Starry Landscape Stacker makes it possible to produce landscape photographs taken at night that have both low noise and stars rendered as points. It does this by compositing several images taken in rapid succession, shifting the sky as needed to align the stars. A free trial version is available on the developer's website.
The steps needed to make the mask for the sky should go more quickly now. Placement of the red dots in the sky is faster and better. Finding the mask is now faster and better. There are slightly different controls for placing red dots and finding the mask.
The composition algorithms have been changed. There is an option to control the trade-off between star duplication and noise at the boundary between sky and ground.
Alignment is faster, typically by about 20%. The alignment results are better when there are few visible stars or a lot of noise.
Variable zoom levels are now supported.
Other fixes and improvements.
Full details here: https://sites.google.com/site/starrylandscapestacker/new-in-version-1-7
Ratings and Reviews
I have used this only 2 times and it works flawlessly. My first attempt was with the Milky Way and mountains in the foreground. My second usage was with the Orion Nebula. I had phenomenal success with the Milky Way shot and am struggling with my Orion shot. I am quite sure my struggle with Orion is the pictures I’m dealing with, not this software. The difference in dark areas between a raw shot and using this software to combine 10 images is amazing. Snow fields are quite grainy in the individual shots, smooth as silk in the final output. Does exactly what I wanted it to do.
Works well and as advertised
I’ve used this program primarily for stacking astrophotography images taken with a telescope and it works very well. It’s rejection of satellites and airplane trails is particularly useful . The only limitation is it rejects image sets that are taken too many minutes apart but that can be worked around. The program improves with each update. Support is also useful and responsive the one time I asked for it.
How can you feather the paint brush when masking? The paint brush is set to the hardest edge possible and that makes masking a very time consuming and tedeous process. I saw in Ian Norman’s tutorial video that his brush was feathered and there is no obvious way to achieve that in the app.
Other than the paint brush feather issue this is a great app and very user friendly! I’ve achieved my best astro shots with the help of this app.
Developer Response ,
Thanks for your feedback. I am glad you have had success with it. I am not sure how Ian Norman's tutorial showed a feathered brush. SLS has never had a feathered brush. The edge of the mask has to have a hard edge--feathered alignment just does not work. I am not sure how having a feathered brush makes it easier to make a mask. Perhaps you could contact me directly and we can find a way to make masking easier for you. Launch Starry Landscape Stacker, and under "Help" in the menu bar select "Email Developer".
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.