I've been trying to get in touch with the Leibniz Institute about adopting their automated NLC camera system here in the UK.
I know a number of people have been thinking along similar lines, but has anyone got anywhere yet? I'm pretty sure that, with the considerable media interest now coming Anglesey's way, that I could get funding to install a camera or two over here.
If anyone has had any success, I wonder if you'd be so kind as to tell us all about it, what camera, how it's controlled, housed, etc.?
The Leibniz network appear to use Canon Powershot G6 Cameras and the Swedish Site Powershot G5. Both of these are obsolete. The Powershot G12 the current version has more Pixels so is less sensitive.
I am currently using a Canon 10D with a Sigma f2.8 18mm lens mounted in an open window. I have it set to Apeture Priority at f2.8, ASA 800 exposure is automatic so the time increases as it gets darker.
I have it set to 30 sec intervals but this is very close to failing to finish the download before the next exposure is due. This may be partially due to the USB 1.1 connection and an old laptop that is cluttered.
Housing is a provlem to get a wide angle lens without vigneting - it needs an optical window larger than the lens with the camera right against it.
All I need now are some NLC visible from South of London !
Thanks John. I've used the (very) 'obsolete' Minolta F100 triggered by a Gentled IR box saving to a SD card. It's been hugely successful and reliable and the cameras cost no more than £10 on e-bay when they become available. The image quality, even at 1.2Mp setting is excellent for most computer-based purposes and exceeds HD quality when TV companies want to use the results.
I've gone against a dSLR due to the limited shutter lifetime and cost. I've got enough F100s to outlive me now! The only thing I need now is some public building with a good view to the horizon that can host the camera at no or very little cost.