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Everything posted by rob_r

  1. Hi and welcome from over the river in Penwortham.
  2. Hi, a string of clear nights from the latter half of last week was a welcome sight and the favourable conditions seem set to continue for the next couple of days at least. Coupled with a favourable libration of the recent full Moon, the western/southwestern limb was showing a little more of the farside particularly the massive Mare Orientale. So, below are a few images of Mare Orientale (Eastern Sea) be it incredibly foreshortened, Bailly (along with Schickard & Schiller) and Oceanus Procellarum (Ocean of Storms). All taken with a SW SkyMax 127, ZWO ASI224MC plus extender tube (perhaps a l
  3. That does seem to happen quite often. That said, there is a favourable libration for Mare Orientale so I'll be pointing my scope at that. Glorious clear skies here at the moment!
  4. Replacing the USB flat cable was one of the first things I did with my ASI224MC, mostly due to having a Mac Pro with the smaller USB-C ports only. I tried using the supplied flat cable via a USB2 to USB-C hub first time round and the camera kept disconnecting despite having no issues with any other external device using the hub. Getting the USB-C cable simply cut out the middle man and could connect the camera directly into the Mac Pro, plus I guess there would be an speed increase of data transfer. No issues since. I am not sure what was the fault with the disconnecting, whether it was the hu
  5. I just got myself this camera too so I will also try these settings in future and I have tried the same advice from The London Astronomer too. I wonder about filters as I am considering getting a LRGB set for the gas giants later in the year as surely these would affect exposures timings and settings even further?
  6. Thanks guys. It was the featured highlight for the Moon this month for the 24th and 25th in the BBC Sky at Night magazine and proved a good target practice for me using the new planetary camera.
  7. A couple of close ups of Mare Humorum and the Gassendi crater. These were the first from my new ASI224MC. The first of Mare Humorum with the camera attached to my SW Mak 127 with an extender tube mounted on a EQ5. The close up of the crater was the same again, only with a Celestron 2x barlow added to the train. Considering getting a better quality barlow, I thought about a 5x but after reading some informative threads here that would be pointless. So a better quality 2x or 2.5x might be a future purchase and open to recommendations on this. Each are the result of the best 30% frames of
  8. I'm over the river in Penwortham.
  9. Here is my small 127 Mak on a EQ5 mount.
  10. Thanks for the pointers, @Adreneline. I think I left 3x drizzle checked by mistake which initially led to me wondering why my Mac was running low on RAM. I'm still finding my way around DSS. Siril was giving me some weird patterns in the final stacks I tried that. In any case, I still have the RAWs so I reprocessed it last night and this led to a much cleaner image and did a little better with the core. I'm not guiding yet and it is something I'm working towards but I want to get the tracking pinned down first as the mount should be capable of stable exposures longer than half a minute. Thanks
  11. My latest effort taken over two nights, Christmas Eve and New Years Day. Took 70x25s (24/12/2020) and 70x10s (01/01/2021) exposures with a Canon 600D (plus 20 darks and 20 bias for each stack, ISO800) in an effort not to blow out the core by stacking and merging the different exposures in Photoshop. Safe to say, I failed in that respect. With a focal length of 1500mm, getting most of the main nebula structure in frame was always going to be near impossible. Still, a significant improvement on my first shot of this target two years ago which is somewhere on this forum perhaps. I'm not sure
  12. The moon from Christmas Eve at about 76% full, a waxing gibbous. 40x exposures at 1/200 seconds at ISO800. Taken with a Canon 600D and SkyMax 127mm near Preston, Lancs UK. A stack of 40 frames stacked in AS!3. Then sharpened, colour balanced and reduced noise in Photoshop v21. A first attempt at saturating the image to show the mineral compositions of various regions. Duplicated the layer and set blending mode to luminosity, increased saturation on the lower layer than flattened the image. Didn't want to oversaturate but perhaps could have gone for a little more saturation.
  13. Hi, last weekend offered up a clear night so starting imaging M33. Still got quite a few more frames to collect at the moment and very much a work in progress. So far, this is at 70x 30s lights, 20x darks and 20x bias all with an unmodded Canon 600D at ISO800 which seems to be the sweet spot setting for ISO for this camera. Nothing else in between the camera and my 127mm Mak. This is first time using a Bahtinov mask and gained focus on nearby Mars before switching upwards towards Triangulum. All stacked in DSS but had to drop the star detection threshold quite low as the light frames only ha
  14. An early Christmas present to myself, an ZWO ASI224MC and a Bahtinov mask. Seemed to take an age for the camera to be back in stock, been waiting for a couple of months at least. Really looking forward to using these although I know it is guaranteed to be cloudy now for the foreseeable.
  15. Absolutely, the seemingly persistent cloud cover for me. Then when it is a clear(ish) night, it's either a full moon or a work day the morning after.
  16. An unexpected short session on Sunday evening with a brief respite in cloud cover. I liked the dramatic scene of the Copernicus crater shrouded by the terminus so I took a few movies of it. The amount of detail was unexpected and quite a pleasing result for me. Seeing conditions appeared to be good with some high thin rolling clouds. The moon was approximately 69% illuminated, a waxing gibbous. The below image was acquired from 5 movies approximately 100 seconds long, shot at 25FPS with the DLSR's built in digital zoom at about 3x. The scope was the SkyMax 127 SCT and the DSLR is a Canon
  17. Thanks for the encouragement, a bahtinov mask is on the shopping list. I tend to focus using the live view on the camera but zoomed in to ensure I get as close as I can. The camera shoots at a 24 FPS rate, which is slow compared to dedicated planetary cameras. I have been trying to get my head around WinJUPOS for de-rotation but I'm finding it a bit of minefield. I can do all the alignment stuff but when it comes to the final processing step I get a bit lost as there is only one image loaded in. I still have the stacked frames so I will keep playing with WinJUPOS.
  18. Hello! I finally swung my scope on Mars a couple of weeks ago (26th Sept) but given the amount of data I captured, I can't help but feel a bit disappointed with the overall final result. All taken with a SkyMax 127 SCT and a Canon 600D coupled with a 2x barlow. I took about a dozen 90-100 second videos, took the best 10% and sharpened them up in Registax. The final stack was via Siril. There is some surface detail there but it is not well defined at all. I realise that despite Mars being close, it is still a fairly small target compared to the likes of Saturn and Jupiter. The imaging calculato
  19. I can only see it with 'averted vision' through my 127 mak with a 25mm EP. I have similar houses, lights and skies to yours at Bortle 6.
  20. A latest effort of Saturn with a Mak 127 and a Canon 600D (unmodded) on a EQ5 mount plus a 2x barlow. Taken on 20th September between 21:10 and 21:38. 14x 120s (approx) AVI videos at ISO800. Had to manually press start/stop on the camera. Converted all the AVI videos files into SER files via Siril. Stacked all the resulting frames in AutoStekkert, 15% of the best frames. Brightened x4 to auto map alignment points. Noise Robust set to 7 (Low SNR) as the videos were quite noisy. A little wavelet sharpening and denoise in Registax 6 for all 14 stacked images, auto stretched on openin
  21. I have one, it was on the AZ GTI but I have since upgraded to an EQ5 now. The scope certainly needs a dew shield. As for the scope itself, it's light (3kg) and compact so it is quite portable. It is best suited for lunar and planetary viewing with it's long focal length although it can pick out DSOs at around 8 to 9 magnitude and that is under a Bortle 6 sky depending on the conditions. The AZ mount is decent but I prefer a handset controller, my AZ mount is has the WiFi connection to my mobile and is controlled from that. Another plus, it can be easily powered from a small power tank so it's
  22. Another clear night last night although I was put off by the poor seeing forecast, however it didn't actually seem all that bad to me. I setup early at around 8.30pm and doubly made sure I got the alignment right this time round. I seemed to have done a better job this time round with the desired object falling into the field of view but off centre. In any case, I lived with that. Jupiter was already on the march towards the trees and with a quick peek before the giant disappeared altogether, I spotted 3 of the Galilean moons. Io must have been in transit. I was using a low powered EP, st
  23. I think I made the same mistake last night too. I got my first sight of Mars too and spotted a bright dot some way off Mars, I thought it could be one of the moon's but seemed too bright. I could see it by averting my eye on to the planet through my 127 Mak and it was on completely the wrong axis anyway as I was using a diagonal.
  24. Hi. I have seen M57 and photographed with a Canon 600D it under Bortle 6 skies with a Skywatcher 127 with a 25mm EP. It is extremely faint and small, like a hazy high cloud. It is best when I use 'averted vision' to see it. It is surprisingly bright when I do this, almost like a vibrant blue. Hope you find it, it is a worthy target. It is the within the area marked with the blue square.
  25. Jupiter from the evening of 9th September 2020, just outside Preston. Aligned and stacked 17% of the best frames from a 7 minute movie with AS!3 then Wavelets applied in Registax. Taken with SW SkyMax 127mm and Canon 600D with digital zoom on a SW EQ5 mount. This is my first time using Registax after stacking in AS!3 then further and final level adjustments made in Photoshop. It is a significant improvement on my previous attempts of this target, only the sharpness of the resulting image is proving elusive. The movie was extremely noisy perhaps due in part to atmospheric conditions and th
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