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Showing content with the highest reputation on 04/09/18 in all areas

  1. 17 points
    M101 has been challenging to say the least, particularly because of the high LP around here causing my luminance frames to have all sorts of funky gradients and banding and also issues with colour balance. I think I'm relatively happy with this result for now, although I'll definitely aim for more data (at least 10 hours of luminance) to get better SNR, and maybe add some Ha. Equipment: Altair Astro 6" F9 RC Astrograph William Optics 0.8x FF/FR Starlight Xpress SX USB filter wheel Baader LRGB 36mm filters ZWO ASI 1600MM-C Hitec Astro Mount Hub Pro Avalon Linear Fast Reverse Lakeside Astro Autofocuser PoleMaster Software: SGPro, PHD2, PoleMaster, Stellarium Lights - L: 169x60s, R 39x120s, G 60x60s, B 60x60s (Gain 139 Offset 21 @ -20C) Dark, flat and bias frames applied Bortle 5 zone Processed in AstroPixelProcessor & Pixinsight
  2. 9 points
    After the opposition the diameter diameter display is quite fast as well as the phase increase. In this photo we can see Olympus Mons as an orange spot near 01:00 hs and at exactly 9:00 there is a clear line that at first I thought it was a defect in the photograph but then when I went to check I realized it was Aeolis Mensae which has a network of Valleys in that location. It is interesting to note how some formations changed their appearance due to the storm. https://www.astrobin.com/364789/0/?nc=user
  3. 7 points
    My first attempt at imaging and processing a dark nebula, and probably my first really good run at the Atik 383L+ in some proper darkness. I imaged last night from 10pm so I had to content with the moon after midnight. I haven't used darks because I hadn't built a library of darks past 600s. Currently doing them now, takes a while at only 4 per hour! 18 x 900s L with Atik 383L+ 38 x 300s RBG with Canon 40d ED80 FF0.85x EQ6 It was nice to see some detail come through. Please feel free to offer advice. Processing with DSS and PS. I hadn't really a clue on how to process this, and it does look a bit harsh. The DSLR image was quite horrible too ?
  4. 3 points
    Yup, full house. Only thing I didn't get was the Barlow. Got a nice one already. 7 ep's for £280 just so you know, proper bargain me thinks!! ?
  5. 3 points
    My better half has told me to start saving so on that logic I had better get my credit card out.
  6. 3 points
    Thanks so much everyone,you guys are amazing and im genuinely touched by the encouragement and advice and tips. Ive been a good boy and resisted buying cheap eye pieces from ebay.decided if ic can get mid range price or good 2nd hand eye pieces thats the way im going to go.But im not going to rush,i still have to get a chesire and turn left at orion. Hoping to get a ppi pay out fingers crossed. I was telling everyone at work today about seeing saturn most of them not impressed but the odd person was quite interested. Yep last night was amazing for me on a personal level.Everyrhing is slowly coming together. Once again thank you all so much ?
  7. 2 points
    Great framing. The colours are there it just needs a bit more processing. Hope you don't mind but this is a quick tweak of your jpg image in PI, it really shows you captured some good data.
  8. 2 points
    Well,after owning numerous different scopes and mounts..too many to count ive broke the bank and aqcuired hopefully what i think will do for my visual needs and hopefully with a few accessories some imaging. Ive had numerous eq goto mounts and an heq5 but still thought something was missing.3 x 200p,s 2 x ed100,s an ed 120,2 skymax 127s and a cpc800.....but....something was missing..... and i couldnt put my finger on it but i think ive finally found it!. I recently bought an az-eq6 gt which has surpassed all my expectations and only yesterday aqcuired what i consider to be a real bargain as it is in pristine condition for a fraction of the new cost. Although i had never really heard of them i was told by a very reliable source that they were up there with the best. An APM 152 ED Doublet. I havent had chance to look through it yet so cant comment on it but will write a review when i do. My friend has just bought an esprit 150 and wants to get together one night so we can do a side by side comparison which im looking forward to. Has anyone had any experience of one of these scopes and if so what are your thoughts.
  9. 2 points
    Stu I have also the GTI model this is so much quicker and easy I find the Normal doesn’t track as well on solar for some reason , I just leave this and it’s spot on middle 4 hours later but I see your point about price for one job The other up side is you only need one tripod and extension for two mounts
  10. 2 points
    That's a good question I'm interested in knowing as well.... with an SCT the 'star' ends up in the next postal code.....
  11. 2 points
    Laser pointers are the easiest way to point out things in the night sky. Are you a responsible adult? Are you capable of not pointing the laser beam at any flashing lights passing by in the sky? I am presuming you answered 'yes' to both those questions, in which case you really don't need to feal uneasy about anything at all! I use one of these: https://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/rother-valley-optics-5mw-green-laser-pointer.html - it works really well, but does suffer a bit in the cold. I have a special up-the-sleeve technique to keep it warm enough to stay bright! The only thing I would say is that it isn't a toy and be careful who you let use it!
  12. 2 points
    Congrats! Last weekend I went to a friends farm out in the countryside, and had the clearest view of Saturn I have seen thus far. Personally Saturn looks the best of all of the planets when you have good seeing.
  13. 2 points
    As for dew; add all images of identical exposures in DSS and register them. Sort them by date and time, and you should usually be able to see quickly which of them to discard. You'll see that most of then have roughly the same score, stars detected, and sky background %, - then suddenly stars detected will drop together with sky background % and probably also score. This is usually where dew or clouds are causing problems for you. Discard ALL frames that stands out as significantly worse, or they will cause both a worse stacked image, and with uneven color and brightness.
  14. 2 points
    does anyone have experience with this kind of "collar" for DSLR + prime-telephoto astrophotography? Andoer L200 Telephoto Lens Support Long Lens Holder Bracket Compatible for Arca-Swiss Sunwayfoto RRS Benro Kirk Markins Mount http://s.aliexpress.com/RfuyAvMF
  15. 2 points
    There is not a single summer session that I have not observed Saturn. It's simply majestic. Either at 240x-300x up close and personal with my bgo's, or at 50x floating in star field with ES24/68, it is always stunning!
  16. 2 points
    I'm hoping to arrive Thursday afternoon. I'm planning to bring my 6" F10 Ha scope, a 5" F15 triplet, 20x80ED binoscope and a 6" F5 SW refractor. Middle'ish of Yellow field if anyone would like a look. ?
  17. 1 point
    Set up Star adventurer mini for a few 60 second runs with a rough polar align in a very dark area a way from our hotel, only had 12 minutes astro darkness so had to work quickly . It was spookily dark ... Could see the milky way faintly reflected on the ocean. As the moon started to clear the mountains a Polish chap appeared with his camera but no tripod so we managed to communicate and I let him put his camera on my Sam. Then again as packing up a German chap arrived so we did the same again for him. It was quite interesting trying to explain the Sam and how it worked. Here is the one decent image I managed, as you can see when zooming in, focus is off ? Still a nice memory of a holiday booked by the wife as it's a beautiful dark island ( coinsided with full moon though) Thanks for looking. Single Raw file converted with Nikon NX2 and contrast tweaked in CS2. 60 seconds @ F4 and ISO 3200
  18. 1 point
    Hi, I'm Jose from Galicia, Spain. I recently discovered this amazing forum and wanted to get involved as I'm an amateur astronomer looking for the first serious telescope. Greetings
  19. 1 point
    That's looking very nice, and an ambitious one too with that moon about. You seem to have lost star colour and i wonder is it from applying to much luminance in one go? @ollypenricegave me great advice last year about applying just enough at one go so that the colours were just fading, blur the image and increase the saturation slightly. Apply the luminance again this time giving a little more, keep repeating the whole process of blurring and increasing saturation until you can apply 100% of the luminance without washing out the colour and obviously don't blur the final iteration.
  20. 1 point
    Thanks William. I think it’s a good idea lol Thanks Paul. I like them too. Hope to do more.
  21. 1 point
    Nice write up, just one thing, an EQ Mount does not have to be that level, close will do as it’s sorted during the PA...
  22. 1 point
    If RAW isn't captured the camera will try and correct the colour balance. When RAW is captured you have the option of correcting the colour balance in processing. RAW is best as typically camera JPEG setting compresses the image and loses detail.
  23. 1 point
    Captured as RAW images (should be natural colour)?
  24. 1 point
    Different image, but this is a single frame (just a teeny bit over-exposed, this one, but you want as much dynamic range as you can get): and this is what a collection of frames ended up as: By taking lots of images, picking the best and averaging them out it's possible to remove much of the noise from the image. Filters can then be applied to undo some of the effects of atmospheric distortion and make the image sharper. If the noise weren't removed first, you'd be sharpening that as well, which never looks good James
  25. 1 point
    A true dedicated astronomer,and the report just mind blowing . Des
  26. 1 point
    I finally decided to get a Rock64 myself. I was a bit skeptical, after a couple of disastrous attempts: I got an Odroid XU4 first... very fast, but too much power consumption, and I need it to run with a power bank. Also, it seemed a bit unstable. Then an Orange Pi Lite2 (USB3 as well), but it's lacking of good open source software support. Drivers missing here and there, and even bigger instabilities than the odroid. This little rock64 seems promising. I'm running a few sequences with StarQuew, very fast file transfer (under 1 sec, with an ASI 183MM), and at the same time very low power consumption, probably even lower than a raspberry pi (I'm getting an average of 3W when idle, ~5W while shooting frames) I still got a couple of instability issues:the ubuntu 64bit version didn't want to recognize the camera at all, while the 32bit works fine, but I got the camera blocked a couple of time (though I suspect it was because I was messing with wifi and usb cables). Can't wait to try it on the field!
  27. 1 point
    Thanks! I really don't know if seeing was excellent or not if not using the filter, i should shoot with filter and without filter for comparison, maybe next time. The filter i used is "Astronomik ProPlanet IR742".
  28. 1 point
    It's best to capture your luminance and probably blue when the target is at it's highest. Dave
  29. 1 point
    The 127 maks are good scopes - I've seen some great planetary and lunar views through them and they show deep sky objects as well as any 5 inch aperture scope can. It's only the large, extended deep sky objects that can't fit into the field of view - but you can still see them a bit at a time ! One accessory that you will need from the off is a dew shield. The front corrector plate on the maks (and SCT's) is a "dew magnet".
  30. 1 point
    Rob , thank you for the info , maybe it’s because the skies darken fully in the winter that I thought it was best .. I just reckoned that in the warm heavy air of the summer , dust and pollen stay in the air and also there is more of a heat haze , especially at lower levels , but the storm scenario is good because rain will completely cleanse the air .
  31. 1 point
    The APM 152mm ED doublet is indeed a fine scope, I had one myself for a while. The fit and finish was very nice indeed with a very good focuser, much better than the Skywatcher ED series. It also had very good optics, and in my view was the best value in a six inch quality refractor at that time. If I was in the market for a 6 inch ED refractor again (unlikely though ) I would certainly consider going the same route again. If the SW 6 inch ED turns out as good or better than the APM it will be the best value ever in a 6 inch refractor without any doubt. John, any chance of you being loaned an example of the APM to try out against the SW when you have your next example of the latter from FLO to put through its paces? It would actually be a really good and useful comparison as some people may be making the decision between these two scopes - lucky them!
  32. 1 point
  33. 1 point
    Damn, that is impressive. I don't think that I will be seeing the martian moons anytime soon, at least not with my gear.
  34. 1 point
    HP's softpaq system will hold your hand during the process - it's pretty good at getting everything, including BIOS updates
  35. 1 point
    I used to find myself utterly goosed at finding stuff in the sky until I settled on this combo: It's a Skywatcher RACI, and an el cheapo 2nd hand Celestron RDF, on a 3D printed dual holder cheap from a chap in Poland from the well known auction site (dearer branded options do exist). With this combo I can be on anything I can see with the naked eye in < 30 seconds and I heartily commend the combination to you.
  36. 1 point
    Assuming I haven't screwed up the time calculations [and the star looks in about the right place], it looks as if you might have labelled the moons backwards?
  37. 1 point
    Great result. Presumably with the 8SE? It was something I was hoping to have a go at, but every time both satellites were at a reasonable distance from the planet, conditions did not allow for an attempt. Still, as a northerner, this gives me great promise for the October 2020 apparition.
  38. 1 point
    Good heads up Paul, will have a look out for it when I’m in town at the weekend. Not sure I can still get a pint for £3 down here though!
  39. 1 point
    Here is the target I went for. Beside Iris Nebula. Whilst I was waiting for a 900s sub to go through to check if it was ok last night I stacked and processed 5x300s in DSS. Can’t wait to get flats darks and bias and add colour to this, cause I can certainly see some dusty clouds. I reckon I have about 8-10 hours from last night on this (half on the 383L and half on 40d).
  40. 1 point
    Cheers Knighty.. i hope we have clear skies tonight
  41. 1 point
    Did you have DSS also set to align channels too? Alan
  42. 1 point
    I think Infinity is a bit better package than Adventure, having regular 90 degrees star diagonal (vs erect image that comes with Adventure - if you are into day time observing erect image is better to have, but at these prices, quality is questionable). It also has 3 eyepieces instead of two. It really depends on how good you want to see the planets and the moon. If these interest you, maybe a bit more focal length and slower achromat is better deal - take a look at Meade (if you have preference for this vendor for some reason) 90 F/6.7 scope - it could be a bit better while still compact. Mind you, all of these scopes will have CA - or chromatic aberration. Don't know how much it will bother you.
  43. 1 point
  44. 1 point
    Have you considered a 150/750 newton on an AZ mount? It gathers much more light compared to those small fracs. There's a GoTo version too.
  45. 1 point
    Good choices. I also observe on a balcony in winter. I went for a 100ED and I certainly wouldn't want to go any bigger with a refractor. It's a little cramped but OK.
  46. 1 point
    Pity that Dob is out of the question, because if there is any telescope that "can do it all" - it would be dob mounted Newtonian. What would be your budget? For me personally, next scope in "to do it all" category would be quality APO refractor in 80-100mm class mounted on nice stable alt/az mount (like AZ4). It does not have to be triplet apo (unless "do it all" includes astro photography - then go for triplet), good ed doublet can do as long as it has quality glass and figure. Skywatcher Evostar ED offerings fit well into this description, both 80 and 100mm. There are a couple of other vendors that you might also consider, like photoline from TS (80mm APO triplet, 80mm ED/FPL53 F/7 doublet or same specs 100mm version, ...). If these all are over the budget and you can tolerate some CA, simple SW 100mm F/10 achromat can be very good scope in this role (a bit longish, but very lightweight and manageable). For compactness and nice views - look at Maks in 102 - 127mm range. Many people would not consider these as do it all scopes because they lack "wide field" capability, but they have almost the same focal length as for example 8" F/6 dob - which I certainly consider do it all scope (and probably best one). Sure, you won't be able to get 2 or 3 degrees of FOV with it, but 1.5 degrees is quite doable - enough for all but largest (like M31 Andromeda) targets out there. One more thing to mention, if you want "do it all" scope - avoid short tube achromats (with maybe exception being ST80 - that is kind of iconic, pretend to be "do it all on a cheap" offering) - these will fair poorly on the Moon and planets.
  47. 1 point
    What scope do you use for imaging? I have been doing DSLR astroimaging for about two years, and in my opinion both DSLR and OSC cameras do not handle well light polluted (also with Moon) sky. Especially in the red emission nebulae subject. I was able to get some decent results under suburban sky (NELM about 5mag) but without Moon, and when the atmosphere was transparent. If conditions were far from good, then all red emissions were very noisy and bad quality. If you have bad LP or Moon in the sky you may try with something else, like open clusters. You will then have much background to sample and remove gradient, and processing should be easier.
  48. 1 point
    I think you will be very happy with your choice. APM make some very nice scopes, and the 152 doublet will be excellent for visual of all kinds. The AZ-EQ6 is a lovely mount too, very solid, stable and accurate. I had a Vixen 150ED f9 on the same mount and enjoyed it alot.
  49. 1 point
    There seems to be quite a bit of light pollution, so a filter for that should help, but there's also a circular effect akin to vignetting but with darker and lighter rings around the centre, which may need some diagnosing. But there's data there. Out of interest, did you stack the different length subs together? This can sometimes cause problems and for those targets where it's useful, layering them together after stacking can produce better results. Quick'n dirty process in StarTools of the central area:
  50. 1 point
    Welcome to the forum. I'm sure you will get plenty of good advice on here. One of the problems is that you are trying to cover too much with one scope. The requirements for an imaging scope are different from a visual scope, and deep sky Astrophotography has quite different requirements to solar system imaging. One suggestion would be to read the book 'Making Every Photon Count' which explains all there is to know about deep sky AP.
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