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M51 through the murky orange skies


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Here's another transformation, thanks to PixInsight.

I know M51 is a rather ubiquitious, tired and worn-out object for deep sky images but it's high in the sky right now and my sky at the zenith is slightly less orange than anywhere else in the sky.

Maybe the image look a bit over processed, too much wavelet processing and too much saturation boost. But I'm really pleased with the TS OAG which I used to guide this image.

Exposure : 6x5 mins, QHY8 bin 1x1, IDAS filter

Skywatcher 190MN

Telescope Service 9mm Off-axis guider, QHY5 autoguider


Stacked using DeepSkyStacker then processed in PixInsight



Edited by PortableAstronomer
spelling mistake
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  • 1 month later...

Well I guess we could always drive down to the Alps. That's what a lot of cloggies seem to do:-)

Apologies if you saw this pic (below) on another thread, but it shows how the LP really shows itself on a cloudy night.

Most people would say I should be using a mono CCD to get more out of narrowband imaging instead of one-shot-colour. But the large Sony sensor in the QHY8 has such low noise I don't need to do dark frames. And saves money on filters too. The QHY8 is surprisingly good at H-Alpha considering only a quarter of the pixels are used at that wavelength, as Stevel L has shown with his photos. Not ideal but it is a good multi-purpose and versatile CCD camera.

I might save up for a small mono CCD, maybe a Sony 285-based sensor, specifically to add HA detail to specific objects, then blend those with the wide coverage RGB of the QHY8 images.


Edited by PortableAstronomer
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Here's the setup in the back yard, in case anyone's interested in moving to off-axis guiding with the 190MN or other mak-newts.

I thought it would be good to show how the TS OAG unit fits into the imaging train on the 190MN scope.

Cheers. Chris

Nice image of M51 Chris, I think you have done a great job of combating the LP.

BTW, why the blue in the scope pics? White balance set to tungsten instead of daylight/cloud/shade?

I like the car photo under the yellow sky. Very dramatic.


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"BTW, why the blue in the scope pics? White balance set to tungsten instead of daylight/cloud/shade?"

It was taken using my mobile phone, the camera of which is a bit useless. I used outdoor colour balance. I'll use my other phone camera in the future.

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