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Posts Made By: Ivan Ong

April 26, 2004 07:06 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System


Posted By Ivan Ong

I am thinking of getting a laptop, I was wondering if an Apple Powerbook G4 would be able to handle the majority of astrophotography functions? I will be doing planetary stuff with webcam and also autoguiding astrophotography in the near future.
Or should I stay with a Windows XP system due to greater software support and availibility?
Advice greatly appreciated, thanks.

May 9, 2004 02:30 AM Forum: Deep Sky Observing


Posted By Ivan Ong

Wow- I just drove 160 miles to my dark site, left at 5pm under clear blue skies, and got there just to see dark thunder clouds move in the moment I got out of the car. The sky literally went gray within 10 mintues. Nothing to do but to get back in and drive the 160 bloody miles home.

Hope someone is enjoying their night out under the stars. don't invite me to your star party. I am a cloud magnet!

June 22, 2004 09:11 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Powering my laptop

Posted By Ivan Ong

Hello all, I recently purchased a HP laptop, and I will like to use it in the field. Since the battery does not last long, what is the best way of powering this using a more durable source? I see from my transformer it works off 18.5V DC, so can I use a 18.5V Kendrick heavy duty battery directly?
Any advice is greatly appreciated, thanks, Ivan

August 5, 2004 08:32 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

M31 with my digital rebel

Posted By Ivan Ong

Hi All, I have been trying to get some nice photos of M31 with my digital rebel through my FS-102 with f/6 reducer. After a 12 min composite photo at 400ASA setting, I can only get the central yellow part with the nice dust lanes. I would also very much like to image the beautiful blue peripherals of the galaxy. Anyone knows how I can image that? Thanks in advance,

August 30, 2004 01:56 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Digital Rebel better than D70?

Posted By Ivan Ong

I saw someone's new D70 a couple of weeks back- he had piggy backed for a wide field shot of the milky way. It was very nice color balance and sharp but on one entire edge of the frame there was a bright purple/red noise bar, attenuating about 20% into the frame. What a shame. He said it was the second D70, he exchanged the first one adn this was still the same. I don't recall his exposures, but it looked to be 4-5 min at say 400ASA. I don't get this with my Digital Rebel. I think it is thermally-induced, not a light leak. Perhaps the CCD chip has one edge near hot circuitry, or maybe that edge is where the connections are?
Anyone with opinions?

September 12, 2004 05:27 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

In between the Hurricanes: NGC 457

Posted By Ivan Ong

Taking a little time out in between the hurricanes, I took this through my 300D in the mountains. 2 combined exposures of 4min at 800 ASA setting, no dark frame subtraction. I used my FS-102 with f6 reducer, so image scale was kindda small. Not experienced enough yet to manual track at f8. So does this look like E.T., a lobster or pick-up truck running down some insects?


October 7, 2004 07:26 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Resolving nearby galaxies

Posted By Ivan Ong

I was looking at today's ATWB photo of the day of the M31. My question is, with today's quickly advancing optics and imaging & processing techniques, is it going to be possible in the near future to resolve stars in the closest galaxies, say M31? That would be totally amazing.

October 8, 2004 06:55 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Canon 20D meets North American Nebula

Posted By Ivan Ong

OK, I'm no expert on ccd astrophotogrpahy, so this pic is not callibrated, no dark frame subtraction etc. Total 4 min in Canon 20D, f6 (Tak FS-102, reducer), manually guided Vixen Sphinx. This image was enhanced slightly in photoshop elements.

I am impressed with the 20D, I like it very much. Settings were ISO 1600! Noise level is decent. I had a Rebel previously, and I think this baby sucks battery more aggresively. Also weighs much more. Very solid build. Have not noticed firmware issues some people have complained about.

I'll post more if you'all are interested. Clear skies,

October 26, 2004 05:54 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

60mm APO's?

Posted By Ivan Ong

I was quite mystified by the selection of 60mm APOs/semi APO's on the latest issue of S&T. Aren't they a little....uh....small? They are not as portable as a nice pair of Canon IS 15x50's becuase you need to pack a sturdy tripod and some decent Alt-Az mount (at very least a Bogen 410), and if you want to do that, you might as well get something useful in the 80-100mm range? I think in this size and price range nothing beats a nice high quality pair of binos.

Just wondering, Ivan

October 29, 2004 07:02 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

5" or 6" APO question

Posted By Ivan Ong

Hi, I am planning to step up from my 4" Tak to either a 5" or 6" APO. My interest in an instrument in such a class will be visual planetary observation, double stars and also astrophotography. I already have a C9.25" and am quite happy with that for deep sky objects.

I have read that a jump from 4" to 5" is very noticeble while 5" to 6" is not. I have seen aperture v.s. light collection plots but can someone with first hand visual experience with this concur or disagree with this fact?

I ask this question becuase of the huge cost difference between a 5" and 6" and also mount requirements.

Thanks in advance for your opinions.