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The-MathMog

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About The-MathMog

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    Star Forming

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    Male
  • Location
    Denmark
  1. The-MathMog

    M106 - Luminance Data

    Cloudless nights has been sparse the last 6 months since I got my new ZWO ASI 183MM-PRO. Probably just the prophecy holding true! But I just had two nights last week where I could get some hours in during the moonless part of the night. Unfortunately my rig had some issues on the first one, so only got like 40 minutes in, but then almost 4 hours the next night. Unfortunately I had to go to work the next day, so had to pull the plug early.. ______________________________ Gear: Skywatcher 150PDS Celestron Advanced VX Mount ZWO ASI 183MM-PRO Baader 2'' Neodymium Filter Explore Scientific Coma Corrector ToupTek Camera G-1200-KMB Mono Guider Orion Mini 50mm Guidescope Image: 4 hours 24 minutes of total luminance integration time 24 subs of 2 minutes gain 300 54 subs of 4 minutes gain 111 (unity?) Brightness/Offset 40 Calibrated with Darks and Flats Software: Sharpcap PHD 2 Photoshop CS2 Deep Sky Stacker Stellarium/Stellarium Scope Astrotortilla _________________________________ There were some rotational difference between the two sessions, so the image had to be cropped even further. Not happy with the star shapes either, but that is most likely due to me not being able to set the proper distance between the coma corrector and the camera. This is something I've fixed afterwards, so I am keen to test that out, as I should have nailed down the 55mm optimal distance. This week I got a ZWO EFW Mini with RGB filters too, so hopefully I get a few clear nights soon so I can add some delicious colors to it too. And just for fun, I've attached the stacked and processed 48 minute image I had after the first night. The background might be slightly clipped, but aesthetically that looks more pleasing to me than a more grey-ish background. I will probably do the processing from scratch when I get some rgb data on it. ______________________ 4 hour 24 minute image ________________________________________ 48 minute image Still a lot of detail in the short image, but when zooming in the noise is a lot worse, and I did really have to process the "S**T" out of it!
  2. The-MathMog

    Sharpcap File Naming Help

    So after acquiring a dedicated astronomy camera, the ZWO ASI183MM, and going from Backyard Nikon to Sharpcap, I've been looking into ways that I can get the program to sort the files for me with names. What I would preferably like, is for it to name the files themselves, as the target, and with the exposure length and gain, but I am not sure if and how that is possible. I've been noodling a bit with it, but it isn't as intuitive as I would like it to be. Right now it creates sub-folders: "Date/Target Name/Time of sequence start" and then the file names with the time of the exposure. It works well enough, as it also produces the text file with all info, from cooler target temperature, exposure, time you name it. But sometimes I've changed these parameters during a capture sequence, and then the text file only matches half of the actual files. Settings are changed under "File/Sharpcap Settings/File Names", if someone who isn't familiar with the program, but better at solving these issues, would have a look at it Maybe it is also just a case of me needing to change my habits, but I hope that someone has some ideas of how I could change the file naming. Thanks for your time, and if there is a better sub-forum for this, please redirect it! ///Mathias M.
  3. My guess is that you would have to use sidereal when training. But not having said controller myself, it is hard to say. I did find the manual for it online though and the procedure is as stated. 1. "Polar align the equatorial mount accurately, and then perform a star alignment". There is an answer for your first question. You need to star align. 2. "Choose a star close to the celestial equator, point the telescope towards it and start mount tracking. Center the star in the telescope's eyepiece" - this is where I am pretty sure you need to just use sidereal tracking. 3. "Access the menu - "Utility Function\PEC Training" and press ENTER. Press 1 or 2 to select the guiding speed. 4. "The screen will display the elapsed time. Use the left and right direction keys to control the mount and keep the star at the same spot in the FOV of the telescope until the SynScan HC stops displaying the time. The total time for this training process depends on mount models." and then to activate the PEC, you do indeed go into "Setup\Tracking\Pec+Sidereal". So, if you followed those steps, I can't see why it would not work.
  4. What constitutes it being a disaster? Is the images just completely black, or is it all out of focus? Starting out, it is indeed a good idea to focus on the moon, as the focus will be pretty much the same for everything else in the sky. But the moon is also very bright, so camera settings will need to be very different for other objects. Way longer exposure and higher gain. As mentioned too, your mount is an Alt-Az mount, and is decent enough for photographing planets and the moon, but it gets hard when trying to do Deep Sky Objects. It is possible though. I started out with an Alt-Az mount too, and found the longest exposures I could do was just short of 30 seconds. Enough for some of the brightest objects, and getting your head around astrophotography. But if astrophotography is your main interest, then you should eventually look at getting an Equatorial mount and even a telescope with a shorter focal length, but as you said, don't do that quite yet. Get comfortable with your current setup, and spend time learning and observing. Figuring out what your expectations are
  5. The-MathMog

    Hello From Malaysia

    Welcome to the forum! I've only been on here for almost a couple of years myself, and I can attest to, that there is a lot of help, experience and opinions to help you along the way! Clear skies!
  6. PEC seems to one of those areas that either works wonders for people, and for some it is a "waste of time" disaster. For me, it worked wonders, and actually improved my guiding a lot. But that was also because my mount did have a lot of periodic error, that the guiding now doesn't have to work as hard to fix. I did have to have a very good polar alignment, and do half a dousin training sessions and then average that data to get it to work how it should. But that also took my from loosing about 1/2 of my 2 minute subs, to be able to frequently pull of 4 minutes of unguided subs. So, I still wager he should at least give it a go. But yeah, if your mount doesn't have serious issues with PEC anyway, guiding would almost always be time better spend
  7. The-MathMog

    OTA decision

    I've had great experiences with Skywatcher, as I am currently using the 6 inch version "Skywatcher 150PDS" on a Celestron AVX Mount. What you need to figure out for yourself is, what focal length and targets are you looking at imaging? The TS optics is a 800mm (F4) focal length, while the Skywatcher is 1000mm (F5), so the TS has a larger field of view, but is also more demanding in terms of precise collimation. On the other end, the Skywatcher is a bit heavier because of the difference in length, so will be slightly more demanding for your mount, (but probably not by much, and your mount should easily handle it), while the length is also more susceptible to get affected by wind gusts. And tracking errors in general are of course amplified too. I do recommend the Skywatcher though. They are great quality scopes for the price. Haven't had hands on a TS though, but if they are in the same range, I would pick the scope that matches your desired focal length I'd search the web dry, for references and experiences on that scope.
  8. I've had my fare share of issues with PEC myself, mostly because of actual bugs and file format discrepancies between the mount and the software, but have now gotten it to work mostly! I do have a Celestron AVX mount, so I am not sure if I can be of any help, but I can at least try. On my AVX, I need to do a "Star-align" to get it to work, but that is because I can't really access the telescope without it. I can of course just do a "quick align", which just tells the scope it is in parking position. The reason really just is, that without the align, it isn't tracking in RA. How do you do your PEC-training? Do you manually guide on a star for the period when training, or do you auto-guide? And just to make sure, you do need to be tracking when training PEC. Is it only PEC that stops, or is it tracking in general, after 5 seconds? If the star literally starts to drift, it sounds like tracking too. On the note of "Choosing other items in the menu "Setup\Tracking" will turn off the PEC", you say that you DO choose another item, and that you think it is strange that it turns off PEC. But that is what it says it will when you do so. Or did I misinterpret that? My mount keeps on PEC even when exiting the PEC menu, but it sounds like this mount only have it activated when "PEC + Sidereal" is chosen. Quite a few questions, but clarifying those might help get to the culprit of your issue
  9. A new camera, means a lot of testing and seizing every possible clear night at your disposal. I used the first nights with my "ZWO ASI183MM-Pro" shooting hydrogen alpha, but now I wanted to test it on a broadband target. And what better test-subject than good old Bode's Galaxy/Nebula, for this image size! Upon processing the 3,6 hours worth of luminance data, I then realized that I missed the color in the image. So I went digging for the last images I shot of M81, which was with a Nikon D5200 sometime last year. I aligned the images and set the old image to color, and got this as my final result. I must say though, that I've probably gone through 20 different renditions of this one, as I kept trying to improve it, and finding a new favorite image But here is the last one I came up with, together with the separate luminance data and the 2017 M81 image Upon further investigation, I've noticed some dust-motes that has snuck into the image... Guess I need to figure out how to do flats.. They were never really necessary when shooting with the DSLR as noise would be too high anyway if you stretched it this much. Shot with: Skywatcher 150PDS ZWO ASI 183MM-Pro (Nikon D5200) Celestron Advanced VX Mount Explore Scientific Coma Corrector Baader Neodymium Filter 213 Minutes Luminance (4 Minute + 8 Minute Subs) 136 Minutes of Color DSLR (2 Minute Subs) Combined Image (5.816 hour data) Luminance Data (3.6 hour data - ZWO ASI 183MM-Pro) DSLR Image (2.26 hour data - Nikon D5200) Any advice or thought are accepted with open arms! One thing I know myself, is that I need to improve my mounts PEC data-set, to improve my guiding. It worked very well when I first did it, but that is like 1,5 years ago now.
  10. The-MathMog

    RGB Filter Size for CMOS Camera?

    Thank you, that was all I wanted to hear, as the mini EFW will be enough for my needs then! Both minimizing the amount of weight I add, and the amount of bucks spend! Just curious though. Says in your footer that you use 2'' filters, and the ASI1600mm. Is that sensor so much larger that they are needed, are they for another camera or simply to future-proof?
  11. So, a few months ago I did my first plunge in investing in a dedicated astronomy camera. I went with the "ZWO ASI 183MM", and it has been great exploring the capabilities of such cameras. I did buy a 3.5 nm HA Baader filter with it, though a 2 inch one, because the sized for this particular filter was limited. But now I am starting to consider actually getting the RGB filters for it. Mono images has their own charm, but I will forever love color images. So which size do you recon that I should go for, to be on the safe side of vignetting. I've tried using a calculator, and the recommended minimum filter size came to be 19.44 mm (keeping in mind that I don't know the exact distance the filter would be to the sensor). By this, regular 1.25 inch filters should be enough. But as it often goes to show, what seems to work in theory might not work in practice. So, what would YOU guys go for, if you had this setup? And is there anything else worth considering? Skywatcher 150PDS ZWO ASI 183MM (ZWO Mini EFW or Regular EFW, depending on filter size). Baader filters. Explore Scientific Coma Corrector Cheers from Denmark! ///Mathias M.
  12. A couple of days ago, I just received my new camera, the "ZWO ASI183MM Pro", so these days I am testing it extensively to get my grasp at this new way of imaging. I've been using a DSLR from the beginning after all. And most of the software I was using was only installed on my laptop. The problem right now is, that the laptop I normally use for astrophotography, had its motherboard burn out like a week ago, so right now I have to use my desktop pc, which incidentally means that I have to use my balcony = No Zenith + No Eastern, Northern or Western Horizon visible..... So the amount of targets are limited, while testing the HA filter. So, I did a few "video" (about 1fps at full resolution, as I currently only have a long enough USB 2 cable) shots of the moon, with the Baader 3.5nm filter in place too ( was too lazy for now to remove it), just to see what I would get, and the result looked surprisingly good. Can anyone comment on what benefits and downsides one would get shooting the moon through that filter? Is it simply "wasting good light"? Nevertheless here is the final stacked image. About 72 stacked frames. Skywatcher 150-PDS Celestron AVX Mount ZWO ASI183MM Pro Baader 3.5nm HA filter. Back to trying to shoot the HA nebulaes.. The Eagle Nebula has yielded some good results so far, considering that it is a bit more challenging getting a proper polar align as of right now, as I am not too experienced with drift aligning.
  13. The-MathMog

    The-MathMog's Images

    Just some of my images in general.
  14. The-MathMog

    3 hours of wasted Andromeda :(

    Indeed looks like a combination of, focus, tilt/collimation and of course a lack of coma corrector But I've had decent results in the past from sub-optimal subs. So go for it and see what it brings
  15. The-MathMog

    Solar Observing and Imaging

    Of course I value my eyes a thousandfold over my equipment, hence the "joking" part! And that is why I am here, and on several other sites asking for advice, instead of just plunging into it, as I know how dangerous doing it the wrong way can be. Is the 150 pds, not suitable, or simply not recommended for the practice? As I am hesitant of wanting to cash out for a new scope, to only observe the sun. I know that I would not be spending nearly as much time on this, as deep-sky astrophotography. Thanks for the input!
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