Saturday, 22 December 2007

More of the moon

A clear night appeared after a number of rather overcast, not to say wet evenings. The moon was high and nearly full, so I took the chance to try some more photos.

It is well known that a full moon is not so photogenic as a half moon. You don't get the crater shadows appearing so it is not as clear. Anyway - the results weren't too bad, but the breakthrough tonight was in the processing.

I used registax to stack multiple images from a video of the moon, and this works well. The only trouble is registax can be very slow on the processing. I'd experimented with different forms of conversion from .MOV to .AVI with mixed results. I found a couple of converters that work, 1 produced very grainy results, the other was better. However sometimes it could take over an hour to process a 30s clip. One time I left if running all night to finish.

I looked around for other options, and found the Rad video tools which have a conversion facility as part of the kit. It also has a couple of useful options whereby I can exclude the sound (which isn't needed obviously) and it also allows for an uncompressed output format. I tried this out, and got HUGE AVI files - 700Mb from a 23Mb .MOV file. This is ok, as I only keep the .AVI as temporary files while processing. The good news, registax loves the uncompressed format, and screams through the frames in comparison to the compressed images. The whole thing can now be processed in a few seconds - maybe a minute! Rad video tools is now my new best friend!

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