Star trails

Yogesh Sarkar

Administrator
Hi Yogesh,
Nadeem is shooting continuous locking down the shutter on his remote. This way even the best of the camera barring selected top levels like D5 and 1DX will fill the buffer. D3200 is the lowest in Nikon DSLR range and with low buffer and processor.
Henry
I understand. I do that too while shooting star trails with my Canon 60D, since I do not want any time gap between photographs and my Chinese intervalometer introduces at least 1 second delay.

Since each exposure is several seconds long, camera should have enough time to write the image onto even the slowest card and my 60D continuously writes to the card.
 

nadz11.ns

Super User
Hi nadz,
Never shoot timelapse with a normal remote but use an intervalometer. Your camera stops because the camera buffer gets filled after 100 pictures. Faster card will not help although it will take few more pictures before the buffer is filled. With an intervalometer you can shoot endless frames till your battery runs out.
I'll give you some tips for star trails.
First open up your lens aperture to max, yours I guess is f/3.5. Use ISO 3200 and shutter speed 30 secs. In the intervalometer set your interval time to 37 secs. or for safer side 40 secs. And take about 500 frames. (Actually when you set 30 secs shutter in camera, it shoots 32 secs and adding 5 secs for for writing to the memory card.)
Very important, keep your lens to manual focus and take your time to focus properly. Use a bright star using the live view magnified or any distance artificial light. Switch off the D-lighting, High ISO noise reduction and Long Exposure Noise Reduction. Also disable if there is any Lens correction. And I am sure you are shooting in raw.
Then I guess you know how to merge them in post.
If you have any difficulty let me know.
Henry
Thank you Henry for your suggestions.

I will get an external intervalometer for such shots. Currently, I am using a cheap Chinese remote release which keeps the shutter pressed continuously and takes only 100 shots in one go.

I kept ISO at 100 in the above shots. I will try to keep it a bit high. 3200 ISO in my camera is really bad with noise. As you said, it is at the bottom of the chain. haha.

I focused exactly the way you mentioned. I zoomed in on a bright star in live view and manually set focus. And also disabled all the noise reductions.

Since each exposure is several seconds long, camera should have enough time to write the image onto even the slowest card and my 60D continuously writes to the card.
I thought that too when I earlier posted my query here. But I found that unless I release the shutter on the remote, the images don't not being to copy onto the card. I tried to manually release the cable after some 90 images, but that took quite some time to clear the buffer (some 20-25 seconds) and that made a big gap in the trails.
 

hensil

Guru
Thank you Henry for your suggestions.

I will get an external intervalometer for such shots. Currently, I am using a cheap Chinese remote release which keeps the shutter pressed continuously and takes only 100 shots in one go.

I kept ISO at 100 in the above shots. I will try to keep it a bit high. 3200 ISO in my camera is really bad with noise. As you said, it is at the bottom of the chain. haha.

I focused exactly the way you mentioned. I zoomed in on a bright star in live view and manually set focus. And also disabled all the noise reductions.


I thought that too when I earlier posted my query here. But I found that unless I release the shutter on the remote, the images don't not being to copy onto the card. I tried to manually release the cable after some 90 images, but that took quite some time to clear the buffer (some 20-25 seconds) and that made a big gap in the trails.
Nadeem,
The problem with shooting stars is that they are very faint and the earth is moving. So single longer exposure does not build up exposure, rather you get a faint star trail. That's why a faster lens is needed, at least f/2.8. And also a high ISO settings. The trick is, if you are including the foreground, then take a separate foreground shot at low ISO. With the composited star trail you can use the masking tool to separate the star trails and then apply noise reduction only on the darker sky. Finally composite the foreground with the sky. All this needs Photoshop skills.
Henry
PS: This week is a new moon night, ideal for shooting milkyway. You have be away from light pollution.
Single exposure.
763502
 

nadz11.ns

Super User
Nadeem,
The problem with shooting stars is that they are very faint and the earth is moving. So single longer exposure does not build up exposure, rather you get a faint star trail. That's why a faster lens is needed, at least f/2.8. And also a high ISO settings. The trick is, if you are including the foreground, then take a separate foreground shot at low ISO. With the composited star trail you can use the masking tool to separate the star trails and then apply noise reduction only on the darker sky. Finally composite the foreground with the sky. All this needs Photoshop skills.
Henry
PS: This week is a new moon night, ideal for shooting milkyway. You have be away from light pollution.
Single exposure.
Applying noise reduction only to darer sky! I will see how to do this. Thanks for the tip :grin:

I will be travelling to Kashmir and Ladakh in July. So I will try to capture trails and hopefully the Milky Way there.

Love the Pano shot :heart:
 
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