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GovtLawyer Jun 20, 2005 10:57 PM

It is a beautiful full moon evening, so I took my tripod, Canon XT and Sigma 18-200 up to my roof. I tried several dozen different settings, and no matter how I tried, I came up with a blurry white ball. On all of the settings I used mirror lock-up, long exposure compensation and a remote control shutter.

I have a fairly cheap SLIK tripod, so I tried it as close to the ground as I could get, to lower the center of gravity.

I tried manual focus and auto. I tried average metering and then realized the center weighted would be best, so I changed it. I used F stops from wide open to closed down. I changed the ISO from 100 to 800.

I think, in the final analysis, the problem might very well have been the tripod, although it wasn't windy and it seemed fairly secure.

So, what is the best way to Shoot The Moon? Be as specific as you can with all of the settings and variables.

PeterP Jun 20, 2005 11:32 PM

Use full manual metering on the camera, the meter won't manage it.
The camera is seeing a huge amount of black sky and trying to adjust it to be 18% gray so badly overexposing the moon in the process.

Exposure for the moon is just about one stop above the sunny 16 setting.
(Sunny 16 is the exposure in full sun is 1 / ISO @ F16)
So 1 / ISO at F11 should work.
At ISO 800 it is 1/800 sec at F11. :-) that could be hand holdable with a 200mm lens, on the tripod it should be great.

Also manually focus, and bracket a bit to get the exposure closer.


PeterP Jun 21, 2005 9:27 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I ran out and took one :-)
BTW: the full moon is not the best time to take its picture, everything looks flat on it.
The craters and fearutes look much better at other phases usually right along the terminator.

EOS 20D - Manual exposure and focusing, RAW mode,
ISO 100 - F10 @ 1/100 sec,
300mm F2.8 with a 2x TC,
PS crop, unsharp, resize for web


Tom LaPrise Jun 24, 2005 7:33 AM

It might look better during other phases, but that looks mighty nice to me!

logrhythmic Jul 2, 2005 11:59 PM

I agree... pretty nice job! I tried a moon shot, but my camera only has 10x zoom with 3.2 digital (which I will never use again as it trashes the detail). From now on, I'll leave the moon shots up to you guys with nicer cams and lenses.

Daikomyo Jul 13, 2005 6:28 AM


To get shots like this on my DMC FZ10 with 12x zoom what extras would I need and settings wouldI use please?



Tom Overton Jul 13, 2005 10:09 AM

Daikomyo wrote:


To get shots like this on my DMC FZ10 with 12x zoom what extras would I need and settings wouldI use please?


I'm not familiar with your camera, but this topic was just covered in the Kodak forums:

Trouble with moon shots


Shooting the Moon (Hmmm sound familiar?)

Tom, on Point Pelee, Canada

Daikomyo Jul 13, 2005 11:03 AM

Cheers Tom

Tom Overton Jul 13, 2005 12:54 PM

One other thing to check, depending on your camera, is your white balance. Sometimes Auto mode will be too warm; the moon almost looks orange. If you set it for tungsten, you'll get a cooler moon - more white (or blue)


Tom, on Point Pelee, Canada

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