calastro New Member
- Skill Level
- Time with Product
Mar 28, 2008
- User Notes:
An excellent camera with good IR sensitivity!Pros:
Rugged; Reliable; Good sensitivity into the IRCons:
For many years, low light level CCD monochrome surveillance video cameras have been the standard workhorse for astronomers doing video occultation timing and video meteor recording. The 902 series of cameras from Watec (Japan) and Watec America have long been the leaders and innovators in getting the emerging Sony CCD technologies out to the market. The 902 series was far ahead of most other manufactures in that it used Sony CCDs in 1/2" format.
A major advance was the introduction of the WAT-902H from Watec (Japan) using the new Sony EXview HAD CCD detector. Sensitivity was far superior to the older Super HAD technology and the CCD chip was far more sensitive in the near infrared. However, many people complained of the lack of controls for such things as sensitivity and gain. Watec America responded with the LCL-902K with a number of control switches and adjustments added (controls are inside the camera housing).
This camera is rated at .00015 lux at f/1.4. However, at this level of sensitivity, noise is a major issue, so most users adjust the sensitivity back just a bit. This make a considerable noise improvement. It (and its cousin the WAT-902H2 Supreme) are the current tools of choice in meteor work and for occultations. With a moderately fast 8" scope, it will routinely go down to 10th mag. and can go down to 12th mag. on K and M spectral type stars.
For a side by side comparison of performance testing results of these newer cameras go to: http://www.kolumbus.fi/oh5iy/astro/Ccd.html
I have owned one of these cameras for going on 5 years now and find it to be fantastic!
RECENT NEWS...Watec America has lost their long legal battle with Watec Japan, and has apparently gone out of business. While this camera may still be found in some existing stock inventories, apparently no new 902Ks will be produced.
The replacement is the Watec WAT-902H2 Supreme. I highly recommend this camera if you require a camera with true 'live' video at this sensitivity level.Sort by