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Posted (edited)

I know DSLRs are more for “official” AP imaging and I should probably stick with my trusty ASI224 or maybe think about a 294 or similar sensors but....as probably many, I have a DSLR sitting at home not doing much. Can I do EAA with it?

 

Today is quite easy to have 24Mp in relativity cheap bodies so why not to use it somehow? Small pixels..I know, but maybe going for wide field and bright objects with fast lenses it may still work and give something interesting. Anyone tried? Any experience? 

 

What I really like of EAA is the ability to do everything while observing and without the need to come back for long processing sessions. I have searched around a bit but I can’t find a stacking software like Sharpcap for DSLR doing live viewing as well as stacking. I think I could somehow save each frame in a folder and then stack them with DSS (if I got the name right) but can I then control remotely the camera, exposition and have live preview when slewing around?

 

Just interested to know if anyone know more about this or more in general discuss about DSLR and EAA.

 

Flavio

Edited by Deflavio
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Posted (edited)

Your asi224 using livestacking might be your best bet, using a Dslr really is an ergonomic stretch for live viewing and then the small screen too. 

With your 224 you can livestack wide fields with a camera lens or all sky too, I am doing it with my imx385 and it's just fancy with my 16 or 17 inch laptop screens. I don't save anything and delete everything Sharpcap saves as for me this is just a sub for visual observations of the deep sky so when I roll my portable digital obsy back in the garage for covering nothing beyond the shorthand in my logs is undertaken.

I am using the Zwo asi385mc as it is their recommended camera for eaa, they have advised me well the camera is very sensitive and has  an ampglow reduction circuit that really brings it under my Bortle class 4 skies.

I am new to eeva myself...and glad to share what little I've learned so far.

Best of Luck and Clear Skies of Course ?

                            Freddie...

Edited by SIDO
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Posted (edited)

@SIDO Well, I'm very happy with my 224, just really tempted by the field I could get with a DSLR I have sitting at home. My choice today will be to get either a 294 or 183mono but I like to explore with what I have and experiment around, that's also part of the fun for me. 

 

@Martin Meredith Uhm, yes an ASCOM driver for Canon is interesting and would make things simpler...  but eh my camera is a Nikon ?.

I was reading around and found on the SharpCap manual that, in theory, everyone could just use the "virtual cameras/ virtual folder monitor camera" option to scan a folder and still be able to use darks and flats and keep using the main live stacking functions. https://docs.sharpcap.co.uk/3.2/#Virtual Cameras ... 

Now, I can see few software like DigicamControl  http://digicamcontrol.com and probably Astrophotography tool https://ideiki.com/astro/ (and I'm sure others) to set up scripts or batches for running and saving multiple shoots from DSLR and that should work. ... and if I save in Mono FITS I may even get to use Jocular!

 

....but now I see a problem why a DSRL may be not really ideal for fast EAA imaging...  clack clack, clack clack, clack clack, clack clack, clack clack,... unless I can take 5-10 seconds exposures (or more) directly from the live-view mode the sound of the shutter, running all the time, will probably drive me crazy and it may be not that good also for the life of the camera.?

Or maybe, is it feasible? Only few shots to goto/plate solving and then run ~50 shoots for stacking? I need to try and see... 

 

 

Edited by Deflavio

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30 minutes ago, Deflavio said:

@SIDO Well, I'm very happy with my 224, just really tempted by the field I could get with a DSLR I have sitting at home. My choice today will be to get either a 294 or 183mono but I like to explore with what I have and experiment around, that's also part of the fun for me. 

 

@Martin Meredith Uhm, yes an ASCOM driver for Canon is interesting and would make things simpler...  but eh my camera is a Nikon ?.

I was reading around and found on the SharpCap manual that, in theory, everyone could just use the "virtual cameras/ virtual folder monitor camera" option to scan a folder and still be able to use darks and flats and keep using the main live stacking functions. https://docs.sharpcap.co.uk/3.2/#Virtual Cameras ... 

Now, I can see few software like DigicamControl  http://digicamcontrol.com and probably Astrophotography tool https://ideiki.com/astro/ (and I'm sure others) to set up scripts or batches for running and saving multiple shoots from DSLR and that should work. 

 

....but now I see a problem why a DSRL may be not really ideal for fast EAA imaging...  clack clack, clack clack, clack clack, clack clack, clack clack,... unless I can take 5-10 seconds exposures (or more) directly from the live-view mode the sound of the shutter, running all the time, will probably drive me crazy and it may be not that good also for the life of the camera.?

Or maybe, is it feasible? Only few shots to goto/plate solving and then run ~50 shoots for stacking? I need to try and see... 

 

 

You would get a nice wide field with your 224 and a 50mm camera lens you likely have and with no clicking noises, at that f ratio you've got some fast light so the zwo model is not as critical.

Could be another experiment for you ?

The clicking thing would drive me somewhere too. 

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Yes is the simple answer I and many others have been doing VA or whatever you want to call it today with DSLR ?

For example using Astrotoaster you have "Live" stack and view EAA images - remember EAA is not all about getting a photographers level image - IMO.

Using Astrotoaster you are able to get a live view on a local or remote PC within a couple of frames depending on the object.

In effect its like doing DSS and looking at the finished image after post processing - only in "near Real Time".

All I do is pre create "Darks"  and a Master Dark select the folder where the images will be placed by ,in my case,APT and let Astrotoaster do its thing - while watching and "tinkering" with adjustments to get something I am satisfied with - quite a simple process. The image appears within 2 or 3 frames and just gets better as the images are stacked. 

Attached is a screen print of an actual image shown - with text added later of course ?

 

Step 5 and the images start to appear.png

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Posted (edited)

Yes, it's certainly feasible, and stacking may not be required. Here's a few example 2-minute exposures taken with a 135mm lens at f3.5. In the dark they show up much better on the camera screen and its possible to zoom in to see quite a bit of detail. My Samyang f2 lens would be even better.

spacer.png

The above is after a very quick process. Results will be greatly improved by shooting from a dark site, but an Ha filter is an option for light-polluted areas.

Edited by Knight of Clear Skies
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On 24/04/2019 at 08:49, Martin Meredith said:

I really wish that Sharpcap will be able to extend its functionality to DSLR's but am haunted by the knowing comment, "let's see how far it gets" here-https://www.otelescope.com/forums/topic/2821-bye-3rd-party-api-used-as-basis-for-ascomdslr-driver/

Cheers,
Steve

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2 hours ago, SteveNickolls said:

I really wish that Sharpcap will be able to extend its functionality to DSLR's but am haunted by the knowing comment, "let's see how far it gets" here-https://www.otelescope.com/forums/topic/2821-bye-3rd-party-api-used-as-basis-for-ascomdslr-driver/

Cheers,
Steve

I'll give it a try when I can. I keep meaning to try Astrotoaster too but imaging opportunities are so few and far between... It's likely someone else will be able to check these possibles out well before I might and they will, hopefully, post their results :)

Louise

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Posted (edited)
On 26/04/2019 at 21:57, SteveNickolls said:

I really wish that Sharpcap will be able to extend its functionality to DSLR's but am haunted by the knowing comment, "let's see how far it gets" here-https://www.otelescope.com/forums/topic/2821-bye-3rd-party-api-used-as-basis-for-ascomdslr-driver/

Cheers,
Steve

Well in theory if SharpCap can scan a folder for images to stack that should be not too bad... Over the weekend I was testing both digicamcontrol and APT. They both seems capable of controlling nicely my DSLR. One nice feature I found in digicamcontrol is the possibility to average in realtime multiple frame of the live view. No stacking just frame average... but that may be enough for quick focusing, goto and framing. If needed I can always shoot a test frame to refine focus or maybe even platesolving (not sure)..and when ready I can  setup a batch to get 50/70 frames to stack. I haven't test the full thing yet so I'm not sure everything will work but it seems promising. I guess similar things can be done using Astrotoaster.

 

Edited by Deflavio
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I tried the sharpcap Ascom driver with an 1100d during the day earlier - it seemed to work. Of course, SharpCap takes images continuously and there's no way to pause it once the camera is selected. Still I'll try it properly when I can.

Louise 

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, Thalestris24 said:

I tried the sharpcap Ascom driver with an 1100d during the day earlier - it seemed to work. Of course, SharpCap takes images continuously and there's no way to pause it once the camera is selected. Still I'll try it properly when I can.

Louise 

Does it mean, the shutter keeps clicking or can you raise the mirror and keep shutter open?

I got unconfirmed rumours that some cameras may be able to "convert" them in a more traditional astrocamera "mode" by using a software shutter. I think the very expensive Nikon850 may do that, mine of course not. Not sure about Canon systems. Maybe mirrorless?

Edited by Deflavio

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1 minute ago, Deflavio said:

Does it mean, the shutter is keep clicking or you can raise mirror and keep shutter open?

I got unconfirmed rumours that some cameras may be able to "convert" them in a more traditional astrocamera "mode" by using a software shutter. I think the very expensive Nikon850 may do that, mine of course not. Not sure about Canon systems. Maybe mirrorless?

Yes, shutter keeps clicking. I can set a longer exposure, or maybe use liveview, but either will cause the sensor temperature to rapidly rise. This is going to be  a problem for live  stacking since you really need a cooling pause between exposures  with a standard dslr.  Probably will  be  better off just using APT with DSS live.

Louise

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Been using canon 600d for a time,, weather constraints have hampered me for a long time,,

Old stash and myself have been using astrotoaster for a while and being honest it's the best around for dslr ,, video astronomy,, 

You can use canon utilities to interact with astrotoaster ,, more basic set up or use backyard Eos,, which has a lot more features,, but of course it is intended for Astronomy.

I have used analogue CCTV cameras and digital cameras, qhy5lii colour and zwo Asi 178 colour camera but I have to be honest I personally prefer DSLR ,byeos and astrotoaster combination.

I have just bought the canon 4000d and hope to get out a bit more weather permitting..

Byeos,, is a lot cheaper than any decent Astronomy camera and if you have a live view canon DSLR I would give it serious consideration.

Howie in Australia has done a few astrotoaster tutorial videos on astrotoaster using canon utilities,, well worth watching,,, if you wish to go down DSLR route

Davy

 

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15 hours ago, shirva said:

Been using canon 600d for a time,, weather constraints have hampered me for a long time,,

Old stash and myself have been using astrotoaster for a while and being honest it's the best around for dslr ,, video astronomy,, 

You can use canon utilities to interact with astrotoaster ,, more basic set up or use backyard Eos,, which has a lot more features,, but of course it is intended for Astronomy.

I have used analogue CCTV cameras and digital cameras, qhy5lii colour and zwo Asi 178 colour camera but I have to be honest I personally prefer DSLR ,byeos and astrotoaster combination.

I have just bought the canon 4000d and hope to get out a bit more weather permitting..

Byeos,, is a lot cheaper than any decent Astronomy camera and if you have a live view canon DSLR I would give it serious consideration.

Howie in Australia has done a few astrotoaster tutorial videos on astrotoaster using canon utilities,, well worth watching,,, if you wish to go down DSLR route

Davy

 

I might get around to trying Astrotoaster one of these days - but, there again, I've been saying that for years ha ha. The more I think about it, the more it seems as well to just collect individual subs since I rarely manage to image a target for more than about 20 mins anyway. My Pentax Takumar 300mm and 1100d combo is currently set up to image through a East-facing window space which is a max of 44cm wide and about 50cm high so rather restrictive! I have the same arrangement for the 80mm + qhy183m. I'll post some images taken last month in the EEVA Reports section later.

Louise

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With byeos,, you don't need to do single twenty minutes , you can do this in much smaller subs,, if a plane ,cloud, satellite passed in your fov then you don't lose much,, astrotoaster works alongside DSS.

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This tutorial was done by Howie in Australia,, well worth watching his videos if you want to use a DSLR for Astronomy

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4 minutes ago, shirva said:

With byeos,, you don't need to do single twenty minutes , you can do this in much smaller subs,, if a plane ,cloud, satellite passed in your fov then you don't lose much,, astrotoaster works alongside DSS.

Hi

I'm limited to about 20mins in total for a particular target and may not get a chance to revisit it. My Individual subs are restricted to about 60-90s at F4 because of skyglow.

Louise

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This tutorial was done by Howie in Australia,, well worth watching his videos if you want to use a DSLR for Astronomy

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Interesting thread - a relative has just given me their old 300D and was wondering whether to 'convert' it (if possible). to an astro camera.

 

 

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300 was good for astrophotography but for ( video astronomy) or what ever it's called now 😂  ,, live view mode a must ,in my humble opinion

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