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  #121  
Old 29th May 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

That's a good step upwards! I'd be interested to know more about the exposure details and how you attached the camera to the scope. I assume you 'dodged' the areas around the moons, to make them more prominent, but it rather distracts from the main image
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  #122  
Old 29th May 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Yes I did us PS to increase the exposure on the 3 moons which were very feint. They were distorted as well due to the stacking. It was a very warm night last night and there was some atmospheric disturbance due to the heat haze. It was also a full moon. To get even more detail it needs to be clear and crisp with no moon. When conditions like that happen again I will have another go. At least its better than my 1st attempt which is a bit embarrassing.

I terms of exposure I set the camera in manual. ISO 200, then used Olympus capture to take a series of 12 shots at 1/100th sec each. The scope has a fixed Focal length of 550mm and a fixed aperture of 100mm. So getting the correct exposure is a bit of trial and error your only variable is shutter speed. Live view on Olympus Capture is a great benefit and helped me choose the right speed 1/100th sec
Also the scope was on a sturdy equatorial mount that was tracking at sidereal rate.

You can attach the camera to the scope in two ways.
1. Get a M4/3 to T-Adapter and a T-Adapter to 1.25" adapter and simply plug in to the standard 1.25 mounting hole. T-Adapters are a common standard used for astrophotography. They work but can be prone to wobbles due to the weight of the camera hanging on the end. Also for wide field shots the stars end up being stretched around the perimeter of the frame when using a refractor scope.

2. Get a field flattener for your specific refractor scope to solve the star stretching. The field flattener creates a perfectly flat image field at an exact distance from the flange face, in my case its 63mm, but all scopes are different. The challenge is to use adapters / extensions to get the camera sensor exactly 63mm from the flange. This took a bit of research but I got there in the end using this combination.

The flattener for my scope has a M48 thread. I used a M48 to Nikon F-mount adapter which screws on and then a Nikon-F to M4/3 adapter and finally the Em1mk2. The thickness of this combination happens to work out at 63mm.

This is a much more rigid solution and ensures the field at the sensor is perfectly flat.
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Last edited by wornish; 29th May 2018 at 04:05 PM. Reason: reprocessed original to improve moons
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  #123  
Old 7th August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Another appeal to any mods that look in. Could you make this thread sticky, please. It would be good to collect the various night-sky pics scattered in different threads here.

I've been having a go at photographing Saturn, which is low in the Southern sky, at around 10:30 pm at present. Viewing conditions are far from ideal, with the sky still quite light and, from my house, there are street lights near the line of sight as well.

I used my E-M1 Mk ii with Pan/Leica 100-400 at the 400 mm end, wide open (f/6.4) The camera was tripod mounted with a remote release. I also used an EE-1 dot-sight, which makes it very easy to locate the subject quickly.

I viewed the subject on the rear screen (tilted to a convenient angle) and, with 14X magnification, set the focus manually.

I shot three bursts on high speed continuous, the first with mechanical shutter and the others electronic. 95 images in total

Examining the results showed there was considerable variation in sharpness between images, presumably due to atmospheric turbulence, although the mechanical shutter images seemed a little more variable.

I selected the single 'best looking' raw image for processing by means of the Raw Therapee converter, cropping and using LR de-convolution to minimise blurring. I also adjusted brightness/contrast, to separate the subject from the background.

My conclusion is that the image is pixel-limited, in terms of detail. The lens itself produced an excellent result, with negligible colour fringing, but there are simply not enough pixels across the disk to show any real detail.

I intend to try further processing on the batches of images but do not expect to change things much, except perhaps for a little extra smoothness overall.


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  #124  
Old 7th August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

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Originally Posted by MikeOxon View Post
Another appeal to any mods that look in. Could you make this thread sticky, please. It would be good to collect the various night-sky pics scattered in different threads here.

I've been having a go at photographing Saturn, which is low in the Southern sky, at around 10:30 pm at present. Viewing conditions are far from ideal, with the sky still quite light and, from my house, there are street lights near the line of sight as well.

I used my E-M1 Mk ii with Pan/Leica 100-400 at the 400 mm end, wide open (f/6.4) The camera was tripod mounted with a remote release. I also used an EE-1 dot-sight, which makes it very easy to locate the subject quickly.

I viewed the subject on the rear screen (tilted to a convenient angle) and, with 14X magnification, set the focus manually.

I shot three bursts on high speed continuous, the first with mechanical shutter and the others electronic. 95 images in total

Examining the results showed there was considerable variation in sharpness between images, presumably due to atmospheric turbulence, although the mechanical shutter images seemed a little more variable.

I selected the single 'best looking' raw image for processing by means of the Raw Therapee converter, cropping and using LR de-convolution to minimise blurring. I also adjusted brightness/contrast, to separate the subject from the background.

My conclusion is that the image is pixel-limited, in terms of detail. The lens itself produced an excellent result, with negligible colour fringing, but there are simply not enough pixels across the disk to show any real detail.

I intend to try further processing on the batches of images but do not expect to change things much, except perhaps for a little extra smoothness overall.
Great image. You are absolutely right it is pixel limited. Even with a 2000mm lens you will have the same issue. Its simple maths. To get the best images of planets people switch to using video where they can easily capture say 1000 or more frames and then use software to select the best ones and stack them. Using this approach with a small sensor like a webcam makes a huge difference. M4/3 sensors are just too big unfortunately, and its even worse for Full frame.
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  #125  
Old 8th August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

For anyone interested in night sky photography, I strongly recommend Roger N Clark's website http://www.clarkvision.com/


See, in particular, his article about the characteristics of digital cameras : http://www.clarkvision.com/articles/...o-photography/


Apart from lots of inspiring photos, his site is a mine of technical information. One point he makes is that: "Contrary to popular internet belief, larger sensor cameras have little to do with sensitivity. We often read on the internet that full frame cameras are more sensitive and that they are better at low light photography. This is a misunderstanding of the light gathering of lens and sensor. A larger format ENABLES one to use a larger lens. It is the lens that collects the light; the sensor is just a bucket to collect the light delivered by the lens"


This is why webcams are often used with telescopes for planet photography. If the image does not cover the sensor area, you are wasting most of the pixels.
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Last edited by MikeOxon; 8th August 2018 at 11:57 AM. Reason: additional information
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  #126  
Old 17th August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

This is a good set of Links for software apps used in astrophotography.
The good news is they are all free.

https://sites.google.com/site/astropipp/useful-links
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  #127  
Old 22nd August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

East Veil Nebula
No Olympus product used in taking this but wanted to share the image. (Larger version on My Flickr page)
The was taken last night using my 550mm scope and a ZWO ASI1600MM mono camera. It was done using narrow band filters. 6 x 300sec shots with Hydrogen alpha filter
and 6 x 300sec shots with Oxygen III filter. Then combined into an RGB image.

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  #128  
Old 22nd August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

I think you have a very striking image and am amazed by what can be achieved with relatively simple equipment.


Roger Clark, whom I mentioned in a recent post (above), writes a lot about colour in night sky images - see http://www.clarkvision.com/articles/...st-processing/


I find it a difficult to decide how to display colour in night-sky photos for several reasons. It is a fact that 'colour' is a quality constructed by the human brain and not a property of objects as such. It's complicated further by the fact that the sensors in our eyes do not record much wavelength-dependent information in dim light, so colour perception is very limited at night. Hence, the 'colour' in our photographs has to be an interpretation of what we would probably see, if the light from the sky were a lot brighter.



Because you have used two narrow band filters, there is no gradation of colours between the different areas of your image and this has left me with a feeling that I'm looking through 3D glasses. I wonder if it would be worth blending in some information from an unfiltered image as well. to produce a smoother gradation of tones throughout the image, which might satisfy the brain's idea of how coloured images should look?
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  #129  
Old 22nd August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

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Originally Posted by MikeOxon View Post
I think you have a very striking image and am amazed by what can be achieved with relatively simple equipment.


Roger Clark, whom I mentioned in a recent post (above), writes a lot about colour in night sky images - see http://www.clarkvision.com/articles/...st-processing/


I find it a difficult to decide how to display colour in night-sky photos for several reasons. It is a fact that 'colour' is a quality constructed by the human brain and not a property of objects as such. It's complicated further by the fact that the sensors in our eyes do not record any wavelength-dependent information in dim light, so colour perception is very limited at night. Hence, the 'colour' in our photographs has to be an interpretation of what we would probably see, if the light from the sky were a lot brighter.



Because you have used two narrow band filters, there is no gradation of colours between the different areas of your image and this has left me with a feeling that I'm looking through 3D glasses. I wonder if it would be worth blending in some information from an unfiltered image as well. to produce a smoother gradation of tones throughout the image, which might satisfy the brain's idea of how coloured images should look?
I agree the whole visualisation process is a mine field and down to personal taste and also fashion.

This so far is Bi-colour made up using HOO
R = Ha
G = OIII
B = OIII

I could add a SII image stack and that might help but there isn't much there in this nebula.

I plan on getting more data and capture another 6 or so of each and then getting 6 Luminance shots and creating a LRGB image. This will help smooth the transitions, I hope.

The standard palettes in common use are
HOS where Ha = R, OII = G and SII = B

or the Hubble Palette which is SHO

or the HOO palette

People then seem to play with mix ratios to bring out what they want.

Getting a clear spell is the biggest challenge as I have to set up and take down every session. Last night all the steps worked which is a very unusual. You need a lot of patience in this hobby.
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Old 22nd August 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

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I agree the whole visualisation process is a mine field and down to personal taste and also fashion .........

Indeed Looking at your image again, I think it's the absence of any yellow in the surrounding stars that my brain is 'noticing'.



The image is more than just the nebula and there should be a much wider variety of hues in the surrounding objects. I realise that you are using a monochrome camera but some shots to broaden the spectrum for these objects might help.


Clear skies may, however, be in short supply in the near future!
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  #131  
Old 29th September 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

This thread has gone very quiet so I thought I would share a pic I did last night. ( Sorry its not using Olympus gear)

I am still learning to do narrowband imaging. This is Ha, OIII, OIII combination. (1.5 Hours total exposure time).

Part of the Heart Nebula, its too big to get into one image using my setup. Now have to learn how to do mosaics.

This astro stuff is challenging.



Bigger Version here

https://flic.kr/p/2bx8k6c
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  #132  
Old 29th September 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Wow, some image......and patience....
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Old 11th October 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

The extra detail captured using a dedicated mono astro camera is significant. This image is a stack of 10 x 500sec exposures using Ha ( Hydrogen Alpha) narrowband filter and a further 3 x 500sec exposures using OIII (Oxygen 3) filter. Total integration time 6500 secs.

No moon last night and everything worked for once.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/228882...posted-public/
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Last edited by wornish; 13th October 2018 at 07:12 AM. Reason: Re Edited
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Old 11th October 2018
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Your deep-space photos are stunning, Dave. My son has recently acquired an astronomical telescope, so I'm looking forward to 'helping' him during the Winter nights to come
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

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Your deep-space photos are stunning, Dave. My son has recently acquired an astronomical telescope, so I'm looking forward to 'helping' him during the Winter nights to come
Warning if he gets the bug your wallet will suffer.
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