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Is the thrill in the chase?


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If I was in a position where it was my livelyhood at stake or I was trying to make a living from imaging then yes, I'd spend what is needed to get results every time. In much the same way that I buy the right tools to carry out my trade rather than cobbling together. 

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My enjoyment comes from getting results with a low end mount and not so good skys my images only have to please me. Alan

I couldn't think of a better title, and this post is purely out of interest so no offense is meant from a visual astronomer who knows about imaging only what he has picked up on the forum. I see many

Oh I know but a reliable and hassle-free setup was a serious consideration for me, pity it costs so much! If I pop me cloggs I hope my missus doesn't sell it for what I told her it cost... ChrisH

It's funny, I've looked at Olly's website and perhaps one day I could persuade my family to accept an astronomical holiday (I know there's loads more to do there, but they would still suspect my ulterior motives).

But although I'm sure I would be delighted to play with all Olly's fantastic gear, I would be most interested in setting up my own gear and picking getting advice and help to get the very best out of that!

Edited by Stub Mandrel
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that's a good question.

While I'd say I'm still very much in the beginner's camp, I do reckon I've served my apprenticeship well, having spent a couple of years battling with, coaxing, swearing at and pleading with rather substandard equipment in the form of a CG4 mount with after-market motors and an old Nikon D80.   Whilst the results may not have been great, I do think it's taught me a lot of good habits and insight that surely helps now I've got halfway decent kit.

Strange thing though, when I first got my modded 1100d and saw the first subs rolling in, that were clearly muuuch better than anything I'd had previously, I had a strange sense of disappointment, wondering if all along it was just about equipment after all and not technique.  Of course I've gotten over it now.

I enjoy all aspects of it, though I'd say for me it's all about the processing -

I view the mechanical capturing of an image as a careful setting up of a very delicate machine which is quite absorbing, and when you've kicked off the imaging run, can see the subs coming in, flat guiding graph and everything working sweetly it's a good feeling.  At the end of the day though, assuming everything goes right, then every imaging run is, and should be like, every other one.  And there is a part of me that wishes you could do DSO imaging in the daytime, I do like my bed...

Processing though I spend hours on and view it as a process of discovery and adventure to see how much you can find out and bring out in each different image.  I probably spend 2-3 weeks processing each image, an hour or so on the sofa after work each day with the laptop before I get moaned at too much, slowly tweaking the image as I go through my workflow until i end up with something I can be proud of.

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It's funny, I've looked at Olly's website and perhaps one day I could persuade my family to accept an astronomical holiday (I know there's loads more to do there, but they would still suspect my ulterior motives).

But although I'm sure I would be delighted to play with all Olly's fantastic gear, I would be most interested in setting up my own gear and picking getting advice and help to get the very best out of that!

You wouldn't be in a minority. We receive about equal numbers of people who are entirely self-propelled with their own kit, those who come to try to improve what they do with their own and those who come to use ours. I tend not to do this breakdown in front of Madame because my excuse for all the kit-buying is that it's 'for the business.' I know I can count on your discretion!  :icon_mrgreen:

Olly

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I'd be one of those who would bring my own kit Olly...knowing that it is my kit that I have cobbled together that produced the final cobbled together image.

I don't mind tinkering but some bits you just have to do when it is clear outside and unfortunately we don't get many nights per year where it is clear.

If everything just worked right with no issues it wouldn't feel like I achieved much..."even the cleaner could do it" so to speak.

I have mentioned it before, it is like a rite of passage, only once you have felt the pain you can press the button on a fully automated imaging rig...

But since it is your livelihood you need it to just work Olly...and I am sure you felt the pain in your early days...

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Brought some of my kit to Olly, but that was for observing. But then I was assigned to be chief Dob pilot for the night, so I brought my entire set of EPs (and bins, of course). Once I really get into DSO imaging, I may well go back to learn proper imaging.

Regarding the image processing: I very much like that, including writing code if I find existing solutions inadequate. My own aim is to automate as much as possible, remove manual interaction as far as I can. I would rather write code that automatically adjusts the processing as a function of local image content, than use manual selection of any kind.

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Thanks all for such great responses, really interesting and with some variation. Much as I suspected, going through the 'pain' of the initial learning curve seems to contribute a lot to the overall experience, and adds to the rewards when the images finally start flowing.

I also get why Olly and Sara just want things to work with no hassles, both for different reasons.

The only visual equivalent I can think of is that I'm glad I worked up to owning a large aperture scope as it allowed me to develop my observing skills along the way. I also find that at star parties I really just want to use my own scope and get the best out of it, rather than looking through too many others. I don't get much chance with my kit under dark skies so try to make the most of it when opportunities arise.

Thank you imagers for sharing your thoughts with a curious visual interloper [emoji3][emoji106][emoji106]

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I couldn't think of a better title, and this post is purely out of interest so no offense is meant from a visual astronomer who knows about imaging only what he has picked up on the forum.

I see many people struggling over a long period of time to put together the complex system required to produce the wonderful images we see on the forum, getting there sooner or later but often after quite a battle.

My question is simply this. If you could buy an off the shelf solution of the same quality and a similar price that just worked out of the box, would you do it? Or, is there a large amount of satisfaction to be gained by the fact that it was you that put everything together and made it work?

Is it all about the data, processing and the images, or is there also a lot of enjoyment had from the technical side?

Purely an open discussion thread on a rainy Friday, so....over to you [emoji3]

Yes.

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For me the thrill is in seeing my data turn into an image I'd feel happy to post here. The less fiddling around the better especially with our rubbish weather where every imaging hour is precious.

So, yes, an off-the-shelf imaging rig that just *works* would be very tempting but I cannot really justify it ATM so just bodge along with what I have.

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For me the thrill is in seeing my data turn into an image I'd feel happy to post here. The less fiddling around the better especially with our rubbish weather where every imaging hour is precious.

So, yes, an off-the-shelf imaging rig that just *works* would be very tempting but I cannot really justify it ATM so just bodge along with what I have.

I hope you'll tell me all about it if ever you find it! I've been looking earnestly for ten years...

:p lly

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I am early in my imaging, so in fact I love the whole learning process about the data gathering and all the equipment and getting things working for me. I am however getting to the point where I would just like the data without the failed subs. I do like processing more than gathering and find the messing around with FoV and targets along with processing is more fun than babysitting hiccuping guiding all night. When it works, it is immensely satisfying though :)

Would I buy a perfect working rig? Probably now if I had the funds, but when I started, no, glad with my choices!

Edited by MattJenko
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for me it is the journey, the chase as it were.  But what I have enjoyed in reading the replies (so far) is the ways of (all of us) being hunters and gatherers - how it is different and yet similar in that have different paths to a very similar goal.

michael

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