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About Xiga

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  1. Deep sky imaging showcase 2017

    Here are my 5 best of 2017. Actually, aside form a couple of others, it's pretty much my entire output from 2017, lol. The biggest change for me this year was, getting the D5300 modded and picking up an Ha and OIII filter. I also picked up a cheap mono camera (IDS UI-6250SE) 2nd hand for doing Lunar work, which i used for the mosaic below.
  2. And another Horsehead...

    Here's what I do if I notice a rogue satellite trail after I've already made it far enough down the rabbit hole that i don't want to start over... Use the Line tool in PS to draw over the satellite trail. This will tell you the angle that it is at. Then rotate it by whatever angle is needed in order to make the line either horizontal or vertical. Create a New Layer and run Noel Carboni's Vertical (or Horizontal) Banding Reduction. This will remove the trail. If you're happy that no other vertical or horizontal banding is present in the image, then use a Hide All Layer Mask & the Brush tool (v. small) to only remove the trail and nothing else. Finally, rotate the image by the same angle but in the opposite direction to get back to your original position. Then just crop off the extra real estate PS has added on to the edges. This one's got me out of a pickle on a few occasions. :-) Great image btw. What was the camera & scope?
  3. Thank you good Sir
  4. Thanks all. I definitely prefer the 1st one now myself. ps - This object has a special meaning for me, as, it was the No.1 object that i have always wanted to image, ever since i started into this hobby 2 and a bit years ago now. I think we all must know what our own personal No.1 object was, and how satisfying it was to finally bag it.
  5. Thanks all! I do also prefer the first one myself. I think it has a bit more depth to it. It was also a lot easier to process, as getting the colours right in the 2nd one was a lot more difficult, and this probably comes through in the final image. I may play about with it a bit more over the weekend. @scitmon yes I took this with the SW 80ED, and dedicated field flattener, so FL was 510mm. It's a great wee scope alright. The D5300 is great too. Has a brilliant sensor for such a low cost camera.
  6. Hi guys I've been staring at these for long enough now that i'm effectively going blind to them, so i think it's time to post them and see what you guys think as well. It's late, so i'll keep this brief! 10 x 1200s Ha (2" Baader) 9 x 1200s OIII (2" Baader) So not much exposure at all really, but it's all i'm going to get for a while. The Ha was shot low on the horizon, and with a big bright moon up, but at least i managed to get the OIII the following night (mostly) before the moon made it's re-appearance. The usual Bias, Flats, and aggressive dithering. Stacked in APP, and processed in PS. For the Bi-Colour version i used one of Carboni's actions to synthesize the green channel (with Ha in Red and OIII in Blue). For the SHO version, i used 80% of Ha and 20% of OIII to synthesize an SII, then used tonemapping to bring out the colours. Normally i prefer the hubble palette, but i'm not sure about this one. I think i prefer the Bi-Colour one. Dunno. Let's see what i think in the morning! C&C welcome, and thanks for looking :-)
  7. Rosette-bicolor (Ha OIII)

    Thanks Rodd. I mainly just wanted to see the intensity level of the OIII compared to the Ha, so this showed it perfectly. ps - Your data is incredibly clean. Unlike my own DSLR NB data of the same object, which I will post eventually, once I manage to hit a colour scheme I like! lol
  8. Rosette-bicolor (Ha OIII)

    Very nice indeed Rodd! Can I ask a favour please? Would you mind posting what your Ha and O-III frames looked like just before you combined them into the Bicolour version?
  9. Thanks Adam. Have you done much DSO work with the big 300mm scope? I'm sure it catches every small gust of wind compared to the wee 80mm
  10. I can spot a bit of vertical banding No easy fix springs to mind, but working in Layers is definitely not recommended, lol. All joking aside, this is seriously impressive. Hat, tipped.
  11. Thanks guys! I actually quite enjoyed processing this one. Certainly much easier than dealing with a screen full of nebulosity for a change! lol
  12. Hey guys We had a couple of clear night over the weekend (finally!) so i decided to put the man-flu to one side and get back to imaging. I mostly went for the Rosette Nebula (still a WIP for now) but once it passed behind the neighbour's house i was starved of any other Ha targets. The big, bright moon was well up at this stage, but the skies were crystal clear so it seemed like such a waste not to use them. So, i decided to go for M81 & M82, seeing as they were well positioned, and just hoped that shooting galaxies under a bright moon wouldn't be anywhere near as bad as shooting nebulae in RGB under the same conditions. Due to the lateness of the night, and my own health limitations, all i could manage was 140 mins of Ha on the 1st night, and 90 mins of RGB on the 2nd night. I made a boo-boo on night 2, and captured at ISO 800 instead of 200, which resulted in most of the stars being blown-out (i really, really hate how SGP is obsessed with ISO 800. why won't it let me set a default?!). The Ha data wasn't really of much use if i'm being honest. The OSC data picked up the Ha portions of M81 just fine, so it was just the jets in M82 where it only really added something, although i do think it was worth it in the end. Here's the capture details: 9x 600s RGB (2" IDAS-D1) 7 x 1200s Ha (2" 7nm Baader) 30 Flats, 50 Bias, dithered aggressively every frame Stacked in APP, Processed in PS (i used the Ha data for the Red channel in the RGB image). SW80ED, HEQ5-Pro. It's obviously light on exposure, i would ideally have liked at least 3 hrs of RGB, but beggars can't be choosers i suppose, so i'm calling this one done and moving on I haven't done much RGB or galaxy imaging, so C&C welcome as always guys.
  13. Hi Ragnar I probably should have been more clear. The example images i showed above, were not final, or even close to final. They were in fact taken from a stack that only had a single stretch applied. I did this deliberately as i wanted the grain in the transitional area to show up the most. The rest of the image was not really part of the discussion. It is obviously much too noisy, as it had no processing applied yet. If you look at the final image in the OP, you will see that the noise is much less than it is in these examples. Sorry i wasn't clearer! ps - These days i try my best to avoid doing any NR at all, or at the very least, as little as possible, but your image above with NR applied actually looks ok imho. :-)
  14. Here's a wee Photoshop technique i developed whilst processing this one. I consider it a form of Noise Reduction, although others may feel differently (i'll talk about that below). So, being a DSLR user, our images often contain unwanted grain (aka noise). Small, randomly placed dark pixels that give the appearance of holes in our images. We often use Noise Reduction techniques to minimise these, but they obviously can only do so much, and in addition, they are a destructive technique. They actually remove detail, sometimes from areas we don't want it to. So what if we could fill in those holes instead? Now, this is the part that some might have a problem with. For some people, they might (rightfully) see this as unethical, as it is technically adding in information that was not captured. For others (including myself ) who are just trying to reduce the noise in our images without getting caught up in the ethics of it all, it will be fine. So here goes... First, i zoom into the problem area. Usually, this will be an area where there is a transition between nebulosity and deep space. The little black dots are most pronounced in these areas. So, i start by making a New Layer, then using the 'Quick Selection Tool' in PS (i just keep the default of 2 pixels), then i start to click on the small black pixel areas. I select about 20 or so, just to make sure i've got a decent sample amount. Then, i use Select->Similar, and let Photoshop expand the selection. Depending on the image in question, you might need to re-do the Similar command a few times or more. Then i do Edit-Fill (Content Aware) and drop the Opacity to something in the 50% region. You could also choose to expand and smooth the selection by 1 pixel as well before doing the Fill. Finally, use a Layer Mask to hide everything, and carefully use the paint brush (low opacity) to just fix the few small problem areas, but being very careful not to venture into areas that don't need it. So it's a very area-selective command, as you can do proper damage to your image if you aren't careful. I've shown a quick before and after example below. As you can see, the impact is subtle, but does offer a nice improvement in smoothness. Hopefully someone else will find this useful.
  15. Lol, seriously?! Have you looked at both at 100% zoom? The original image was waaaaay over-processed. It just doesn't show up as much when viewed as a whole. You're right Ragnar, i should not have bothered trying to increase the image scale. The wide FoV would most likely have ended up looking better. I was just curious to see how a drizzled version would look so i couldn't help myself really. The biggest improvement is in the background and stars (view both at 100% to see). The newer version doesn't even have any noise reduction done on it at all (apart from Noel Carboni's 'Less Crunchy More Fuzzy', which is very subtle), whereas i really went to town in the original version. Finally some clear skies forecast for Saturday and Sunday night here. Now if i can just shake this darn man/bird/aussi flu thing i might actually be able to take advantage of them...