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About Emil

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  1. Hmmm... Beer... Occasionally I receive donations for AutoStakkert!2 or Castrator, and it is very much appreciated. BUT the software is freeware and I will provide support regardless of donations I receive, it only depends on the amount of time I have on my hand. The same goes for the development of the software. I do that in my free time, and although it can take up a lot of that, I only work on it if I want to (and it is not clear outside so I can do my own planetary imaging ) In all honesty, donations do help me keep motivated - and/or drunk - but if they were the only motivation I had, I would not be working on it. It is a hobby. I make software for fun, and I like helping out. (A bit off-topic: I recently started a yahoo group for AS!2 support, to help keep my inbox more organised. It will also decrease my response time quite a bit, so if you have questions/suggestions for AS!2, please send them there: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/autostakkert/ )
  2. Whenever AS!2 shows a frame, it actually does a little bit of analysis on that frame already. I wouldn't pay too much attention to this number though. You could use it to compare images taken with the same filter under the exact same transparancy conditions and camera settings, only then the number would have any kind of real meaning I guess. It might be nice to add the option to save the average quality of the stack somewhere, but it could be rather deceiving when the transparancy is just a tiny bit variable.
  3. MJPEG will be supported in the next release. Having said that, it is probably a good idea to not save to MJPEG in the first place, because compression is usually not a good idea. For now running the files through Castrator should do the trick.
  4. Just a quick question: have you change your processing when working with the drizzled image? To me it appears that you simply applied the exact same wavelet scheme with the 1.5x drizzled and normal sized images, which of course is not a good idea. The effect of the size of sharpening filters (wavelet scales, etc) is absolutely huge. That is one of the reasons it is so difficult to compare drizzled versus non-drizzled images. Drizzling also inherently makes images a bit cripsier (noisier perhaps even). You have to take this into account when processing the stack. You could downsize the drizzled image before wavelets ( 66.67% should do the trick in this case), but then you also have to think about which kind of resizing method you will use. All of them have different properties, and many of them make the image a bit smoother (bicubic) than it really is, or sharper (lanczos, etc). By the way, the 1.5x drizzling in AS!2 is actually just 3x drizzling downsized to 50% using a bicubic resize filter. Having said all that, I find that for normally sampled images there is no need to use drizzling, unless you just want a bigger image, than it is fine to use it (but be ware of potential drizzling artifacts, so you HAVE to adapt your processing for optimal results). Only if you really under-sample the images you might see a small improvement in resolution. I have seen this especially in deepsky images of globular clusters, where the stars in the drizzled image were slightly smaller, and stars touching in a normal stack were actually separated from each other in the drizzled image. Drizzlig also relies on VERY accurate sub-pixel alignment, this can also be the limiting factor. If the uncertainty in alignment is larger than sub-pixel level, there is no advantage to drizzling. Now back to the original comparison images. What settings did you use for Registax or AutoStakkert!2? The size and location of the APs are essential, as are the quality estimator settings, and the amount of frames you chose to stack. I just want to point out that testing is actually rather difficult. Of course you can say this is a test that shows what YOU can do with both Registax 6 and AS!2, and those tests are indeed very helpful (!), but it does not have to reflect of what is possible in each of the programs. I'm not an expert on Registax 6, so I can't help you there, but I do know a bit about AS!2 and I'm always willing to give some pointers. I also just started a yahoo group on AS!2, for those interested: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/autostakkert About pre-aligning images: this shouldn't be necessary in AS!2. If you find AS!2 has trouble with stabilizing specific recordings, I would be more than happy to see what I can do about that. Cheers, Emil
  5. Well thank you. I guess Note that the current version can't deal with flats properly (it will make the image too bright). This is fixed in a beta version but will only be live in a couple of weeks, so hang in there. If you don't get good results using AS!2, please do let met know. I'm always looking for ways to improve the software. Often it is a simply matter of one setting that needs to be changed in order to get good results, so send me an email and ask! Cheers, Emil
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