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I made an acquisition and processing tutorial a while back (3 years ago? Yikes!) and it is fairly dated in terms of what I'm doing these days. I've been asked for a long time to make a new one showing what I'm doing these days. Specifically how I'm processing a single shot image for both the surface and prominences and how to process them together to show prominences and the surface at once. I've abandoned doing split images and composites and strictly work from one image using layers. Acquisition does not use gamma at all anymore. Nothing terribly fancy, but it's not exactly intuitive so hopefully this new video will illustrate most of the fundamentals to get you started. Instead of an hour, this time it's only 18 minutes. It's real time from start to finish. I'm sorry for the long "waiting periods" where I'm just waiting for the software to finish its routine, it lasts 1.5 minutes and 30 seconds tops typically at first. The first 4 minutes is literally just stacking & alignment in AS!3. I typically will go faster than this, but wanted to slow down enough to try to talk through what I'm doing as I do it. Hopefully you can see each action on the screen. I may have made a few mistakes or said a few incorrect things or terms, forgive me for that, this is not my day job. I really hope it helps folk get more into processing as its not difficult or intimidating when you see a simple process with only a few things that are used. The key is good data to begin with and a good exposure value. Today's data came from a 100mm F10 achromatic refractor and an ASI290MM camera with an HA filter. I used FireCapture to acquire the data with a defocused flat frame. No gamma is used. I target anywhere from 65% to 72% histogram fill. That's it! The processing is fast and simple. I have a few presets that I use, but they are all defaults in Photoshop. A lot of the numbers I use for parameters are based on image scale, so keep that in mind, experiment with your own values. The only preset I use that is not a default is my coloring scheme. I color with levels in Photoshop, and my values are Red: 1.6, Green 0.8, Blue 0.2 (these are mid-point values).
Processing Tutorial Video (18 minutes):
RAW (.TIF) files available here to practice on (the same images you will see below as RAW TIFs):
Video for Acquisition, Focus, Flat Calibration and Exposure (20 minutes):
(Please let me know if any links do not work)
Results from today using this work flow method.
SSM data (sampled during 1.5~2 arc-second seeing conditions):
Equipment for today:
100mm F10 Frac (Omni XLT 120mm F8.3 masked to 4")
Baader Red CCD-IR Block Filter (ERF)
PST etalon + BF10mm
SSM (for fun, no automation)
By Michael Hogan
I have decided to sell my Cem-120 mount as i got a second hand AP 1100 GTO from my friend who got a new AP 1600 with encoders
its just under a year old bought from Altair Astro so still under two year warranty is in mint cont i couldn't miss the opportunity to get
AP 1100 GTO and let it go still waiting for pier plate for mount.
So theirs no point in keeping two large mounts after i got my dream final mount buyer will pay shipping price is 2150 pounds.
Altair Astro price without Ipolar Camera is 3250 pounds without Ipolar Camera which is 200 pounds total 3450 pounds
Setting up my new HEQ5. The same issues are present (by design) on RA setting circles on the other mounts?
Instructions missing for RA setting circle thumbscrew
Can the RA setting circle actually be used as a normal setting circle - it seems just "cosmetic". It's either locked or slips when free to rotate.
I had a plan, very simply my HEQ5 was at it's payload limit so needed to upgrade. Part of the upgrade would naturally mean parting with the HEQ5 to regain some much needed cash (Bought this as my Christmas Present now Boiler playing up and really needs replacing not repairing yet again).
I received my CEM60 with Tri-Pier from FLO as usual within just over 24 hours and had a play with it and love it.
So time came today to dismantle my old friend and put it up for sale in the usual places.
BUT, I cannot believe how sad I felt when dismantling it 😞 . I feel such a silly so and so but I feel sort of some attachment to this inanimate object. Only had it just over 2 years but have replaced all the bearings (even though when I striped it down I do not think they were required), added the Rowan Belt modification, spent ages tweaking the backlash out of it the best I could, and when I needed a Losmandy saddle upgraded the original saddle to a dual load saddle.
Now although sense tells me to sell it as planned I am now wondering whether to keep it in case I ever start to do some imaging other than on my patio. It seems to make no senseas I will probably not use very often but I am a bit of a hoarder anyway and really struggle to part with anything I think will be useful one day (my garage is testimony to this fact 🙂 ).
I guess the sensible thing is at some stage getting a more light-weight tripod for the CEM60 as the weight difference is not that much to make the HEQ5 any better then the CEM60 for travelling and keeping two setups on APT for each mount may lead to mistakes being made.