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JGM1971

The "No EQ" DSO Challenge!

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Just 30 minutes  of 12 second exposures  on this. 9.25 nexstar evolution  and asi294mc.  Snapseed and photoshop  Express.  To my gear out to a dark site with just eyepieces  recently... wow, I had no idea I'd see much detail on andromeda.  Pleadies was pretty impressive  too.

Edited by Manners2020
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11 hours ago, Manners2020 said:

Just 30 minutes  of 12 second exposures  on this. 9.25 nexstar evolution  and asi294mc.  Snapseed and photoshop  Express.  To my gear out to a dark site with just eyepieces  recently... wow, I had no idea I'd see much detail on andromeda.  Pleadies was pretty impressive  too.

There's plenty going on in those images, the dust lanes are clearly revealed. A dark site does make all the difference.

I know this might sound critical, but it's not meant to be, but with a colour astro camera, where is the colour? I'm sure it's in there, it just needs to be brought out. I've used neither Snapspeed nor Photoshop Express and I don't know whether they're up to the job in hand. I wonder what you'd get with more dedicated astro processing tools, like Startools (about the cheapest) which I've found to do well bringing out colour. What are you using to stack with? I see a satellite trail which could easily be removed in stacking using the Kappa-Sigma clipping option in DSS.

Ian

Edit. Ah, just read your posts of 21st Nov.

Edited by The Admiral
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I didn't  take that as criticism but I would have taken criticism  on here like it was meant to be taken anyway.  I've only just noticed that sattelite  trail myself actually.  The time I have right now for this is precious  little. I've  half heartedly tried  stepping my processing  game up a few times but cant get into it. When my boys a bit older is the time I think I can seriously  try stepping my game up. I've just toned this image down a bit actually  and think I prefer this one.  Still lacking colour but a bit cleaner... thanks.

PSX_20191203_212545~2.jpg

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14 hours ago, Manners2020 said:

I've  half heartedly tried  stepping my processing  game up a few times but cant get into it. When my boys a bit older is the time I think I can seriously  try stepping my game up. I've just toned this image down a bit actually  and think I prefer this one.

If you have a youngster demanding all your energies I can well understand your dilemma :smile:. Getting into processing does demand a quiet time on your own, working through things. I am at the opposite end of the age spectrum, so I can be more selfish :wink2:.

To be honest I still prefer the first versions. There is a lot of dust swirling around M31 which is visible in your first versions but not your last one. I also like the feeling that all that dust is being lit from within by the bright core. But each to his own. The deeper you go with M31 the larger it gets, and the FoV of the SCT is quite narrow so you won't see it all.

I started imaging as much because it allows me to visualize what I can't see visually, which is really what it is all about. You've certainly achieved that.

Ian

Edited by The Admiral
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Thought I'd add my first stab at a DSO with my Skywatcher 130PDS on an AZ Synscan Goto mount, with a modded Canon EOS1000D.

40x25 seconds at ISO1600 stacked shots of the Pleiades, no flats/darks etc (as I say, it's my first), lights stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and then processed in Photoshop using a luminance layer to bring out the nebula and adjustment layers and blending modes to bring out the colours. I'm sure there's plenty wrong with it but I did a little dance when I saw the first shots appear on the screen.

pleiades2 cropped.jpg

Edited by BrendanC
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Posted (edited)

Thanks! Looking at it again I think I might have stretched it too far, so I've had another stab at it (I get the feeling this is yet another of those hobbies of mine where I never quite feel it's 'finished'...!) I've also decided to include the whole image because you get more of an idea of how far out the nebula reaches. I don't know how I managed to get it in portrait mode, but there you go, next time around I'll get it right! I'll also save the output in RAW file, for some reason I managed to save in JPG which will also have lost some detail. If you zoom in you'll notice that I don't have those much-coveted round stars, so I think maybe 25 seconds was also overcooking it. According to the NPF rule with my setup it should be around 7 seconds, so I knew 25 was pushing it but decided to go for it. Anyway, all good learning and hopefully I'll one day be able to achieve something remotely approaching the amazing images on this thread.

pleiades try 2.jpg

Edited by BrendanC

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, BrendanC said:

I'll also save the output in RAW file, for some reason I managed to save in JPG which will also have lost some detail.

Do you mean that you stacked the jpegs rather than the raws? If so, you are going to run into problems as jpegs are only 8 bit and fall apart when they are subjected to significant stretching. Jpegs will also have 'baked in' the correction curve, so stretching won't be using linear data.

But other than that I think I prefer your first attempt as it shows the nebulosity better, rather than just a 'glow'. But other's may take a different view; I like 'impact' :rolleyes:. I used 30s for my M45 with an effective 560mm FL. I'm usually a bit selective on the subs I use, discarding the ones which have visible streaking.

Ian

Edited by The Admiral

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Interesting, I didn't know that about JPGs, I thought they were just a compressed graphics format. I didn't intend to use JPG, I just hadn't set the camera up properly. Thanks for that. 

Also interesting that you prefer the previous version! It's so subjective. Anyway I'll leave it for now, I'm sure I'll come back to it in future. 

Thanks for the feedback. :)

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I got back into the hobby recently after having been away for a good 15 years or so (thanks to university, work, kids etc). I purchased a used 10in Skywatcher Dobsonian on a Goto upgrade mount, which I'm loving.

I was fully expecting to use the telescope for visual observing only, but then I found this thread. Reading on a few other forums, it seemed heavily discouraged to image with an Alt-az mount. I did get the sense that most detractors were long term, experienced APers.  Not liking to be told what can and can't be done, I decided to give it a shot. The first two pictures, M1 Crab Nebula and M37, are stacks of 10s subs, about 10 each, taken with my Galaxy S7 afocally. I impressed myself at the results I could get with this crude setup! Having caught the astrophotography bug, I busted out my old Canon 300d that was accumulating dust in my basement.

I had a go at M42 with my 300d. a mix of about 10x10s and 5x30s subs. I was a bit disappointing at the trailing, then again it was quite windy that night...

 

The last two images I caught Sunday night, a nice windless night. With my 300d I re-imaged M37, with about 10x20s subs.. I then got ambitions and shot NGC2683 with 10x20s subs. While I don't think my rig will produce award-winning pictures, I'm definitely enjoying this!

 

 

200050815_CrabNebula.jpg.d148b527a1b568846b9c8897a8dd5505.jpgm37.jpg.2236be59df59a6ac63f6d71168b0889d.jpgorion_2_1.thumb.jpg.88dad4562e65d8170767c683068ae438.jpgm37_Jan5th2020.thumb.jpg.697d2559a27c7f1f9f1d792f45fe5aba.jpgngc2683_2.thumb.jpg.d76f62fc0ee70961fb87faa9ad02e2cb.jpg

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38 minutes ago, Gaubachis said:

Not liking to be told what can and can't be done

That's the spirit! Nothing wrong with Alt-Az imaging, though it has to be said there are limitations, but within those you can get great results. And you've made a start in that direction, well done!

Ian

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That's a great start. If using DSS kappa sIgma clipping can help neaten stars to help which you might find useful but you'll really want 30+ subs but that will help you anyway to help see what you can get.

You've got a great advantage in the light bucket, I bet a cluster could come out well.

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Just been pointed to this thread after my first post with Alt Az imaging!

AMAZING images peeps! Looks like I have 145 pages of posts to look back on for inspiration and learning!

My post here....

 

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Second DSO, also my second attempt at M42. Nice clear night, a bit of wind (although the weather was fine). The very-much-photographed Orion Nebula M42 with a touch of the Running Man M43 above. 50 frames of 20 seconds each at ISO1600, stacked in DSS and then tweaked judiciously in Photoshop. I got nice colours out of M42 but couldn't seem to extract anything meaningful from the running man unfortunately. I've decided to add captions to photos because I feel like it.

 

m42 orion nobula stacked 7.jpg

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That's a good image though. Maybe the running man is smearing the clarity as it is nearer the edge, perhaps a mosaic might be worth trying.

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Thanks! Yes, I stretched that corner a bit more to try and get more running man, but I'm not sure it worked out. I might crop it and just include M42, or I might have another stab just at the running man and add it at a later date. Would be nice to get some colour information too.

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Betelgeuse. Canon 1100d unmodded and the Canon 85mm f1.8 lens at f4 and ISO 800  and 30 second exposures plus a flocked flower pot on the lens. I control the camera using my phone and DSLR Controller, there is a RDT in the camera hot shoe. My longer post is here link

58 lights, flats, dark flats bias and darks also used. I'm using DSS 4.2.3 ad the setting of No white balance processing. Processed in StarTools 1.6.682 and the colour matrix for the 1100d.  The image did drop into the light dome so had to use an aggressive wipe to remove the strong light gradient from the bottom 1/3.

Hopefully get outside again on Sunday it has been a long time since the last play.

443629044_Autosave001v3.thumb.jpg.dfd8ca56b3d03ed2a5fbcb16b9f85747.jpg

Edited by happy-kat

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A quick try at Andromeda last night. It looked like it was clearing nicely, but once set up and taking frames the moisture was building up very quickly on everything! Managed 20 X 30s exposures with a Canon 60D @ 200mm with a 75-300 kit lens before the lens started fogging up. Piggy backed into the Nexstar GOTO 130SLT. Also did 10 darks and 10 bias frames. 

Stacked in DSS and final edits in Affinity Photo (AF). I'm working my way around AF and trying out new ways of doing things; masks, levels etc. Quite happy with it and sure I can make it look better with some more editing practice.

305947802_20200117Andromedafirsts.thumb.jpg.e9136f0080577279b95d6aeefad977ed.jpg

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You've started to capture that nicely. That's a target to add more data if you can but might be tricky as you used a zoom lens to get the same zoom. You've no refraction spikes were you able to use it wide open?

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