First Ha Solar Image

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Christopher
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First Ha Solar Image

Post by Christopher » Fri Feb 02, 2018 2:52 am

I finally performed my first Ha solar image using data from 1/28 - it seems this was a popular date with a lot of imagers on this forum. There were some nice proms and clear skies. The image below is both my first data capture and first processing attempt. I used a PGR Grasshopper 3 (IMX174) through a Lunt 100THa/B1800. I forgot to re-tune the scope when I switched from prom to surface details so they are more muted than they should be. Feels good to get the first one behind me! Image capture details below. Comments and suggestions welcome.
Sun_Ha_140945_PS v1 copy.jpg
1/28/2018 H-alpha Lunt 100THa/B1800 PGR Grasshopper 3
Sun_Ha_140945_PS v1 copy.jpg (1.36 MiB) Viewed 949 times
Prominence Details
FireCapture v2.5 Settings
------------------------------------
Camera=Grasshopper3 GS3-U3-23S6M
Filter=L
Profile=Sun_Ha
Filename=Sun_Ha_140340.ser
Date=280118
Start=140155.447
Mid=140340.682
End=140525.918
Start(UT)=190155.447
Mid(UT)=190340.682
End(UT)=190525.918
Duration=210.471s
Date_format=ddMMyy
Time_format=HHmmss
LT=UT -5h
Frames captured=1664
File type=SER
Binning=no
ROI=1920x1200
ROI(Offset)=0x0
FPS (avg.)=7
Shutter=2.919ms
Gain=2025 (67%)
Exposure=112
Mode7=off
Sharpness=1024
FPS=163.31 (off)
AutoExposure=off
Brightness=327
Gamma=1929
AutoHisto=75 (off)
SoftwareGain=10 (off)
Histogramm(min)=880
Histogramm(max)=4088
Histogramm=99%
Noise(avg.deviation)=n/a
Limit=none
Sensor temperature=33.6 °C
dimensions: 1920 x 1200
frames: 1664
pixel depth: 16 bit/pixel
PGR Grasshopper3 GS3-U3-23S6M
temp: 33.60 C
fps: 9.08
gain: 19.99
exp: 2.92 ms
gamma: 1929.00

Surface Details
FireCapture v2.5 Settings
------------------------------------
Camera=Grasshopper3 GS3-U3-23S6M
Filter=L
Profile=Sun_Ha
Filename=Sun_Ha_140340.ser
Date=280118
Start=140155.447
Mid=140340.682
End=140525.918
Start(UT)=190155.447
Mid(UT)=190340.682
End(UT)=190525.918
Duration=210.471s
Date_format=ddMMyy
Time_format=HHmmss
LT=UT -5h
Frames captured=1664
File type=SER
Binning=no
ROI=1920x1200
ROI(Offset)=0x0
FPS (avg.)=7
Shutter=2.919ms
Gain=2025 (67%)
Exposure=112
Mode7=off
Sharpness=1024
FPS=163.31 (off)
AutoExposure=off
Brightness=327
Gamma=1929
AutoHisto=75 (off)
SoftwareGain=10 (off)
Histogramm(min)=880
Histogramm(max)=4088
Histogramm=99%
Noise(avg.deviation)=n/a
Limit=none
Sensor temperature=33.6 °C
dimensions: 1920 x 1200
frames: 1664
pixel depth: 16 bit/pixel
PGR Grasshopper3 GS3-U3-23S6M
temp: 33.60 C
fps: 9.08
gain: 19.99
exp: 2.92 ms
gamma: 1929.00
Christopher

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by marktownley » Fri Feb 02, 2018 6:51 am

It's a great image Christopher, well done!
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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Carbon60 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:06 am

An excellent first image, Christopher.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 12:12 pm

Hi Christopher, we use the same camera. You should be able to get a much higher fps. 1600 images should take around 10 - 15 seconds. Maybe it has something to do with your computer or laptop? Has it got USB3?
You used a level of gain and gamma much higher than I normally do. Plus I don't take Sers but Avi's. Mode 7 is on when I image. Can't remember (have not seen the sun for months) if I choose 16 bits. Don't think so. Good luck! Bart.
Last edited by bart1805 on Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by eroel » Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:38 pm

Christopher:
Very good image.
Best regards and have a nice and sunny weekend.
Eric.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by ffellah » Fri Feb 02, 2018 4:22 pm

Very nice first image, Christopher !

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by torsinadoc » Fri Feb 02, 2018 4:31 pm

Very nice image.
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Christopher
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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Christopher » Fri Feb 02, 2018 9:36 pm

Thank you all for the feedback and encouragement.

Bart,

"Maybe it has something to do with your computer or laptop? Has it got USB3?"

I am working with a brand new mid-level gaming laptop with dedicated video card/memory and SSD along with USB3. PC won't be the issue. But I have noticed that there is something that constrains the FPS (other than exposure). Perhaps there's a setting in Firecapture constraining it?

"You used a level of gain and gamma much higher than I normally do. Plus I don't take Sers but Avi's. Mode 7 is on when I image. Can't remember (have not seen the sun for months) if I choose 16 bits. Don't think so."

Thanks for the advice on gain and gamma. I will try to lower these. Firecapture defaults to SER if you capture in 16bit. I actually had some of each (SER at 16 and AVI at 8 bit) and didn't notice a difference in performance or processing after the fact.

Regards,
Christopher

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:18 am

Hi Christopher,
You are right, SER gives by default 16 bit. The camera has a 10 / 12 bit ADC.
You could try this, just attach the camera to the laptop when it is on your desk.
Mode 7 on
AVI
A smaller ROI should also give a faster framerate.
And see what fps you are able to record.

Another question. When you were imaging and changed the Gamma setting, did you notice a change in the image on screen? If not I could mail you a small file Torsten send me. One way or the other the camera automatically recorded in RAW format, and in RAW you can't control Gamma. You could also test this with the camera on your desk.
I notice you have a 99% histogram, maybe try to actieve around 75%.
Note that I am not an expert, just struggling like you. (-;
Good luck, Bart.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by PDB » Sat Feb 03, 2018 10:11 am

Hi
You are right, SER gives by default 16 bit. The camera has a 10 / 12 bit ADC.
In fact it's just the opposite. If you enable 16bit capture, you need to record in SER because there is only 8bit AVI (or 3x8 for color) 16bit AVI does not exist.

Mode 7 on will enable the 12 bit ADC so Bart is right, if you record in 16 bit, it should be on. see https://www.ptgrey.com/support/downloads/10304 (check the entries for GS3-U3-23S6M)

The frame-rate is extremely low. Looks like USB2 speed. Does the frame rate change when recording, or if not recording does FC indicate the same low framerate. If frame rate is low while not in recording mode it is either the camera or the USB connection. If the framerate drops it is your disc that is not fast enough.

Anyway, nice image. (wish we had some sun ...)

Regards,

Paul

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 10:24 am

You are right Paul it is indeed like you describe. But if a camera has a 12 bit ADC it does not seem logical to record in 16 bit. Or am I missing something?

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by PDB » Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:08 am

Well, dynamic range will be higher. I don't know how PGR handles it, but usually the 12 bit are shifted towards the high end. So you have 12 meaningfull bits which is still more than 8.
There are lots of discussions if it is meaningfull or not to record in 16 bit. For nice images probably not, can be done in 8 bit as well. (And monitors can't show 16 bit graylevels anyway) One advantage can be is that from 1 video you can generate 2 images with different post-processing: 1 with proms and 1 with surface detail and combine these.

Regards,

Paul

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by robert » Sat Feb 03, 2018 1:46 pm

Nice disk
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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Montana » Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:47 pm

Wow!! what a first disc! beautiful clarity and detail in the proms :hamster: :bow
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Christopher
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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Christopher » Sun Feb 04, 2018 1:18 am

Thanks Robert and Alexandra. Alexandra, I found your tutorial on image capture very informative. I used it to mentally rehearse the sequence. Thanks for sharing it!

Bart,
Did some desktop imaging as you suggested. First discovery (keep in mind, new laptop here) is that USB2 and USB3 look identical. I had the camera connected to USB 2 first time out. FPS rates on USB3 as follows:
16 bit - 85FPS
8 bit mode 0 - 168FPS
Mode 7 - 128FPS
That's more like it!!
As for gamma changes affecting the preview, I can't detect them on either preview screen or histogram keeping in mind that the camera is connected but I've got it capped. Not sure how to interpret that. Do I need a patch or more testing?
Christopher

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 8:05 am

Hi Christopher, nice that is a huge improvement! If you have the camera on your desk, cap off. And then change the Gamma, from as low as you can to as high as you can. Then any change in the histogram? If not I will look later today for the patch. Bart.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by PDB » Sun Feb 04, 2018 8:19 am

Hi,

any idea where PGR actually applies gamma? If it is in hardware, it might give some results. if it is a software function in the driver (like most cameras) then you should NOT use it and keep gamma neutral (linear). If not you just loos information in the data that you can never recover afterwards. That same gamma function (software based) can be done in postprocessing, and you will have much more possibilities.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 8:45 am

Hi Paul, don't know whether it is software or hardware based, assume it is software based. I use it mainly when I am focussing. So low Gamma. When imaging I return close to the neutral position. Bart.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Derek Klepp » Sun Feb 04, 2018 9:19 am

Looks good.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Christopher » Sun Feb 04, 2018 1:42 pm

Thanks Derek,

Bart,
No change in the histogram capped or uncapped.
Thanks,
Christopher

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 1:53 pm

Well. The good thing is that you have Gamma in the neutral position. (-;
If you PM me I will send you the email conversation with Torsten and the patch.

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Christopher » Sun Feb 04, 2018 9:57 pm

Bart,
I installed the replacement dll file. It did exactly what you described - it enables the Gamma adjustment in the preview image. Unfortunately it also cuts the FPS nearly in half from about 168 to 87fps. To confirm I copied to the old dll back and it immediately boosted the fps back to 168. I gather from the communication with Torsten that it's changing the default camera mode between RAW and mono (old vs. new dll respectively). Is that correct? If so, it looks like mono is a slower mode than RAW. Also of note, with the old dll, as I mentioned before there is a change in fps from 168 to 128 when switching from Mode 0 to Mode 7. With the new dll no such change occurs - it remains steady at 87fps. At this point I suppose the question is for both Mode 7 and Gamma adjustment are they worth the trade off in fps?
Christopher

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by bart1805 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 10:41 pm

Hi Christopher,
Yes that is correct. RAW is faster than mono. But with less quality. Mode 7 off is faster than mode 7 on, but with less quality. Interesting question. What if you can stack more images because you use RAW and Mode 0. Better or worse than less images but each image is of a better quality?
For me it is not a big deal. I normally don't image using the complete sensor, but a ROI. The fps is already really high with Mono and mode7 on. I have a bigger problem with the enormous amount of data that wants to jump on the relatively small SSD. But tempting to try it out whenever the sun decides to show itself again....
@Paul, here is more how Gamma is applied in the PGR / FLIR camera's:
https://www.ptgrey.com/KB/10282

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Re: First Ha Solar Image

Post by Ewan » Sun Feb 04, 2018 10:52 pm

Firstly well done Christopher on your 1st FD capture.

I have a PG IMX174 but don't 'get on' with FC so I use Genika Astro which is very straightforward.
I think my USB3 ports has SS next to the port so you know which is which, worth a look.
From what I have read SER files are preferable over AVI as is 16Bit over 8, you cant add what you don't capture.

In Genika at full res, 1900 x 1200, in 16Bit I get 83Fps, 10 seconds @ 6Ms is 827 frames, 8Bit I get 87Fps, 10 seconds @ 6Ms is 872.
In RAW mode though I then got 16Bit = 829 but 8Bit gave 1630. All in MODE 0
MODE 7 16Bit = 818 Frames 8Bit = 1278.

Not sure if any of that helps but could show you what to expect.

Atb
Ewan

PS as a side note @ 800 x 600 ROI using 3Ms, 10 second capture in RAW was 3173 frames (MODE 7 was 2489) AND RAW OFF was 3168 (MODE 7 was 2485)

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