. Its images can be viewed live on your laptop or PC screen via the supplied USB cable so that several people can view the image at once. They can also be saved to your computer or laptop for later processing to bring out more detail. The innovative and inexpensive NexImage Burst is easy enough for a beginner to use, yet has one of the best CMOS imaging sensors available for exceptional results.

The sensor in the Celestron NexImage Burst is the Aptina AR0132AT CMOS. This state-of-the-art monochrome 1.2 megapixel video chip captures high-resolution planetary, lunar and solar images in a single exposure. For a calculator that will show you the sky coverage of the NexImage Burst with your particular scope, click on the "CCD Calculator" in the "Formula" tab above.

For the sharpest possible images, the NexImage Burst can record more than 120 frames per second when subframed. The images can be stored on your computer as hundreds of individual frames. These can then be digitally stacked by the supplied NexImage iCap software to significantly reduce the electric "noise" inherent in all video chips. Stacking brings out the unseen fine detail (signal) hidden within your real-time images. 

The NexImage Burst camera takes advantage of the fact that the signal to noise ratio of a stacked composite image is proportional to the square root of the number of frames combined. This means that stacking as few as 16 frames will reduce the grainy noise of the composite image by 4 times. Stacking as many 1600 frames will improve the image by 40 times! 

However, stacking the individual frames to reduce the electronic noise is only part of the power of the NexImage Burst software. Before the images are stacked, the software analyzes each individual frame for quality. It then filters out those frames that are most affected (blurred) by poor atmospheric "seeing." This is a form of after-the-fact adaptive optics that leaves only the sharpest, clearest frames to be stacked and aligned into a single high quality image. The result is a bright, clear astroimage with impressive detail. 

Finally, powerful processing features in the NexImage software automatically break the image up into individual unsharp mask layers that can be used to bring out tremendous detail and reveal final images that will rival those taken with astronomical CCD cameras costing a thousand dollars or more. When you are satisfied with the quality of your images, they can be saved as BMP, JPEG, TIFF, or FITS files.

The Celestron NexImage Burst's small pixel size provides sub arc-second solar, lunar, and planetary detail with most telescopes. For example, with a 6" f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain scope the image scale is almost exactly the 0.5 arc second per pixel resolution recommended by most seasoned planetary photographers. 

The NexImage Burst Monochrome is particularly effective for solar imaging, especially if you plan on imaging the Sun through a Hydrogen-alpha solar scope, thanks to its high resolution in H-alpha (higher than that of the same chip used for single-shot color imaging). A single-shot color camera uses a Bayer mask of color filters to turn a normally monochrome CMOS sensor into a color camera. Only a third of that Bayer mask is sensitive to the Sun's H-alpha light, which lowers the overall resolution. In addition, some solar scopes have a "sweet spot" of maximum resolution in their image that isn't very large. If the sweet spot is smaller than your imaging chip, your resolution will be uneven, particularly when combined with the lower resolution of a single-shot color chip. The higher resolution of a monochrome sensor is also why most solar imagers using a white light filter over a telescope's aperture prefer to shoot in monochrome and process the image in false color.

Getting started with the Celestron NexImage Burst Monochrome is as easy as pointing your telescope at the Moon, Sun, or a planet and recording a video. Solar system imaging with the NexImage Burst is a great way to enjoy the hobby of astroimaging if you live in a light-polluted area. If you can see the Sun, Moon, or planet in the sky, you can image it with the NexImage Burst Monochrome camera.

Features of the Camera . . .

Imaging sensor: High sensitivity/high dynamic range/low noise Aptina AR0132AT monochrome CMOS. Fast download electronic rolling shutter lets the imaging sensor continue to gather photons during the acquisition process, thus increasing sensitivity. The sensor chip measures 3.54mm x 2.69mm (4.45mm diagonal).

Resolution: 1.2 megapixels (1280 pixels wide x 960 pixels high, 1,228,800 total pixels). Each pixel measures 3.75 microns square. 12-bit A/D conversion rate for a wide dynamic range. 

Exposure range: From 0.0001 to 1 second (user selectable) at subframe rates of 120 per second (30fps full frame).

USB download: The Celestron NexImage Burst uses a fast USB 2.0 high speed connection to your computer via a supplied 10' USB cable. This allows fast data transfer of the camera's uncompressed frames per second. You see your images almost as soon as you take them, making focusing quick and easy. There is virtually no delay between the moment the image is taken and when it appears on your computer screen.

Connection to the telescope: The NexImage Burst camera has a machined aluminum 1.25" nose piece that allows you to use it with any telescope having a 1.25" focuser. The nose piece is threaded for standard 1.25" eyepiece filters. Back focus is 13.1mm with the 1.25" nose piece. The nose piece is removable, exposing female C-mount threads (25.4 mm x 32 TPI).

Power requirements: No batteries or power supplies required. The camera is powered by your computer via the USB cable. Just plug the NexImage Burst's USB cable into your laptop or PC and you are ready to image. No other power supplies are needed. 

Minimum computer requirements: Pentium IV, 2.0 GHz; 1GB RAM; 24 or 32 bit graphics card; Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7/8 (32 and 64 bit); DirectX 9.0c or higher; USB 2.0/3.0. 
Included components: Celestron NexImage Burst Monochrome camera with 1.25" eyepiece adapter; 10' USB 2.0 cable; a CD-ROM including image capture software to capture streaming video of what your telescope sees and Registax image processing software to align, filter, and stack individual frame into one high quality image or movie.

Tech Details

Pixel Array 1280 x 960
Pixel Size 3.75 x 3.75 microns
Warranty 2 years


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