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About philhilo

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    Star Forming

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    West Midlands, UK

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  1. A bit late to the party but I would totally say don't worry about the light pollution! I live in a bortle 8, surrounded by an international airport, a major car manufacturing plant and a city of 1 million people and I produce images that blow my mind. I image for long periods, 8-12 hours, mostly image in narrowband which excludes bulk of the light pollution and most importantly have organised my kit so it requires the least effort possible to get imaging - that is the biggest barrier. Also check out Cuiv the Lazy Geek on Youtube, he images from a tower block in central Tokyo and wins awards (a
  2. You have imaged the core of the Andromeda galaxy - 2.5million light years away, awesome! There really isn't much more detail to be had out of the core, especially in only a few minutes of subs (at my f4.5 and light pollution of bortle 8+ I image most targets for 8-12 hours!). That's just about what I got out of my kit to start, similar long focal length. I moved to different things because the target just wasn't suitable for my focal length. I bought a 388mm fl refractor for imaging Andromeda (another journey of pain and suffering, lol). Your goto is working, that's a good start. I would try
  3. 2 months without a decent image - dont stress! As my son said, 'why do you do such hard things Dad?' Astrophotography is a hard game, period. You have picked an epically hard set up to start but you will get great images. I started with, and still use a telescope imaging at 911mm, without any GOTO, so manual finding targets, and no tracking. Now 3 years later, it is all fully automated, I decide what I want to image, check focus, then press a button and go to bed, get up in the morning with a neatly parked telescope and hard drive full of data, lovely. But every step took months of hair pullin
  4. Thanks everyone for the feedback on this, life all got a bit hectic and I had to step away for a while. My mount has gone off for a tune and belt mod so hopefully it will come back much improved (the guiding went right off in April, don't know why, but the summer hiatus seemed like a good moment for modding etc). I may well get an EQ6R Pro if they ever arrive in the country again!
  5. Was a great talk, confirmed a lot of things I thought about ST. Thanks to Ivo for getting up in the wee small hours and all the folks who organised it. Cheers.
  6. I do dither, but I started to get this tartan pattern appear after stacking that would be visible in the stretched image. Consultation with the learned folks of Stargazer Lounge showed i had a steady rotation in my images. When DSS stacked these the pattern appeared, bilinear interpolation I think. It was suggested I try different stackers and sure enough the pattern vanished. Thus I was trying to understand why I wasn't getting a consistent pa and needed to get one despite the decent guiding. Long story but fixing problems in astrophoto usually is!
  7. The guiding isn't the issue, its the field rotation thats a pain! First up I have to crop more than I would like around the edges, and secondly DSS produces tartan images if you feed it steadily rotating data. This means buying something expensive like APP or learning something new like ASTAP. However better guiding is never a bad thing, especially with a heavily laden mount.
  8. OK it looks like I need to check the level as a starter. The rig isn't on a pier but it has been in position for at least 6 months (maybe 12) sat on gravel. Cheaper than a new saddle and dovetail! I got the Polemaster so can double check and it's kit that can be moved on if I needs be (Sharpcap does a good job for £10 a year and lots of other stuff so keen to keep it). Thank you folks.
  9. I have a SW 200PDS newt on an HEQ5 Pro. The guiding is using the SW9x50 finder. I polar align using Sharpcap (rotate through 90 degrees) and can get it down to under 10 arcseconds. Alas when I swing the rig through 90 degrees the other way it tends to be a minute or more out. Back again to the centre and it not as accurate, and back the original way and it is again not as accurate as when it started. This suggests that the mount isnt properly aligned and I get rotation in my images which again suggests a lack of alignment. The OTA feels solid on the mount and there is no slack in the moun
  10. Evening all, Looks like a clear moonless night tonight (fingers crossed). Using a SW200PDS with an ASI1600MM under bortle 8 skies I have around 12 good hours of usable 30 second subs across LRGB on M81 (prob another 8 hours of unusable 120 and 240second subs). With that combo I can fit both M81 and M82 in (I didn't initially as M81 was the secondary object for the night and the rotation for the nebula was wrong for M81/2). Should I: Shoot another 12 hours of centered M82 and make a mosaic (not done this before but willing to learn). Shoot M81/2 in one frame and hope the g
  11. Hi Ivo, Apologies for the delay in responding (families, work, life etc) and a big thank you for responding, you don't get that with Photoshop! I do plan on getting a dataset over to you with my ideas, probably through the ST contact form rather than leave this hanging whilst I try to find the time to get something sorted. Cheers.
  12. Hi Astrobena, Noticed you had no replies on this one, not sure why, however I think it would help if you included full details of the imaging set up from telescope to camera, settings for exposures, times, how many were stacked, ISO/gain, offset. It looks as if you are using DSS and PS? What were the stacking settings? What is the final outcome and problem? That will give people a better chance of understanding what is causing the issue. Does this issue occur in single subs, the stack, or just the end product? Currently its like saying my car won't go, why not? Need a little more detail.
  13. Both clips and drawtube are messing with the stars. Clips is a piece of cardboard painted black circle cut out, glued onto clips - £1 for the cereal box for the cardboard. I have seen folks saw the end off the drawtube (scary), or replace focuser, £300, expensive.
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