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Sun in Whitelight 4th September 2016 08:00 BST.


Steve Ward

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A slightly better session today , small window of opportunity as I forgot to set an alarm but better seeing ... :happy11:

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And in answer to a few queries yesterday here are some subs  from today showing the range of quality I usually encounter when assessing a set , 15 frames from a set of 100 shot today , those on the left are the type I'll usually stack ( these are by no means as good as I capture some days) , those in the middle column are the sort that usually get put in the bin ( these were the kind I had to use yesterday ) and the right hand set are the kind that get slung out as completely unusable on even the worst days ... no point in doing anything with these , I'll either reshoot if the opportunity is there or I'll just put the day down as a 'bad'un' and sulk.  Not often that I get no frames to use luckily so Sulky Steve doesn't come out too often these days ... :happy8:

Click on the thumbnail below to see the full size version.

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1000D + Tal 100RS + 1.4x Barlow + ND3.8 + OIII.

1/200s @ ISO 100 , 43/300 , PIPP , AS!2 , Reg 5.1 , Gimp 2.8.

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5 minutes ago, laudropb said:

Very nice set Steve and thanks for the comparison of the subs. Very useful for those of us just starting out.

Here's a full size version to better see the difference , the pic I posted previously doesn't really show it being so small ... :icon_albino:

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Hi Mark , 

Better to shoot loads and cherry-pick the good'uns out to stack.

I generally shoot two or three sets of 100 frames on a 'decent' day , 400+ on a bad'un.

Better to use AuotoStakkert2 (AS!2) to combine the frames rather than PS , (or Registax if you want to faff around and get disheartened real quick)  it'll do a much better job.

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I have an OIII filter in the mix for increased contrast and detail  , this along with my various customised camera settings means a slower shutter speed is employed.

( It does much the same as a Baader Continuum but was already in the arsenal so saved me another £100 , a UHC does work quite well too by the way , both set around the green part of the spectrum)

I use the ND3.8 Imaging film which allows me to keep the shutter speed in the 'sensible' range . (ND5.0 precludes the use of the OIII with decent shutter speed)

That said I have shot down as low as 1/8s through clouds before now and still caught good detail , so the 1/1000s and higher 'rule' is complete bunkum ....

ISO needs to be as low as possible I find , I sometimes go up to ISO 200 when increasing the Barlow from 1.4x to 2.6x for closer views , again to keep the shutter speed up there. Using ISO 1600 would fill the image with noise and kill any detail captured , certainly in my set-up at least.

I have tried without the OIII and using higher shutter speeds but there are two major drawbacks , firstly at very high shutter speeds a gradient appears on the 1000D due to the way the shutter operates , (more noticeable on mine because I Barlow the disc to nearly fill the sensor) and secondly without the OIII or similar in the mix the very fine detail is just not there to be captured ( the tiniest of pores , penumbral structure etc just disappears ) no matter what custom settings are tweaked .

The last reason is why I still use the 1000D and nothing 'newer' , I 'upgraded' to an 1100D but Canon have messed with something either chip-wise or processor-wise and after a fortnight of extensive and very frustrating test shooting I could not get anywhere close to capturing the details that the 1000D did , I returned it to the supplier and actually tested another body in their carpark just to make sure it wasn't a rogue body , it wasn't it's an inherent thing ... , I came away with a couple of extra s/h 1000D's instead ... 

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