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Goofi's Imaging Challenge, January 2023 - NGC 2403

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#1 nikm


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Posted 03 January 2023 - 11:44 AM

The January 2023 Challenge is now open. The target is the NGC 2403. To reduce the number of stickies, please submit your entry to this thread.


The Rules will remain pretty simple:


-Your Equipment
-Your Data, Captured This Season
-Your Processing
-One Entry Per Member
-Only post your FINAL image. Please display an image in your post, not just a link!!


NO general discussion in this thread. Your post should only contain your image and appropriate info. There is a separate thread for discussion.


To increase participation over such a diverse group, the winner will be selected by random drawing.


Entries must be submitted by midnight, eastern time, on January 31, and I will try to announce the winner sometime after February 1. 


If the selected winner does not reply and pick a target with-in 3 days of the winner being announced, the Mods will then select the next target.


There is now a companion thread that runs parallel with the imaging challenge each month. This thread will be for general discussion on the corresponding months imaging challenge target. This thread will be very informal and relaxed and will be treated just like any other thread in the forums. Here is where you can post questions on processing, get help finding the targets location, post a preliminary "final" image to get feedback, etc. The only thing special is that I will be pinning it every month and each months companion thread will be titled in the same way for easy finding and searching. Since this is informal the mods will NOT be starting this thread. We will leave it up to the general membership. So it could take a couple days for someone to start it and for a mod to pin it. So please be patient if you don't see it up day one. Who ever starts this thread please PM me with a link to the thread so I can pin it.


Whoever starts the companion thread should title it to match the following: Target Name - Techniques and Progress Discussion  For example: Rosette Challenge - Techniques and Progress Discussion


Once the companion thread is post, please DM me with a link and I will get it pinned.


Note: If I am late announcing, gently nudge one of the moderators in a private note, it helps.


I hope everyone has fun with this one, and with that,


Let The Games Begin


#2 TomC_RR


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Posted 11 January 2023 - 02:58 PM

NGC 2403 taken Jan 9 2023.


Canon T7 

on AT130EDT with .8 reducer/flattener with Teleview X2 powermate. - first time try with this combo.

on SW EQ6-R-Pro

with AA+


Processing started as a fail - but I continued without being able to calibrate with bias / darks / flats. I will be starting a new topic to ask question on what happened.


30 x 240 secs @ 3200 ISO

30 X 300 sec @ 3200 ISO


Stacked in PI ImageIntegration because WBPP failed - but did leave me with debayered & registered images


Channel extraction

Linear Fit

Channel combination



EZ Denoise

Curve Transformation

Histogram Transformation

Curve Transformation


Southern Oregon weather looks like this may be my only shot this month.


Ngc 2403


#3 unimatrix0


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Posted 12 January 2023 - 09:18 AM

Ok, so I'll post it, since I'm away next week and I won't get the chance to image much more, plus the weather is all over the place anyway. 


EQ6R pro mount

RC 6 telescope + CCDT67 reducer set at 972mm reduction

ASI533mm pro + 1.25" ZWO LRGBHa filters

N.I.N.A imaging

Acquisition dates:  12/20/2022 thru- 1/07/2023





Screenshot 2023-01-12 090921.jpg







#4 Kring


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Posted 15 January 2023 - 03:44 PM

Sharing my NGC2403 for my first challenge submission. Taken two weeks ago and just got around to processing.


Imaged with Celestron EdgeHD 11”, 0.7x reducer, ASI2600MC, ASIAIR, CGX Mount.

37 x 300sec exposures over two nights, sensor temp at -20C.  Captured flats, dark-flats, used my existing bias & darks to calibrate.

PixInsight Blink - I don’t recall exactly how many I blinked out, was probably around 5.

PixInsight processing WBPP, BXT, NXT, SPCC, histogram stretch, tweak histogram, boost saturation to final data, save at TIF.

Load into Photoshop just to crop then convert the TIF to a high quality JPG at a little smaller size.

Final image processing done in Apple Photo app on iPad - use the auto adjust then pull back brightness, vibrance, saturation and lower black point to give final look.


Attached Thumbnails

  • NGC2403_Processed 1.jpg

Edited by Kring, 16 January 2023 - 11:52 AM.


#5 Old Photons

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Posted 15 January 2023 - 05:32 PM

Below is my NGC2403 for the January 2023 challenge.  Details are:


-Askar 107PHQ, unreduced

-HEQ5 Mount

-ZWO ASI2600MC; 77x300" 0 Gain

-Captured 22-11-06
-Reprocessed in Pixinsight 23-01-14 to apply SPCC and Blur Xterminator



Attached Thumbnails

  • NGC2403.jpg


#6 southernharry


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Posted 16 January 2023 - 11:25 AM

Beginners' entry-


AT 102ED @ 714mm, ASI 183MC, UV/IR Filter, CEM26 Mount

3 Hours - 60 sec x 180 on 1/15/2023.  B6/7 skies - or worse in my yard.

APP, AP, PS Elements for processing

Attached Thumbnails

  • NGC_2403-lpc-cbg-csc-St-AP-PS-NX-AP-Crop-Reduced.jpg


#7 Apennine


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Posted 16 January 2023 - 12:48 PM

Hi Everyone,


Here is my entry:


- Full details on Astrobin, if you click the image

- ED80T CF, CEM-40/ZWO AM5, ASI294MM run by N.I.N.A.

- Imaged over the last week (12h 56' HaLRGB)

- Processing (Pixinsight)


  • Crop
  • DBE
  • RGB Combine
    • SPCC
    • Add Ha via Pixel Math
    • Histogram and curve transform to RGB
    • Convolute RGB
  • Lum
    • BXT
    • NXT
    • Histogram Transform and Curve Transform
  • LRGB Combine
    • Range Mask
    • Histogram Equalization
    • MLT

Comments welcome, thanks!





Edited by Apennine, 16 January 2023 - 12:56 PM.


#8 ZepHead


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Posted 16 January 2023 - 10:28 PM

Here is my entry for NGC 2403 taken on 1/15/23

Celestron Evolution 8" SCT with HyperStar on SkyWatcher EQ6-R Pro

ASI533MC, Optolong L-Pro

NINA used to take 50x120s exposures, dark, flats and dark flats

Processed in PixInsight (WBPP, SPCC, BXT, NXT)

Photoshop to crop and save as JPG


NGC 2403_3.jpg


#9 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 17 January 2023 - 06:24 AM

Taken last night, when it was cold (-9ºC) still and moonless, so I figured I'd remove the reducer and shoot at my SD81's native 625mm f/7.7. It seemed to balance getting detail with a nice wide shot to give it context. I rather like it. 


This is 37x180" using an ASI2600MC Pro, stacked in Deep Sky Stacker, DBE and Photometric Colour Calibration in Pixinsight and some Denoise in Photoshop. 


1600 stacked_38x180_DBE copy.jpg




#10 larryjh


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Posted 17 January 2023 - 11:27 AM

Here is my entry for the month:


Data captured on 1/15/2023
Equipment: CEM26, Omni XLT 150, Explore Scientific HR coma corrector, ASI294MC pro, WO Uniguide 32, ASI224MC guide camera
264x120", gain 120, offset 10, temp -10C, UV/IR
Captured in NINA, processed in Siril, Gimp, FastStone


Seeing was poor/bad and lots of wind.


click for larger


NGC 2403



#11 Beaverpond Astro

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Posted 19 January 2023 - 10:08 PM

I think I've messed with this image enough...time to just post it!


Taken with a RASA 11:  OSC+Luminance+Ha

The OSC data was taken with a 2600MC;  the Luminance was with a 2600MM and Astronomik L2 filter;  the Ha was taken with a 2600MM and Astronomik Ha filter.

Cameras were set at -10C and gain100 for both.
Data was collected over multiple nights in January, 2023.


Ha Data:  120 secs x 91

Lum data: 60 secs x 60 

OSC data: 60 secs x 429


Should have reversed the number of subs taken for OSC vs. Luminance tongue2.gif.  


All pre & post in PI.  Processes included: BXT, NXT, SXT, HT, various masks, curves, a little bit of saturation.

Simple Ha combination with LRGB, per a process outlined by VisibleDark (Shawn).  Ha data used as a mask on LRGB image; Ha then added via PM to the LRGB. I went light on the Ha addition...didn't want it to overwhelm the image. 

I need to study and practice with more elaborate Ha add processes. grin.gif


Astrobin version: https://www.astrobin.com/zvnxtw/C/







Edited by Beaverpond Astro, 19 January 2023 - 10:16 PM.


#12 hollo


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Posted 20 January 2023 - 02:55 PM





RC8 scope

ASI2600 with ZWO RGB filters + OAG

5 1/2 hours of 60s exposures.

Bortle 7



Pixinsight (with NoiseXTerminator and StarXTerminator)

I didn't really do anything special - every time I tried to it ended up looking overprocessed. I had versions with Deconvolution, multiscale processing processes, etc., and in the end all I did was calibration, stretch, star separation, noise reduction, and a little bit of sharpening.



I'd intended to use a reducer and shoot at about 1000 f/l, but was getting really bad vignetting so shot a the native focal length instead. I also managed to rotate the camera by 90 degrees between the two nights of acquisition and so had to crop in a bit further to get to good data.


#13 Robert7980



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Posted 21 January 2023 - 12:37 AM

NGC-2403 captured 1/19/23


I had a hard time with this one, went through many iterations in post processing, in the end I just left if basic.


6.75 hours total integration. 



ASI-2600MM pro.

Antlia pro 2" LRGB, Antlia Pro 2" 3nm Ha.

SVBoney SV550 80mm APO at 483mm. 

Skywatcher EQ6-R.



Captured in N.I.N.A and processed in PixInsight, BX, stretching and curves, LRGB Combine and Pixel math to combine the Ha data. 









Edited by Robert7980, 21 January 2023 - 12:38 AM.


#14 const


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Posted 23 January 2023 - 02:17 AM

Collected over several nights, Jan 6–22. Bortle 9 sky, mostly without Moon.

Celestron Edge HD 8" on AVX, OAG.

ZWO EAF 5V, EFW 7×36mm, ASI2600MM Pro & ASI432MM (guiding).

Astronomik Deep Sky RGB and MaxFR Ha 6nm filters.

Captured with KStars/Ekos. Processed in PixInsight.


R 186×60s

G 211×60s

B 164×60s

H 114×120s




#15 rkelley61


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Posted 23 January 2023 - 09:46 PM

The weather hasn't cooperated this month, only one night with poor seeing when I captured the Ha images.  The RGB images are from October.  


GSO 10" Newt / ASI1600MM Pro / RGB

ES127 / ASI2600MM Pro / Ha



Astronomik Blue 1.25" 90×120″ (3h) (gain: 139.00) 0°C bin 1×1
Astronomik Green 1.25" 93×120″ (3h 6′) (gain: 139.00) 0°C bin 1×1
Astronomik Red 1.25" 115×120″ (3h 50′) (gain: 139.00) 0°C bin 1×1
ZWO Ha 7nm 36mm 132×120″ (4h 24′) (gain: 100.00) -10°C bin 1×1


Capture in SGP, processed in PixInsight


First time combining images from different scopes/cameras which turned out to be easy (in this case) and combining Ha/RGB which wasn't so easy.  The discussion in the technical discussion thread was very helpful.




#16 CorralesRay


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Posted 24 January 2023 - 07:46 PM

Here is my post, image details as follows:


R: 65 subs, 120s

G: 68 subs, 120s and some 180s due to operator error

B: 51 subs, 120s

L: 459 subs, 60s

Ha: 50 subs, 240s and some 480s subs due to operator error


Mount: EQ-6R pro

Imaging Camera: ZWO ASI 2600mm

Scope: PrimaLuce Labs 104m,. F6.5 triplet refractor, with X1 flattener

Imaging Control: NINA


Post Processing: PixInsight with add ons


Processing: (I hope this isn't too much)

WBPP with flats, darks and dark flats

Dynamic Crop


Channel Combine (RGB)

Plate Solve (RGB)



Decon (not BlurX) for RGB, Lum, Ha

NXT noiseX

HT stretch (RGB, Lum, Ha)

Ha_Lum combine

Ha_Lum StarX  (did not save stars)


RGB + Ha_Lum combine

RGB_Ha_Lum StarX (saved unscreened stars)


HDMRT on copy of RGB_Ha_Lum

blend with original RGB_Ha_Lum


LHE (kernel radius 20)

LHE (kernel radius 50)

Sharpen with MMT


Add stars back with unscreen stars (used Lukomatico's scripts)


I am pleased with this image (perhaps ignorance is bliss), but I'm happy with the star colors and star balance with galaxy. I'm also pleased that several of the distance galaxies are visible. With more data this image would really improve. (But I was lucky to get 3 clear nights with a small moon and the clouds have moved in.)


Here is a link to a slightly larger image is one is interested: https://astrob.in/5ap1t6/0/









Attached Thumbnails

  • ngc2403_final_CN.jpg


#17 Dedodso


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Posted 25 January 2023 - 09:03 PM

    Got this image on 1-20-2023 ,took lot of 10sec subs but a lot of them were in cloud cover and ended up with 1227 usable subs. Seemed slightly  foggy early on then everyPS3 PIX 2 SEQ_NG_2403_1_20_2023_1203_pics_800iso_DBE.jpg thing iced over.

      3 hrs 20 minutes exposure time

      Scope: Skywatcher 200mm by 1200mm flextube reflector on Alt-Az goto mount using synscan pro app on Ipad

      Camera: Canon 2000D Modded full spectrum using Backyard EOS

      Processing: Sequator and Photoshop 6.


#18 LeoNim


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Posted 27 January 2023 - 07:50 PM

Here's mine. I've been using this to troubleshoot a reflection within the 115, which explains why there's so many L lights.


ASI2600MM Pro


EQ6-R Pro

  • Antlia Blue: 13×180″( 39′) (gain: 100.00) -10°C bin 1×1

  • Antlia Green: 17×180″( 51′) (gain: 100.00) -10°C bin 1×1

  • Antlia Luminance: 367×180″(18h 21′) (gain: 100.00) -10°C bin 1×1

  • Antlia Red: 20×180″(1h) (gain: 100.00) -10°C bin 1×1

Processed in Pixinsight

  • DBE

  • Channel Combination

  • SPCC

  • BXT

  • Pixelmath Stretch

  • LRGB Combination

  • SXT

  • Curves to adjust saturation

  • Pixelmath combine stars back in

  • NXT



Edited by LeoNim, 27 January 2023 - 07:51 PM.


#19 Buzz135



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Posted 28 January 2023 - 08:59 PM

I held out for a 2nd night of data as long as I could.  Haven't had a good, clear night up here in Minnesota since early December when I took this photo.




- iOptron CEM40

- ZWO ASI2600MC Pro with an Optolong L-Pro filter

- Guiding: WO Uniguide with a ZWO ASI290MM mini

- Software:  NINA and PHD2



- 120x 60sec subs

- 12/3/2022

- Bortle 7 MN backyard; Moon 80%

- Processed with Pixinsight





Attached Thumbnails

  • NGC-2403_v3.1_DBE_PS copy.jpg


#20 Chrisofweden


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Posted 29 January 2023 - 02:03 PM

NGC2403 January 2023

My entry for January captured on the one clear sky opportunity I had this month!

25/1 under Bortle 4 sky, Outside temperature: -5 Deg C, Seeing: Good (1.9)
Scope: Askar FRA600 quintuplet refractor (600mm, F5.6)
Imaging camera: ASI 2600MM Pro @-10c, Gain 100
Guiding and Dither: ZWO F4 scope + ASI 120 MC Pro
Focus: ASI EAF
Filters: ASI EFW HaRGB
Mount: EQ6R Pro
Control: ASIair Plus
Integration: 8hrs comprising 120 x 60s each with R,G & B plus 40 x 180s Ha.
Calibration: Bias, Darks, Flats
Software/Processing in PixInsight:
WBPP, separating each filter
Photometric CC
Channel Combination (RGB)
RC NoiseXterminator
RC StarXterminator
Local Histogram
Curves, Color Saturation
HaRGB Combination using Bill Blanshan advanced HaRGB tool in galaxy mode
Curves, Color Saturation


Edited by Chrisofweden, 29 January 2023 - 03:26 PM.


#21 TelescopeGreg


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Posted 29 January 2023 - 05:04 PM

Ok!  So an unexpected lesson learned here...  As I've told others, if nothing else this is a hobby of a bazillion little details.  When something's not working, STOP and look at what the system is telling you.  You may learn something.  Yep!


I was having huge problems focusing, and was blaming it on the rather heavy dew we were having.  But the autofocuser was showing me an unusually shaped focus curve, which I should have investigated before wasting several nights of potential imaging time.  Long story short, the focuser had hit what it thought was the end of travel, when in fact it was still in the middle.  Simple fix to reset the counter, and all was well after that.


So, this is 1.5hrs worth, still a bit of dew but an otherwise normal session.  Cute little galaxy.  Data was stacked with ASTAP and processed in StarTools.  I pushed the details a bit, using a combination of HDR and Entropy Sharpening, trying to show the structure of the galaxy without overdoing it too much.


Imaged at home on 1/24/2023 (Bortle-6+).  Transparency was good, Seeing not so.  Guiding was better than average, due primarily to the high declination angle.  Ambient temp at minus a couple of degrees C.


Telescope:  Stellarvue SVA130EDT, 130mm f/7

Camera:  ASI2600MC-Pro.  Gain 100, Temp -5C, offset 50.  No filters.

Mount:  Celestron AVX

Guider:  ZWO 60mm f/4.6 scope, ASI174mm Mini camera.  CCDciel internal guider software

Exposures:  18 x 300 seconds Lights, 20 each Darks, Flats, Dark-Flats

Acquisition software:  CCDciel on Raspberry Pi 4B with Astroberry distro

Stacked in ASTAP, processed in StarTools 1.7


NGC2403 3rd night 18x300s ASTAP ST old process 96.5pct SS HDR (resized).jpg


#22 Alrakis


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Posted 30 January 2023 - 10:55 AM

Here is my attempt for the month. Feeling better about the setup, but still have more to learn. I did capture more data on an alternate day with a filter, but couldn't get the two sets of data to play well with each other. Will work on that some more for learning.


Imaged at a somewhat darker site than my home on 20Jan2023 (Bortle of ~4).  The sky was very clear with excellent transparency, but the seeing was horrible and the twilight seemed to go on forever (or Raleigh was having a big party). Also, by the end of the evening the cold was a bit much (mid to low 30sF). I actually was able to get a really good image of M31 and M42 with this setup on the same night so it actually turned out well for focusing and all. I was able to have both an imaging setup and visual setup going at the same time so I could see Comet 2022 E3 ZTF (and other objects) before closing down for the night. Also, I am sure I could get more out of the data in post with more experience and time.


Telescope: Vixen R200SS 200mm F/4 (reduced to f/3 (600mm FL) with a Starizona Nexus Coma Corrector/Reducer)

Mount:  Celestron AVX

Camera:  unmodded Nikon D7200 at ISO200

Guider:  Lacerta MGEN 3 (the MGEN provided the signaling for light exposures and dithered as well.)

Lights:  50 x 90 seconds (with 1 second mirror lockup)

Other: 32 Dark Bias, Darks, Flats

Pre-processed, stacked, and post in Siril


Please PM me if you have any advice on how to do this better.






#23 ntph



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Posted 30 January 2023 - 09:02 PM

AP130 mm with flattener, iOptron CEM70, QHY268M, filters as below

Bortle 6 cackyard

Lum 90 min

RGB 25 min each

Ha 50 min

darks, flats, bias

NINA for capture, PI for processing

WBPP, ABE or DBE, SPCC for RGB, BXT, NXT, GHS, Curves for contrast and saturation to taste

Blanshan's Ha to RGB P{ixelMath in Galaxy mode, parameters adjusted to taste.




#24 David Boulanger

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Posted 31 January 2023 - 05:37 PM

NGC 2403

14 hrs. of 2 minute subs

RC 6 @ F9 with a Orion G26 OSC at 1 degree Celsius

Bortle 7/8 

APP and Affinity for post work.


Cloudy final.jpg

Edited by David Boulanger, 31 January 2023 - 05:40 PM.


#25 hornjs



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Posted 01 February 2023 - 12:58 AM

I was hoping to make a couple more adjustments to this before midnight (less blue), but stuck at work away from the processing rig so I'll just submit it anyway.  


Edge8HD, 0.7reducer
294mm pro, -20c
Zwo asi air plus. Zwo eaf, efw
Antlia LRGB filters
L 5hrs of 120sec, RGB 180secx3x30 all gain 121 bin2

Ha 4hrs of 180sec, 200 gain, bin 2

Total Integration 13.5hr

Processed in Pixinsight.  Used Bill Blanshan Ha blend scripts - thanks Bill!






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