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First things first, apologies for posting this one out of season. A combination of no astro dark, crappy weather, and being busy at work has meant that there's no imaging getting done at all these days. So, i've had to turn to old data to re-process, and this data set was an obvious candidate as i was never happy with how it came out originally. And looking back on it now with fresh eyes, boy did it need it!
Nikon D5300, SW 80ED, HEQ5-Pro.
3 x 1200s, 2 x 1380s, and 4 x 1500s of Ha
9 x 1200s of Oiii.
11 x 480s with an IDAS-D1, for RGB stars only
7 Hrs 54 Mins in Total.
Stacked in APP and processed in PS.
Combined as SHO (using a 70/30 blend of Ha/Oiii for the Sii).
The main differences this time were, using Starnet++ to create the starless versions, using more Ha in the synthesized Sii (70% instead of 50% last time), but mostly the improvement has come from toning down the stretch a lot (ok, a heck of a lot!) before making the colour map for the tone-mapping. From then on it was immediately apparent that i'd made a massive boo-boo first time round 🙈
I've included a 1080p rotated crop too, as i quite liked the framing.
Feels like ages since i last did any NB imaging. I almost forgot how much i enjoy it! 🙂
And rather embarrassingly, here's the original. Try not to laugh too hard! 😂 😂 😂
Back in early Feb I tried imaging Markarian's Chain, but after 2 subs I encountered guiding issues (a first for me) so had to give up.
So just for kicks and giggles, I decided to process them! ?
So this is 2 x 10mins. With the D5300, 80ED and HEQ5-Pro. 'Stacked' (if it's even right to use that term!) in APP, and processed in PS. Then reduced to 75% for posting.
Why oh why oh why..... I honestly don't even know myself ?
I'm breaking the cardinal rule here of posting late at night, right after finishing PP, so let's see what sense the dawn brings! ?
I shot this in the early hrs of 29th of March. There was no moon present (i think!) and conditions were pretty good, AFAIK.
This is 28 x 360s, so about 2.75 hrs in total. Taken as usual with the D5300, IDAS-D1, and SW 80ED.
APP used for stacking and gradient reduction, everything else done in PS.
Would have liked twice, or 3 times, the data, but it's just not happening, so i've just decided to process what i've got.
Thanks for looking, and all CC welcome as always ?
So with no new data at hand (or on the horizon it would seem) i decided to go back and re-process my short stack of M81 & M82, being the glutton for punishment that i am! The last time i re-processed this was about a year ago, so i was curious to see if i could get any more out of it.
It's hideously low on data (nothing new there!), this is just 9 x 600s of colour (with an IDAS-D1) together with 7 x 1200s of Ha (which i only used to Lighten the Reds in the Ha jets of M82 and the small spiral regions of M81). AstroPixelProcessor used for stacking and gradient reduction, and PS for everything else.
I mistakenly shot the colour at ISO 800, instead of the usual 200 i always use. A mistake i imagine every DSLR user has made before! And i have to say i really noticed it during processing. There was noticeably less colour in the stars.
That being said, i was still able to bring out more colour in the core of M81 this time. And i think M82 looks a bit better as well, it was definitely over-sharpened before.
I really love these targets, but they just make me wish i had more reach!
Here is the original thread:
And here's the new one, including a cropped version:
Like the lunatic that I am, I decided to get the scope out last week during that storm that was passing through. The skies were clear and there was no moon about, so I figured why not! Only problem was the 17-20 mph winds, lol.
I got 2 hrs of subs but had to throw away half of them due to guiding problems more so than the wind, amazingly. This was the 2nd time in a row i'd had Dec guiding problems, and that's after about 2 years of not having a single problem guiding. After the 1st hr of wasted subs, I turned off Fast Switching in Dec and chose to only Dither in RA, and the Dec problems mostly went away, at least to allow me to capture 1 hr of 'still dodgy but just about useable' subs. Once M42 disappeared behind the neighbour's roof, I then re-calibrated on the Celestial Equator (Dec 0) and when I switched to the Pinwheel Galaxy I was able to guide as normal again (with Fast Switching and Dithering in both RA and Dec both turned on again) and didn't lose any subs, despite the wind, so I've decided that from now on I won't be calibrating at the target itself, i'm always going to do it at Dec 0.
I decided to throw this in with another 1 hr of subs (plus 10 x 30s for the core) that I took back in Jan 2017 (has it really been that long?!). That hr also had issues, with some weird streaking in the lower left that I could never work out what caused it. The D5300 hadn't been modified at that stage either. So I fired it all in to APP and decided to stack it anyway, and give it a quick process. Then chose to crank it up to 11 on the colour front, just for laughs.
It won't be going on the wall anytime soon, lol, but I suppose it came out a bit better than I was expecting, all things considered.
20 x 360s with an IDAS-D1
D5300, 80ED, HEQ5-Pro.
Stacked in APP, processed in PS.
edit - I forgot to downscale it - so no pixel peeping allowed ?