ZWO cameras are very popular for astrophotography. They deliver excellent photos when used with telescopes. But there are many models of ZWO cameras. You must compare them to get a suitable model for you.
So, how to do a ZWO camera comparison?
There are many criteria for selecting a ZWO camera. You have to check the sensor model and size. Then there is the resolution of the camera. You also have to decide about the pixel size and density. The capture speed and cooling system are also comparable. The cameras come at different prices too.
This is only the beginning. Below I have discussed these aspects of popular ZWO cameras. Check them out!
Short Zwo Camera Comparison
Selecting the right ZWO is not an easy task. There are a lot of models available in the market with varied specifications. Just like comparing 7×50 and 10×50 binoculars, you have to be very careful in this case.
To reduce your work, I have made a comparison table below. From this table, you will get all the required information on different ZWO cameras. This will surely save time.
|ASI071MC Pro||ASI 183MC Pro||ASI1600MM||ASI1600MM Pro||ASI294MC Pro|
|Sensor||Sony IMX071||Sony IMX183||Panasonic MN34230||Panasonic MN34230||Sony IMX294|
|Resolution||16MP 4944×3284||20.18MP 5496×3672||16MP 4656×3220||16MP 4656×3220||11.3MP 4144×2822|
|QE||50%||84%||60%||60%||To Be Declared|
|TEC Cooling||35-40 Below Ambient||45 Below Ambient||N/A||40-45 Below Ambient||35 Below Ambient|
You can make a quick decision by analyzing the above table. And keep scrolling for more detailed views on the topic. In the next section, I will describe the differences in short notes to get rid of any doubt.
Extended Zwo Camera Comparison
Now let’s go through an in-depth review of different ZWO cameras. This extended discussion will help you to choose the best ZWO camera. You will know about every tiny detail about these cameras from this discussion.
The device which is the heart of the modern camera is the sensor. The sensor captures the light needed to form the image.
The quality of the image is largely dependent on the size of the sensor. The sensor size of ZWO cameras varies depending on their model.
Most ZWO cameras use Sony sensors in their digital cameras. The ASI071MC Pro, ASI18MC Pro, ASI294MC Pro, and many other ZWO cameras come with Sony lenses. The models of these lenses are IMX071, IMX183, and IMX294 respectively.
Whereas the ASI1600 MM and 1600MM pro have Panasonic MN34230 sensors.
The resolution of a digital camera indicates the size of the image it will produce. It is expressed in Megapixels or MP. Any image generated is divided into millions of small squares or pixels. The higher the pixel density, the higher is its resolution.
The ASI071MC Pro, ASI1600MM, and ASI1600MM Pro come with 16MP resolution but in different sizes. ASI294MC Pro lags in this sector with a resolution of 11.3 MP. ASI183MC has the highest resolution and that is 20.18 MP.
Pixel Size (Micrometer)
As told earlier, every image consists of millions of pixels. But these pixels can be of different sizes based on the camera model. The small pixel sizes are desirable for everyone. They create a more clear and more sharp image.
The ASI183MC tops in this sector too. It properly images with a pixel size of only 2.4 micrometers. Both ASI1600MM and 1600MM Pro have a pixel size of 3.8 micrometers. ASI071MC and ASI294MC Pro have pixel sizes of 4.78 and 4.63 respectively.
Sensor Size (mm)
Sensors control the amount of light in the image. Light is very necessary for high-quality images. So big sensors will generate a better quality image by allowing more light into it. On the other hand, small sensors will deteriorate the quality of photos.
The sensor is an important factor also while comparing two different cameras like QHY and ZWO. The biggest sensor size award goes to the ASI071MC for size of 23.6×15.6 mm. After that comes the ASI294MC Pro with 1.3×13.0 mm.
Then the list is followed by 1600MM, 1600MM Pro, and 183MC Pro. The last one has the smallest sensor size of only 13.2×88 mm.
The word QE is used to express the Quantum Efficiency of the camera. This efficiency rate shows the number of photons converted into electrons. Light is made up of photons. And the image is produced from electrons. So this conversion rate is very important.
Once again the ASI183MC tops the chart. It has a QE of whooping 84%. The second ZWO camera on the list is the ASI1600MM and ASI1600MM Pro with 60% QE. ASI071MC has a 50% QE and this rate is still unknown for ASI294MC Pro.
Capture Speed (FPS)
The capture speed of the camera means the number of frames it’ll capture every second. It is most important for video purposes. The smoothness of the video is hugely dependent on this point. High FPS makes fast movements smooth on the video.
The ZWO ASI1600MM and ASI1600MM pro have the best frame rate of 23 Frames Per Second(FPS). ASI183MC and 294MC Pro support 19 FPS. The FPS of ASI071MC is very low and it is only 10.
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The inside of the camera consists of numerous semiconductors. When these semiconductors get hot, more noise is produced in the photo. The TEC cooling effect is used to keep the conductors cool. As a result the noise also decreases.
ASI1600MM cameras do not have this feature. The rest of the models can cool down the temperature of the semiconductors. The ASI071MC keeps the temperature within 35 to 40 degrees. The other models also keep the temperature within this range.
The price of the ZWO cameras is very different based on their features. To avoid confusion, always compare the price of the camera with the specs it comes with.
The price of the ASI071MC is the highest and it comes at $1550. The 1600MM Pro comes in second with a price of $1350. Its old model 1600MM comes in only $1000. ASI183MC and ASI294MC can be bought for $855 and $1085.
This was the end of our detailed discussion. Now you have to make your choice. Choose carefully as choosing a good camera is as important as telescope apertures.
Question: Which ZWO camera is best?
Answer: The ASI174MM is the best ZWO camera. It has a large sensor for capturing light. Also, this camera has a very 164 FPS frame rate. This camera produces high-quality images for this reason.
Question: What does ZWO stand for?
Answer: ZWO stands for Zuiver Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek. It is in the Dutch language. When translated to English, ZWO stands for Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. The full form of ZWO expresses its principle focus on science.
Question: Do megapixels matter for astrophotography?
Answer: Yes, megapixels matter for astrophotography. Pixels determine the light captured for producing the image. For this reason, larger pixels will produce high-quality astrophotographs. But small pixels also have some advantages and disadvantages as well.
This is all I have on your query: ZWO camera comparison. Now you can easily make your choice.
It is better if you check the camera before buying it. For that, you can join any astronomy club. There you will get the opportunity to use various gadgets.
Till next time!