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

Trying to make juice out of the lemons life gave me

beginner astrophotography CMOS DIY imaging planet planetarium software
  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 PollAirUs

PollAirUs

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 30 Apr 2020
  • Loc: Minas Gerais, Brasil

Posted 02 August 2020 - 05:27 PM

  Hi folks!
  I've been researching astrophotography for seven months now and have not yet bought my equipment for it. Since most of the necessary equipment is well beyond my budget, I decided to use the equipment I already have: My 4.5" newtonian in an Alt/Az mount with a webcam that I adapted for astrophotography just by removing it lens and placing the eyepiece ring on the webcam so I can attach it to the telescope.

 

 Of course I'm tracking the planets manually. It's very difficult but it's something that gets easier with practice. Besides, it's the only way.

 However, when I finally managed to have saturn on my screen, I realized that no matter what I did, I managed to achieve a good focus but Saturn was still that pale spot, I tried to change all the settings, but nothing worked.

I'm thinking of buying some glow filter, some simple filter that retains some of the brightness of the objects being photographed? Or a UV / IR filter? Any suggestions on what I can do to reduce all that brightness?

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • Please Help Me.png


#2 zxx

zxx

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,619
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2010

Posted 02 August 2020 - 05:47 PM

Did you try reducing exposure ? 



#3 The_8_Bit_Zombie

The_8_Bit_Zombie

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 273
  • Joined: 29 Apr 2016
  • Loc: Southern California

Posted 02 August 2020 - 05:49 PM

That looks way overexposed. I'm not sure what camera you're using but lowering the shutter speed or the gain should work. However looking at the right side of your screenshot I don't see any of those settings. Perhaps changing the FPS drop down menu would change the exposure?


  • zxx and gene williams like this

#4 PollAirUs

PollAirUs

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 30 Apr 2020
  • Loc: Minas Gerais, Brasil

Posted 02 August 2020 - 07:25 PM

Did you try reducing exposure ? 

You mean exposure time?

 

That looks way overexposed. I'm not sure what camera you're using but lowering the shutter speed or the gain should work. However looking at the right side of your screenshot I don't see any of those settings. Perhaps changing the FPS drop down menu would change the exposure?

I can try that, but yeah, I would've tried to decrease the gain if I had that option, but I don't. And I wonder why! Maybe because of the camera I'm using? A simple webcam.



#5 zxx

zxx

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,619
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2010

Posted 02 August 2020 - 07:46 PM

You mean exposure time?

 

 

InkedCapture planet_LI 88.jpg


  • PollAirUs likes this

#6 The_8_Bit_Zombie

The_8_Bit_Zombie

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 273
  • Joined: 29 Apr 2016
  • Loc: Southern California

Posted 03 August 2020 - 03:06 AM

I can try that, but yeah, I would've tried to decrease the gain if I had that option, but I don't. And I wonder why! Maybe because of the camera I'm using? A simple webcam.

Do you know the specific model of the webcam? That would help figure out if adjusting the exposure/gain manually is possible.



#7 PollAirUs

PollAirUs

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 30 Apr 2020
  • Loc: Minas Gerais, Brasil

Posted 03 August 2020 - 07:15 AM

Do you know the specific model of the webcam? That would help figure out if adjusting the exposure/gain manually is possible.

It probably isn't. It's a very cheap, poor model that I have had for a long time but never used.

Would buying a filter work? Or just buying a planetary camera to have the settings?



#8 zxx

zxx

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,619
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2010

Posted 03 August 2020 - 08:31 AM

It probably isn't. It's a very cheap, poor model that I have had for a long time but never used.

Would buying a filter work? Or just buying a planetary camera to have the settings?

Did you click the camera control tab that opens exposure setting ?



#9 bobharmony

bobharmony

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 348
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2017
  • Loc: Connecticut, USA

Posted 03 August 2020 - 08:46 AM

Can you increase the number of frames per second above the 30fps that is showing?  That could have the effect of reducing the exposure time.  As others have said, that image looks very overexposed.

 

Bob



#10 PollAirUs

PollAirUs

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 30 Apr 2020
  • Loc: Minas Gerais, Brasil

Posted 03 August 2020 - 10:16 AM

Did you click the camera control tab that opens exposure setting ?

Yes, it's like in the picture, the only control that shows is the Frame Rate Limit.

 

Can you increase the number of frames per second above the 30fps that is showing?  That could have the effect of reducing the exposure time.  As others have said, that image looks very overexposed.

 

Bob

No, the only option is 30 FPS. I can only increase the Frame Rate Limit Option.
 


  • zxx likes this

#11 ToxMan

ToxMan

    Skylab

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,212
  • Joined: 23 Jan 2011
  • Loc: Tucson, Arizona, USA

Posted 03 August 2020 - 10:18 AM

Post #5 by "zxx" is a good example of your live view when all the elements are properly put together...

 

Your screenshot of Saturn lacks any detail, and your histogram is not open, the camera control box is not open, and looks like you are manipulating "image controls" instead of "camera controls," which would explain why nothing happens on "live view"...you are over-exposed and the histogram is probably far to the right!

 

Next time, open histogram box, and use it to aid in your camera settings. The Cassini Division should be visible when you are close. Also, try capturing AVI files, rather than SER files...might be easier to process if you are just starting the learning curve climb. Can't tell you if you are using the right codex (YUY2).

 

Saturn is a very dim subject for a cheap webcam. Don't worry about frame rate...get the right shutter speed and gain settings.

 

When I get a new camera, I don't wait for a good night to figure out how to control camera. I set up during day, focus on distant terrestrial object, and play around with camera settings to understand how it all works. Much easier than fiddling around in the dark with a nice new camera unknown to me.


Edited by ToxMan, 03 August 2020 - 10:42 AM.

  • Lacaille, t-ara-fan and PollAirUs like this

#12 The_8_Bit_Zombie

The_8_Bit_Zombie

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 273
  • Joined: 29 Apr 2016
  • Loc: Southern California

Posted 03 August 2020 - 10:19 PM

I think the problem is that there isn't anything he can do under the "Camera Controls" tab. (Unless the tab is closed, but it doesn't look like it)

 

It probably isn't. It's a very cheap, poor model that I have had for a long time but never used.

Would buying a filter work? Or just buying a planetary camera to have the settings?

If your camera doesn't have manual exposure & gain adjustment there's not much you can do really. It'd be worth making sure that it doesn't though - I'd find the exact model and look up its user manual online just to make sure.

 

If your current camera won't work you don't necessarily need to jump to a planetary cam. If you don't have the money for a planetary cam you could get a cheap webcam or security cam that does allow you to adjust the exposure. Then later down the line you could get a planetary cam.



#13 PollAirUs

PollAirUs

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 30 Apr 2020
  • Loc: Minas Gerais, Brasil

Posted 04 August 2020 - 04:53 PM

Post #5 by "zxx" is a good example of your live view when all the elements are properly put together...

 

Your screenshot of Saturn lacks any detail, and your histogram is not open, the camera control box is not open, and looks like you are manipulating "image controls" instead of "camera controls," which would explain why nothing happens on "live view"...you are over-exposed and the histogram is probably far to the right!

 

Next time, open histogram box, and use it to aid in your camera settings. The Cassini Division should be visible when you are close. Also, try capturing AVI files, rather than SER files...might be easier to process if you are just starting the learning curve climb. Can't tell you if you are using the right codex (YUY2).

 

Saturn is a very dim subject for a cheap webcam. Don't worry about frame rate...get the right shutter speed and gain settings.

 

When I get a new camera, I don't wait for a good night to figure out how to control camera. I set up during day, focus on distant terrestrial object, and play around with camera settings to understand how it all works. Much easier than fiddling around in the dark with a nice new camera unknown to me.

It seems that my camera controls are totally limited, there isn't much I can do with this camera I guess.

Here is a print I just took!

Screenshot_1.png

The histogram is completely dead, but when I change the settings it changes too. It may be due to a lack of knowledge or a lack of experience, but I don't know how an histogram should look like and how it helps me in capturing.


I'm thinking about trying to record during the day, when the planets are less bright. It will be difficult to locate them with the telescope, and even more difficult with the camera, but it is worth the try! I'll probably try it tomorrow.

 

I think the problem is that there isn't anything he can do under the "Camera Controls" tab. (Unless the tab is closed, but it doesn't look like it)

 

If your camera doesn't have manual exposure & gain adjustment there's not much you can do really. It'd be worth making sure that it doesn't though - I'd find the exact model and look up its user manual online just to make sure.

 

If your current camera won't work you don't necessarily need to jump to a planetary cam. If you don't have the money for a planetary cam you could get a cheap webcam or security cam that does allow you to adjust the exposure. Then later down the line you could get a planetary cam.

By now I'm trying to gain experience, to see if it's worth buying a planetary camera in the future, or if it won't bring me good results due to the difficulty of doing manual tracking.
 



#14 skywolf856

skywolf856

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 570
  • Joined: 25 Jan 2008
  • Loc: SE Michigan

Posted 04 August 2020 - 06:09 PM

If you are using a webcam with the original lens removed, you will need to use an IR/CUT filter in the nosepiece.


  • PollAirUs likes this


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





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: beginner, astrophotography, CMOS, DIY, imaging, planet, planetarium software



Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics