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Old May 7, 2006, 5:02 PM   #1
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Hi!

Just tried my first Moonshots. Suppose they came out nearly O.K.

Limitations (that are not caused by the Camera, which is fine to exceptional) for the quality of prictures stem from location of shots taken-inside backyard, surrounded by buildings after a warm day, below Smog of petrochemical industie in a light-poisioned 300K inhabitant city. And of course, User Error.

Had to leave the Balcony to minimize shake during actual shot, used self Timer, 2 secs to low, tripod had to settle about four Seconds before shot-and Balcony too. Used 10 secs instead.

Used Tcon 17, 2x digital Magnification, all internal settings to low and did some postprocessing with Noiseware.
Please note: Don`t buy el cheapo Tripods. Did that, hated it, used up three times the time realy necessary to acomplish the job because of flimsy, jumpy controls of tripod. Not Good.

Had to compress picture to make it possible to be embedded. Will have to work on this issue, too.

Information posted in this Group and advice obtain from a friend(Thanks Bernd!) who is a long-time star gazer helped a lot.

Critics not welcome, but taken into consideration to improve my abilities (just in case someone takes something I say without a pound of salt: just kidding! ). Need to learn about all that Stuff.:-)

Oh well, did some IR moonshots as well, but they came out horrible.
Will have to work on that. Daytime shots with a Hoya 72 came out quite allright, though. Will put in additional effort next Weekend. I am away for the week (work), so I´ll sign off to get some sleep.:-)

Cheers,
Michael
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Old May 9, 2006, 11:51 AM   #2
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Nice initial attempt, Michael-

The image does illustrate the issues of using digital zoom with its pixel interpolation introducing additional noise. This photo would probably be better if posted at a smaller size to mask the noise or backing off from any use of digital zoom. Applying stronger noise reduction would probably take care of the evident noise but at a price of plastic fine details being lost...

Your listed steps that you went through show you are aware of the various aspects that will contribute to a better photo. A lightweight tripod on a wooden deck is easily overlooked as being able to introduce stray vibrations the digi will be subjected to. You might try hanging a weight from the center of the tripod to help damp out stray vibrations and always use the 10-second timer to allow time for damping of the stray vibrations caused by actuating the shutter.
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Old May 9, 2006, 6:56 PM   #3
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Moin Michael,
this is much better than my first moon shot.
Welcome to this forum!

Sven


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Old May 9, 2006, 7:23 PM   #4
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Hi Telecorder!

To be honest, this is a one of about three hundred-shots I did of the moon.

On , as I must admit, two Sessions, with some soul searching what went wrong inbetween. Some Issues I knew beforehand by lurking in this forum for soem time.

About twenty pics came out O.K.

I did try out a lot of combinations of time/apperture and exposure (that ´s what it is called in english, I think).

I did use the digital zoom and the 3MP EZ Mode as well as the 5MP EZ Mode.

I did shoot some raw images, but lack the appropriate means to process those by now. I will look into using bibble next weekend. Other problem sourcesI did find out myself. The deck was not wood, it was suspended on Iron Rods, btw ;-), so this puzzled me, but Iron tends to keep Vibrations nicely, even if there is some concrete inbetween. But this became quite a non-issue, when i jumped back into the flat after activating the self-timer and peeping out on the LCD. My neighbours must think that I get weirder by the hour. Oh well.

The size of the Image posted did in fact surprize me, I did see the pics in the programs I used as beeing much smaller, should have done some downscaling, but then I felt that this would be sort of cheating. If there is noise, someone has to see it and judge it, to help me get rid of it.

But all in all, despite all shortcomings of my system as a whole, it amazes me what can be done by relatively cheap means.In fact I am really a bit jealous concerning my northern German neighbour-his work is exceptional. Even if he is not "playing withLego" he sets his mind to use existing building blocks to create fatastic new Tools.

Anyway, I´ll make use of the hook on the tripod to weigh it down. Maybe I´ll get a little outside the city to get some clearer no disturbed and non layered cooler air.

I´ll refrain from using some EZ mode or digital zoom. But none the less, I doubt that I´ll squeeze out more than 10% details. What did in fact help me was doing the first pictures before it completely went dark. That reduces the maximum of the contrast a little, and that suits the low input dynamic of digital cameras a little.

Thanks for the advice,

Michael


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Old May 9, 2006, 7:39 PM   #5
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RealMash wrote:
Quote:
To be honest, this is a one of about three hundred-shots I did of the moon.
On , as I must admit, two Sessions, with some soul searching what went wrong inbetween. Some Issues I knew beforehand by lurking in this forum for soem time.
About twenty pics came out O.K.

:GBelieve me, anyone who has tried BIF or digiscoping knows the frustration and effort needed to get a few keepers!

Quote:
I did use the digital zoom and the 3MP EZ Mode as well as the 5MP EZ Mode. I´ll refrain from using some EZ mode...


Actually, the 5MP and 3MP EZ Modes arenot digital zoom but rather an in-camera crop just as one can do with imaging software except that its metered by the camera for exposure. This approach is actually better to use in circumstances such as your moon shot since the black sky would be cropped out anyway...

For posted image sizes, I usually try to verify they're 600 x 800 or smaller...

Keep paying the dues of failed attempts... its called experience and what we all have to pay for to get better! (And having the delete button allows for free 'film'!)
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Old May 9, 2006, 8:04 PM   #6
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Moin Sven!

I am absolutely jealous on your last Moonshot!

I am contemplating buying a "Russentonne" to get after you! Will probably not help a lot, but I will go down fighting ;-)

On the other Hand, you had it much easier, the top of your kit made it halfwayto the moon surface ;-)

I did send your Pic to a friend that is quite knowledgable concerning Astronomy and was always explaining to me why my shots will not work. They did (a little) but he explained why it will not be much better. So your picture is. I am looking forwad how he explains that this is the maximum, maybe better then it should be, ergo a forgery. Probabaly the rest of the world will not understand the German game of degrading any succes (heruntermachen, niedermachen, schlecht finden. Du weißt was ich meine). But it is fun to hang around a place (this forum) where people actually praise each others work and try to help others to improve, quite a unusual concept over here.

Still at work, waiting for some Systems to come online again...and believe me, if they don`t come up, 10+Million People willknow ;-)


Ciao

Michael





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Old May 9, 2006, 8:47 PM   #7
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Hi Telecorder!

Funny enough-I don`t feel frustrated on such occasions (I´m very new to all of this. Just turned forty and bought my second digicam in about four month, when I figured out the LZ3 did not do what I wanted it to do-because I missed the controls. The FZ30 seemed perfect. I am looking forward to the day, when I can say, that sth. that went wrong is due to the cameras inabilitys, and not mine. I guess that will be shortlyafter there is a FZ40 :?). I´m not a religious Person, but taking Pictures is my way to share the wonders my eyes do see with others. If it works out-great. I get praise, I feel satisfied. If I fail-that just shows I have to put in additional work and effort. I am very ambitious in my work, but I found out during the time I learned to dance (and got so ambitiousI wrecked my achilles sinuses)-making it look good takes a lot of hard work. But people that are really, really good never look stressed or strained. Ease comes with practice and training. And you don`t make grass grow faster by pulling at it ;-)



And with time, I get more and more"loose" with the delete Button. If it is not very good, it is not worth the effort to keep it and review it.

The next hot Topic for me is using the iR Filter. It makes for strange, sometimes threatening, sometimes enchanting pictures. But it takes practice as well.

Thanks a lot for the advice,

Michael


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Old May 10, 2006, 6:22 AM   #8
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RealMash wrote:
Quote:
..
I am contemplating buying a "Russentonne" to get after you! Will probably not help a lot, but I will go down fighting ;-)

..
Probabaly the rest of the world will not understand the German game of degrading any succes (heruntermachen, niedermachen, schlecht finden. Du weißt was ich meine). But it is fun to hang around a place (this forum) where people actually praise each others work and try to help others to improve, quite a unusual concept over here.

Still at work, waiting for some Systems to come online again...and believe me, if they don`t come up, 10+Million People willknow ;-)

...
Moin Michael,

I made some tests with the small "Russentonne" - a russian mirror tele with 500mm focal length. This one is not conditioned for astro photos (the mirror can be adjusted). Contrast and sharpness of the beroflex 500mm were much better. But I will try again, this combination is much smaller!
(Ein Kollege von mir hat die "entspannte" Linse mit 700/1000mm, die werd ich mir mal ausleihen).
The FZs need special (not big!) eye pieces due to the deeply recessed lens entrance pupil.
It is cheaper to buy a used Nikon instead of playing with expensive eye pieces.
You can read some thoughts of Jay Turberville here:
http://www.jayandwanda.com


Those "German games" keep me away from most german threads. I have been in one of them where SLR owners frequently "hurt" friendly FZ users in a dedicated Panasonic group! But I miss discussing themes in my native language!

Hope your system is online again!

Sven

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Old May 10, 2006, 10:15 AM   #9
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Moin Moin, Sven!

Back to work. Yes, everything we are responsible for does work. And yes, there is a 90% probability you would not post here if we really f***ed up ;-)(You might use a different provider, but most of them lease our net ;-)

Concerning the Russentonne: The size is what I found most compelling. It is relatively inexpensive and compat. Great for terrestrical Photos, but of course, a bit limited for Astro photography. On the other Hand, even if I really don`t like "Vereinsmeierei" (I wonder how to translate that word into english, let`s just say, I´m not a person to attend regualr meetings of a group for thesole purpose of attending) it might be a friutfull startegy to become a Member of a local Astronomy Club, and use a shared Telescpoe. But maybe too much of, well people and intereststclashing over equipment.

Concerning German Games: * Stuff removed that probably is a Germany only thing, which sven did kindly remind me off probably does not belong me*


I had estranged myself that much from my fellow kinsmen while beeing in Austria for three Months. I probably will be kicked out because of "unnecessary good Mood" or something liek that. Oh well.

Take care,

Michael









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Old May 10, 2006, 11:44 AM   #10
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Michael, I was only talking about certain kinds of "German" discussions.
We have got very nice German members in this forum, so let's talk about photos!
Sven
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