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Author Topic: Stars above.  (Read 89987 times)

niteclicks

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #75 on: January 31, 2014, 12:50:56 PM »
Its hard to give general settings because the sky varies from literally mile to mile . Here is a single frame of M8 and the final from some years ago when I started. The single frame is at iso 800 (max the 40D could really do cleanly) 60 sec with a 200mm f4 scope. The stack is 30 frames processed with Images Plus.  I haven't done much since I moved but hope to get my mount setup permanently this year and get started again. If I could manage this from a noisy 40D I can't wait to see what the 5DIII can do, and I've learned since then too.

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #75 on: January 31, 2014, 12:50:56 PM »

Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #76 on: January 31, 2014, 01:00:15 PM »
Thanks niteclicks, keep me in mind if other thoughts pop into your head.  Since I got my first DSLR a couple years ago, and now being retired, I'm like a kid at Christmas with his first camera.  Moving up to the 6D was a great boost too.

Jack
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niteclicks

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #77 on: January 31, 2014, 01:15:09 PM »
I would think you should have some really nice skies up there. Nice way to retire shoot all night, process all day, who needs sleep. 8)

Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #78 on: January 31, 2014, 01:50:04 PM »
niteclicks, right on, but I have a wife.  Of course that has its benefits too!  Night sky here is often very clear.

Jack
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dcm

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #79 on: January 31, 2014, 02:51:11 PM »
Stellarium Mobile on a smart phone can help you get oriented to the stars outdoors.  I use Stellarium on my desktop/laptop to scout things before hand.  There are a few methods that can help you find Polaris using other constellations at reference points.

http://survivaltopics.com/how-to-find-the-north-star/ (simple version)
http://www.physics.ucla.edu/~huffman/finddip.html  (shows seasonal orientation change)
http://davidburchnavigation.blogspot.com/2013/03/finding-north-star.html (other constellations)

Practice helps.  Go out at night, even when you don't shoot and pick out the stars.   I can consistently pick out the dippers, North Star and several constellations without any help.
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Sporgon

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #80 on: January 31, 2014, 03:38:01 PM »
85/1.8 @2.8

Can't believe how fast the stars move. Made me feel quite dizzy when I saw the frames.

joshmurrah

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #81 on: January 31, 2014, 04:29:39 PM »
pbase(dot)com(slash)emagowan(slash)processing

I'm soooo gonna try that, cool tips/ideas!
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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #81 on: January 31, 2014, 04:29:39 PM »

Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #82 on: January 31, 2014, 05:05:49 PM »
(Dumb) Question anyone.  How does the movement of the stars and planets and moon relate wrt. photography? 

Is there any way of combining the landscape stationary with tracked stars?

Jack
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Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #83 on: January 31, 2014, 05:06:32 PM »
dcm, thanks for that.

Jack
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Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #84 on: January 31, 2014, 05:33:44 PM »
dcm, those were great links for finding Polaris but I'm still a little uncertain about locating it on my circle in the alignment telescope of the iOptron tracker.  I'm also wondering just how critical it is to place, like how long would exposures be where the lack of perfect alignment would show?

Jack
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niteclicks

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #85 on: January 31, 2014, 06:17:34 PM »
dcm, those were great links for finding Polaris but I'm still a little uncertain about locating it on my circle in the alignment telescope of the iOptron tracker.  I'm also wondering just how critical it is to place, like how long would exposures be where the lack of perfect alignment would show?

Jack

 Jack if you got the polar scope with the ioptron you can use stellarium and turn on "show equatorial grid" then zoom in on Polaris this will show you where on the circle Polaris should be, but you need to check your polar scope frist to see if the image is mirrored and or flipped ( do this in daylight) that way you will know if you need to set Polaris mirrored and or flipped . confused Yet ?  You said you are handy, making a mount for the ioptrom (worm and gears ) that will let you make small adjustments to the horizon and latitude will greatly simplify setting up. The better the alignment the longer the exposure and the deeper you can go. The nice thing about the 6D (from what I've heard) iso 3200 should be usable, at least to start, take a few long exposures say 1,2,3 min ea look at your trailing. say you were at iso 400 and trailing was starting to show at 2 min , bump up to 800 and shoot 1 min. get something to play with and work on getting a better alignment next time. For the most part (other than comets , etc.) These things will be there forever but you wont and once you are hooked you will find good skies less common than you think, I know on average its cloudy the same amount but it seems to be more now that I pay closer attention to it.

dcm

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #86 on: January 31, 2014, 06:19:25 PM »
dcm, those were great links for finding Polaris but I'm still a little uncertain about locating it on my circle in the alignment telescope of the iOptron tracker.  I'm also wondering just how critical it is to place, like how long would exposures be where the lack of perfect alignment would show?

Jack

The Vixen Polarie has similar aiming mechanisms.  A small sight hole or a optional scope you can insert for more precise alignment.  The site hole method wasn't very accurate in my experience so I prefer to use the scope for final alignment.   I start with the two eye method using the site hole to get me in the ball park, with one eye looking through the site hole and the other eye unobstructed.  Searching for Polaris through the scope doesn't work very well.  It takes a little practice but I can usually get Polaris in the site hole without too much trouble.  Then I use the scope to fine tune my aim.    The Vixen scope is a bit different, with dials to set date/time/meridian on the scope - no app needed.  The iOptron scope and phone app use a different approach - you adjust have to figure out where to place Polaris in the view on the scope based on angle and radius.  Page 9 of the manual had a pretty good description - I think I could work with it.  Is there something else I'm missing.
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Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #87 on: January 31, 2014, 07:21:38 PM »
Thanks dcm,  Although I'm not a dummy in general (don't ask my wife though), I'm coming to this topic with total ignoarance so even the terminology is confusing, but I think I've just about got it.  I've just reread page 9 and where I got off track is that the app I downloaded to my computer was displaying the location of Polaris on the circle quite in contradiction to the printed page that showed the big dipper and suggested holding the page to match the sky and then placing Polaris on the center of the three circles, accordingly.

The shots I took apparently had Polaris fairly close based on the printed page big dipper.  The app would have had me placing Polaris far from that but again my question is, as long as you've got Polaris into the region of the inner three circles is it that critical??  Would I see significant trails in 30 seconds?

Unfortunately it's too cold to just stand out there and fool around! ;)

Jack
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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #87 on: January 31, 2014, 07:21:38 PM »

dcm

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #88 on: January 31, 2014, 09:02:19 PM »
The location of the green dot/plus changes.  The position (10h24.1m, r=40.8min) illustrated in the manual is for the lat/lon/time given - NW of Boston.  Yours will likely be different.   

Getting Polaris to the right h/m/r will give you more accurate tracking and allow longer exposures.  Just getting it on the screen is a pretty good start and probably about as well as people that buy the low end version without the scope are able to achieve or building a barn door tracker.  I'd expect slight elongation/oval if you don't get the tracking axis aligned properly.

The Vixen Polarie seems to use the same type mechanism.  The manual is a bit better and provides maximum shutter speed for different focal lengths and drive speeds on page 19 and 20.  You might use this as a guideline.
http://www.vixenoptics.com/PDF/POLARIE%20Manual.pdf

If you have a north facing window with a clear view of Polaris, you can test this out indoors without freezing to death.  Aim your tracking unit at Polaris and then setup the camera aimed at Polaris as well.  if everything is working you shouldn't see the normal circular star trails and the stars should stay pinpoints.  Try decreasing the shutter speed until it does.  You'll probably need a remote like the TC-80N3 to do this.  I may have to try this myself.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 10:14:16 PM by dcm »
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Jack Douglas

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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #89 on: January 31, 2014, 11:09:19 PM »
Thanks dcm, at least I'm off and running and I'll learn all the tricks in due course.

Jack
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Re: Stars above.
« Reply #89 on: January 31, 2014, 11:09:19 PM »