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02-18-2013, 12:22 AM   #286
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QuoteOriginally posted by downhill Quote
Stone and Dr. Who. yeah I understood that for long exposures you would need an equatorial mount.

I made my own 10 inch Dobson about 20 years ago after gaining interest in them from watching a program on PBS. I even ground my own mirror. I sold it when I had to relocate for my job and just got busy with life. This next go round I'm not interested in building but looking at some of those Orion Dobs with Goto the goto features are really started to get my attention.

I've seen some pretty impressive pictures taken with DSLR's. and those scopes but of course tons of stacking. I think I might be interested but even the moon and planets seem pretty doable with a Dob.
Just remember even if field rotation doesn't mess up stacking, taking 36 x 15s exposures is not the same as taking 3 x 3 minute exposures.

02-19-2013, 05:24 PM   #287
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Some of these images are stunning, I guess I might as well put up my image of the Moon taken on my Birthday 2 days ago in Manchester with an old lens(80-200mm Auto Makinon f4.5(?) never heard of this lens, got it for Christmas 30 yrs ago for my M.E. Super). It does seem to yield quite sharp images though.
Please don't be to harsh.
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02-20-2013, 05:22 PM   #288
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QuoteOriginally posted by DayleT Quote
got it for Christmas 30 yrs ago
Nice result from a lens that old.
02-21-2013, 12:23 PM   #289
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Is there any astro photo fun here for me?

Hi all, I have a K5, and this Orion 120 Scope on a Skyview pro mount. The scope is not a APO, and there is no goto, but it does have a motor drive.so was wondering if there was any astrophoto fun to be had here? Was thinking about not using the scope at all and just mounting the K5 to a dovetail. Any suggestions?


Last edited by Tony3d; 09-03-2015 at 06:18 PM.
02-21-2013, 02:38 PM   #290
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tony3d Quote
Hi all, I have a K5, and this Orion 120 Scope on a Skyview pro mount. The scope is not a APO, and there is no goto, but it does have a motor drive.so was wondering if there was any astrophoto fun to be had here? Was thinking about not using the scope at all and just mounting the K5 to a dovetail. Any suggestions?
I'm gonna vote yes. Not sure your experience level so I don't want to insult but just be very patient, take your time setting up, and I think you have the right idea going with just the camera and a lens to make sure the settings work well. Polar alignment is a huge key factor. Best of luck and post your results.
02-21-2013, 04:53 PM   #291
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I see a very good setup there. I don't see any reason not to try astrophoto with the refractor and/or with the body+lense on the dovetail (for wide field).
The refractor has a long focal length so tracking, polar allignment is esential for long time exposures. I try first with lower focal lengts to get use with astrophoto, stacking, image processing.
02-21-2013, 05:52 PM   #292
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I always polar align anyway. I have a polar scope built into the mount. I did have a moonlight focuser put on the scope as well. It's very solid, and well built. I just wonder if it will all be worth it. I really don't have any top quality lens for my K5 yet. Just the 18-135mm, 55-300mm, and a super takumar f1.4 50mm. The scope is not of the APO variety either. I will also need help on just how to go about doing this. I do understand frame stacking, but being on a Mac, I don't know if there's any software for this. I also live in a suburb of Orlando. My sky shots will most likely look pretty bright. I'd love some input on all this.

Last edited by Tony3d; 02-21-2013 at 06:46 PM.
02-21-2013, 07:33 PM   #293
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tony3d Quote
I always polar align anyway. I have a polar scope built into the mount. I did have a moonlight focuser put on the scope as well. It's very solid, and well built. I just wonder if it will all be worth it. I really don't have any top quality lens for my K5 yet. Just the 18-135mm, 55-300mm, and a super takumar f1.4 50mm. The scope is not of the APO variety either. I will also need help on just how to go about doing this. I do understand frame stacking, but being on a Mac, I don't know if there's any software for this. I also live in a suburb of Orlando. My sky shots will most likely look pretty bright. I'd love some input on all this.
Here is a link on Mac stacking Software. Both free and paid

best astrophotography software: Mac Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

02-22-2013, 07:53 AM   #294
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dr_who Quote
Here is a link on Mac stacking Software. Both free and paid

best astrophotography software: Mac Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review
Thanks.
02-23-2013, 03:39 PM   #295
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You can probably do some solar system photography with that scope but thats about it. That long of focal length and with that mount you just won't be able to do any decent length of exposure without major star trails. If you want to do some wide angle stuff with just a lens that shouldn't be a problem with that mount. I recommend the Nikon 180mm 2.8 AI as a fast wide field lens. I don't own one myself but the images I've seen taken with it have been fantastic. Best AP lens for the money hands down.
02-23-2013, 05:36 PM   #296
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I know next to nothing about astro imaging, so with that out of the way, my advice would be not to use that extension on the tripod. Might help in reducing the vibrations some.

Cheers.
02-28-2013, 11:33 AM   #297
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I have a K-30 and am looking to start into astrophotography, as I have access to quite a few scopes at the Cincinnati Astronomical Society. Will the K-30 be of similar performance to the K-5, or should I look to selling the K-30 and getting a K-5?

Sorry for the "noob" question. I've searched these forums and Google for information on the K-30 as it relates to astrophotography and found almost no worthwhile comparison to the K-5. The only thing I've read that is somewhat making me think the K-5 might be a worthwhile switch is that the K-5 has the option for lower ISO than the K-30, and therefore lower noise when doing long exposures.

Thank you.
02-28-2013, 03:42 PM - 1 Like   #298
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QuoteOriginally posted by dqniel Quote
I have a K-30 and am looking to start into astrophotography, as I have access to quite a few scopes at the Cincinnati Astronomical Society. Will the K-30 be of similar performance to the K-5, or should I look to selling the K-30 and getting a K-5?

Sorry for the "noob" question. I've searched these forums and Google for information on the K-30 as it relates to astrophotography and found almost no worthwhile comparison to the K-5. The only thing I've read that is somewhat making me think the K-5 might be a worthwhile switch is that the K-5 has the option for lower ISO than the K-30, and therefore lower noise when doing long exposures.

Thank you.
I suppose it's personal preference, but if you plan on going into the stacking route of many images, you probably won't be shooting low ISO anyhow, but ISO 200-800, or even ISO 1600. I personally shoot at ISO 400. The very nature of stacking helps reduce noise on it's own plus with the use of software or dark frames shooting at ISO 80 is not really a issue. As long as the K30 can turn off dark frame subtraction which I think it can, you should be ready to move forward on your first images.
03-11-2013, 11:20 PM   #299
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Finally made some new photos!!! These were both taken on somewhat windy nights so I can't wait until I have steady air and seeing to try again. This is my first attempt at each one. Oh yeah, and I also picked up a brand new K-5IIs here in Japan on sale for $800! So far it's great!

Pentax K-5IIs, Orion ED80CFT, tracked with AstroTrac, (8) 60 second and (2) 120 second subs @800ISO and one 3minute exposure at 1600ISO (no darks, flats, bias), stacked with DSS, processed with CS5.


K-5IIs, EDOrion80CF, five 1min subs 800ISO (no darks, flats, bias), stacked with DSS, processed with CS5, tracked with AstroTrac.
03-11-2013, 11:39 PM   #300
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Very cool gwar. I recently imaged m51 with a similar scope and camera to yours. It was windy as well so I had to throw out some shots. I will stack and post soon. Not to be picky but your stars on the outer on the image look elongated. I'm curious if I have the same .
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