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Why are my photos always blurred?

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Hi guys,

I have been getting into astrophotography. Admittedly, I only have a basic setup, but I can never get anything in crystal clear focus through the telescope. There's nothing wrong with my camera (Canon 7D), as it takes crystal clear images through any normal lens.

I have tried taking photos of the moon, since I can see this through the 'live view' mode on the camera's display. When I use the zoom function in live view mode, it doesn't matter how long I spend on focussing, it just seems impossible to get any decent clarity (this is before actuating the shutter). I can't understand why.

Also taking photos of the moon should be easy as you only need very short shutter times, so effectively the moon could be photographed through a Dobsonian. However, I have used my Orion scope on an EQ mount with RA tracking, but with no better results.

Maybe someone here could shed some light on the subject.

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does the view look any sharper through the eyepiece?.. if not then you may need to collimate.

Have you tried a Bahtinov mask?

Can you post any images, (of stars ideally) we may be able to confirm/deny collimation issues.


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Atmospheric distortion and the off axis coma in a Newtonian may also play a part.

Your eye may see a sharp image because the brain is able to stack multiple images and 'remove' some of the atmospheric distortion. It is the same reason why a £50 webcam works much better then a DSLR for lunar and planetary imaging.

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How are you operating the shutter, do you have a remote control?

If you are pressing it manually, the vibration could be the problem.

Use delayed exposure if you can, so that having pressed the button, the scope has time to settle down before the exposure takes place

If your camera has mirror lock up,. use that function too.

If you use spectacles, focus with them on. Your eyes can compensate without them when viewing, but the camera won't make alowances for your eyes with your glasses off.


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It is the same reason why a £50 webcam works much better then a DSLR for lunar and planetary imaging.

This is key to the answer I think - a fast frame rate camera will always outperform a DSLR on an object like the Moon although you could try capturing numerous DSLR images and stacking them using the free software 'Registax'. I have always been disappointed with single shot images of the Moon but pleasantly surprised out how they improve with multiple images stacked. You only have to examine the Moon 'pulsating' in a live capture on screen to see what the 'seeing' does to the view!

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