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Is there a mask tool?


(@jay6879)
Brown Dwarf Customer
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 9
Topic starter  

I'm halfway through my trial period and I gotta say, there's a lot here that I like about APP. I manage to get some pretty good results using mainly default settings, and I'm looking forward to digging deeper, but there's one tool that I csnt seem to find that would be helpful. A mask tool. Am I looking in the wrong place or is there no masking tool? If there isn't, will there be one in a future update?


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(@wvreeven)
Galaxy Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
Posts: 2035
 

@jay6879 Many of the tools in APP used masks, even if they are implicit. What kind of mask are you looking for exactly?


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(@jay6879)
Brown Dwarf Customer
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 9
Topic starter  

@wvreeven 

I'm fairly new to processing astrophotography images (and really new to APP) so forgive me if I'm not understanding this all properly, but I don't see a way to say mask out the stars and stretch or manipulate a nebula or galaxy for example.

It seems like when you're stretching the image it's all or nothing?


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(@wvreeven)
Galaxy Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
Posts: 2035
 

@jay6879 There is the star reduction tool in the tools tab where you can remove the stars but that's all that's possible at the moment. There are plans to allow for separating the stars from the nebula and later combine them again so both can be processed separately. So, yes, at the moment when stretching the image it is all or nothing.


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(@jay6879)
Brown Dwarf Customer
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 9
Topic starter  

@wvreeven 

Ayyy, so there ARE plans to do that! Would those plans include the ability to manually mask objects?

My trial is up soon and I'm considering a purchase. For the most part APP does everything I'd want it to despite there being a few things (masking for example) that would be great to have.

For what it's worth I do find the star reduction tool to work quite well.

 


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(@col)
Red Giant Customer
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 117
 

Yes there is a mask generation at least. After the star analysis step, you can go to the menu at the top where you chooe linear, calibrated etc. and the bottom option is star map. that gives you the star map for the star analysis section, so choose a high number to ensure you capture all, or a star analysis star count that will give you all the stars that you wish to mask. that images can be saved if you wish to blur it and use it as a star mask. As far as I know, it cannot be used within APP right now as a mask option, but it can in photoshop is you wish.


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(@devonshire)
Main Sequence Star Customer
Joined: 5 years ago
Posts: 33
 
Posted by: @col

Yes there is a mask generation at least. After the star analysis step, you can go to the menu at the top where you chooe linear, calibrated etc. and the bottom option is star map. that gives you the star map for the star analysis section, so choose a high number to ensure you capture all, or a star analysis star count that will give you all the stars that you wish to mask. that images can be saved if you wish to blur it and use it as a star mask. As far as I know, it cannot be used within APP right now as a mask option, but it can in photoshop is you wish.

More information, please!  I have looked for this feature and been unable to find it.  While I would prefer to have star removal or masking within APP for Nebula work, even mask generation, for later use with GIMP would be helpful.

 


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(@col)
Red Giant Customer
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 117
 

Sure. Go to the top-centre of APP where you see the drop down menu (Linear (l), l-calibrated, l-c-normalised etc.) and select star map. do this after your stack or for a single sub when you first run the analyse Stars in Tab 3.


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(@devonshire)
Main Sequence Star Customer
Joined: 5 years ago
Posts: 33
 

Thanks, Colm

Found it - Wasnt't where I was expecting to see such a thing!

Doesn't look all that useful as a mask for downstream work, though. Most stars similarly sized, dots with a shaded donut around them. No diffraction (Newt) spikes, and this was on a straight stack. Then I looked at a processed, cropped image, and that was even more interesting. 🙂

More and more, I'm bumping into the need to process the stars and the Nebulas separately, and then put things back together.

 


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(@col)
Red Giant Customer
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 117
 

True, it can be useful as a starting mask for refractor/Mak-Newt/SCT and non-diffraction spike images, and tweaked for edge blur, size etc. as needed. I'm an OSC imager and never remove stars and mask them in-situ when doing other things. I tend to find that I am 'sensitive' to seeing the edge artefacts for separately processed stars no matter how well the backgrounds hav ebeen matched in the region around the stars. Narrowband is a bit more forgiving in that respect though. Anyway, wasn't it something else to check to pass away a cloudy night 🙂


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(@oopfan)
Red Giant Customer
Joined: 4 years ago
Posts: 109
 

Refractor user here. I don't see how I can save the star map. The "save" button does nothing when I have "star map" selected in the dropdown. Under the dropdown a file name is shown: "starmap-Melotte-14-RGB.fits" but I don't see it on my drive. I'm probably doing something stupid. I'll have to go back and see if there is a checkbox somewhere. I'm really not interested in the star map for each sub. I need the star map for the combined RGB image. It looks like I can view it but I can't save it.

I think it was Colm who mention that he was able to import it into Photoshop. I'm an Affinity Photo user. I want to see if I can do the same.

Thank you for any tips or hints. BTW, I'm using APP for MacOS, latest available version 1.083.2 which seems to be behind the other platforms.

Brian


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(@rdviii)
Molecular Cloud Customer
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
 

@oopfan did you resolve this problem? I'm seeing the same thing. For just an instant, some popup window seems to appear, but it last only a tiny fraction of a second and I can't read it. And then, no file.

FWIW, I'm on an M1 Mac, using 2.0.0-beta6. Same thing happens with beta2.

This post was modified 2 weeks ago by Rodney Van Meter

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(@oopfan)
Red Giant Customer
Joined: 4 years ago
Posts: 109
 

@rdviii Hi Rodney, still no resolution. Like you I'm also on beta6 since upgrading to MacOS Ventura. I'm looking into Astronomy Tools at ProDigital Software for possible solutions. I think that Mabula's todo list is full, so I'm looking for intermediate solutions. Good luck.


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(@rdviii)
Molecular Cloud Customer
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
 

Thanks for the reply.


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