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Thread: Capturing the moon

  1. #1
    Member nicnax's Avatar
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    Capturing the moon

    Hi All,
    Just looking for some advice on photographing the moon. I'm a complete amature and have a D5000 with a 55-200mm lens. I took a few pictures of the recent eclipse but wasn't completely satisfied with the zoom.

    Can anyone offer advice on what I should buy? I have a budget upto around $1300, and in the future would like to buy a new body once I become more familiar with the D5000.

    Thanks.

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    The Commander mikew09's Avatar
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    I have not done much myself but I have taken the full moon on a couple of occasions with my 70-200. On a bright full moon I general treated it like a day shot as the brighness of the moon is quite strong.
    Please be honest with your Critique of my images. I may not always agree, but I will not be offended - CC assists my learning and is always appreciate

    https://mikeathome.smugmug.com/

    Canon 5D3 - Gripped, EF 70-200 L IS 2.8 MkII, , 24-105 L 4 IS MkI, 580 EX II Speedlite, 2x 430 Ex II Speedlite


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    Member Maureen's Avatar
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    Hi nicnax, yes I, as a newbie, had problems. In fact, I got my best shot sith my Panasonic Lumix hand held. I had my SLR set up with 300 zoom, thinking of spectacular results but alas, mucked it up big time. Half asleep may have been a contributing factor!

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    Member luepit's Avatar
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    Hi
    I have same camera and I tried hand held but I think I needed to set up the tripod.

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    with a crop camera (as D5000) and a 200 lens you can get a real good picture of the moon, set it up at biggest resolution so you can crop the photo in the computer and still have detail.

    The moon is pretty shiny so you don´t need a tripod, what works for me is:
    - Longest focusing lens, lowest ISO, open aperture and fast speed. Often I try a manual shot let say f/5,6 and 1/1000s, if the moon results too white and without detail I try increasing speed until it shows all the detail. Try fixing everything as suggested and play with speed until you get a shot you like.

    regards
    From the end of the World with a Nikon D90, Nikon 16/85 3.5-5.6 and Sigma 30 1.4
    Come and visit!

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the advice everyone. I'm hanging out for the next full moon now!

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    Member GriMo's Avatar
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    I take a different approach, typically because if I am taking pic at night I have a tripod with me anyway, might as well use it. Definitely zoom is required, the more you have the better the moon will look. Typically I will use a 70-200 and a 1.4x extender, if I had longer I wouldn't hesitate to use it

    I typically run about f/9 or f/10, shutter speed of 1/125 and iso100. I only have a relatively cheap tripod so its not the most stable. Consequently I use mirror lockup and the timer otherwise I find I get a "shudder" in the image.

    I am by no means an expert but often go "out bush" and of a night there isn't much else to do. Last piece of advice I can give is if it's cold be careful not to breath on your lens, will fog up faster then you imagine possible.
    Please feel free to rework my photos, but give me step-by-step instructions on what you did, so I can learn

    CC is always welcome and appreciated

    Canon 40D + EFS 17-85 IS USM + EF50MM f 2.5 Compact Macro

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    As GriMo said ^

    Shoot in manual mode to get the best control over exposure but small aperture, fast(ish) shutter speed, low ISO is the general way to go. I find that under-exposing slightly works well.

    Remember that the moon is actually pretty bright, so unlike most types of night photography a slow shutter speed isn't required.
    Ryan

    D800 | Nikkor 24-70mm ƒ/2.8 | Cullmann Tripod |Manfrotto 680B Monopod | Lowepro Flipside 400 AW | 2x Yungnuo 560 flash & wireless trigger| FleaBay Lightstand, umbrella and collapsible softbox
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    Member Tommo1965's Avatar
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    I normaly use spot metering and center Af ..exposes the moon just right ..

    heres one I did a few weeks back Nikon D300s Vr II 70-200 with a 1.7x TC ..turns out I used Pattern metering for this

    Last edited by Tommo1965; 24-07-2011 at 1:00am.

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    I took this earlier this year. RAW Capture.
    Using the 100-400 lens helped, and interestingly the moon was moving quite noticeably at 400mm! So, i used 1/90 sec and f/8.
    ISO 100, and center weighted metering. I under exposed by half a stop i think, to capture all the detail.
    WB 3932k

    Once in Lightroom, adjusted the tone curve to around -45 for shadows and darks, boosted some clarity, set capture sharpening to 51, radius 0.5 amount 100. NR only 5

    This was my first attempt at the old light in the sky, am pretty happy, but was most amazed how it moved up the locked focal point.
    I'd like to try with the 7D for the crop factor, but I think the larger 21MP of the 5D has helped with detail at such a tight crop.

    DOn't know? Anyone tried this? (Full frame > pixel density V Crop Sensor smaller density? 21 Vs 18 in this case)

    Hope this info may help you try some post processing options.
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    Canon 5DmkII, 7D | 16-35 f2.8L | 50 1.8 | 24-105 f4L | 70-200 f2.8 | 100-400 f4.5-5.6L |
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    Member kujayee's Avatar
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    Great moon shots there.

    Shooting in RAW will help in PP if you need to make any adjustments. I tried spot metering and got a good result though only with the Canon 75-300 which isn't really that good of a lens.

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