Shooting the moon


UncleFai

Senior Member
Mar 10, 2010
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#1
Asking the experts:

I have been trying to photograph the moon. But hor, even with similar equipment (OK lah, mine more cheapo), tripod etc. I can't seem to get the level of details that some folks from overseas can get... for example, this: V1 + FT1 + 384 + 20E - shooting of the Moon : Nikon 1 System Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

I know it is probably my poor skills, but I am wondering if it also not due to the light pollution here or the quality of the air. Even what I consider a very good shot by Bro Reno (http://www.clubsnap.com/forums/nikon/1051080-testing-nikon-v1-2.html) seems not to show the same level of details. Is it PP? Any views on this?
 

Cowseye

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Mar 7, 2010
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#2
One tip to start with, the rounder the moon, the lesser the details u gonna get. Start with a half eclipsed moon, your result should be better.
 

Mythmaker

New Member
Oct 8, 2011
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#3
The first problem is, you are using a Nikon. Without exposure simulation, shooting the moon is really a PITA for Nikon users.

When the moon is round and bright (no obstruction), f8, 1/125 and ISO100 is the average settings for a good exposure. Then start playing from there. Don't bother shooting when it's covered by the clouds. Settings have to be drastically tweak when the moon is not big and round, because the amount of light reflected by the moon is much lower.

Here's my moon:



It's not a 100% moon though. It's 99%. I missed the 100% timing again zzzz.
 

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Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2005
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#5
There are some problems...

1. High humidity
2. Light pollution

But you can overcome it a bit with lucky timing and some technique. Use spot metering.



 

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UncleFai

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Mar 10, 2010
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#6
This is about the best I got, all manual - Nikon V1 + FT1 + Kenko 1.4x TC + Kenko 2xTC + Nikkor 300mm f4, ISO 100, f13, 1/60sec, 0EV. Manual focus. Quite a bit of PP (not good at it, hope didn't screw it up)



I fixed ISO to 100 and aperture to f13 and played with various shutter speed. Thanks Ortega for the tip. Will try f16 next.

Getting the "pimples" on the rough and shadowy side is not the issue. The problem is getting all the details I the smooth surface side. If you compare the DPreview link in my first post and all the moon shots posted here (which are all good, don't get me wrong), the details on the "smooth" side is still not as good according to my eyes.

PS: the lens is "naked" - no filter. I manual focus every shot. Took about 15 shots and this is about the best one. Whole setup on a tripod and a gimbal head. Timer delayed release.
 

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UncleFai

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Mar 10, 2010
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#7
Mythmaker said:
It's not a 100% moon though. It's 99%. I missed the 100% timing again zzzz.
Yesterday was the 15th day in the Chinese lunar calendar, supposedly the "full moon" but actually the moon is even rounder on the 16th day (full moon according to the Indian calendar, I believe). If tonight no cloud cover, you should be able to get your 100% moon.
 

cichlid

Senior Member
Dec 2, 2006
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#8
This is about the best I got, all manual - Nikon V1 + FT1 + Kenko 1.4x TC + Kenko 2xTC + Nikkor 300mm f4, ISO 100, f13, 1/60sec, 0EV. Manual focus. Quite a bit of PP (not good at it, hope didn't screw it up)



I fixed ISO to 100 and aperture to f13 and played with various shutter speed. Thanks Ortega for the tip. Will try f16 next.

Getting the "pimples" on the rough and shadowy side is not the issue. The problem is getting all the details I the smooth surface side. If you compare the DPreview link in my first post and all the moon shots posted here (which are all good, don't get me wrong), the details on the "smooth" side is still not as good according to my eyes.

PS: the lens is "naked" - no filter. I manual focus every shot. Took about 15 shots and this is about the best one. Whole setup on a tripod and a gimbal head. Timer delayed release.
Hi, I think your moon is slightly under exposed, may be you want to increase the exposure a bit more.
 

Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2005
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#10
Try without the 2x TC - usually 1.4x is ok, but 2x kills the details.
 

Mythmaker

New Member
Oct 8, 2011
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#11
This is about the best I got, all manual - Nikon V1 + FT1 + Kenko 1.4x TC + Kenko 2xTC + Nikkor 300mm f4, ISO 100, f13, 1/60sec, 0EV. Manual focus. Quite a bit of PP (not good at it, hope didn't screw it up)

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7276/7047982979_418ff01b13_b.jpg[/mg]

I fixed ISO to 100 and aperture to f13 and played with various shutter speed. Thanks Ortega for the tip. Will try f16 next.

Getting the "pimples" on the rough and shadowy side is not the issue. The problem is getting all the details I the smooth surface side. If you compare the DPreview link in my first post and all the moon shots posted here (which are all good, don't get me wrong), the details on the "smooth" side is still not as good according to my eyes.

PS: the lens is "naked" - no filter. I manual focus every shot. Took about 15 shots and this is about the best one. Whole setup on a tripod and a gimbal head. Timer delayed release.[/QUOTE]

Unless you are using a FF, f16's diffusion will make it even worse.

Tonight is 100% moon (according to google) or 99% moon (according to NEA). Will shoot for both nights and hopefully get a good shot >.<
 

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#12
Tonight is 100% moon (according to google) or 99% moon (according to NEA). Will shoot for both nights and hopefully get a good shot >.<
I don't see what is with the obsession between a 99% illuminated full moon and a 100% one. :bsmilie:

But FYI, the moon is fully illuminated on 2012-04-07 T 03:19 +8 (Singapore Standard Time (SST)).
 

Dec 11, 2010
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#13
9V-Orion Images said:
I don't see what is with the obsession between a 99% illuminated full moon and a 100% one. :bsmilie:

But FYI, the moon is fully illuminated on 2012-04-07 T 03:19 +8 (Singapore Standard Time (SST)).
huh?! can someone tell me what's the diff between the 99% n 100% illumination?
 

Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2005
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#14
Prince Photogenic said:
huh?! can someone tell me what's the diff between the 99% n 100% illumination?
It means that due to the angle that we see the moon from singapore, we will not get a full 100% view
 

UncleFai

Senior Member
Mar 10, 2010
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#16
Best attempt tonight...

Nikon V1 + FT1 + 300mm f4, ISO 200, f8, 1/20 sec, 0EV



Nkon V1 + FT1 + 300mm f4, ISO 100, f8, 1/20 sec, 0EV


Lessons learnt:

1. I had thought the the TC would bring me more details. WRONG! Ditched the (cheapo) TC as suggested by Rashkae, and let the 300mm f4 do its magic! The AF-S (vs my manual focus using the TCs) was spot-on! Of course cropping means I lose pixels, but I gained details.

2. f8 is the best for my Nikon V1. I tried f10 and above - diffraction sets in and the same focus lock results in a slightly blurry picture.

3. "Expose to the Right" - the histogram will reveal a HUGE bump on the left coz most of the sky is black. But there is a small hump to the right that is actually the details of the moon. Chose my exposure such that the right bump is off to the right without clipping of the highlights.

4. Tried several things in PP. Too messy to detail but it gave the best results of my moon shots so far.

Thanks to everyone for tips and motivating me to try and try. I am sure mine is the not the best moonshots in the world (NASA probably has much much better ones) but with the equipment I have, and the whole process that I so enjoyed, I am happy.
 

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An drew

Senior Member
May 27, 2005
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#17
UncleFai,
Now that you have managed to capture the moon so well you should go for the sun too. :cool:
 

UncleFai

Senior Member
Mar 10, 2010
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#18
UncleFai,
Now that you have managed to capture the moon so well you should go for the sun too. :cool:
I basically an experimenter. I may try - if I find a safe enough ND filter.

On the other hand, I saw on DPReview someone manage to shoot Jupiter and its moons with his V1! I am super excited... my next project :)
 

An drew

Senior Member
May 27, 2005
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#19
I basically an experimenter. I may try - if I find a safe enough ND filter.

On the other hand, I saw on DPReview someone manage to shoot Jupiter and its moons with his V1! I am super excited... my next project :)
Wow, Jupiter or Saturn sounds great! Really cool. Just kidding about the sun, don't hurt your eyes or sensor. BTW how many stops of ND would be needed?
 

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Cowseye

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#20
An drew said:
Wow, Jupiter or Saturn sounds great! Really cool. Just kidding about the sun, don't hurt your eyes or sensor. BTW how many stops of ND would be needed?
I shot the sun once, at the highest F-stop and fastest shutter speed on my ex 150-500mm. I found a crack on the egg yolk. No ND btw.
 

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