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Thread: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

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    Would love to see everyone's updated PHD graphs here and what they did to improve them!
    Name: Gus OTAs: ED 100 PRO refractor, Orion ST80 (not the CF), 8" Dob stuck in Canada Mounts:HEQ5PRO Synscan mount, Manfrotto Tripod CAMS: Guidecam Philips SPC900 webcams (4), Canon unmodded-450D DSLR

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    Default

    I haven't changed too much.....Changed my pixel box from 15 to 10, my movement from .15 to .05 or .10 pending what part of the sky I'm on. Cg5 is still purring

    Doing 5mins color subs on the Flaming star.

    PHD on IC405 by jsigone, on Flickr
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  3. #23
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    Default Auto guiding works great

    Hi,

    Put the scope back in the observatory and with the help of PemPro got realigned really quickly (one evening). My first target with my new filter wheel and filters was M51. This is basically the 3rd tri-color image I have done with my 8300M.

    I had a dickens of a time for a couple nights as the filter wheel was not being read using CCDSoft, but worked fine with CCDOpps. Image was stacked using CCDStack which I find to be everything people claim it to be. I was so happy to have solved the filter wheel problem I really didn't process the image any further.

    I did a screen shot of the PHD graph and accidentally erased it so I'll do another for my next capture.

    I changed the guide Rate on the LX200 from 66 to 50 and that seemed to help smooth out guiding. During the 100 plus minutes of the exposures, the PHD graph never varied a full y axis line which if I recall is a single pixel, so I was happy.

    I think PHD is working pretty good for me so, now I'm moving on to more pre-processing. So,
    enjoy M51.

    Meade LX200 10” ACF @f10
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    Astro-Tech 65mm guide scope using Meade DSI III Pro as autoguider
    5, 5-minute exposures per channel, binned 2X2 stacked and processed using CCD Stack

    Dave
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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Hmnn, no entries in this post for a while? I've been stumbling around with PHD and the iEQ45, trying to find a happy medium. Right now, the mount seems to be happiest with a guiding rate of .50 but that may change next time out? With the PHD settings on the screenshot, I was able to get perfect 4 minute exposures, some night I will try 5 or 10 minutes, just to see how it performs. I can't imagine imaging for 10 minutes on anything, but who knows?



    I ran the PHD log file in PECPrep to see what kind of periodic error the mount was showing, and it looks pretty good, darn good actually. The only thing I'm unsure of is in the PECPrep settings....the focal length? I'm presuming they mean the focal length of the guide scope, so that's what I put in? Anyway, here's the graph from PECPrep:



    For both of these graphs I had an almost perfect PA...I purposely left the mount 1 arc minute east just so PHD had something to do.

    Here's the 4 minute image of the Cave Nebula...nice stars:



    I will need a couple more follow up sessions to confirm all this data, but I am optomistic at this point. Can't use PECPrep to generate a PEC profile, as the iEQ45 is not supported, but I guess I could run the mount routine at some point, although I really don't think it's needed.

    Cheers all,

    Paul
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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Hi Paul,

    Just a note. The graph in PECprep is showing the "guided" graph not your PEC. In order to display the true PEC of the mount, guiding must be turned off. (Click on the "brain" in PHD and check the "disable guiding output" box). This will give you the true PEC for the mount.

    However the PHD graph you have it pretty good as is. Perhaps a little Dec drift towards the end but overall not bad. Congrats!
    Gordon
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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    (Click on the "brain" in PHD and check the "disable guiding output" box). This will give you the true PEC for the mount.
    Aha....I thought that graph looked too good. And, for the focal length...they are talking about the guide scope right?

    Thanks for the input...I have turned off guiding in the past to watch the PHD graph, next time out I'll turn it off for a cycle (400 sec's) and then clear it and restart guiding. That should post it's own log file.

    Thanks again Gordon,

    Best

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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Correct Paul!

    FL for the guide scope.
    Gordon
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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Well I finally think I got the NEQ6 aligned. I am using the new 3.28 Beta firmware with the polar re-align function. I spent close to 3 hours last night fine tuning my polar alignment. I do not think I will try to tweak it any further based on my PHD graph. The NEQ6 blows my old LXD75 out of the water, it's like driving a Chevy Chevette for years and then getting a new Cadilac!

    PHD Graph 22 Aug 12.docx
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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Scott...were you guiding on a hot pixel..? The PHD graph is flat-lined. You really can't tell anything from that particular graph.

    Cheers,

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    Default Re: PHD Graph Autoguiding Optimization for Astrophotography Part 2

    Oh no, it can't be true Paul, I guess I will have to confirm that it was not a hot pixel. Just when I thought I had everything figured out.
    This used to be a great place to hang out but now it is not safe here anymore.

 

 
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