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Found 165 results

  1. Hi, I'm relatively new to the whole telescope thing but have done my research and was fixed on getting the Orion skyquest XT8i or XT10i. By spending that much money, I didn't like the idea of purchasing it online from their website without seeing it in person (and not having the reassurance of being able to take it back) and looked for stores in the UK that would supply them. After plenty of research, it seems like they don't exist anymore and they are only in the US? Is this right or could anyone help me? (I've looked at the Sky-watcher 250PX/200PX flextube skyscan goto but it is significantly heavier and the noise of the goto mechanism sounds like a table saw so that's put me off of it...) Any help would be much appreciated, Thanks
  2. Friends, I am back with a tutorial video on how to modify your Sky Watcher HEQ5-PRO mount or its American twin, the Orion Sirius EQ-G into a belt driven mount. The benefits of converting to a belt drive is that you don't have to worry about Backlash. The procedure took me about an hour to complete. Link is below https://youtu.be/PjDZiXaN5KM
  3. Since I am very new to this, I struggle a lot. Especially when observing planets and also recently deep sky objects. My telescope is an amateur telescope and its almost 11 years old (The telescope was re used a year ago). During summer of last year I took photos of Saturn,Jupiter and a month ago took photos of Venus and Mars. About 2 days ago I stumbled upon a new thing in the sky, (Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture). It definitely was in the Orion constellation as I had observed Betelgeuse and the 3 stars that were close to each other. After a couple of minutes later I saw 2 stars next to each other and another two which were on top of the other star, surrounding these set of stars were a blue-ish and grey-ish colour at the same time. I had done some research and many people told me it was the trapezium cluster found in Orion. I honestly don't know. Any ideas? Thanks.
  4. I've been processing this image for quite a long now. I started acquiring data the last season when I only managed to shoot 3 panels with the Canon 6D through the Esprit 80 for a total of ~7h. This season I restarted and I added more data and covered a wider area. So a mix of portrait and landscape panels were planned and shot with the same scope and camera. Now every pixel represents at least 3-4h of integration, some have more. All the above were shot from Bortle 2-3 sites where I traveled sometimes even for an hour of exposure. To the RGB data I added 17.5h of Ha, same story with the panels. Some were oriented N-S, others E-W. These were shot with the SW 72ED and the ASI1600 from home and Bortle ~7. Then I figured out I still had time and I planned and shot 9 more panels of luminance with the 72ED and ASI1600, each consisting of 1h of exposure. I combined all of these into an image, processed it and for the Orion nebula and Running Man nebula I also blended some data I shot last season with the 130PDS and ASI1600 from home. Below it's my first final version of all data combined. You can watch it in full resolution on astrobin: https://www.astrobin.com/full/jni0w8/ or Flickr: https://flic.kr/p/2iBGUXq
  5. This may be an artifact, but I took this shot of the Orion Constellation from the Canary Islands and it showed a small nebula around Beteleguse. Do you think this is real? The shot was taken with a dual band filter which brings out the Ha. I initially assumed it was a camera artifact, but I took more shots with different camera positions and it was still there. There are some on-line articles about such a nebula. My first reaction was to edit it out, but I think it might be real and only visible because Beteleguse has dimmed by over 50%. What do you think? Max
  6. I just try to show the beauty of the night sky, and again the possibilities with a smartphone. There are already better applications at the google play to make the night lapse easy. At first I used the Gif maker pro. It's a good app to edit the frames, before creating video, but you can't save the videos in good quality. Now I use the TimeLab app (same developer, as Intervalometer app), in the editing it has not so many options, but with this app you can save the videos in 4K too, or full HD. This video is 360 frames (each 30 sec exposition at ISO 800) Huawei P10 monochrome camera, Intervalometer app, TimeLab app. Pictures taken in Kleinwalsertal, Austria 2019. 09. 23-24. (The video is full HD, I don't know, why, but it doesn't run continuesly on my PC, when I watch that back on SGL. I hope, on your monitors you can enjoy it!) VID_timelab_20190924054735.mp4 VID_timelab_20190924054735.mp4
  7. From the album: William Optics GT71 II

    © (c) 2020 Garrick Walles

  8. Hello All! Currently, I have a Meade ETX 90 telescope. I really like it and get great views of the moon and planets out of it. However, I am hoping to upgrade to a large reflector. I am looking at various scopes ranging from the Orion SkyQuest XT8 to the forbiddingly pricey Orion SkyQuest XT12i Intelliscope. I know that aperture is one of the most important things to consider in a telescope, but I also realize that people can get "aperture fever" and go for scopes that are unnecessarily large. I am wondering; Is a bigger aperture worth the price jump from 8'' to 10'' or from 10'' to 12''? How much more will I be able to see? I have heard that the best telescope for a person is dependent on the kinds of things they want to observe. I don't really look at deep sky objects (though I am getting increasingly interested in them), and mostly enjoy the moon, planets, and a few double stars. I want a telescope that will accommodate this, but is also able to have a great grasp on deep sky objects. Honestly I think I am on the right track with the scopes I am looking at, but I really want some advice on which size is best for me. What do you think? Thanks for the advice!
  9. Before I purchase one, I’m wondering if anyone has a 50 or 60 mm RACI with illuminated eyepiece they would like to sell? Thanks Andy.
  10. From the album: Stars and Constellations

    Taken using Canon 100D on Skywatcher Star Adventurer - 55mm lens - single 4 minute exposure at ISO 800 You can clearly see M42 The Orion Nebula within "the sword", and there is a hint of The Flame Nebula and The Horsehead Nebula around the bottom left star of "the belt" Taken during a trip out to The Dales on Thursday night at a nice dark site between Kettlewell and Hawes

    © Vicky050373

  11. From the album: Wide-field (not barn-door)

    Alternately developped version where some gamma stretching was used rather than brightness stretching. Hence most saturated values are pale or grey/white. Shows a bit more contrast though.

    © Fabien COUTANT

  12. Nadine2704

    Orion Nebula

    From the album: Astrophotography

    Taken with my iOptron Skytracker and Canon 70d with 300mm lens.
  13. From the album: Jon's images

    Milky Way Winter Triangle
  14. Like the lunatic that I am, I decided to get the scope out last week during that storm that was passing through. The skies were clear and there was no moon about, so I figured why not! Only problem was the 17-20 mph winds, lol. I got 2 hrs of subs but had to throw away half of them due to guiding problems more so than the wind, amazingly. This was the 2nd time in a row i'd had Dec guiding problems, and that's after about 2 years of not having a single problem guiding. After the 1st hr of wasted subs, I turned off Fast Switching in Dec and chose to only Dither in RA, and the Dec problems mostly went away, at least to allow me to capture 1 hr of 'still dodgy but just about useable' subs. Once M42 disappeared behind the neighbour's roof, I then re-calibrated on the Celestial Equator (Dec 0) and when I switched to the Pinwheel Galaxy I was able to guide as normal again (with Fast Switching and Dithering in both RA and Dec both turned on again) and didn't lose any subs, despite the wind, so I've decided that from now on I won't be calibrating at the target itself, i'm always going to do it at Dec 0. I decided to throw this in with another 1 hr of subs (plus 10 x 30s for the core) that I took back in Jan 2017 (has it really been that long?!). That hr also had issues, with some weird streaking in the lower left that I could never work out what caused it. The D5300 hadn't been modified at that stage either. So I fired it all in to APP and decided to stack it anyway, and give it a quick process. Then chose to crank it up to 11 on the colour front, just for laughs. It won't be going on the wall anytime soon, lol, but I suppose it came out a bit better than I was expecting, all things considered. 20 x 360s with an IDAS-D1 D5300, 80ED, HEQ5-Pro. Stacked in APP, processed in PS. CS! edit - I forgot to downscale it - so no pixel peeping allowed ?
  15. Hi Guys, I thought I would share with you my first DSO taken with my new Orion 8" Ritchey Chretien F8 Telescope. The frame is made up of 12 x 4min shots, no light or dark frames, using my Sony A7Rii camera. The camera had the long exposure noise reduction switched on, which does help to reduce the total number of stars captured by the camera, as the Sony A7Rii does tend to overdo the number of stars captured. The telescope was mounted on my trusty skywatcher NEQ6 mount and the guiding was via PHD 'of course' via my skywatcher ED50 guide scope. The shots were taken from my back garden in Stowmarket, Suffolk where I believe I am a Bortie 4 location, so the skies are mostly dark, with just a little light pollution from the main town, no filters used. My normal telescope is a Skywatcher ED100 Pro Esprit F5.5, which is an incredibly sharp scope, but with a wide 550mm field of view, great for capturing the whole of Andromeda but a struggle with smaller images like the Iris Nebula. I will say the Orion RC scope did need to be collimated out of the box, which was a little disappointing, and it was not just a little out of collimation, it was a long way out, but with the use of a collimating tool, I soon had it dialled in. First impressions of the Orion Ritchey Chretien 8" Telescope are fair, not super impressed, as it is nowhere near as sharp as my ED100 Esprit, but then this is to be expected based on price and telescope type, however, the pictures it has produced are pretty good, if you downscale the full 42MP from the Sony A7Rii camera, as can be seen in this picture. I purchased this 8" Orion Ritchey Chretien OTA mainly for Planetary work, but as yet I have not had a chance to 'get onto' a planet, fingers crossed some clear nights will arrive soon, so I can try. I welcome comments, many thanks Jamie
  16. So I know Orion has been down now for a while, but I just wanted to share this one. For me, it was a literal labour of love. Orion took on a more personal meaning for me at the tale end of last year, much more than just a target in the night sky. I won't bore you all with details, other than it was all very Romeo and Juliet. Anyway, the one night we went for a drive the other side of Hereford (this was mid February), took a firepit, hot chocolate, jacket potatoes and some very warm coats! It was a blustery night, the intervalometer was acting up and Orion was still in Hereford's light dome kinda. But, still managed to get some images with the 18-55 kit lens on the trusty Nikon 5300 despite all of that. Had all but given up on the stacking and processing 2 months later but decided to run it thru Sequator as DSS wasn't working for me. Was 2am, I was dead tired from work and my good old thyroid in full on flare. Happened to yawn, rub my eyes and momentarily refocus them on the laptop screen...to realise I could just very faintly make out Barnard's Loop. Spent the next couple of days rerunning the stack thru Sequator with different parameters to finally produce the attached image. It's messy, it's noisy as hell, it's nowhere near technically correct, but for ME it's a very bittersweet image (two days later Romeo and Juliet parted ways) and a reminder of what happy is. Anyway, I just wanted to share it.
  17. Update: 3rd June Re-processed to remove slight magenta tint caused by the non-uniform removal of light pollution by the DBE process ( it was being fooled by the very bright image centre ). The globular star cluster Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) in Centaurus ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) A full size image can be found here. original below ..... A newly captured ( May 2018 ) image of the great southern globular star cluster, Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) in Centaurus - ( please click / tap image to see larger and sharper ) A full size ( ~ 6000 x 4000 ) image can be found here ....... This image is an attempt to look deeply into the mighty Omega Centauri star cluster and, by using HDR techniques, record as many of its faint members as possible whilst capturing and bringing out the colours of the stars, including in the core. Image details: Resolution ........ 0.586 arcsec/px ( full size image ) Rotation .......... 0.00 deg ( up is North ) Focal ............. 1375.99 mm Pixel size ........ 3.91 um Field of view ..... 58' 20.9" x 38' 55.1" Image center ...... RA: 13 26 45.065 Dec: -47 28 27.26 Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher Eq8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels)\ Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( May 2018 ) 8 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 2s to 240s ) all at ISO 250. Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 8 sets HDR combination Pixinsight May 2018
  18. Galaxy NGC 4945 in Centaurus Details: Galaxy NGC 4945 in Centaurus 19 May 2018 Orientation: North is up Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7\ Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.91um pixels) image Plate Solver script version 5.0 =========== Resolution ........ 0.586 arcsec/px Rotation .......... North is up Focal ............. 1375.43 mm Pixel size ........ 3.91 um Field of view ..... 43' 27.2" x 28' 54.2" Image center ...... RA: 13 04 51.790 Dec: -49 30 37.17 ========== Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 19 May 2018 ): 10 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1/2th sec to 240 sec ) all at ISO250. ( 41 x 240sec + ~8 each forthe other durations ) Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 10 sets HDR combination Pixinsight May 2018
  19. Carina Nebula with the bright unstable star Eta Carinae in the centre of the image. edit ( 27 March ): Tweak to shadow levels to bring out more detail and also a slight reduction in the brightness of the highlights. A much larger version ( 4562 x 3072 6062 x 4082) is available on my Flickr page. previous version: Carinae Nebula ( NGC 3372 ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) From Wikipedia ... "Eta Carinae is a highly luminous hypergiant star. Estimates of its mass range from 100 to 150 times the mass of the Sun, and its luminosity is about four million times that of the Sun." This HDR image is constructed from 12 sets of exposures ranging from 1/8 sec ( to capture the bright centre of Eta Carinae ) through to 240 seconds. Total exposure time around 13 hours 17-19 March 2018 Image details: Objects in image: Hypergiant, Eta Carinae ( HD 93308 ) in the centre of the Homunculus Nebula Carina Nebula ( NGC 3372 ) Keyhole Nebula Open Star Clusters: - Trumpler 14, 15, 16 - Collinder 232 Field of view ..... 59' 18.2" x 39' 56.0" Image centre ...... RA: 10 45 01.762 Dec: -59 40 52.87 Orientation: North is up Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels) Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 17, 18 & 19 March 2018 ): 12 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1/8s to 240s ) all at ISO250. ( 181 x 240sec + 10 to 20 each for the other durations ) Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 12 sets HDR combination Pixinsight March 2018
  20. Hello all, I'm starting a new thread for this since the hydrogen data is rather old and it has been reprocessed since I posted a while ago. Now I finished the acquisition of O[III] too. Or sort of, I planned more, but clear nights were so rare that I decided to process what I had. The image was done in "3 pass" data over the area. That means that I acquired 3 sets of images covering the same area and combined in the end. First 2 in hydrogen, the last in oxygen. First set consisted of 3 panels in portrait mode for the top area and then I wanted to extend them to the bottom so I shot another 2 panels in landscape mode. I knew that I could get a higher SNR so I shot 4 more panels in landscape mode. Each panel consists of 30-31 subs, each sub 300s. Then I started the acquisition of O[III] which needed light pollution and moonlight conditions than the Ha required. Top panels contain 30 subs, but the bottom ones, only 20-22. Each 300s. Luckily there's not much oxygen in that area so I could get away with less subs. I also took some 10s-30s frames for M42's core. For the framing, I created a quick mosaic of the same area. For the final alignment I shot an image somewhere close to the center of this area. I can't remember if the initial register was done in APP or Registar - for the first pass, but for the next ones it was done in Registar. I removed the gradient manually in each stack with APP and then I created the mosaics for each pass same with APP. The 2 Ha passes I then blended manually 50%-50%. For the processing, I tried to stretch both Ha and O[III] to the same levels and I combined them manually in some 60-40/70-30 ratio for a layer which I used as lum. The colours were Ha - reddish, O[III] - cyan-blue. I spent a lot of time trying to control the big stars, the O[III] filter has poor coatings and, together with the ASI1600s non AR coated sensor, I had much brighter reflections than with the Ha filter. And I tried to raise the oxygen levels selectively around the flame and NGC2023, but the flame is really dim in O[III]. Don't know what other details in the story I forgot, this project drained me a lot of energy. Camera was ASI1600MMC, cooled to -15C for the first pass and to -25C for the ones following. Gain 139. Canon 300 F4 L IS lens with a lot of aberrations towards the edges. AZ-EQ5 mount guided with a 200mm lens and an ASI120MM, with varying seeing. 1.5-2.5" RMS guiding error usually. APT for capture, PHD2 for guiding, Registar for each night initial alignment. DSS, APP, Registar, StarTools, GIMP for processing. I started shooting early in October and I wanted much more, but Orion already becomes less and less visible from where I image and hides beyond the house. Ah, yes, I image from a yellow-pink light polluted area. Thanks for reading, thanks for looking! Comments and suggestions are appreciated. Links to original image and acquisition details: https://drive.google.com/open?id=17tr8lqagQAJg8maojtHZPbM-f67gSBTv https://drive.google.com/open?id=12gjGEgeR7FxR1Tow0e64JczeeUIqKojK https://www.astrobin.com/330284/ Alex
  21. Here's my first attempt at bi-colour HOO narrowband, using the OIII filter I got for Christmas Please do click through to Flickr and have a look at it with the magnifying glass, there's loads of detail in there. 23x600s Ha, 20x60s Ha, 10x600s OIII, 8x60s OIII, darks, flats and bias, equipment as per sig, Pixinsight. It was an absolute joy to process this, it was singing to me from the very first trial combination of stacks. I had lots of fun playing with colour balances (actually it's more like HOo, and then I let the red grow a bit, looks like a watermelon to me). Had fun with the HDR too. I've done some HaLRGB before, and I have the skies for it, but I'm finding HaLRGB to be quite frustrating - takes ages to process to get the balance right, and even then it seems to be a compromise between the detail of the Ha and the colours of the RGB, and all too often, it comes out like a big red smudge. I've got a Pacman in processing that might just end up left on the cutting room floor. It seems I've finally tamed my collimation and coma demons, but on this occasion, my guiding was surprisingly shocking. I normally get something like 0.45" rms error, but this time was as much as 2.5". We'd had near-gales the few days before I took this, and while it was calm at ground level on the nights I was capturing, I guess it was still hurtling around in the upper atmosphere - pretty twinkling stars, and a rather less pretty guide star bouncing around all over the place in PHD. I had to throw away nearly half of my OIII because the stars were too fat, as you can tell from the capture details above. Just for a laugh, here is my first attempt, taken 6 years ago with an unmodded DSLR - a shamefully small set of data (ahem, 13x10s !) and processed within an inch of its life (I think this was about the 4th reprocess), but not a bad attempt I suppose. Anyway, hope you enjoy, comments and cc welcome ! Cheers, Stuart
  22. Update 16th June: I could not wait to tell people that I was just notified that my image of Omega Centauri will be published as a future NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day ( APOD ) - my first ever I will update the thread when they publish. ................................. A deep look at Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) This image is an attempt to look deeply into the the Omega Centauri globular cluster by using HDR techniques to record as many faint stars as I can whilst retaining colour and detail in the bright stars, including at the core ... ............. Reprocessed to bring out more faint stars and to produce a smother transition between brightness levels. New version ( 12 June 2017 ): Omega Centauri ( NGC 5129 ) ( please click / tap on image to see lager and sharper ) .......... Old version: Omega Centauri ( NGC 5129 ) ( please click / tap on image to see full size and sharper ) Image details: from www.nova.astrometry.net: Size: 58.6 x 39 arcmins, Centre: 13h 26 min 50.4 sec, -47deg 28' 39.1''. Orientation: up is -89.9 East of North ( ie. E^ N> ). Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1410mm f4.7. Mount: Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT. Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 . Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels). No filter Long Exposure noise reduction off Location:. Blue Mountains, Australia. Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ). Capture: 9 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1s to 240s ) all at ISO800. Processing:. Calibration: master bias, master flat and no darks. Integration in 9 sets. HDR combination. Pixinsight May 2017
  23. I've had issues but, I stayed the course and got them taken care of , now to get a night of good alignment only 8 seconds @-15 due to alignment issue of stubbling over the tipod leg. The zwo 174MM cooled is my new workhoarse for it all and I'm still learning the camera capabilities and trying to find the settings for " full well " so I don't under or over sample to make every photon count.
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