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PIX in Sight or Nebulosity?


baggywrinkle
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No knowledge of Nebulosity but having used Pixinsight for just about everything for a year with just finishing touches in Photoshop (owing to very basic PS skills) I got @steppenwolf's Dark Art or Magic Bullet book just before Xmas and am now learning PS.  Currently hooked on the "magic" that is possible with layer masks and so reprocessing everything I've done over the last 6 months! I calibrate, stack and do initial stretch in PI, then do the rest of the processing using a combination of the two packages.  A lot still to learn about both but with my current knowledge it seems to me that using the two packages together is a lot more powerful than just using one.

Dave

 

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APP is a lot easier to use than Pixinsight and gives amazing results.  If you do mosaics then again APP wins hands down.

Pixinsight gives you more fine control and has a tool for every situation.

It comes down to what feels best.  You can try them both for free.

Nebulosity does stacking pretty well but is not in the same league as the other two.

Edited by wornish
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Nebulosity, I find, is good for acquistisition (my mount doesn't need a meridian flip) but for processing it's very basic.  I used it to start with, but there a several fundamental things it cannot do, like masking or custom curves, etc.  Moved on to PI which, as mentioned before, has a tool for many things, but you don't have to use all of them.

However, in the end, you are likely to want to use several different packages,  each having their own strengths.  The cost is negligible compared to acquisition hardware, and it's silly to "spoil the ship for a ha'porth of tar."

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I've used Pixinsight and Nebulosity at various stages in my "AP career" and I think you're comparing Apples with Pears here.

Nebulosity is primarily a good value and fairly simple acquisition program with some good but fairly basic calibration routines. When I used Nebulosity, it was with a DSLR and I used to acquire, calibrate and post process my images before progressing into Photoshop for final adjustments.

Pixinsight has no acquisition capability and is a very comprehensive and customisable calibration and processing program. I now use Sequence Generator Pro for image acquisition  having migrated to a mono CCD camera and all that that entails. After I've acquired the images with SGPro, I work almost entirely in Pixinsight although  I might still do a few final tweeks in Photoshop.

I've got no experience of APP, so can't comment on it (although it does seem to get a good press), but I don't think it'll do acquisition, so I think your choice is Nebulosity if you want to keep it all fairly simple, or PI/APP PLUS acquisition software like SGP or Maxim if you want to future proof yourself.

Steve

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14 hours ago, baggywrinkle said:

I looked at the PI site and it says 230€ for a commercial licence. Does that apply to all buyers?

Yes, all buyers are covered. All updates are free once you've paid your dues.

PI seemed expensive to me at the time but I use it everytime I image for preprocessing, noise reduction and the initial stretch to non-linear. I've recently started using APP for mosaics and it is a delight to use and so much easier than PI for this particular aspect of imaging. Once I'm done in PI I go straight to PS for all colour manipulation and image finishing.

Adrian

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  • 4 weeks later...
28 minutes ago, Ullomat said:

Hi all,

never heard of APP. Do you have a link for me?

Many thanks an cs,

Uli

https://www.astropixelprocessor.com/ 

I find this an excellent program for calibrating, integrating etc and for mosaics it is brilliant. I also use it for LP removal and merging the channels of my image.... from there I go to Photoshop as while APP does processing it uses a DDP (Digital dynamics processor)  format unlike what I am used to 

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I've used Maxim for acquisition, calibration and stacking for years.  It is very good but extremely expensive.  I have installed SGP on my new lap top for use away from my observatory and find it excellent and would recommend it without hesitation.

For calibration and stacking I've used ImagesPlus, Maxim, CCDStack, PI and am currently getting to grips with APP.  Maxim is great and I haven't been able to distinguish between the end results compared with PI or CCDStack.  I suspect APP will show it's worth when it comes to complicated stacks with subs of differing exp times and sky conditions.

For processing I mainly use PS but also use PI.  It's a bit like asking which is the better communication tool, English or French!  Both do an excellent job but are very different and it isn't easy to get to grips with one when you have been brought up using the other.  I do like the fact that PI is a one time purchase which includes on going updates.  As an example DBE is a fantastic gradient removal tool but is rather tedious and time consuming to use.  PS doesn't have decent gradient removal, you have to buy a plugin called gradient exterminator.  It struggles when there is nebulosity across most of the image but 90% of occasions it is every bit as good as DBE in a fraction of the time.

Edited by MartinB
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2 hours ago, swag72 said:

https://www.astropixelprocessor.com/ 

I find this an excellent program for calibrating, integrating etc and for mosaics it is brilliant. I also use it for LP removal and merging the channels of my image.... from there I go to Photoshop as while APP does processing it uses a DDP (Digital dynamics processor)  format unlike what I am used to 

Thanks!

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Both: nebulosity to capture and pixinsight for processing.

Nebulosity is really simple to use, to set up and easily integrated with other (it works fine with plate solving astrotortilla, as well as for dithering etc). Sequences can be built easily (not that user friendly but once you have save few sets scripts then you are ready to go! And I remember to have seen a script generator for it somewhere). Its focusing function is wonderful, after a while, it will just take a minute and less. I did try some other capture program, but always came back to Nebulosity. I never had a bug with it (I am on 4.1 since very long and run win10 all up to date). I used its calib/stack/processing function and it was a good starting point to learn processing images before going into PI.

For processing today, I do it all in PI. Long learning curve but follow some youtube starting tutorial and take your time to learn it (... you will never learn it all  I think... years I am using it and continue to learn few things everytime I am running into a new work!)

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As @Erquy says Neb 4 is a really nice, easy to use package and is great for image capture. I am moving over to SGPro I think but still fire yo Neb 4 even if it’s just to focus. 

Mots good for basic processing as well - can get pleasing results very quickly. 

This is the script generator I think that’s mentioned. 

Pixinsight is a different kettle of fish but one that I’m tackling as it gives far more control over the processing workflow. 

Watch this video for a crash course in Neb. Ok it’s an earlier version but it’s still applicable to Neb 4. 

 

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