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05-07-2015, 04:44 PM   #826
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QuoteOriginally posted by XLXW Quote
Very nice photograph. What is the bright star in the center? Is it a planet? Jupiter or Saturn? There are an interesting alignment of small dots around it which can be seen when the photograph is enlarged. I counted 4 on the right side and initially thought that it might be Jupiter but then I saw a few others and thought possibly Saturn.
I believe the center star is Vega based on what I am seeing in Stellarium.

On the right side the lower one is Antares and the the one above and slightly to right is Saturn.

QuoteOriginally posted by XLXW Quote
I tried astrophotography this past weekend in the desert at Joshua Tree here in California with the C8 and my Pentax DSLR. I forgot the remote control so I had no success whatsoever. I did manage to image Jupiter and her 4 Moons but I shot the image through the eyepiece with the camera hand held. The camera was set to the "green mode" in the automatic format. The sensors misread the exposure and totally over-exposed the shot -- but I did get the planet and the 4 moons although they were washed out in white and a bit blurred. I counted it as a success because it is more than I ever got before trying it with film years ago. I'm going to give it a go in a couple of weeks. The "seeing" was terrible due to a low pressure system replacing the high pressure system and a very bright full Moon.
I haven't tried jupiter and the moons. But one thing with this is that you just keep trying. I made mistakes in that Panorama. You might not know them but I do. So the next time I will learn from those mistakes and my image should be even better.

If you do not have the remote control you can still set the button to timed delay so it might help as well.

05-07-2015, 05:42 PM   #827
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QuoteOriginally posted by SirTomster Quote
I believe the center star is Vega based on what I am seeing in Stellarium.

On the right side the lower one is Antares and the the one above and slightly to right is Saturn.



I haven't tried jupiter and the moons. But one thing with this is that you just keep trying. I made mistakes in that Panorama. You might not know them but I do. So the next time I will learn from those mistakes and my image should be even better.

If you do not have the remote control you can still set the button to timed delay so it might help as well.
The camera is new to me and I'm still learning how to use it. The manual is poorly written and it is pretty confusing for someone like myself who is a novice photographer. I'm certain that the manual was written in Japanese than translated to English which makes it all the more difficult to understand precisely that which it is at times referring to. I'll keep at it though. I'm planning on having another go at it in a week or so when there is a new Moon. I would like to try to image the Virgo galaxy cluster. I think that I'll try M81 and M82 first. The telescope's mount is computerized and will track. I have to find the camera piggyback device to utilize it and then figure out how to set the timer on the camera or else buy a Pentax cable switch for the digital camera.
05-07-2015, 07:56 PM   #828
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QuoteOriginally posted by XLXW Quote
The camera is new to me and I'm still learning how to use it. The manual is poorly written and it is pretty confusing for someone like myself who is a novice photographer. I'm certain that the manual was written in Japanese than translated to English which makes it all the more difficult to understand precisely that which it is at times referring to. I'll keep at it though. I'm planning on having another go at it in a week or so when there is a new Moon. I would like to try to image the Virgo galaxy cluster. I think that I'll try M81 and M82 first. The telescope's mount is computerized and will track. I have to find the camera piggyback device to utilize it and then figure out how to set the timer on the camera or else buy a Pentax cable switch for the digital camera.
I use this for my remote trigger: Whopping $6.99

http://www.amazon.com/Wireless-Control-MagicFiber-Microfiber-Cleaning/dp/B00...=pentax+remote

If you have a telescope and a motorized mount then I expect you will get some great shots. There are a lot of people here with telescopes that can offer some great advice.
05-07-2015, 08:57 PM   #829
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QuoteOriginally posted by XLXW Quote
The camera is new to me and I'm still learning how to use it. The manual is poorly written and it is pretty confusing for someone like myself who is a novice photographer. I'm certain that the manual was written in Japanese than translated to English which makes it all the more difficult to understand precisely that which it is at times referring to. I'll keep at it though. .
You might want to take a look at this series of e-books for Pentax DSLRs. The Pentax manuals describe each of the controls, but really does not tell you how and why they might be used. You can download the e-book immediately. Some of them have sample chapters available to read.


05-07-2015, 09:21 PM   #830
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QuoteOriginally posted by SirTomster Quote
I use this for my remote trigger: Whopping $6.99

Amazon.com : IR Wireless Remote Control for PENTAX Q, PENTAX DSLR (645D, K-5 II, K-5 II s, K-50, K-30, K-500, X-5, K-m, K-r, K-x, K-01, K-5, K-7, K10D, K20D, K100D, K110D, K200D, K2000) *ist (D, DL, DL2, DS, DS2) + Premium MagicFiber Microfiber Lens

If you have a telescope and a motorized mount then I expect you will get some great shots. There are a lot of people here with telescopes that can offer some great advice.
Thanks. I do have a Pentax remote -- I just left it in the other camera bag when I went out to the desert. The one that you referenced appears to have a wireless application which is interesting.

---------- Post added 05-07-15 at 09:23 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
You might want to take a look at this series of e-books for Pentax DSLRs. The Pentax manuals describe each of the controls, but really does not tell you how and why they might be used. You can download the e-book immediately. Some of them have sample chapters available to read.
Thanks, I think that I will order a book on the camera tomorrow or the next day. I've read that manual a couple of times now and it is not very helpful to me.
05-07-2015, 09:31 PM   #831
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QuoteOriginally posted by Skymist Quote
There has been no astrophotography thread for K-5 yet, so with your permission I'll start one. In forums without a specific forum for this kind of subject, I've seen a thread like this remain active for years. Let's see your K-5 sky photos, all kinds, including stars, planets, deep sky telescope objects, spacecraft, satellites, and atmospheric phenomena. Also advice, data, and ideas.

To start with, I want to post the data I took for the camera's built-in interval timer. It's a cool feature that the K-5 has the interval timer in the camera, so you can do without attaching an external one. In the menu, you can set the interval timer with a shutter interval, a total number of activations, and a time to begin the activations. The firmware acts like a finger pushing the shutter - that is, the interval you choose is the time between shutter activations, not the time from when the shutter last closed. That means, if the camera needs 1 second to process each shot, and you have the shutter open for 30s, you must set the interval to 31 seconds or more. That's because the camera must be ready for the next shot when the timer fires, or that shot will be skipped.

The issue is complicated by the Dark Frame Subtraction feature, DFS, which in the menu is called "Slow Shutter Speed NR". If DFS is on, after each shot the camera takes a reference frame with the shutter closed which is then processed with the image to remove hot pixels and other problems, at the cost of almost doubling the time per shot.

Using my K-5, I determined the minimum interval time for each of the long shutter times. Enter this value, or higher, into the interval time menu. Using too short a time will cause shutter activations to be skipped; using too long a time will unnecessarily waste time, and we don't want to do that if we are taking sky pictures. As you would expect, the values for DFS on are much higher than those with DFS off. You decide which you want to use.

Values in Bold are more efficient in time used, and have proportionally less dead time, than their neighbors. Use them if you can. For instance, 20s is a good choice for an exposure time - set the interval to 21s if you have DFS off, or 35s if you have DFS on.

Exp NoDFS DFSon
0.25 1. 1
0.30 1. 1
0.40 1. 1
0.50 1. 2
0.60 1. 2
0.80 2. 2
1.00 2. 3
1.30 2. 3
1.60 2. 4
2.00 3. 4
2.50 3. 5
3.00 4. 6
4.00 5. 9
5.00 6. 10
6.00 7. 12
8.00 9. 14
10.0 11 18
13.0 14 21
15.0 16 27
20.0 21 35
25.0 26 42
30.0 32 54


Some interval times are convenient divisors of an hour.
An interval of 6s gives 600 shots per hour.
An interval of 10s gives 360 shots per hour.
An interval of 12s gives 300 shots per hour.
An interval of 18s gives 200 shots per hour.
An interval of 36s gives 100 shots per hour.
Sorry to quote the OP from 4 years ago, but is this saying that the K5 stacks automatically??? As someone who has done astrophotography with a 13" Celestron, this would be HUGE.
05-07-2015, 09:47 PM   #832
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QuoteOriginally posted by DerekPDX Quote
Sorry to quote the OP from 4 years ago, but is this saying that the K5 stacks automatically??? As someone who has done astrophotography with a 13" Celestron, this would be HUGE.
This is exactly why I need to buy the book that was recommended to me. Note to self: buy that book tomorrow.
05-08-2015, 08:07 AM   #833
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QuoteOriginally posted by XLXW Quote
This is exactly why I need to buy the book that was recommended to me. Note to self: buy that book tomorrow.
Also check your local school district and/or college/university. Many have Community Education classes that are fairly cheap. Under $75 here locally. Or also check your local camera shops they could have some classes. I did a class through my local university and also my school district and then took a few trips through the University to a National Park where I had a blast.

Also, check into Find your people - Meetup It is a site to set meetings for any interest. There are clubs for photography, hiking, eating at new restaurants, work related stuff. Just a ton of different groups but there could be a few Photo ones in your area that will have different events. I have groups that go do things to groups that discuss different items. All informative.

05-11-2015, 12:30 PM   #834
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Quick M64 the Blackeye Galaxy from Friday night. Sky only clear up for 30 mins and I got off four 400" exposures at ISO400.

Celestron C8 @f6.3. NEQ6 mount. Baader Neo Moon & Sky Filter. Full Spectrum mod Pentax K5.

Dont think it is all too terrible for so few exposures.

Link:
05-11-2015, 12:38 PM   #835
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Does your use of the term: 400" -- mean 400 seconds of exposure time?
05-11-2015, 12:42 PM   #836
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Correct. I took four 400 second exposures and stacked them using median rejection in deep sky stacker.
05-11-2015, 12:46 PM   #837
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Thanks for the information. I'm trying to learn. Nice photograph of M64.
05-11-2015, 01:05 PM   #838
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No problem. Ask away. I'm sure everyone in this forum will be able to provide you a wealth of information!
05-11-2015, 01:29 PM   #839
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QuoteOriginally posted by seti_v2 Quote
No problem. Ask away. I'm sure everyone in this forum will be able to provide you a wealth of information!
I'm going to go out to the desert this weekend and have another go at it with my C8. We will see how it comes out. This time, I'll remember to take the Pentax remote control device and perhaps attach the 6.3 reducer like you did. I would like to try to photograph Jupiter; Saturn; M13 and possibly M81 and M82 -- or other brighter galaxies.
05-20-2015, 02:12 PM - 2 Likes   #840
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