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..., it's full of Stars

Orbiter has a database of some 16000 bright stars. You now can have the most spectacular star fields ever in Orbiter. Follow these simple steps to achieve the most realistic looking night sky and be immersed in the most beautiful planet/star views.

1.) You will need to begin by calibrating your monitor. Most graphic artist recommend setting the monitor contrast all the way up to 100% and leaving it there. Then adjust your brightness levels down until you get the most pleasing colors from your favorite color photo. You can use the calibration bar below to help you set the brightness. Adjust brightness until you can just see all the squares. I like it best when you can barley, to not at all, differentiate between the two blackest ones. This will make your Orbiter night sky that deep space black.

2.) Open Launchpad and go to the Parameters tab. Under the Star Count section type in 9000 stars. I know Orbiter will display many more, but more is not always better. You may come back later when we are done and increase it if you like. I prefer a star count of 9000  for the most realistic feel.

3.) Set the Brightness to 0.90. You may fool with this too, but this is what I end up with.

4.) Contrast... Now this is the setting that pulls off the magic. Boost the contrast up to 4 .00 and your stars will sparkle like never before. This is the important key, because this separates the brightest stars from the rest. This will give that three dimensional feeling like your floating in space.

Note: These settings are for 1152X864 video resolution. If you are using lower screen resolutions lower the contrast to 2 or 1. Otherwise the bright stars will be too large and look unrealistic.

5.) Lastly, make a final moniter brightness adjustment while viewing the stars in Orbiter. Space should be deep black. Lower the brightness a tad and you'll find that the bright stars seem to be even brighter. Be careful not to snuff out the dimmer stars....enjoy!

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