Part of the fun of astrophotography is revisiting old data as your skills improve. I've been restricted to lifting no more than 10 pounds. After digesting many of Adam Block's terrific PixInsight videos, I decided to rework some of my old images.
This Omega Centauri image from 2016 data was my first try at this target, with a Sony NEX-5N camera body and Vivitar 135mm f/2.8 lens on the Vixen Polarie star tracking mount. The camera body and lens were about $200, second hand on eBay, and my skills basic. This was made from only 6 minutes of data taken as 24 15" exposures at a noisy ISO 6400. Before I'd only used the Vixen Polarie for wide field shots and wasn't confident in its tracking with a longer lens. Reworking this sparse noisy data was a challenge:
I like this image because it shows what it possible with very inexpensive equipment. The entire kit, camera body, lens, tracking mount, tripod and accessories was under $700, mostly second hand.
Below is may original rendering of the data using Nebulosity and Photoshop. Much more noise comes through and the colors are funky, but the potential inspired me to work harder.
Content created: 2021-05-06
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