Review: First Light of ZWO ASI2400MC Pro – Shunsuke Sekine
The First CMOS Astro Camera With the Sony IMX410 Sensor
ASI2400MC Pro uses Sony's latest back-illuminated IMX410 full-frame format 14-bit ADC sensor. It's a 24MP camera with a big pixel size of 5.94um that can accommodate a super large well depth of 100ke.
With the ultra-low readout noise of 1.1e and amazing zero amp-glow, the ASI2400MC Pro is born to be another great innovation of ZWO in the field of full-frame cooled OSC astro cameras.
Note: ZWO Cooled cameras require a 12V power source for the TEC cooler and USB hub power. If you don't have one, please add it through the options on the right side of the product display.
Important: ASI6200/2600/2400 cameras require 1A current from the USB port. If your PC can not provide enough current, please use an external 12V power supply to power the camera. A power shortfall will manifest with the camera disconnecting from the imaging software during capture of frames.
Important: For the following imaging camera models, please use a separate power supply rather than the power hub the ASIAIR Pro as the hub cannot provide enough amperage to power the camera's TEC coolers: ASI6200, ASI2600, ASI2400, ASI533, ASI071MC
Full Frame OSC Camera
The ASI2400MC Pro uses full-frame format, the sensor length and width are 36mm * 24mm and the diagonal is 43.3mm.
IMX410 Backlit Sensor
The back-illuminated CMOS sensor improves sensitivity and noise reduction – the key factors to enhancing image quality, while radically realigning their fundamental pixel structure from front-illumination to back-illumination. It has retained the advantages of CMOS image sensors such as low power consumption and high-speed operation.
With a conventional front-illumination structure, the metal wiring and transistors on the surface of the silicon substrate that form the sensor's light-sensitive area (photo-diode) impede photon gathering carried out by the on-chip lens. A back-illuminated structure minimizes the degradation of sensitivity to optical angle response, while also increasing the amount of light that enters each pixel due to the lack of obstacles such as metal wiring and transistors that have been moved to the reverse of the silicon substrate.
Large well depth capacity, low read-out noise and high dynamic range.
Though these two cameras share very similar pixel sizes (5.94um vs 5.96um), the well depth capacity of ASI2400MC Pro is 100ke, which is 132% of another full frame ASI camera ASI128MC Pro, so ASI2400MC Pro comes with ultra-high a dynamic range up to 14 stops. Upon that, overexposure probability will be reduced, with richer color gradation gained.
When the gain value is 140, the magical HCG high gain mode is turned on, the readout noise is greatly reduced (as low as 1.1e), and the dynamic range is basically unchanged.
Zero Amp Glow
Traditional CMOS sensors produce a weak infrared light source during operation quite often seen in the corner of uncalibrated images as the tell tale signs of ‘amp glow'. As the ASI2400MC Pro uses zero amp glow circuitry, you won't have to worry about amp glow even when using high gain, long exposure imaging.
With amp glow – exposure 300 second exposure
ASI2400 frame with no amp glow – Exposure 300 seconds
ASI2400MC Pro comes with the polyimide heater that can avoid any dew problems.
The anti-dew heater which completely fit the protective window will heat it to avoid any dew problems.
The heat anti-dew heater power is around 5W and can be turned off in software to save power.
The QE peak value of the ASI2400MC Pro is above 80%.
Two-Stage TEC Cooling: Ultra-Low Dark Current
ASI2400MC Pro uses two stage TEC cooling that can lower the CMOS sensor temperature to more that 35c below ambient, which can greatly reduce dark current generation and sensor noise even with extended exposure times.
The unique dark current suppression technology can even further reduce dark current noise. When it's cooled to -20℃, the current noise can be as low as 0.00035e/s/pix, which is completely negligible!
Note：ASI2400 Pro camera requires 1A current from the USB, if your PC can not provide enough current, please use an external 12V power supply to power the camera.
USB 3.0 & 256MB DDR3 Memory
The ASI2400MC Pro is equipped with a USB 3.0 transmission interface and a built-in 256MB(2Gb) DDR3 cache to ensure stable and secure data transmission. Under long exposure, it effectively avoids frame dropping and greatly reduces the glow effect caused by slow reading speed.
What's in the box?
The Best Solution for 55mm Back Focus
5 connection methods of ASI2400 to get 55mm back focus length (This tutorial is for ASI6200, but it also works for ASI2400):
- Nikon-T2 adapter
- New filter Drawer for EOS lens(can be used with 2"filter)
- Nikon lens
- Canon lens