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I was out recently in what felt like the first clear sky in years and got ~109 min of data on M31, minus 76 frames due to a 12mph wind, which left me with 69 min of data (each shot is 45 sec with ISO 200 tracked with skywatcher star adventurer). As mentioned in the title I captured all these images in a bortal 8 location, used an unmodified canon eos 400d and the skywatcher 75ed as the scope (with a flattener). I've attached my edit (warning: it is not great at all + slightly overedited to see what details are even there), and to be my surprise it looked very similar to an image of M31 with only 20 min of data which i captured a month earlier (both of which i used DSS and photoshop for). Now this may well have something to do with the way i edited it in photoshop or a different setting in DSS or just the fact that 49 more data doesnt make much of a difference considering im in a bortal 8 location, maybe you guys could help on that. I've attached the link to the original files (in the folder called 18.2.2021) as well as the stacked image from DSS (https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/12NT4TmLCXvTfOXNPE_l8UWPRpgO2VjLe?usp=sharing). I didnt capture any flat images but have dark and bias frames, all in their correpsonding folders in the attached link. It would be greatly appreciated if you guys could see if there is more data in this then i have managed to 'extract' using photoshop. (If you use different software and try and edit these files please tell me what you used) If there isn't then maybe do you guys have any images of M31 (or similar) from very light polluted skies that you could share here? (If so i would if you could share the full exposure time and gear that would be great)
So, although I had some issues with my auto guiding (which I found out afterwards) I did manage to get 9x180s exposures and 5 darks of Andromeda and give both stacking (using DSS) and processing (using GIMP).
My first attempted DSO....
I am pretty sure that people could get far more information out of the TIFF file from the stack.
Hopefully I will get another clear night soon. I am in a heavily light polluted area so I do have a clip in filter on my DSLR which I think took a lot away.
More practise needed!
Having had to move to an apartment where I could not use my CPC 1100, I decided that I have to see what I could do with my NexStar SLT 102 (alt-az achromatic 102mm f6.47 refractor). Setting up on my narrow balcony was challenging and the altitude bearing was so loose that it almost moved from the weight of the Canon 700D. I could not see M31 in the estimated 3.5 magnitude sky so I did a two star alignment and used the live-view to focus on a bright star. I then took a 15 second exposure after slewing to M31 which allowed me to see that I had it in the field of view. After a few more 15 second exposures and playing with the motion controls I managed to get it centered. The resulting picture is from 39 subs of 30 seconds at ISO 1600, 9 flats. The images were stacked and stretched with Siril and then I played with the curves on Gimp, cropped and scaled. Not too unhappy.