ZWO ASI294MC-PRO 11.3 MP CMOS Color Astronomy Camera with USB 3.0 # ASI294MC-P
- ZWO ASI294MC-Pro cooled color astronomy camera uses micro-4/3 Sony IMX294CJK CMOS sensor
- High 4144x2822 resolution (11.7 megapixels) and 4.63-micron pixel size
- Ideal for capturing high-resolution color astronomical images of extended brighter deep-sky objects and lunar/solar/planetary images
- Integrated two-stage TEC cooling reduces sensor temperature to 35C below ambient to enable low-noise imaging of faint deep-sky objects
- Fast USB3.0 transfer at up to 19fps (in 10-bit ADC high-speed mode) and 16fps (in 14-bit ADC normal mode)
- 256MB DDR3 buffer for quick and stable data transfer and reduced amp glow
- Attractive red anodized CNC aluminum body stands up to heavy field use
- Ready to go out of the box with cables, adapters, and manual; Software and drivers available from manufacturer's website
- Compact body with 78mm diameter and weight of only 410 g (14.5 oz)
Compact Micro-4/3 Astronomy Camera for Deep-Sky and Solar-System Imaging
The ZWO ASI294MC cooled color astronomy camera is equipped with Sony’s CMOS IMX294CJK Micro-4/3 format sensor, the first in-house sensor in this format for astronomy cameras. With a resolution of 11.7 megapixels, this one-shot color camera has large pixels for high signal-to-noise ratio for imaging deep-sky objects. It’s also ideal for fast, high-resolution lunar, solar, and planetary imaging.
State-of-the-Art Sony Micro-4/3 Sensor
ZWO engineered the ASI294MC camera around Sony’s IMX294CJK Micro-4/3rds 10.7 megapixel CMOS sensor with 21.6mm diagonal, and they modified the sensor to get a larger diagonal of 23.2mm (19.1mmx13.0mm) and resolution of 11.7 megapixels. Ideal for low-illumination performance, the ASI294MC captures images with an array of large 4144x2822 pixels. Each pixel measures 4.63-micron on edge. The pixels have a 63700e well capacity, more than 3x the capacity of the ASI1600-series cameras to help you capture sharp images of bright stars without saturation. This back-illuminated sensor has a high estimated QE of 75%
The dimensions and pitch of the IMX294CJK sensor matches well for many imaging applications with a wide range of telescopes. A small telescope with 400mm focal length, for example, gives a field of view of with this camera of 2.7 degrees x 1.9 degrees. A telescope with 1500mm focal length gives a field of 0.7 degrees x 0.5 degrees.
DDR3 Memory Buffer and Fast Data Transfer
The ‘Pro’ designation of the camera comes from its internal 256MB DDR3 buffer for quick and stable data transfer and reduced amp glow. The USB3.0 port offers a fast 16 fps capture rate at full resolution with 14-bit ADC and 2.5e read noise.
TEC Sensor Cooling and Anti-Dew Heater
The two-stage TEC cooling system brings the sensor temperature down to 35oC below ambient to keep sensor noise as low as possible, even on warm nights. The heat generated by the TEC is used to counteract the formation of dew on the front window of the camera. The camera’s TEC cooler requires 12V@3A provided with an external power supply (not included). If the camera is powered with a USB2.0 host, the external 12V power supply is also required.
Superb Low-Noise Performance
The ASI294MC camera has a dynamic range of 9 to 13 stops depending on the camera gain settings. The read noise can be adjusted from 1.2e to 7.3e; at a gain of 120dB, you get 13 stops of dynamic range with a read noise of just 1.3e.
This TEC-cooled camera works well for capturing color images of deep-sky objects. It also excels as a solar/lunar/planetary camera, especially with telescopes of focal length longer than about 1200mm. The USB3.0 interface and fast capture rate of the camera lets you grab 11MB video at 19fps (in 10-bit ADC high-speed mode) and 16fps (in 14-bit ADC normal mode).
USB3.0 Data Ports and USB2.0 Hub
The camera’s electronics, other than the cooler, are fully powered through the USB3.0 port. The TEC cooler requires 12V@3A provided with an external power supply (not included).
The ASI294 incorporates a USB2.0 hub for powering accessories such as a guide camera and electronic focuser.
The camera has a diameter of 78mm and weighs 410 grams (14.5 oz). It comes with a padded carrying bag, M42-M48 adapter, M54-M48 21mm extender and M48-M48 16.5mm extender, 2” cover, USB3.0 and USB2.0 cables, and a quick-start guide.
This camera can be configured with the following connections for attachment to telescopes and imaging accessories:
- 1.25” nosepiece
- 2” nosepiece (optional 2” extension strongly recommended)
- Female T/T2 thread (M42x0.75)
- Male T/T2 thread (M42x0.75)
- Female M28.5x0.6 thread via 1.25" nosepiece
ZWO is phasing out software CDs, but the camera comes with instructions to help you download the required control software and drivers directly from the ZWO website.
- Sensor: 4/3″ SONY IMX294 CMOS
- Diagonal: 23.2mm
- Resolution: 11.3Mega Pixels 4144X2822
- Pixel Size: 4.63µm
- Bayer Pattern: RGGB
- Shutter:Rolling shutter
- Exposure Range: 32µs-2000s
- ROI: Supported
- Read Noise: 1.2e @39db gain
- QE peak: TBD
- Full well: 63.7ke
- DDRIII Buffer: 256MB
- Interface: USB3.0/USB2.0
- Adaptor: M42X0.75
- Protect window:AR window
- Dimensions: 78mm Diameter
- Weight: 410g
- Back Focus Distance: 6.5mm
- Cooling: Regulated Two Stage TEC
- Delta T: 35°C below ambient
- Camera Power consumption: 650mA at 5V
- Cooler Power consumption: 12V at 3A Max
- Working Temperature: -5°C—45°C
- Storage Temperature: -20°C—60°C
- Working Relative Humidity: 20%—80%
- Storage Relative Humidity: 20%—95%
Max FPS at full resolution:
- 4144×2822 19fps
- 4144×2822 16fps
More resolutions can be user defined
What's In the Box
- Camera Body
- Quick Guide
- Camera Bag
- 21mm Extender
- T2-M48 16.5mm Extender
- 1.25" Nosepiece
- 1.25" Cover
- M42-M48 Adapter
- 2x 0.5m USB 2.0 Cable
- T2-1.25" Adapter
- 2x Spacer
- USB 3.0 Cable
- Instructions for downloading drivers and software from ZWO website
- Country of Manufacture: China