M27 with Starnet++ V2

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Posts: 96
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:28 pm

M27 with Starnet++ V2

Post by decay »

Hi all,

Sunday night has been unusual clear for my location and with quite good seeing as well and so I decided to take a try on M27, despite to the still missing astronomical darkness here in the middlewestern part of Germany.
m27-layer-1-1.jpg (177.5 KiB) Viewed 253 times
200/1000 GSO Newton
Baader MPCC
EOS 2000D (unmod.)

67 lights a 60 secs @ ISO800
flats, bias

Most things went well and I was quite happy with my lights as far as I could judge at that night and so I was looking forward to stacking and postprocessing with ST. But what I got was … millions and billions of stars! Every single spot of my image seemed to be flooded with stars! I tried everything: Shrink Stars, Superstructure Module, but still stars and even more stars everywhere …

I remembered having read about Starnet++ to create starless images and so I downloaded Version 2 and the result was really amazing.

I created a second version of my image doing only a very basic workflow in ST and only using FilmDev at a low level so that only the brightest stars were visible.
Then I combined the two images using Layer Module and did a little cosmetic postprocessing with darktable.

I know, this is pure artistic and in no way scientific, but to be honest … for now I’m quite happy with this image (in most cases I’m not happy with my images :lol: ). Don’t know what I will think next week about it, but … never mind for now.

If someone has suggestions concerning other workflows etc., I would be glad to hear them. And of course, if this approach is disliked, please let me know as well.

Best regards, Dietmar.
Posts: 138
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 3:49 am

Re: M27 with Starnet++ V2

Post by Startrek »

Firstly that’s a really good image
Well done !!
I’m surprised Shrink and Super Structure ( Isolate or Dim Small ) didn’t reduce your starfields impact on the image. They are extremely powerful tools to reduce dense bright Star fields
Did you use a Star mask ?
With Isolate I find I have to reduce Stength from 100 to 30 or 40 or else starfield is impacted to much

By the way , I’m still using V1.7 ( maybe SS has changed in v1.8 ?? )

Nice result

Clear Skies
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Re: M27 with Starnet++ V2

Post by admin »

Hi Dietmar,

Like Martin, I would also expect the image to be able to stand on its own merit without star removal.

Indeed, your image shows precisely why I personally object so much to the use of star removal software like this. To be more precise, in this image, there is one very important star missing, namely the central progenitor star (now a white dwarf) that is responsible for the nebula.

Many images where star removal software was used, indeed show random missing stars, and it IMHO really detracts from the photographic qualities of an image. But, as you say, if art is your goal, anything goes of course!
Ivo Jager
StarTools creator and astronomy enthusiast
Posts: 96
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:28 pm

Re: M27 with Starnet++ V2

Post by decay »

Hi Martin, Hi Ivo,

thank you both for your feedback and comments.

@Martin, no, I have not used a Star Mask. I never tried it, but perhaps I should read about it and give it a try. Thanks for pointing out.

With Shrink I used the Dim preset and Super Structure with the DimSmall default preset. This was the result:
only-ST.jpg (132.8 KiB) Viewed 183 times
I think, you both are right. I will try again, maybe using a Star Mask like Martin suggested. In case of troubles I will open a thread in the Image Processing Troubleshooting forum.

Best regards, Dietmar.
Posts: 96
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:28 pm

Re: M27 with Starnet++ V2

Post by decay »

Hi Ivo,

thank you for pointing out the missing star(s). I should have seen that; once again I was too impatient.

But this was not a problem with using Starnet++. I used the Layer module for the first time and I maybe my image containing only the stars was too dim or I chose the wrong Layer Mode (Lighten). I did it again with "Screen" and now the star is clearly visible:

layer.jpg (39.03 KiB) Viewed 181 times

Anyway, as I said, I will try to get a decent result with ST only.

Best regards, Dietmar.
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