Jump to content


Photo

Cygnus on Provia 400x

  • Please log in to reply
15 replies to this topic

#1 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 18 April 2013 - 10:25 PM

This is a photo that I took that ended up as the background on the front cover of my book (see the link in my signature below). It was taken in about 2006, with a Nikon F and a 50mm f/1.4 lens (set to f/2.8, probably). I hand guided with a 12.5mm cross-hair eyepiece on an 80mm f/11 refractor. It's probably about ten or fifteen minutes of exposure.

I really need to find the scan on the DVD I have, and print this out. I posted a fairly large copy on my website some time ago, and just went and clicked through to the largest version. Tiny stars!

Attached Files



#2 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 18 April 2013 - 10:28 PM

Hmmm... Somehow the link didn't work (I probably forgot to refresh.) Click it once you're there to see the largest version.

#3 THEPLOUGH

THEPLOUGH

    ELEVEN Grandchildren; FIVE Ducklings

  • *****
  • Posts: 18158
  • Joined: 11 Jan 2008
  • Loc: Carlisle, Cumbria, ENGLAND

Posted 19 April 2013 - 06:18 AM

:bow: :bow: :like:

#4 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 21 April 2013 - 11:12 PM

Lots of detail there for a short exposure. What scanner did you use?
Nice stars - tight. I wish Provia 400F was still around.

#5 Giorgos

Giorgos

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 177
  • Joined: 14 Jan 2011
  • Loc: Athens, Greece

Posted 22 April 2013 - 01:31 PM

All the fine films are gone... Nice pic indeed!

#6 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 22 April 2013 - 09:20 PM

For astro work - yes they are - except for that stack of E200 in my freezer.

igor

#7 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 22 April 2013 - 09:22 PM

You took this in 2006. The article on the new Astrotrack with a 350 digital modified camera & lens shows some wide field shots. Yes I am partial to film but do acknowledge digital as being better for "Some" photography. However, those digital shots do not hold a candle to our best film frames shown here. Is it just me? Anyone else looked at that article?

#8 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 23 April 2013 - 11:14 AM

Thanks for all the comments!

Actually, this was taken with 400x, not 400f. 400x is still available.

I used one of my brother-in-law's two scanners: either the Nikon 35mm scanner, or the Nikon multi-format Coolscan 9000.

For my faulty memory, 2006 is a long time ago, so I'm mostly guessing on the exposure time. The original had a much more purple hue to it, which I corrected in Photoshop.

I agree about some aspects of film versus digital. It seems that many digital shots blow out the star color. And the noise levels that some people find acceptable... well, I don't. One thing I wonder about is whether part of the problem is that folks are taking lots of short images under not-very-dark skies, and then processing them more heavily then they really ought to.

I think there is still definitely a place for film in astrophotography, especially wide-field on medium format (even though this one is 35mm). It's true that folks are getting great wide-field images by creating mosaics of smaller images, but that can take weeks, and just doesn't look the same. I'm in the process of getting approval to build an observatory, and I hope to try some medium format shots once I get it done. (I'll try digital, too.)

#9 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 23 April 2013 - 08:14 PM

Hope that approval comes thru. Township or by the Mistress of the Household? Either way - a tough go. An OB is probably the single most item that will give the best images. Mount on a solid pier - drift aligned and bugs worked out. Makes all the difference - even for visual. What type are you considering?

I had a Pod - but now have a roll off. Prefer the roll off personally. Have a look. http://www.pbase.com/pentax67/inbox

igor

#10 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 23 April 2013 - 09:58 PM

I'm hoping to build the observatory in the school district forest, between two small towns here in western Wisconsin. I'm on the school board, and I presented my idea at the last meeting. I'll be donating about $3500 worth of astro gear, and putting the rest of my stuff on 'semi-permanent loan' (it will stay here as long as I don't move away). I have both an Atlas and a G-11 mount, both of which will be on piers. I've got a dozen scopes, including a 6-inch f/10 Jaegers, and will have a 14-inch f/4.5 reflector when I finish building it in the next few months.

I'll also work with the schools on astronomy education. I already bring my Starlab portable planetarium to all the fourth grade classes every year, and have for several years, so most of the kids know me a bit already. I think it will get approved at the next meeting, in a couple of weeks. Then we'll start looking for funding to build it. That may take a while, but there are ideas out there.

Skies at the site are 'green' on the darkness scale used on ClearDarkSky. No yard or street lights; there are only a couple of houses within a mile, and their lights are blocked by trees. The views will be open all around the sky, above about 10 degrees high. I'll provide lots of opportunities for shared outreach (my astronomy club will help, I bet), but I don't think anyone will mind if I head out there alone sometimes. :)

I have a modded Canon 500D for use with both lenses and scopes, and I have a 4x5 Crown Graphic and a Mamiya RB67. I used to have a Mamiya 645 1000s, and took some great astro shots with it (I need to scan those). I'm always selling one thing to buy another, so the 645 is gone, but I'm thinking of getting either a Mamiya 645 AFD, or a Pentax 67 system.

The AFD, because I dream of medium format digital (though I'll probably never be able to afford it), but also, because the M645 manual focus lenses can be used on it, are inexpensive, and are also fast to fairly fast: there's an 80mm f/1.9, and I was very pleased with the 150mm f/3.5, even wide open. Another plus, the smaller-than-6x7 format means the film is held flatter in the backs. One more advantage to the smaller format is that it might be possible to use it on a wider variety of scopes, though a focuser upgrade would cost a lot.

The advantage of the Pentax 67 is, of course, the larger format. It also has a wider range of excellent, fast lenses. And it is far cheaper than the AFD (I'm not the only one who dreams of medium format digital. The bodies have really gone up in price, since there are so many digital backs that can be used directly with them.)

I've been out of film astrophotography for a while, though I took some 6x12 daytime shots on a trip to Arizona last year. I put these old astro shots of mine up on this forum after seeing all the great images others have posted here. I've read some comments that color film is on the way out, but is that really true? I prefer color. The remaining emulsions may not be as good for astrophotography, but do others think 120 color film may actually go away?

Wow! I've gone all over with this post; sorry about that!

#11 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 23 April 2013 - 10:04 PM

Huh! And after that epic post, I didn't even answer Nebhunter's question: it will be a roll-off roof; I like being under the open sky. (And I went to your link: what a sweet set-up you have!)

#12 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 24 April 2013 - 08:18 PM

I thank you. Still a work in progress for my OB. I'm hoping to get a cheap solid body camper trailer to park beside the OB. Move the bunk and kitchenette into the trailer. When the dew hits hard, the hanging clothes and bunk get wet.

You have quite the project there. Great outreach and I wish you well in going forward with this. The MamaMia camera typically has excellent lenses and is a great system. Go with your heart. Pentax is good as well, and lots of lenses coming cheap on the "bay" now. But you gotta go with the gut.

I don't think colour film will go away. Not for quite awhile yet. They will cut it back to where only a few basic films remain, and as long as there are LF users out there I'm thinking Fuji will keep the transparency films going. Kodak - anyone's guess at this point in time.

Please do scan and post more of your film shots. I'm betting there are a lot of guys in the other forums with astro films that need scanning.

#13 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 24 April 2013 - 09:30 PM

I had scans of most of my film on an external hard drive that recently fried (I should have head them in at least two places, I know). I hope to re-scan them.

My brother-in-law let me know today that his Nikon Coolscan 9000 would not power up. He doesn't do much film anymore, but still has over a thousand medium format transparancies he wants to scan. He checked with Nikon, and they have discontinued the 9000 (and I cannot find anywhere that they plan to replace it), but they will repair it for him, for just over $400. They sell used for $2500, and can still be bought new for about twice that, so he figures it's worth it.

Any suggestions on a decent scanner still being made?

#14 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 25 April 2013 - 12:44 PM

Yes - this appears to be "the" scanner now. http://plustek.com/u...opticfilm-120//

It will do up to 6x12 in MF plus 35. I wish it did 4x5 as well but... I believe it is around $2000 including SilverFast software which is by far the best scanner software out there as far as I'm concerned.

The specifications put this model above the 9000. How much of that we can actually use is the question. The web and monitors won't do it justice, but if large prints are to be made - then yes.

Nothing else new has appeared on the market for awhile now. I got the Canon 9000f on recommendation from D. Brooks and here is that article if you are looking for something less expensive but good quality.

http://fotografx.blo...h?q=canon 9000f

I have this scanner - but stress that it will only produce good scans when bundled with SilverFast. Stock software is just that - stock.

igor

#15 PaulEK

PaulEK

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 680
  • Joined: 25 May 2008
  • Loc: Wisconsin

Posted 25 April 2013 - 08:45 PM

I did some reading about the Plustek 120 today. If I had the funds, I'd go for that one. But it just came on the market, and has already been taken off, due to some glitches. It's kind of a drag that, even if it replaces the now discontinued Nikon Coolscan 9000, it will be about the only premium scanner available.

The main reason I'd like to do more medium format astrophotography is the potential for large prints.

#16 Nebhunter

Nebhunter

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1926
  • Joined: 04 Oct 2003
  • Loc: Frostbite Falls

Posted 25 April 2013 - 10:25 PM

Wow - they have delayed introduction by about 2 years since the promo on it to get the bugs out. Now - more bugs. It's like the old days when a new model car was introduced. Don't buy it until year 3.

The Canon 9000f is a good scanner for the price. But it runs out of steam at 2,400 dpi and scanning above that produces nothing but larger files. So there are limitations. Fixing the Nikon makes sense.






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics