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6 hours of Whirlpool Help Please

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#1 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:05 AM

Ok so this has been my first real try at getting hours of data for a DSO photo. I'm using a C11 edge with hyperstar V3, zwo asi 533 cooled version. My mount is a celestron CGX. I have stacked all 625 photos in asi studio and used deep sky stacker. I get the same result in both. I have taken darks and flats as well. My expoure setting are 35 seconds with a gain of 150. I'm sure this is just a case of a newbie not knowing what to do. I'm not sure if what I'm asking is allowed and I'm apologize if I'm breaking the rules but could someone please take a look at my data and see what you could do with it? I would be very thankful to see what someone else that is more skilled could do with it and maybe give me some pointers to learn from. Like what tweaks and proccess you did with it. I am not sure how to share the files on here but if you would message me with your email I could send it that way. If someone knows of a way to upload on here that would be great too. 

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#2 jaydeepappas

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:12 AM

You can upload to google drive or similar, turn off any access restrictions, and share the link here. That will allow others to download the files.
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#3 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:40 AM

You can upload to google drive or similar, turn off any access restrictions, and share the link here. That will allow others to download the files.

Ok I belive I done this right. Here is a link. https://drive.google...6N1?usp=sharing


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#4 Robert7980

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:47 AM

Looks ok to me, your capture details don’t sound bad, I don’t think you did anything wrong there… 

 

‘Processing images is something that takes time to learn and get comfortable with, so that’s more likely where you’re losing some control over the final outcome. Your image looks good to me for your skill level, so you probably just need a little help getting your workflow sorted out to go in the direction you want. I think you’re on solid foundation though, I see nothing that’s just horribly bad, just a few minor adjustments should make a big difference. 


Edited by Robert7980, 14 April 2024 - 12:47 AM.

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#5 Robert7980

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:49 AM

Ok I belive I done this right. Here is a link. https://drive.google...6N1?usp=sharing

You got it, it’s more traditional though to share a stacked image than the individual frames… So if you have that that’s all that’s needed… 

 

- Nevermind I think I see the stacked tiff… 


Edited by Robert7980, 14 April 2024 - 12:51 AM.


#6 james7ca

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:50 AM

You probably need to do a color calibration and note that some software (like PixInsight) will allow you to color calibrate against reference stars in your image. Also, it looks like you rotated the camera or scope between imaging sessions and that is causing the black areas around the border of the image. However, there is little that can be done about the latter, so you'll just have to crop those areas out of the image.

 

Also, while you can certainly image galaxies with a Hyperstar you're trading off image scale and detail for capture speed when you do this. Thus, that particular combination of optics and camera might be better suited for larger targets (of which there are not many right now, with spring sometimes called "galaxy season").

 

All that said, I agree with the other users, it looks to be a fairly good data set and it may just need a little "tweaking."


Edited by james7ca, 14 April 2024 - 01:11 AM.

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#7 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:52 AM

You got it, it’s more traditional though to share a stacked image than the individual frames… So if you have that that’s all that’s needed… 

 

- Nevermind I think I see the stacked tiff… 

Here is a link to the final stacked picture. I just uploaded it. https://drive.google...iew?usp=sharing


Edited by Sheremy01, 14 April 2024 - 12:54 AM.


#8 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 12:56 AM

Looks ok to me, your capture details don’t sound bad, I don’t think you did anything wrong there… 

 

‘Processing images is something that takes time to learn and get comfortable with, so that’s more likely where you’re losing some control over the final outcome. Your image looks good to me for your skill level, so you probably just need a little help getting your workflow sorted out to go in the direction you want. I think you’re on solid foundation though, I see nothing that’s just horribly bad, just a few minor adjustments should make a big difference. 

Thank you.



#9 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 01:10 AM

Here is a link to the stacked copy. https://drive.google...iew?usp=sharing

#10 rj144

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 01:13 AM

You say you took darks and flats.  Did you take bias?



#11 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 01:16 AM

No I didn’t take bias and I think I over exposed the flats because some were yellow. I could use some good advice on calibration frames as well. I read a lot of posts of the forums but couldn’t seem to find a really good step by step.

#12 rj144

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 01:19 AM

No I didn’t take bias and I think I over exposed the flats because some were yellow. I could use some good advice on calibration frames as well. I read a lot of posts of the forums but couldn’t seem to find a really good step by step.

Flats don't work without bias.  Take bias... they are the easiest of all the calibration frames.



#13 Robert7980

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 01:40 AM

Your data is not bad, there's a few minor problems mostly with gradients and you might need some optics adjustments.. Overall it's pretty good, here's my attempt at a rough edit to pull some of the data out... 

 

The processing was mostly in PI with SPCC to correct colors, SCNR to remove the remaining greens, Curves to boost the saturation and make a minor stretch adjustments. GHS for the final stretch. Local Histogram EQ for a little contrast boost in the details... BXT and NXT to taste to correct seeing and remove a little background noise... Nothing radical, I went a little heavy on the color and contrast for more dramatic effect, but that could easily be toned down for a more smooth and natural look... 

 

Cropped out some of the problem areas with some optics defects and gradients, but mostly to get a little better framing of the target to my taste... Saving myself some work made that decision easier... What’s cropped is visible in your original so there’s no mystery. I saturated the stars a little more than most would for a galaxy shot, but I thought it was neat looking so I left it as is, also an easy thing to modify to your taste with just a saturation adjustment… 

 

95% of this is careful use of the GHS stretch tool to pull the background up without blowing out too many details in the core… That’s where the magic happens, the other 5% is some tools to increase the resolution and contrast. Everything else is standard appearance tuning, colors and such… I’m not great at this, I’m sure others could do better with it. 

 

get.jpg?insecure


Edited by Robert7980, 14 April 2024 - 02:27 AM.

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#14 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 09:07 AM

Your data is not bad, there's a few minor problems mostly with gradients and you might need some optics adjustments.. Overall it's pretty good, here's my attempt at a rough edit to pull some of the data out... 

 

The processing was mostly in PI with SPCC to correct colors, SCNR to remove the remaining greens, Curves to boost the saturation and make a minor stretch adjustments. GHS for the final stretch. Local Histogram EQ for a little contrast boost in the details... BXT and NXT to taste to correct seeing and remove a little background noise... Nothing radical, I went a little heavy on the color and contrast for more dramatic effect, but that could easily be toned down for a more smooth and natural look... 

 

Cropped out some of the problem areas with some optics defects and gradients, but mostly to get a little better framing of the target to my taste... Saving myself some work made that decision easier... What’s cropped is visible in your original so there’s no mystery. I saturated the stars a little more than most would for a galaxy shot, but I thought it was neat looking so I left it as is, also an easy thing to modify to your taste with just a saturation adjustment… 

 

95% of this is careful use of the GHS stretch tool to pull the background up without blowing out too many details in the core… That’s where the magic happens, the other 5% is some tools to increase the resolution and contrast. Everything else is standard appearance tuning, colors and such… I’m not great at this, I’m sure others could do better with it. 

 

get.jpg?insecure

Thank you for taking time to see what you could do with the image. I had no idea the dust lanes were looking that good. I have a long ways to go in learning to process the image. I’m going to check out PI and watch some YouTube how to videos. Thanks for the help.


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#15 smiller

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 09:23 AM

I’m beginning to believe that once you have your equipment basically operating, the processing of images is now much more than half of astrophotography with respect to the final image quality.  This is where your next big investment in time (and probably dollars) needs to be.


Edited by smiller, 14 April 2024 - 09:24 AM.

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#16 unimatrix0

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 09:56 AM

I’m beginning to believe that once you have your equipment basically operating, the processing of images is now much more than half of astrophotography with respect to the final image quality.  This is where your next big investment in time (and probably dollars) needs to be.

Well, a successful astrophotographer needs 5 skills if you ask me. 

 

1. Basic astronomy (find DSO's, being aware what's on the night sky, operating a mount,knoweldge of celestial objects, knowledge of basic terms like HourAngle, Meridian, sidereal speed, magnitude etc. )

2. Computer/ electronics technician (knowledge in connections, voltages, amps, usb speeds, windows/linux/mac skills)

3. Photographic/optics specialist ( knowledge of how cameras work, knows about optics related to how various optical tubes behave- mirror vs glass; focal lengths, spectrum analysis, sensor behavior, etc)

4. Meteorology - (following closely and knowing weather related phenomena- how it affects the atmosphere and how it affects imaging through the atmosphere, identifying issues caused by the atmosphere)

5. Photographic artist (knowledge to use and apply various techniques to create an image out of raw data, that is mostly noise and faint signal, being creative and having an acquired taste)

 

Find your weak point and work on it, study it, practice it.  Ignore any of it, and will be unable to progress any further. 

 

 

Maybe I should put these in my job resume. lol.gif


Edited by unimatrix0, 14 April 2024 - 09:59 AM.

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#17 Robert7980

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 10:49 AM

Thank you for taking time to see what you could do with the image. I had no idea the dust lanes were looking that good. I have a long ways to go in learning to process the image. I’m going to check out PI and watch some YouTube how to videos. Thanks for the help.

You’re welcome, there’s more in there and much better results are possible, but I’m glad I could show you at least something different than you were getting… Just hang in there, in my experience this is a game of inches, there are no quick fixes or one answer, it’s dozens or hundreds of subtle and small improvements, they are usually simple and you’re probably already doing most of them. 
 

When you make an edit change, stop and look at the result, if it started doing bad things back off some and start again, it’s almost like you’re trying to make final touches on a brand new image at every step… On your image here I probably made 25 separate stretch adjustments, all of them pretty tiny. There aren’t any tools that can do it in one or two steps that I know of…

 

If you need to go a long way with a tool it seems to almost always work better by doing it in stages, so instead of dragging a slider directly to 80%, make five 20% adjustments… So it’s more about that than anything else… 

 

Sneaking up on things helps a lot, because we have very limited dynamic range to work with and it’s incredibly easy to exceed it by being too aggressive. 

 

I’m beginning to believe that once you have your equipment basically operating, the processing of images is now much more than half of astrophotography with respect to the final image quality.  This is where your next big investment in time (and probably dollars) needs to be.

There’s no doubt, it’s probably 90%… I remember when it was the other way around, and your fate was in the hands of a teenager operating the processing machine at the local camera shop, or worse the drugstore laugh.gif   … These are definitely better times… Can you imagine having a high end research grade photo processing lab at home? Wow… I feel for those who can’t appreciate the difference we’ve achieved over the just the last 3 decades…  



#18 HubSky

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 04:53 PM

Are you talking about the box/square like artifacts in the corners of the uncropped image?  The data for the galaxy looks fine.  The corners look like you have one or more subframes that are not centered in relation to the majority of the subframes.  You can go through your subframes and see if any are like that.  If you didn't, you can also select "intersection" for the combining mode in DSS which will create a stack where all the subframes intersect.  



#19 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 05:05 PM

No I meant the galaxy its self was looking blurry and I couldn’t get the colors to pop. I couldn’t get the dust lanes to show that good. I’ve got a trial of pix insight I’m playing with. I consider myself to be fairly comfortable with photoshop but pix insight so far is making me pull my hair out.

#20 HubSky

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 05:33 PM

No I meant the galaxy its self was looking blurry and I couldn’t get the colors to pop. I couldn’t get the dust lanes to show that good. I’ve got a trial of pix insight I’m playing with. I consider myself to be fairly comfortable with photoshop but pix insight so far is making me pull my hair o

 

Like others said, the galaxy data is fine, especially if you're going to crop into it, just need experience in using PI to bring the most out of it.  But if you wanted to keep the image uncropped, then what's going on with the corners would need to be worked out.  



#21 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 05:35 PM

Yea the corners are fine. I’m going to crop it so that will fix it. Just need to work on my processing skills.

#22 bbasiaga

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 06:57 PM

Did you take the images on different nights?  Or rotate the camera at some point during the session?  The dark edges look like field rotation - like some of the subs were not lined up with the rest.  

 

Brian



#23 Kerry D. Green

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 09:30 PM

This data was really good!  I did notice what looked like some walking noise that was a challenge to deal with and, as mentioned, I think your flats didn't do all they could without the bias frames.  There is plenty of dust to capture in this one, I cropped it to include the background galaxies as I thought this was an interesting look.  This was Pixinsight: Crop, gradient correction, bxt, spcc, bxt, nxt, separate stars, ghs, color masks for saturation boost, local histogram equalization, exponential transformation, Arcsinh stretch of stars, screen stars back in.

 

M51_4-14-2024_sm.jpg

 

 


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#24 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 10:33 PM

You’re welcome, there’s more in there and much better results are possible, but I’m glad I could show you at least something different than you were getting… Just hang in there, in my experience this is a game of inches, there are no quick fixes or one answer, it’s dozens or hundreds of subtle and small improvements, they are usually simple and you’re probably already doing most of them. 
 

When you make an edit change, stop and look at the result, if it started doing bad things back off some and start again, it’s almost like you’re trying to make final touches on a brand new image at every step… On your image here I probably made 25 separate stretch adjustments, all of them pretty tiny. There aren’t any tools that can do it in one or two steps that I know of…

 

If you need to go a long way with a tool it seems to almost always work better by doing it in stages, so instead of dragging a slider directly to 80%, make five 20% adjustments… So it’s more about that than anything else… 

 

Sneaking up on things helps a lot, because we have very limited dynamic range to work with and it’s incredibly easy to exceed it by being too aggressive. 

 

There’s no doubt, it’s probably 90%… I remember when it was the other way around, and your fate was in the hands of a teenager operating the processing machine at the local camera shop, or worse the drugstore laugh.gif   … These are definitely better times… Can you imagine having a high end research grade photo processing lab at home? Wow… I feel for those who can’t appreciate the difference we’ve achieved over the just the last 3 decades…  

 

 

This data was really good!  I did notice what looked like some walking noise that was a challenge to deal with and, as mentioned, I think your flats didn't do all they could without the bias frames.  There is plenty of dust to capture in this one, I cropped it to include the background galaxies as I thought this was an interesting look.  This was Pixinsight: Crop, gradient correction, bxt, spcc, bxt, nxt, separate stars, ghs, color masks for saturation boost, local histogram equalization, exponential transformation, Arcsinh stretch of stars, screen stars back in.

 

attachicon.gif M51_4-14-2024_sm.jpg

So I tried best I could to follow a quick step by step I found on using PI. I've be able to make a pretty good effort I think at reprocessing the data.

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#25 Sheremy01

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 10:52 PM

I do have a few quick questions. First this is roughly a little over 6 hours of data. Would it benefit any to go to 10 hours? Secondly and this probably won’t be easy to explain to a newbie lol. How are yall getting the data to come out looking sharper and cleaner than I’m doing? I’ve been playing with PI and couldn’t get color and had to go back into photoshop to get color, but I can’t seem to get the final product to come out as sharp looking.


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