First timer, focusing (?) problem

Discussions of Electronically Assisted Astronomy using the Live Stacking feature.
psy1280
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Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by psy1280 » Wed Nov 27, 2019 6:46 pm

Dave,
Once again, thank you for taking the time to make this all clear. I'm ready! And hoping for a chance this Friday night.

Can't thank you enough,
Joe

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turfpit
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Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by turfpit » Wed Nov 27, 2019 10:06 pm

Joe
I'm interested in post-processing of deepsky images, is there an advantage to using capture vs lifestack?
It is a matter of personal preference rather than advantage.

Traditional capture involves:
  • Capturing some light frames, then optionally dark frames, flat frames & bias frames.
  • 3rd party software would then be needed to calibrate (process) the frames and produce a stack.
  • The stack would then be post-processed to produce a final image.
Examples of typical software used would be some combination of - Deep Sky Stacker, Nebulosity, Siril, Astro Pixel Processor, PixinSight, Photoshop, Gimp (this list is not exhaustive). All the packages will require a non-trivial investment in time and effort to master.

This type of capture can be done using mono or one shot colour cameras. LRGB or narrowband filters can be used to provide colour or filter selected wavelengths.

Live Stack capture involves:
  • Optionally create a master dark frame and master flat frame.
  • Capture light frames (apply master dark & master flat if required) and build a stack.
  • Optionally, untouched individual light frames can be saved by selecting Save Individual Frames. These unprocessed frames are saved in a folder called rawframes for later processing in the traditional way.
  • The Histogram tab in Live Stack allows stretching and colour balance to be manipulated.
  • The Enhancement tab allows sharpening and noise reduction to be performed on the stack.
  • A final processed stack can be saved. There may be a requirement for finalising processing in software such as Gimp or Photoshop.
This type of capture can be done using mono or one shot colour cameras.

Live Stack will require a non-trivial investment in time and effort to master.

Live Stack is popular with the NSN community https://www.nightskiesnetwork.com/ as the ongoing capture sessions can be broadcast over the internet allowing for collaboration and support.

My own choice is the traditional method in order to separate out capture and processing. See https://www.astrobin.com/users/turfpit/ for my progress to date over the last 3 years.

Whichever route you choose will require effort for both data acquisition and processing. ;)

Dave

psy1280
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Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2018 4:52 pm

Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by psy1280 » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:32 pm

Dave,
I'm hoping you can offer some suggestion. Last night I almost froze to death, however I think I may have inched forward. I did many captures and Livestacks. Unfortunately, when I look at my rawframe pictures I see terrible, grainy (???) images. (FYI: Using the Bahtinov mask, I think my focus was much better). When I look at the FITS capture, I get a much better, resolved, image (although it was in beautiful, vibrant color on my monitor, it shows up black and white here, I'm hoping maybe the color is somehow embedded in the image)...the file says 1271 stacked (I'm assuming this was done in Livestack). The grainy picture above I assume was a single frame of the many rawframes I was trying to stack. I have no clue why the difference, i.e., grainy vs. decent image). The detail in the black and white seems impressive.

I did both captures and livestacks, but I can't tell the difference in the capture file (actually, I don't know where the captures are?) I only see rawframe images and "stack" file captures. Again, I assume the "stack" file was the result of the live stack. Right?

I opened the above FITS file in "Ultra File Opener," but I can't extract it to do any photoshop (at least I have figured that out yet). Can you recommend a Fits converter program? Is there a way to save as, "all files" instead of FITS (I used the down arrow to save and then 32 bit raw).

I know it's all confusing, perhaps you can tell me what else to post so you can help.
I'll wait for your response (before getting too depressed) :-)

Thank you for giving me hope with all this

Joe
Attachments
Capture_00001.jpg
Capture_00001.jpg (51.19 KiB) Viewed 73 times
Stack_32bits_1271frames_137s.png
Stack_32bits_1271frames_137s.png (44.34 KiB) Viewed 73 times
frame_10.png
frame_10.png (450.26 KiB) Viewed 73 times

psy1280
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2018 4:52 pm

Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by psy1280 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 3:35 pm

Dave,
I realized that my grainy colored image of Orion in my last post needs to be stacked. I tried to do this in Deep Sky Stacker, but wasn't able to. After importing 5K raw images, I got the following error message, "The checked pictures are not compatibles (width height, number of colors, number of channel, only one master dark, offset and flat). I'd love to see this images stacked. Any help/suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Joe

psy1280
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2018 4:52 pm

Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by psy1280 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:43 am

I was able to stack some of the Orion images (above grainy photo). I must admit I'm having a good deal of trouble using Deep Sky Stacker, but nevertheless, I was able to come out with this image. I would love for any feedback as to what's lacking in this image (i.e., focus, etc., etc.). I did use a Bahtinov mask, but the photo clearly lacks detail and clarity. Perhaps it's my tracking? I believe the FLD was about 64 on this stack.

Any and all feedback more than welcome...I just don't know what I could do to improve

[AV TO USB2.0]
Resolution=720x480
FPS=30.00
Colour Space=YUY2
Output Format=SER file (*.ser)
Frame Rate Limit=Maximum
Timestamp Frames=Off
Brightness=32
Contrast=128
Hue=0
Saturation=128
Gamma=0
Banding Threshold=35
Banding Suppression=0
Apply Flat=None
Subtract Dark=None
#Black Point
Display Black Point=0
#MidTone Point
Display MidTone Point=0.5
#White Point
Display White Point=1
TimeStamp=2019-12-01T02:03:04.2268505Z
SharpCapVersion=3.2.6086.0
TotalExposure(s)=136.939832699999
StackedFrames=1271




Joe
Attachments
Xmas photo 4-3.jpg
Xmas photo 4-3.jpg (44.88 KiB) Viewed 56 times

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turfpit
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Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by turfpit » Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:25 pm

Joe

Looking at the Bahtinov Mask shot in your previous post, I would say that you have got good focus. If I recall, you have a Revolution R2 Imager. That type of CCTV camera does not really expose its settings to SharpCap, which means you have to work inside the camera's menu system. There are instructions on the Revolution website which describe the settings in detail.

A search for Revolution R2 Imager YouTube turns up some helpful and informative videos such as https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WNjiOCKO-b8.

This search on Astrobin for Revolution R2 Imager
https://www.astrobin.com/search/?q=revo ... &d=i&t=all returns 5 images

This search on Astrobin for ZWO ASI 224MC https://www.astrobin.com/search/?q=asi%20224mc&page=18 returns 18 pages of images. 18 pages of images including deep sky objects shows what can be achieved with a $250 conventional astro imaging camera.

I will let you draw you own conclusions from the information presented.

Dave

psy1280
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Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by psy1280 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:05 pm

Thank you Dave, time for more research. You've been a big help!!!

Joe

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turfpit
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Re: First timer, focusing (?) problem

Post by turfpit » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:51 pm

Cheers Joe. Your tenacity is commendable.

Dave

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