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About BrendanC

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    Proto Star

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    Buckinghamshire, UK

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  1. Hi all, I recently signed up for a free Astrobin account. I have some photos uploaded, not reached the free limit of ten yet. It's been sort of nice to get people liking my images, but apart from that, I can't really see much benefit to using it. Also there are other sites such as Telescopius that host images for free, although the community doesn't seem quite as large. However, I'm always on the lookout for interesting new things to explore. So, I'm just wondering, on an idle Sunday, whether there are huge benefits to using it that I've overlooked? Anyone use it and really like it?
  2. Do you mind if I recommend two things for backup? I'd consider that as important as the spec! I've been using OneDrive's 1TB plan for the past year and it's invaluable. It allows me to work on images across machines, and it's really great knowing that it's working in the background to back everything up. However, given the golden rule of three of backups - ie you should have three copies, in three different formats - I also use a very neat little utility called Bvckup, which you have to pay for, but that also works in the background to copy things to a local drive: see https://bvckup
  3. Super-quick question: what are the Description.txt files that accompany master files in Deep Sky Stacker? More importantly, do I need to keep them? The reason I ask is that I have all my individual dark files still stored, and I really don't need them: I just need to keep the master files. However, I don't know whether I also need to keep the master Description.txt files too. From what I gather on looking at them, they're just descriptions of the individual dark files that are used to make them. So, I probably don't need to keep them. However, before I do this, can anyone confir
  4. Just took another look and planned the mosaic in Telescopius. How would this look? Does it include all the essential elements, do you think?
  5. Hi all, So, given we have a few clear nights coming up but they're going to be full moons or near enough, I've decided this is the ideal time to embark on a project I've wanted to do for a while: a matrix of the Hyades. However, I'm having difficulty establishing exactly what such a shot should include. I'd ideally like it to include Aldebaran, even though that's not officially part of the cluster. However, every photo I look at seems to include different extents of the sky. Does anyone know: what should a shot of the Hyades include? And if you could also provide a photo that wo
  6. Thank you. Pretty much my feelings too. I might stick with clusters, but just give M51 a quick try at low exposures and see if it's worth pursuing.
  7. Hi all, Given a rare full clear night, obviously it's going to be a full moon! I'm considering clusters for photography, but also M51. If I do M51, would anyone happen to have any recommendations regarding exposure times at ISO800 (which I shoot everything at)? This will be with a 130PDS, a modded EOS1000D, on an NEQ6, guided, under Bortle 4 skies. I mean, I'll be checking the histogram and possibly taking varied exposure times - I expect 120s, 180s and 240s - but if anyone has any recommendations that would be great. Thanks, Brendan
  8. Sure, here you go: • 16.25 hours of integration time, made up of 29x120s, 152x180s and 115x240s - simply because I've just started guiding and am increasing exposure times each session to see what my kit can do, and what works given my skies • Bortle 4 sky, moon average 49% phase • Calibration: 25 flats, 25 dark flats, 50 darks • Hardware: Sky-Watcher 130PDS scope (F5), Sky-Watcher NEQ6 mount, Canon EOS1000D astro-modded camera with Sky-Watcher 0.9x coma corrector, T7C guidescope (ASI120MC clone), Angel Eyes 50mm guidescope • Software: polar alignment with SharpCap Pro, guiding with
  9. Just thought I'd pop up again and say I didn't give up.
  10. Thanks! So, you think the DSLR approach will work better than the T7C approach? I agree a mono camera with an IR pass filter would work well, but then, as the saying goes, if I had eggs, and I had ham, I could have ham and eggs!
  11. Hi all, I've done a fair amount of DSO work, but not much lunar. I'm going to change that tomorrow night hopefully, with some experiments to see what works best with my kit. I have a 130PDS on an NEQ6 mount, and two cameras: a modded Canon EOS1000D DSLR, and a T7C which is essentially identical to the ZWO ASI120MC, which I usually use for guiding but doubles as a solar system camera. I also have a 3x Barlow and a 5x Barlow. My capture software is usually APT, but I also have Sharpcap Pro which I usually use for polar alignment, but I've also used it for solar system video captur
  12. Thanks. The middle is fine, it's mainly the stuff for example top right of the shot, all that nice nebula structure that just seems to fall flat to me, when other shots with similar equipment handle it better.
  13. A month ago, I got some subs of the Rosette Nebula. There was a ton of light pollution from the Moon, which really bleached out the surrounding nebulosity, although the core was ok. Over the past week I've had another go at this, in perfect conditions - but still, I feel this is lacking something. When I look at other versions on Astrobin, using the same camera (examples here), they seem to capture more of the outlying areas which I thought my camera would do well, being Ha modded. So, does anyone have any recommendations here? Is there a particular module in StarTools that might help (I've ha
  14. Right, so, I've been using this method recently and one thing I'm noticing is that it's a right old pain in the Bottom. It works, but it's hard work. The only files common to all the sessions are the dark flats - in fact, that's just one file, because it's the master. Everything else - flats, darks and lights - have to be very carefully arranged and copied according to temperature and, in the case of darks, exposure time. It takes ages and creates a lot of duplication which is always to be avoided for many, many reasons. For example, I'm trying to bring together three night
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