an odd effect when photographing auroras on a ship

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You also have add in the crop factor for the sensor size of the camera. The example above uses a full frame camera. Those cameras have a crop factor of 1 to 1. Your Osmo uses a 1/2.3 sensor that has a crop factor of 1/5.62. So if your Osmo has a 20mm lens you are going to be around a 5 second shutter length before seeing star trails. 20mm X 5.62=112.4 , 500 divided by 112.4=4.45 seconds.
Thanks for the inputs. Due to the length of the artifacts, I don't believe they are due to the earth's rotation. I varied the exposure times between about 10 and 20 s. Maybe long enough for very short tracks, but I'm pretty sure it's due to camera movement. I'm going to get out one night soon and do some testing. I will report back.
 
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Man I don't see anything wrong with any of your pictures,I was mesmerized couldn't stop watching videos then watched the pictures they were so nice I could hear the wind and feel the cold you have one of the best jobs on earth!!Great Job!!
Thanks for the kind words. It is possible to obtain much higher quality images, but it's not so easy under those conditions. For a bird in flight, you have to keep the camera on it while trying to maintain your footing on an icy and moving deck, the bird may often fly out of view behind parts of the ship, spray gets on the camera lens, the light conditions are poor, the wind is howling. That's all part of being in the Arctic, and I love it, but it doesn't make photography easy!
 
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You may be a very skilled photographer. I did not say you weren’t. But because the light was very poor, and you were on a moving boat, you were not able to shoot at a fast enough speed to obtain the sharpness needed for a good picture. Wondering why you have star trails is silly! Of course you will have star trails. Of course the northern lights will be blurry! The stars are moving, you are moving. The northern lights are moving. A very difficult subject to shoot at the best of times.
 
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I obtained an Osmo+ for photographing auroras on a ship during a trip to the Arctic Ocean. Some of the photos are posted here. The auroras look pretty good, but there are star tracks. This seems contradictory -- how can there be star tracks (which indicate motion) if the gimbal remained still enough to produce good images of the auroras? I can think of only one possible explanation: when the exposure starts, there is briefly a little motion before the camera stabilizes, and this is sufficient for the relatively bright stars to produce tracks. If I go on another such trip, I might get someone to hold an obstructing screen in front of the lens and then move it just after I start the exposure.
where is the link to the photos?
 
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You may be a very skilled photographer. I did not say you weren’t. But because the light was very poor, and you were on a moving boat, you were not able to shoot at a fast enough speed to obtain the sharpness needed for a good picture. Wondering why you have star trails is silly! Of course you will have star trails. Of course the northern lights will be blurry! The stars are moving, you are moving. The northern lights are moving. A very difficult subject to shoot at the best of times.
You think my post is silly. I think your comments are silly. I don't care what you have to say. You don't care what I have to say. That's fine with me. So there is no need for you to continue to participate in this thread.

Now to set the record straight. It shouldn't matter that I wasn't able to hold the camera still under the conditions on that ship. The DJI Osmo+ should have taken care of it. But it didn't work exactly as it should have. The stars appear to move, but the aurora doesn't. There must be an explanation, but you haven't shed one photon of light on it.
 
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I obtained an Osmo+ for photographing auroras on a ship during a trip to the Arctic Ocean. Some of the photos are posted here.

Last word in above sentence.

The question was why the star trails with the Osmo? The other pictures are really not a concern. In fact the ice floe pics are cool.
 
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Just another thought. The more you are zoomed in, the more star trails would show up.
 
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I have an Osmo, not Osmo+, which I've often used to record time-lapse and long exposure.
Since the first, there has always been a notable slow wobble caused by the gimbal motors.
Where there is a breeze, the wobble can be accentuated; I find a wind break for the camera helps a little sometimes.
I've tried the calibrations, but the wobble has never been eliminated.
Only locking the gimbal will keep the camera completely stable; which obviously isn't ideal for a few reasons.

Not sure if your Osmo+ suffers the same, but it would be my first guess.

Now, when intending a timelapse, I just assume there will be wobble and do what I can to eliminate it with post image stabilization.

That may not be so easy to overcome with star trails on long exposures; where you could be suffering from both the wobble and the movement of the stars combined.

I'd suggest trying a shorter long exposure, with a higher ISO setting (just not too high) and perhaps combining the images after stabilizing in software.

I would really like to develop an app, in a similar vein of ActiveTrack, which introduces star tracking movement to the gimbal or perhaps just automatically moves the gimbal to counteract the Earth rotation. With a GPS location, this shouldn't be impossible - but it could only ever be as accurate as the Osmo and DJI's SDK allows.
 
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A gimbal will somewhat stabilize and smooth out movement, but it won't be rock solid. It doesn't allow the camera to lock onto a point in space while the rest of the world moves, spins and shakes. It's meant to create smooth movement. I just don't think the OP understands the limitations of a device like the Osmo, combined with a slow shutter speed, combined with a rocking boat, etc. etc. Not a good combination. I'm amazed that the photos came out as well as they did considering all of the factors. Basically, a gimbal is meant for videos and a tripod is meant for photographs. Neither works well for photos taken from a rolling ship.

The star trails (perfectly matched squiggles) are obviously due to camera shake that the Osmo could not react fast enough to and were bright enough to quickly burn into the image. The aurora is no doubt a bit blurry also, but was not a bright enough object for the quick shake to be obvious. Photoshop out the star trails and you wind up with decent photos of the aurora.
 
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I purchased the Osmo+ for a one-time application: photographing auroras from a ship, a moving platform that requires a gimbal for long exposures. I recently decided to brush the dust off and give it a try on Comet Neowise. I first tried holding it in my hand and pulling the trigger to activate the stabilization. The results were similar to the previous results on a ship. Star trails on most of the photos, but a few of them came out OK. Then I tried it on a tripod under ideal conditions. There was no wind, the sky was clear, and the comet was easily visible to the naked eye in a dark location. I used an iPad to take the photos so that there would be no disturbance. Still the same problem. I found discussions online of others having similar problems. The Osmo+ is a good device for certain applications, but it has serious problems when it comes to long exposures. It is very puzzling that this problem even occurs with a tripod. It has nothing to do with the Earth's rotation. The exposure times were not long enough for that to be a problem, and the motion isn't in the form of arcs around Polaris.
 

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