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  #141  
Old 21-07-2016, 03:15 PM
OffGrid (Steve)
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Thankyou Alex and Chris. I just need to bight the bullet now and get an order in.

Steve
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  #142  
Old 21-07-2016, 04:23 PM
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AG Hybrid (Adrian)
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Originally Posted by MattT View Post
Might have another in me too With a non-portable rig like mine the Revo 2 could be useful. So brother Adrian...reports please.

Whats the view like with a Achromatic Frac? Gotta a 10" Newt too.

Matt
The AR102 worked really well. With the IR filter and reducer the stars were rather small and pinpoint which is good. Also even at F3 the stars when in focus looked round at the edge of the image frame. When observing in "day" mode - essentially colour imaging I couldn't see any purple fringing. After about 3 images being stacked I could pick up individual star colours like orange. Bright blue stars tended to be white. I never noticed purple fringing even once.

Globular's are quite colourful. Tend to be orange in colour. But then, they would be as they are some of the oldest objects in our galaxy.
Naturally, Omega Centurai is amazing to look at. But, its those somewhat dimmer globs like M4 that are amazing. That apparent bar shaped of stars going across it is obvious and it out shined even the best my 12" could show at a very dark sky site.

At F3 the exposure times were so short that in those conditions I was hitting diminishing returns after the 3rd or 4th exposure. About 20 seconds worth. Probably due to the overwhelming light pollution robbing me of the more delicate details in images.

On a side note thanks to adjustable settings of the camera + the UV/IR filter the images were still dark in the back ground and not washed out at all. Even if the sky was light blue when I spent time on M4.

You can pull in a bit more contrast in your images if you image in "night" mode which is essentially black and white.

More to come. When the night is clear and the moon has chilled out a bit.

This is such a revelation for me in Astronomy that the contents of my eyepiece case is in serious jeopardy.

Last edited by AG Hybrid; 21-07-2016 at 10:01 PM.
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  #143  
Old 21-07-2016, 09:45 PM
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The AR102 at f3 sounds brilliant given that you got rid of star bloat.
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  #144  
Old 22-07-2016, 09:35 AM
sharptrack2 (Kevin)
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Question for the experts

Been following this thread for awhile now and I recently acquired a ZWO AS1034MC camera. So the simple question is, would this camera work well enough, with SharpCap, to get started with experimenting with video observing and also some "happy snaps" (aligned and stacked) for the personal archives. My interest is speculative at the moment, just looking at alternatives for my extremely light polluted backyard observation spot. Astrophotography looks like fun but exceeds my budget and would quickly overwhelm my patience threshold . This video approach looks like a reasonable compromise to help me with an idea I have about how I will continue my excursion into astronomy.
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  #145  
Old 22-07-2016, 10:49 PM
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In the absence of expertise.

I don't know this camera but it sounds more planetary than anything else. So might not be sensitive enough. And Qus are
- what scope do you have (and mount)
- what do you want to observe - planets DSOs ...

One way or another you want FR low to start with otherwise difficult. Low FR scope or focal reduction.

You could just try what you have and see. Start with the moon then an easier target like a globular cluster - omega centauri.
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  #146  
Old 23-07-2016, 10:50 AM
sharptrack2 (Kevin)
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for the reply Chris,

Link to camera details... https://astronomy-imaging-camera.com...si034mc-color/ sorry I miss typed the model number .

I have 3 different telescopes to experiment with...

Celestron Astromaster 130 on an EQ3 mount with RA drive
Skywatcher SW708 on an EQ3 mount with RA drive
Celestron Celestar 8 on an HEQ5 mount

Ultimately, I simply want to document what I find along the way. Not interested in publishing super detailed colour photographs, more interested in the journey. As long as the camera will capture what I see visually (or close enough) I will be happy. The video observing aspect is appealing when its 2 am and near freezing, I can setup earlier when its warmer and then relax inside with a hot cuppa and peruse the galaxy, but that is a future wishlist project.

I realise the equipment I have is not optimal for any one objective, but for now I only want to get proficient with post processing and understanding the affects of FoV and focal length on how I capture my journey.

I don't have a focal reducer for the 8" SCT so it will probably be dedicated to planetary for now, this is my pride and joy until I get a larger aperture . The 5" newt has seen its better days, was my practice dummy for cleaning mirrors, collimating, general learning of optics . The 70mm refractor was a cheap buy to get a feel for what a refractor looks like .

I also have a couple of barlows to experiment with, X2 and X3, along with various filters, including a LP filter. There's no dedicated video monitor, will be a 13" laptop running Windows 10. I have already captured some video and have been trying to get something out of Registax 6 but have not been very successful. Just not getting the hang of how to configure the aligment step, too many things I don't know enough about, and have not been able to find explanations for easily. Been searching the forum but finding mostly specific fixes for specific problems, no general knowledge bases on the features and functions, is there a hidden forum page that you have to run barefoot through a thistle patch to get to?

So... to bring this novel to a close... any links would be greatly appreciated, because I'm not finding what will help me at the moment, as well as any further advice that comes to mind.

Oh... I'm already reading through Cloudy Nights, Video Astronomy forum, Stargazers lounge, and both ZWO and Registax websites. So much to try and sift through, so little time .
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  #147  
Old 23-07-2016, 03:36 PM
OffGrid (Steve)
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If you have not already done so Kevin, have a look at Ken James site for Video assisted observing
http://ballaratman.wix.com/videoastronomy

Steve
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  #148  
Old 23-07-2016, 08:27 PM
sharptrack2 (Kevin)
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Thnx Steve,

I've seen the name a couple of times in my wanderings on the web. I'll check it out in more detail.
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  #149  
Old 23-07-2016, 11:33 PM
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Kevin

Hopefully you have an adaptor for the ASI034 to attach to these scopes. The problem is that this camera is a 1/4" CCD so its like using a ~6mm eyepiece. I would start with either the 130mm (a few people use this size reflector on a goto mount) or maybe the 70mm refractor. Then you'll have the lowest mag, largest FOV, and fastest image. You will find the C8 very difficult. Its better if you can eventually get in some focal reduction (and no barlows), we can talk about that later. It will also be slow going without a goto mount.

Forget about registax, use sharpcap. Then you can stack images while viewing and bring those images alive. Download it and give it a run during day to get used to it. As you have a ZWO camera sharpcap will let you control gain/exposure etc. Charles Copeland has a great youtube intro to it
http://www.cloudynights.com/topic/52...for-beginners/

I don't know your camera as I have the ASI224. But give it a bit of gain (~300) and some 5 - 15s exposures and see what you get. Start with some globular clusters. If there's ever an observing night up the coast I could come up (I'm near Hornsby so not that far away). I'll bring my gear, and you can try my camera/reducers etc.

Chris
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  #150  
Old 24-07-2016, 12:04 AM
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Interesting thread. I wonder if it's possible to stack images of DSO's captured from the video stream. Essentially applying a planetary work flow to DSO'S?
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  #151  
Old 24-07-2016, 07:40 AM
sharptrack2 (Kevin)
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Not sure, but this tutorial got me started...http://www.iceinspace.com.au/63-306-0-0-1-0.html so I suppose with the right combination of camera and telescope, it should be possible.
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  #152  
Old 24-07-2016, 08:53 AM
sharptrack2 (Kevin)
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Originally Posted by ChrisV View Post
Kevin

Hopefully you have an adaptor for the ASI034 to attach to these scopes. The problem is that this camera is a 1/4" CCD so its like using a ~6mm eyepiece. I would start with either the 130mm (a few people use this size reflector on a goto mount) or maybe the 70mm refractor. Then you'll have the lowest mag, largest FOV, and fastest image. You will find the C8 very difficult. Its better if you can eventually get in some focal reduction (and no barlows), we can talk about that later. It will also be slow going without a goto mount.
Yes I have a 1.25" nose piece.

I've been studying photography in parallel to get my head around the relationship between FoV as it relates to aperture, focal length, and CCD size. Not difficult to understand, just a challenge for me to put it all together. You'd think an electrical engineer who specialises in RF would not have a problem... go figure!

The mount was tracking, just poorly, I have yet to successfully polar align so I always have some drift in declination, some nights worse than others. I didn't have the HEQ5 when I first used the camera.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisV View Post
Forget about registax, use sharpcap. Then you can stack images while viewing and bring those images alive. Download it and give it a run during day to get used to it. As you have a ZWO camera sharpcap will let you control gain/exposure etc. Charles Copeland has a great youtube intro to it
http://www.cloudynights.com/topic/52...for-beginners/
I started out just trying out the camera to see what I was up against. I tried using the stacking feature in SharpCap but it complained and I gave up. Then I found the tutorial that Mike Salway put together to process a single image from a video and I tried to follow that and had alignment issues. I'll check out the YouTube link, thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisV View Post
I don't know your camera as I have the ASI224. But give it a bit of gain (~300) and some 5 - 15s exposures and see what you get. Start with some globular clusters. If there's ever an observing night up the coast I could come up (I'm near Hornsby so not that far away). I'll bring my gear, and you can try my camera/reducers etc.
I was able to get some reasonably exposed videos of Saturn, but seeing was pretty mediocre, add in the tracking error and you get a bit of a mess. But I can show them off when people come over for BBQ's . It would be great to meet you, I'm slowly expanding my circle in the forum whenever possible. If you follow the NSW informal Astro Camping trips http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/s...d.php?t=141805 and the NSW Central Coast Casual Observing http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/s...d.php?t=141802 threads, you'll likely find me.

again for all the advice and links.
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  #153  
Old 27-07-2016, 09:47 PM
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AG Hybrid (Adrian)
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So a quick little update. Had another session tonight. Also, connected my new Nexus-S unit so the EQ5 pro mount could be controlled via wireless through SkySafari on my phone. Brilliant that device. Just select the star or object on the star chart and press goto and away it goes. Great.

With the moon out of the way I was able to spend most of the evening around the central galaxy region. Naturally headed for the bright nebula's to see whats-what. Looking at the Lagoon and Trifid nebulas in colors of pink, red and blue in the case of the Trifid was truly wonderful. Spent some more time checking out some globs in color as well. Always interesting.

Highlight of the night was heading over to the Eagle nebula seeing the pinks and redish hues and positively identifying the Pillars of Creation! From a 4" cheap achromat in the center of Sydney. Truly astonishing.
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  #154  
Old 28-07-2016, 05:43 AM
OffGrid (Steve)
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Sounds like I have made the right decision Adrian.
I ordered my Revolution Imager R2 on Monday night.

Steve
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  #155  
Old 28-07-2016, 10:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonius View Post
Interesting thread. I wonder if it's possible to stack images of DSO's captured from the video stream. Essentially applying a planetary work flow to DSO'S?
Yes it certainly is. I use software such as sharpcap. Stack 5 -20sec shots from my usb camera and watch DSO images build up over a minute or two (as in my post #120). The stacking aligns so get nice images. It ain't astrophotography but its all there in color within a minute or two.

Sometimes i frame grab from my analog camera (similar to those that Steve & Adrian have) and stack those. But not like planetary - use 5-20s integration on camera similar to the usb

Last edited by ChrisV; 28-07-2016 at 11:20 PM.
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  #156  
Old 31-07-2016, 02:28 PM
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Stonius

An example of live aligning/stacking using sharpcap of the Lagoon Nebula on 25 July 6.20pm. These are captures during live viewing with no post-processing. Used an 80mm refractor (I think ~F4 with focal reduction) with the ASI224MC USB camera:

- the 1st is 1x 8sec exposure
- the 2nd is 24x 8sec exposures stacked using sharpcap
So I just sit there and watched the images stack. And tweak the histogram while viewing. I went out to a stack of 65x with this one, but for live viewing 8 - 32 is enough.

Chris

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonius View Post
Interesting thread. I wonder if it's possible to stack images of DSO's captured from the video stream. Essentially applying a planetary work flow to DSO'S?
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Last edited by ChrisV; 31-07-2016 at 06:14 PM.
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  #157  
Old 31-07-2016, 11:40 PM
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I'm assuming this must be from an EQ mounted scope, otherwise 8 secs would surely trail the stars.

And if that's the case, I'm starting to think the distinction between video astronomy with stacked subs and actual astrophotography is vanishingly small. Am I missing something here?

Markus
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  #158  
Old 01-08-2016, 07:42 AM
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I'm using an EQ mount. Had it before i started video. but many or even most video astro people use alt-az mounts as easier to setup (a few brave souls don't even use tracking mounts - but they are crazy). With short subs no star trails especially with short focal length scopes. Look here for shots by others
http://www.cloudynights.com/topic/14...0#entry7353729
Plus there's a thread above that with pics of the setups they use.

It aint astrophotography. Compare my lagoon to those in the astrophotography threads - they get much more detail and lower noise. But this is live and in colour.

I wouldn't recommend video to someone just starting astro. The camera is an extra learning curve. And your scope dictates what sort of objects you can see.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonius View Post
I'm assuming this must be from an EQ mounted scope, otherwise 8 secs would surely trail the stars.

And if that's the case, I'm starting to think the distinction between video astronomy with stacked subs and actual astrophotography is vanishingly small. Am I missing something here?

Markus

Last edited by ChrisV; 02-08-2016 at 05:57 PM.
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  #159  
Old 03-08-2016, 04:54 PM
OffGrid (Steve)
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My Revolution Imager R2 arrived yesterday ( Tuesday ) but I was not home to collect so picked it up from the local PO today.
It was ordered on Monday evening AEST last week. Not lost in transit and in good shape.
Well done Tim Fowler of Orange County Telescope, USPS and of course OzPost.
With particular special thanks to Deb for my early birthday prezzy.

Given the cloud cover that arrived in advance, it may be a little while before Deb and I are getting first light on DSO's.

Will give some feedback when I get this little cam visual in the LX90.

Steve
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  #160  
Old 10-08-2016, 10:29 PM
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Hey Kevin (post #152) FOV for any camera in a scope is very close to ...

60
---------------------------------------
(FL of scope / Sensor biggest mm)

The important thing is you do not have to be precise at all in the calc. Nearest roundings works just as well.

Examples ...

APS/C Canon sensor is 22.2mm x 14.8mm so the biggest mm dimension is 22.2mm. If your scope is 1000mm focal length then 1000 is easily divided if we round 22.2mm down to 20. So 1000/20 = 50. Then 60 / 50 is 1.2 degrees FOV.

If a sensor was 8mm on the longest edge then 1000mm FL / 8 is roughly 120, so the FOV is 60 / 120 = 0.5 degrees.

cheers
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