Player One Astronomy is a Suzhou, China based company that has recently announced the release of its new Mars planetary camera series. The two available cameras are the Mars-C USB3.0 Color Camera and the Mars-M USB3.0 Mono Camera.
According to the Player One Astronomy team, “The naming of Player One Astronomy cameras is unique as we name our planetary cameras after planets. The size of each planet, to a certain extent, represents the size of the camera sensors.” In addition to the Mars camera line the company offers the Neptune-C II USB3.0 Color Camera and the Neptune-C USB3.0 Color Camera.
The Mars-C USB3.0 Color Camera utilizes the Sony IMX462 1/2.8” format sensor. The 2.9um pixel size accommodates a well depth of 12ke with a total of 2.1MP (the resolution is 1936×1096), and the diagonal is 6.46 mm.
The Mars-M is a monochrome planetary camera which uses the Sony IMX290 1/2.8″ CMOS sensor , with a 1944 x 1096 array of 2.9um pixels and the diagonal is 6.46 mm.
The Mars cameras can be connected to a telescope with a 1.25″ T-Mount, or by a Barlow lens between the camera and a telescope to extend the focal length. With a CS adapter and fisheye lens attached to the camera, the cameras can be utilized as all sky cameras.
The Player One Astronomy Mars cameras utilize DDR3 cache which helps stabilize and secure data transmission, effectively helps avoids frame dropping and greatly reduces read noise. With the DDR3 cache, the cameras do not require high computing demands and still offer excellent performance even when connected to a USB 2.0 port.
The cameras also offer DPS (Dead Pixel Suppression) technology, where dead pixels, including hot pixels and cold pixels of the image, are swept away.
When the Mars cameras are connected to the USB3.0 interface and full-resolution preview is used, they can reach 136 FPS in RAW8 mode (10bit ADC). The frame rate in RAW16 mode (12bit ADC) is 64 frames per second.
You can learn more about the Player One Astronomy Mars series of planetary cameras here.
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