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Eclipse photographers - what are you planning on using?

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#51 APshooter

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Posted 26 July 2023 - 02:09 PM

In response to the Hinode solar guider: I used it on the August 21 solar eclipse. During totality the mount guided without inputs from the Hinode. My guess it didn't send corrections to the mount as my sun image drifted slightly from center due to an inaccurate polar alignment.

Testing the Solar Quest should be easy: set it to track the sun, then cover the solar scope it uses to guide with. A small kitchen towel would do it. Then uncover the guide scope after four minutes and see what you've got.

Edited by APshooter, 26 July 2023 - 02:10 PM.

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#52 Francois314

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Posted 19 August 2023 - 11:48 PM

focal length makes or brakes solar eclipse images, if you want streamers, do not go to high on the focal length (700mm max on a full frame)

 

Picture5.png

 

post-468546-0-24470600-1692411993.jpg

 

processing solar eclipse images is also not easy, photoshop can't align picture because sun move so you cant use starts, and you need an adaptative filter to show the corona in details like in the picture above), i started a threat on solar eclipse image processing here: https://www.cloudyni...ing-achf-fnrgf/


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#53 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 20 August 2023 - 07:43 AM

Francois, I agree, and nice graphic, thank you for sharing it.  I would also add aligning your sensor with solar north and the solar equator.

Attached Thumbnails

  • angle sensor.jpg

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#54 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 30 August 2023 - 06:25 AM

For solar eclipse "newbies": If 2024 is going to be your first total solar eclipse and you plan to take pictures, Nico Carver, who owns the YouTube channel Nebula Photos has started a series of videos about preparing for the 2024 eclipse. He just uploaded Part 2 about basic gear setups.  This is actually quite a good overview video for people just starting out with eclipse photography.  Although I HIGHLY recommend buying a glass solar filter, he is trying to help people save money by demonstrating the fabrication of a Baader Film solar filter and I am okay with that.  He plans to continue the video series with more in-depth tutorials. If you are new to this, I think you should subscribe to his channel and follow this series.  https://youtu.be/t89dN92u39s


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#55 markmanner

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Posted 30 August 2023 - 06:56 AM

  Although I HIGHLY recommend buying a glass solar filter, he is trying to help people save money by demonstrating the fabrication of a Baader Film solar filter and I am okay with that.  

Hi, Gordon, I've used glass and Baader film and Herschel wedge filters for white light viewing and imaging over the years. I prefer (where usable) the wedge views, but I'm not sure I would have a preference between glass vs. film for in front of aperture filters. Why do you like the glass ones better? 



#56 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 30 August 2023 - 03:48 PM

That is a great question markmanner!  It has a long answer.  It has to do with the way I teach first-time eclipse photographers to figure out the proper exposures for the eclipse for their particular camera setup.  In 2017 when there were a lot of people with no eclipse photography experience (unlike for 2024), I would give talks and people were freaking out over choosing camera settings for exposure.  And rightly so, because the eclipse exposure tables are hard to figure out.  But I realized something from my prior eclipses about a powerful relationship with glass solar filters and this is what I teach.  If you are using a glass solar filter, you can go outside today and take a balanced exposure of the full solar disk.  What I mean about balanced exposure is a disk that has a relatively bright center but preserves the natural limb darkening of the Sun on the edges.  So, at this point, your f/stop is fixed and you have chosen an ISO, and you adjust your shutter speed for a balanced full disk exposure.  I can tell you that those same settings, when the solar filter is off your gear, will be the settings that expose for inner corona.  That is very powerful information about the way your system will handle light for the eclipse!  But, you don't go from imaging the partial phases to imaging the corona, there is stuff in between. Here is what you do with that information:

1.  Take all of your partial phase images at the setting for full disk except for the last one or two images before C2 (within 3 minutes).  These small crescents emit less light, so slow your shutter speed by 1/3 stop for these.

2.  After your last crescent image change your shutter speed to 2 full stops faster than your full disk image shutter speed and use this setting for the entire bright sequence of the diamond ring, into Baily's beads, into the chromosphere.

3.  Now you are at C2 at that fast shutter speed so just bracket corona images 1/3 or 1/2 stop slower and slower until you take a 3 or 4-second exposure.

4.  Then reverse the process after C3.

 

Now, this only works well with glass due to the percent transmission characteristics of glass.  This technique works great.  Glass gets you in a good range of working shutter speeds to be faster for beads and get much slower for the outer corona. This range gets thrown off with film products.  I've tested glass, SolarLite, and Baader on the same rig at the same time of day. Thousand Oaks Optical passes about 3 stops less light than glass.  Astro solar Baader film passes about 2 1/3 stops more light than glass. For the two film products, conversions can be done to estimate corona and beads shutter speeds, but they can get you into some weird shutter speeds depending on the f/stop of your system.  Glass just works so well!

 

So, you may already know what you want to do, and others who imaged 2017 may have their plan.  This may not be for you.  This guideline I teach, works for first-timers to get them to be greatly successful at their first eclipse.  Thanks for your thoughtful question. Gordon

Attached Thumbnails

  • full disk exposure.jpg
  • last partial phases.jpg
  • ring exposure.jpg
  • same gear solarlite 3 stops less light.jpg
  • same gear baader 2 1_3 stops more light.jpg

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#57 markmanner

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Posted 30 August 2023 - 07:41 PM

That is a great question markmanner!  It has a long answer.  It has to do with the way I teach first-time eclipse photographers to figure out the proper exposures for the eclipse for their particular camera setup.  In 2017 when there were a lot of people with no eclipse photography experience (unlike for 2024),

I've taken images of several eclipses going back to 1979, using 1000 Oaks and Baader filter material, film and later digital. It is always a bit of a challenge to try to find the correct exposure settings. I haven't done it quite as scientifically as you, though :).

Thanks for the detailed reply. Good luck next spring!

Mark



#58 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 30 August 2023 - 09:18 PM

I've taken images of several eclipses going back to 1979, using 1000 Oaks and Baader filter material, film and later digital. It is always a bit of a challenge to try to find the correct exposure settings. I haven't done it quite as scientifically as you, though smile.gif.

Thanks for the detailed reply. Good luck next spring!

Mark

Yes, I understand.  If you switch back and forth between filter products/types and rigs at different eclipses, you will always be guessing at the next eclipse.  With glass, my plan works every time.  It even worked when I was comparing my ISO 200 slide film from 2001 and 2002 to my digital images from 2017 and 2019.  That is the beauty of the chemistry of film, the physics of light, and the design of modern sensors; the adjusting of stops across ISO, f/stop, and shutter speed combinations is consistently the same through time.  If you always use glass, it doesn't matter if you change your rig around, the properly exposed full solar disk image is the baseline exposure all the time.  Thanks again for commenting.



#59 Francois314

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Posted 01 September 2023 - 10:57 PM

stupid question from a noob, how do you find the solar north ?



#60 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 02 September 2023 - 05:44 AM

stupid question from a noob, how do you find the solar north ?

That is actually a great question and essential to understand for eclipse photography.  You need to learn how to get the most out of Xavier Jubier's local circumstances pop-up box.  I've attached two pages from my book explaining it and a slide from a recent eclipse talk I gave explaining why it's important.  http://xjubier.free....gleMapFull.html

Attached Thumbnails

  • book page 1.jpg
  • book page 2.jpg
  • talk slide with beads.jpg

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#61 Francois314

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Posted 07 September 2023 - 02:35 AM

Thank you so much foxwoodastronomy, very interesting i can't believe i had not though of this.

 

I found this webpage on astropix: https://www.astropix...uring-totality/

explaining how to align the camera using a star tracker

 

bbb.jpg

 

To frame the coronal streamers with the Sun’s equator going parallel to the long side of the camera frame, do the following:

1. Align the long side of the camera frame with right ascension. If you place your telescope pointing north with the counterweight shaft vertical, the camera’s long side will be aligned with right ascension with the camera in a vertical orientation to the ground. Another way to do this is to align the camera so that the short side of the frame is parallel to the declination plate.
2. Now rotate the camera about 18 degrees counter clockwise to align the long side of the frame with the Sun’s equator.

 

the right ascension and shaft being vertical is confusing me. could someone explain the first point using simple words ? grin.gif



#62 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 07 September 2023 - 06:18 AM

Francois, you are welcome, happy to help.  I followed Jerry's posts in 2017 and he provided very helpful information because he is a great astrophotographer.  But this simple maneuver can be made more complicated than it needs to be.  Basically, you are just trying to point Solar North to the top of your sensor making the long axis of your sensor in line with the ecliptic for your observing location.  So, at the point of greatest eclipse (in Mexico), Solar North is basically straight up.  In the U.S. we are all to the east of the point of greatest eclipse, so the sensor needs to angle more and more as you move toward Maine.  You can just put a protractor on your computer screen and measure the angle from Xaviers' graphic, for your observing position.  Then reproduce that angle on your gear.  That is actually close enough unless you want to do the overlapping beads thing that I did.  Remember you are concerned with the 3-hour segment of the ecliptic for your observing location.


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#63 R Botero

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Posted 08 September 2023 - 02:32 AM

Another - simpler - way to roughly align your sensor, particularly if you are on an AltAz mount or very mobile is check the Sun spot formation a couple of days before or on the day on solarmonitor.org or another website and align your camera to those. North is typically shown up on those. I'm assuming there'll be Sun spots as well be on our way to solar maximum.

Roberto
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#64 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 08 September 2023 - 05:41 AM

Another - simpler - way to roughly align your sensor, particularly if you are on an AltAz mount or very mobile is check the Sun spot formation a couple of days before or on the day on solarmonitor.org or another website and align your camera to those. North is typically shown up on those. I'm assuming there'll be Sun spots as well be on our way to solar maximum.

Roberto

Roberto, that is a very good idea also and you are correct we should have sunspots.  Sunspots also aid with focusing, so it will be great.  I recently made two YouTube Short videos (<60 seconds) about the tricks of using the eclipse interactive maps to help with eclipse planning. The Part 1 video is the basics.  The Part 2 video may show some things that you guys did not know about.  I will give the links here.

Using the Interactive Eclipse Maps Part 1 https://youtube.com/shorts/cJ_7BWNvAeE

Using the Interactive Eclipse Maps Part 2 https://youtube.com/shorts/5cGM1Xkic0Q


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#65 winbag4

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Posted 08 September 2023 - 10:34 AM

the right ascension and shaft being vertical is confusing me. could someone explain the first point using simple words ? grin.gif

This tip only applies to equatorial tracking mounts. Basically, when the mount is in the "Home" position, the counterweight shaft is pointing straight down, and the declination is pointing directly north, at Polaris. When your mount is in this configuration, position your camera so that the long side of the frame is pointing up and down relative to the ground. You could say that the camera is sideways. Then, adjust the camera ~18° counterclockwise. This sets you up so that when you slew to the sun, the camera will turn in such a way that the long side of the frame will align with the solar equator.

 

Roberto, that is a very good idea also and you are correct we should have sunspots.  Sunspots also aid with focusing, so it will be great.  I recently made two YouTube Short videos (<60 seconds) about the tricks of using the eclipse interactive maps to help with eclipse planning. The Part 1 video is the basics.  The Part 2 video may show some things that you guys did not know about.  I will give the links here.

Using the Interactive Eclipse Maps Part 1 https://youtube.com/shorts/cJ_7BWNvAeE

Using the Interactive Eclipse Maps Part 2 https://youtube.com/shorts/5cGM1Xkic0Q

Very nice videos. It's worth noting that in Xavier's map, you can adjust for timezones with a tiny button over on the left of the screen: timezone.JPG


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#66 foxwoodastronomy

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Posted 09 September 2023 - 08:06 PM

This tip only applies to equatorial tracking mounts. Basically, when the mount is in the "Home" position, the counterweight shaft is pointing straight down, and the declination is pointing directly north, at Polaris. When your mount is in this configuration, position your camera so that the long side of the frame is pointing up and down relative to the ground. You could say that the camera is sideways. Then, adjust the camera ~18° counterclockwise. This sets you up so that when you slew to the sun, the camera will turn in such a way that the long side of the frame will align with the solar equator.

 

Very nice videos. It's worth noting that in Xavier's map, you can adjust for timezones with a tiny button over on the left of the screen: attachicon.gif timezone.JPG

Winbag, you are correct!! Thank you!  I have never used this feature on Xaviers' maps.  Maybe because I always use his maps for other things.  I completely missed it.  Thank you so much for pointing that out! Gordon


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#67 andyhawkins

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Posted 11 September 2023 - 02:37 PM

I'm planning on a Nikon Z9 + 800mmPF, considering 1.4 or 2.,0 teleconverter.

I shot the 2017 with a D750 + 200-500mm +TC2.  I used bracketing to get a range of Pix transitioning from Partial to total.

 

For the transition from Partial to Total, (Diamond Rings, Baileys, Prominences...) I was planning on 1/3EV brackets around the "sweet spot" ISO 100, Shutter 1/1000, f/9 (15.7EV)

 

But the Z9 stops after every bracket, so I can get 9 shots, then press the remote button again. So, I'm considering just one exposure setting for the Baileys, Diamond, Prominences.  Then go to bracketing for the Totality. Any comment? andy

Attached Thumbnails

  • _DSC6565_cropped_sized.jpg

Edited by andyhawkins, 11 September 2023 - 05:02 PM.

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#68 DelVento

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 06:52 AM

But the Z9 stops after every bracket, so I can get 9 shots, then press the remote button again. So, I'm considering just one exposure setting for the Baileys, Diamond, Prominences.  Then go to bracketing for the Totality. Any comment? andy

 

Not sure what you mean. I have the Z50 which is certainly much more limited than the Z9 and I can make the timelapse and braketing work at the same time, to basically continuously take the 9 bracketed shots and repeat without stopping.



#69 andyhawkins

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 01:07 PM

Not sure what you mean. I have the Z50 which is certainly much more limited than the Z9 and I can make the timelapse and braketing work at the same time, to basically continuously take the 9 bracketed shots and repeat without stopping.

Thanks hadn't thought of that! 7 brackets at 0.5s intervals

 

Tried it out with 9 and 7 brackets and 60 - 30  intervals (540 pix - 210 pix).  Every other time I would run this my Z8 & Z9 would lock up.  it seemed like it would take pictures slower and sometimes I would be able to "view" the pix but the last one was a red X and if I tried to autofocus it lock up and I would have to remove the battery.

Both were using the same CF Express Indmem Capture pro card.

Any others seen this lockup?



#70 BigStarz

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 03:14 PM

Hi

I'm coming from the UK so limited on what I can pack.

I will just have a Canon 100D DSLR, my tripod and inter valometer shutter remote control thingy, a few lenses and of course my home made solar lens cover, which I have tested on a bright sunny day and it works great.

Lenses  - 35mm / 75-300mm / 500mm and a x2 teleconverter. 

Would love to know ISO / exposure levels from any experienced users, or should I just stick it on Auto?

Cheers

Phil



#71 DelVento

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 05:34 PM

Thanks hadn't thought of that! 7 brackets at 0.5s intervals

 

Any others seen this lockup?

You are most welcome.

 

I do not know for sure, but I don't think you will find many people with Z8 or Z9 here, they are such expensive cameras... I suspect that people who have that kind of money would put it toward the telescope rather than the camera, topping at most to a camera such as the Z7II. On the other hand you can ask Tom Hogan, whose email you can find as a link in the copyright section of his website at https://bythom.com/ -- He knows the details of all cameras, and particularly of the top-of-the-line Nikon ones, better than anybody, and I'm sure he can answer your question. He always responded to any email I sent him (but not always in the way I hoped wink.gif )


Edited by DelVento, 12 September 2023 - 05:35 PM.


#72 andyhawkins

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 06:50 PM

Hi

I'm coming from the UK so limited on what I can pack.

I will just have a Canon 100D DSLR, my tripod and inter valometer shutter remote control thingy, a few lenses and of course my home made solar lens cover, which I have tested on a bright sunny day and it works great.

Lenses  - 35mm / 75-300mm / 500mm and a x2 teleconverter. 

Would love to know ISO / exposure levels from any experienced users, or should I just stick it on Auto?

Cheers

Phil

Below are some websites I've used. I've translated the Fstop, Shutter speed, and ISO from these sources to EV so I can compare them and get a feel for the deltas. 

 

https://www.mreclips...to/SEphoto.html

 

https://www.photopil...otography-guide

 

https://photographyl...a-solar-eclipse

 

Translated to EV in attached xls

 

 

 

Attached Files


Edited by andyhawkins, 12 September 2023 - 06:53 PM.


#73 andyhawkins

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Posted 12 September 2023 - 07:13 PM

You are most welcome.

 

I do not know for sure, but I don't think you will find many people with Z8 or Z9 here, they are such expensive cameras... I suspect that people who have that kind of money would put it toward the telescope rather than the camera, topping at most to a camera such as the Z7II. On the other hand you can ask Tom Hogan, whose email you can find as a link in the copyright section of his website at https://bythom.com/ -- He knows the details of all cameras, and particularly of the top-of-the-line Nikon ones, better than anybody, and I'm sure he can answer your question. He always responded to any email I sent him (but not always in the way I hoped wink.gif )

Thanks, I'll reach out to Tom H.

I did a series of experiments.  Suffice to say the Z8 + Indem card I have cannot shoot 18 FPS using the interval timer function (60x 9 brackets every 0.5 seconds).  I can make 18 FPS (60x 9 brackets every 0.5 seconds) and DX work and I can make 14 FPS (60x 7 brackets every 0.5 seconds) work. The Ritz Gear Video pro could not do the 18 FPS either, but it never locked up the camera. just paused and skipped some shots..



#74 BigStarz

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Posted 13 September 2023 - 12:58 AM

Below are some websites I've used. I've translated the Fstop, Shutter speed, and ISO from these sources to EV so I can compare them and get a feel for the deltas. 

 

https://www.mreclips...to/SEphoto.html

 

https://www.photopil...otography-guide

 

https://photographyl...a-solar-eclipse

 

Translated to EV in attached xls

That's brill, cheers, I can print of some tables, 

Hopefully there will be time to set a few settings and get that one good shot.

Thanks

Phil



#75 NightSkyD

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 10:42 PM

Anyone try to use the ASIAIR plus plan mode to set up exposure settings and times for the different partial phases, Bailey beads, diamond ring, and totality?


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