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Hello everyone,

Last wednesday, I tried my first shot with an Astrotrac, which I borrowed from a friend before making the jump and buy one. And I must say that I'm quite amazed by its tracking capabilities, even without an autoguider. I know that the lens I used has only 85mm of focal length, but I only got a 5 pixels drift during 45 minutes of imaging : that's quite impressive :)

Enough chitchat, here are the images :

5DmkII, Astrotrac, 85mm f/4.0, ISO 800, 14 x 60 seconds exposures, 15 darks, 50 bias, no flats, PixInsight for everything except the colors/saturation.

8620514905_8bd56cb524_b.jpg

From the Southern Cross to Eta Carina

5DmkII, Astrotrac, 85mm f/2.8, ISO 800, 9 x 60 seconds exposures, 15 darks, 50 bias, no flats, PixInsight for everything except the colors/saturation.

8620531941_dce40050b9_b.jpg

Pipe, Trifid and Lagon nebulas, with some Barnard

5DmkII, Astrotrac, 85mm f/2.8, ISO 800, 30 x 60 seconds exposures, 15 darks, 50 bias, no flats, PixInsight for everything except the colors/saturation.

8621629586_1dc1b3cd9c_b.jpg

Rho Ophiuchi

8620660111_dcb4655967_b.jpg

A mosaic of the last two images

Click on the pictures for a larger version ;)

I hope you liked them ! And if you're on the fence to buy an Astrotrac, just do it, it's an excellent piece of gear.

Clear Skies :)

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First try!!!!! These are astonishing photos. Very well done. the astrotrac is one of my favourite tools. A really well thought out bit of equipment.

Excellent pics - keep 'em coming :laugh:

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Stunning shots. Just got an astrotrac myself and Im very impressed with it. My only niggle at the moment is trying to accurately polar align.

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Wow and what an excellent first set of images, no wonder you are chuffed to bits with the Astrotrac :). Really well processed and stitched together too :)

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First try!!!!! These are astonishing photos. Very well done. the astrotrac is one of my favourite tools. A really well thought out bit of equipment.

Excellent pics - keep 'em coming :laugh:

Thank you Trev :) Yes the Astrotrac is really a great alternative to small german mounts. I really wouldn't want to setup the Losmandy Titan and the C14 every day, haha

Stunning shots. Just got an astrotrac myself and Im very impressed with it. My only niggle at the moment is trying to accurately polar align.

Thank you Lee. To polar align it, I use a compass which got a dial that allow me to correct the magnetic deviation for the Celestrial South Pole ( like here ) and put it against the wedge at the rear, then I set my latitude ( 17°S in my location ). After that, I take short exposure on the DSLR ( 30-45 sec ) and see how the stars are drifting with BackyardEOS à 200% size. Knowing the orientation of the sensor, I know where to correct, doing minute adjustments, then taking another another shot and so on :) It takes about 5-10 minutes.

Wow and what an excellent first set of images, no wonder you are chuffed to bits with the Astrotrac :). Really well processed and stitched together too :)

Haha, thank you :D Indeed I'm really loving that piece of kit ! So easy to use compared to my normal astronomical setup ! At least I don't get flexures .... :D

Those are really impressive and beautiful images - off now to look up Astrotrac!

Thank you Steve :)

Awesome pics! The Astrotrac is on my wish list for April already :)

Hehe, I bet it is :D Don't forget to post your first shots !

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Now that is a clear justification for getting an Astrotrac if ever I saw one.. those are really well done.. fantastic

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First effort hey. It's gonna be interesting to see what you come up with after a bit of practice :).

Of course I'm sure the Tahitian skies don't help any ;).

Absolutley stunning and yes, I'm jealous.

Keep 'em coming

26" newt in your signature....I wouldn't mind having a look through that from your skies.....did I mention I'm jealous?

Edited by auspom

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like them? wow totally blown away by these!

Really does show just how many stars there are in the heavens

incredible!!!!

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Awesome pics! The Astrotrac is on my wish list for April already :)

If all goes well, then the order is being placed tomorrow! :D

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Oh dear! There's another bit of gear on my wish list! Great pictures!

Haha thank you :) Glad to have been of help. Your banker might disagree though :D

Now that is a clear justification for getting an Astrotrac if ever I saw one.. those are really well done.. fantastic

Thank you for the kind comment !

First effort hey. It's gonna be interesting to see what you come up with after a bit of practice :).

Of course I'm sure the Tahitian skies don't help any ;).

Absolutley stunning and yes, I'm jealous.

Keep 'em coming

26" newt in your signature....I wouldn't mind having a look through that from your skies.....did I mention I'm jealous?

Haha, yeah we got some great skies here, when it's not raining. And here's the newton .

like them? wow totally blown away by these!

Really does show just how many stars there are in the heavens

incredible!!!!

Thank you Yelsac

Absolutely brilliant!

Thank you !

Awesome images :)

Much appreciated !

If all goes well, then the order is being placed tomorrow! :D

Awesome news ! I hope you'll like it as much as I do, hehe

Another one from last night, still tweaking my processing with PixInsight to get the right balance. Close, but no cigar :

8633787014_4ea94ac2f0_b.jpg

Click for a bigger version.

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If all goes well, then the order is being placed tomorrow! :D

Order placed! Yay me! :D

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Wow they are amazing, I bet you haven't even heard of 'light pollution', we are all experts on that round here! :grin:

Edited by nightvision

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To polar align it, I use a compass which got a dial that allow me to correct the magnetic deviation for the Celestrial South Pole ( like here ) and put it against the wedge at the rear, then I set my latitude ( 17°S in my location ). After that, I take short exposure on the DSLR ( 30-45 sec ) and see how the stars are drifting with BackyardEOS à 200% size. Knowing the orientation of the sensor, I know where to correct, doing minute adjustments, then taking another another shot and so on :) It takes about 5-10 minutes.

if you're interested in a different way of doing polar alignment, check out my signature ;)

It's worth a try and it's really really accurate.

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if you're interested in a different way of doing polar alignment, check out my signature ;)

It's worth a try and it's really really accurate.

Not much use for us south of the equator though.

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And ... at last my Astrotrac arrives!

Now I need to sort out a decent Canon lens. The 85mm f2.8 you use - is that an L series?

I was looking at the 70-200mm F4 L series, slightly slower but still a decent lens ... I think :)

Edited by Crunchard

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wonderful I could sit and look at those images for hours thanks for sharing

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