[Premium]

How to Win an APOD with Pixinsight

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On 7th October 2021, astrophotographer Roberto Sartori won an APOD featuring NGC 6559, an image processed with Pixinsight and obtained from the CHI-2, a telescope of the Telescope Live network. The same dataset is available as a Premium Pro Dataset to every Gold user!

You can find the APOD here: https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap211007.html

And the same image from our gallery: https://telescope.live/gallery/ngc-6559-14

In this tutorial, Roberto will guide you through the end-to-end processing of the Premium Pro Dataset of NGC 6559 using Pixinsight.

The video is shown at 5x speed, processing took around 3 hours and a half.
SPECIFICATIONS
Tutor .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Roberto Sartori
Parts .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 1 video
Duration .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 2h 58m
Level .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Premium
Software used .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Pixinsight
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PART 1
Processing NGC 6559 - APOD winning Astrophotography
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PART 1

Processing NGC 6559 - APOD winning Astrophotography

0:00:00 - 1. Data Inspection (Blink) 0:00:25 - 2. Cosmetic Correction 0:03:03 - 3. Linear Pattern Detection / Subtraction 0:04:48 - 4. Blink + Cosmetic Correction 0:05:40 - 5. Data Analysis (Subframe Selection) 0:06:48 - 6. Blink 0:07:16 - 7. Cosmetic Correction 0:07:37 - 8. Star Alignment 0:07:52 - 9. Blink - Remove a bad frame 0:08:20 - 10. Image Integration - Luminance (using 3 and 5 frames) 0:09:22 - 11. Catalog Star mask generation (discarded since faint stars were not covered) 0:10:50 - 12. Star Mask (standard process) 0:13:23 - 13. StarNet Star Mask 0:13:40 - 14. Create a Luminance mixing good stars and good snr regions 0:14:00 - 15. RGB Channels Integration 0:15:06 - 16. RGB Channel Combination 0:15:15 - 17. RGB Stars Centroid Alignment check 0:15:42 - 18. RGB Channels Alignment 0:16:20 - 19. Aligned RGB channel combination 0:16:25 - 20. Comparison between RGB and aligned RGB 0:16:53 - 21. ABE 0:17:20 - 22. RGB Denoise (MLT) 0:17:50 - 23. Luminance TGV Denoise + support masks 0:19:08 - 24. Luminance Deconvolution + support masks 0:21:38 - 25. RGB non-linear Stretch 0:22:00 - 26. Luminance non-linear Stretch 0:22:09 - 27. L+RGB combination 0:22:31 - 28. Curves 0:22:40 - 29. Starnet: separate stars and nebula 0:23:02 - 30. Local Histogram Equalization applied to faint areas 0:24:42 - 31. Adjust Global Colorfulness 0:25:14 - 32. Lab Expansion 0:25:44 - 33. SCNR 0:26:04 - 34. Curves to highlight the red nebula 0:26:38 - 35. UnsharpMask masked to image's borders 0:29:10 - 36. Reflection nebulas highlight (Curves + HUE masking + PixelMath screen blending) 0:30:28 - 37. Reflection nebulas color tuning (Curves) 0:32:35 - 38. Brighten image (Histogram transformation) 0:32:43 - 39. Increase contrast and colorfulness (Curves) 0:32:50 - 40. Increase red saturation, decrease yellow saturation 0:33:03 - 41. Increase dynamic range on areas with high saturation (LHE + mask support) 0:33:58 - 42. Desaturate sky and faint areas 0:35:00 - 43. Fine tune blue color in blue areas (support mask + PixelMath + Curves) 0:37:26 - 44. Fix NGC 6559 over saturation (support mask + Curves + LHE)
Comments

As a teacher I found this video to be completely hard to stay engaged with. No sound, no voice. Running at 5x speed. Even experienced people must find such a way to learn frustrating. Very poor collation, compilation and editing. No wonder it was free to watch, I wouldn't pay for that kind of delivery. Experienced Pixinsight users might follow what was done and the key steps but everybody else would be left out in the cold. Perhaps videos should be organised according to whether they can be followed or are included just for reference? This was a reference video, not a tutorial. A master's presentation but not a masterclass.