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Canis Vulpes
14-05-06, 12:43
I had an attempt to photograph the moon on Thursday and decided to post the results with what I did.

At 21:30 or so I noticed the moon emerging from the East and set up my kit 200-400VR f4 with TC17E teleconverter to give 680mm at f6.3 placed on a tripod.

I left ISO 125 from a previous assignment, selected spot metering and snapped my first (below) using mirror lock up (MLU). I noticed it was soft and stopped the lens down progressively but did not yield sharpness. VR on the lens was turned off because of rock steady tripod and MLU combination.

Thoughts, Visibility was moderate (approx 10k) on the day in question and the moon was low in the sky. ISO 125 was a limiting factor to shutter speed even with MLU 1/20 or so was extremely low at 680mm.

Next time I shall use ISO 400 or greater, wait until moon is higher in sky which should negate some visibility induced softness and maybe use shorter focal length using TC14E teleconverter instead of TC17E.

Snowyowl
14-05-06, 13:50
Here's one I took the other night. It was just a quickie, handheld to catch the colour. The moon was low on the horizon and I thought the colour was extraordinarily rich. Being handheld it's not very sharp. I wish now that I had got out a tripod.

Canis Vulpes
14-05-06, 14:54
Beautiful colours, Dan. My shot had the moon around 25 degrees above horizon. The moon appeared yellow to the eye but white balance changes in RAW conversion made it white(er).

How high above the horizon was the moon in your Shot, Dan?

Don Hoey
14-05-06, 15:41
Thoughts, Visibility was moderate (approx 10k) on the day in question and the moon was low in the sky. ISO 125 was a limiting factor to shutter speed even with MLU 1/20 or so was extremely low at 680mm.

Next time I shall use ISO 400 or greater, wait until moon is higher in sky which should negate some visibility induced softness and maybe use shorter focal length using TC14E teleconverter instead of TC17E.

Also my first attempt. Not having a long lens I attached my camera to my scope. Giving a focal length of 1500mm. As this gives a fixed aperture of f13 I had to set the camera to ISO800 to get a shutter speed of 1/100sec. Time around 8:50. Sky just going dark. I do not have mirror up so had to use anti shock mode and the additional stabilty of a second tripod. I will take a picture to give you a laugh. :D

The problem is definately haze. I feel the air has to be clear to the horizon or it will impact on the final image.

Stevie looks at the stars and I keep searching for the Hasselblads left on the moon, hence the picture title. :D

Don

Snowyowl
14-05-06, 17:33
Beautiful colours, Dan. My shot had the moon around 25 degrees above horizon. The moon appeared yellow to the eye but white balance changes in RAW conversion made it white(er).

How high above the horizon was the moon in your Shot, Dan?
It's really a false horizon. By that I mean that the ground rises as it stretches towards the road. The moon was about 15 degrees above the top of the rise.
If it's the same colour tonight I'll probably try again using a tripod.

Snowyowl
14-05-06, 17:35
Nice job, Don.

Canis Vulpes
14-05-06, 17:55
During a search I found this website (below), looks useful when planning a moon photo. Note the section titled 'Moon Visibility'

http://home.hiwaay.net/~krcool/Astro/moon/moonphase/

yelvertoft
14-05-06, 18:24
Done a few moon pics over the last year or so, using digiscoping technique just like Don. I'd agree that have seens to be a major limiting factor.

Phase of the moon is important. A full moon really doesn't work, it's too bright and flat and there's no texture to the surface. Wait a couple of days until the light is more angled across the moon and this will pick up the surface textures much better.

Here's a couple of my better examples.

Duncan

Don Hoey
14-05-06, 18:56
Well here it is. :D

Nikon ED82A scope with FSA-L1 adaptor. The scope is naturally quite tail heavy so adding the camera then pointing it all skywards makes it worse. As the moon is moving, the camera body is only resting on the ballhead plate. Even though it is quite hefty, the 501 head gives a bit much twang with this angle of operation.

The riflescope gives a 4x dead on finder as it has fine cross hairs.

Don

Leif
14-05-06, 19:20
This might be obvious to everyone, but even if you have a rock steady tripod, there is a limit to how much detail you can obtain with an unguided camera and lens, for the simple reason that the moon moves relative to the Earth. To get critical sharpness, you need a driven mounting (termed an equatorial mounting) that compensates for the Earth's rotation. (The motion of the moon relative to the stars is small relative to the motion of the stars.) One way to improve sharpness without using a driven mounting is to increase the film/sensor ISO to allow shorter exposures. (I've not done the numbers to work out what you can get away with.)

As an aside, many people think that the best time to photograph the moon is when it is full i.e. fully illuminated. That is not really true, as most of the detail is washed out, since the light hits the moon head on, and there are no shadows. More detail is seen when the moon is a crescent as seen in Don's photo. In the region between the light and dark areas, shadows pick out numerous craters, otherwise invisible in a full moon image. I've seen composite pictures of the moon made by combining photos taken at various phases, so as to show craters over the entire surface, and not just at the terminator.

Leif

Canis Vulpes
14-05-06, 19:57
This might be obvious to everyone, but even if you have a rock steady tripod, there is a limit to how much detail you can obtain with an unguided camera and lens, for the simple reason that the moon moves relative to the Earth. To get critical sharpness, you need a driven mounting (termed an equatorial mounting) that compensates for the Earth's rotation. (The motion of the moon relative to the stars is small relative to the motion of the stars.) One way to improve sharpness without using a driven mounting is to increase the film/sensor ISO to allow shorter exposures. (I've not done the numbers to work out what you can get away with.)

As an aside, many people think that the best time to photograph the moon is when it is full i.e. fully illuminated. That is not really true, as most of the detail is washed out, since the light hits the moon head on, and there are no shadows. More detail is seen when the moon is a crescent as seen in Don's photo. In the region between the light and dark areas, shadows pick out numerous craters, otherwise invisible in a full moon image. I've seen composite pictures of the moon made by combining photos taken at various phases, so as to show craters over the entire surface, and not just at the terminator.

Leif

This makes a lot of sense and explains why I failed to get a sharper image by stopping down the lens. I noticed the moon moving remarkably fast needing camera and lens reposition every shot, 40-50 seconds or so. I predict 1/100 at ISO400 f6.3 is realistic for my next attempt.

Andy
14-05-06, 20:08
Yep, the speed of the moon is quite amazing, you're constantly having to move with it's arc. I prefer a minimum of 1/125 sec at around f8.

As has been said and common to all long distance photography, but even more important here, the atmospheric polutants play a big part in a sharp image.

I'd also forget about trying to shoot 'big moons' that are low to the horizon, they pick up even more astmospheric rubbish.

Here's my favourite, when I (o.k. accidentally) got a airliner across the moon. In fact it's amazing how often you do see aircraft and birds crossing the face of the moon at night.

Don Hoey
14-05-06, 20:34
Thats a cracking image Andy.

Just rummaging through Stevies Astronomy links and found this Moon calender.
http://www.paulcarlisle.net/old/MoonCalendar.html

Don

Torpedo
14-05-06, 22:11
Here's one I took late last year.
Canon 20D + 100-400mm L IS, f/8, 1/250s, ISO 100, MLU, tripod.
It's a 100% crop, and has been sharpened. From what I rememember, the moon was quite high in the sky.
http://www.sypix.co.uk/gallery/albums/userpics/10001/moon17112005.jpg

Don Hoey
14-05-06, 22:28
Here's one I took late last year.
Canon 20D + 100-400mm L IS, f/8, 1/250s, ISO 100, MLU, tripod.
It's a 100% crop, and has been sharpened. From what I rememember, the moon was quite high in the sky.


This has really surprised me not being a long lens owner. Very impressive for 400mm.

Don

Canis Vulpes
16-05-06, 18:52
I'd also forget about trying to shoot 'big moons' that are low to the horizon, they pick up even more astmospheric rubbish.

Here's my favourite, when I (o.k. accidentally) got a airliner across the moon. In fact it's amazing how often you do see aircraft and birds crossing the face of the moon at night.

Most of that atmospheric rubbish is moisture drawn in from the oceans however an East wind does bring pollution from the European continent. Here is my pic with one of those airliner thingies spoiling an otherwise top moon shot :D .

Seriously it does show a big moon about 35 degrees above the horizon.

Canis Vulpes
16-05-06, 18:55
Here's one I took late last year.
Canon 20D + 100-400mm L IS, f/8, 1/250s, ISO 100, MLU, tripod.
It's a 100% crop, and has been sharpened. From what I rememember, the moon was quite high in the sky.
http://www.sypix.co.uk/gallery/albums/userpics/10001/moon17112005.jpg

Brilliant, it must have been bright to realise 1/250 f8 at ISO100. It seems shutter speed is the key to a sharp photo

Canis Vulpes
02-06-06, 16:31
If anyone is interested in having an attempt of photographing the moon. The weather forecast tonight in the United Kingdom is for clear skies, low humidity and the moon will be showing in the first quarter stage (almost half moon).

Saphire
02-06-06, 16:57
Thanks Stephen, I will have to give it a go and see if I can get better shots than I already have. The good weather is down to me I ordered it for the wedding Sunday.:D

John
02-06-06, 19:15
Christine,
It might be my tripod but after a series of tests I found that I needed 1/250 s to produce sharp images. The test shots were of a brick wall at about 40 m with the tripod legs fully extended and the centre column down. MLU was not employed. The focal length was 400 mm, crop factor 1.6 and enlarements to A4.

By the way here is another moon shot.

John

Don Hoey
02-06-06, 21:15
If anyone is interested in having an attempt of photographing the moon. The weather forecast tonight in the United Kingdom is for clear skies, low humidity and the moon will be showing in the first quarter stage (almost half moon).

Thin high cloud here. Through the scope it gets quite soft by 50x. I'll give it a go tomorrow.

Don

Saphire
02-06-06, 22:10
Well I had a go. The first one was done with 1/200s, F8, ISO 100 MLU.
2nd one 1/250s, F8, ISO 400, MLU. I probably should wait untill its dark but couldn't resist trying.

John
02-06-06, 23:00
Well I had a go. The first one was done with 1/200s, F8, ISO 100 MLU.
2nd one 1/250s, F8, ISO 400, MLU. I probably should wait untill its dark but couldn't resist trying.

They seem nice and sharp to me. Which lens and focal length?

John.

Saphire
02-06-06, 23:15
Sorry John I forgot it ls in attachments. its was a Sigma 170-500mm. 400mm.

Canis Vulpes
03-06-06, 07:55
Thanks Stephen, I will have to give it a go and see if I can get better shots than I already have. The good weather is down to me I ordered it for the wedding Sunday.:D

Glad you are giving it a go and thanks for the weather dancing you have been doing, it seems to have paid off :cool:

Here is my second real attempt, 680mm f6.7 (lens f4) 1/160 ISO400. As the subject was smaller then my previous attempt I had problems with focus and metering. At one point I set ISO 1600 and showed a huge difference, from 1/400 to 1/1600. I may fool around with the spot metering circle size in my camera or use manual exposure in future. Image taken between 21:15 and 21:30. Interesting how the view differs from Saphire's shot taken at roughly the same time even though we live approx 50 miles East/West of each other.

I now seem to have reasonable sharpness and I shall pursue to moon another time using approx 500mm focal length.

Leif
03-06-06, 09:39
Well I had a go. The first one was done with 1/200s, F8, ISO 100 MLU.
2nd one 1/250s, F8, ISO 400, MLU. I probably should wait untill its dark but couldn't resist trying.

Good images. I was tempted to take out the bins and scope last night, and drive to a dark area, but laziness prevailed. At 10pm it was still not dark. I suppose that is not surprising since we are close to the Summer Solstice. At least we do not live in Finland. Sadly clear nights are a rarity here in Southern England, though I have noticed that the mornings are often cloud free. Maybe a weather wonk can explain why.

Leif

robski
03-06-06, 10:07
Yes the south has seen a bit of a nuclear winter with all the cloud cover for the past few weeks. I can't believe that in a few weeks time the evenings will start to draw in again. New wildlife seems to taken a hit with this cold period. But today makes up for it. Lets hope we get a clear sky to night and I see if I can get a crack at it.

prostie1200
05-06-06, 21:03
Took this one at 2100 tonight - bit of cloud but quite pleased with it.

D70 - TC1.7 + afs300 f4 ISO 200 f26 at 1/125

Don Hoey
30-06-06, 23:02
I have just been dragged out to try a D2X version, but after setting everything up the current moon is a NO GO. With the scope I am limited to f13, and at ISO800 that is 1/8th sec. Will have to wait until its brighter. :( Also it is quite low so is suffering from atmospheric haze.

Don

Don Hoey
04-07-06, 22:06
Finally just about bright enough last night, at 1/80 sec at f13 at ISO800 taken through my Nikon ED82A scope with the D2X. When using the scope I am limited to a single aperture of f13 which is seriously limiting as well as being on my diffraction boundry.

As I am still waiting for my remote, I cobbled something up to allow use of a cable release. I have remade it today, and will post a pic tomorrow when the paint is dry. :)

Don

Tannin
05-07-06, 23:12
Here is a different approach: why wait until dark?

No need for a tripod if you get the shutter speed up: 20D, 500 f/4 and Canon 1.4TC, ISO 200, wide open at f/5.6, a 1500th, hand-held, Lake Mungo, outback New South Wales, taken just after sunrise.

Don Hoey
06-07-06, 20:57
Nice one Tannin, and a well different approach.

Its OK for you guys with long lenses. :)

With my scope I am limited to f13 and trying to focus is a nightmare. :(

Don

Andy
18-07-06, 11:28
Here's one from last night. 300mm + 1.4x tc, handheld 1/80th @ f8, ISO250
I can't remember taking a shot of the moon in this particular phase before.

Canis Vulpes
18-07-06, 11:34
Here's one from last night. 300mm + 1.4x tc, handheld 1/80th @ f8, ISO250
I can't remember taking a shot of the moon in this particular phase before.

Thats one top shot using 420mm at 1/80 - respect to you.

Andy
18-07-06, 11:40
Thats one top shot using 420mm at 1/80 - respect to you.

Cheers, Stephen. It surprised me as well... I'm a great photographer at 3.30am, it's the rest of the day when it all goes pear shaped :D

Don Hoey
18-07-06, 14:50
Here's one from last night. 300mm + 1.4x tc, handheld 1/80th @ f8, ISO250


Amazing shot Andy. I did a double take over the handheld bit.

Don

yelvertoft
18-07-06, 18:51
300mm + 1.4x tc, handheld 1/80th

:eek:

You should see a doctor about those stiff joints.

That's quite some technique you've got there.

bazz
29-08-06, 16:09
Great thread Stephen deserves bumping.Excellent shots guys the moon is a good test for your equipment.I use the good old CP4500,just screw in eyepiece and slide into telescope -easy,pitty the LCD wasnt bigger tho sometimes it's hard to tell if its in focus & you don't find out till you download onto computer .First shot is one of those, would have trashed it but decided to give it a face lift in Photoshop.You can really pile on the sharpening with a full moon (second shot) and ajusting in levels helps heaps . In the last shot iv'e converted to gray scale,this gets rid of colour fringing and added a few sign posts of the more famous landmarks.At present i think moons coming up to quarter so keep those shots coming:D

Canis Vulpes
06-09-06, 15:35
Well time flys and I cannot seem to keep up the Moons cycle. I was reminded of a decent moon by Nick R's photo.

http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery//showphoto.php?photo=9065

So if anyone wishes to photograph the Moon then the next few days should be good. In the United Kingdon weather forecast looks like good clear skies also.

Please see moon phase calender for further information
http://www.shetline.com/java/moonphase/moonphase.html

Don Hoey
06-09-06, 21:00
Well I did try last night. My outfit for such occasions is a bit cumbersome. See post 9.

The scope gives a fixed aperture of f13 which makes focussing a bit tricky to say the least. The scope does not have a fine focus control and in this level of light viewfinder focus confirmation does not work. Focussing is a bit of a nightmare

So the whole thing is a bit hit and miss & I thought this a bit soft. By the time I had looked at this on the pc, shifted position onto the patio, a more stable surface, and set up again the moon dissapeared behind cloud. Waited for over an hour after that then gave up. :(

Focus is not dead on so I have added rather a lot of usm to compensate.

Taken at ISO400 1/125sec at f13. Exposure increased by 1EV in NX raw conversion.

Don

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 09:31
Yesterday was 10/10 cloud from 6pm onwards, so no further opportunity there.
Higher hopes for tonight, but I have just run the cloud sequence on the BBC weather site, and once again it does not look good for Norfolk UK. :( :(

Don

Canis Vulpes
07-09-06, 10:17
Yesterday was 10/10 cloud from 6pm onwards, so no further opportunity there.
Higher hopes for tonight, but I have just run the cloud sequence on the BBC weather site, and once again it does not look good for Norfolk UK. :( :(

Don

Similar situation in Castle Donington, we had drizzle by 6pm although bright sunny conditions all day. I was hoping to emulate Andy's low shutter hand held technique. i live in hope for this evening.

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 10:53
BBC weather cloud predictions are looking good for you tonight Foxy. If you manage it the view should be very similar to Johns pic in post 20. Bazz's suggestion of converting to B&W helped with my soft shot so I will use that technique next time.


I was hoping to emulate Andy's low shutter hand held technique. i live in hope for this evening.

Suffering from stiff joints as well then :D :D

Don

NickR
07-09-06, 22:54
Well time flys and I cannot seem to keep up the Moons cycle. I was reminded of a decent moon by Nick R's photo.

http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery//showphoto.php?photo=9065

So if anyone wishes to photograph the Moon then the next few days should be good. In the United Kingdon weather forecast looks like good clear skies also.

Please see moon phase calender for further information
http://www.shetline.com/java/moonphase/moonphase.html
Stephen

Just shot this full moon tonight, did a lot of head scratching. I was not that pleased with this one.:-

http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9096&cat=500&ppuser=146

Cheers

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 22:57
A quick one from this evening. The moon was in partial eclipse - earths shadow. Picture taken at 20:08 this evening.

As usual if you are in a rush to post, image editing progs decide on a ' GO SLOW ' . :(

Bit of a rush job as I saw this by accident so no time to set scope/camera up properly, ie no remote release, as I did not know how long it would last.

I will post some more tomorrow.

Don

Bish
07-09-06, 23:04
Here's a couple of shots I took this evening with Canon 30D + 100-400mm ISO100 f8 1/320 400mm

A bit disappointed with them :(

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 23:13
Nick and Bish,

I think use of curves can improve both of these. I will look tomorrow as I have had to sign in more times than that in the last 20 mins. :confused:

I did look at yours Nick, Bish posted while I was in the gallery. Curves will give an improvement ( improve contrast ). I notice you used f16 but I don't think you need any more than f8 with your lens.

Don

NickR
07-09-06, 23:17
Here's a couple of shots I took this evening with Canon 30D + 100-400mm ISO100 f8 1/320 400mm

A bit disappointed with them :(

Very good shots, mine were very similar to yours, its a pity the craters do not stand out, I guess that is because there are no shadows???

http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9096&cat=500&ppuser=146

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 23:34
Very good shots, mine were very similar to yours, its a pity the craters do not stand out, I guess that is because there are no shadows???

http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=9096&cat=500&ppuser=146

Pictures of a full moon always lack that bit of detail.

Bish, I have done a very quick curves job on one of yours to give an idea, attached. Nick I will have to relook at yours as my image editor will not open the file. :confused:

Don

NickR
07-09-06, 23:45
Pictures of a full moon always lack that bit of detail.

Bish, I have done a very quick curves job on one of yours to give an idea, attached. Nick I will have to relook at yours as my image editor will not open the file. :confused:

Don

Don, that looks a lot better, I think the reason why you cannot open my file is because I converted it to greyscale? I will post another to my gallery without editing. I'll try and find another shoot with a larger F stop.

Cheers

Don Hoey
07-09-06, 23:54
Don, that looks a lot better, I think the reason why you cannot open my file is because I converted it to greyscale? I will post another to my gallery without editing. I'll try and find another shoot with a larger F stop.

Cheers

I did have another go Nick. I can open in Paint Shop Pro 8 but no histogram and limited functions. :(

I will keep an eye open for your next pic.

Don

NickR
08-09-06, 00:15
I did have another go Nick. I can open in Paint Shop Pro 8 but no histogram and limited functions. :(

I will keep an eye open for your next pic.

Don
Don, Just uploaded an F8 shot which I got from a 9 shot bracket,

Cheers

Canis Vulpes
08-09-06, 07:48
The purpose of yesterday was to experiment with handheld and was surprisingly easy. I shot this one quite early after one or two others. After a short break I noticed something flying across the moon so grabbed the camera, pointed and hoped, I am kind of pleased with this one.

Camera and lens (200-400 at 400mm) f4, 1/400 ISO 250 Matrix metering -0.7EV RAW

NX converted to B&W cropped then sharpened in PS.

I confess to living near an airport but I do not recall one taking off and if so would have turned out to South so I am not sure where the aeroplane came as the moon was near due East, aeroplane would have to turned to the North the pass the moon. The aeroplane appears to be a boring 737.

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 11:32
Nick,

I have done a little job on your image. Not sure if you or Bish have used curves before so I have attatched a graphic. There is a thread on this in the Digital Darkroom.

The attatched image was done in NX where I also converted to B&W. The snag with the moon in this phase is as you commented the lack of shadow detail. So B&W was used as a way of increasing contrast to try and bring out detail. Now that the moon is starting to wane, over the period 9th to 14th September ( last quarter ) this is the time to catch more detail.

Note to Admin. If this works problem SOLVED :)

Don

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 12:16
Here is something to put our humble efforts into perspective.

Stevie does a bit of star gazing using her birding scope, and so gets a couple of monthly magazines. In the readers gallery of one of her latest is a full page well detailed image of the moon about 1/2 phase.

Quote " The moon is a difficult subject for astronomers because of the low contast among its surface features. This 42-image mosaic captures the full face in great detail. ( 9.25 inch Celestron Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope at f10, ToUcam Pro webcam. For each of the 42 images, the imager selected and stacked the best 20-30 frames out of 500. ) "

My reading of this suggests then that the final composite is made up from the best of 21,000 frames. :eek:

Don

Mick V
08-09-06, 12:50
Only just seen this thread, very interesting.
Take a look at a shot i took with my D70 using a 80-400 vr Teleplus 2x converter 1/160 @ F/5.6 ISO200 hand held.
http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/data/503/DSC5140c.jpg

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 17:36
Only just seen this thread, very interesting.
Take a look at a shot i took with my D70 using a 80-400 vr Teleplus 2x converter 1/160 @ F/5.6 ISO200 hand held.


Very impressive Mick. Are you sure you need the monopod in your avatar ? :D

There must be something about Nikon and siezed joints.

I have not circumbed yet and have to rely on a heavy tripod. I'll blame my eyes for the rest. :)

Don

Bish
08-09-06, 17:39
Nick,

I have done a little job on your image. Not sure if you or Bish have used curves before so I have attatched a graphic. There is a thread on this in the Digital Darkroom.

The attatched image was done in NX where I also converted to B&W. The snag with the moon in this phase is as you commented the lack of shadow detail. So B&W was used as a way of increasing contrast to try and bring out detail. Now that the moon is starting to wane, over the period 9th to 14th September ( last quarter ) this is the time to catch more detail.

Note to Admin. If this works problem SOLVED :)

Don


Thanks for the info on curves Don, I haven't used them before but followed your advice with this image in Lightroom which has improved it a bit, also converted to B&W, I will try some more shots as the moon wanes.

Regards Bish. :)

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 17:40
Here is a composite from yesterday for those that missed it.

Don

NickR
08-09-06, 17:46
Nick,

I have done a little job on your image. Not sure if you or Bish have used curves before so I have attatched a graphic. There is a thread on this in the Digital Darkroom.

The attatched image was done in NX where I also converted to B&W. The snag with the moon in this phase is as you commented the lack of shadow detail. So B&W was used as a way of increasing contrast to try and bring out detail. Now that the moon is starting to wane, over the period 9th to 14th September ( last quarter ) this is the time to catch more detail.

Note to Admin. If this works problem SOLVED :)

Don
Don,

Thanks for your efforts and advice, its amazing what you can do with a little curve adjustment, I will have another go tonight and if I need to will mess around with curves. I have tried USM which does seem to help bring out the shadow a bit but the downside for me is I get a thin halo round the moon.

Cheers

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 22:07
Tonights experiment to compare an image through a scope and an old 300mm f4.5 AIS lens.

This lens long discontinued, was never the sharpest pencil in Nikons box. In fact on a D2X sensor it is best described as soft. So I thought it would make a suitable candidate to try. Also it is the longest lens I have. I dont have a TC to put on the 80-200 or that would be a different story.

Compared to using the scope it was a delight to focus. The posted image is a full frame crop so not a huge magnification. Curves and conversion to B&W were used along with a fair amount of usm.

ISO200, 1/160sec @ f8.

Don

NickR
08-09-06, 22:19
Hi Don, I see what you mean about the moon phase, the shadows are now appearing. This is my latest effort.
1/320, f/6.3, ISO100, curves and B&W little sharpening.

Andy
08-09-06, 22:40
We're all at it tonight... tragic isn't it? ;)
I put the the 1.7x teleconverter on the 300mm tonight. And for anyone who is interested by the magnification difference a 1.7x is over a 1.4x on a 300mm lens... it's your lucky night ;)

Andy
08-09-06, 22:58
May as well do it properly, with the bare 300mm as well. This is how large they are in the frame. And no, I won't be getting the 600 out tonight ;)

EDIT... found a 600+1.4x shot for comparison, so now added to the scale line-up. In the past, when-ever I've been upgrading focal length on lenses, I was always keen to see direct comparison to see how much difference it makes, so maybe this will help others decide the worth of more focal length.

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 23:05
I can't compete with that Andy. Superb job. Yours are a challenge for Foxy Bob.

After my earlier meagre offering I have had a rummage in the loft ( nothing better to do ) and found what I thought I had. An 1980's Teleplus 2X converter. Stuck this on the 300 and here is the result.

Don

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 23:31
Hi Don, I see what you mean about the moon phase, the shadows are now appearing. This is my latest effort.
1/320, f/6.3, ISO100, curves and B&W little sharpening.

Nick,

Good effort. My 2 from tonight were f8 and I reckon you could safely reduce shutter speed to get there.

I would suggest a slightly lighter touch on curves ( but that's personal ) and trust me you can add lots of usm. I used a radius of 0.4 and gave it loads. Then if you resize try a radius of 1.0 and give it a touch. ( This is bound to be contraversial among the no sharpness guys ) Keeping the ISO down as much as possible is a good plot and you bettered me there. Mine were ISO200 at 1/160 sec f8.


Don

robski
08-09-06, 23:42
So have I got to trade in my x1.4 for a x2 tomorrow ? :rolleyes:

Don Hoey
08-09-06, 23:52
So have I got to trade in my x1.4 for a x2 tomorrow ? :rolleyes:

Rob,

It was your gallery pic that made me do my trial tonight. I noticed the focal length.

I don't think we can compete with Andy and Foxy on the glass front.
You keep your 1.4 and I won't bin the teleplus. :)

I see you have well and truely joined us crazies here, 2 moon pics !! :D :D

Don

NickR
09-09-06, 00:26
May as well do it properly, with the bare 300mm as well. This is how large they are in the frame. And no, I won't be getting the 600 out tonight ;)

EDIT... found a 600+1.4x shot for comparison, so now added to the scale line-up. In the past, when-ever I've been upgrading focal length on lenses, I was always keen to see direct comparison to see how much difference it makes, so maybe this will help others decide the worth of more focal length.

Hi Andy, It would be good to see all images the same size (cropped) to see how the TC effect the image quality, I guess it could be possible to get a better shot the same size without a TC? Or is magnification everything shooting moon shots?

Cheers

Saphire
09-09-06, 09:46
Nice set of examples Andy. Size really does make a difference.

Andy
09-09-06, 11:10
Hi Andy, It would be good to see all images the same size (cropped) to see how the TC effect the image quality, I guess it could be possible to get a better shot the same size without a TC? Or is magnification everything shooting moon shots?

Cheers

All things being equal, adding teleconverters does reveal more detail.. But, and its a big but, the problems of extra focal length and adding more glass creates it's own problems that can diminish the detail.

cheers,
Andy

Bish
09-09-06, 22:57
Here's one from tonight, What a difference a few days make to the amount of detail visible

400mm f8 1/200th ISO-200

Regards Bish. :D

NickR
09-09-06, 22:58
This is tonight's effort, 3rd shot taken. I'm getting the hang of this!:)

Edited it PS, used auto curves, little sharpening and B&W.

Don Hoey
10-09-06, 12:39
Two impressive pics Nick & Bish. I have just done a mod on the old 2x TC so it will go on my 80-200ED f2.8 Nikkor.

If this afternoons tests are reasonable I will have a go with this tonight.

Don

Canis Vulpes
30-09-06, 08:05
Here is an interesting article from NASA about moonlight and the eye.

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2006/28sep_strangemoonlight.htm?list68516

yelvertoft
01-10-06, 10:00
Here is an interesting article from NASA about moonlight and the eye.

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2006/28sep_strangemoonlight.htm?list68516

Thanks for that link Stephen, very interesting.

Don Hoey
02-10-06, 21:41
Here is an interesting article from NASA about moonlight and the eye.




You post this Foxy and I spend 2 whole evenings trying for something a bit different. :p

So after many hours the result is in the gallery.

Don

Don Hoey
03-10-06, 21:19
Following my gallery post of Moon, Clouds and a Reflection I thought I would post a bit of an explanation for anyone else considering trying it.

For me the most striking effect on the long exposure background was the ghost reflection. Sassan has probably correctly attributed this to a reflection from the filter. In this case a Nikon L1A. Until the total cloud cover we now have goes, I cannot check this out. I have attached a composite of 2 images taken immediately one after the other but with a slight change of moon, re-positioning in the frame. It was fairly windy and the degree of cloud move is quite obvious when comparing the 2 shots.

Also attached is a composite showing the two images used in making the final. The most obvious thing to note is the exposure difference - 8 stops. The moon itself on the background exposure is totally burnt out and part of the shadow area is recorded. A problem with the long exposure required to get some detail in visible clouds is that high ice cloud, if present, will also be recorded. Fine for a nice effect but unless you are a digital darkroom wizard it does present problems when combining two images. The problem to be overcome is shown well in the ' Moon Move Overlay ' image.

The overlay of the 2 images shows the degree of movement by the moon during the 1 sec exposure. The overlay was lined up with the rear visible detail. To arrive at the final image the perfectly exposed moon was brightened to not look stuck on, and size increased to 105%. Although at this size in the final shot there appears to be a bright ring around the edge of the moon, when viewed at 300% there is detail almost to the edge allbeit faily bright. Shrinking the image has lost this. Merging the two together at this point with the clone brush took well over an hour as the final edge had to be blurred and not sharp. CA at the bottom of the moon was left in as to have removed that would probbly have taken another hour or more. Something I will do at a later date.

Lessons learnt for a future go is to take the cloud exposure and the final moon shot within 10 minutes of each other. As the sun moves so does the angle of the visible edge section of the moon. Unless the moon itself in the base exposure is in clear black sky there will be problems combining the images. I failed to do that on my first trial on Saturday night.

Stevie advises me that if the conditions are good we should have a Harvest Moon between 4 - 7th October. The moon will be full on the 7th.

Don

Don Hoey
08-10-06, 23:54
At the moment the moon is displaying a particularly high level of detail. Particularly good if you have a scope.

This is this evenings effort with 300mm f4.5 AIS Nikkor ( not by a long chalk, the sharpest pencil in Nikons box ) and 2x pretty rubbish converter, taken through high hazy cloud. ISO200, 1/100sec at f6.7.

Don

Canis Vulpes
09-10-06, 17:13
I noticed yesterday evening travelling on a motorway a glorious harvest moon on the horizon at 19:00 (approx). Weather forecast for this evening is clear and with excellent visibility, it might be one of the best opportunities to photograph the harvest moon in years.

Canis Vulpes
09-10-06, 17:15
At the moment the moon is displaying a particularly high level of detail. Particularly good if you have a scope.

This is this evenings effort with 300mm f4.5 AIS Nikkor ( not by a long chalk, the sharpest pencil in Nikons box ) and 2x pretty rubbish converter, taken through high hazy cloud. ISO200, 1/100sec at f6.7.

Don

Don,

I would not describe your photo as an 'effort' its more of a success. Exposure is on the nail and moon highly detailed. I have yet to produce anything close.

Don Hoey
09-10-06, 21:01
I noticed yesterday evening travelling on a motorway a glorious harvest moon on the horizon at 19:00 (approx). Weather forecast for this evening is clear and with excellent visibility, it might be one of the best opportunities to photograph the harvest moon in years.

Unfortunately 10/10 cloud here ( Norfolk ) at the moment.

If you are interested and have a clear view, then based on yesterdays experience it is certainly worth a go. Best detail views I have had of a nearly full moon in a long time. Usually too bright with a scope at 38x magnification to see much surface detail.

Don

Don Hoey
09-10-06, 21:06
Moon and cloud possibilities now so got to go. :)

Don

Canis Vulpes
31-10-06, 12:38
I notice the forecast is good for photographing the moon over the next few days in the United Kingdom - clear skies with good visibility.

Don Hoey
31-10-06, 21:46
I notice the forecast is good for photographing the moon over the next few days in the United Kingdom - clear skies with good visibility.

I have just been out for a look and it is a good one. A lot colder than it has been of late, but I think I will give it a go now as forecast is for it getting a lot colder over the next few days.

Don

Don Hoey
31-10-06, 22:47
2nd attempt at this.

Ok I have been out and here is a quick pic. A bit nippy out there, cap and gloves next time.:)

Taken with a 300mm lens and pretty poor 2x converter.

I notice from Stevies astronomy mags that most of the published stuff is made up from a seriously large number of stacked images. Any clues as to how this may be done in CS with say 3 or so. It may help make up for the lack of quality glass.

You will be the death of me Foxy.:D

Don

Canis Vulpes
01-11-06, 20:39
You will be the death of me Foxy.:D

Don

All good Fun!!

Like a fool I decided not to photograph the moon yesterday evening instead processing other photos (huge backlog). I thought I would set time aside this evening (01.11.06) and do a proper job without time constraints. Unfortunately in my location we have 100% cloud cover! Weather outlook appears promising for the next 5 or so days so hope to catch my death of cold :D sometime soon.

Don Hoey
01-11-06, 22:24
All good Fun!!

Unfortunately in my location we have 100% cloud cover! Weather outlook appears promising for the next 5 or so days so hope to catch my death of cold :D sometime soon.

Foxy Bob,

As you missed it tonight here is what it looks like today.

When you get your sharp glass on it your results should be better than mine. :D

As I am all day in the workshop, with no time to study my CS manual, I have resorted to loads of usm to try to make up for deficiencies on the lens front.

Don

NickR
05-11-06, 21:16
I could not resist taking another moon shot, it was so big and bright I had to take it. I will try later in the week when I should get more shadow around the craters?

Don Hoey
09-11-06, 22:32
First day without fog for a bit, so following Tannins lead, I took a shot of the moon in daylight.

Don

sassan
11-11-06, 06:03
Nice one Don. Good detail. The magnificent blue sky is superb.
You know my over sharpen taste, so my wish is a tad or sharpening in pp and then decrease in brightness a bit. Blue sky is tough. Well done.

Don Hoey
12-11-06, 00:43
Nice one Don. Good detail. The magnificent blue sky is superb.
You know my over sharpen taste, so my wish is a tad or sharpening in pp and then decrease in brightness a bit. Blue sky is tough. Well done.

Thanks Sassan,

20 year old lens and coke bottle converter so not up to your glass. :)
Quite different doing a daylight shot as contrast of the moons surface is a lot less than at night.

Will try to do a bit better next time round MASTER.

Don

Canis Vulpes
08-12-06, 11:40
I have noticed the moon over the last few days while I have been otherwise engaged. I also checked tonights weather forecast which shows clear skies. It looks a good opportunity later for anyone in the U.K. to have a crack at photographing the moon.

ollieholmes
08-12-06, 19:55
I may have a go tonight providing a freind brings his telescope, results coming Sunday.

Canis Vulpes
13-12-06, 20:32
I found this on another forum and thought it might be of interest here.

The Geminid shower is coming up and is considered the most consistent and viewable meteor shower - probably the best shower for photography as the trails move more slowly across the sky:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geminids (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geminids)

Don Hoey
29-01-07, 21:20
Not quite in the same league as Sassan, but with a gap in the clouds, here is this evenings moon.

80-200mm lens + 2x converter. 1/200 sec, f4. ISO 400

Don

Dave Smith
29-01-07, 22:30
Not quite in the same league as Sassan, but with a gap in the clouds, here is this evenings moon.

80-200mm lens + 2x converter. 1/200 sec, f4. ISO 400

Don

That's very impressive Don. The terminator region is really clear and sharp and you haven't overexposed other parts of the Moon which is a common fault.

Dave

Canis Vulpes
30-01-07, 12:47
Not quite in the same league as Sassan, but with a gap in the clouds, here is this evenings moon.

80-200mm lens + 2x converter. 1/200 sec, f4. ISO 400

Don

Nice one Don,

I am impressed with this one from Sassan -> http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=13495

You were lucky to catch a gap in the clouds yesterday evening as was 100% cover in the midlands.

Forecast for this evening is clear but cold (-1) - Brrrr :eek:

Don Hoey
03-02-07, 00:13
Well at least I have beaten Sassan to this. :D :D

Taken this evening. The Moon and Saturn. 2 merged exposures as the Moon is too bright for Saturn to register on the same frame. Easily visible with a scope and 30x eyepiece.

Don

Don Hoey
03-02-07, 01:31
For any crazies still around that are interested, as of now 12:30, Saturn is about one moons width away from the moon, at 3 o'clock, and easily visible with 7x binoculars.

Don

Canis Vulpes
03-02-07, 09:17
Excellent, I assume we shall have a repeat today (03.02.07)

For any crazies still around that are interested, as of now 12:30, Saturn is about one moons width away from the moon, at 3 o'clock, and easily visible with 7x binoculars.

Don

Don Hoey
03-02-07, 11:13
Excellent, I assume we shall have a repeat today (03.02.07)

I have just checked the Heavans Above page, link http://www.heavens-above.com/ , and from Norfolk it shows :

At 20:00 Saturn about 4:30 o'clock to the Moon, at 21:00 at about 4 o'clock, at 22:00 at about 3:30 o'clock etc. However Saturn will be several Moon diameters further away in comparison with last night.

On the Heavans Above site once you enter your location you can see a Star Chart for your location for any date or time you desire.

Don

Dave Smith
03-02-07, 14:33
Very nice image of the Moon and Saturn Don. You are now clearly ready to photograph next month's occultation of Saturn which occurs on the morning of 2 March 2007. The timings for Cambridge are 02:39 to 02:54. It will be a grazing occultation for Birmingham and anywhere approximately on a line going from the NW to SE. Anyone south or west of that line will not get an occultation, just a near miss but which is still a good photo opportunity. Anyone to the north or east of that line get the full occultation and hence a chance of getting Saturn partly covered by the Moon.

While here can I also mention that on Saturday 3rd March there will be a total eclipse of the Moon the whole of which is visible from the UK. Sorry Sassan but you only get to see part of the eclipse at moonrise. There are more details at http://sunearth.gsfc.nasa.gov/eclipse/eclipse.html (http://sunearth.gsfc.nasa.gov/eclipse/eclipse.html)

The timings are
21:30:04 Partial eclipse starts
22:43:49 Total eclipse starts
23:58:01 Total eclipse ends
01:11:46 Partial eclipse ends

These times are GMT or UT

Attached are two images that I took of an occultation of Saturn on 03/11/01

Dave

Canis Vulpes
03-02-07, 22:29
I have just checked the Heavans Above page, link http://www.heavens-above.com/ , and from Norfolk it shows :

At 20:00 Saturn about 4:30 o'clock to the Moon, at 21:00 at about 4 o'clock, at 22:00 at about 3:30 o'clock etc. However Saturn will be several Moon diameters further away in comparison with last night.

On the Heavans Above site once you enter your location you can see a Star Chart for your location for any date or time you desire.

Don

Thanks Don, great information.

My exact location has a rise to ENE so tonight was a game of patience. I had to go to one end of the garden to get a glimpse when the moon was to the East. Using spot metering 300mm +TC17E II (510mm) and aperture priority at f5.6. I managed to get this one that I am rather pleased with and progress has been made personally. This was also shot handheld.

Don Hoey
04-02-07, 11:36
Using spot metering 300mm +TC17E II (510mm) and aperture priority at f5.6. I managed to get this one that I am rather pleased with and progress has been made personally. This was also shot handheld.

Very good Foxy. I guess the X is out from its winter rest for this.

Handheld :eek: just goes to show the advantage of VR, and to think I have been slinging an extra 5kg weight from the Slik for increased stability. :D :D

To get Saturn I also draped two 1 Kg bags of sunflower seeds over the scope to damp vibrations.

I am having another look at using the scope ( see if I can improve ). Not nearly as user friendly as using a standard lens though. The scope gives equivalent of 1000mm but with lens + converter I have 400mm. So far image sharpness goes with the lens at 400mm.

Stevie mentioned an upcomming Earth shine event that I will get info on.

Don

Canis Vulpes
04-02-07, 15:04
Very good Foxy. I guess the X is out from its winter rest for this.

Handheld :eek: just goes to show the advantage of VR, and to think I have been slinging an extra 5kg weight from the Slik for increased stability. :D :D

To get Saturn I also draped two 1 Kg bags of sunflower seeds over the scope to damp vibrations.

I am having another look at using the scope ( see if I can improve ). Not nearly as user friendly as using a standard lens though. The scope gives equivalent of 1000mm but with lens + converter I have 400mm. So far image sharpness goes with the lens at 400mm.

Stevie mentioned an upcomming Earth shine event that I will get info on.

Don

The X was brought out of hibernation for this one. Shutter speed in the order of 1/640 at ISO200 using spot metering at 510mm. It would have been possible to handhold without VR, although VR was ON.

I am impressed with sharpness retained using 1.7X TC with the primary lens virtually wide open (f3.3~ish)

Sadly no Saturn in my shot :(

Don Hoey
04-02-07, 21:35
I am impressed with sharpness retained using 1.7X TC with the primary lens virtually wide open (f3.3~ish)

(

Well this one will sound like a nightmare then :D :D

Another bracket making session today. I was going to look at the scope then thought if Sassan can do a x3 converter job on his 600 why not try two 2x converters on my 80-200. Although it means more elements than I care to think about, I feel it worth a try.

I did a sample shot using a milk container saved from the ring flash job. Takes in Robs bar code test. The full frame shot taken from 20 feet away is attached.

My Slik weighs 6kg but I hung a further 10kgs from it to increase stability for this shot, nearest thing to nailing tripod to the patio. Focusing will be the biggest problem as this combination is f11 wide open.

A few mods later, ie trying to do away with perching a bag of sunflower seeds on top to dampen any shutter vibration, and attaching the riflescope for easy planet aquisition, and thick fog had decended as can be seen from the attached pic of the camera. No chance of a proper trial tonight.

Don

Canis Vulpes
05-02-07, 10:08
I have heard about people who stack TC's and there is a modification to a TC to allow this. I never really thought quality would result however, the milk bottle pictured is excellent. Even at f11 1/160th at ISO200 should be about the shutter speed required for correct exposure and enough to null any effect of shutter vibration.

The right hand image of the X and stacked TC's really shows the mist of yesterday, hope we have clear skies this week.

Dave Smith
22-02-07, 13:50
There is a photo opportunity this Friday evening when the Moon will plough its way through the Pleiades (Seven Sisters) from around 10.30 GMT to around midnight. The forecast in the UK is not too good but in other parts of the world there may be a good chance.

Dave

Don Hoey
24-02-07, 16:39
There is a photo opportunity this Friday evening when the Moon will plough its way through the Pleiades (Seven Sisters) from around 10.30 GMT to around midnight. The forecast in the UK is not too good but in other parts of the world there may be a good chance.

Dave


Well we missed that event as too much cloud cover.

The next major event which will be visible in the UK is a rare lunar eclipse on the 3rd of March. It will start around 20:18 with max exclpse at 23:21. From a general photography point of view, ie for those without fast lenses or special tracking kit, the period between about 20:18 to 21:30 will probably be the best, as the moon turns through a bright coppery colour to brick red as it passes through the Penumbral shadow. From 21:30 onwards light will diminish as the moon enters the Umbral shadow and turns deep red or rusty in colour before ulimately becoming hard to see at 23:21.

Dave in between almost permenant cloud and dull conditions here I did manage a moon shot 2 days ago ( 21 Feb ) and again early last night. Both taken with a 400mm f5.6 lens.

Don

Dave Smith
25-02-07, 01:07
Hi Don,
Going by those two shots the total eclipse of the Moon should be no problem. I'm also intending to have a go with a 400mm lens on a fixed tripod but with a 1.4x convertor. I have taken a full Moon pic with that arrangement which has come out fine. The total eclipse itself may be problematic as it is darker and will require a longer exposure. It is possible that it may need a tracking mount, we will just have to wait and see. All good fun.

Dave

sassan
25-02-07, 13:12
To answer Foxy's question on where the stacked multiple TC image would be acceptable or not ( A phenomenon that I can sware have read somewhere as something not possible or not to be perform by the manufacturer's recommendation) I did a test tonight. Two of images obtained are added to gallery (Sorry I find it very difficult at times to find the old forum topics, still navigatioin being a problem for me, so left the images for easier approachable gallery. Here are the links.


LINK - 1
http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=15091&size=big&limit=recent

LINK - 2
http://www.worldphotographyforum.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=15093&limit=recent

Dave Smith
25-02-07, 18:54
Don

I have been looking at photos of a total lunar eclipse I took in 2003 and find that the ratio of the time exposures from full Moon to eclipsed Moon are 1 to 2000.
i.e. I used 1/500 s for the full and 4 s for the eclipsed. All other factors were the same.

The Moon moves relative to us at 15 arc seconds per second. The diameter of the Moon is 0.5 degree which equals 1800 arc seconds. So in each second of exposure with a fixed mount the Moon will move just under 1% of its diameter. I'll leave you to judge whether that would be acceptable or not. It may be worth trying with as high an iso as the camera permits (or use RAW) and possibly stretching the result in photoshop. What I am saying here of course only really applies if you want a detailed red Moon. A small red Moon as part of a scenic shot could be much easier.

This is probably all quite academic as it will be cloudy !!

Dave

Don Hoey
25-02-07, 19:48
Don

This is probably all quite academic as it will be cloudy !!

Dave

I have just seen or forecast through to Friday the 2nd and its grim apart from tomorrow. :( :( I need one clear night to prove if 2x TC will work satisfactorily on my 400 ( it is not recommended for focal lengths greater than 200mm ). Not sure if I can get reasonable results with that, never mind moving into Sassans league. :D

Well done with your pic in the gallery as it shows what we can expect to see if the sky is clear.

Don

Don Hoey
26-02-07, 22:34
Tonights moon taken with 400mm f5.6 and TC201 2x converter. This converter is designed for lenses up to 200mm, and not recommended for the 400 lens so not a bad result. ISO400, lens wide open so effective aperture f11, shutter speed 1/200 to minimise any vibration effects.

Modifications to kit before trying this combination were making a new mounting foot extension for the lens ( see post in lenses forum ), adding a 1.5 kg counterbalance to the Manfrotto 501 head and suspending a 5kg weight off the tripod main boss to keep vibrations to a minimum.

Cloud cover has now come in or I would try a mini comp with Sassan and add my last TC. Not that that could really compete as it would only give 1600mm f22 wide open. :D :D

Don

Dave Smith
26-02-07, 23:30
Tonights moon taken with 400mm f5.6 and TC201 2x converter. This converter is designed for lenses up to 200mm, and not recommended for the 400 lens so not a bad result. ISO400, lens wide open so effective aperture f11, shutter speed 1/200 to minimise any vibration effects.


Don

That looks nice and sharp Don, how are you managing that because it is not easy. How do you plan to cope with the total eclipse because it looks as if you may need a shutter speed of around 10s? Because of that I think I will cheat and use my driven mount. I have also been experimenting this evening and have taken some shots through a 400mm lens plus a 1.4TC. The result as far as I can tell is identical with yours. I also took a shot through my 200mm telescope where there is clearly more detail. Unfortunately, although I could just squeeze tonight's Moon into the field of view, a full Moon is too big, so for the eclipse will use the camera lens.

Dave

Don Hoey
27-02-07, 00:14
Dave,

I only managed a couple of shots before the cloud came in, so picked on the one with highest shutter speed. The intention was to progressivly work my way down the shutter speed range and that would show up the minimum that I could go to. Just been outside and its a bit of a dead duck as quite a bit of general thin cloud as well as thicker stuff. Hey ho, will keep trying if we get any clear skies before Saturday.

As for the eclipse I will just use the 400 and no converter. Less magnification but lots fewer probs in terms of shutter speed.

Don

Dave Smith
27-02-07, 08:30
Well if this one is not successful the next is 21 Feb 2008 and then a 2 year gap.

Dave

sassan
27-02-07, 08:49
Don as you wanted, here are a few images of my set up.

Explanation on last image that are my true practical secrets are in merit order IMHO:
1) Wimberley style gimbel head. The main key to success. When long lens is place right here (At the center of gravity using 3 way adjustments) the set up is virtually weightless. I can use even losely fasten knobs, yet move the point of lens in any direction accurately and with ease. The good thing is where I leave the point of shot, it stays there. If you have worked with the heavy camera/lens, you know how frustrating is when you finally zero in on location you want, and the moment removing you hand off the camera, it sags down with gravity so constantly you need to keep in mind a rough correction factor here, if not using a solid setup (I still have the nightmare of the days or rather nights that I was using my regular tripod).

2) Solid tripod (Make sure recommended carrying weight of tripod is well above the intended weight of you set up. Manufacturers tend to lie well here.

3) Remote shutter release. I use the wired one to exclude the problems specially with IR and battery of wireless ones. Mine is the cheaper one from Hong Kong. Does excellent job.

4) Magnifier for viewfinder. Remember you are not having any focus assistant what so ever. Don't laugh but without this, I definitely bracket my focusing. I have two magnifier. Here is the Nikon DG-2. Seems for once the different manufacturers did not mind to use the same standard of fitting (Unlike their zealously formated other aspects such as bayonet, memory etc). I use the Olympus for when moon is very high in the sky as that one has 90 degree turn and 2 different magnifications (Cons being right to left not corrected and no option to see the viewfinder unmagnified (Checking manual parameters, ISO etc).

5) Mirror lock up that is set from "Custom menu" in Canon.

I don't use any counterbalance weight. My set up as seen is rock steady. The other problem is you need to virtually chase moon with every shot. In about 4 exposure, moon is completely traveled from above to lower frame of my view finder so repeatative repositioning is a must. No if you want to change a parameter, ISO, EV etc, just figure out the efficiency and time. You surely want to have a close communication with higher authorities, as partially cloudy sky means pending disaster and frustrations.

Wish every one especially for resident of Europe a fun picturing total eclipse. We unlucky North Americans especially the west coast residents will have penumbra only from 18:24 or so on March 3rd (Moon rise 17:40) so I'll keep on looking at my cholesterol levels to keep myself un-rusty for the next one to come.

Don Hoey
27-02-07, 09:20
Thanks for those Sassan.

I am just about to step out the door and go to Focus On Imaging Show and will look at your Wimberly head there, also eyepiece magnifier as I totally understand that bit. I am meeting Foxy there so I am sure we will discuss the subject.

Don

Don Hoey
28-02-07, 01:15
Well with clouds scudding across the sky and a fair wind I did manage a shot with 400 plus two 2x converters tonight.

One of the converters is a bit like coke bottle glass so not expecting great things. Image converted to B&W to get rid of a shed load of CA.:eek:

2 pics attatched. One is full frame and the other a crop. ISO 500 at 1/100 sec, effective aperture f22.

Sassan, we did not see a Wimberly type head at the show, so for now I will take solice in the fact that at GB 499 its cost equals the value of my 400mm lens. Interesting concept from your pics though ....................... I feel a workshop job comming on if I upgrade the 400 as it only weighs 1200g, hence the counterbalance I mentioned which is to take care of the camera weight.

Don

Dave Smith
02-03-07, 10:29
I set my alarm last night and was pleasantly surprised that it was clear and so I had a go at the occultation. The results are below. Some playing around in Photoshop was necessary as the Moon is so much brighter than Saturn.

These were taken with a 20Da at the prime focus of a Vixen VC200L telescope. Time exposure 1/100 s.

Dave

somert8
02-03-07, 18:01
Wow Dave,those are great,with Saturn underneath,brill.

sassan
02-03-07, 18:43
The results are below.
Dave


Dave I have never hated you this much! (You know my mixed up sensations that makes "Hat" a proportional value of excellent in logarithmic number of n power....).

Simply stunning. Very well done and keep up the excellent work.

Note: Your announcements of events has always been a great asset to the forum. Thank you for excellent job you do.

dafi
02-03-07, 21:30
I just dropped in to night to see if i could sus out the eclipse tomorow night and i have enjoyed this exelent thread. I have been shooting the moon hand held for ages with my wee Kodak cx6230 and bird spotting scope. Its brilliant practice to develop a steady hand for the birds Heres a shot i took the other night through the cloud. I did give it a slight tint with the kodak and a crop

Don Hoey
02-03-07, 23:33
These were taken with a 20Da at the prime focus of a Vixen VC200L telescope. Time exposure 1/100 s.

Dave

Hats off to you Dave ................ BRILLIANT

I was going for a lower res job but ...... you've guessed it ..... cloud :( :(

Forecast for tomorrow is fair so fingers crossed.

Don

Don Hoey
02-03-07, 23:38
I just dropped in to night to see if i could sus out the eclipse tomorow night and i have enjoyed this exelent thread. I have been shooting the moon hand held for ages with my wee Kodak cx6230 and bird spotting scope. Its brilliant practice to develop a steady hand for the birds Heres a shot i took the other night through the cloud. I did give it a slight tint with the kodak and a crop

Well done Dafi. :) For a 2mp compact I am impressed.
Its good to see others joining in. Best wishes for tomorrow night.

Don

Gidders
03-03-07, 23:36
Anyone seen the eclipse thats happening NOW :D

dafi
04-03-07, 02:50
Thats been a realy enjoyable night. My first proper eclipse with no cloud. I managed a couple of shots but couldnt get near getting an exposure when i wanted to catch the fantastic colours. Briliant and chalenging night though

postcardcv
04-03-07, 17:07
superb to watch the eclipse on a clear night... here's my best shot of the red moon and a sequence of it going into shadow.

Taken with my 400D and Sigma 500 f4.5 on top of Manfrotto 055 legs and 501 head.

Don Hoey
04-03-07, 17:13
Very good postie,

I have just been looking at the composite on BF.

Don

Dave Smith
04-03-07, 17:13
superb to watch the eclipse on a clear night... here's my best shot of the red moon and a sequence of it going into shadow.

Taken with my 400D and Sigma 500 f4.5 on top of Manfrotto 055 legs and 501 head.

Very nice and well presented.

Dave

Jonathan Farmer
10-03-07, 01:17
Sassan,

I understand your set up, but what shutter speed were you using? The surface of the moon would have mooved past quickly in your view finder; this must have been your bigest challange or did you have a tracking device as used on some telescopes?

sassan
10-03-07, 07:38
Sassan,

I understand your set up, but what shutter speed were you using? The surface of the moon would have mooved past quickly in your view finder; this must have been your bigest challange or did you have a tracking device as used on some telescopes?


No Jonathan I didn't use any tracking device. As you mentioned the moon does move extremely quick at this magnification. To give you an estimate, for every 4 fast shots I take, a repositioning is a must (Moon has moved out of view finder).
The effective diaphragm, considering I started with wide open 600mm's of F/4.5 would be 1/3 higher for FD to EOS adapter, 2x2x3 for the 3 extenders, and 1.6 for digital factor, so something like 27 lower F which is translated to something like F/107.
____________________________________________
How I reach to this F number? Well
Fstop = Focal length / maximum diameter of lens
so my magnification is:
(600 + 33%) x 1.6 x 2 x 2 x 3
or
14285mm lens
Now apply formula:
F = 14285mm / 133mm
F = 107
____________________________________________

My main secrete or rather luck is the good sensor of Canon that can take a reasonable (Within the limitations) picture at ISO 1600.

If you check the EXIF, I had ISO 1600 for 1/15 seconds. This is at F/67 (If my calculation is right). I have tried lower shutter speed even close to 1 second with various degree of success to not show motion artifact. Also I tried one or two F stop lower from lens but not much to speak about. Well all I can say is I am personally impressed and had a fun in this trial. By the way now that we got to this discussion, let me just talk little like Archimedes:
"Give me a level point and with adding few more billions extender, I may let you walk to the moon literary with my tele tube..." :)
Ahhh not felt good like this in a long time.
Well truly speaking after learning about the problems builder had to erect the London's Eye in the side of Thames river, I really start to appreciate Archimedes' wisdom even more...:)

Jonathan Farmer
16-03-07, 15:36
I find the best exposure for the moon is ISO 200, f/5.6, 1/125. Bracket exposures and keep the equipment rock steady.

To get good detail of craters, do not take a full moon as there ae no cast shadows. Use the longest focal length you have.

See attachment

Best regards to all

somert8
16-03-07, 21:16
That really is a wonderful shot Jonathan,the shadows really add 3d to it. Your settings are very helpful,I did`nt realize how bright the moon actually is.

Here`s my feeble attempt;

Don Hoey
24-04-07, 13:52
Here is a shot of the moon from the night before last that shows a fair amount of surface detail.

400mm AIS lens 1/80 sec at f8 ISO200

A bit of a heavy crop but my shot with the 2 x converter is too soft. :(

Don

Don Hoey
24-04-07, 15:00
Sassan,

I managed to pick up a used DG-2 eyepiece magnifier but now have to wait for the eyepiece adaptor to arrive.
Now I just need to find a decent 1.4 converter that will work with my 400mm f5.6 AIS lens. A look at Andys lens comparison suggests I need an old 500mm to go with it on the basis that a 500 is a lot more portable than a 600. :rolleyes:

Don

Jonathan Farmer
24-04-07, 15:23
Hi guys,

You have to look at this site!!!!! Its the best I have seen of the moon using camera lenses as compared to telescopes; these moon shots were taken stacking TC converters one on top another using a Sigma 300-800 f/5.6 lens. Romy is a very good and interesting photographer and I think a lot can be learnt from him........ http://www.pbase.com/liquidstone/moon_shots

Regards

Jonathan

Don Hoey
24-04-07, 17:06
WOW

Thanks for that Jonathan. The first few I have looked at are amazing. Now bookmarked.

Don

Don Hoey
27-04-07, 21:42
Keeping the thread going while I wait for my 1.4 converter.

Two pics of this evenings moon. One with 400mm and the other with 400 plus 2x converter.

Don

Canis Vulpes
28-04-07, 08:07
Nice sharp pics Don.

I too saw the moon last night but it was softened by poor visibility, hoping for clear skies.

Don Hoey
28-04-07, 09:15
I have to sneak them in when I can as I'll never compete with the razor blade sharpness of your 300 and tc. :p :) Still it provides me with a challenge. ;)

Hoping for great things from the Kenco 1.4 when I get it. TC 201 only really works fairly well on near subjects with the 400.

Jonathans link has also got me going.

Don

Saphire
22-05-07, 23:07
Saturn is very close to the moon and I have just managed to get a shot.

Dave Smith
22-05-07, 23:29
Saturn is very close to the moon and I have just managed to get a shot.

Excellent stuff. Earlier in the evening the Moon passes right across Saturn.

Dave

Don Hoey
23-05-07, 10:02
Well done Christine. I only managed 4 frames in between the clouds, one posted in the Astro thread.

Don

Saphire
23-05-07, 10:11
Thanks Dave, Don you have the best photo, its really close to the moon.

Don Hoey
23-05-07, 10:20
Clouds drove me mad as after the posted shot I thought I would add the 2x Nikon converter to the new Kenko's ( a touch of Sassan here ) to give a focal length of 2240mm. But by the time the clouds had moved, so had Saturn, so I could not get them both in shot. :(

Don

Don Hoey
31-05-07, 22:49
Full moon tomorrow and another on the 30th. Stevie has just advised that that will be a ' blue moon ' . Not literally, but apparently two full moons in one month is rare enough to generate the expression - Once In A Blue Moon.

Don

sassan
31-05-07, 23:39
Full moon tomorrow and another on the 30th. Stevie has just advised that that will be a ' blue moon ' . Not literally, but apparently two full moons in one month is rare enough to generate the expression - Once In A Blue Moon.

Don



Don you gave it for free. I was going to ask a queeze as to what a blue moon means.
Well hope to see some pictures from all over the world of this blue moon.

g8ina
01-06-07, 16:26
The original expression was due to the actual blue shade the moon achieved during the Krakatoa eruption. There was so much stuff ejected into the atmosphere that moon light was coloured...

sassan
01-06-07, 16:53
The original expression was due to the actual blue shade the moon achieved during the Krakatoa eruption. There was so much stuff ejected into the atmosphere that moon light was coloured...


Thanks for info.
As I was watching the moon for short time (Limited time due to my schedulle otherwise moon was so beautiful with partly cloudy sky), it really looked blue... May be due to stuff in LA's air we smoke happily everyday:)