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Found 148 results

  1. Hi, I wan't to tell you about a relatively new open source imaging suite that I have been using for around 7-8 months now. Night time imaging n' astronomy or in short NINA! The new website is really quite informative, so check it out here: https://nighttime-imaging.eu/ As a software developer and IT professional I was blown away by this application these guys were creating, when I first stumbled upon it last year. It is a really feature rich application as the very long feature list below will show, and it is absolutely free! I was immediately drawn to the very simple but still quite information rich UI that was presented to me when I tried it the first time. Isbeorn (the developer), Dark Archon (massive contributor) and Quickload (big contributor) have really created something impressive here, and it is constantly being improved upon. It is quite normal to see these guys working on the next cool feature in the middle of the night As it is a "hobby project" and Open Source, and these guys don't have every model of every camera available - sometimes there can be glitches with new equipment, but it is usually sorted out in quick fashion. But this is where we "mere mortals" can help improve this amazing piece of software, by using it and providing feedback and logs (in case of errrors) via. Discord or the Issue tracker on bitbucket. In return for this you get a very comprehensive piece of astro imaging software for absolutely nothing! If anyone needs any help in settings this up, don't hesitate to write in this thread and I will try to help, or jump on Discord and join the "support" channel. I recommend taking the latest beta version, pretty much always, as it has the latest fixes and is generally stable. List of main features as grabbed from the webpage and personal experience (I surely missed some): Equipment control ASCOM Cameras Mounts Filter wheels Focusers Rotators Native camera drivers for Atik ZWO QHYCCD Altair Astro cameras Canon Nikon Touptek Can run multiple camera's and supports syncronized dithering (early version, but tested in the field!) Image analysis Image statistics Auto stretch Full image star detection with HFR calculation (used for autofocus as well) Exposure time recommendation Sequencing Multitarget sequence lists (image multiple targets automatically) Automatic mosaic capture as defined in framing assistant Light, Bias, Dark, DarkFlat, Flat frames of various exposure lengths and gain/iso Automatic filter change Autofocus using full image HFR calculations over time number of exposures Temperature change Automatic centering and rotation of targets using platesolving Save as raw (dslr), fits, xisf, etc. Customizeable filename pattern Automatic meridian flip Can automatically flip and recenter target after flip has been completed Sky atlas Sky atlas with more than 10.000 objects. Filtering on type, magnitude, size, altitude and more Altitude chars showing showing altitude over time for your location Framing assistant Can pull data from various skyserveys, to make framing and planning easier You can see a preview of your fov based on camera and scope details Mosaic planning mode Shows your mosaic tilesin the framing wizard Set desired overlap percentage Offline skymap shows gridlines and all sky atlas DSO's, constellations and coordinates ("Cartes du Ciel'ish") Sleek and customizable UI Imaging tab can be customized to show all the information you could possibly want to see image (duh! ;)) Statistics HFR history PHD2 graph and statistics Mount information Camera information Filter wheel information Platesolve information Weather data and more.. Quick switch between light and dark scheme Customizable colorschemes Flats wizard Set a desired ADU and tolerance for flats Simple mode or multimode where flats are captured for each filter Set minimum and maximum exposure time Guide to help you get the desired flats Can automatically capture matching darkflats Other cool features PHD2 integration with Dithering Weather data from OpenWeatherMap API List of bright focus stars for use with Bahtinov mask, clik and slew to it Polar alignment tools Configuration profiles, so different setups can be used A word about open source: The project is open source, this means that all source code is readily available from bitbucket, and anyone is free to contribute code. The developer is Isbeorn (Stefan) and as the repository manager he decides when and if a submission (pull request) is deemed good enough to enter a release..! There are a couple of other main contributors who do a lot of work, and put in a lot of their free time to this project. You are free to ask for features and request support and people are generally very helpful and quick to implement something if it is a good idea. BUT as this is a hobby project for these people, don't expect the same of them as you would of a company from whom you buy a product, IT IS UNFAIR! A word about Discord: Discord is a free chat (text and voice) platform that anyone can create a server on. Discord as a whole is not run by the people behind N.I.N.A., only the NINA server, and as such is not moderated by the developers.
  2. Skywatcher 80 ED DS-Pro outfit including matched flattener and motor focus. Now only £350 This kit gives you a great introduction to astronomy and imaging, which is why it's so popular. You can see details over at FLO but there is: 80 ED Ds-Pro OTA (Objective Lens Diameter: 80mm, Telescope Focal Length: 600mm, f/7.5) SW Eyepiece (2"): 28mm 2”/50.8mm Di-Electric Star Diagonal 9x50 Finderscope Dual-Speed 11:1 2” Crayford Focuser (Backlash-Free) Supplied with Tube Rings & Mounting Plate - please note there is a longer black vixen type dovetail fitted, not the fancy new green short one you will see on the FLO site SW motor focus and fitting kit - I've never used this, hence it's not fitted (more details over on FLO) Dedicated SW 0.85x reducer/flattener (see FLO for more details) Aluminium Carrying / Shipping Case The RRP is over £720, so grab a bargain while you can. Collection from Nottingham, or DHL for £20 (within UK)
  3. Hello, I have a question about filterwheels; SBIG filter wheels specifically. As far as I know they are the only ones that really use the 8 position filter wheels. So I have it loaded with L, R, G, B, Ha, OIII, and SII. So that is seven filters, what goes in the 8th slot??? Thank you for your insight, Christopher
  4. Hi guys Can anyone identify which control box this is? Is it focusmaster? And does it run off robofocus driver in Indi lib as I cannot get a successful connection (in indi within ekos) I bought a robofocus motor with this control box second hand. I have faith with seller that hardware works as should. I've tried other cables and USB ports too. The software (k stars) I use does do port search when connecting equipment.. Any help appreciated Wayne
  5. I've just bought a Daystar Solar Scout 60mm DS for H-alpha imaging of the Sun. I am now looking for a suitable camera to use with it. I know I could use my DSLR, but for H-alpha that is not going to give best results, so am looking for a dedicated monochrome imaging camera. I have identified the ZWO ASI178MM as a possibility that fits my budget and has a large enough (I think) sensor to image the entire Solar disc if I use a 0.5 focal reducer which will give me a total focal length of 465 mm. Does anyone have any experience of this camera in this application, or know if it will be suitable? I know it does not have an IR blocking filter, which I understand is an advantage for H-alpha. The spec is available here: https://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/zwo-asi178mm-usb-30-monochrome-cmos-camera.html Thanks Mandy
  6. Hi, this question has probably been done to death here, but can I ask the community to help me decide on a new camera? After struggling with my very glitchy QHY5LIIc camera for a while, as well as having a forced break from astronomy, I have decided to get a new camera. After all the problems I've been having with the QHY, I really don't want to use this manufacturer again. I know lots of people use them quite happily, but once bitten ... I have been looking at the ZWO cameras - OSC, as I haven't the time, clear skies, or patients to do LRGB imaging! I have about £250 to spend, which I may be able to push to £300 if I wait a bit. ? So I've been looking at the ASI224MC, ASI290MC and the ASI178MC cameras. I mainly do planetary/Luna imaging, but I have also dabbled in a bit of DSO and would like to continue with both. I have a C9.25 and a ST80 guide scope. I know these aren't ideal for DSOs but please humour me! I think from the specs/information that the 224 is probably the best option. Although the resolution and QE are the worst of the three, the well depth and read noise are the best and the fps is pretty good too. I don't know if there are better/cheaper cameras using the same chips, such as Altair's range. I just don't want to make the same mistake that I did with the QHY!n Any help/advice you can give will be much appreciated.?
  7. Hello, I am wanting (not really ) to sell my Stellarvue SV105-3SV with tube rings [not shown in pictures]. The telescope is in great condition with very little dust and no scratches. There is one very small ding in the dew shield paint but it is not dented and it is almost not even noticeable. It happened when I took the telescope out of the saddle and it lightly hit the saddle. The telescope has never been dropped or had any issues and is optically perfect with a strehl of .95 or higher (claimed by Stellarvue). I've only used this telescope for imaging however I've once or twice thrown an eyepiece in it during a star party or two and it's VERY crisp with no false color. Currently I live in Italy so that's where it can be picked up or shipped from. Price is negotiable however Stellarvue says it is worth around $1200-$1500 USD. The nice thing is you wouldn't have any VAT from Stellarvue . Please let me know if you have any questions, comments or are interested. Lastly, here is a link to some images that I've taken with it and what it looks like mounted up: https://www.astrobin.com/users/chriscorkill/ SV105-3SV Specifications Aperture: 105mm Apochromatic Precision Triplet Focuser: 3" Dual Speed Focuser with 2" and 1.25" eye piece adapters F Ratio: f/7 Focal Length: 735mm Color Correction: Excellent Minimum Tube Length: 16" in travel mode Tube Diameter: ~ 4-1/8" (105mm) Dew Shield Diameter: ~ 5-3/8" (137mm) OTA Weight: ~12lbs (5.4kg) Retractable Dewshield: Yes
  8. Hi, Folks I am only a few weeks into astronomy and started off with a Celestron 9.25" Evo on the standard AZ mount. I guess with hindsight this wasn't the best place to start and also with hindsight I would have done better to have bought a GEM mount. Anyway, lesson learned and at 71 years old I have to speed up the learning process compared to younger enthusiasts I have 2 issues. 1/ Its a pain dragging the scope out into the garden and setting it up every time I think the fickled weather might be obliging. 2/ I now know that the mount I have is useless for long exposures and a wedge is fiddly to get polar aligned. My question is, though I gather wedges are a PITA to setup etc is if I was to build or buy a pier for the backyard and use my existing mount + a wedge is this a reasonable way to go? Though it's fiddly to set the thing up once set I could leave the mount, wedge, etc covered up and would just need to drop the OTA on when I wanted to use it. Is this reasonable or am I missing something fundamental down near the bottom end of my learning curve Any advice much appreciated and don't feel you have to spare my feelings
  9. So, I have gone and got myself a Skywatcher Star Discovery 150p, which has so far proved to be a very good little scope and I've had some very good results. I have now got the bug for imaging and have gone out and got myself a second hand Nikon D5100 and verious other equipment needed to do this, only to now find I can't get Prime Focus!!!!!!!! So the only way I can image is using a barlow x2 which obviously changes the F ratio from F5.5 to F11 slowing everything x2 this isn't to bad for planetary imaging but for DSO images not so good!!! After searching through lots of videos on to do this all I can find is...... I can either butcher the standard rack and pinion focuser that's fitted on it by cutting it down and rethreading it or by moving the primary up by 20-25mm, which seems a shame to do a brand new scope still under warranty! The only other option I have come up with is changing the focuser to a Skywatcher Low Profile Dual Speed Focuser For Newtonian Reflectors. Could anyone out there shed any light on this before I spend another £130 on the new focuser. Thanks
  10. Hey StarGazersLounge Forums, I am an amateur in astrophotography and have so far taken photos of the Moon and some planets with my camera. However, I am looking for a major upgrade in order to take astrophotography to a professional level as I have long been passionate about astronomy. My overarching aim with astrophotography is to take high quality photos of many planets and continue my interest with the universe. I would be very grateful if anyone could recommend the best set up regardless of the price at the moment as I will work from there. This includes a camera, mount and eyepiece for the Celestron 8se etc so I can get a good idea of what I need to get some amazing planetary shots. By the way, for the camera, I am considering the Sony a7r iii (good choice?) for astrophotography and nature photography as well. Any form of advice would be much appreciated. George
  11. All set up to go with the sole aim of getting some Saturn images! To start off it was Jupes again to get some imaging done... The GRS superbly placed and looking Redder than a lidl tomato (subliminal advertising) After capturing some film it was time to properly align using Polaris and that wonderful on ya knees polar scope method!!! Boom!! three calibration stars and 'GoTo' whatever you wish for! Cygnus time - Check sheets and then give up and go and fetch Sissy Haas bible... 20 lovely doubles, not rushed just enjoyed and studied hard... working with my Starwave f/11 102 and for those difficult ones a 6.5 Meade HD and even with the 2.5 Revelation Barlow gave interesting views... 200x the recommended max mag on that Starwave, I squeezed more than that out of her. The stars looked round and colourful the companions sometimes hard to spot... But there's a great deal of satisfaction when you see them close by. I made some star symbol notes in the book when a true double of beauty made me smile, my top few were: Σ 2668 Superb 26 Gyg lovely 17 Cyg 19 Cyg Bright Red Ψ Cyg Σ 2687 Sharp 49 Cyg Faint 48 Cyg Wide H IV 113 Spot on (why did I write that?) 61 Cyg Nice Also - Σ 2760, 59 Cyg, 52 Cyg, O Σ 410, Σ 2705, Σ 2588, S 726, Σ 2578, 16 Cyg, δ Cyg So that's my haul for the night... By the time I had finished those it was 01:30 and cloud had covered what was left of Saturn. The great thing about that session was that I didn't have those long whiney scope movements around the sky, it was all within the constellation. I expect my neighbours with open windows were also grateful. Love that 102 f/11 Starwave scope.... A lot of the comments in Sissy Haas recommend a 150mm for some of the hits I made with my 102 so I'm happy... to get the colour is special as well... Not sure my alignment was that great because after entering RA & Dec the doubles were not always centered which resulted in me having to move towards the nearest double looking star a lot of the times. Didn't get -19 Cyg or T Cyg although I tried... Oh and on editing my images I notice I bagged both Europa and Io.... shame Jupiter disappeared behind next doors roof before the shadow made a transit! I've had to lighten one image to show the moons so beware you professionals ?
  12. Been meaning to post this for a while so here is my image from that night. So I set up the scope with a view to letting it cool a little longer than it had been already and looked at Jupiter Guide app on my iphone and saw that the GRS was just finishing transiting across the disc so I whacked the 2x TV powermate and ASI120MC on and messed about with focus quickly and fired off a total of 5 avis. Below is the best image. The avi was 3024 frames and put through PIPP. I then ran it through registax 5.1 which decided to stack 2475 frames then I did the wavelets in there too. I did a little Unsharp Mask in PS CS2 also. The seeing was a little better at times but still not great I dont think. The jetsream was above us still so I don't think that helped at all. 22.12.2013 2475 of 3000 withUS by Gattouomo161, on Flickr
  13. Hello stargazers! after fixing the ED80 focuser tilt and FFR spacing issues (http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/249588-sw-ed80-reducer-elongated-stars-problem/) I have some trail (i think) in all exposures i take but it takes a lot of time to really build up and manifests in the images even in the center of the field! It becomes slightly visible in 10mins, worse in 20mins and in my opinion unusable in 30mins exposures. Gear used : Heq5 Pro Modified finderscope with QHY5 bolted firmly (although on 3 screw baader rings on single shoe on one of the rings not on a plate) on top of the ED80 Pulse guiding through ascom + pec trained and applied corrections while imaging One shot of 1800secs from last night Here is the plate solve of the image if that is of any help. Image Plate Solver script version 3.5.1 =============================================================================== Referentiation Matrix (Gnomonic projection = Matrix * Coords[x,y]): +0.00059136 -3.35323e-005 -0.948749 +3.35667e-005 +0.000591379 -0.805052 +0 +0 +1 Projection origin.. [1676.147757 1266.175055]pix -> [RA:+02 54 45.62 Dec:+60 26 33.75] Resolution ........ 2.132 arcsec/pix Rotation .......... 176.752 deg Focal ............. 522.35 mm Pixel size ........ 5.40 um Field of view ..... 1d 59' 7.6" x 1d 29' 59.1" Image center ...... RA: 02 54 45.583 Dec: +60 26 33.36 Image bounds: top-left ....... RA: 02 47 15.353 Dec: +59 37 27.51 top-right ...... RA: 03 02 57.738 Dec: +59 44 03.24 bottom-left .... RA: 02 46 12.014 Dec: +61 07 05.13 bottom-right ... RA: 03 02 38.669 Dec: +61 13 59.48 =============================================================================== 200% crop of the centre of the image shows the problem clearly. And here is PhDLabs last night's analysis log. Second run does not look much different than the first one (to my untrained eyes at least). The phd graph did look at its best (flatline like) What do ladies and gents think? bad polar alignment, backlash on gears, differential flexure? If anyone has suggestions of the nature of the problem might be, I would be grateful.
  14. Hi All, So I am new to astrophotography and was looking for some advice on what to buy, mainly the mount as I don't have a huge budget. I am currently using a SkyWatcher 102mm Telescope (500mm Focal Length) with a Canon 550d along with a EQ2 mount, so no motors as of yet. Any advice on what mounts to get would be great. Thanks
  15. I currently have a Skywatcher Star Adventurer Tracking mount. I am looking at options to improve my accurate exposure time. My first option is autoguiding. What is an effective autoguiding solution for the Star Adventurer? Or am I better off completely upgrading to a Celestron Advanced VX without an autoguiding solution?
  16. Hello once again!! I'm ready to begin taking photos of the planets and deep sky and have a question or two. My telescope is a Ioptron 80mm. My camera is a Nikon D90. I just have the 18-55 lense, and the 55-200 lense, that came with it. My question is: do I need a t-ring, or a t-adapter to hook to camera up to the telescope? And are there any other accessories I need? Any advice you want to give is always greatly welcomed too! Thank You, Jon
  17. Hello all Im just started in imaging and I have to say I'm pleased with the first result BUT on closer inspection I see I have slightly oblong stars. So people know what I've got and done here it is http://www.astrobin.com/full/271950/0/?nc=user I have a baader coma corrector that I'm using set to 55mm from canon sensor and I have tried short exposures and I notice that it's still there in short exposures. Could it be collimation? It's the only thing I didn't do that evening. I would appreciate your input! Thanks Gerry
  18. Hi guys, I used to do a lot of astrophotography work when I lived in Plymouth but then I sold all equipment and lived in California for a while. Now I live in London and really miss doing some astrophotography but never really bothered because of the light pollution. The light pollution should not be such a big issue for planetary imaging and of course for solar imaging. I am thinking to either get a Coronado and try solar imaging or get a decent refractor and focus on lunar and planetary imaging. Does anyone have an experience with planetary imaging from London? What would you do? What equipment would you go for? Previously I had 10" computerised celestron but now I think refractor would be a better choice. Any advice very much appreciated, Martin Peniak
  19. Hi there, I'm hoping to buy an OIII filter for astro-imaging and i've read a lot of halo related posts and am unsure which to go for. Are the Baader OIII now halo-free? it sounds like OIII are notorious in general for halos and i want to be reasonably sure before i hand any money over. My astronomik ha 1.25" shows bad haloes, but the clip version doesn't although that one is newer. Will the astronomik OIII clip be halo-free? I am unable to reach the budget necessary for Astrodon, so i'm thinking the next best will be either Baader or Astronomik, is this pretty accurate or am i missing a manufacturer? Many thanks for any assistance in advance!
  20. Found an old (apparently USA model) celestron C8 SCT a while back, its a bit hit n miss with collimation and the optics - (some very strange star test shapes :P) but when it works it works well Here is a couple images from a couple months back. Thanks for looking. This particular night seeing was reasonably good, and collimation wasn't too bad either. Celestron C8 / ASI120MC / 2X barlow - captured in sharpcap2, stacked in autostakkert!2, wavelets in registax6
  21. Hi there, I have a DMK21AU04.AS mono camera which I wanted to start using for planetary imaging & I was wondering which filter I would need. I already have a IR pass filter but I was wondered if a IR/UV cut filter would be better? Any advice is appreciated. Cheers, Jeff
  22. Hey everyone, I searched the forum on this topic and was surprised to see that it wasn't being discussed! (at least not that I could find). I'll be using Skysafari pro to track its path, so I'm hopeful that I'll be able to find it... ... but then what's the best technique to image it? - Webcam? - DSRL in video mode? - Long exposure (guided)? What settings should we aim at? (ISO, exposure, etc) Anyone who hunted similar objects in the past who want to share their experience would be highly appreciated! Thanks Andrea
  23. Hi there, I am still new to amateur astronomy and astrophotography. I recently took my first steps towards moon and Jupiter photography. While I am satisfied with my moon pictures, I am struggling with Jupiter. I am a bit desperate, so I hope that maybe someone good give me a couple of useful hints so I can learn and improve. When shooting Jupiter without any barlow lense or eyepiece, I manage to get a sharp picture and am actually reasonably satisfied with the results (see attachments named "ok.."). I use Firecapture to shoot something like 3000 single images (mostly JPEG because I had issues with other formats.. maybe this is one of my first mistakes) and stack them afterwards. When recording AVI movies with Firecapture and dissecting them to single pictures afterwards, my results are less sharp than taking photos, so I sticked to recording images instead of movies. When the image is stacked, I continue with editing using Registax. After tweaking around, I obtain a sharp image of Jupiter as a result. Now to my issue: I want to obtain bigger images from planets, especially Jupiter, and therefore bought a premium 3x barlow lense. I tested it on the moon and was very satisifed when comparing the view (and images) to my cheap 2x barlow lense. So I think I managed to see the difference and I think that the new barlow lense does quite well. When putting the ASI ZWO cam into the barlow lense and shooting Jupiter, the effects of the seeing increases (as I expected) and the image starts getting more noisy, but the single frames I see within Firecapture are still ok (at least that is what I think, maybe I am wrong there). I play around with the values for gain and shutter speed, select the Jupiter profile and start shooting (max. 180s because of Jupiter's rotation, I receive around 20 - 50 FPS, depends on the shutter speed, ofc). After 3 minutes, I receive between 2000 and 4500 single JPEGs, depending on my settings. Of course I know BMP or TIFF should be better, however I often have issues with Firecatpure's BMPs/TIFFs when putting them into pre-processing software such as Pipp. I pre-process, stack and edit my images and then still have a blurry Jupiter in front of me (see attachment, images named "stack.."). No matter what I do and how I tune the settings within Registax, Jupiter won't become any sharper when using the stacks which were recorded through my 3 x barlow lense. Could this be because of my recordings (bad image format, not enough frames..)? Do I need more frames when recording through a barlow lense? Or can't I do any better under the conditions of my site (see below)? Are there any tricks when recording through a barlow, do I need other settings or shall I use another software? I attached the stacked image ("stack6_raw.tif") and am curious if someone could get more out of it. For me, this tif looks like the stacked pictures of the small Jupiter pictures, and I managed to get them sharper. So I wonder if it's me or if I simply can't expect more when using a barlow lense? If so, how can I shoot bigger and sharper pictures of Jupiter then (without having to switch my telescope, I know that my Newton is not the "planet killer"). I am greatful for all hints! My equipment and software I use: EQ6-R Pro with GoTo 8" inch Newton (200PDS 200mm 1000mm f/5) 3x Premium Barlow ASI ZWO 290 Color and cooled Recording: Firecapture Preprocessing: Pipp (Planetary, output in TIF) Stacking: Autostackert 3 Editin: Registax6 My site: Germany Small town, lots of light pollution, but it's still "ok" Mid - strong seeing on most days stack6_raw.tif single_stack6.tif single_small_jupiter.tif
  24. I am ready to purchase my laptop, it will be an Intel core i7 with all the trimmings, my questions is regarding drive space and typical imaging file size output. Many new computers have solid state hard drives, they are much faster but space is sacrificed as even the upper end laptops have 256gb SS drives. Somehow I feel that a 256gb drive will be low for an imaging laptop, I know I can add an external drive but I want to avoid carrying anything else. Maybe I should opt out of solid state and instead get one with a 1Tb standard drive?. Or, am I wrong, and 256gb SS drive will do the trick? I have no idea what a decent range is for typical nights imaging or solar imaging sessions.
  25. Another planetary imaging session, this time with the C8 and the ASI120MC camera. This was the first time I tried to image these with the C8 so something of a 'test'. The log shows that I spent 25 minutes of valuable time in taking the rig down after imaging Jupiter and setting it up in a different position to image the other two planets. Next time I'll put it in a different position that will avoid having to move it. The altitude of Jupiter was about 20 deg, and the other two at around a roof-skimming 10 deg. Unsurprisingly (or otherwise) the results seem a bit better than with the 127mm Mak. In particular, I could easily see the Great Red Spot in the laptop live view. I feel a bit disappointed that Jupiter did not sharpen up more in processing. Here are three of the processed images (processed in Registax6 and should be the noninverted & nonflipped view). Again, not the world's best, but... I focused the camera on Spica. Mars has processed up quite sharp and, again, distinctly non-round (88% phase). But any tips on focussing? there are some apps in Smartcap, or maybe I should get a Bahinov (sp?) mask. I also recorded some .ser video which won't load into Registax for some reason- have to look into why.
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