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AstroSurface : software for images and video processing

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#126 LucienP

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Posted 06 June 2021 - 01:43 PM

What a nice piece of software Lucien!  I've only had a quick play with a test image and wavelets, but it produces very nice results imho.  Seems stable and has tonnes of features.  

Thanks a lot !

AstroSurface is not finished. You opinion is welcome for me !

 

Lucien


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#127 MunichAtNight

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Posted 12 June 2021 - 06:42 AM

... AstroSurface is not finished. ...

Hello Lucien,

 

I am just investigating your software, which looks by the way to be a great tool and I am very excited to do own first photos from Jupiter and Saturn with it.

 

Perhaps you can check the links to your tutorials (video1, 2, 3, 4 5) on your homepage, all links seems to be broken or lost! Perhhaps I use a somehow outdated version what was delivered from google? But I couldn't find or access your videos.

 

Keep on doing and managing your great software, many greetings from Germany - MunichAtNight - Ewald


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#128 LucienP

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Posted 13 June 2021 - 02:48 AM

Hello Ewald,

 

Yes !  Links are broken. This is problem with the the provider. I cannot repare it soon.

I have removed buttons for the moment.

There are some pdf in english at the bottom.

AstroSurface is still in evolution, sorry and thanks a lot. smile.gif

I'm working for more methods to Register images of Deep-Sky.

 

Best regards,

 

Lucien


Edited by LucienP, 13 June 2021 - 02:50 AM.


#129 LucienP

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Posted 13 June 2021 - 03:02 AM

Hello Lucien,

 

I am just investigating your software, which looks by the way to be a great tool and I am very excited to do own first photos from Jupiter and Saturn with it.

 

Perhaps you can check the links to your tutorials (video1, 2, 3, 4 5) on your homepage, all links seems to be broken or lost! Perhhaps I use a somehow outdated version what was delivered from google? But I couldn't find or access your videos.

 

Keep on doing and managing your great software, many greetings from Germany - MunichAtNight - Ewald

For me moment try to use some videos from the web ;

Google search as :  AstroSurface video

 

Lucien
 



#130 LucienP

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Posted 13 June 2021 - 08:25 AM

Hello Lucien,

 

I am just investigating your software, which looks by the way to be a great tool and I am very excited to do own first photos from Jupiter and Saturn with it.

Ewald,

 i have done a small repair including two basic videos as tutorial in the website :

 

( NB : field rotation in Deep-Sky will be valaible in the next version : AstroSurface REDSHIFT )

 

http://astrosurface.com/pageuk.html

 

Lucien


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#131 GSBass

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 06:58 AM

I think I may need a tool, or understand an existing one better to correct slightly elongated stars…. I have a Az mount and have been using sharpcap to do some 1 to 2 hours exposure…. Ie few seconds long stacked. The issue is stars have just a slight elongation from upper left to bottom right direction, i used the motion blur tool in Astrosurface and although it fixes it, afterwards the stars are not really round anymore, kinda blocky… so need a better solution, it’s just the nature of my mount I know but if I could use the motion tool and still get reasonable round stars then it would be a win



#132 dpastern

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 07:13 AM

I think I may need a tool, or understand an existing one better to correct slightly elongated stars…. I have a Az mount and have been using sharpcap to do some 1 to 2 hours exposure…. Ie few seconds long stacked. The issue is stars have just a slight elongation from upper left to bottom right direction, i used the motion blur tool in Astrosurface and although it fixes it, afterwards the stars are not really round anymore, kinda blocky… so need a better solution, it’s just the nature of my mount I know but if I could use the motion tool and still get reasonable round stars then it would be a win

an AZ mount is *never* gonna cut it for longer DSO exposures etc.  

 

AZ mounts will have rotation issues, amongst other things, due to their nature of movement.  There's nothing you can do about that.  

 

Are you taking single subs 1-2 hours?  If so, why?  There is ZERO benefit to such long exposures with CMOS Cameras.  NONE.  nada.  Might I suggest you watch Dr. Robin Glover's most excellent presentation on CMOS cameras etc:

https://www.youtube....h?v=3RH93UvP358

 

exposure time will depend upon the sensitivity of your CMOS camera, the bortle rating of the sky you are imaging in (and absence of light pollution) and which filter types you are using (NB filters will typically require longer exposures due to their nature of lower light sensitivity).  



#133 GSBass

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 08:09 AM

Hi, thanks…. No I’m doing short subs and just stacking a lot of them… stars for the most part have been ok but they do start to get a little oval the more I stack, sharpcap seems to do a pretty good job on software field rotation too…. But still whatever tracking errors I have do show up in the final so just looking at the various tools to see if I can round them out a little…. Nothing I’ve tried so far in Astrosurface has really worked for that…. For the most part it’s fine… you have to zoom in on individual stars to see the error. The motion blur reduction tool actually does work to bring a star back to pinpoint but the side effect is kinda squarish looking so not acceptable either

an AZ mount is *never* gonna cut it for longer DSO exposures etc.  

 

AZ mounts will have rotation issues, amongst other things, due to their nature of movement.  There's nothing you can do about that.  

 

Are you taking single subs 1-2 hours?  If so, why?  There is ZERO benefit to such long exposures with CMOS Cameras.  NONE.  nada.  Might I suggest you watch Dr. Robin Glover's most excellent presentation on CMOS cameras etc:

https://www.youtube....h?v=3RH93UvP358

 

exposure time will depend upon the sensitivity of your CMOS camera, the bortle rating of the sky you are imaging in (and absence of light pollution) and which filter types you are using (NB filters will typically require longer exposures due to their nature of lower light sensitivity).  



#134 dpastern

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 08:16 AM

Hi, thanks…. No I’m doing short subs and just stacking a lot of them… stars for the most part have been ok but they do start to get a little oval the more I stack, sharpcap seems to do a pretty good job on software field rotation too…. But still whatever tracking errors I have do show up in the final so just looking at the various tools to see if I can round them out a little…. Nothing I’ve tried so far in Astrosurface has really worked for that…. For the most part it’s fine… you have to zoom in on individual stars to see the error. The motion blur reduction tool actually does work to bring a star back to pinpoint but the side effect is kinda squarish looking so not acceptable either

Have you tried DeepSkyStacker for stacking?  Not many people use Sharpcap for DSO stacking...

 

But - you're always going to have rotational issues with an AZ mount.  The only real way to avoid this is to get an EQ mount and ensure that you both polar align it well, and have good tracking.  



#135 GSBass

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 09:10 AM

Although true that an eq mount is traditionally the best for astrophotography, the new way of thinking is you don’t need it, software field rotation combined with short exposures give very satisfying results with a Az mount… perhaps not as good because Az mount makers are not paying enough attention to track quality yet but it’s still the future of things. As far as sharpcap goes… live stacking is pretty awesome, observing and imaging at the same time is great, I use Astrosurface for all post processing but don’t feel the need to restack the output I am getting from sharpcap…. Although it is an option

Have you tried DeepSkyStacker for stacking?  Not many people use Sharpcap for DSO stacking...

 

But - you're always going to have rotational issues with an AZ mount.  The only real way to avoid this is to get an EQ mount and ensure that you both polar align it well, and have good tracking.  



#136 dpastern

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 09:24 AM

Although true that an eq mount is traditionally the best for astrophotography, the new way of thinking is you don’t need it, software field rotation combined with short exposures give very satisfying results with a Az mount… perhaps not as good because Az mount makers are not paying enough attention to track quality yet but it’s still the future of things. As far as sharpcap goes… live stacking is pretty awesome, observing and imaging at the same time is great, I use Astrosurface for all post processing but don’t feel the need to restack the output I am getting from sharpcap…. Although it is an option

I would disagree.  There's an old saying - get it right in camera.  The same thing applies to astrophotography imho.  Get rid of the polar alignment/tracking/field rotation issue in hardware.  Don't rely on software post image acquisition.  

 

AZ mounts, imho, are NOT the future of astrophotography.  EQ mounts will *always* outperform them for this task (DSO imaging).  For planetary, solar etc, it is not an issue to use an AZ mount.  

 

I have a Sharpcap pro licence, but I would never use it for stacking.  But then, I do have a legal copy of PixInsight (and MaximDL v5).  Call me a software snob lol!  I still think you would be better served by using DSS for stacking.  I haven't used astrosurface much, only a few times on planetary data, but that's all I intend to use it for.  But, as I said, I am spoiled by owning the best software on the market (PixInsight).  Daylight is 2nd and by a long margin imho.



#137 GSBass

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 12:34 PM

A new version of Astrosurface with more dso support is imminent , probably July… Redshift, Astrosurface is my favorite but I am mainly a planetary lunar imager… I’m just learning the basics of dso as I get in to robotic imaging, I’ll probably continue to do both but sharpcap will probably end up being for pure eaa 

I would disagree.  There's an old saying - get it right in camera.  The same thing applies to astrophotography imho.  Get rid of the polar alignment/tracking/field rotation issue in hardware.  Don't rely on software post image acquisition.  

 

AZ mounts, imho, are NOT the future of astrophotography.  EQ mounts will *always* outperform them for this task (DSO imaging).  For planetary, solar etc, it is not an issue to use an AZ mount.  

 

I have a Sharpcap pro licence, but I would never use it for stacking.  But then, I do have a legal copy of PixInsight (and MaximDL v5).  Call me a software snob lol!  I still think you would be better served by using DSS for stacking.  I haven't used astrosurface much, only a few times on planetary data, but that's all I intend to use it for.  But, as I said, I am spoiled by owning the best software on the market (PixInsight).  Daylight is 2nd and by a long margin imho.



#138 philinbris

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 03:34 PM

I think I may need a tool, or understand an existing one better to correct slightly elongated stars…. I have a Az mount and have been using sharpcap to do some 1 to 2 hours exposure…. Ie few seconds long stacked. The issue is stars have just a slight elongation from upper left to bottom right direction, i used the motion blur tool in Astrosurface and although it fixes it, afterwards the stars are not really round anymore, kinda blocky… so need a better solution, it’s just the nature of my mount I know but if I could use the motion tool and still get reasonable round stars then it would be a win

I had elongated stars and it all came down to poor polar alignment. Using Sharp Cap polar alignment, that solved all my issues.

Yes, I have an EQ mount and you have AZ, so that's probably also the problem to a degree. I understand a wedge does a great job of making AZ mounts play better, can you make a make shift one of those ( the commercial ones are horribly expensive)?

On EQ vs AZ, I bought the AZ-EQ6 to have the best of both worlds, and after 12+ months, I have never used the AZ mode.

Cheers


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#139 dpastern

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Posted 26 June 2021 - 10:08 PM

A new version of Astrosurface with more dso support is imminent , probably July… Redshift, Astrosurface is my favorite but I am mainly a planetary lunar imager… I’m just learning the basics of dso as I get in to robotic imaging, I’ll probably continue to do both but sharpcap will probably end up being for pure eaa 

the problem is the software per se, the problem is AZ mounts do not do well with DSO imaging.  As I said, polar alignment issues, rotational shift issues, will cause problems with subs matching well.  



#140 GSBass

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Posted 27 June 2021 - 10:23 AM

All I’m saying is the Az mount does well enough on dso for my aspirations, I was not trying to say it was better or equal to an eQ, just that I have been taking some nice photos but would be nice to have some tools that correct some of the Az errors that Az users encounter. As far as my statements regarding Az becoming more popular for imagers…. I just mean for casual astronomers… just seems inevitable that tech from evoscope and Vaonis and sharpcap starts making it in to more setups and it will be a winning choice for amateurs entering the hobby…. I think it’s already been proven by Stellina that it’s capable of imaging photos that are very acceptable to even experienced imagers.

the problem is the software per se, the problem is AZ mounts do not do well with DSO imaging.  As I said, polar alignment issues, rotational shift issues, will cause problems with subs matching well.  



#141 dpastern

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Posted 27 June 2021 - 10:34 AM

All I’m saying is the Az mount does well enough on dso for my aspirations, I was not trying to say it was better or equal to an eQ, just that I have been taking some nice photos but would be nice to have some tools that correct some of the Az errors that Az users encounter. As far as my statements regarding Az becoming more popular for imagers…. I just mean for casual astronomers… just seems inevitable that tech from evoscope and Vaonis and sharpcap starts making it in to more setups and it will be a winning choice for amateurs entering the hobby…. I think it’s already been proven by Stellina that it’s capable of imaging photos that are very acceptable to even experienced imagers.

I get what you're saying, but I can only see it as a limiting factor and will end up frustrating new users once they try and push the boundaries a bit imaging wise.  I mean, do you buy a car that only seats 2, if you have a family of 4, or do you buy a car that seats 4...

 

An EQ mount is not much more trouble to setup - really it just adds a bit more effort with regards to balancing in the RA and DEC axis, which in turn will help guiding, and will also remove any unwanted strain on the spur gears.  

 

You could just do a rough polar align and plate solve with either the AZ or EQ setup I guess.  

 

I am confident that the stars that you are seeing are a result of 2 things:

 

1.  improper balancing of the mount

 

and

 

2.  AZ and inaccurate polar alignment and tracking.  

 

You can continue to try fixing them in software, but you will never get pin point stars with this setup imho.  If you are happy with non perfect stars, then continue as you are.  It is your gear, your hobby and your money and your time!  I simply gave you an honest assessment of why you are seeing the issues that you are - i.e. answered your question.  Your issues aren't, imho, really anything to do with astrosurface - it's simply applying a band aid fix to underlying issues.  PixInsight can do similar things with its deconvolution tool, and I'm sure APP has a similar tool that can apply similar fixes.  I just don't personally think that a software fix after the event is a good way to fix the issue!



#142 GSBass

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Posted 27 June 2021 - 01:09 PM

This is what I’m getting if I keep it about an hour or less so it’s ok, I’m sure experienced types can find a lot wrong but doubt many who just do this casually would

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#143 dpastern

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Posted 27 June 2021 - 05:58 PM

This is what I’m getting if I keep it about an hour or less so it’s ok, I’m sure experienced types can find a lot wrong but doubt many who just do this casually would

it looks OK to my eyes, perhaps lacking any colour. 



#144 GSBass

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Posted 27 June 2021 - 06:12 PM

I don’t think m3 has as much color as the other globulars, this was 2 second exposures, 65 gain with the 485c and 102edl about 1 hour live stacked in sharpcap

it looks OK to my eyes, perhaps lacking any colour. 



#145 philinbris

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Posted 10 July 2021 - 06:30 PM

Hi Lucien.

Its been a while since you released a new version.

Just curious if there are any new goodies to look at anytime soon smile.gif

Cheers



#146 GSBass

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Posted 10 July 2021 - 07:02 PM

I actually think I narrowed down my issues to flexure, I need to insure everything is tightened down and have my flip mirror and camera connected flush…. Took a good bit of research but that’s what is great about cloudy nights, most likely someone has experienced the same thing you have…. Turns out flexure can be identified not just by elongation but zooming in and looking for color misalignment that only occurs on one side of a star instead of going all the way around like CA usually manifest it self….. actually quite a few people thought they were experiencing ca that were not. 

I had elongated stars and it all came down to poor polar alignment. Using Sharp Cap polar alignment, that solved all my issues.

Yes, I have an EQ mount and you have AZ, so that's probably also the problem to a degree. I understand a wedge does a great job of making AZ mounts play better, can you make a make shift one of those ( the commercial ones are horribly expensive)?

On EQ vs AZ, I bought the AZ-EQ6 to have the best of both worlds, and after 12+ months, I have never used the AZ mode.

Cheers


Edited by GSBass, 10 July 2021 - 07:03 PM.


#147 GSBass

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Posted 10 July 2021 - 07:05 PM

I checked yesterday and it still says July for redshift so guessing soon…. I think the main new feature is going to be dso stacking with field rotation

Hi Lucien.

Its been a while since you released a new version.

Just curious if there are any new goodies to look at anytime soon smile.gif

Cheers



#148 philinbris

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Posted 10 July 2021 - 10:11 PM

I checked yesterday and it still says July for redshift so guessing soon…. I think the main new feature is going to be dso stacking with field rotation

Thanks - I did notice that after I posted.

I will be keen to try the DSO functionality.


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#149 GSBass

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Posted 13 July 2021 - 10:24 PM

Located the source of flexure I was noting on some of my refractor images…. It’s just because I was not familiar with the scope yet, the 1.25 adapter is actually held in place by a compression ring… it threw me off because it also has a lock screw on it so I was just tightening that screw instead of twisting the ring, that was allowing some movement of the flip mirror I guess just from tracking…. Doesn’t take much I guess…. Anyway solved I think



#150 GSBass

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Posted 16 July 2021 - 02:44 PM

Just a heads up, redshift has been released


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