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My Ugly versions of M31 & Witches Broom

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Was on a fact finding mission the night before last - just to iron out any kinks in my set-up and my own mind! As the last time I was out was May (weather/work/no darkness).

Also I purchased a USB 2.0 over Ethernet adapter so that I could run my setup from inside the house (20m). There was some setting up and testing to be done there. However after a few hours tinkering I'm confident now to say I can just fire up my PC slide off the roof of my little obsy/cover and away I can go! ;)

Although the moon was BIG & BRIGHT..I fired off a few images. Why you might ask was I trying to image (M31) right next to the moon...eh...I don't know..just fancied it..But it's making processing a bit of an issue.

Not much data here and YES I must get out and take FLATS!!! Will maybe get round to that today.

Details - M31 just over 1hr x 300s ISO400. 5 :D Darks.

Witches Broom - Focus was a little out on this one - 1hr x300s ISO800 no darks..just to tired to keep going (6am!)

All taken with Modded 300D + CLS Clip, ED80 @ Prime, HEQ5 Guided. Processed with DSS & PS CS3.

Doesn't look pretty, does it? :) Wasn't really expecting much though with that moon and the little data, 10 year old camera and no callibration frames, and by the looks of it some seriously dirty optics! :D Will get a whole moonless night on one target with loads of calibration frames...YET! :D

Here is the link to the unprocessed images for you to download and have a go..PLEASE DO!! :DDropbox - Public - Simplify your life

Comment/re-process all welcome!





Edited by msinclairinork
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I have given up on Flats I just cant seem to either a) take them right :D calibrate them or c) no clue.

Dont give up!!! I use a DSLR and my inability to take flats ruined most of my images. It took me a long time to understand how a flat was made. I avoided it or created images that I assumed were flats which did nothing for my photos. I was so frustrated by the vignetting in my images I almost gave up. I posted a question on this site and finally realized how to do it properly. I have to thank Psychobilly for that.

1) Use the same ISO settings

2) Use the same focus settings (dont twist the focus knobs)

3) Adjust the shutter speed and start taking photos of a flat white screen or light box

4) Adjust the shutter until your image is not pure white, but starts showing vignetting or dust bunnies

5) Once you get the correct shutter speed, take about 15 to 20 images and stack them with your lights and darks

After doing it all wrong for about a year, it took me one post and about 20 minutes to get my first proper master flat. Give it a try and good luck:)

Edited by JohnnyD333
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I am still struggling to 'master' (read have any positive effect at all) flat frames but then again I have struggled with every single step of astro imaging so far. You get there eventually don't you but it would be nice for something to be easy for a change.

Earl, what are you using to stack / calibrate the flats? I am using Maxim DL. It ought to be easy at that price but isn't.



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That's good. It wll make a heck of a difference but do take flats. They are very important. The deeper you go, the more you neeed them. BTW, nice to see you here again after the long arctic summer!!


Edited by ollypenrice
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