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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.
    If you have a star tracker, it will be much easier, and perhaps a telescope is needed.

    Saturn and Jupiter will converge in the sky, and be at their closest to each other on the 21st. In North America, Jupiter and Saturn are in the southwest sky right after sunset and setting an hour or so later.

    How close will they be? To bare eyes they will look like a single light, I'm sure. In Stellarium, it appears this photo might be possible.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-stellarium-003.png

    If you use a 600mm lens on a full-frame 24MP body, and you crop in down to 1:1 pixel-level, that would be the photo. Teleconverter or an actual telescope would improve things. Photos a couple of days before or after also possible, it would be harder to crop in and have both planets and all moons in frame.

    Speaking of which, my experience with taking photos of these planets separately is that you must over-expose the planet by a lot to see the moons. And Jupiter is much brighter than Saturn, so details will be blown-out on Jupiter if you expose for Saturn. My plan will be to take 3 series of photos exposing for each element. Then after using stacking software to combine the data and clean up the noise and increase apparent resolution, I would use the moons as the base photo, paste a properly exposed Jupiter and Saturn over the blown-out versions on the base.


    › See More: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.



  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Dawg Pics's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    Thanks. I will see if I am up to trying to get an image. I can look up my settings from the last time I shot Jupiter and Saturn. Maybe I can get a couple exposures to get the moons and the stripes on Jupiter.
    "Remember to gaze up at the night sky because there is a little bit of the cosmos in each of us."


    Um yeahhhh, I shoot a lot of pics of my dogs.
    D500 (DOB 05/26/17), D300, D80, SB-800. RIP-D100
    Sigma 150-600mm DG Contemporary, Sigma 50-150mm f2.8, Tamron 28-75mm f2.8,
    Nikkor Nifty-Fifty.

  3. #3
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dawg Pics View Post
    Thanks. I will see if I am up to trying to get an image. I can look up my settings from the last time I shot Jupiter and Saturn. Maybe I can get a couple exposures to get the moons and the stripes on Jupiter.
    Do you think you might be able to see the rings with your 600mm? That would be amazing.
    Cindy - D750, D500, D7200
    Flickr
    and My 2020 Thread

    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Dawg Pics's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    @hark
    This is super-cropped. You can't see the rings like with a telescope.

    I think I had to zoom in with the live view. I originally said you can see the rings, but pretty sure I had to zoom to see them. I have to go back and look at the nef.
    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-saturn-500_2976.jpg
    Last edited by Dawg Pics; 12-03-2020 at 05:24 AM.
    Thanks/Like Peter7100, hark Thanks/liked this post
     
    "Remember to gaze up at the night sky because there is a little bit of the cosmos in each of us."


    Um yeahhhh, I shoot a lot of pics of my dogs.
    D500 (DOB 05/26/17), D300, D80, SB-800. RIP-D100
    Sigma 150-600mm DG Contemporary, Sigma 50-150mm f2.8, Tamron 28-75mm f2.8,
    Nikkor Nifty-Fifty.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.
    For 2 years in a row I have imaged Saturn with my Sigma 150-600mm C lens. In 2019 I only had a tripod and was constantly chasing Saturn as it moved. This year I had a tracking mount and it was very easy to do a series of photos to stack.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-6jtvcex.jpg

    And Jupiter from the same night.
    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-0n8mgxp.jpg

    Now I did have to paste the planet image over the over-exposed image that reveals the moons. I use RegiStax to combine 30 or more photos so the details can show. Yes I am cropped in quite a lot. Original full-size images look like dots.

    And yes, I have been working on all the planets this year. After finally getting Uranus on the 2nd night of trying, I decided Neptune would be beyond my gear right now.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-ph5v74p.jpg
    Thanks/Like Peter7100, Dawg Pics Thanks/liked this post
     

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    PS: You will not see Saturns rings in a viewfinder. Live-View, then use the digital zoom of Live-view as far as it will go, and you will see the rings at pixel-level.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Dawg Pics's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    @BF Hammer
    Which tracker do you have, if you don't mind me asking?

    I get the idea that I want to do some some astrophotography now and then, but then I start looking at all the stuff I need to purchase, which is why I don't do much more than point my camera at the moon or constellations. I also need a new tripod and head. $$$$
    "Remember to gaze up at the night sky because there is a little bit of the cosmos in each of us."


    Um yeahhhh, I shoot a lot of pics of my dogs.
    D500 (DOB 05/26/17), D300, D80, SB-800. RIP-D100
    Sigma 150-600mm DG Contemporary, Sigma 50-150mm f2.8, Tamron 28-75mm f2.8,
    Nikkor Nifty-Fifty.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    BF Hammer's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dawg Pics View Post
    @BF Hammer
    Which tracker do you have, if you don't mind me asking?

    I get the idea that I want to do some some astrophotography now and then, but then I start looking at all the stuff I need to purchase, which is why I don't do much more than point my camera at the moon or constellations. I also need a new tripod and head. $$$$
    This is my tracking mount: Skywatcher AZ-GTi goto mount
    There is a mega-thread at Cloudy Nights forum about this mount. Skywatcher does not endorse this for astrophotography. But they did create and make available the alternate firmware that allows the mount to be reconfigured as an equatorial type mount to keep the same perspective as it tracks an object. Still retains the wi-fi connectivity to a smartphone app so you can still have it go-to a target by selecting it in the app. It also requires some parts to be ordered separately and adapting them to the mount. Not all fits as intended and requires some alteration. But in my case I was willing to do this (not really hard) and the all-in price was still under $450. The mount includes a tripod that is at least as sturdy as any I already have. Factor in the comet we were blessed with this year, I would say I have already been rewarded with my money spent and all else is just icing on the cake. I may be using it still for the upcoming solar eclipse in April 2024.

    Here is what it looks like with camera and 150-600mm lens.
    Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.-zsh46oy.jpg
    Thanks/Like blackstar Thanks/liked this post
     

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Dawg Pics's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    @BF Hammer
    Thanks. I used to be a member of Cloudy Nights, but I have since lost all information to log back in. I wrote them not too long ago to see if I could get back into my old account but never followed up on it.
    "Remember to gaze up at the night sky because there is a little bit of the cosmos in each of us."


    Um yeahhhh, I shoot a lot of pics of my dogs.
    D500 (DOB 05/26/17), D300, D80, SB-800. RIP-D100
    Sigma 150-600mm DG Contemporary, Sigma 50-150mm f2.8, Tamron 28-75mm f2.8,
    Nikkor Nifty-Fifty.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Dawg Pics's Avatar

    Re: Another astrophotography oportunity on 12-21-2020.

    I doubt I am going to try to struggle with an inferior camera set-up to try to get a zoomed view of the conjunction, but I was delighted to see both planets in one eyepiece through my 8 inch scope last night. That was also a struggle because my finder scope is broken. Now, a bit came off the bottom of my mount making it wobble.
    "Remember to gaze up at the night sky because there is a little bit of the cosmos in each of us."


    Um yeahhhh, I shoot a lot of pics of my dogs.
    D500 (DOB 05/26/17), D300, D80, SB-800. RIP-D100
    Sigma 150-600mm DG Contemporary, Sigma 50-150mm f2.8, Tamron 28-75mm f2.8,
    Nikkor Nifty-Fifty.





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