Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Some NV Phone Shots

NV
  • Please log in to reply
14 replies to this topic

#1 Eddgie

Eddgie

    ISS

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 23255
  • Joined: 01 Feb 2006

Posted 11 January 2019 - 01:24 PM

Ray (who so graciously gifted me a cell phone holder ) is going to be upset, but I promise that on a longer session, I am going to use that gift.

 

Just a quick one though..  Last night, I was responding to a post on the Cats forum where a guy has a C14 and is finding that it is becoming too much effort to use.   I suggested he try to use some lifting straps to make it easier, but of course having owned a C14, I know that the total effort of this kind of scope makes it harder and harder to face the task of getting it out and then in again, and the OP of that thread had to bring the C14 down and up a flight of stairs.

 

Of course when I read things like that, I can't also help by offer NV as a possible future when the OP does indeed find that the C14 has gotten to be too much.  I recommended that when that happened, he should consider downsizing and punching it up with a NV eyepiece.

 

After that, I was all hyped up, so I grabbed my Comet Catcher with its new (printed by me on my new 3D printer) light shield, which worked amazingly well.  I have a lot of problems with neighbors lights spilling down the very short overhang of the Comet Catcher.  (I can send the STL file.)  I figured I would then go back in and post them so he could see what I can see (and I did post them in that thread).

 

CC with Light Shield.jpg

 

Anyway, here are a couple of shots using my new Galaxy S9.  My cheap Andriod phone gave it up during the holidays and I had been meaning to replace it anyway, so it was no big deal when the old one went for a swim.

 

These are heavily compressed to fit.

 

This one was taken with a 12nm filter, which meant a hugely shortened exposure time.  ISO 400 and .5 second. Clearly the phone must have been slightly tilted becuase the right side is out of focus, though there is some FC in the Comet Catcher.

 

Horse Head half second.jpg

 

This one is 5nm.  Far dimmer, but look at the amount of nebula in this picture!!! This one is 1 second and ISO 125.  Now what I like about this image is that it very closely approximates the view at the eyepiece. There is a lot of faint nebula in this field. 

 

Horse Head 125 one second.jpg  

For comparison, here is the Ha overlay from Sky Safari showing a slighly larger field (field size fom Boren Simon 6".)

 

thumbnail_1547214792793 resize 45.jpg  

 

Now I like both of these.  The 12nm shot shows a lot more stars, but the 5nm shot really grabs the faint nebula!  

 

Ray, I promise that I am going to try the phone holder!  Kelly was asleep last night and I did not want to bump around in my man cabinet to get it out.

 

 

 

 

 

 


  • Jeff Morgan, Starman27, *skyguy* and 6 others like this

#2 Eddgie

Eddgie

    ISS

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 23255
  • Joined: 01 Feb 2006

Posted 11 January 2019 - 01:28 PM

The black print at the base of the Comet catcher is a failed light shield print.  I designed the shield to store on the back of the scope, and because the scope has that weird rounded base, it won't stand up on its own, so the light shield was designed to have a 25mm interior step so that when stored, it would extend past the bulge, and this would allow the scope to sit upright on the base.

 

Since I already had the failed print, I just cut off the bad part and then used this for a base.  When I travel though, the good light shield will store there and act as a base.

 

I am groovin  on the 3D printer. 


Edited by Eddgie, 11 January 2019 - 01:28 PM.

  • DMala likes this

#3 Eddgie

Eddgie

    ISS

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 23255
  • Joined: 01 Feb 2006

Posted 11 January 2019 - 01:29 PM

And I am not as good at taking pictures as most of you guys are.   I will try to improve. 



#4 GeezerGazer

GeezerGazer

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 759
  • Joined: 06 Jan 2005
  • Loc: Modesto, CA

Posted 12 January 2019 - 01:02 AM

Actually Ed, your photos are pretty darn good! wink.gif   I had to boost backlighting on my computer for the 5nm filter shot, but they both look good.  The printed light shield looks great!!! bow.gif  It's really easy to tilt a handheld phone... because there just isn't much surface for proper (perpendicular) registration between the phone and ocular.  But your images look better than most of my handheld images did.  About the bracket, give it a try when convenient; if it is a PITA, pass it on.  It did not arrive with any obligations.  

 

Were you using the S9 camera in Pro Mode, where you can set everything manually, or were the images taken in auto mode?

 

There are different levels of NV phonetography performance, all reliant on technology and/or accessories.  But the biggest boost for me came from using a tracking mount.  Seems like your Comet Catcher would be a perfect fit on your iOptron MT.  Then you'd be able to extend exposure times on the S9, lowering the ISO.  ALTHOUGH, improved images are not everyones goal.  Gavin has purposely tried to keep his images very close to what he can actually see through the NV ocular visually.  And I agree that this is really important, especially for non-NV members visiting the forum, so they don't have unreasonable expectations if they decide to try NV.  

 

On the other hand, I like to get all I can get out of my phone photos, because I often study them at home on the computer to see what detail I can wring out as I read about the object.  My post processing is mainly done on the phone with one or two clicks in iPhone's photo editing... pretty simple stuff.  But if I do that, I don't post them in the forum; they stay in my computer and a few go to my gallery.  I think what I like most about having images is being able to look at them any time... especially on cloudy nights when I can't observe.  They also simplify note taking and in my computer, I can see a progression as I scan through images of the the same object taken at different times and through different optics.  Observing is still my main goal... imaging is an included subset that is relatively simple, effective and fun. 

 

Gavin and I have discussed these issues a couple of times.  With phone camera improvements and more of us using very fast optical systems, it's easy to take a photo that exceeds what is visible at the NV ocular.  The photos I took a year ago hand holding the camera on a non-tracking mount with very short exposures were not quite as good as what I could see visually.  Using a tracking mount, NightCap camera app, the phone bracket and longer exposures with faster optical systems today, the unprocessed images are routinely better than what I can see visually.  


  • moshen, Gavster and DMala like this

#5 Gavster

Gavster

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 351
  • Joined: 07 Mar 2014

Posted 12 January 2019 - 04:31 AM

Actually Ed, your photos are pretty darn good! wink.gif   I had to boost backlighting on my computer for the 5nm filter shot, but they both look good.  The printed light shield looks great!!! bow.gif  It's really easy to tilt a handheld phone... because there just isn't much surface for proper (perpendicular) registration between the phone and ocular.  But your images look better than most of my handheld images did.  About the bracket, give it a try when convenient; if it is a PITA, pass it on.  It did not arrive with any obligations.  

 

Were you using the S9 camera in Pro Mode, where you can set everything manually, or were the images taken in auto mode?

 

There are different levels of NV phonetography performance, all reliant on technology and/or accessories.  But the biggest boost for me came from using a tracking mount.  Seems like your Comet Catcher would be a perfect fit on your iOptron MT.  Then you'd be able to extend exposure times on the S9, lowering the ISO.  ALTHOUGH, improved images are not everyones goal.  Gavin has purposely tried to keep his images very close to what he can actually see through the NV ocular visually.  And I agree that this is really important, especially for non-NV members visiting the forum, so they don't have unreasonable expectations if they decide to try NV.  

 

On the other hand, I like to get all I can get out of my phone photos, because I often study them at home on the computer to see what detail I can wring out as I read about the object.  My post processing is mainly done on the phone with one or two clicks in iPhone's photo editing... pretty simple stuff.  But if I do that, I don't post them in the forum; they stay in my computer and a few go to my gallery.  I think what I like most about having images is being able to look at them any time... especially on cloudy nights when I can't observe.  They also simplify note taking and in my computer, I can see a progression as I scan through images of the the same object taken at different times and through different optics.  Observing is still my main goal... imaging is an included subset that is relatively simple, effective and fun. 

 

Gavin and I have discussed these issues a couple of times.  With phone camera improvements and more of us using very fast optical systems, it's easy to take a photo that exceeds what is visible at the NV ocular.  The photos I took a year ago hand holding the camera on a non-tracking mount with very short exposures were not quite as good as what I could see visually.  Using a tracking mount, NightCap camera app, the phone bracket and longer exposures with faster optical systems today, the unprocessed images are routinely better than what I can see visually.  

Ray, our discussions on NV photography over the past year or so have been a lot of fun and developed my understanding significantly- thank you.

 

As you say, I’ve always been keen to try to make my images as close as possible to the actual eyepiece views. However, back in the summer when I had just received my new Huawei P20 Pro phone, my image quality suddenly jumped a level and started to routinely beat the eyepiece views by a noticeable margin. The key reasons were the ability to do exposures up to 30 seconds with my tracking mounts and the specialist mono lens of the huawei which took away all of the white balance issues I had been having with the samsung s9.

 

I think the pinnacle of this was my trip to Tenerife with my Photonis 4g monoculars and my TV85.  The attached image of the Veil (30 second exposure) shows some very fine detail (eg strands of nebulosity in Pickering’s triangle) that just weren’t there in the eyepiece view.

 

So when I got home I embarked on a quest to improve the real time eyepiece views so that these were much more like my phone images.

 

This involved several equipment acquisitions including a Gen 3 harder NV tube (photonis being gen 2 and thus has significantly less luminance gain), a Chroma Ha 5nm filter and fast reflector scopes such as the Tak Epsilon f3.3 130d and my skyvision t400 f4 dob. 

 

Using the 55mm plossl afocally I’m getting a system speed of around f1.5 is getting close to the f1.2 speed of my monoculars. At this speed I am now getting visual views that are much closer to my previous phone images. For phone images these very fast systems can cause some edge of field star distortions. So I’ve effectively got two different systems now, slower refractor setups for taking NV images and faster mirror setups for better at the eyepiece views. I’ve only had a couple of goes with NV with my dob so it’s still a work in progress but I’m hoping this setup will work for images as well as visual (probably with my 41mm pan)

Attached Thumbnails

  • 4F951B7C-248B-4DF7-BCF8-D80DC4BF8C59.jpeg

  • GeezerGazer, moshen, highfnum and 5 others like this

#6 AllanDystrup

AllanDystrup

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1329
  • Joined: 27 Sep 2012
  • Loc: Denmark

Posted 12 January 2019 - 04:48 AM

.

WOW, that's just an amazing resolution for NVD! --

you keep pushing the envelope of this technology Gavster !

And thank you for that! waytogo.gif

 

Still that off-axis aberration of the 55-Plössl, that is bothering me too. --

Shall be interesting to see to what degree the 41-Pan can remedy that.

 

     -- Allan


Edited by AllanDystrup, 12 January 2019 - 04:49 AM.

  • GeezerGazer and Gavster like this

#7 Gavster

Gavster

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 351
  • Joined: 07 Mar 2014

Posted 12 January 2019 - 05:12 AM

 

.

WOW, that's just an amazing resolution for NVD! --

you keep pushing the envelope of this technology Gavster !

And thank you for that! waytogo.gif

 

Still that off-axis aberration of the 55-Plössl, that is bothering me too. --

Shall be interesting to see to what degree the 41-Pan can remedy that.

 

     -- Allan

 

Thanks Allan. The 41mm pan does make a real difference off axis imo as per this thread...

https://www.cloudyni...netography-use/



#8 Eddgie

Eddgie

    ISS

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 23255
  • Joined: 01 Feb 2006

Posted 12 January 2019 - 08:57 AM

Actually Ed, your photos are pretty darn good! wink.gif   I had to boost backlighting on my computer for the 5nm filter shot, but they both look good.  The printed light shield looks great!!! bow.gif  It's really easy to tilt a handheld phone... because there just isn't much surface for proper (perpendicular) registration between the phone and ocular.  But your images look better than most of my handheld images did.  About the bracket, give it a try when convenient; if it is a PITA, pass it on.  It did not arrive with any obligations.  

 

Were you using the S9 camera in Pro Mode, where you can set everything manually, or were the images taken in auto mode?

 

Actually, the Galaxy S9 has a nearly flat back, but if the back is not flat, then the case that it is in is for sure flat.  I suspect that there may be some amount of focuser tilt, or possibly some field curvature in the lenses of the phones themselves.  I look at a lot of cell phone pictures and often I seem to see some defocus at the edge.   The Comet Catcher field though is not flat because even visually, I can see that the edges of the field are very slightly comatic and with a very slight enlargement of the aberrated blur.

 

But I seem to see that the edges of the field in the dob are not sharp either, but I have not tired the S9 with that scope yet and if it is clear tonight, I want to try it.

 

I used both the Pro mode and the Auto mode.  The dimmer picture above was taken with the Pro mode I think because the image was quite dim due to the 5nm filter.   The first image was with the 12nm and the view was so bright that I let auto mode pick just to see what it would do.

 

I do like to capture a picture that is representative of how the view looks in the eyepiece, but people would not believe the beauty of M42, which is far more amazing in the eyepiece than in pictures because of the faint structure in the core.  I do see more nebula in the pictures and that is amazing, but when I look at M42 and M43, what amazes me is the burled texture that is totally out of reach for visual observers using the typically small scopes most of them own. 

 

I do want to try the phone holder though, so looking forward to making it go.  Maybe tonight!

 

Thank you for the kind words and encouragement!


Edited by Eddgie, 12 January 2019 - 01:20 PM.

  • GeezerGazer likes this

#9 cnoct

cnoct

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 699
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2010
  • Loc: Hawai'i

Posted 12 January 2019 - 10:14 AM

The early trend towards smartphone pics, through NV, left me praying.gif it quickly would pass. It felt like these photo were giving NV users a blackeye.gif, it cringed quite a few times and on occasion there's a twinge. 

 

To those who've stuck with it, investing time and significant funds into acquiring the most advanced phones and software, I'm thankful for your passion and perseverance. 

 

Thank you to all who continually strive for excellence in the burgeoning cell phone photography. Really stunning stuff form all of you. applause.gif


  • GeezerGazer, moshen, Gavster and 2 others like this

#10 DMala

DMala

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1353
  • Joined: 02 Jun 2015

Posted 12 January 2019 - 10:40 AM

(...)  But the biggest boost for me came from using a tracking mount.  Seems like your Comet Catcher would be a perfect fit on your iOptron MT.  Then you'd be able to extend exposure times on the S9, lowering the ISO.  ALTHOUGH, improved images are not everyones goal.  Gavin has purposely tried to keep his images very close to what he can actually see through the NV ocular visually.  And I agree that this is really important, especially for non-NV members visiting the forum, so they don't have unreasonable expectations if they decide to try NV.  

 

On the other hand, I like to get all I can get out of my phone photos, because I often study them at home on the computer to see what detail I can wring out as I read about the object.  My post processing is mainly done on the phone with one or two clicks in iPhone's photo editing... pretty simple stuff.  (...)

 

 

(...) 

As you say, I’ve always been keen to try to make my images as close as possible to the actual eyepiece views.(...)

 

So when I got home I embarked on a quest to improve the real time eyepiece views so that these were much more like my phone images.

 

This involved several equipment acquisitions (...) So I’ve effectively got two different systems now, slower refractor setups for taking NV images and faster mirror setups for better at the eyepiece views. (...)

 

Very interesting considerations thanks, they made me think. As a beginner to night vision, and considering my general interests in astronomy, the ability to document photographically what I see with my eyes and my existing equipment is what matters the most right now, not much to push the limits of night vision photography. The main challenges I currently perceive are the weaknesses of the current camera/NV device connection options, and the possible inevitable need to upgrade in some way my phone soon, for which I have absolutely no other motivation especially if here in the US the best documented choice remains an Iphone with Nightcap. I wish I could use my Sony Alpha Nex 5 camera and some very limited and quick post-editing.


  • GeezerGazer and Gavster like this

#11 Jeff Morgan

Jeff Morgan

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 10143
  • Joined: 28 Sep 2003
  • Loc: Prescott, AZ

Posted 12 January 2019 - 05:23 PM

The early trend towards smartphone pics, through NV, left me praying.gif it quickly would pass. It felt like these photo were giving NV users a blackeye.gif, it cringed quite a few times and on occasion there's a twinge. 

 

I've been in the habit of grabbing any sort of NV adapter on sight, need it or not. (Never know what the future holds, and adapters are cheap.) So I saw TNVC has this little item:

 

https://tnvc.com/sho...ter-for-pvs-14/

 

Of course I picked it up. Sooner or later, I am going to get another DSLR camera.



#12 GeezerGazer

GeezerGazer

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 759
  • Joined: 06 Jan 2005
  • Loc: Modesto, CA

Posted 13 January 2019 - 07:49 PM

 I embarked on a quest to improve the real time eyepiece views so that these were much more like my phone images.

 

This involved several equipment acquisitions including a Gen 3 harder NV tube (photonis being gen 2 and thus has significantly less luminance gain), a Chroma Ha 5nm filter and fast reflector scopes such as the Tak Epsilon f3.3 130d and my skyvision t400 f4 dob. 

 

Using the 55mm plossl afocally I’m getting a system speed of around f1.5 is getting close to the f1.2 speed of my monoculars. At this speed I am now getting visual views that are much closer to my previous phone images. For phone images these very fast systems can cause some edge of field star distortions. So I’ve effectively got two different systems now, slower refractor setups for taking NV images and faster mirror setups for better at the eyepiece views. I’ve only had a couple of goes with NV with my dob so it’s still a work in progress but I’m hoping this setup will work for images as well as visual (probably with my 41mm pan)

Gavin, that image of the Veil is great, even with a soft edge from the Plossl; your images using the Panoptic do have much much improved edges.  Your selection of equipment and use of your P20 Pro has, as Cnoct describes, made an immense difference in the performance of phonetography efforts.  waytogo.gif  It is interesting how you have gone about improving the visual image to compare so favorably to longer exposure phone images.  It is a different route than I have taken, but one which I think is much more important to demonstrate to others what equipment works best for visual NV use.  

 

 

I've been in the habit of grabbing any sort of NV adapter on sight, need it or not. (Never know what the future holds, and adapters are cheap.) So I saw TNVC has this little item:

 

https://tnvc.com/sho...ter-for-pvs-14/

 

Jeff, I tried one these adapters with my D7100 and found that I preferred my phone... less fiddling, faster to take a photo, lighter weight, etc.  I think the difference is that I am a visual observer who likes taking snapshots with the phone, whereas using the Nikon seemed to be more of a dedicated effort.  The results can be stunning though, when using a full-frame or APS camera, clearly demonstrated in jdbastro's or Cnoct's gallery.  

 

Ed, the thing about using a tracking mount isn't necessary for visual NV use, but for phone snapshots, it gives the ability to use a longer exposure to gather the light necessary to show the subject better.  If you want the image to look like it did at the eyepiece, you can always shorten the exposure until it matches.  Tracking provides options that you can use or ignore... the convenience of a light weight, manual alt/az mount for visual use can't be ignored, but it does limit photo options.  My manual mount weighs more than my tracking mount... for me it's a no brainer! 

 

Off topic, but BTW, the Saguaro Astronomy Club is hosting another Messier Marathon this year, Mar 29-30.  I'm planning to go to see if I can photograph all 110 Messiers in one night.  If anyone is interested, you can get the information here:

 



#13 Solar storm

Solar storm

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 241
  • Joined: 05 Jul 2015
  • Loc: Iowa

Posted 14 January 2019 - 04:06 PM

Ed, 

 

Your light/dew shield is awesome!  I also have a Comet Catcher and that is seriously cool.  I have one of those floppy dew/light shields and it is a pain.



#14 Eddgie

Eddgie

    ISS

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 23255
  • Joined: 01 Feb 2006

Posted 14 January 2019 - 06:39 PM

Ed, 

 

Your light/dew shield is awesome!  I also have a Comet Catcher and that is seriously cool.  I have one of those floppy dew/light shields and it is a pain.

Thanks! Yeah, the focuser placement on the Comet Catcher makes it difficult to use those floppy shields.  I had constant problems with light from neighborhood porches getting into the focal plane (I often hand carry the CC around at night).

 

The shield is designed to self store on the opposite end. There is a 25mm internal lip that acts as a stop so that it does not go totally on to the OTA, but that stop was designed to allow me to stand it on end, which is an issue because of the curved rear casting on the CC.

 

I am happy to send you the stl file.   If you don't print, you might find someone on your neighborhood list serve that will print it for you.  It took me about 9 hours to print it (I used PETG but if you used PLA, would be faster). 

 

It works really well though.  Thanks for commenting. 



#15 Kevdog

Kevdog

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1789
  • Joined: 11 Jul 2012
  • Loc: Desert Hills, AZ

Posted 15 January 2019 - 11:25 AM

I've been in the habit of grabbing any sort of NV adapter on sight, need it or not. (Never know what the future holds, and adapters are cheap.) So I saw TNVC has this little item:

 

https://tnvc.com/sho...ter-for-pvs-14/

 

Of course I picked it up. Sooner or later, I am going to get another DSLR camera.

I would seriously look at the mirrorless cameras for your next go around.   You'll have a lot less bulk and weight hanging off the end.  An Olympus EM10 MKII is still a powerful camera, but weighs a lot less.   Or even the new Fuji X-Pro2.   

 

And if it was mainly for NVAP then you could get a body without a viewfinder for even less size/bulk.  Here are some comparisons for size.   You can put almost any camera in here to see the difference!

https://camerasize.c...33,730,650,ha,f




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics







Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics