I was intrigued by the comment that what is posted in this forum is trending to AP, since my gut sense is that in this forum there is far, far less emphasis on the quality of the picture, and much more about "gee, see what I saw". And because of these two different objectives, the general content of the two forums (bad Latin, I know), is likely to be much different, even though we might use very much the same gear.
So I compared the integration times (and visual images) of the October challenges in the Beginning and Intermediate imaging forum to those of the October challenge in this forum. I take these postings to be surrogates for the objectives of the respective user communities, and that they represent the "best" of those objectives.
The results are instructive. The median integration time in the Beginning and Intermediate Forum was 240 minutes, while that of the EAA forum was 7.25 minutes. The chart below shows the range in integration times of the 33 B&I images and the 23 of the EAA forum. There is almost no overlap - the longest EAA image was taken in a red zone with a relatively small aperture instrument. Visual inspection shows, as can be expected, a marked difference in image quality.
This suggests that the equipment is used in different ways in each of the forums. In the BII forum , I suspect low gain, long integration, multiple channels on a guided equatorial mount is the standard. Ask about an Alt-Az mount, and you'll be told "not possible".
In EAA, unguided, alt-az photos are common - maybe even the norm.
Whatever we do in this forum it is certainly not AP as practiced in the other forums, and mixing the two together invites confusion.
If you feel compelled to need a limit, I'd vote for a 20 minute limit - it's "near real time" enough for most of us who actually use this forum, and makes the forum more user friendly - no need to post an image elsewhere and provide links.
Edited by nic35, 21 November 2019 - 12:34 PM.