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startrails freeware

beth anthony

New member
i found a fun piece of freeware that lets a user stitch multiple images of the night sky together to create star trails.
startrails

i used it to create this image:


basically all i did was put the camera on a tripod, set the manual focus and set the manual exposure (20 seconds, iso 400, f/4 if i remember correctly). i plugged in the canon shutter release cable and took a test shot. once i verified that the exposure was correct i pushed the button on the shutter release cable and locked it in place. 138 images or about 2 hours later i retrieved the camera and now full cf card and loaded all of the images in to lightroom to convert to jpgs, then loaded the jpgs into the startrails software. it took awhile to load them, but it processed them as it went. the startrails look jagged in this version because it's been resized, but in the unresized image the trails are much smoother.

the image i posted was from my backyard. i wanted to do some during my last trip to grand tetons n.p. but due to the clouds i wasn't able to.
 
i found a fun piece of freeware that lets a user stitch multiple images of the night sky together to create star trails.
Hi Beth,

That came out well. You can do the same thing, though a bit clumsier, by layering the expusures, and use a "Lighten" blending mode. That will take the lighter pixel in a stack and keep the rest unchanged.

That will also work fine with fireworks.

Cheers,
Bart
 

beth anthony

New member
bart, i tried that first (cause i'm a bit of a nerd like that, always want to do it myself), but the star trails came out as dotted lines which indicated the amount the star had moved between shots. the startrails software connects the dots.
 
bart, i tried that first (cause i'm a bit of a nerd like that, always want to do it myself), but the star trails came out as dotted lines which indicated the amount the star had moved between shots. the startrails software connects the dots.
Hi Beth,

I see, that's a neat trick. To bad the software requires an installation of .net V1 which doesn't play nice with Vista 64-bits, or did you happen to get it running with a later .net version, e.g. 3.5?

Cheers,
Bart

P.S. Maybe Stellarium can be used to generate the appropriate timelapse images, in case one needs star-trails on short notice for a given location but the nights are cloudy...
 
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