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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)
I'm tempted to go down the route of getting myself a brand new reflector... My friend's old Meade 114/900 is a good telescope, but I want something of my own and with a bit more light gathering power. To this end, I've been looking at a couple of different models and manufactures.
I must admit, the Skywatcher Explorer 130M floats my boat, as it's motorised with a speed controller.
Any thoughts or observations?🤔
Celestron C8 XLT + extras and SkyWatcher Star Travel 80 (ST80)
I have a Celestron C8 with XLT Starbrite coatings. Will include the full length base plate, both visual and imaging backs, scope rings, front 8" end cap and the finder scope with it. No box I'm afraid. Optics are good and clean, focal length is huge - 2300mm from memory. This lot would cost close to £1300 new and one with less spec went for £750 on fleabay recently. Might be interested in a part exchange or will let it go for £450 collection only.
Also, I have a SkyWatcher Star Traveler 80 - good optics, used as a guide scope - just the scope itself (does not include the barlow in the photo) - now including dovetail bar and scope rings looking at around £50 for it.
I have decided to save up for another refractor, WO, Equinox or even toward an Esprit. However, I would also consider p/ex for an Intel NUC and/or Pegasus Astro Pocket Powerbox.
Please excuse some of the colours - I used my astro modded 6D which was in the observatory so the "nice" purple is actually black !!
Both these are collection only.
By Clear Skies!
I am going to buy Skywatcher EQ5 Pro Go-To mount. But, unfortunately, I am low on budget.
So, does someone know where can I buy the cheapest EQ5 pro mount?
Yesterday there was a low price for it (350 €), but they changed it.
Thank you for your time!
By Bruno Marin
I found this setup in internet and make me think, with AZEQ6 GT and 2 scopes, different weights and size, without counterweight in AZ mode!
- I can put a MAK100mm 3kg +- and a OO VX10l 12kg +- without counterweight?
Does anyone have this setup mount and already used without counterweight with two telescopes of different weights? Is it really necessary to have a balance using in AZ mode?
The problem to centralize the object with both scopes is true? With the SW AZEQ6 GT?
Follow the images
a TSA-120 with 6.5 kg i think and the other with 22kg i forgot the brand hehe you can help me?