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HiloDon

More Ultrastar C Results

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Hi All,

I had a chance to use the Ultrastar color camera more the last two nights and am starting to believe that it is a viable camera for outreach.  I think it works best with Hyperstar.  These results were using it with a C14 and Hyperstar giving a 685mm FL at F1.9.  The first subject is the Running Man Nebula and I show a single frame, then a three stack image and a six stack image.  I follow up with the Horsehead and the Flame Nebulae.  I was surprised to see that the audience recognized the quality and detail of the objects.  A single image is good enough to show as a continuos near live image.  Many visitors asked that question and are impressed that it is live and not just a picture.  I am impressed by the fact that I can now see detail that I have never seen before, and the speed is not much slower than a Lodestar.  The color with the RGB sensor is much better as well.

I would appreciate any feedback.

Don

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Awesome images, Don. There is a definite warmth present in addition to the detail. I think you have a killer setup there!

Reggie

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That's really impressive Don, great detail and colours. The C14 plus Hyperstar clearly works well. You previously had concerns over the Ultrastar C's capability on fainter objects, are you now happy with this? How do you think it would work with a C8 and Hyperstar for DSOs espcially with the signficiantly different image scale compared to the Lodestar at F4.5?

Rob

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Great pics, Don. I can understand why the public at the Mauna Kea visitor center would be impressed seeing this live! Look forward to seeing more.

Errol

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Thanks, all, for the comments and likes.

Rob, I think all the HS configurations will work well, but I, too, have concerns about getting the right image scale. The longest focal length is the C14 at about 685. I just ordered a new Celestron 6se and picked up a used HS. The FL is 290mm. Great for wider field things but smaller objects will not be as good. For example, I tried the Crab last night and it was just too small to get much detail.

I did originally have concerns about this camera from some initial tests with my M8, but these results have me in astronomy heaven. I think like all cameras and setups, it isn't going to work for everything.

Don

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Very impressive. The brown dust on the Ruuning Man is so clearly defined. The C14 HS + US is a fantastic setup. Your dark skies no doubt also help.

My experience with the 825 color sensor using my C8 at f3.7 to f4 from my red zone has not been as good.... much slower acquisition speed and issues with color balance. I guess I am used to the acquisition speed of my Lodestars and ASI224. In my view this is a sensor very well suited to AP as the output is overall higher quality. To use it for EAA you need to be at f2.

I do absolutely agree that the 825C sensors will not be suitable for every object. I think it is best for big bright nebulae.

(Edit: Just to add....The mono version actually is much faster and very well suited for EAA both with and without binning. I have used it at f6 with x2 binning to go really deep. With x2 binning it is more sensitive than the X2)

Edited by Astrojedi
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Hi Don

Feedback? I'm on the next plane to Hawaii!! Seriously, these are great images. Hard to believe the first is just a single 30s shot. Looking forward to seeing some more.

Best

Martin

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Thanks, Hiten.

I agree with your assessment. The HS setup and dark skies make the Ultrastar C a viable EAA cam, but I still believe that the Lodestar is the best all around EAA cam whether you have dark or light polluted skies. I always recommend it to those looking for the simplest way to view both bright and dim DSO's. I still use it for outreach and it's speed makes it seem like real time. Some of the recent posts here by Rob and Adam show the potential of the LS. Martin always pushes the envelop of EAA with his fantastic really deep DSO's, and Nytecam shows what can be done in LP skies.

How do you do the binning with your Ultrastar mono? I don't think Paul has added that to SLL yet.

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Aloha Martin,

It would be great to have you here. Just let me know when you plan on coming. Your knowledge about the universe would be a big hit. We can have you do the sky tour, only we'll call it Martin's really deep deep sky tour.

Don

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(Edit: Just to add....The mono version actually is much faster and very well suited for EAA both with and without binning. I have used it at f6 with x2 binning to go really deep. With x2 binning it is more sensitive than the X2)

Hiten, how do these binned 825 images compare to the LodeStar X2 at it's normal 1x1 bin?

Don

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Don,

The 825 x2 binned is a little more sensitive than the X2. I have not done any measurements at the same focal length but visually I can see more faint detail. I primarily use it at longer focal lengths as the nearly 13 micron pixel size/sampling is perfect to hunt out faint galaxies.

Hiten

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Wow! My jaw dropped with those captures! Stunning to say the least!!  :icon_biggrin:

I didn't win the lottery last night, otherwise I would have also been on the next plane to Hawaii!

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Hi Don

Feedback? I'm on the next plane to Hawaii!! Seriously, these are great images. Hard to believe the first is just a single 30s shot. Looking forward to seeing some more.

Best

Martin

Martin,

Hope you are carrying a scope with you. We do an annual vacation to Hawaii and couple of summers ago I had the most incredible observing night on the Big Island. After the family fell asleep I setup my AT72ED on a manual Alt Az mount on the beach. A brief shower had cleared the air and I think the NELM was around 6 or 6.5. I cruised the star fields of the milky way and was able to observe all the bright nebulae. It is amazing how much you can see in a small scope given dark skies and good seeing. Just an incredible experience.

Hiten

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Don,

Those are awesome results. The richness of the color is super. You are really tempting me to get an OSC camera to play with. Of course, your results also confirm that the rules for EAA are no different than for visual observing- there's no substitute for aperture!

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Marvellous results Don - the Ultrastar+ Hyperstar are a perfect match - well done :-) Do I assume the flare is caused by the USB cable across the scope corrector?

Nyte

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Thanks, Nytecam.

I'm sure that's what the diffraction spikes are from. I read someplace that you get double the number of spikes from the interfering object. Maybe SX can design a wireless Ultrastar in it's next version.

Don

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Thanks, Nytecam.

I'm sure that's what the diffraction spikes are from. I read someplace that you get double the number of spikes from the interfering object. Maybe SX can design a wireless Ultrastar in it's next version.

Don

I was thinking the same thing. But you will still need to power it somehow. Putting a battery in the camera will likely make it too heavy for the Hyperstar. Wireless power?

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I was thinking the same thing. But you will still need to power it somehow. Putting a battery in the camera will likely make it too heavy for the Hyperstar. Wireless power?

Hiten,

Some hang DSLRs off the HS. Given the light weight of an LS or US, I don't think it would be too heavy with a small battery. They can still keep the 1.25" cylinder shape and extend the length a bit. I think the wireless EAA cams will be coming some day. Aren't there some wireless DSLRs now? The problem may be data speed. I tried using a wireless USB setup with LL and it had speed problems over about 20 ft.

Don

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Great shooting there, Don! You've got the touch!

I look foreward to your next installments,

Dave (stuck in the rain & snow)

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Great shooting there, Don! You've got the touch!

I look foreward to your next installments,

Dave (stuck in the rain & snow)

Thanks, Dave.

Being originally from Chicago, I miss that cold and snow. My wife told me I shouldn't post things when I've been drinking.

Don

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