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Old Aug 10, 2006, 4:59 PM   #1
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Couple of night ago it was full moon and night was clear and bright with moonlight. I used my 30D on a tripod to shoot the moon. The result was disappointing. I used both manual and auto focus to take many shots but all came out bad. All I see a bright ball of light in my pictures. No fine edges or any description of moon surface. I was using Sigma 17-70mm lens at 70 mm. I think my problem is just not having enough magnification at 70mm.

What is the best way to take night shots like this? What focal length lens doI need? How doI meter the exposure for these shots???
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Old Aug 10, 2006, 5:28 PM   #2
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I just gave this a try myself with my Sigma 50-500 ("Bigma") extended out to its full 500mm.

Normally I use a large (equivalent to 2000mm f/10) Celestron SC telescope to take such photos and the results are excellent, but I was just curious how well my 30D+Bigma would do.

I did try full auto and was not very pleased, even with my good, stable tripod.

However, using program mode and setting both the focus and the metering to point (spot), I was very pleased with the shot, which turned out very nice using an ISO of 400 ... tripod photo was sharp. I was surprised thathandheld was not too bad and handheld with a 1200ISO was sharp (but noisy) ... I would normally not try such a shot handheld, anyway, but I was experimenting. Even at 500mm, the moon only filled the frameabout one-quarter ... but using the Celestron at 2000mm, I can focus on many larger individual craters.

Your 70mm is just not enough magnification to do the shot justice.


** on edit: BTW, you might put this into the "Digiscoping" threads located near the botom of the main thread/topic listings
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Old Aug 10, 2006, 10:28 PM   #3
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harana wrote:
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What is the best way to take night shots like this?
I didn'try this lately, but the moon is just a reflection from the sun and it could be as bright! Last time I try this I could also handhold because the shutter speed was way up there especially at high ISO...

-> If you want to take a landscape picture with the moon in it, you normally have to compose two shots: One exposed for the bright moon and 1 expose @ a much slower shutter for the darker landscape (the camera just doesn't have enough latitude to capture both at the same time!) and then recombine them
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Old Aug 11, 2006, 10:32 AM   #4
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You need lot more focal length for more details in your moon shots. I would say something of the order of atleast 400mm.

For shooting moon, sunny 16 rule works fine.
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Old Aug 11, 2006, 4:15 PM   #5
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Canon 20D with a Canon 400mm lens exposur time1/60 aperturef5.6 ISO 200. Remember when the moon is full or 1/2 it is much brighter so your setting must change.
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 6:31 AM   #6
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I just had to try - Last night Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 with a 2x stacked on top of the 1.4x teleconverter (i.e. 840mm @ 1/400s and f/10): :-)
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 7:58 AM   #7
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... and this morning (840mm @ 1/1000s and f/16):
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 9:45 AM   #8
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I have the S1IS with a 10x zoom lens(380mm?) and I used manual exposure, 1/250s, f3.1, iso 50.

Used a tripod but would need more zoom or more megapixels to get a bigger pic.
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Old Aug 14, 2006, 12:45 PM   #9
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bobbyz wrote:
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You need lot more focal length for more details in your moon shots. I would say something of the order of atleast 400mm.

For shooting moon, sunny 16 rule works fine.
Thank you all for the comments.I was concerned that my technique is faulty but it looks likethat I don't have enough magnification with my zoom.

What isthe rule of sunny 16?
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Old Aug 14, 2006, 2:49 PM   #10
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harana wrote:
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What isthe rule of sunny 16?
On a bright, sunny day, the correct exposure for any subject is f/16 at the shutter speed nearest to the reciprocal of the film speed.

FYI: http://www.fredparker.com/ultexp1.htm

BTW I've found an interesting site on moon shots: http://www.danheller.com/moon.html#1
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