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MikeODay

The Jewel Box Cluster in the Crux Constellation ( NGC 4755 )

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The Jewel Box ( NGC 4755 ) by Mike O'Day ( 500px.com/mikeoday )

This is a re-processed version of an old capture of mine taken last year when I was a two day old baby astrophotographer. Back then I was only just learing how to polar align my scope on its tripod and auto-guiding was a distant goal. This is a stack of 15 x 30sec images from my unmodified Nikon D300 ( I now use an unmodified D5300 as it is lighter and causes less flex in the focuser ).

Description:

The Jewel Box Cluster in the Crux Constellation ( NGC 4755 ) by Mike O'Day ( 500px.com/MikeODay )

Viewed through a telsecope, John Herschel described the Jewel Box Cluster as "a casket of varioulsy coloured precious stones" - hence the name. The Jewel Box, visible only from the Southern Hemisphere and appearing as a bright fuzzy star to the naked eye, is a cluster of around 100 ( mostly blue giant ) stars approximately 7000 light years from Earth.

Links:

500px.com/MikeODay

photo.net/photos/MikeODay

Details:

NGC 4755 - RA 12h 54.5m, Dec -60deg 26'.

Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian.

Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount.

Unguided.

Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector.

Nikon D300 (unmodified).

Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90.

Combination of 15 images 30 sec @ ISO800.

Registax & Photoshop

24 April 2014 (re-processed Nov 2015)

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Lovely shot of a great object. I have only ever seen it through fairly cheap 15x70 bins, but even then it is great.

Thanks Michael, much appreciated.

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Another great image... You almost captured the look and feel of it through the eyepiece... I say almost because no photo beats the view of a number of objects through the eye piece... The jewel box being one of them... Awesome image tho....

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Another great image... You almost captured the look and feel of it through the eyepiece... I say almost because no photo beats the view of a number of objects through the eye piece... The jewel box being one of them... Awesome image tho....

Thanks for your kind words. Although I have take your word for how it looks through an eyepiece - soon after I set up my Newtonian scope I rotated the tube so that the focuser was on the underside ( when pointing at the pole ) to better balance the camera, etc. Since then I have not looked through an eyepiece due to the mostly awkward shapes and angles I would need to contort into in order to see down the eyepiece!

Cheers

Mike

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Spectacular image. Always nice to see the jewels of the Southern sky.

Thanks, much appreciated.

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I often say that the hardest things to get right in deep sky imaging are the background sky and the stars. Here we have an object lesson in what they should look like, glittering, small, tight, colourful stars and a nicely judged neutral, matt background sky. Glossy backgrounds just look artificial.

This is one of the best cluster images I remember seeing.

Olly

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I often say that the hardest things to get right in deep sky imaging are the background sky and the stars. Here we have an object lesson in what they should look like, glittering, small, tight, colourful stars and a nicely judged neutral, matt background sky. Glossy backgrounds just look artificial.

This is one of the best cluster images I remember seeing.

Olly

Thank you very much for your kind words. The challenge you mention is one that I constantly struggle with. I am pleased that you think I got it right. Much appreciated.

Cheers

Mike

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