So about 3 weeks ago, I bought my first telescope (CPC 1100, regular, not the HD) after a couple years of research and saving. Originally I was planning on visual use only, but along with the scope I bought the adapters for attaching my canon 60D unmodded to dabble and see what I could get. Turns out I am now addicted to ap as the first shots I got were pretty good, to me anyway! So now I really wanna go all in, however I’m not rich so I don’t have the funds to go “all in” in one go. Plus I imagine it’s better to hone skill rather than have all this nice equipment you don’t know how to use! Now, with all that said my current equipment is as follows..
CPC 1100 telescope
Stock Canon 60D DSLR ( Canon 5D classic should be arriving sometime next week, so let’s go with that since it’ll be my primary AP camera once it arrives)
Equipment soon to be acquired..
Celestron f/6.3 focal reducer/corrector
Celestron HD pro wedge
Equipment I’ll acquire as soon as budget allows
Guide scope/camera or OAG (leaning towards OAG with the research I’ve done on long focal length SCTs)
Now for my actual question. Earlier this week we’ve been fortunate enough in New England to have a string of clear nights due to high pressure over the area… My first photo shoot on Monday night I tried taking 50 or so 30 second exposures at iso 1250 of the ring nebula and sombrero galaxy. They looked really good in the camera view finder, when I got home, I had spaghetti-O stars. Dang, I was out of foscus the whole shoot! Luckily the following night was also clear and dry with little to no wind so I used my cameras 10 times digital zoom and made sure I got the stars down to a nice small point.. collimation looks pretty dead on also. Nice. Time to shoot. Did the same thing, same iso, all 30 second long exposures. When I got Home to stack in DSS it turns out my picture quality wasn’t quite good enough for the program to recognize and use the stars. I got the “can only stack one frame” deal. So, figuring the tracking wasn’t able to keep up with 30 seconds, I tried two nights later 15 second exposures at iso 1650. This is where I was able to get the shots you see posted of the Hercules star cluster and the ring planetary nebula... I stacked 5 15s exposures for Hercules, 7 for the ring nebula. Also added darks, bias, and flats. I think they came out pretty good for a first attempt, but I hear even with out a wedge I should be able to get up to a minute exposure time before field rotation is obvious, so the fact I could only go 15 seconds makes me wonder.. is the DSLR on the back of the scope throwing off my balance that much where it’s effecting my tracking making anything over 15-20 seconds undoable? Or am I just missing something? Thanks in advance for any feedback and/or advice! Clear skys everyone!!
oh, and the picture of the sombrero galaxy I threw in there was just a single three minute exposure that I touched up in Lightroom that I thought came out pretty good considering...