Night Time Focus Help

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by zbo2408, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. zbo2408

    zbo2408 TPF Noob!

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    I got my XSi 18-55 & 55-250 kit for christmas and things have not been as good as I had hoped ... I felt that my PowerShot A95 was holding me back and I thought when I picked up the XSi it would just instantly improve my photo quality... I guess that was a little fool hardy ...

    W/ my P&S I could go out w/ my tripod point at the stars set ISO to 200 (400 max but too grainy) open the aperture all the way, set focus too infinity and shoot away and take decent star pics ... w/ my XSi I cannot even find stars! lol auto focus freaks out in the dark and doesn't know what to do and when I'm squatting down to look threw the viewfinder I generally have to take the lens to it's widest setting and struggle to even find stars to bring into focus ...

    Is there a simple way to focus on the night sky? Why am I having soo much trouble with it?
    I have been surprised by how little noise my XSi is showing on 1600 ISO & looong exposures... but it actually seems to be too bright and washes the stars out... Any good advice (links to articles or explanations) for shooting the night sky?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    If you can't auto focus on the sky/stars...then just do what you did for your P&S and set the focus as infinity....or just manually focus the lens. As for being bright/washed out...that has to do with the exposure. If you think it's too bright, then just dial the exposure down and try again.
     
  3. AlexColeman

    AlexColeman TPF Noob!

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    You answered your own question. Set it at infinity, adjust exposure. Der.
     
  4. RebelTasha

    RebelTasha TPF Noob!

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    Ok this might seem like an even 'der' ish question but how do you set your focus to infinity on AF...?
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You could focus on something that is far away....and then do not activate the AF again. Or just switch it to manual mode.
     
  6. zbo2408

    zbo2408 TPF Noob!

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    Well on my P&S it had the sideways 8 infinity symbol so I knew where to put it... there are no focus position identifiers on the focus rings on either of my lenses so it is not a simple manner of oh just set it at infinity as on the P&S. Unless there is some secret tip for finding infinity ...
     

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