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Double Cluster and Heart Nebula - Work in progress


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Hello everyone!

First clear skies I've had since a recent purchase, wanted a modded DSLR but didnt want to get my 800D modded as I use it for daytime also, so I brought a second hand modded 600D with a LPS filter courtesy of @teoria_del_big_bang - Thank you very much again and was nice to meet you :D. So now going to use my 800D for Reflection nebula only, and the 600D for everything else :).

But last night was the first oppurtunity I had for a test drive, sadly it was intermittent cloud coverage, but just left it running away and deleted anything ruined by clouds! Was also a 84% or so moon, but nowhere near the object, still a far from perfect night though. Now I do plan on getting more and more data on this, but was too eager just to leave it unstacked and editted, as I wanted to see what I had caught. Aiming it towards the Heart and Double cluster (Wanted soul too, but that would leave too much near the edges, at risk of being cropped out after a few nights and bad framing). I was impressed from the first sub, actually being able to see the full heart on a single sub of 40 seconds.

Sadly that brings me onto another problem, even with the LPS filter, sky glow was still troubling me with my Samyang 135mm, even stopped down to F4.0, I understand the moon wouldnt be helping, but I've had the issue before without a moon, maxing out at around 40-50 seconds before the histogram goes too far to the right and the image becomes bright. Is this a common issue with this lens in a bortle 5?

One more problem I'm hoping I have the answer to myself, but just want it confirming. I process in startools, is this 'mottling' effect, that is basically the space between everything, stars, nebula etc, caused by noise? Made worse by only 1 hours data? So getting more data would improve the SNR and there for reduce the mottling? I can see its walking noise also, but don't have a guiding set up yet so can't dither.

Here it is anyhow, critique as usual pleaaase :D

1 Hours data @ 40 seconds per sub

20 of every caliberation frame

Modded 600D

LPS Filter

SGP unguided

And the odd cloud.

Best Edit Heart Neb.Png

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Glad you got chance to try it out and it is back in use again.
The clouds were a bit of a pain up here as well, I didn't get any useful data as I was testing my new rotator which I still have some teething issues with and by about 2:00 am I gave up and packed it in.

Steve

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I managed 3 minute subs on my 6D and Samyang 135 at f4 and ISO 1600. You need to ignore the histogram on the camera as it's measuring 8 bit values. The images might look bright on the camera but the raw images will be much darker when you process them. I used APT to capture and the 8bit histogram showed all my subs as right on the right hand edge.

Great first effort with this. The Heart has lots of Ha but its not as bright as the NAN for example so needs more subs. Keep at it though! Here's what 5 hours worth of 3 minute subs can do with the Samyang 135 and LP filter, and my light pollution was a lot worse than bortle 5!

 

 

NGC896 135mm.jpg

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I think with a near full moon and bortle 5 with such a wide angle lens it will be challenging - but as you have proved not impossible. You could try and more restrictive filter which would help and as you say, more integration time. Personally for relatively dim targets I would aim for a good few hours if possible.

With regards to the background, much as I like Startools, I have found that it can make the background a bit 'messy'. This can be improved in the settings - I quite often use the manual develop rather than the autodev to avoid over-stretching the background. I also use APP to do a few minor tweaks before processing in Startools (not as per the recommended methods but it works for me and I keep the data virtually linear). However, at the end of the day, the better the data the better the end result.

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57 minutes ago, teoria_del_big_bang said:

Glad you got chance to try it out and it is back in use again.
The clouds were a bit of a pain up here as well, I didn't get any useful data as I was testing my new rotator which I still have some teething issues with and by about 2:00 am I gave up and packed it in.

Steve

Thank you! Hopefully them teething issues are sorted for our next clear night :D

34 minutes ago, david_taurus83 said:

I managed 3 minute subs on my 6D and Samyang 135 at f4 and ISO 1600. You need to ignore the histogram on the camera as it's measuring 8 bit values. The images might look bright on the camera but the raw images will be much darker when you process them. I used APT to capture and the 8bit histogram showed all my subs as right on the right hand edge.

Great first effort with this. The Heart has lots of Ha but its not as bright as the NAN for example so needs more subs. Keep at it though! Here's what 5 hours worth of 3 minute subs can do with the Samyang 135 and LP filter, and my light pollution was a lot worse than bortle 5!

Ill try increasing the subs a little next then, see how it goes after stacking. Unfiltered I did do 90 seconds once not even thinking about the histo, only looking for max without startrails. Then when it came to stacking it was still rather bright. And a 'light brown' in the unprocessed tif 😅 (Thought they were meant to be pretty black until processed). But now I have the filter I'll try again :)

Brilliant picture also, hopefully I can come close to such a result!

35 minutes ago, Clarkey said:

I think with a near full moon and bortle 5 with such a wide angle lens it will be challenging - but as you have proved not impossible. You could try and more restrictive filter which would help and as you say, more integration time. Personally for relatively dim targets I would aim for a good few hours if possible.

With regards to the background, much as I like Startools, I have found that it can make the background a bit 'messy'. This can be improved in the settings - I quite often use the manual develop rather than the autodev to avoid over-stretching the background. I also use APP to do a few minor tweaks before processing in Startools (not as per the recommended methods but it works for me and I keep the data virtually linear). However, at the end of the day, the better the data the better the end result.

Yeah I use the 'filmdev' too (I assume thats the manual one?) Autodev-Crop-Bin-Wipe-Filmdev. What minor tweaks are those you do in APP may I ask? Hopefully I can do something similar in GIMP. Cheers :D

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Autodev is probably one of the most difficult things to master in Startools - I struggle endlessly with it trying different roi's and fiddling with the parameters. Sometimes it seems a bit too keen to show the very faintest nebulosity, to the detriment of the overall image, but ultimately it does give a better stretch than film dev.

Have you read the unofficial manual? Some useful tips and tricks in there. 

Edited by The Lazy Astronomer
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23 minutes ago, Grant93 said:

What minor tweaks are those you do in APP may I ask? Hopefully I can do something similar in GIMP.

Unfortunately the are not reproducible in Gimp. I do background gradient removal on the stacks before transferring to ST. I find it helps give a better result on some targets. To be honest I do not have a fixed work flow. I always stack in APP as I think it gives excellent results. Sometimes I combine RGB in APP sometimes I use Startools. I try lots of different versions until I get one I am happy with.

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21 hours ago, Grant93 said:

I process in startools, is this 'mottling' effect

Hi

Nice shot.

You can minimise the effect by choosing a more suitable ROI for second and subsequent AutoDevs and/or just kill it using the Denoise module's large scale slider.

@jager945will be able to fill you in on the intricacies of the process.

Even better, go again. This time, clean the sensor, lose the dark frames, dither between light frames and stack using a clipping algorithm. Siril is the best I've found for the latter. Then you'll really be able to see the StarTools magic:)

Cheers

 

Edited by alacant
español
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21 hours ago, The Lazy Astronomer said:

Autodev is probably one of the most difficult things to master in Startools - I struggle endlessly with it trying different roi's and fiddling with the parameters. Sometimes it seems a bit too keen to show the very faintest nebulosity, to the detriment of the overall image, but ultimately it does give a better stretch than film dev.

Have you read the unofficial manual? Some useful tips and tricks in there. 

Yes I always thought that above autodev, although it brings out loads, it also seems to make the image look way way overprocessed, but I suppose you can tone things down later on. But I'll take a look at the manual thanks :D

21 hours ago, Clarkey said:

Unfortunately the are not reproducible in Gimp. I do background gradient removal on the stacks before transferring to ST. I find it helps give a better result on some targets. To be honest I do not have a fixed work flow. I always stack in APP as I think it gives excellent results. Sometimes I combine RGB in APP sometimes I use Startools. I try lots of different versions until I get one I am happy with.

For some reason when I first read APP I thought you meant photoshop (Idk how 😅), so I thought there might be something similar on GIMP, but then I realised it wasnt PS.

1 hour ago, alacant said:

Hi

Nice shot.

You can minimise the effect by choosing a more suitable ROI for second and subsequent AutoDevs and/or just kill it using the Denoise module's large scale slider.

@jager945will be able to fill you in on the intricacies of the process.

Even better, go again. This time, clean the sensor, lose the dark frames, dither between light frames and stack using a clipping algorithm. Siril is the best I've found for the latter. Then you'll really be able to see the StarTools magic:)

Cheers

 

Ill give it a go again after gathering more data with Autodev rather than Filmdev then, I forgot about the ROI tool in Autodev. About dithering, its something I really want to do, but how do I go about it without a guiding set up? 

Cheers!

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