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02-18-2012, 02:35 PM   #196
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gimbal Quote
Have you tried using iso 80 instead of those high iso numbers? You will still find the dust clouds in the shadows and the blown out areas will be much smaller. The iso 80 shots are not fun to look at unprocessed though as they will be very dark.
Thanks Gimbal, and yes I like lower ISO too, but you need a fairly accurately aligned Equatorial Mount then, don't you?

I don't have a permanently installed equatorial mount and have to drag my mount to and from the balcony each time. Quite often I just don't have the energy (or the time) to do very accurate polar alignment.

Also improtant: In the terrible (seeing-wise) winter nights under a heavily light polluted city sky that I have right now, long exposures aren't really an option.

And actually: High ISO isn't what it used to be. When I compare ISO 3200 and 1600 on my *ist DL with what I get from my K-5, I must say that whatever Pentax has done (including some hidden in-camera proccesing, I guess) the newer sensors are far more useable for astrophotography. I know I don't produce master pieces this way - but I do have great fun.

02-19-2012, 06:18 AM   #197
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stone G. Quote
Thanks Gimbal, and yes I like lower ISO too, but you need a fairly accurately aligned Equatorial Mount then, don't you?
No that is not what I meant. If you can do (for example) 10 seconds and iso 6400, I suggest you use 10 seconds and iso 80. The picture will be severely underexposed but you can fix that after stacking. The result will be less overexposed areas and the finer details in the clouds are there as well. One doesn't really gain any new info by raising the iso anymore, the amplification done by raising the iso is (as I understand it) purely digital anyway with these new sensors. So you might as well do it on the computer afterwards and thus avoid blowing the highlights.
02-19-2012, 11:52 AM   #198
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gimbal Quote
No that is not what I meant. If you can do (for example) 10 seconds and iso 6400, I suggest you use 10 seconds and iso 80. The picture will be severely underexposed but you can fix that after stacking. The result will be less overexposed areas and the finer details in the clouds are there as well. One doesn't really gain any new info by raising the iso anymore, the amplification done by raising the iso is (as I understand it) purely digital anyway with these new sensors. So you might as well do it on the computer afterwards and thus avoid blowing the highlights.
Ah hah!

Thanks gimabal, I must try that (again). I have tried before, but was not successful - presumably due to lack of skills in post-processing......

But I shall definitely take your word for it and try again!
02-22-2012, 06:55 AM   #199
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Yes indeed, sensor used in K-5 is the closest thing to ISO-less sensor. You should read the The "ISOless" sensor thread (https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5-forum/135603-isoless-sensor.html).

As far as I know the analog amplification goes up to 1600 ISO, while anything higher is in-camera digital amplification. So, there should be some advantage in raising the ISO to 1600, but not higher. There are also some indications that analog gain goes just up to 800 ISO (D7000 sensor trivia: Nikon D90 - D40 / D7000 - D3000 Forum: Digital Photography Review).

02-22-2012, 05:07 PM   #200
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Moon with k100d, mosaic from 9 @4400mm.
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02-22-2012, 07:10 PM   #201
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1.
I would like to give a try to photograph Venus and Jupiter appearing shortly after sunset in the western sky.
They really strike out against the not-so-black sky at that time of day.
This would be my very first try.

But, they are quite a distance apart from one another and of course, I would have to take a shot for each planet separately.

Anyway, I was planning of using my DA*300/4, mounted on a tripod (for sure) and nothing else.
Is this doable? Probably not because I don't have a telescope!

2. I see loads of excellent pictures here showing tons of stars with beautiful colours mingling in the shot ... I have browsed a few threads but I am not quite sure how to start.
Some of these were not taken with telephoto lenses but showed the Milky Way !! Far but beautifully taken.

I also have an asortment of different lenses which could be used, from 15mm up to 300mm and pretty much a load of lenses in between.
Finally, I also have a 1.7X TC, ... whether that would be helpful or not, I don't know.

What would the best settings be with the K5 ? i.e.: aperture, shutter speed, ISO, ... several shots to be stacked or not, DFS off? ... etc.

I thought I'd ask here since many people show great astrophotography shots.

Thanks for any suggestion(s)/pointers/links.

JP

Last edited by jpzk; 02-22-2012 at 07:16 PM.
02-22-2012, 07:39 PM   #202
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
1.
I would like to give a try to photograph Venus and Jupiter appearing shortly after sunset in the western sky.
They really strike out against the not-so-black sky at that time of day.
This would be my very first try.

But, they are quite a distance apart from one another and of course, I would have to take a shot for each planet separately.

Anyway, I was planning of using my DA*300/4, mounted on a tripod (for sure) and nothing else.
Is this doable? Probably not because I don't have a telescope!

2. I see loads of excellent pictures here showing tons of stars with beautiful colours mingling in the shot ... I have browsed a few threads but I am not quite sure how to start.
Some of these were not taken with telephoto lenses but showed the Milky Way !! Far but beautifully taken.

I also have an asortment of different lenses which could be used, from 15mm up to 300mm and pretty much a load of lenses in between.
Finally, I also have a 1.7X TC, ... whether that would be helpful or not, I don't know.

What would the best settings be with the K5 ? i.e.: aperture, shutter speed, ISO, ... several shots to be stacked or not, DFS off? ... etc.

I thought I'd ask here since many people show great astrophotography shots.

Thanks for any suggestion(s)/pointers/links.

JP
Plenty of info here http://astropix.com/ and here http://www.astronomyboy.com/barndoor/links.html and here http://www.danheller.com/star-trails.html
02-22-2012, 08:29 PM   #203
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QuoteOriginally posted by pixelsaurus Quote
Thanks!

Links appreciated !

JP

Edit: The first link is to buy an e-book on CD; the next link isn't too verbose and detailed about setting up and the last one does give some explanations.

I'll be browsing the WEB for more .
Thanks again.


Last edited by jpzk; 02-22-2012 at 08:36 PM.
02-23-2012, 01:34 AM   #204
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
1.
I would like to give a try to photograph Venus and Jupiter appearing shortly after sunset in the western sky.
They really strike out against the not-so-black sky at that time of day.
This would be my very first try.

-------

What would the best settings be with the K5 ? i.e.: aperture, shutter speed, ISO, ... several shots to be stacked or not, DFS off? ... etc.

I thought I'd ask here since many people show great astrophotography shots.

Thanks for any suggestion(s)/pointers/links.

JP
For what it is worth: I have compiled my own experiences gained over the years in this little guideline:

Camera Settings for Astrophotography

At least, it does show some possible ways of tackling your questions on aperture, shutter speeds, ISO, focal lengths etc.
02-23-2012, 03:10 AM   #205
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Thanks!

Links appreciated !

JP

Edit: The first link is to buy an e-book on CD; the next link isn't too verbose and detailed about setting up and the last one does give some explanations.
You are welcome. The first link is more than just a pitch for an e-book. It covers equipment,techniques and processing, amongst other things.
02-24-2012, 12:42 PM   #206
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QuoteOriginally posted by Stone G. Quote
For what it is worth: I have compiled my own experiences gained over the years in this little guideline:

Camera Settings for Astrophotography

At least, it does show some possible ways of tackling your questions on aperture, shutter speeds, ISO, focal lengths etc.
That is great !

I could at least follow some of the basic rules: lens type(s), f-stop, exposure time and ISO settings.

I will just have to go out there and try a few different things.

Thanks!

JP
02-24-2012, 12:43 PM   #207
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QuoteOriginally posted by pixelsaurus Quote
You are welcome. The first link is more than just a pitch for an e-book. It covers equipment,techniques and processing, amongst other things.
Indeed.

I must have lokked it over too quickly.

JP
02-24-2012, 03:29 PM   #208
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Great book!

QuoteOriginally posted by Stone G. Quote
For what it is worth: I have compiled my own experiences gained over the years in this little guideline:

Camera Settings for Astrophotography

At least, it does show some possible ways of tackling your questions on aperture, shutter speeds, ISO, focal lengths etc.
A great contribution to understanding astro- and other high resolution photography!

Thank you Sir!
02-25-2012, 05:05 AM   #209
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QuoteOriginally posted by newarts Quote
A great contribution to understanding astro- and other high resolution photography!

Thank you Sir!
Well thank you too Newarts. I am almost embarassed with such great words - but I am truly glad that you find my little writings useful and understandable!
03-02-2012, 11:58 PM   #210
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Hey guys!
I just picked up a copy of PS 5x and have been re-stacking my subs from earlier in the season. I have finally worked out the bugs in DSS ( was using auto WB instead of Camera WB). Here is my best shot yet! It is a composite of 5, 30, 60, and 90s subs combined with layer masks and tweaked with curves, levels, and saturation in PS. What do you think?
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