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 Post subject: An evening with Orion...
PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:55 pm 
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Sorry, no pics yet as they're still in the process of being taken. But I noticed the sky was clear and am making use of it while I can!

Been seeing how deep I can go. On the great nebula I've gone as much as 4 minutes at 400mm f/5.6. Going for the bigger picture (and faster lens), I dropped down to the 150mm f/2.8, when I noticed some red stuff around the belt. Looked it up: the horsehead nebula! Also flaming nebula, lump star and possibly more. Now I've stuck a 50mm on to get the whole of the main section of Orion in one shot and see if anything else pops up. I'm even going beyond the light filter's rating of f/2.8 running at f/2 just to see what happens...

There has been an occasional cloud passing overhead but thankfully they're few and far between. I'm planning on going back to 400mm for the horsehead, and if I feel lucky I think I can see a fuzzy blob elsewhere in the sky which are probably Pleiades but I think that one is beyond my local conditions.

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3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:07 am 
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Had to give up as the patchy cloud was getting less patchy.

Have one of Orion's belt for starters...

Image

Canon 450D, Sigma 150mm macro, Astronomik CLS filter
Single shot: 4 minutes, f/2.8, ISO400
RAW convert in DPP plus tweaks in PSE9.

I know, the Sigma has quite some vignetting wide open hence the square crop I've gone for.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:56 am 
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Ok, one more quick edit before I go to bed.

Image

Canon 450D, 100-400L, Astronomik CLS filter
4 shot stack, each: 2 minutes, f/5.6, ISO1600
RAW stack in DSS, export via 16-bit TIF to Dynamic-Photo HDR, save as jpeg and tweak in PSE9.

Just how do you not burn out the core while keeping the very faint running man?

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:31 am 
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Hi popo,

Oh dear, now I feel utterly ashamed that I was indoors watching the Seahawks and the Saints instead of taking advantage of a clear moonless sky. Nice work: as I found out (here) the Orion nebula can be very challenging as exposing for the fainter regions results in blown highlights.

Bob.

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OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:12 am 
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Nice shots popo! But, please, use your 300D at Orion! There's so much IR gas in Orion which you cant photograph with the 450D.

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Tamron 17-50 2.8, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM,
Canon 18-55 II plus lots of Minolta MD/M42 lenses and bodies


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:30 am 
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Bob, you did save yourself from the cold at least, but there's so few clear nights I had to make the most of this one while it was there. I have to admit I only found out by accident myself that the sky was clear, as the weather widget on my desktop told me! Only then did I look outside to check, and saw a pretty clear sky.

Ruben, trying the 300D is on my to do list, but that's where I really want an IR camera with live view. I don't really have any way to focus accurately on that and I doubt it is parfocal with the rest of my kit.

Forgot to say, there was one casualty last night. In my haste to set up I left the polar finder in the mount during use, which was no problem until I knocked it when changing lenses and it dropped onto hard paving. That bent the long section. I unscrewed it and found it had cross threaded being only made of plastic, and in unscrewing it a fair amount of plastic had shaved off. I cleaned up as many loose bits as I could and screwed it back in aligned again, but there's still a bunch of shavings visible inside now.

If you look about 3/4 up the left edge of the 1st photo, there's a faint fuzzy blob which on looking up I believe is M78. I know I took a bit of a scattergun approach, to see what's up there :D Got a few hits, including a faint reproduction of a large arc of nebulosity to lower left of Orion I haven't managed to get a pleasing process out of yet.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:45 pm 
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@Bob, you witnessed a great underdog win though :D

Awesome shots, popo. Love ho they turned out.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:07 pm 
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As a heads up for those in the UK, it is looking like another clear evening over most areas, so I'll be having another go a bit later. Orion is still too low right now, but Pleiades is already within my view. I've just put the kit out to cool down ready :)

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:50 pm 
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... and I'm all charged up and ready to go and there's a thin layer of cirrus - can hardly even make out Polaris. :roll: Reminds me why I decided to pull back a couple of years ago from spending big bucks on astrophotography. :evil:

Maybe it'll clear later. :idea:

Bob.

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OM-D E-M1 + ED 12-40mm f/2.8, H-F007014E, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 45mm 1:1.8, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 75mm 1:1.8, L-RS014150E.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:56 pm 
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Was just about to say the same... the moon is definitely fuzzy looking right now with no obvious cloud in that region. Can only keep looking!

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Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:06 pm 
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I'm officially giving up for the night. It seems to be getting worse, not better in cloud terms.

Still fired off a couple IR shots to see what happens.

Image
EF-S 15-85. 30s at 15mm, f/3.5, ISO800.

Image
Zeiss 50mm makro. 30s at f/2, ISO800.

Colours as they came out of camera WB setting, which historically ACR doesn't interpret correctly. Oh, I used ACR on these.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:33 pm 
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Same problem here. And I'd forgotten how demanding astrophotography is. :oops:

The seeing was so poor I couldn't find Polaris in the mounting's polar finder when I set it up so I did a best guess. Not good enough as the two minute exposures all had trails on them and I didn't think to check at 100% until too late. :oops:

Oh well, at least I've finally had a test run with the Macbook Air controlling the 5D2. Twenty 2 minute exposures, each separated by 90 seconds and about half of which were "darks" only depleted the Air's battery by about 12% as I was able to turn the screen backlight right down to zero for most of the time. So much more civilised than my old ThinkPad, which gave up the ghost well over a year ago.

The 5D2, which got it's first use for astrophotography tonight as a result of the Macbook Air purchase, when paired with my 85mm at f/1.2 and my 72mm IDAS Light Pollution Suppression (LPS) Filter looks as though it will be a fairly potent combination once I get my head back into gear. I'll post in my own thread when I finally get some images without star trails. :lol:

The weather forecast is pretty miserable for the next few days by which time the Moon will become an issue. It's not easy, is it? :roll:

Bob.

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OM-D E-M1 + ED 12-40mm f/2.8, H-F007014E, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 45mm 1:1.8, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 75mm 1:1.8, L-RS014150E.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:48 pm 
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Definitely not easy. And one of the reasons I keep telling myself not to spend a ton more cash on dedicated astrophotography kit, despite the shopaholic parts of my brain telling me even astrographs can be used normally too! Polaris here was barely visible to the naked eye.

The other option would be to go for a very fast lens, although my body filter is only rated to f/2.8 and slower so I'd have to look again for a lens front filter if I went that route.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:25 pm 
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I had a body filter (why do they call them "front filters"?) on my 40D but, of course, it was useless on the 5D2. But because of my lack of a laptop computer until very recently (essential for astrophotography IMHO) I didn't need a new LPS filter. The 72mm filter was a big investment but essential, even here in the Cotswolds, when working at fast apertures. And if I get the EF 135mm f/2.0L USM, which is on my fantasy list, it'll fit that as well. 8)

Anyway, thanks for inspiring me to get out of my comfy chair. Now that I've an inkling how the kit performs I think it won't be too long before I'm out again even if it does mean staying awake through the early hours...

Update: I managed a bit of a rescue on last night's imaging and posted the result here. :evil:

Bob.

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OM-D E-M1 + ED 12-40mm f/2.8, H-F007014E, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 45mm 1:1.8, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 75mm 1:1.8, L-RS014150E.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:34 am 
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Keep an eye on Betelgeuse, its the top red star on the left of Orions belt.
They say its going supernova and may have done already, should be a good light show. I read that they think its about 640 lights years away at present.
Actually you can see it the photos above, its the brightest star above Orion on the left.


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