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Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-30-2021, 10:01 AM  
Pointing my 50mm prime toward the night sky - astro photographers see anything?
Posted By damianc
Replies: 17
Views: 763
Stellarium is a great piece of software for exploring the night sky from your location and planning imaging sessions
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-30-2021, 04:46 AM  
Pointing my 50mm prime toward the night sky - astro photographers see anything?
Posted By damianc
Replies: 17
Views: 763
Is the K-S2 iso invariant? You're right about no more light though, I should have probably phrased that better. Standard rule of thumb seems to be to get the histogram peak at about 25%-33%
One advantage of higher iso is that bad frames can be more easily spotted and eliminated from a stack
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-30-2021, 02:07 AM  
Pointing my 50mm prime toward the night sky - astro photographers see anything?
Posted By damianc
Replies: 17
Views: 763
A quick curves tweak of photo 2 shows the image is sharp across the field and there's little coma and CA. Some star trailing at 10 seconds which can be corrected with astrotracer or a telescope mount.
The image is under exposed, and using higher ISO (e.g 800) would allow you to capture more light and see more stars. Of course, this introduces more noise and the solution to that is stacking multiple images in software like Siril, or Deep Sky Stacker. I'd say F4 is good for this lens BTW

If you do follow up you do realise you're off down a very deep rabbit hole! :D
Forum: Welcomes and Introductions 09-15-2021, 09:04 AM  
Hello from (not so) sunny Scotland!
Posted By damianc
Replies: 13
Views: 375
Welcome to the forum.
It's been wall to wall the last 2 days in Easter Ross
Forum: Welcomes and Introductions 08-23-2021, 07:52 AM  
Astrophotographer from Tokyo
Posted By damianc
Replies: 12
Views: 409
Welcome from the Scottish Highlands Cuiv

I've been following your YouTube channel for a while now and always look forward to new content. I'm fascinated with what you can do with the K1
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 08-20-2021, 06:27 AM  
lenses to stay clear of
Posted By damianc
Replies: 80
Views: 5,693
This wasn't a dig at your original post, I think it's a fascinating question. My own opinion is that there are some great manual lenses from decades ago as many here will attest. Lack of autofocus is of no hindrance to those of us who take landscapes for instance, and the way a vintage lens renders can be a thing of great beauty. Add to that the pleasure of using some of these lenses can be a pleasure in itself
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 08-20-2021, 01:23 AM  
lenses to stay clear of
Posted By damianc
Replies: 80
Views: 5,693
Adding fuel to the flames ?
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-10-2021, 12:26 AM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
It may well be? I've upgraded my OS, and when the nights start drawing in a bit I'll take a look. I've reasoned that the M2 ssd in my NUC is way faster than my flakey WiFi, so rsync is the obvious route. Next job when I get more time is sorting out backlash on my mount and concentrating on getting autoguiding improvements.



ISTR select 'local storage ' and just set the path. I did try doing this over NFS, but it's just inherently less robust than rsync
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-09-2021, 11:19 PM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
Yeah, the NUC is a celeron, the desktop an overclocked modern i7. I don't really need FITS files until post processing and that can all be done in Siril. I just never figured a way to force Indi/Ekos to write just RAW.

I did consider a Raspberry Pi, but compared to the NUC I already had it was a bit under powered. Not being a hardware sort of person I also figured I would do whatever needed in software


I've not come across the Rainbow Astro before - probably as it was out of my budget, but it seems to have sparked a lot of discussion on Cloudy Nights, and looks really portable. As for the Takahashi - you probably can't go wrong there.

I did have a play with my Tamron 70-200 and astrotracer and was quite impressed with the results. That's what spurred me on to get the Askar
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-09-2021, 12:48 AM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
Brilliant! now the real fun begins :D
I run Indiweb on my NUC to control starting/stopping devices which can be launched from Ekos I think.

One Issue I cam across which caused me hassle (I may not properly understand the ekos/indi interface properly) is where to store images. If I allow images to copy across from the indi server to my desktop then it performs a very time consuming conversion from RAW to FITS meaning there's a long lag between shots which means there's less imaging time. My solution was to store images locally on the remote indiserver and use rsync to keep my desktop in sync
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-07-2021, 10:50 PM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
There is a third party indi driver supporting the K1 indi-3rdparty/README.md at master karlrees/indi-3rdparty GitHub
I can't remember whether I did my own build of indilib and/or pulled one from the openSUSE community, but it definitely works

There's some discussion started by the developer on the INDI forum New Pentax Driver Testing - INDI Forum
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-05-2021, 11:52 PM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
Cloudy Nights forums are a great source of technical info across a wide range of gear, technique and more. Likely as not you'll find a majority of your questions already answered there with some expertise!
There's a 3rd party driver for Pentax cameras with Indilib that definitely supports the K1/K1-ii using AFAIK the Ricoh SDK. I can't remember whether I had to do my own build of indilib to get it all working. I live in the Scottish Highlands and we still don't have enough darkness yet for me to get the scope and NUC back out.
Quite a few people use a Raspberry Pi as a remote Indi server. The latest generation devices are quite powerful and cost effective. There's a fair degree of complexity getting everything to talk together properly: camera, guidescope, mount, KStars etc, that any means to simplify setup is worth it, at least to start with
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 08-05-2021, 12:43 AM  
Deep Sky Astrophotography using the K1 mkII
Posted By damianc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,993
Indilib allows you to control shutter via USB thus obviating the need for a cable release/intervalometer. For my setup I have a rugged Intel NUC running Indiserver attached to the telescope, mount and guidescope and connect remotely from my desktop indoors where it's warm (important in winter!).
I guess you already read recommendations to prioritise the mount. I can't say I have a vast range of experience, but it looks like the soundest of advice.
The K1 being full frame gives telescopes a wider field of view than APSc, and I'm finding my Askar FRA400 to be quite a useful focal length
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 07-21-2021, 02:00 AM  
Is Pentax thinking about a new k1?
Posted By damianc
Replies: 86
Views: 3,887
I miss the KR10 focusing screen. That 45 degrees split was so usable
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 05-17-2021, 10:55 PM  
Polish K1 Arca Swiss plate...
Posted By damianc
Replies: 22
Views: 1,311
It's a bit fiddly getting the cover open given how thick the rubber door is, but all ports are accessible
Forum: Post Your Photos! 05-15-2021, 12:39 AM  
Landscape A beautiful sunset at Neist Point, Isle of Skye
Posted By damianc
Replies: 12
Views: 791
That's really rather nice. Time to plan a day trip now we're free to travel in the Highlands
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 05-12-2021, 10:35 PM  
Polish K1 Arca Swiss plate...
Posted By damianc
Replies: 22
Views: 1,311
For anyone in Europe considering buying this,it's a nicely made item and an an excellent fit to my K1-ii
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 05-12-2021, 05:46 AM  
Manually Focusing on Stars with Standard K-3 18-135mm lens
Posted By damianc
Replies: 18
Views: 997
I can only speak for their use on a 400mm astrograph where they are brilliant. I'd note the caveats at the foot of this screencap. I can't imagine they'd work at the wide end of an 18-135, but may at the long end
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 05-04-2021, 10:42 PM  
Manually Focusing on Stars with Standard K-3 18-135mm lens
Posted By damianc
Replies: 18
Views: 997
I'll second that, it makes things soooo much easier
Forum: General Photography 04-21-2021, 11:40 PM  
Northern lights
Posted By damianc
Replies: 21
Views: 833
Just an opinion. I feel the best aurora photography is simply good landscape photography so the 17-50 will be plenty wide for most circumstances. An ultra wide might be helpful for capturing stars above the lights depending on how far north you go
Forum: General Talk 04-14-2021, 08:24 AM  
Prince Philip Has Died
Posted By damianc
Replies: 28
Views: 1,195
Yep, I agree wholeheartedly with the above as it is a matter of fact. Monarchy is by definition political as it is a form of rule. I'll not add anything which might be inflammatory
Forum: Pentax K-1 & K-1 II 04-11-2021, 11:15 PM  
My K-1 ii LCD is "grainy" in very low light situations like astrophotography.
Posted By damianc
Replies: 13
Views: 1,038
Switch focus peaking off. Did it with mine, now it's much easier finding stars
Forum: Pentax KP 03-08-2021, 01:38 AM  
Misadventures in Pixel Shift: KP Edition
Posted By damianc
Replies: 8
Views: 823
Rawtherapee can separate out the exposures. It uses its own algorithms for motion correction too, so may be worth a try
Forum: Pentax KP 03-07-2021, 12:19 AM  
Nothing appears on the monitor when I turn on the camera
Posted By damianc
Replies: 8
Views: 561
My K1-ii exhibited similar behaviour after I'd been out shooting along the local dunes. Very fine sand had made its way into the shutter button and was holding it partially pressed at times. A rocket blower and some tapping cleared it. Maybe you have the same sort of problem?
Forum: Post Your Photos! 02-24-2021, 02:54 AM  
Landscape Pap Of Glencoe
Posted By damianc
Replies: 6
Views: 322
That flush of colour in the trees is hinting at the return of spring.
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