I tried imaging some stars, and I thought it would be relatively straight-forward. People online basically tell you to use a magnifying glass to look at your phone screen, zoom in, make sure they are pinpoints, and BAM! You’re good to go.
I’ve always loved looking at Antares, and the way it twinkles red, gold, and blue at times. It was putting on a show on Saturday the 8th, and my wife loved it. I tried imaging it later at ISO 2304 (why?) and duration of 10s (a setting a friend online has had a lot of success with). Anyway, it did NOT turn out like my wife was used to seeing it:
I tried to grab Polaris too with a 10s duration, but for some idiotic reason, I forgot to put the ISO back down to normal and instead, it went at 9000+:
I didn’t have much luck with Jupiter, but Saturn looked almost easier. It wasn’t. I tried starting with ISO 24, not too sensitive, with a 1s duration (not sure why I didn’t go for faster speed). And I got something, which loses a lot when you crop it:
Because it was dark, I jacked the ISO up to 1280, and went for 8s…again, I got something:
Another site had talked about maxing out the ISO, which seemed crazy, but I went to 9000+ and a 1s duration, with understandable washout:
I don’t know what I was thinking, other than I was having trouble with settings, but I went up to 2.5s, with at least the stars showing well:
And just for fun, I closed out with 25s, which is about 15s too long for my alt-az mount to track anything without blur or star trails:
Since I was having success imaging the moon, I was cocky enough to try for some planet shots. Jupiter was up and looking super bright (not the least of the reasons being it’s nice and close right now), so I went for it. The 25mm Plossl was my best bet previously, so I went back to it for my go-to lens for the attempt. Of course, it’s not going to get me very close shots, it’s pretty low power, but what the heck.
I started methodically…At ISO 24, I experimented with various short-duration bursts…1/800th of a second:
Then 1/320th of a second:
1/250th of a second:
1/200th of a second:
1/125th of a second:
1/80th of a second:
I had a lot of trouble seeing what the planet and moons were looking like in the viewer, so almost impossible to tell if I was getting a good image (i.e., in focus) or not. » Read the rest
Continuing for my fourth outing of the calendar year (i.e. 2019 + 004), my fourth batch of photos were still of the moon, this time swapping out my Delos for the 15mm Plossl. I had NO trouble at all marrying the plossls compared to the larger glass and it makes me think I might end up picking up a few plossls if I see them on sale or used, just for imaging.
With the upper camera on my iPhone, settings were f/1.8, ISO 24, auto white balance, and initial duration of 1/250s. And I started out strong right out of the gate. Mare Crisium is still prominent to the right of centre, and the Sea of Serenity above to the left, with a nice ridge in the dark in between. It might be called Rimae Littrow, but that seems more like the name of a general crater.
A shot near the bottom of the moon, with a very prominent Theophilus at the 12:00 position, next to the Mare Nectaris:
And a zoomed-in version of Theophilus (a prominent impact crater between Sinus Asperitatis and Mare Nectaris, partially intruding into crater Cyrillus … Theo is 4200m deep, with central mountain 1400m high):
Mare Crisium again, just for continuity:
And a dark section focusing on the ridges (duration altered to 1/640th of a second) with the crater at the bottom being Plinius, and the ridges above named, wait for it, Rimae Plinius:
I confess I was a bit excited to use my Delos for this batch. It is my favourite lens by far, perfect power for my scope. And yet attaching it to my iPhone with the adapter was a giant pain in the patootie. It has a larger FoV and display glass, should have been easy to set up, but I struggled more than with the plossls. I thought it was perhaps the power, but you’ll see later that it wasn’t. It just didn’t line up great.
I was still set on the f/1.8 lens on the camera, and it’s lowest ISO is 24, so I was still working with that….add in AWB, and 1/125th of a second exposures.
At first, I had an itty bitty FoV which allowed me to capture Mare Crisium again:
This next one was so small, it was hard to be sure it was still the same sea:
I was still struggling, and this one I don’t even KNOW where it is targeting:
Then, I repositioned the camera on the lens, and voila, I got this:
Super washed out, which is likely the 1/125s duration combined with the extra power. » Read the rest