ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – gain settings

I have been looking through the internet for information on what gain settings people use for astrophotography with their CCD/CMOS imagers. It does look like there are certain settings which can be useful for the older sensors, but how about for the Sony sensor of the ASI178MM-cooled? I decided to find out about the difference between a few of the gain settings on this camera, as this is worth knowing for people who are genuinely interested in using it for guided deep sky imaging. Continue reading ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – gain settings

ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – Master Dark frames

As the weather has not been suitable for imaging, I decided to do some master dark frames with the ZWO ASI178MM-cooled at different gain settings. I chose to cool the sensor down to -20 degrees Celsius, as I thought that this would still be achievable when imaging during summer nights – allowing me to use just one set of master dark frames throughout the year. Continue reading ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – Master Dark frames

Solar imaging – 16/2/16 (+ something unexpected)

As I have been very busy trying to make the most of all the opportunities to do imaging, I have not had the time to process these until now. It can be predicted that the clear skies will not last in England, and hence it is good to have things to process on those days when it is not possible to do imaging. Here are the solar images I managed to capture last week, including a surprise. Continue reading Solar imaging – 16/2/16 (+ something unexpected)

Rosette nebula – Samyang 135mm F2 + narrow band filters

On Valentine’s day I did post a picture of the Rosette nebula. What I did not tell you was that it was imaged using the Samyang 135mm F2 lens and my Astronomik narrowband filters (specifically H-alpha and O-III). That final photo was a result of 5 x 5min H-alpha images making up the red channel and 14 x 5min O-III images making up both the blue and green channels. I used the gain setting of 100 (19% gain) on the ZWO ASI178MM-cooled, and sensor temperature at -25 degrees celsius. Continue reading Rosette nebula – Samyang 135mm F2 + narrow band filters

Astronomik Narrowband Filters

A while back, I had acquired the Samyang 135mm F2 lens in Canon EOS mount for astrophotography, as it was available at a very good price. As this lens is very sharp even wide open, I felt I had to get the most out of it and consider narrowband imaging. While researching the filter choice, I had narrowed it down to either the Baader narrowband F2 filters or the Astronomik set (H-alpha, SII and OIII) in 1.25″. But I decided to go down the Astronomik route as this has always been the brand of astronomy filters I’ve used (other than the Baader U and UV/IR cut). Continue reading Astronomik Narrowband Filters

ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – UV imaging (part 2)

Having tested the ZWO ASI178MM-cooled for UV imaging, and found that it is very capable for such invisible band imaging, I decided to take it to the next level of testing to see what are the limits to its capabilities. My subject is the more well known Dandelion flower which I had picked from my back garden. This flower has been imaged many times in UV, so it is sort of a reference flower for UV imaging. Continue reading ZWO ASI178MM-cooled – UV imaging (part 2)

Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s day to everyone. The photo of the day is dedicated to my wife, mother and sister, who are all over 6,000 miles away from England. So it is only fitting to send them this picture of the Rosette nebula, so named as it resembles a rose which I have portrayed in red. It is worth noting that this nebula is some 5,000 light years away from earth, symbolic of when your loved ones are ‘light-years’ away. Continue reading Valentine’s Day

Geoptik Canon CCD Adapter

I have done astrophotography with a modified Olympus E-PL5 for quite a while now. With the acquisition of the mono cooled ZWO ASI178MM-cool camera, it has opened up huge possibilities for me. One of the methods of imaging that I have been looking to get into, is with narrowband imaging, i.e. using 12nm narrow bandwidth filters to image in H-alpha, S-II and O-III. But this would require a fast imaging system. I had bought the Samyang 135mm F2.0 lens for this, and finally the missing piece of the puzzle has arrived – the Geoptik Canon CCD adapter. Continue reading Geoptik Canon CCD Adapter

Solar H-alpha imaging – ZWO ASI178MM-cooled (update)

Since the last attempt at solar H-alpha imaging with the Daystar Quark and ZWO ASI178MM-cooled, I have been looking for the opportunity again to image the sun. I had previously encountered Newton rings, suggesting that the camera was not aligned properly with the Daystar Quark. So there were a few things I wanted to try. Sunday 7/2/16 gave me the perfect opportunity, as the skies cleared long enough for me to do some imaging. And the sun had many features to image as well. Continue reading Solar H-alpha imaging – ZWO ASI178MM-cooled (update)