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Knight of Clear Skies

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Everything posted by Knight of Clear Skies

  1. Yes, the Samyang can pick up a fair bit of IFN from a dark site without too much difficulty. This is about 3 hours of data with a Canon 6d, using 2 minute unguided subs. From the edge of Bodmin Moor, which is typically around SQM 21.2-21.7.
  2. Stu is right that surface brightness doesn't change with distance. However, some reflection and emission nebulae might appear brighter from the right vantage point, with less obscuring dust in the way. Probably the most impressive Messier object to see up close with the naked eye would be a dense globular cluster. (Or, if this qualifies, the accretion disc and jet of M87.)
  3. I also made a timelapse video of last night's lunar halo.
  4. Nice bright lunar halo from last night. This is a stack of 23 four-second exposures with the Samyang 14m f2.8 and Canon 6d, cropped to widescreen format.
  5. Just to expand my thoughts on the first posted image, I think the composition and the stars look good. The sky image is very bright and I think it would benefit from being toned down. The Milky Way also looks unnaturally smoothed, possibly the result of over-heavy noise reduction. I think a little noise grain would look better and more natural. With a little tweaking I think it could be a very good image indeed.
  6. Quick Lyrid from last night, at 1:23AM. I just propped the camera up in a window and let it run until the battery ran down. (I've now ordered myself an external power supply so I can leave it running all night if I want to.) Canon 6d and Samyang 14mm f2.8.
  7. It's a nice image but I think a more subtle version would work better.
  8. The Pimpleless Wizard? Sounds like it could be a pub. The starless rendition works well here to give it more of a sense of depth and the colour palette works well.
  9. I'm still shooting some tiny galaxies at the moment. Partly due to some technical issues with the telescopic setup, but mostly because it is easy and enjoyable. Hardly a showcase image but there is plenty to find in there. North is to the left, the Leo triplet is at the bottom while the M96 group is at the top. Despite the enormous distance between them they might all be gravitationally bound into a single group. The M96 group is surrounded by an enormous ring of hydrogen, the result of a galactic collision. There is UV emission coming from it, which probably means dwarf galaxies are forming there. This was just 34 minutes with the Canon 6d and Samyang 135mm f2, as the clouds rolled in. Barely a hint of the Hamburger tidal tail if I stretch far too aggressively, it's faint. The two brightest stars are Zosma & Chertan. I found a faint smudge I thought might be a low surface brightness galaxy, turned out to be the Leo II dwarf galaxy, a satellite of the Milky Way. Also in frame are a few Abell galaxy clusters (1177 being the brightest), a ton of background galaxies and Vesta. Here's a closer view of Leo II from SDSS. And here's Abell 1177 from SDSS, its brightest galaxy is NGC 3551. I can't find any amateur images of the cluster in case anyone would like to have a go. I've captured a lot more data of the Virgo cluster, hopefully I'll get around to processing it soon.
  10. Very nice, and thanks for the tips on annotation. I may have to consider PixInsight at some point.
  11. Good demonstration that there are many ways making astronomical observations, it's certainly not just about the showpiece images.
  12. Very good. Do you use Lightroom to reduce vignetting and distortion from the lens?
  13. Great result. More councils are getting clued up on this sort of thing.
  14. Thanks, I did something similar for the view towards the galactic centre if you're interested.
  15. Thanks, that's what I suspected, but DSS is still complaining. It says 'gain doesn't match' but I'm not sure if it's the gain or offset setting it doesn't like.
  16. I believe short subs are the key, to avoid blowing out the core. I also think some people have had success using an Ha filter.
  17. I wonder if anyone can help me please. DSS is complaining that the gain setting for my flats and dark bias aren't matching with the lights I took in APT. How do I access the gain and offset settings in Sharpcap please? There doesn't seem to be a control for 'offset', there is 'brightness' but I'm not sure if that's the same thing.
  18. Good find, not much showing here on the SFD dust map here (select from the imagery dropdown at bottom-left).
  19. A panoramic image from last night covering nearly 180 degrees of the outer Milky Way. 6D and Samyang 14mm f2.8, stitched together in Microsoft ICE. Each pane is a stack of five 20 second exposures. Also made an annotated version showing the approximate field of view in Stellarium and the constellation sectors on a Milky Way map.
  20. For getting started with imaging, especially on a budget, I'd tend to recommend the Samyang 135mm f2 lens over a scope. Enough focal length to pick up detail on a good number of targets, very fast at f2 and much more forgiving of the mount.
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