The Altair GPCAM3 287M is a specialist solar, planetary and guiding camera with an extremely fast frame rate and Global shutter.
The frame rate can reach a maximum 540fps on a high-end laptop, earning it the nickname of “Baby Shark”.
The 0.4mp sensor has 6.9µm pixels in a 720x540 pixel array to suit long focal length telescopes.
This camera is of particular interest to planetary, lunar and solar imagers, especially for long focal length, high resolution imaging. We recommend this camera for advanced users, who are familiar with long focal length imaging with a crop factor.
Solar Imaging: The pixel size is well suited to refractors of 115mm or larger, and the Altair Solar Wedge and 2-3X Flat Field Barlow, or the DayStar Quark, as well as reflectors of larger aperture using Baader Astro Solar Film and the Altair NUV 395nm filter.
Auto Guiding: Another application is guiding with an OAG or Off Axis Guider, where the relatively large pixel size would be ideal for guiding at the full focal length of the main imaging scope. The camera has an ST4 auto-guiding port, and can be used to auto-guide directly with mounts from all the major manufacturers.
Lunar and planetary imaging: Not only is the GPCAM287M ideal for high speed Mono planetary imaging with filters, but also delivers impressive high power lunar imaging results with large reflectors.
File formats: The camera supports 8bit or 12bit ADC output. The camera can be fully controlled in AltairCapture and SharpCap to output uncompressed .AVI and .SER video files for solar system imaging, compressed MP4 files for social media uploads, as well as all common still image formats such as .JPEG .PNG (12bit) .TIFF (12bit) .BMP, and .FITS (12bit) for deepsky imaging.
To get an idea of what this camera is capable of, we’ve included lunar images with a 10” reflector and 2X Flat Field as well as a screenshot showing the capture area. 10,000 frames were acquired in approximately 19 seconds of which only 1000 were stacked in Autostakkert and Registax.
SPECIAL OFFER! FREE 1 YEAR SharpCap PRO License with all Altair GPCAM3 Cameras! Click here for more SC PRO feature info. Just download the latest SharpCap, connect your camera, register when the screen pops up and sign up for your free license. Sharpcap PRO has the amazingly accurate guidescope polar alignment routine, focus assistance, live flat field subtraction and many more great features to make deepsky, EAA or solar system imaging that much easier. Download SharpCap now to take advantage of this special offer.
Support & warranty: Altair delivers proper on-shore English-speaking UK/EU support with a 2 year manufacturer warranty against defects in materials and workmanship. New users should definitely visit the Altair Astro Support website or www.altairastro.help or the Altair Astro Facebook Group where you can get answers to technical questions, as well as sharing tips and techniques, to get the best out of your camera. The AltairCapture software interface supports most European languages including English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Korean, Polish.
Included in the box:
Camera body with dual USB3.0/2.0 socket and ST4 guide port.
1.5m High-speed USB3.0 cable.
1.5m ST4 guide cable.
1.25 inch x nosepiece with female 1.25" filter thread on the front.
(Optional 2" OD Nosepiece with dual 2 and 1.25" filter threads is available, code GPCAM-2IN)
CS-Mount insert (12.5mm back-focus) is pre-installed on camera. (Optional 5mm extension adapter is available for C-Mount lenses requiring 17.5mm back-focus.)
Removable Clear blocking filter with AR anti-reflection coatings. (Removable for sensor cleaning).
Plastic dust cap 1.25".
Silicon “dust trapping” dust cap for darkframes.
Note: This camera does not come with software in the box. To operate the camera you will need to download the latest camera drivers at www.altairastro.help (opens new window).
Sensor & performance specifications:
USB Interface: USB 3.0 and USB2.0 supported.
Colour/Mono: Mono/ Color
Sensor: SONY IMX287
Resolution: 0.4 Megapixel, 720px x 540px
Pixel Size: 6.9x6.9 μm
Sensor Size: 1/2.9" – 4.97mm x3.73 mm
Sensor Diagonal : 6.21 mm
Optical Window: AR-coated 350-1050nm transmission wavelength
Shutter: Global shutter
Read Noise: 1.41 – 0.91e-
Qe Approx: 71%@525nm
Full Well Capacity: 11459.84 e-
Adc: 8 / 12 bit
Cooling: Air Passive Cooled
Max Frame Rate:
640x480 611FPS ROI
320x240 1124FPS ROI
Approx. 50% of above
Guide Port: Yes
Region Of Interest ROI: Yes
Camera Body Format and compatibility:
Camera body is shaped like a 1.25” telescope eyepiece and will replace an eyepiece in standard 1.25” accessory ports common on almost all telescopes.
Passive Cooling: CNC machined aluminium casing with external Heat-sink contacting rear of sensor.
Camera body overall length: 73 mm
Weight grams: 70 g (camera net weight)
Sensor to flange distance and lens compatibility:
Front cover glass mount is removable for cleaning and can be swapped with either a clear or UV/IR block glass as required.
CS/C-mount lens compatibility: Camera has a C-Mount female threaded front with 12.5mm sensor-to-flange spacing allowing use of CS Lenses. For C-Mount lenses, an optional 5mm extension is required, producing the required 17.5mm sensor-to-flange spacing.
Astro filter thread adapter: Included, 1.25" OD and 2 OD (optional), Female thread
Sensor surface distance from flat end of CS-mount adapter: 12.5 mm
Sensor surface distance from flat end of 1.25" / M42 Astro adapter: 37 mm
0.3 W (standby)
Max operating temp: 50 °C
Lowest operating temp: -10 °C
Max operating humidity: 80 % RH
Power source in Volts: 5V DC (via USB cable)
Dust caps included:
Protective silicon “dust trapping” end-cap for camera CS-thread.
Plastic end cap for 1.25" nosepiece.
Software & OS support:
Instructions & quickstart quide: searchable knowledgebase at www.altairastro.help.
Drivers & AltairCapture software download: www.altairastro.help (login required).
Driver support: PHD2, AltairCapture, SharpCap, NINA, APT, FireCapture, other software requires ASCOM driver downloadable at www.altairastro.help (login required).
SharpCap PRO Free License: https://www.sharpcap.co.uk/altair
AltairCapture OS support: Win 8/10.
Recommended PC hardware: 2014 or later manufacture date, Intel i3 or i5 (or equivalent) 8GB RAM. Intel USB Host Controller 1.0 or later preferable. A PC with separate graphics card will deliver better display quality.
Dual USB Port: USB 3.0 and USB2.0 are both supported (USB2.0 gives lower frame rates).
ST4 Port & Cable: Standard ST4 Opto-Isolated, 1.5m cable, iOptron, Celestron, Skywatcher.
Warranty: 2 years manufacturer warranty against defects in materials and workmanship. Customer to return camera to point of purchase.
Availability: If out of stock, click on the red "Notify when in stock" button above to receive an email when product is ready to ship.
Altair Astro and dealers reserve the right to change the product specification and/or price at any time without notice.
Delivery Weight Package