WEB CAMERAS


FOR ASTRONOMY IMAGING

Web-cameras come in all shapes and sizes but not all are suitable for astronomy imaging purposes. The table below lists some specification details for the more common cameras which have been available and attempts to rate them for this work - where opinions have been expressed by QCUIAG members. Note - this is a very rough classification, based on personal opinions. Where a camera has been modified for long exposure capability to Steve Chamber's design, this is recorded in the table and is linked to the modifier's web-pages (where available).

   The information for the cameras has been gathered from their manufacturers' web-sites and from comments made on the QCUIAG forum, so the accuracy cannot be guaranteed by me. Unfortunately, much of the information which would be useful to us, like CCD type, light sensitivity  etc. is not available for all cameras. Furthermore; specifications and models change frequently so most of these cameras are already no longer made but some can still be obtained either from retailers or 'pre-used' off the web .However, prices and availability cannot be quoted here due to the wide variations between different countries. It's generally agreed by those who have tried them, that CMOS based web cameras are not yet sensitive enough for astronomy use other than for imaging the moon and brightest planets, but, this may be changing. Good results are being obtained with CMOS conventional cameras.

See this page for photos of these cameras and  of the Sony ICX098 and Sharp LZ24BP  CCDs.

See  this page for a list of miscellaneous web cameras, none of which, as far as I know, have  been modified for long-exposure work - if you have modified one and have details on a web-page, let me know. Much of this information is of historical interest only - but I'll keep it here for reference.

David Molyneaux      14 February 2012    

UPDATED -Broken Links may be a few - apologies

 

Manufacturer

Model No.

Name

Sensor Type

Sensitivity

Sensor Model

Sensor Spec.

Modified to SC Spec ?

Rating for Astro work

O/S

3COM

371800 (disc.)

Home Connect

CCD

<1 lux

Sharp LZ2313H5

512 X 492 pixel 9.6x7.5um

IF BLUE, HAS LINK TO SITE

.

W98,ME,MAC

Drivers - http://www.3com.com/products/en_US/result.jsp?selected=6&sort=effdt&order=desc&sku=003718-00

.

Ame CU98A Vcam CCD <1 lux Sony ICX098AK VGA YES & YES  

W98 UP

-"-

CF2000

Vcam (firewire)

CCD

<5 lux

Sony

VGA

.

.

W98 UP   also MAC

Drivers - http://www.ame-group.com/download.htm (no downloads for Mac)

Compro

  PS39 - parallel port, PS39U- USB

CCD

 

SEE 3COM

       

Creative -

.

Webcam

CMOS

?

.

352 x 288

.

.

.

-"- VideoBlaster Webcam 3 CMOS       YES AS TRUST    

-"-

 

Pro Ex Webcam

CCD

6 lux

Sharp

VGA

YES

 

W98 UP

-"-

300

PC Cam

CCD

10 lux

Sharp LZ24BP

VGA

YES

. .

-"-

600

PC Cam

CCD

10 lux

.

XGA

.

.

.

-"-

NX ULTRA

Webcam

CCD

 

Sony ICX098?

VGA

YES

 

W98 UP

-"-

LIVE ULTRA

Webcam

CCD

?

?

VGA

   

W98 UP

Drivers - http://www.americas.creative.com/support/welcome.asp?rd=download .

D - Link

350

NETQAM PRO 350+

CCD

?

Sharp

VGA

YES

   

IBM

XVP610

PC Camera Pro

1/4"CCD

?

Sanyo LC99160

VGA

    WIN98,Me,2K,XP

-"-

XVP600

PC Camera Pro Max

1/4"CCD

?

?

VGA

.

.

WIN98,Me,2K,XP

Drivers -

Unibrain

DIGCAM-RTL 

MACCAM-RTL 

Fire-i Web Cameras (firewire)

CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098AK

VGA

    WINME,2K,XP also MAC version
   

Intel

CS430

Pro Video PC

CCD

25 lux

Sharp LZ24BP

VGA 659 X 494 pixel 5.6x5.6um

YES

B

W98,Me,2000

-"- CS330 Home PC Camera CCD 20 lux ? ? YES   W98 ME 2K XP

-"-

.

Easy PC

CMOS

?

.

.

.

.

.

Drivers - http://support.intel.com/sites/support/index.htm

.

iREZ

.

Kritter USB

1/4"CCD

1 lux

Sony

VGA 

.

.

}MAC }WIN98

GM 051395

StealthFire webcam

1/4" CCD

?

?

VGA

No, but see here

Firewire 6 pins Win98 up  MAC OS9 up

Drivers not needed for Win XP or Mac OS/X 10.2 - Plug & play .Others from http://www.globalmedia.com/

.

Kodak DVC325 Digital Video Camera CCD ? .

VGA 

YES

.

WIN95,98

Drivers and update for Win Me, 2000, XP -  not known

Logitech

.

QuickCam 3000

1/4"CCD

.

Sony ICX098AK

see below

YES

AAA

WIN98 UP, MAC

NOTE- various internal boards & components used-not all suitable for the mod as the 3000. Not possible to identify from outside the case.

QuickcamPro4000

1/4"CCD

 

VARIOUS - Sony ICX098BQ, Sharp LZ24BP, ETC

VGA 

YES Mod as 3000 see note.

DEPENDS ON WHICH CCD

WIN98 UP MAC OS9

-"-

.

QuickcamPro5000 USB 2.0

CMOS

Rightlight(R)  4T technology ??

VGA

WIN 2K XP ONLY

-"-

Note-Orbit MP is1.3MpixCMOS

QuickCam Sphere / Orbit

CCD

?

?

VGA

   

WIN 2K UP   MAC

-"-

.

QuickCam Web

CMOS

2.1lux

ST VV6410

352 x 288 pixel 7.5 x 6.9um

.

.

}WIN98 UP

-"-

.

QuickCam Express

CMOS

.

NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH FOR ASTRO USE

.

.

.

}WIN98 UP

-"-

 .

 Quickcam VC   Black

CCD

170mV/lux

Sharp LZ2547

352 x 288 pixel   8.2 x3.8um

YES

 .

WIN VERSIONS ?

-"-

.

Quickcam Fusion USB 2.0

CMOS

?

4T technology ?  quite sensitive to light.

1280 x 960 pixel

. .

WIN 2K XP ONLY

Connectix

Obsolete

Quickcam B/W

CCD

.

T.I. TC255P

336 x 243 pixel  10x10um

This started it all !

.

Drivers (a few) - http://www.quickcam.com/html/index2.html

Orange Micro

70HTL101

iBOT Firewire

1/4"CCD

.

Sony ICX098AK

VGA 659 X494

YES

.

WIN98 UP MAC

 

70HTL100

iBOT Firewire Pro

1/4"CCD

 

Sony ICX098AK

VGA 659 X 494

YES

  WIN98 UP MAC
  70USB90050/1

iBOT2 USB2

1/3"CMOS

<2.5 lux

OV7620

VGA     WIN98SE UP NO MAC
   

Philips

PCA 635 VC

?

CCD

10 lux

.

512 x 582 pixel

?

.

W95,98,NT4

-"-

PCA 645 VC

?

CCD

30 lux

Sharp LZ2423BY

.

YES

.

WIN98, LINUX

-"-

PCA 646 VC

?

CCD

30 lux

Sharp LZ2423BY

.

YES

.

WIN98, LINUX

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

-"-

PCVC 655K

Vesta Fun

CMOS

15 lux

NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH FOR ASTRO USE

.

.

.

WIN98,Me

-"-

PCVC 675K

Vesta

1/4"CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098AK

VGA 659 x 494 pixel 5.6x5.6um

YES

AAA

 ALL WIN MAC

-"-

PCVC 680K

Vesta Pro

CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098AK

YES

AAAA

ALL WIN MAC,LINUX

-"-

PCVC 690K

Vesta Scan

CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098AK

YES

AAAA

- NOT MAC

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

-"-

PCVC 720K

Toucam XS

CMOS

10 lux

NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH FOR ASTRO USE

.

.

.

ALL WIN

-"-

PCVC 730K

Toucam Fun

CMOS

10 lux

NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH FOR ASTRO USE

.

.

.

} ALL WIN +

-"-

PCVC 740K

Toucam Pro

1/4"CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098BQ

VGA 659 x 494 pixel 5.6x5.6um

YES

AAAAA 

ALL WIN + MAC,LINUX

-"-

PCVC 750K

Toucam Pro 3D

CCD

<2 lux

Sony ICX098BQ

same as 740 ?

.

ALL WIN- NOT MAC

-"-

PCVC 840K

Toucam Pro II - 740 IN NEW CASE

CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098BQ

VGA

YES

as 740

AAAAA

ALL WIN, Linux ,USB 

-"-

SPC 900NC  

CCD

<1 lux

Sony ICX098BQ

VGA

YES

AAAAA

ALL WIN Linux

Drivers for the above -  http://www.p4c.philips.com/cgi-bin/dcbint/cpproduct_selector.pl?slg=ENG&grp=PC_PRODUCTS_GR

and for Linux - http://www.saillard.org/linux/pwc/

Trust

.

Spacec@m 200

CMOS

<2.5 lux

OV7620

VGA 664 x 492 pixel 7.6x7.6um

YES

B

.

 

WB 5400

 

CMOS

?

Silicon Optronics

1280 X 1024    

Win 2K XP 7

Drivers - http://www.trust.com/products/                sensor specs -                     http://www.milliard.com.hk/image/SILICON/SOI966_DataSheet_1.0_040922.pdf

 

VGear

 

  TalkcamTracer

CCD

<1 lux

1/4" Believed Sony ICX098BQ

VGA

claimed resolution  interpolated  

Win 2K XP

 

Videologic

 

HomeC@m

CCD

2 lux

Sharp LZ24BP

VGA YES   ALL WIN USB
Drivers - ? .

PHOTOS OF THESE WEB-CAMERAS >

MORE WEB-CAMERAS >

Last edited on 14 February 2012         

Want to learn how to use Web-cams for astronomical imaging ? - go here to the Quickcam and Unconventional Imaging Astronomy Group pages.

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