Leonids - Trial

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by abraxas, Nov 16, 2006.

  1. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I bought a cable for my d80 to try this out. I went to a dark area at the base of the mountains about 10 miles away from my house, with a half-charged battery (of course), and came up with the following;

    11/16/06 about 1:00 am

    [​IMG]
    Kinda cruddy.
    I could of done a little better post processing, but I just pulled it into cs2 and auto-adjusted.

    iso - 800
    2 sec.
    f3.8

    So, the cable worked great. Then I tried a much longer exposure.
    [​IMG]
    iso -800
    1248 secs. (20+ min)
    f3.8

    Same half-"asked" cs2 processing. I like the color. Light pollution from stressful city life beyond the mountains. Problem with long exposures is d80 takes as long to do the "job" as the exposures, ie; 20 minute exposure takes another twenty minutes to record the "job." Unsatisfactory. Must read the fine manual.

    Looking for maybe two, to five minute exposures. That should keep star arc to a minimum (20 minutes = 5 degrees of arc?). Hopefully will get 20-40 shots on a full battery (and some meteors this time) I did see two Leonids shooting through the sky, but didn't have my camera on them. Maybe tomorrow night, or the next. I have a couple darker locations I want to try.

    Any ideas, suggestions?
     
  2. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Sorry. No suggestions. I have never done this kind of photography myself.
    But I saw a falling star yesterday! :D From where I was standing in front of the door to our house. No camera on me, nothing, I did not plan to take any photos of the stars. But I was saying in one of the other threads on the Leonids that I have so far never even once seen a falling star. Well now I did :boogie:

    OK, this is a bit off topic, but I just felt I wanted to share.
    Let the astrophotogs come and explain how getting pics of the Leonids can be done then.
     
  3. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    How cool. I remember you saying that before- Congratulations! I;m going to re-read the other thread, where I should have posted this probably, but I was pretty tired last night. Will see what I can find today before heading out.
     
  4. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    Advice -- aim towards the constellation Leo. That's where they come from, so you're more likely to capture them as opposed to being aimed at Orion, which I think is nearly in the opposite direction.
     
  5. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks, sounds good; I was aiming southeast, but have no idea what I was aiming at/for. I'm also having trouble figuring out exposures. I'm thinking iso 400, f4 and maybe 4 second shutter speed. I liked the first shot above, but it looks too rough.
     
  6. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    I just looked it up, and Leo will be rising (just a tad North of due East) around midnight to 1:00 AM these days (under standard US time).
     
  7. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks astrostu! I made it out, but balled things up and came out of it with only one nearly decent shot.

    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=64344

    I'm hoping there's more tonight. I can't figure out whether I missed it now or tonight will be better. I have a lot to learn for sure.
     
  8. AluminumStudios

    AluminumStudios TPF Noob!

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    If it's taking an additional 20 minutes to "do the job" after a 20 minute exposure, then it sounds like you have some kind of noise reduction on where it takes a 2nd exposure without opening the shutter to subtract the noise from that dark frame from the first exposure. You can take a single dark frame on your own and do that in software, it will save you a lot of time and battery life if that is indeed what is happening (I dont' know if the D80 has this feature or not.)

    I recommend shooting with ISO400 or even 200, at long exposures 800 on up will cause a lot of noise.
     
  9. Dakarthanblu

    Dakarthanblu TPF Noob!

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    I like the second one; I have been out recently doing night photography--I love it! I'm still learning the quirks of it, though, and next time out I will employ Tv mode, as opposed to the bulb function. I will post a few nocturnal gems ASAP--I love acronyms.
     

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