There is a common misconception that beautiful photos of the night sky are a product of sleepless nights and you need to spend a lot of money on the device. But maybe you’re wrong: “Your only limit is your knowledge, not your wallet.” It was the advice of a friend of mine from Russia who created the beautiful astronomical picture ‘Tarantino Colors’. The following astrophotography tips may be obvious to you, but keep in mind that there are new people in astrophotography who can benefit from this information.
What do you need for astrophotography?
At a minimum you will need to have an astrophotography / astrophotography image that is a DSLR, a basic wide-angle camera lens, and a strong tripod. And let’s not forget it’s a remote timer to ensure there’s no vibration when shooting.
Generally, Full Frame cameras produce the best results because of the larger sensors, which offer a higher dynamic range and better noise performance than small sensors. Cameras like the Canon 6D, Nikon D750 and Sony A7S are an ideal example.
Here are some great lenses for astrophotography / astrophotography:
15-30MM F / 2.8 DI VC USD LENS
20MM F / 1.4 DG HSM ART LENS
24MM F1.4 AE LENS
Place sellection for shooting?
You can set up in your backyard, a balcony or any outdoor space covering a wide range of night sky
To find out the location of the galaxy you can use an application called Stellarium. Stellarium allows us to visualize the position of celestial bodies in an interactive panoramic image. One last thing to consider when planning a shoot is the weather. The weather may be unpredictable, so always check the cloud cover before you take a shot.
The settings on the camera are suitable for shooting astrophotography
+ Rule 500: In general, you want stars to be sharp unless you are shooting star trails. To avoid any noticeable star traces, use the 500 rule to calculate your maximum shutter speed. Max Shutter = 500 / focal length
For example, if you are using a 24mm lens on a full frame machine then: 500 / 24mm = 20.8 seconds
So, the maximum shutter speed you can use with a 24mm lens without getting noticeable star traces is 20 seconds.
+ The stars are the distant sun. If you want to capture their exact color, use white balance during the day. The camera can often see the colors of light blue, orange and sometimes dark red that your eyes will not see.
+ The camera lens needs to be in manual focus (MF) mode, because the stars are too dim and too small for the camera to automatically focus.
+ Take photos in RAW + JPEG large format. You can use JPEG to preview and process RAW words. Because stars are like high-contrast objects, optical aberrations in lenses are a leading element in spoiled photos. Many software packages can be edited somewhat for these software when editing in RAW format.
+ Lenses with a maximum aperture of about f / 2.8 can be considered as “large apertures”. However, in stellar photography, the difference in expressive power between f / 1.4 and f / 2.8 or f / 2.0 is larger than you think. To capture stars as dots from a fixed position, you need a wide-angle lens with exposure time set to 20 seconds or less. On a moonless night in the countryside, the standard ISO setting for f / 1.4 lens would be around ISO 800 to get a sufficient exposure in 20 seconds. On f / 2 and f / 2.8 lenses, this standard setting is about ISO 1600 and ISO 3200, respectively, to create images with rich color gradations, with little noise.