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Hello all. I’ve tried a few times in the last month to image Mars but have had very little success. Although a decent size, Mars is very blurry and wobbly. I am fairly new to the hobby, but I would say it appears to be poor seeing conditions.
I am using a Celestron 6SE and Canon 600D. I have tried 2x and 3x Barlow. I focus using a bahtinov mask (on stars). I used movie crop mode on various ISOs and exposures, stacking at least 3000 frames (keeping the best 1%, 2%, 5%, etc).
Is Mars too far away now? Or am I underestimating how rarely you get a night of good seeing? How do you find out when the best seeing will be?
Good day fellow gazers at the sky! I recently joined and i would just like to say how wonderful everyone is (a special shout out to George Gearless)!
Can anyone suggest a good reflector within my budget shown in the title? While i'm here i'd just like to say about the app, Nightshift. It is proffesional, clear and tellls you when to observe, and what you can see, for the next year! It also pinpoints your location exactly, so it is really accurate.https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.waddensky.nightshift. Anyway, that's me done! Thank you all so much for your time
I've just had a Canon EOS 250d modified by Juan, IR filter off and shim to restore focal plane. He previously did the same for a 100d which got me going in the hobby. Juan is willing and able to take on successive generations of camera. I prefer to rely on Juan's experience for this task, despite me being an optics specialist professionally. The cost of the camera and Juan's conversion service together are a bargain and I trust him with a new camera.
I like to use this type of imager over the specialist cameras because they are the result of Canon's massive R&D capability and bundle together all these functions: battery, an up to date sensor chip, the on-board software, on-board storage, built-in display, easy-fit Astronomik filter. In the case of the 250d, that very important tiltable display so you don't have to crawl around on the wet lawn to see it. The only thing they don't have is an easily-implemented thermo-electric cooling. But I've got a long way to go in astro-imaging before I care about noise that much (though I'd like to cool, and understand what can be achieved, I use stacking averaging in the meantime to go part way in that respect).
The dslr is my one imager for three rigs, the most notable being that it's lightweight enough to go on my Omegon clockwork mount.
On my heftier rig, I do have an Altair camera with a Sony back-lit chip but only use it for tracking with a wireless-controlled Stellarmate setup, having got fed up with all the cables and tablet pc with memory dangling off it.
I would like to share my fourth image.
With my "lucky week" of imaging, along with M33, I managed to finish also this project. This is my longest integration to date.
These are IC 405 and IC 410, also known as the Flaming Star Nebula and the Tadpole Nebula, respectively, taken over 7 nights, under my Bortle 5/6 home sky.
Total integration time: 18h 29m 00s.
Here are the acquisition details:
Mount: Sky-Watcher NEQ6 Pro
Telescope: Tecnosky 80/480 APO FPL53 Triplet OWL Series
Camera: D5300 astromodified
Reducer/flattener: Tecnosky 4 elements, 0.8x
Guide-scope: Artesky UltraGuide 60mm f/4
Guide-camera: ZWO ASI 224MC
2020/11/18: Number of subs/Exposure time: 41@240s + 1@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, no Moon
2020/11/21: Number of subs/Exposure time: 48@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, Moon 46% illuminated
2020/11/24: Number of subs/Exposure time: 48@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, Moon 75% illuminated
2020/12/07: Number of subs/Exposure time: 15@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, no Moon
2020/12/13: Number of subs/Exposure time: 22@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, no Moon
2021/01/10: Number of subs/Exposure time: 37@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, no Moon
2021/01/11: Number of subs/Exposure time: 18@300s. Notes: L-Pro filter, no Moon
Total exposure time: 66540s = 18h 29m 00s.
Pre and post-processing: PixInsight 1.8.8-7.
This image was particularly hard to process, since there are many bright stars and stretching the nebulosity while taming the stars was quite difficult. I am sure I didn't manage it as well as I would have liked.
Here's a link to the full resolution image: Flaming Star Nebula (IC 405) and Tadpole Nebula (IC 410)
Thanks for looking!