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Knight of Clear Skies

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Knight of Clear Skies last won the day on October 10 2017

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About Knight of Clear Skies

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  1. That's better thanks. Fairly sure that's the Milky Way running from top to bottom but I'm surprised it's not brighter, what aperture and ISO settings did you use please?
  2. Hi, can you unzip the file and post it as a jpeg please?
  3. Xkcd had a comic in a similar vein earlier this week. "The flags were probably vaporized on impact, because we launched it before we had finished figuring out how to land. That makes sense from an engineering standpoint, but also feels like a metaphor."
  4. ZWO sell a canon EF lens adaptor for about £35, here it is on FLO. I think there may also be one for Nikon lenses, and possibly another for mirrorless-fit lenses.
  5. Easiest and cheapest would be the Moon. I have an old 400mm M42 lens I got from a charity shop for £10 which takes perfectly good pictures. Probably the hardest target I went after is the 'other Cygnus Loop', an old supernova remnant catalogued as Sh2-92, Sh2-94, Sh2-96 and possibly some others. I got something after a ridiculous stretch but it didn't make for much of an image. Its was taken with Samyang 135mm f2 lens, 1600MM cool camera and Ha filter. One of the most challenging targets for amateurs are exoplanets, using the transit method of detection. A few hot Jupiters are within reach of small scopes but most require a great deal of aperture, so this might also qualify in the most expensive category.
  6. A few words of caution here. I haven't tried using a scope with my EQ3-2 but I have struggled when trying to use a heavy 200mm lens with it. It's not quite clear but the biggest weakness of the EQ3 may be the lightweight tripod, which may flex and ruin polar alignment. There is a thread here about imaging with this mount. I believe you'd need a coma corrector to image with the 150 pds, is this something you've budgeted for? Also, I don't think the image circle of this scope will cover your full-frame sensor, although cropping the image down is an option.
  7. Very nice Milky Way image. In terms of clouds we can certainly relate to that in the UK. Yes, it would make more sense to get a scope rather than a long lens for AP, I was wondering if you already had one. It depends what interests you and what your budget is, but a dobsonian for observing and Star-Adventurer for AP could be a good plan. What camera lenses do you currently own?
  8. Have you used the Star Adventurer at all? It's an equatorial mount which allows long exposures to be taken. A motorized alt-az mount will also track an object across the sky but will suffer from field rotation, they are far less suitable for astrophotography as exposures will be limited to about 30 seconds. Reading the specs for the Star Adventurer Mini it suggests it's suitable for lenses of up to 100mm focal length. This may not sound a great deal but there are some very large objects up there, for example this quick shot of the Rosette and Cone was taken with a 135mm lens. The scopes you mention are not suitable for deep sky imaging, both because of the alt-az mounts and in the case of the Celestron scopes too long a focal length. I believe the 130P does not reach focus with a camera, the imaging version is the 130 pds and is quite popular. However, it would probably require an HEQ5 mount and guide scope to get the best out of it. Unfortunately visual and imaging scopes have very different requirements. For visual work aperture (and therefore light-gathering ability) is the most important attribute, dobsonians offer the best value for money and are often recommended. For imaging I'd recommend giving the Star Adventurer a try with your existing lenses. Everything is more forgiving at short focal lengths and it would give you the opportunity to learn the image processing skills required for AP. Hope that's some help.
  9. ICE has worked well for me but I haven't made a true all-sky image. This is the nearest I've done, a Milky Way mosaic pretty much from horizon to horizon.
  10. The unusual framing works well, one of those shots that helps people relate what's up there with what can be seen by eye.
  11. I mostly look at FWHM and reject outliers. Stacking with a sigma clip seems to be good for rejecting rubbish, satellites, planes and even a bit of light cloud doesn't appear to damage the final image, as far as I can tell.
  12. The Moon's the best target for a scope like this. On the planets something like this Saturn might be achievable. Which was taken using a non-motorized mount by taking video with a webcam, as Saturn drifted across the field of view. The individual frames were then stacked in Registax (probably the best 10% or so) and the stacked image was sharped using wavelets.
  13. Hopefully something like Gradient Xterminator can clean up the background. Your M51 and background fuzzies are looking really good.
  14. Could certainly happen if the tube is reflecting a little. Please bear in mind, we're talking about one of the brightest stars in the sky.
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