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I'm new to the astrophotography hobby. I have experience with astronomy. I am struggling to make decent deep sky images (other than M42). The images don't seem to have much definition or brightness despite a decent overall exposure time. See the below images. I have seen on this forum that people are able to take awesome images of the below objects with my same setup. Is anyone able to tell me if I am missing something, please? Do I need even more exposure time?
I use a Celestron 6SE with unmodified Canon 600D. It has a goto alt az, no EQ. I use a bahtinov mask to focus. Both images were taken with the native focal length of 1500mm, no filters or eyepieces.
The image of the Triangulum Galaxy is 180 x 15sec ISO800 images. The Crab Neb is 250 x 15sec ISO800 images. Both images had their appropriate flats, darks and biases (30 of each). I use SIRIL to stack the images, which I have had good success with M42 before (see below).
Any advice would be appreciated!
In what was my final image with the Optolong L-eXtreme filter before I had to send it back to FLO, I turned it over to Cassiopeia. I knew that the Lobster Claw nebula was hiding there somewhere by using Telescopius and framing it that way (since it doesn't show in Stellarium). I realised that with the field of view achieved by the 80ED, reducer and 071mc Pro I could fit no less than 4, possibly 5 or even 6 DSOs in one frame. I love this part of the night sky.
The final image is composed of 31 x 300 second exposures, gain 95 at -5c. I ended up using the wrong dark frames by accident to calibrate it, and in all honesty I was too lazy to go shoot the right dark frames and re-edit it. So I just cropped out any nasty parts and edited it as normal. Not great practice I know but I really didn't get enough time with this target anyway.
Either way I'm sharing the result and I hope you enjoy it!
Clear skies all, keep looking up & keep them cameras clicking
Date taken: 21 and 23 March 2020. Camera: Astro-Modified Canon 600D. Telescope: SW Esprit 100 with Field Flattener and Baader U-HCS filter. Mount: AZ-AQ6 mount Image: 60 light subs (3 minute with 15 sec interval) with master dark, Flat and bias each made from 80 subs. Comments: The Pinwheel Galaxy is a favourite goto object for me. There is good detail here but not quite beating my image obtained in Salisbury a few years ago. There is no substitute for a dark sky. The larger FoV of the Esprit 100 does capture the smaller galaxies in the background well though. I may try to add more subs to this one.