I just built an astro camera tracker with bits costing around £10 and tried it out with my Canon SX230HS. It seemed to track very well and here is a shot of Orion made up of 35 exposures of 150 seconds stacked together in DSS and processed in StarTools.
Another shot taken with my £95 SX530HS. Software = CHDK, Astrokam, ASPS, PHD2, DSS, StarTools and Paint.Net.
I am a member of the Powershotters group who asked for some details on how I processed this image. Here is a light image:
and here is a dark image
The 48 light and 15 dark images were stacked in Deep Sky Stacker along with 25 flats and 15 offsets to produce the FITS image below. This was then processed in StarTools to give the final result above.
Here is a shot I took with my SX530HS PowerShot at maximum optical zoom. Captured in CHDK AstroKam, guided by PHD2, stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and processed in StarTools and Paint.NET.
Not bad for a second hand camera with no telescope?
Took these using my Canon SX530HS controlled by AstroKam. Other software used: CHDK, PHD2, ASPS, DSS and StarTools.
I left AstroKam running overnight with my SX530HS recently and it worked great. I had set up an 8 target observing list in Cartes du Ciel and imported it into AstroKam with 60 minutes per target and 300 seconds per exposure. Darks and biases were set at 1 per 5 lights.
AstroKam automatically controlled PHD2 autoguiding and plate solved each target using All Sky Plate Solver to provide spot on aiming.
The next morning I used the sort module to remove any duff shots and satellite trails and then generate Deep Sky Stacker project files. These were then batch processed in DSS and processed in StarTools. Final touchup in Paint.Net and I got the results below.
These were all shot at 25x zoom so I can still zoom in to 50x for more detail.
Just tried out my new 1100D at prime focus thru my 4SE’s optical port in alt-az mode. I captured 90 frames (each 20s x ISO6400) using Canon EOS Utilities and then used AstroKam to filter them down to 56 good frames. DeepSkyStacker did its stacking magic and then Star Tools brought out the detail and colors.
Click on the image to see the original or click this link to see a zoomable version.
Update: I actually captured in 3 batches to give a total of 114 good light frames. Below is the new result and it looks like the extra frames give more detail in the fainter regions.
Again, here is a zoomable version.
This was taken with my Canon A810 looking thru my Nexstar 4SE in alt-az mode. Stacked in DeepSkyStacker and processed in Star Tools then Gimp.
Here is my latest AstroKam shot of M42 in Orion taken with my £50 Canon A810 mounted on my Nexstar 4SE in alt-az mode. AstroKam automatically slewed to M42 during an all-night survey and spent 60 minutes shooting lights, darks and offsets. The best 43 lights were selected using AstroKam’s Sort module and stacked in DeepSkyStacker and processed in the beta version of Star Tools.
UPDATE: Ivo of Star Tools showed me how to process my FITS files and here is his take on my M42 below. He used Star Tools’s Repair module to turn my arrowhead stars into points – not bad for an alt-az mount.
I just tried out my new 1100D with a Canon 75-300 zoom on some deep sky objects. The camera was mounted on a Nexstar 4SE mount in alt-az mode aligned using 1 star with no guiding. My location is in a heavily light polluted city. Capture was by the Canon EOS utility program which captured around 30 shots at 30 seconds and 1600 ISO for each object. Stacking was done in DeepSkyStacker and post processing in Star Tools.
Still getting the hang of the software but I am pretty pleased with my first efforts at deep sky. I am still trying to figure why the stars are little triangles – vibration or lens distortion? Click on any image to view the original frame.