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NGC 2264 Cone Nebula and Fox Fur


Barry-Wilson
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Following some great Cone's on the forum - popular at the moment!

A fascinating region full of textural intracacies . . . I love the Fox Fur and the Baby Q's optics have performed well with the detail both in this feature and in the dark obscuring dust of the "cone" feature itself.

Unfortunatley I lost some height to the frame after an SGP upgrade changed the 'synch' default and I neglected to re-set the function back to 'synch' and my frames lost a small amount of alignment after a meridian flip on my last night of capture; resulted in a larger crop on the bottom edge (doh! :help:). I'll process the Ha and post up another time.

I've taken 600s subs for the RGB frames and I've been pleased with the star saturation to their cores without any processing boost - a lesson learned there. Also has really hepled with the blue reflection nebula.  Some images on the web show this as much more extensive than I've shown here (can just discern a really faint trace extending into the Fox Fur at "5pm" bottom right of the nebula) although evident being picked up with the hot bright young blue stars as small halos.  Need more data and a really dark sky!  I think the image scale also helps as I have taken this at the scope's native FL for better resolution and framing.

I'm really pleased with the change in focuser to the 3" Feathertouch.  I'd like to find time and post up some images of the tube now - quite a difference and I no longer fret over the CAA rotator with its minor tilt inducing effect.  Watch this space . . .   Time to switch out scopes soon as another collaboration project is being hatched.

Details:

  • Takahashi FSQ85EDX at F5.3
  • Mount GM1000HPS
  • QSI 683wsg-8 with Astrodon 5nm Ha and RGB filters
  • 15 x 1800s Ha; 12 x 600s RG&B each; total integration 13.5hrs
  • Captured with the brilliant SGP and processed with PI.

Thanks for looking!

Cone Nebula HaRGB_enhance_SLight10.jpg

Barry

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I so rarely see this processed in a way which retains the prominence of the Christmas Tree but it's as clear as Santa on Christmas Eve night! I've often wondered why this target isn't framed so the tree points upwards? I could almost reach into this image and stroke it, it looks so furry. Love it!

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Looks great Barry, nice job on the nebulosity. The only very minor thing I can find after a bit of pixel peeping (that I would personally try to tackle),  is the darker halos around some of the blue stars (just tighten them up a wee bit). No biggie, as it doesnt really detract from the overall quality of the image - which is splendid.

Edit: I see you also ran into some alignment issues after a flip... youre not the only one mate. Its an issue I raised a while ago, but no-one really got to the bottom of it :icon_scratch:

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55 minutes ago, laser_jock99 said:

Great image & detail. One of my favourite winter targets.

Thank you - there is plenty to hold your interest with this target I agree.

 

41 minutes ago, JohnC64 said:

Cracking image there Barry with beautiful subtle detail when zoomed in close.

John

Cheers John.

39 minutes ago, swag72 said:

Very delicately processed Barry - Very nice!

I must be able to tempt you into doing more RGB imaging . . . surely :icon_biggrin:.  Cheers Sara.

25 minutes ago, Filroden said:

I so rarely see this processed in a way which retains the prominence of the Christmas Tree but it's as clear as Santa on Christmas Eve night! I've often wondered why this target isn't framed so the tree points upwards? I could almost reach into this image and stroke it, it looks so furry. Love it!

I was really satisfied with the texture of the resultant HaRGB (plus with a Ha luminance blend) - the Ha data is very strong and helps significantly to develop the rich and deep colour.

13 minutes ago, Davey-T said:

Excellent image Barry, just spent a while browsing round the full size, lovely stars.

Dave

I'm very pleased with the stars myself.  It really has to be a moonless night for 600s RGB subs, but such depth of colour to the stars naturally arose when combining.  I do also run the Repaired HSV Separation script and then recombine the HSV channels and this does a great job of repairing the saturated pixels in the cores.

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4 minutes ago, Uranium235 said:

Looks great Barry, nice job on the nebulosity. The only very minor thing I can find after a bit of pixel peeping (that I would personally try to tackle),  is the darker halos around some of the blue stars (just tighten them up a wee bit). No biggie, as it doesnt really detract from the overall quality of the image - which is splendid.

Edit: I see you also ran into some alignment issues after a flip... youre not the only one mate. Its an issue I raised a while ago, but no-one really got to the bottom of it :icon_scratch:

Thanks a lot Rob.

For my 10 Micron mount, if I keep the selection to 'Synch' and make sure my mount driver is switched to 'Synch Refines OFF', ie synchs just align the model, centering works without a hitch (given I only have to centre a few pixels due to the general pointing accuracy).  I never thought that after the upgrade to the latest beta the selection in the Equipment Profile would change - it's my fault I should have checked as it had switched to 'Target Offset', the pointing correction algorithm the SGP developers have formulated to deal with the AP, Celestron and Bisque mounts.

I tried a few times to reduce and deal with the halos in the Blue channel - 600s must have really been on the limit at F5.3 for the Blue filter.  But I struggled to match the relative luminosities between channels.  Many of the web images show prominent halos in the Cone cluster, however I do agree that there are some lurking outside across the frame.  Other masks and techniques I used could desaturate the blue halos but then left a flat dull grey . . . perhaps I should have resorted to the Clone Stamp as I couldn't coax any red into the halo.  There is also the Star Halo Reducer script but I have yet to really master this and produce repeatable results.  When I get it to work it always feels like a fluke.  More time to practise I guess :happy6:!

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13 hours ago, PatrickGilliland said:

Nicely done Barry - subtle with detail (must master that one day!) I like, representative of the target without being forceful in anyway.

Paddy

Cheers Paddy.

12 hours ago, Mr Bergman said:

Agree with others; nice subtle processing. 

 

Erik

Thanks Erik.

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