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Astrophotography and Sketching >> Beginning and Intermediate Imaging

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DismalScientist
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Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
First pic of Saturn with new mount
      #5870238 - 05/18/13 09:03 PM Attachment (48 downloads)

I recently got a CG-5 mount for my old Celestron C8. After some collimating, I ended up being blown away by Saturn. I took this pic using SharpCap, a Microsoft LifeCam HD5001, and a 2x barlow. I stacked with AS!2 and processed that image in Registax6.

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Madratter
Postmaster


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5870303 - 05/18/13 09:33 PM Attachment (32 downloads)

Very nice. I took the liberty of color balancing it a bit. I'll pull it down if you want me to.

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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: Madratter]
      #5870307 - 05/18/13 09:36 PM

No, leave it up! It looks good. Can you tell me what you did? I'm still learning the whole process.

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DaemonGPF
Redonkulous
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Reged: 03/22/08

Loc: Aurora Colorado
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5870314 - 05/18/13 09:40 PM

Nice work!

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Madratter
Postmaster


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5870329 - 05/18/13 09:49 PM

Quote:

Can you tell me what you did? I'm still learning the whole process.




Unfortunately, I don't have a cook book answer here. I just noticed a color cast that didn't look quite right to me. I pulled up Photoshop and using the color balance tool, moved it towards cyan instead of red, and yellow instead of blue.

I did not care for what auto-color did in Photoshop. That left it way too green for my taste.


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MaestroMyth
professor emeritus
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Reged: 02/16/06

Loc: CT
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: Madratter]
      #5870333 - 05/18/13 09:50 PM

Looks like you have a great C8! Beautiful shot, congrats.

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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: MaestroMyth]
      #5870336 - 05/18/13 09:53 PM

Thanks!

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WarmWeatherGuy
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/27/11

Loc: Orlando, FL 28° N, 81° W
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5870950 - 05/19/13 09:14 AM Attachment (14 downloads)

I thought I would take a stab at it. I got rid of the excessive red and it turns out there is not much color left. Did you use a red filter?

I also sharpened it a little. Everything I did was in RegiStax.

This is a really good picture for a C8.


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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: WarmWeatherGuy]
      #5872921 - 05/20/13 12:53 AM Attachment (12 downloads)

Hey WWG, no I didn't use a filter. I don't have any of those yet. What filter would you recommend for Saturn/Jupiter/Mars? Also, I took another stab at the color. What do you guys think?

Also, I was quite surprised at how well my picture came out. It is an older 1980s version SPC8. I recently collimated it, and that seemed to make a good improvement over previous results.


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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5872948 - 05/20/13 01:13 AM

I should add that I restacked the avi and tried again.

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WarmWeatherGuy
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/27/11

Loc: Orlando, FL 28° N, 81° W
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5872982 - 05/20/13 01:47 AM Attachment (13 downloads)

I've heard you can use different color filters to bring out different features on the different planets but I think that would be for a monochrome image. I wouldn't use any color filter for making a color image. I've also heard that you might want an IR cutoff filter but that is probably already installed.

I have a LifeCam Cinema webcam and I checked the software that comes with it and there is no way to adjust the red, green, and blue intensities individually so maybe you have the same problem. Your Saturn is a little pink.

I use the NexImage 5 and it makes everything look green. The software that comes with it allows me to adjust the red, green, and blue separately. I'm learning how much to turn down the green and turn up the blue to get something that looks more natural.

You can adjust the color afterwards but the pictures are only 8 bit so you lose intensity resolution. I think it is better to get it right, or close to right, when recording.

I notice that some people get really good images for their "first" astrophoto. Here is my first Saturn using a C8 back in July 2011. Actually I lied. My first Saturn was a blob with a line through it. The point is that you should be happy with your first Saturn. Or maybe I should just feel bad about my early stuff.


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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: WarmWeatherGuy]
      #5872987 - 05/20/13 01:51 AM Attachment (13 downloads)

Haha... I should clarify. This is my first Saturn with a mount that can track. Previously, I was just aiming the telescope and trying to hold the planet in view as best as I could. Here is my "first" Saturn that I even had someone else stack for me

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WarmWeatherGuy
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/27/11

Loc: Orlando, FL 28° N, 81° W
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5872991 - 05/20/13 01:57 AM Attachment (10 downloads)

Here is my first Saturn using the Meade DSI-II color camera. I might have actually taken a picture using film a couple decades earlier.

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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: WarmWeatherGuy]
      #5872999 - 05/20/13 02:07 AM

Hey, I see rings!

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WarmWeatherGuy
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Reged: 08/27/11

Loc: Orlando, FL 28° N, 81° W
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5873016 - 05/20/13 02:25 AM Attachment (13 downloads)

I found my very first Saturn. I used a C8, a Nikon F2, and black-and-white film. This would be around 1989.

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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: WarmWeatherGuy]
      #5873028 - 05/20/13 02:45 AM

Wow, it is really remarkable how far technology has come. It is probably easy to take for granted the fact that we can just throw a cheap webcam into the eyepiece and get a decent picture. I have to admit - after my recent Saturn pics came out I felt like I was cheating somehow.

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WarmWeatherGuy
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/27/11

Loc: Orlando, FL 28° N, 81° W
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5873035 - 05/20/13 02:53 AM

I know. I had to take my film to the drug store and wait a week or so to get the results. I had to know what exposure to use or waste a few bucks and a week or so. Now we get 10 (or more) frames per second and we just turn the brightness knob until it looks about right.

I remember in college in 1980 they showed us some pictures of Jupiter taken by Voyager. I had never seen Jupiter anywhere near that clear. Now we can take similar pictures from our driveway as a hobby.


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REC
Post Laureate
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Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: NC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5873425 - 05/20/13 10:33 AM

Nice pic and I have a quick question for you. Was the barlow used with the scope at prime focus? So instead od a f/2000mm lens it was f/4000 then and that would equal 80x. That would still be a small image, did you crop and enlarge this pic?

Thanks,

Bob


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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount new [Re: REC]
      #5873518 - 05/20/13 11:27 AM Attachment (12 downloads)

Hey Bob,

I dropped the 2x barlow into my star diagonal and then put the webcam into the barlow. I thought this was F/20, but maybe I'm wrong (please let me know if I am). I wanted to skip the diagonal and put the webcam into the OTA directly, but I had trouble finding Saturn. I will try that again later.

I used SharpCap to record the video in 1280x720. At first it was recording in 640x480. When I changed it to 1280x720, the image appeared much larger on my screen. I have attached a picture of what it looked like on my screen. I never had to enlarge it for the "final product". I actually shrunk it down in some pics to make it a sharper image. The only cropping occurred when I used PIPP or AS!2, which chops out the background for faster stacking.

I hope this helps. I'm still learning so it is possible I didn't answer your question precisely.

Brian


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DismalScientist
member


Reged: 04/09/13

Loc: Columbia, SC
Re: First pic of Saturn with new mount [Re: DismalScientist]
      #5873528 - 05/20/13 11:30 AM

Here is one of the videos that I captured: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKwNoY7j3dI

Edited by DismalScientist (05/20/13 11:33 AM)


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