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IC1396 Elephant Trunk Nebula
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Here are the full resolution images

1) ends in DBE is the original post-process in early 2020

2) ends in SXT-1 is the first post-process in Jan 2022 (over stretched)

3) ends in SXT-2 is the final post-process in Jan 2022 (medium stretch)


The image labeled DBE, (I am assuming that's the one processed with PI), is a big improvement over the other. However, I think it can benefit even more with further processing in PI. You can start using further noise reduction with the SCNR function. Keep the default settings (color to remove = Greeen and protection method = Average Neutral) but decrease the amount, you might want to try 0.5 as a starting point.

Of course they way you process your images is entirely personal preference but I think too much data has been clipped in the second image. I think if you add more data to the stack, the signal will increase and give you a little more flexibility during processing.

Great work!


What an amazing hobby! I have been collecting data for DSOs since 2019 and over the holiday, I decided to revisit some old data stacks and re-do the post-process (I use PixInsight) to see if I have learned anything in the past two years. Image #1 is my original result on IC1396 from the data I collected in Dec 2019

Image #2 is the result from re-processing in Jan 2022 (same stack of the original Dec 2019 data)

Wow! I can't believe how much more signal was in my original data set. I have gone back and re-processed some of my best data on the ED80 over the last two years and every object looked better but this one probably had the largest signal-jump.


Orion Sirius EQ-G mount

Orion ED80 Refractor (600mm f7.5) with 0.85x field flattener

ZWO ASI294MC Pro camera (4144x2822 pixels)

ZWO ASIair computer

ZWO EAF focuser

ZWO Filter Wheel

Data Collection:

Dec 27 2019 in Upper Peninsulas of Michigan Bortle 2 (46.2371N 88.0068W)

Not auto-guided

Camera at -20C and 200gain

60x60sec frames

1.25" Astronomik L2 UVIR cut filter

Data Process:

Calibrated, Registered, Normalized and Integrated in AstroPixelProcessor (Darks, Bias)

Post-process in PixInsight


The more I looked at the second image, the more I felt I was too aggressive in some of the post-process. Below I present a third version that I think still brings out more signal in the key areas but doesn't do it at the expense of losing detail elsewhere.

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