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Everything posted by AstroAdam

  1. Borrowed a pair of revelation 20x100s (I think?) for a bit - fantastic bins when they were working well - some amazing views through them, but went out of collimation virtually every time they got moved around! I'd love another pair of big bins though...
  2. Hale-Bopp is up there, but as it revealed itself over time and got more and more visible, I wouldn't call it 'satisfying' as such, more spectacular! Also , Saturn, Jupiter were all WOW moment, but satisfying is when I see something I've wanted to see for a long time and it's previously eluded me... In which case, in no particular order... 1) First sight of the Veil Nebula, both eastern and western through an OIII filter in my 12" Dob. This is one object that can go from invisible to spectacular with the addition of an OIII into the mix. Have seen it since in apertures down to a 102mm frac with the same filter. 2) First sight of the Rosette Nebula with the same filter. 3) Getting boring now, but my first view of M42 under dark skies with the OIII. Again, spectacular, but satisfying in that it was the first time I'd really seen it resemble the images - the most amazing complex nebular structure I've ever sat there and taken in - I was there for a few hours at least, just drinking in the views... A 'Chocolate Box' object agreed, but I never tire of that particular chocolate....
  3. The Rosette isn't that hard with an OIII filter, though obviously the darker your skies and the larger the aperture the better. I've got a 12" Dob in skies that aren't that fantastic, and I've managed it a fair few times, but have always needed the OIII filter to do so... I just look for the recognisable central cluster, then I find slowly panning around the area really helps to pick out the mottled nebulosity surrounding it. Once you've seen it, that elusive doughnut is easier to find next time...
  4. Yup - a definitely second on the Bahtinov mask. It makes so much difference. Either that or an auto-focuser, which can wither be bought or self-built, but costs more and is more difficult to set up and run. I'd stick with the mask - you can pick a decent one up (star sharp masks are great) for about £15-20 I think... Or you can make your own one of those too... the following link is a bahtinov mask generator that you can use to make one out of thin foam or similar yourself.... http://astrojargon.net/maskgen.aspx
  5. Thanks Peter. It takes a bit of playing with the proportions in which you mix the OIII and Ha into the various channels. Also, re-merging the Ha as an additional luminance layer gives it more 'pop' and really boosts the detail in the fainter parts of the nebula.
  6. Yes - I noticed this one too, but it wasn't enough to bother me that much. Would of course prefer to eliminate it. I do have a flattener for this scope, but unfortunately it's not compatible with my current imaging train. This little ED70 doesn't have the flattest field ever, but its strange that it appears to be more pronounced in one corner.... I'll have a play next time I use it (recently been imaging with my 102ED more...).
  7. Great kit to start out with! Welcome to the fold!
  8. Cheers Good old Bonusprint Makes me think of the envelopes you sent your films off in in the 80s after your holiday, with a cheque, to get them back a week later....
  9. Was that in the UK? Have been tempted myself... who did you use?
  10. Definitely agreed that for 600secs integration that’s a heck of a result on such a dark object!
  11. I love the two jets emanating from the top of the feature I think David's referring to on the right. Apparently caused by the solar wind from a young star behind the dark cloud...
  12. Hi Everyone! It's been a while since I posted any of my images, but I've been working hard to improve my technique over the last year, and combined with the move from DSLR (Canon 1100D) to CCD (Atik 314L - not the plus one ), I've been waiting until I got it all sorted and I was starting to be happy with the results. So here's my first ever bi-colour Ha/Oiii image - The wall region on the North America Nebula in Cygnus. Details as follows:- Camera – Atik 314L Mono Exposure – Ha – 2hr 20mins, OIII – 3hr 15min Filters – Astronomik 12nm Ha Filter, Baader 8nm OIII filter Telescope – Ikharos ED70 f/6 Mount – Skywatcher HEQ5 with Rowan Belt Mod Guidescope – Off-axis Guidecam – SX Lodestar Guide Software – PHD2 Capture Software – APT Stacking and Initial Processing – MaximDL Post-Processing – Photoshop CC and Lightroom CC. For more detail, feel free to take a look at the post about it on my website:- https://www.astrosite.co.uk/north-america-nebula-in-cygnus-bi-colour-narrowband-13-10-18-14-10-18/ With this image, I stacked and combine using Maxim, then re-combined the Ha with the Bi-Colour image as a luminance layer to bring out the detail and reduce the noise. Hope you like it :-) Cheers, Adam
  13. Ah! Interesting concept and execution..
  14. I would prefer without the car, but I think there's a reason for leaving it in there - i.e. it shows it's upside down - made me thing for a split-second anyway Can't think of any other reason it'd be there, as it's so easy to 'shop out...
  15. I've used a C8, and my current LX90 ACF (another 8" Catadioptric scope) for planetary with a 2.5x Barlow and an ASI120MC cam. I have used them for deep sky too, though I only have a mobile setup (not an obsy) so guiding a long FL scope like this is more of a challenge, so I tend to stick to refractors for that. You'd need an F6.3 reducer to speed it up a bit, or it'll take quite a while to collect the photons you need for a decent image, as well as having a very small field of view, and being harder to guide (if you decide to do so). The bump likely knocked it out of collimation if nothing else - it's likely that in the dark, even not covered, it should have no issues (apart form being the normal dew magnet that ANY SCT is ). A dew shield will cover it up anyway.
  16. Actually, it's an EQ3-2, so not too bad actually for visual - though I do like it on my HEQ5. Also works well on my Minitower, though not quite so sturdy
  17. Yup - a Tal 100RS - great f/10 achromat, and not too bad a price on the mount, though would prefer to stick it on something a bit sturdier :). Prices of these have gone up in recent years. I paid £150 for mine about 2 years or so ago, that was OTA only, so this isn't a bad price. Lovely 'proper' telescope
  18. Yup - I didn't have to select either of the core entries that now seem to be selectable (and not be default), when doing a fresh install. They only became selectable when I ran the install as an upgrade. Just a glitch by the look of things - sounds like they may have sorted on the as-yet-unreleased version of the drivers that Olly has been given.
  19. Hmmm - interesting...! When I was having the issue, I was doing a clean install of (current latest), and I didn't have that option - everything in the core section was selected (and greyed out). However, now I have a working install, if I go to install the latest over the top, those two you mentioned are now optional, and I have to select them manually, like you said. I'm leaving as-is at the moment, as it's working, but it looks like doing a clean install of the latest version isn't possible currently - just an update.
  20. The service that wasn’t staying running didn’t even need the camera to be plugged in to do so. It should have been running regardless, so it was even lower level than that . Made it easier to troubleshoot...
  21. Had a breakthrough. I’ve taken the drivers two versions back (Jan sometime) after finding somewhere to get them, and it seems to have sorted it. Looks like the last two versions of the drivers released may have a bug... will flag it up to Atik and ask the question... Cheers for the suggestions though ?.
  22. Hi All, Is anyone here using an Atik 314L or 314L+ with Windows 10? I've just bought an Atik 314L off someone on this very forum. Today I've been trying to install it and not having much luck. I can install the drivers (latest from the Atik site) absolutely fine, including the ASCOM driver. The camera is picked up (oddly under USB Controllers, but searching the web, that seems to be normal). I can select 'Atik Camera' in the ASCOM selector, but when I click 'Properties' to actually select the 314L itself within the Atik ASCOM driver, there are no cameras listed. I've tried this on two (completely different) Windows 10 machines and had the same issue (one a physical Win10 laptop, one a Windows 10 VM). I have a Windows 7 VM, and it installs absolutely fine there, and is selectable with no problem. A bit of digging has revealed the the Windows service 'ArtemisHSCService' that the driver uses to communicate with the camera is failing to stay running on the Win10 Machines. It starts, then immediately stops again. It tries to start again about every few seconds, starting for an instant each time then stopping again. This doesn't seem to happen on Windows 7 (i.e. the service stays running). I'm really confused, as searching around the web, as far as I can see, others are using these cameras fine on Windows 10. If it was happening on just one machine, then I'd think it was a quirk of that machine, but in this case, its on both a Laptop and a virtual machine - separate hardware and separate installs. Even very different update levels (the VM is a lot older and hasn't;t been updated in a while, whereas the Lappy is bang up to date). Anyone have any suggestions, as it's driving me nuts!!!
  23. I've been using an HEQ5 for the last five years. I've had everything up to an 8" newt mounted on it for imaging, but mostly for imaging, I've used up to a 102mm F7 Starwave refractor. Handles that, plus all the periphery kit including side-by-side guidescope etc, brilliantly. I have a setup that is not permanently set up, so can't leave it out. I would never go up to an NEQ6 for this - the HEQ5 is more than adequate. Also, it's a lot easier to belt-mod, to get even better results. Most imaging is done with smaller refractors anyway, but like I said, I've had decent results with my Newt too...
  24. Jupiter, captured on 21/05/17 at 22:41. Best 4000 of 8000 frames captured with an ASI120MC through an 8" Meade LX90ACF, with 2.5x Revelation Barlow, mounted on a iOptron Minitower Alt-Az mount. Processed in Autostakkert, with wavelets in Registax and then finished off in Lightroom. Cheers all!
  25. Its a very basic scope that will not give you the magnifications (at least at good quality) at the levels it says. Its unlikely you'll see much in the way of faint stuff unless you have very dark skies, and even then, you won't see that much. However, as you have it now, your best bet is to give it a go. I'd say you will probably be able to see Jupiter as a little disc, along with its moons, and you'll also likely be able to see the rings of Saturn, though maybe just as an elongated shape rather than in any detail. If you've never looked at the Moon before through a telescope, it will look surprisingly good to you (best viewed when not full), and you'll see details such as craters and mountains. I remember my first moon views through a tiny plastic-lensed refractor (lens-based) telescope when I was a child, and they blew me away! It IS a basic scope, but in the end, you have it now, so give it a go and see what you can see. If it gets you interested, then go along to a local Astronomical society, and start playing with the better quality 'toys' to see the difference. This hobby doesn't have to be VERY expensive to be rewarding, but unfortunately, a little layout is required to start with, and the lower end kit depending on your expectations, can get your interest started, no matter what anyone says. It can also end up with you being disillusioned if you're expecting miracles, so thats why the moon and planets are often a good place to start.
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