The QHY268 Pro Cooled Color CMOS Camera is ultra high resolution at 26 MP. Its APS-C format sensor is back-illuminated with 16-bit ADC and 3.76 um pixel size.
This camera is still not released, but you may pre-order it. Note that the price is tentative and is subject to change. The specs are also tentative and may vary.
Native 16-bit ADC, 65536 Levels
The QHY268C is the CMOS camera with native 16-bit A/D on-chip. The output is real 16-bits with 65536 levels. To compare with the 12-bit and 14-bit ADC. The 16-bit ADC can get high sample resolution, system gain will be less than 1e/ADU. No sample error noise and low noise.
Full Well: 51ke- at 3.76 um
One benefit of the back-illuminated CMOS structure is improved full well capacity. This is particularly helpful for sensors with small pixels. Even with unbinned 3.76 um pixels the QHY268C has a full well capacity of 50ke-
Ultra Low Read Noise
With a 1 to 4 e read noise, the QHY268C has only one electron of read noise at high gain and 15/fps high readout speed. One electron of read noise means the camera can achieve a SNR>3 at only 4 to 6 photons. This is perfect performance when conditions are photon limited, i.e., short exposures, narrow band imaging, etc., making this large area sensor ideal for sky surveys and time domain astronomy.
Back-Illuminated, Electric Rolling Shutter, and Low Dark Current
This back-illuminated Scientific CMOS camera has extremely low dark current using SONY's Exmor BSI CMOS technology. In general, the fan-blade mechanical shutter will be broken if it is used 200,000 times or so, and in some specific cases it is easy to fail to switch on or off. The advantage of electronic shutter over mechanical shutter is high-reliability and stability when the observatory shoots a large number of pictures. The electronic shutter is a relatively perfect choice for the observatory.
Best Match for a HyperStar System
The round camera case design of QHY268C and the image size is your best match for HyperStar systems.
USB3.0 and 2 x 10 GB Fiber Optic I/O Ports
Using the USB3.0 interface you transfer at 6/fps.
This Pro version also has 2 (A and B) 10 Gigabyte Fiber Optic ports, for rich, external, expandable I/O signals as well as a rich resource that allow the user to customize the FPGA inside the camera.
The QHY268C has regulated TEC Cooling with 2-stage TE Cooler.
The differences between the Photographic and Professional versions:
- Professional version has a high-speed fiber interface and USB3.0 interface. Photographic version has only a USB3.0 interface.
- Professional version may has more on-camera DDR3 memory than the Photographic version.
- Professional version has rich, external, expandable I/O signals as well as a rich resource that allow the user to customize the FPGA inside the camera.
- Professional version is more expensive than Photographic version.
- Professional version has a longer body to accommodate the length of the optical fiber interface.
- Also: The Early Bird version of the camera has the hardware design of the Professional model, but the functions of the Photographic version. For example, the Early Bird version will have sockets for both Ethernet and USB3.0 but only the USB socket is active. Users who buy the Early Bird version can upgrade it to the full Professional version QHY268C-Pro by paying the difference in price. （Those that purchase the Photographic version have no chance to upgrade into the Professional version.） The Early Bird version also includes a free set of the QHYCCD 0.5 mm-27.5 mm spacers for precise and solid back-focus adjustment in a variety of optical train configurations. Early Bird purchasers can also order a QHYCFW3L (7-position, 2-inch, 50 mm) or QHYCFW3XL (9- position, 2-inch, 50 mm) motor-driven filter wheel with the QHY268 camera at 10% off the list price of the filter wheel.