We will be using an SBIG ST-8E camera, which employs a Kodak KAF 1602 CCD chip.
Our camera has a parallel port interface to a computer. Data can be transferred from camera to computer at a rate of about 70,000 bytes per second. This is much, much slower than modern USB transfer rates ...
So, by default, this camera has two drawbacks when used on our telescope and connected to our computers: it oversamples the point-spread function, so that stars are giant blurry blobs, and it takes a long, long time to transfer each image to the computer. Is there any way to reduce these annoying problems?
YES! One can BIN the image
To "bin" an image means that one creates a smaller copy from the original, by combining adjacent pixels into single "superpixels."
If the original image is oversampled, then binning doesn't really remove much (or any) information, and it DOES make the image much smaller.
I usually bin the images from our camera 3x3 before reading them out.
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