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Hi all

 

I’m really struggling with my 462, I know it’s not ideal for deep sky but I tried to photograph Mars the other day but I couldn’t get anything apart from noise. Even at 30s exposure and max gain I wasn’t getting anything. What am I doing wrong?

 

thanks in advance 

Jack

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Hi Jack, how are you finding focusing? I am new to imaging and objects 'disappear' very quickl outside of focus. Try housing on a bright star 1st to get you close. I have a bhatinov mask to help. 

cheers

Ian

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Top tip, point it at something big first... like the Moon, you cant miss it...lol.

Get it roughly in focus (make a note of its position), then swing round to a planet or star to fine focus.

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2 minutes ago, Uranium235 said:

Top tip, point it at something big first... like the Moon, you cant miss it...lol.

Get it roughly in focus (make a note of its position), then swing round to a planet or star to fine focus.

^^^^This^^^^

Beaten to it by minutes.

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Not sure what scope you're using, but the 462 should be an excellent planetary camera.

The planets are very bright (relative to deep sky objects) and should be easily captured with exposures in the tens of milliseconds. 

I was imaging Mars around October with a C6 SCT and I think I was using exposure times of around 20ms. Granted, Mars is now further away from us, so will appear smaller and dimmer, but it should still be easily captured. At 30s it should be way overexposed.

As has been suggested, either your focus is off, or you are not pointing at Mars (or maybe the lens cap is still on? 🙃)

Focusing on the moon is a good tip (you literally can't miss it!), or maybe try focusing during the day on a distant object (tree, lamppost, aerial, etc).

That should get you somewhere in the ball park focus-wise, if you still can't see anything when you try to look at Mars then you know your pointing is off.

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Also, the 462 has a small sensor, so depending on the scope being used, the FOV could be extremely small. In that case, your pointing accuracy would only have to be off by a very small fraction for Mars not to appear within the FOV at all.

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The camera works well connected to an Android device using an OTG cable to make daytime focusing quick without needing to take a laptop out. Or even setup inside if you can see a distant object through a window (not sun) to get your infinity focus position.

Good luck.

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Thanks for all the responses, it definitely sounds like I was well out on my focus. I’ll set it up during the day this weekend and give it another go, then hopefully all should be well if and when the clouds clear.

 

all the best

 

Jack

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On 28/01/2021 at 22:47, jackp93 said:

Hi all

 

I’m really struggling with my 462, I know it’s not ideal for deep sky but I tried to photograph Mars the other day but I couldn’t get anything apart from noise. Even at 30s exposure and max gain I wasn’t getting anything. What am I doing wrong?

 

thanks in advance 

Jack

E7934B9B-EC02-4BB6-86E6-90FB2998D66C.png

I had a similar problem once, but I was very stupid not to realise that the dust cap was still on one of the attachments in the image train! It took a while to realise  that and I didn't tell anyone about that, until now!

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I've generally found that something as bright as Mars makes its presence visible however far out the focus is. 

My first question is: how sure are you that Mars is in the field of view? I have the ASI178 which a smallish chip and a narrow field. It takes some effort, usually plate solving and goto, to get a target in the image frame.

It's entirely possible to have an object in an eyepiece's field but its image miss the chip on a planetary camera when you swap over. So I'd be looking at both aim and focus.

And from very recent experience I'd also advise taking the cap off the end of the scope. You wouldn't believe how long it took me to track that one down the other night! :)

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