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andromeda galaxy dslr settings?


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anyone got any tips for what settigns i should be having to get some images of the andromeda galaxy? its a 200p on an eq5 so yes i know its not ideal but i still wanna give it a go.

exposure is the thing im not sure about

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try 400/800 depends how long you gonna be takeing the sub for just a 3 sec shot will get you the smudge trial and error give it a go on dif iso settingsbut get a couple on each setting get them on screen and have a look you will see the result , i have had this on iso 200 on a 120sec sub worked well try them all and see which gives the best shots

pat

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If its unguided, I'd get a mixture of 30 second subs and 1-1.30 minute subs and stack them separately, then mix together in photoshop. Possibly move the ISO up to 1600 rather than 800 to gather more light. Dont forget your darks.

A 200P unguided will move around a bit, then best I ever got reliably was 110 second subs, but was throwing away 1 in every 3. But by getting short and long exposures and mixing them, you should get quite alot of detail. You'll need to get at least 20 subs to get any data worth having, although, because they're relatively short, I'd go for 50 of each if poss?

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I was doing 5min guided subs at 1600 for my last attempt.

Try a mix of ISO, but first spend some time nailing that polar alignment, try a little drift aligning you can get 2 mins unguided if you try, without to much hassle.

Edited by Earl
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thanks for help everyone :) i love this place, so much help :)

gonna get the PA spot on, then il get the baht out, sort focus and lock, then finally atatch the remote i got for the 400d which lets you set it to take say 30s exp 50 times over without having to keep pressing the damn thing! can leave a gap between each sub to let it cool etc.

will be interesting to see what i get. will post results as soon as ive got anythign decent!

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Unguided, but driven and well polar-aligned, I'd go for loads of 30 second subs. A word of warning, though. The Andromeda galaxy is BIG, and you will only get part of it in the frame of your DSLR.

Edited by lukebl
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I'd go for 50 x 30 secs, 50 x 90 secs, 50 darks, 50 flats (if you can be bothered, use your laptop screen and some tshirt.), at ISO 1600. With a 200P and A Canon 400D you will get 90% of M31 on screen, but you have to take plenty of test shots to frame it right.

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it pains me to say it, but it was 2 hours of frustration :headbang:

aftyer spending quite a while getting what i thought was good PA, I proceeded to spend a long long time looking for the galaxy with an ep to no avail. then thought ok, il just get some practice in with the camera, focussing and stuff - turns out polar alignment was way off :D anything over 5s gave trailing.

ARGGGGGGGGGH

i think the seeing wasnt too great as it was low ish in the sky, last time i saw it was abuot a month ago higher up and found it easily a good 5-10 tmies that night.

as for the PA - hvnt got a clue what was giong on there :) . think im getting rusty :), or probly was never that good at it in the first place! :eek:

still, il persevere. il get there in the end :) i hope

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I've always found it tricky to spot, and very susceptible to light pollution. My best visuals (two days ago) were with binoculars (NE). By the time I dragged the Dob out, it had moved eastwards so I spent fifteen minutes looking in the wrong direction. Did find her at last

It's not too low at 23-00 ish. Have another go.

Edited by hamiclar01
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it pains me to say it, but it was 2 hours of frustration :headbang:

aftyer spending quite a while getting what i thought was good PA, I proceeded to spend a long long time looking for the galaxy with an ep to no avail. then thought ok, il just get some practice in with the camera, focussing and stuff - turns out polar alignment was way off :D anything over 5s gave trailing.

ARGGGGGGGGGH

Yup, going through that pain myself, but in my case it appears that it's more equipment related rather than alignment.

I'm working my way through a dozen 80 second exposures of M31 taken with my 300D set at 800 ISO, but most of the staked and processed images come out worse than the original single frames.

i think the seeing wasnt too great as it was low ish in the sky, last time i saw it was abuot a month ago higher up and found it easily a good 5-10 tmies that night.

Yes, having it low down will give you more problems as you are looking through the merk. However getting a good light pollution filter helps. I managed to try out a clip filter for my Canon last night and the difference was amazing... the background went from orange to black !

as for the PA - hvnt got a clue what was giong on there :) . think im getting rusty :), or probly was never that good at it in the first place! :eek:

still, il persevere. il get there in the end :) i hope

That's the spirit....

Think of each clear night that you manage to observe as a learning curve and one day it will all fall into place.

On a footnote... after some re-alignment and messing about with the control method of the scope, I took one single exposure to see what the tracking was like. The attached image is at 800ISO, 300 seconds (5min!) un-guided (just the synscan drive). Needs some tweaking in PS or something, but the dust clouds are just visible.

Edit, strange that when uploaded the image takes on a green tinge...

post-23388-133877640557_thumb.jpg

Edited by malc-c
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malcolm, nice image :) especially for 5 mins unguided! did you take that through a telescope or with a lens? i only ask because a while ago i managed ~ 2 min widefield subs, and that was my very first time at polar alignment, and i didnt have even a hint of trailing :) maybe i had beginners luck which tricked me into beleiving that PA was easier than it is?

I think i may just whack the 400d on the eq5 mount, PA and tracking and aim the 250mm lens towards andromeda, you reckon id get good results?

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I think i may just whack the 400d on the eq5 mount, PA and tracking and aim the 250mm lens towards andromeda, you reckon id get good results?

Yeah, Andromeda is a very big target. 250mm should get it all in as well as a nicely framed star-field.

This is a crop of a 200mm sub I took to see if it would fit to give you an example of what resolution to expect on a 10 MP camera. I had a bit of room to spare as well around the frame.

b0260ece290383558f922da07769f5e1-d42b3zp.jpg

Alan.

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Which EQ5 do you have ?

Has it got the after market battery operated motors ??

I've got the battery motors - they're ok for viewing, but not imaging (which is why i'm saving up for a good mount) .......

Before trying to find a specific target, a test is alwasy usefull on a random section of sky.

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I have often thought on this question - as a raw rookie - and its not often that exposure details are given with images. There'd be nothing worse than doing 30x subs + calibration frames only to find later that they are over/underexposed. For M31, I'd reasoned ISO800 @ 120s guided/DSLR, ready for a good night. But perhaps ISO400 @ 120s would be OK. At the end of the day, normal exposures by day come with trial and error and experience according to type of daylight. Guess the same goes for DSO imaging.

There is an exposure calculator on Covingtons web site which may provide a start point.

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