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themaninthesuitcase

M42 (first ever DSO image)

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Had my first success imaging on Monday having had 2 quite huge failures with my first efforts.  After actually managing to get polar aligned (compass and a boat level did 99% of the job) I made a run on M45.  Whilst this came out pretty lousy it was goo practice for my intended target came out, M45.  


Sadly I have had to throw away about half the data as the tree I thought I'd clear got in the way for the middle stint.  This weekend it will meet a saw.


So this is 31x (of 60) 30s (need to get an intervalometer or finish my Arduino controller) ISO1600 (see previous) subs with 19 darks.  Once I was done I left the scope, mount and camera to last so I could leave it running off darks. Was this a good plan?  No bias or flats yet as I want to get the basics down a bit more first.


11330077994_0e97164cc8_c.jpg



Processing was based roughly on making every photon count, and was my first ever go so it could be better but I also know more longer subs would help massively here. 


Thanks for reading my twaddle, it's not the best image I know but I am actually rather proud that I managed this much!

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I would be over the moon with this, especially as it's a first attempt, this looks really 3D and i love the starfield itself.

very very nice!

Neil.

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WOW! my first attempt at imaging last week look like crayon scribbles you did an awesome job.

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Excellent first effort.

Bias frames are easy - set your camera to shortest exposure length and keep the cover on the lens (or don't put the lens on).  Use the same ISO as for your imaging (1600 in this case).  Run off 50 shots and add them into the DSS mix.  You can keep the master and just add that each time, which will save a little processing time.  Just remember that you will need to take another batch if you use a different ISO.

Flats, on the other hand, ...

HTH

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Good start.......first time on M42 I had a tree as well.......it paid the price. :grin:

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Thanks for your comments everyone, nice to know I did something right!

What scope did you use?

Neil.

Skywatcher 200P-DS with the matched Coma Corrector. I also haven't messed with the collimation yet as it seems close enough for now and didn't fancy making it worse while I work through the learning curve.

Camera was a Nikon D7000.

This was all mounted on a tuned EQ6 I picked up used on Astro Buy and Sell.

No guiding, I tried to see if I could use my Xbox camera but it's just not sensitive enough I don't think, I need to read the the massive thread to see if there's some settings I can steal or something.

Focus was done by hand using a DIY bahtinov mask.

Excellent first effort.

Bias frames are easy - set your camera to shortest exposure length and keep the cover on the lens (or don't put the lens on).  Use the same ISO as for your imaging (1600 in this case).  Run off 50 shots and add them into the DSS mix.  You can keep the master and just add that each time, which will save a little processing time.  Just remember that you will need to take another batch if you use a different ISO.

Flats, on the other hand, ...

HTH

I didn't bother with bias as I havnen't bothered with flats.  The darks have the bias noise in them so it will remove it from the lights anyway.  I looked at the DSS proccess diagram (http://deepskystacker.free.fr/english/theory.htm#CalibrationProcess) It looks like it creates a master bias then removes that from everything so all it would have done is added time to the process.

Flats, I have no idea, I will start worrying about that after guiding.  Maybe one of those EL panels but it would need to be bigger than A4, which I learnt trying to print the bahtinov mask template.

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Excellent and really well focused, with Trapezium detail showing. I doubt that the missing subs would have made a huge difference. What you really need, in order to reach out into the fainter stuff, is longer ones.

There is a little vignetting which flats would address, but you could try DBE if you have Pixinsight or Grandient Xterminator, a Ps plugin by Russ Croman. Pixinsight's DBE is the software flattener to die for.

I think your green channel is a tad high, but not by much. Again Pixinsight has a green noise remover (SCNR) but there's a freebie called Hasta La Vista Green on the Deep Sky Colors website. Green is the root of all evil in AP!!!

Olly

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Excellent and really well focused, with Trapezium detail showing. I doubt that the missing subs would have made a huge difference. What you really need, in order to reach out into the fainter stuff, is longer ones.

There is a little vignetting which flats would address, but you could try DBE if you have Pixinsight or Grandient Xterminator, a Ps plugin by Russ Croman. Pixinsight's DBE is the software flattener to die for.

I think your green channel is a tad high, but not by much. Again Pixinsight has a green noise remover (SCNR) but there's a freebie called Hasta La Vista Green on the Deep Sky Colors website. Green is the root of all evil in AP!!!

Olly

Thanks Olly.  I did mess with the white balance a bit before final export, I've attached one below without that change which did add a bit of green and some yellow.  Is that any better?

The vignette did stand out but flats will come with time and when I have something big enough to light the whole 200mm.  Could this also be down to collimation at all? I haven't messed with this yet as it seems reasonably close and I have enough to learn with out throwing more into the pot.

I have nearly finished my bulb controller so will try for a 1min exposure next time it stops raining, still at 1600ISO.  Lowering that will have to wait until I can guide to make a 2 min + exposure.

post-26671-0-19074200-1387225698_thumb.j

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Well if you did ever work for MI6 I am glad you never had to avail yourself of their suicide sports bags.

;-)

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