Beta version

A quick reminder for those interested in playing around with the latest AutoStakkert!2 lucky imaging software: there is a beta version of AutoStakkert!2 available at the AutoStakkert!2 beta website

The versions displayed on that site have not been tested a lot, but it generally works quite well and has interesting functionality such as:

  • improved flat frame support
  • native support for mjpeg, ser, fits, and many avi videos and image files
  • extended support for additional video formats using windows codecs
  • additional mov support using FFMpeg
  • more speed (overall about 2X faster)
  • alt-az derotation
  • sigma clipping satcking
  • and many more…

And of course, all of these nicely hidden from view (but easily available) so if you just want an easy to use, fast and high quality lucky imaging stacking program, it is still there.

If you find any problems with a beta, please let me know so I can fix them. I’m currently using myself without any problems, but small updates are frequently performed that might brake or – preferably – improve the software further.

23 Replies to “Beta version”

  1. Hi Emil,
    Been using AS for a couple of years now. Very glad to see the field de-rotation feature in the latest beta version. I have a homebuilt 12.5 f8 truss Newt, too big for a movable GEM so I have an alt-az stepper driven mount on wheels.
    I am testing field derotation and will provide feedback. So far only trouble is measuring the single rotation angle using alt+left and alt+right, can’t get that to work, I must be doing something wrong. But I’m getting by without that feature but would like to use it.
    Best regards, Dave Polan

  2. Emil,
    Followup question: is there a way to save the video after derotation before stacking?

    Dave Polan

  3. I am trying to stack images 4k by 4k converted CR2 to TIF from a Canon 1100D, but your program keeps LOSING DATA; it clips off my moon full discs.

    I also see that your program has problems with Windows and the Start bar on the TOP of the desktop.

    So far I have tried Registax, biggest pile of shit ever, then I tried your program, amateur programming at it’s best only beaten to the award of worst programming skill ever by Registax.

    1. Hi Bob,

      Maybe you should write your own (freeware) lucky-imaging software instead of complaining about other peoples selfless efforts to give something to the astrophotography community. At the very least you should provide constructive criticism on bugs or potential new features, so that – when I have time – I can try to fix the problems, and also so other people can benefit from the improvements.

      Thank you,

    2. Ran into the same limit on frame size. I haven’t tried this but you might want to try this with your lunar images, but of course it will require 4 times the work. Use a program like PIPP convertor and export out four sections of your larger 4k file into separate quadrants of the image. Then use Autostakkert to stack each of the four quadrants, You have to have some overlap so it’s difficult to say if this would work. Then after getting each of the four slices processed using the same basic settings you can import the files in Registax for sharpening if you still use Registax for sharpening or use the COMP sharpened files if they are suitable. I like to use Autostakkert for stacking and Registax for sharpening.

      Save the setings in Registax (wavelet settings) and make sure any gamma settings if you use them are saved. Make sure the settings for each lunar sharpened and “Brightened and contrast settings” are duplicated for each slice of the moon.

      Then use some program like Photoshop to merge the four slices into one 4k image.

      It’s a lot of extra work because Autostakkert is limited to 2400 by 1800 but perhaps that’s the best we can hope for. . . after all Autostakkert is doing a lot of things and it causes a lot of CPU and resources to be utilized when it’s running on my quad core i7.

      When you think about it autostakkert is used mostly for planetary images which are smaller in size that large lunar images. I often use a Grasshopper 3 camera which is rather large 2k frames and get images of the moon in monochrome and do stacking in pieces anyways. With an ZWO ASI1600 color camera I get larger image sizes which are really a bit larger than 4k. Those images are quite large for Autostakkert. What I’ve done is convert the AVI files using PIPP to smaller sizes scaled to the 2400 width, which of course reduces the image quality but gives me a full moon at 2k. It’s a bit of a work around to get the higher 4k image, but I get better results with the smaller frame size and taking mosiacs with a 2k monochrome camera anyway. The 2k Point Grey Camera is pretty cool for lunar and planetary, I must say.

      In my case the ASI1600 will be used for wide field images and I end up using a different program for those wide field images. It’s a bit of a pain to be limited to 2k cameras with Autostakkert, maybe someday it will be upgraded, but require enormous computing resources of the PC to run.

      1. If you have plenty of RAM, the x64 version (available in a month or so, but you can try the 2.7.7) should be able to process it. And with plenty of RAM, I’m thinking about 16GB or preferably even 32GB+. It can use all of it. Stacking would still be slow, but it should work without crashes then.

    1. It allows the placement of the APs (only applicable when using ‘place APs in grid’) a bit closer to the edges between space and planet, which for Saturn is typically a good thing (e.g., the APs on the rings are often very stable, especially at intersections).

      It is experimental though, and I would always recommend manual placement of (a reasonable, typically small amount of) alignment points for the best results.

  4. Hi Emil. Not sure if youre still monitoring this. I’m using AS alpha and I cant understand why there are 4 boxes to enter the number of frames to stack?
    I’m sure I figured this out some time back but today I dont understand it!
    BTW thanks for the product – is the Beta better?

    1. I wasn’t checking this for some time, sorry.

      I would probably try the beta version, it is often better and more stable than older version. If you do run into trouble, just let me know, so I can try and fix it.

      There are 4 boxen to allow you to make 4 stacks in one go. This might be useful if you don’t beforehand how many frames exactly you want to stack, so you can simply enter more options. Typically I tend to just use one of them though, and leave the others empty.

  5. I keep getting the message “no valid files dropped” when trying to load my AVI’s. It doesn’t matter if I convert them straight to AVI or pre process them in PIPP to turn it to an AVI. Autostakkert just won’t accept my files. Any idea why?

    1. Which version are you using? Try the latest alpha/beta version of AS!2, might already fix things
      Also, what happens if you don’t drag and drop the files, but just open them regularly?
      Which OS do you use??

  6. Not sure if this is the best place to post thanks but thankyou for the 64-bit beta which is great! I a new to astro-imaging, bought my first camera an Altair IMAX178 which produces 6.3Mp images. I thought this would be great until I tried stacking them! AS2 32-bit just about managed, but the 64-bit was much quicker. So thanks!

    1. Hi Geoff,
      Glad to hear that the new beta x64 version works well! I hadn’t checked the site for comments recently, so sorry for the delay at getting back to you.

  7. I’m using the latest(?) x64 beta 3.0.14 with a ASI 174MM USB3 camera under Win10.
    The solar AVI can be quite large 5-6Gb.
    I notice that during Aquisition, after saving the AVI, occasionally the program hangs and locks up…
    I tried various things and found the only way to re-set was to un-plug the USB3 lead to the camera.
    No real idea if it’s AS! related or USB or my computer.

    1. Sounds like it’s related to the capture software, not AS!. But I can’t be sure.. Please provide some more details (maybe some screenshots when it happens, which recording software you use, what actually locks up, etc..)

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