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I run a Youtube Channel and as part of that I like to live stream the telescope. But the problem is lack of consistency.
Orion EON 110, Meade 10" SCT
Orion Mount - Exos2-PMC. Meade Mount 'push to' alt az with clockwork drive
APT, SharpCap, PHD2, Stellarium, ASCOM Hub
Focal Lengths Orion 660mm, Guide Scopes 188mm, SCT 2500mm
Powered USB for ZWO cameras (120 and 294)
Here is what happens:
Cameras, sometimes work, sometimes don't. I am not making the mistake of trying to get APT and SharpCap to view the same camera. I used APT for the guide scope and SharpCap for the main tube and the 294. Sometimes APT will take an image, sometimes it will do live view, sometimes both, sometimes neither. It is very distracting to the stream to spend an HOUR turning the computer off and on, plugging, unplugging and replugging the cameras just to get them to image.
When I do get an image it plate solves at the NCP, but if you move away, setting the coordinates to the scope position or the object I am looking at, it doesn't consistently plate solve. Sometimes it does, sometimes not. It is completely irregular and can change within a session.
Not all three plate solving means even work, for blind solve,
ASTAP never seems to work, either in point craft or locally stand alone
PS2 and ASPS work intermittently, as above
I did download all the catalogs and they are in the default directories.
This is very frustrating and I was wondering if anyone else is having this issue or has suggestions.
By Padraic M
I spent the full night out last night and got 6 hours of Ha lights on the Bubble and the Horsehead. Reasonably pleased with the results, but even though I followed my usual process and got good focus statistics in APT, I am slightly out of focus with roundy stars and some are even slightly donutty. Samples are attached below.
- After getting close to spot-on focus, the APT Bahtinov Aid showed a focus distance oscillating from -0.02 to +0.02. Seeing seemed good to the inexpert eye. Not so sure about transparency as there was some thin, wispy cloud throughout the night. So, I started the night's imaging with focus 'Close' rather than 'On' focus.
- Different subs show different quality stars, ranging from small donuts to circles.
- HEQ5 Pro Rowan; SW Esprit 80 with field flattener, SW stock manual Crayford focuser; ZWO EFW Mini; Baader 1.25" 3.5nm Ha filter; ZWO ASI1600MM Pro binned 1x1 @ -20c.
- AA Starwave 50mm guidescope with ZWO ASI290mm Mini guidecam binned 2x2.
- All subs are 300s, gain 139, offset 10.
- Polar alignment with Sharpcap to 17 arcsec ("Excellent"); capture with APT; guiding with Phd2. Focus with Bahtinov mask and APT Bahtinov Aid. Stacked in DSS with Darks, Flats and Dark Flats.
- Mount is well balanced in RA, but is very camera-heavy in Dec.
- PHD2 guiding was around 2"/px. Imaging pixel scale is 1.9"/px.
- Do I put the round stars down to seeing, given that the Bahtinov Aid focus distance was bouncing equally above and below zero?
- Can poor seeing cause the donut stars?
- Would an electronic auto-focuser do any better in this situation?
- Would the Seeing Monitor in Sharpcap give useful information? I didn't think to use it last night.
- Could my guiding performance, and possibly the Dec balance, have affected the image quality in this way?
- What are my options in future - abandon imaging for the night? Bin all images in software 2x2 or 4x4 to sharpen the stars at the expense of lower resolution?
- Other suggestions?
Sample 1: Detail from a single 5-min sub of Bubble nebula at 100% showing round stars, and a blurred bubble.
Sample 2: Detail from a different sub of the Bubble nebula at 400% showing donuts
Sample 3: Detail from a 5-min sub of the Horsehead nebula at 100%, showing both round and donut stars
Finally, both images stacked, calibrated and stretched, scaled to 4x4 in Gimp. 28x300s Ha on bubble, 22*300s Ha on horsehead.
As I am ready to invest in this new CMOS camera from ZWO the Asi2600mc pro , I am trying to understand why this camera will be better than a DSLR with a filter Infront....
How this camera will give me better images ?
I have used DSLR camera some years ago , when I was starting this hobby but after that I have been through mono ccd's , since the time I realized that unfortunately due to lack of time I can not continue with mono imaging and filters....
So I am thinking to give it a try with a brand new, let's say technology of Color CMOS and see what I can get out of it....
I see some really nice examples on the net but am I going to achieve them ?
The Zwo Asi294mc pro widely used around the world is also very promising...Discontinued already as I hear...Amp glow issues....is it really so annoying ?cheaper than the new asi2600 MC pro by half price....
So can someone persuade me that the Zwo Asi2600mc pro is better than the others ? 🤔