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bobro

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About bobro

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  1. I don't
  2. Nice capture! Although it's quite a blue target, I wonder if it's perhaps a little too blue? I'm interested in how people adjust colour balance - I usually just do it in DSS as I can't seem to successfully do it in GIMP alone.
  3. No guiding with the new camera and DIY scope yet?
  4. Until recently I used EOS Utility, but moved to APT (19 Euro) to allow dithering. In my limited experience I didn't have any problems with EOS Utility. A thought : enabling in-camera noise reduction results in an exposure doubling effect - could this be the problem? Bob
  5. It looks very similar to the GSO CC http://agenaastro.com/gso-2-coma-corrector.html Note the page on this corrector states : Additional spacers will be required (not included) between the corrector and your camera's T ring depending on the camera's CCD chip location to ensure that your CCD plane is set to the correct back-focus distance from the corrector.
  6. One year ago I purchased my scope with RA motor for the grand sum of £150, with the intention of developing an interest and having fun with astrophotography - but with an economy DIY approach. Now, one year later, it's been a great learning journey, with still much fun to have and I can't wait for darker skies once again towards the end of the year. For interest I decided to add up roughly how much I have spent on equipment over the year - it came to about £800. More than I expected, but no complaints as I have tried a bit of visual, a little video of the Moon and Jupiter, but mainly been occupied with guided DSO imaging using a DSLR. This brought me to a question - just how much have others spent on this absorbing hobby? (If the figure is embarrassing we won't tell, honest!)
  7. Kappa Sigma Clipping stacking in DSS can take care of planes, satellites, meteorites etc - see my post of April 27th on page : https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/279039-the-eq3-dso-challenge/?page=13
  8. If you mean the focuser wobbles from side to side - I had the same problem and fixed it by putting self-adhesive ptfe strips on the inside of the outer focus tube. Focusing is now smooth but controlled and the camera weight doesn't make the inner tube move from side-side. The strips can be purchased from ebay for a few pounds and built up on top of each other to provide the required degree of control. HTH
  9. Well, my 'laptop' is my only computer. It runs Windows 10 though it is a netbook with only 32GB of permanent memory - that means no hard disc or fan, runs cool and the battery life in normal use of 10 hours. When imaging it powers an external USB hub (only 2 USB ports but need 3), Arduino scope guiding interface, guide camera and DEC guiding motor. Software running is PHD2, APT for image capture, Cartes du Ciel and Chrome. DSS and GIMP are used for image processing. It may not be the fastest laptop but easily handles image capture and post processing. Images are captured to a micro SD card. It cost £120 from Argos on ebay. Similar netbooks are available from Argos on ebay - search for 'Acer atom'. I love it, especially as it makes my imaging setup very easy to get going with only 3 batteries : the laptop, camera and a PP3 battery in the RA motor - no mains or external power packs with heavy batteries.
  10. Excuse me asking, but isn't a CCD camera very light sensitive and this isn't required for bright Jupiter? Perhaps you have another use planned for the camera?
  11. Looks like you have too many variables going around - so best to simplify things. here are some suggestions: 1) Don't mix visual and AP - keep them separate as no telescope will be ideal for both. 2) For visual you have a Dob - keep it. It won't be worth much if you sell it and you are familiar with it. 3) For AP decide between Moon, planets and DSOs. Again, a single scope/method won't do all. 3a) For Moon - try a webcam/guidecam on the Dob. A great entry into AP and the guidecam can be used for telescope guiding at a later date if required. Otherwise ignore the Moon unless you have a particular interest. 3b) For planets - there aren't a lot of planets in the sky for AP. A scope with a long focal length is required. I suggest to ignore this option unless it is a particular interest. 3c) For DSOs - there are many interesting DSOs. DSO imaging requires long exposures, a solid mount and guiding for the best results. The equipment you have suggested seems to be from a reasonable budget, so here goes - Purchase an EQ5 (or perhaps HEQ5) mount. Look at the weight - you mentioned portability as a consideration. For imaging a SynScan version is required. For DSO imaging (especially as a beginner) it is good to have a scope with a short focal length to make guiding easier. A SkyWatcher 130PDS is an excellent scope to start imaging with and you will learn a lot. Yes a coma corrector will help but can be used with future scopes. Look at the great images on this forum others have made with the 130PDS. Once you are familiar with the mount/scope and have made some short exposure images, purchase a guide camera/scope and start guiding for longer exposures and capture of many more DSOs. 4) Having made your first forays into imaging, you may find your interests change. In that case you have a good stable mount and can very easily sell the 130PDS if you wish to purchase a different scope for e.g. planetary work. Just suggestions - hope you find something useful there.
  12. I understand others have implemented autoguiding without goto using stepper motors on the mount, normally meaning at least an EQ3 mount is used. What makes my setup unusual is the use of DC motors, which require much less power than stepper motors, and an EQ2 mount. My current setup only has 3 batteries : laptop, RA motor (PP3) and camera. The DEC motor is powered by the laptop. The laptop is an eeebook with 10 hours battery life in normal use. That means the guiding setup doesn't need mains power or a separate battery pack and so setup is very quick and portable. Of course an EQ2 doesn't have the inherent stability of an EQ3/5 and DC motors don't have the inherent accuracy of stepper motors, so guiding accuracy isn't as good as with a regular setup. Nevertheless, decent images can be made. Entry cost is low : the scope complete with first RA motor cost £150 from Currys. I've just completed testing a low cost (£37) AR0130 sensor based guide camera. This sensor is used on low end commercial guide cameras, so has good sensitivity. It works with the polar alignment feature of SharpCap, so as well as using it as a guide camera, you get PoleMaster functionality for free! You can get an idea of the mount stability when accurately polar aligned but not guided in the post of 9th May 2017 in this thread, though I wouldn't suggest using it unguided for imaging due to periodic errors : https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/292376-low-cost-ar0130-guide-camera/ All of this is only for the DIY enthusiast - a (very bright) 16 year old in Florida has implemented the Raspberry PI version of this guiding setup successfully.
  13. Conclusions on the AR0130 camera after testing with PHD2 and SharpCap : AR0130 camera : to get manual exposure to adjust correctly it seems to be necessary to set the exposure to auto first before changing back to manual. PHD2 : works well with the camera. Manual exposure settings of -1 (approx 500msec) and -2 (approx 250msec) seem best, with PHD2 'exposure' (actually stacking of webcam images) set to 500msec or 1 sec. Easy to find a guide star - normally no need to move the guide scope. SharpCap : plenty of stars visible with the camera set to manual exposure (set the camera to Auto first). The excellent polar alignment feature of SharpCap quickly detects stars and allows polar alignment to be accurately made. The attached image, following polar alignment with SharpCap, is 120 sec unguided (must have been lucky to have set the RA motor speed accurately as this is just a simple DC motor).
  14. What about the Meade 130 EQ at $160 from ebay? It's the one I use and the tripod reasonably stable.
  15. Shhhh.....don't tell Orion!