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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:29 AM   #1
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Equipped with a canon 400D and the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS [my highest zoom lens ]
I took photos of the lunar eclipse last night. But in agreement with my friend's comments, the pictures weren't very sharp. The craters were still darker than the rest, but its outline wasn't very sharp.

I used ISO200 (to minimise noise) and f/8 initially for sharper detail, but I found the pictures were blurry because the exposure time was set to 30 seconds by the camera and moon was moving too fast along the frame at 200mm focal length.

I then went to manual mode and used f/8 at 5 seconds exposure. I also used manual focus because it was too dark to autofocus and was really careful to find the sharpest view.

So what am I doing wrong? I did use a sturdy tripod.


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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:35 AM   #2
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IMO you already have the answer:
"... but I found the pictures were blurry because the exposure time was set to 30 seconds by the camera and moon was moving too fast along the frame at 200mm focal length."

-> The moon reflects light from the sun in which case it is still very bright for a 5s exposure - Like you've found out the camera exposure doesn't do very well with this type of lighting... The shutter speed needs to be much higher than this just like daylight otherwise the overexposure will render everything blurry (to which a longer lens might help as well)
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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:39 AM   #3
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hi NHL,

30 seconds exposure was the first photo I took and I understand why that one would be blurry

with the next few though, I used 5 seconds exposure. Any less and it would be too dark, or I would have to use a bigger aperture but not sure if this would decrease the detail?
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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:48 AM   #4
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Not the best picture, but this is the exposure I had a while back:

1/10s f/11.0 at 548.0mm iso200 - (Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 with 2xTC)


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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:51 AM   #5
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OK, this wasn't taken yesterday, but the EXIF data were ISO200, F/5.6, 1/400 sec, with Canon 350D and 70-200 F/4 L at 200mm handheld. No PP, 100% crop.
Just my $0.05


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Old Aug 29, 2007, 5:57 AM   #6
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maybe 5 seconds was still a little bit too long...
seems like you got good exposure of it there using 1/10 seconds, but I wonder if that's because a significant portion of the moon is filling the frame?

i was thinking before you replied that manual focusing might have had something to do with it. i've tried manual focusing before and also found those photos to be blurry
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Old Aug 29, 2007, 6:09 AM   #7
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algold wrote:
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OK, this wasn't taken yesterday, but the EXIF data were ISO200, F/5.6, 1/400 sec, with Canon 350D and 70-200 F/4 L at 200mm handheld. No PP, 100% crop.
Just my $0.05

omg, that pic was taken handheld???

it seems like both pics have very short exposure times...starting to think this is my downfall
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Old Aug 29, 2007, 6:20 AM   #8
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jaykobe wrote:
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omg, that pic was taken handheld???l
The handheld is perfectly fine @ 1/400s

-> This is one of the situation where LiveView would be a BIG help especially with a histogram overlay
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Old Aug 29, 2007, 2:02 PM   #9
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Just because it's night time it doesn't mean you can't use a fast shutter speed :-)
the dark sky simply fools us (and the camera metering) into thinking that we need a long exposure, but the Moon is bright enough and as NHL noted, it's not a huge problem to get a handheld shot at 1/400 sec :-)
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Old Sep 1, 2007, 12:37 AM   #10
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Hand held mycamera for this shot whileleaning outmy apartmentwindow :shock: I was very surprised I was able to get a decent shot w/o my tripod.

-Canon 20D

-Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 lens at 200mm

-Shutter speed 1/800 sec

-f/4.5

-ISO 200

-Daylight white balance

-Auto focus

-100% crop


Thanks for looking!

Chris





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