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Everything posted by madjohn

  1. Nice morning to get up to yesterday, Suns was out so time to get imaging! Sun is fairly quiet at the moment but there's always something to see. Here's two images taken about half hour apart and you can see how much the detail has changed in that time. Solarmax 40 with 2.5X powermate. DMK31 mono camera and Astrotrac mount
  2. It sure is a fabulous sight! great capture Luke
  3. Thought I'd share this image of Sunspot AR1944 as it emerged over the Suns limb on January 2nd Equipment used : Coronado Solarmax 40 scope, DMK31 mono Camera, Astrotrac 320AGXX mount. Best 325 frames of 2000 : Stacked using Autostakkert2 and processed in Photoshop. Hope you like it.
  4. Thanks for the kind comments Yes she was very impressed and was astounded when I was telling her the real sizes of the solar features!
  5. I was visiting my mother yesterday and just had to show her the Sun through my new solar scope. She is very tottery on her pins and so couldn't come out in the garden and view the Sun herself but I managed showed her the great looking proms and several sunspots via my laptop. Afterwards I then managed to get some images captured and am quite pleased with this one. This is a composite of two video images taken using my Skylight AR101 achromat and DMK 31 with 2X barlow. Stacked using Autostackkert 2 and processed in PS I'll post up a higher res link to the image on flickr when I get back to my processing laptop
  6. Hello Chris. The views are more magnified due to the longer focal length and are very crisp. The Lyra was very good and a lot more manageable than the Skylight which is a hell of a long scope and needs a very sturdy mount to put it on. I took some exceptional solar images using the Lyra and it was a great instrument to use visually especially on the planets If you bought one or own one already (a Lyra) you wouldn't be disappointed especially at the price. they have a truly excellent dual speed focuser and has all the features we like such as a three thumbscrew compression ring eyepiece holder
  7. Thank you so much for the kind comments Olly I've only been solar imaging seriously since I bought my DMK 31 mono at Xmas 2012 and badly at that! However i'm learning quickly and am getting some great results from the new Skylight scope I have a lot more experience in deep sky imaging and using DSLRs rather than modified webcams like my DMK - really enjoying it though!
  8. Hi folks Well I took delivery of the new AR 101 F15 on the 25th June and have just written a first impressions review which you can read on SGL here :- http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/191400-skylight-ar101-f15-achromat-review/ It's a beauty!
  9. Thank you Mark. Yes I love the performance and the looks (sounds like a Ferrari ) it really was a leap of faith when I ordered it with my own money. This is the first telescope I've ever bought new - all my others have been second hand (although high quality) I'm still learning to get the best out of it and it's not holding back, it just keeps getting better and better!
  10. Thought I'd post a review of my excellent Skylight AR101 F15 refractor Hope you like it. J. Slinn Skylight review.pdf
  11. Nice image by your customer there Olly. There are many options available but I'm only recently bitten by the solar bug! Hopefully someone else here can advise Olly with more experience of fast solar rate cameras?
  12. I wanted to share this image I took yesterday morning (20th July 2013) of a wonderful looking prominence hovering over the Sun's limb. I've tried to emphasise the shape of the magnetic field lines which explains the uncommon colours. Captured using my Skylight AR101 F15 PST modded solarscope and BF10 blocking diagonal and DMK 31 mono camera. Image is a composite of 4 avis to create a mosaic due to the size of the prom and my scopes FOV
  13. Hi Olly. Glad to see your enjoying solar imaging again like myself in the current spell of good weather here in the UK. I'd go for a DMK 41 camera, although it has a lower frame rate (15fps) it does have a larger chip size which means you should be able to create a full solar disc with just two images You might also find this comparison review of the DMK 21 - 31 - 41 informative reading from two of the worlds most experienced (at least IMHO) solar imagers. http://www.stephenramsden.com/solarastrophotography/reviews/DMK%20review.pdf Hope your well and everything is going great at Les Granges
  14. Hi Dave, thanks for your kind comments! I'm expecting the scope about early/mid April, Richard could do one earlier but I don't have the money as yet to get it any sooner! I've been selling a lot of kit I no longer use or had to decide on which kit I needed the least (this was hardest!) and I've managed to pay the deposit but I'm about 400 quid adrift of the total at the moment. The base model starts at £1350, the final cost of the scope to me will be about £1650 - this includes the Parralax CNC rings and for Richard making me a bespoke ERF lens cell holder at the front and incorporating into the build the facility to mount my Thousand Oaks glass solar filter too ( the advantages of having a hand built scope to your specs) For a handbuilt scope with the Televue objective and Baader focuser I don't think £1650 is an excessive price. I'm mounting it on my NEQ6 with the pillar extension so should be ok.
  15. I have ordered one of these new scopes to use as a stage 2 modded solarscope and also to use as a visual scope by having the shortened OTA threaded to reattach the offcut from the normal tube. I know from other comments from other users that this F15 will perform excellently as a solarscope, both visually and photographically. I beta tested the Richards original 4" F15 a couple of years back and was very impressed with it's optics and the views it served up - especially the planets and double stars (the view of Alberio to date is still the best I have ever seen) I was looking to order one of the original F15s from Richard a few months back not knowing he had stopped the run of them but he cryptically mentioned there was a new 4" project in the offing..... As soon as I saw the news that it was to be 4" Teleview objective at F15 I just leapt at the chance! I'm really looking forward to seeing the prototype at this years Astrofest in three weeks and chatting to Richard more in depth. I've ordered mine with the Baader steeltrack focuser and Mk5 Skysurfer finder, all finished in black and brass Richard makes some beautifully engineered Telescopes both to look at and to use and I for one know that this new scope will be a hit amongst astronomers old and new and I can't wait to use mine!
  16. Hi Bob Yes it was tricky to get the two excatly aligned - especially as the WO 66 has some field curvature at the edges. I had to use the lens correction tool in Photoshop to correct, then using the move tool I had to orientate the two images together manually. Of course I had to also match the background colour and brightness to make it seamless with the original. I used an awful lot of Photoshop trickery to get this right using layers and selection tools etc. This has been an ongoing work in progress for over a year!
  17. Looking very classy I must say! Good work.
  18. Just ordered a A1 print to go on my wall from the excellent astro photo specialists Imagepallette.com. I couldn't resist doing a final tweak to emphasise the dust lanes to the core and enhancing the colours of the disc before I sent off the Tiff file to the developers. This is most definetly the last time I'm adjusting and tweaking this image!...... until I get some HA data in the future! Tweaked image on left - original on right
  19. Cracking looking image coming on there Olly!
  20. Hello George - yes that is part of Andromeda, that's why I had to shoot a load more data using the WO66 as I hadn't realised just how large an area M31 is spread over, astounding really! I hadn't realised just how much of the halo just drifts off from the main body of the galaxy which is understandable as I hadn't thought that my humble 450D would pick it up!
  21. Thank you all for your kind comments - it really was a labour of love and too late I realised early on that my Orion ED80 didn't have a wide enough FOV to get all of the astoundingly large outer halo in the shot (understandably as its normally very hard to pick up, especially with a DSLR) so I had to do a load more work getting more data using my WO 66 Zenithstar to get the outer edges of the shot just to get the image scale right. Olly, I showed you the original smaller FOV image on my mobile phone when I stayed with you in December. I finally got the data and time to finish this marathon project only a few days ago and I'm so pleased how it finally came out after all the work
  22. Nice image Olly! and good luck with the new camera!
  23. Just spent three hours finishing the processing of my last imaging run of Andromeda consisting of 6 hours at 15 min subs. I then manually scaled, blended and eliminated the edges of the FOV distortion from the Williams Optics 66 Zenithstar I was using via the lens correction tool in PS then paste it onto the original image I posted up in November. This image is now the composite of 25 hours of data from 1 min, 2 min, 2.5min, 5,min, 10 min and the final 15 min imaging runs on two different telescopes - namely my Orion ED 80 + 0.8FR and William Optics 66 Zenithstar + 0.8FR Maybe one day I'll be doing narrowband imaging and when I do I may even revisit this project as there is a nice ring of HA emission around Andromeda that would really set this off but in the meantime I'm well satisfied with what I've achieved using my modded Canon 450D!
  24. Thanks all, I deliberately tried not to boost the colours too much, likewise with the contrast as you lose the faint outer halo by doing so. Andromeda is vast in the sky when you realise how far out the faint outer halo extends. It's quite hard to get all the different light levels in one image, hence the time it's taken me to work on this image.
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