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  1. #11
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Quote Originally Posted by BF Hammer View Post
    Moab Man, the AZ-GTi hit a spot for me with price, payload, and versatility. I spent a good deal of 2019 researching and set a goal to buy in December. I liked the Omegon LX-3 idea, but not enough payload for my Sigma 150-600mm C lens. I was debating the Sky Adventurer and some of the similar electric motor mounts. They had just barely enough payload. But it was watching an amateur shoot video from the AZ-GTi on Youtube that got me to look at it. I kept researching it and it moved to the top of the list since it was only $60 more.
    Your path to purchase is about the same as mine. I'm happy with my purchase, but I do need to get a heavier/beefier tripod.

    Any regrets or challenges you ran into with your unit?


    › See More: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/



  2. #12
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    I had a failure of my redneck engineering on my 2nd night of photographing NEOWISE. The Star Adventurer ball-head adapter on my rig is actually screwed into a quick-release Arca-Swiss compatible clamp. If Alt-Az mode, this setup is not such an issue, but in EQ mode and aimed low on the horizon to the northwest, the front-heavy lens makes the whole thing try to unscrew loose. And it did when I added a 150mm square light-pollution filter. I could not make it right in the dark at that location. I went to plan B which was shooting wide-field landscape on a tripod. I was going to do that anyways that night. I since modified the setup some more and this will not happen again. Unless it is critical that I take a photo in that position again.
    Thanks/Like Moab Man Thanks/liked this post
     

  3. #13
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers
    1 hour 8 minute photo of Andromeda shot under the city lights.

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers-andromeda.jpg
    Thanks/Like TwistedThrottle, Hobbit, cbg Thanks/liked this post
     
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  4. #14
    Senior Member
    Bikerbrent's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Quote Originally Posted by Moab Man View Post
    1 hour 8 minute photo of Andromeda shot under the city lights.

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers-andromeda.jpg
    Great photo, especially under the city lights condition. I also like the small galaxy you captured above Andromeda half way to the top of the image (probably M110).
    Thanks/Like Hobbit Thanks/liked this post
     
    Brent: Poway, CA
    D7200, D200, F100
    Tokina 12-24mm
    Nikon 18-200mm
    Tokina 28-70mm f2.6-2.8
    Nikon 80-200mm f2.8
    Sigma 150-600mm
    Nikon 50 AF f1.8
    Tokina 100mm f2.8 Macro
    Nikon SB800

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers
    Quote Originally Posted by Bikerbrent View Post
    Great photo, especially under the city lights condition. I also like the small galaxy you captured above Andromeda half way to the top of the image (probably M110).
    Thank you. The editing is a whole new animal to learn. I reworked this image, after learning more editing, and its improved quite a bit. Can't wait to see what I can do with dark skies.

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers-andromeda_dss.jpg
    Thanks/Like Marilynne, Hobbit Thanks/liked this post
     
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  6. #16
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers
    The more I learn, HUGE amount of learning, the better I'm getting. Using a tracker for the stars makes such an incredible difference. I can't wait to see what I can accomplish when I actually know what I'm doing.

    This is a 1.5 hour exposure.

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers-w_lagoon-nebula.jpg
    Thanks/Like TwistedThrottle Thanks/liked this post
     
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  7. #17
    Senior Member

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    @Moab Man
    Great shots! I tried to go out last night but was chased back inside by a nursery of trash pandas and a wandering skunk. I did get some shots of sky and practiced polar alignment, but without an autotracker, I really dont know the sky well enough to find what I want to shoot, even with Sky Guide and Stellarium on my phone showing me what I am supposed to see. Wide angles work great and easy to point and shoot, but once the telephoto goes on, its a best guess kind of thing. My best guess is its all about the practice and the patience.
    What do you see out of the camera? is there an indication you got what you want or do you need to stack and process dozens of images before the Nebula and galaxies pop out? Do you take your shots in your yard or is there travel required? What kind of autotracker do you use? PHD2 for software? What about stacking and processing? How do you tote everything around if you do need to travel? Sorry for all the questions, thanks for sharing your shots.
    Camera- D800, D7500, D40x
    Zoom Lenses-
    DX- Tokina 11-16 f2.8, Sigma A 18-35 f1.8, Nikon 18-140 f3.5-5.6
    FX- Tamron 15-30 f2.8, Nikon 35-70 f2.8, Nikon 80-200 f2.8, Nikon 24-120 f4, Nikon AF-P 70-300 f4.5-5.6 Sigma C 150-600 f5-6.3
    Prime Lenses- Nikon 50 f1.8g, Tamron 85 f1.8, Tokina 100 f2.8, Rokinon HD 8 f3.5

  8. #18
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Quote Originally Posted by Moab Man View Post
    The more I learn, HUGE amount of learning, the better I'm getting. Using a tracker for the stars makes such an incredible difference. I can't wait to see what I can accomplish when I actually know what I'm doing.

    This is a 1.5 hour exposure.
    You are showing more patience than me in getting 1 to 1.5 hours of combined exposures for your photos. I've more or less have been limiting my sessions to 35 exposures per scene change, which translates to about 20 minutes of combined exposure time since I have the shutter normally open around 40-50 seconds max per exposure. I find for the deep sky stuff, I should look around for better stacking tools that what I am using.

  9. #19
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Quote Originally Posted by BF Hammer View Post
    You are showing more patience than me in getting 1 to 1.5 hours of combined exposures for your photos. I've more or less have been limiting my sessions to 35 exposures per scene change, which translates to about 20 minutes of combined exposure time since I have the shutter normally open around 40-50 seconds max per exposure. I find for the deep sky stuff, I should look around for better stacking tools that what I am using.
    Part of what I am learning is that any quality deep space object requires a minimum of an hour of exposure - plus the darks, flats, flats darks, bias, and of course the frames you were shooting. Over the hour, the better it gets.

    Heading out to shoot Andromeda at 800mm for three hours.
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  10. #20
    Senior Member
    Moab Man's Avatar

    Re: Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers
    Quote Originally Posted by TwistedThrottle View Post
    @Moab Man
    Great shots! I tried to go out last night but was chased back inside by a nursery of trash pandas and a wandering skunk. I did get some shots of sky and practiced polar alignment, but without an autotracker, I really dont know the sky well enough to find what I want to shoot, even with Sky Guide and Stellarium on my phone showing me what I am supposed to see. Wide angles work great and easy to point and shoot, but once the telephoto goes on, its a best guess kind of thing. My best guess is its all about the practice and the patience.
    What do you see out of the camera? is there an indication you got what you want or do you need to stack and process dozens of images before the Nebula and galaxies pop out? Do you take your shots in your yard or is there travel required? What kind of autotracker do you use? PHD2 for software? What about stacking and processing? How do you tote everything around if you do need to travel? Sorry for all the questions, thanks for sharing your shots.
    Running out for a 3 hour shoot of Andromeda. I will come back to this and answer all your questions in detail. But, here is a raw image of what it looks like on the camera unedited.

    Astrophotograpy and Star Trackers-w_500_8778_raw.jpg
    Thanks/Like TwistedThrottle Thanks/liked this post
     
    D5100, D7100, D600, D750, Df
    Lenses: Nikon DX 18-55mm, 55-200mm, 55-300mm, Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD & 200-500mm
    Prime: Nikon 35mm, 50mm, & 85mm f/1.8G, 300mm f/4
    Wide Angle: Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX-II 11-16mm f/2.8, Rokinon f/2.8 14mm (chipped)
    Macro: Nikon 40mm, Tamron 90mm
    ​Flash: Nissin MARK II Di622
    Stuff: Expodisc Neutral & Portrait
    ​Editing: CS6, CC, Nik Tools, Portrait Pro 12, Topaz
    Spyder4Pro
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/





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