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JimS

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Posts posted by JimS


  1. Hello Jim. Not being able to afford the tools/toys I totally understand, as do most others, so don't worry !! .. It's all to easy to end up in debt after seeing others (very few when you count the forum ID's) on the forum having the toys they want. My 'bad'.

    No worries. Should be in a position to get my grubby mitts on one early next year hopefully.

    for the moment i'm just irritated because the PS3 cam I have seems to be pretty poor compared to others. However the comment regarding two 'types' is interesting.


  2. Not all ps3 eye cams are made equal - in fact I think there are at least 2 different types. Some of them are incredibly noisy/show amp glow (pure green pixels at 10s, no gain, at 4s covers approx 1/4 of the sensor - practically useless), other ones show no noise at all (I hand pick these ones and send others back). Out of approx 50 cameras only 2 have shown no noise at all with the exposure at 10s, rest seem to have a little (loads if gain is used0, and others have awful amp glow. I tend to leave gain at minimum and just increased exposure, you'll get best results that way.

    Apparently you can also debayer a ps3 eye cam fairly easily, might try that next. Someone on here did some fantastic lunar images with one.

    You using the SDK too?

    Never had the crashing though, I'd try reinstalling the .net libraries..

    I've not downloaded / used the SDK. I managed to SharpCap to adjust the framerate and therefore exposure time but obviously this is useless when the noise is there. Is there anyway of telling if the camera is good/bad from a model no? Is it just blind luck?


  3. Had one of those nights you would rather forget last night. Managed to get a good polar alignment approximation through my polarscope, and got everything set up and then it seemed to go wrong from there. Couldn't even get my CGEM to align and calibrate properly even though I have done it many times before, just didn't seem to want to play. Gave up in the end and just manually drove to targets.

    Then the main issue started arising with the PS3 camera that I have acquired. The camera seemed very, very noisy and I still couldn't seem to find any but the very brightest stars ie Vega, Capella. What sort of settings are people using for the PS3 camera; is there a routine to go through such as setting it up in camera software first before opening PHD. Then my laptop kept crashing out about a minute after turning on the PS3 camera. It did it in PHD, SharpCap and the PS£ driver program. Has anyone else experienced this?

    Thanks for any help.


  4. Didnt seem to get any response in discussion so I have added this thread to Getting Started - 


     


    I have done a little bit of manual guiding using my Logitech webcam through a StarTravel 80, but this has been imaging Orion Nebula where there is an easy bright guide star to use.


     


    Last night, I tried to venture further and have a go at other targets such as Pinwheel galaxy and Whirlpool Galaxy. Both times I could not find a guide star at all through the webcam using SharpCap. I was initially going to use this as a test and then have a go at using PHD for the first time, however gave up as I just couldn't find a guide star and just did a couple of 30 second unguided images.


     


    The webcam can pick up brighter stars such as Capella and Procyon (used these as part of my alignment process) but really seems to struggle on anything else, even with frame rate, exposure and gain pushed as far as they'll go. Would PHD be able to push the exposure of the webcam to be able to pick up stars or am I going to struggle from the outset? If so is there a cheap(?!) entry level guide cam available out there that someone could recommend?


     


    Cheers


     


    Jim



  5. Hello all,

    I have done a little bit of manual guiding using my Logitech webcam through a StarTravel 80, but this has been imaging Orion Nebula where there is an easy bright guide star to use.

    Last night, I tried to venture further and have a go at other targets such as Pinwheel galaxy and Whirlpool Galaxy. Both times I could not find a guide star at all through the webcam using SharpCap. I was initially going to use this as a test and then have a go at using PHD for the first time, however gave up as I just couldn't find a guide star and just did a couple of 30 second unguided images.

    The webcam can pick up brighter stars such as Capella and Procyon (used these as part of my alignment process) but really seems to struggle on anything else, even with frame rate, exposure and gain pushed as far as they'll go. Would PHD be able to push the exposure of the webcam to be able to pick up stars or am I going to struggle from the outset? If so is there a cheap(?!) entry level guide cam available out there that someone could recommend?

    Cheers

    Jim


  6. Just on a tripod with the stock lens 

    Yeah i was looking at the LP filters £130 quid! 

    i'm going to give it a go tonight if the clouds stay away, i will take a look for some examples too.

    thanks 

    Buy direct from Europe. With the exchange rate at the moment it is closer to £100.

    • Like 1

  7. Cheers William.

    That's a massive improvement over my efforts, wow! Did you change the levels / curves at all? I'm trying to read up as much as possible about processing images, are there any resources you would recommend?

    Not sure if you saw my thread about Canon LiveView but I have a massive blue tint on my Jupiter effort as well as apparently this image. Obviously more noticeable on Jupiter. Both sets were with camera at prime focus with no filters. Any ideas what might be causing the blue bias in the images?

    I'm definitely aware i'll have to start adding darks, flats etc., this effort was more about testing my rig out after a long hiatus but thanks for your advice.

    Jim


  8. Hi all,

    On Saturday night I had my first go at using the EOS video recording software for the Canon using LiveView at prime focus on my SCT.

    I used Jupiter as it seemed an easy first target and I had already done some capturing using a webcam. Whilst the resolution seemed very good, the whole video is rather blue. I haven't got the image at the moment but I will update this evening when I get home.

    The settings as far as I can remember were fairly standard at ISO400 and shutter speed of approx 1/30 second and a daylight white balance.

    Does anyone know why this would have happened? Would I need a UV/IR filter?

    Cheers!


  9. After finally getting my CGEM working again and a lovely clear night last night, I decided to get back to trying to image.

    I had a go at Orion Nebula to test out the gear and get myself back into swing of things.

    Used Canon 450D with my 8" SCT, and manually guided using a piggyback 80mm refractor and webcam. Focused the Canon using a bahtinov mask. Took 7 exposures for 30 seconds at ISO400.

    Stacked using Deep Sky Stacker and tweaked levels and curves using photoshop.

    Orion Nebula - 210215 #2 small.tif

    I'm happy with this first effort but I am aware that a lot of practise will be needed with all aspects of the process, as well as far more exposure time and getting my camera settings correct.

    Any feedback gratefully accepted!

    • Like 3

  10. Finally all sorted!

    Managed to order a second hand NXS hand controller from eBay and flashed it CGEM. Worked straight away. Very happy.

    Even better is that FLO have been fantastic in their support and and happily accepted a return on the now superfluous motor board for a full refund. Top marks to them and I would post a review if I had enough posts......

    So now an apology is in order for the rubbish weather recently, as I am sure newly repaired scopes are just as bad as new purchases. My bad....!

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