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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Astronomy & Celestial 
Thread started 31 Jul 2011 (Sunday) 17:42
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Going to death valley - gear advice

 
barrett14
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Jul 31, 2011 17:42 |  #1

I am going on a photo workshop to Death Valley next year. The instructor recommended that you bring a fast, wide angle lens like a 16-35L 2.8 to use for celestial photography.

I am using a 5D2 (lenses listed below...).

Can I get away with using my 24-105 for wide angle? I know it isn't "fast" at 4.0 but I don't want to go drop a ton of money on a lens that I feel like I won't ever use outside of this workshop. I know renting is another option but if what I have will work I would rather just go with that. I have done some landscape work and have never really felt like 24mm wasn't wide enough (was shooting 15mm on a crop body actually but they equate to be about the same).

Also off topic from celestial - he also recommended you bring a fast telephoto... once again I only have the standard 70-300 IS USM.

Thanks in advance


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barrett14
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Aug 01, 2011 13:09 |  #2

I guess the real question would be, whats the minimum aperture I would need to get good results?


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SteveInNZ
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Aug 01, 2011 17:29 |  #3

I think that you'll be fine with what you have. The 24mm is plenty wide enough on a FF camera.
Sure, the faster the better but you're in a dark place and you have the option to bump the ISO if you really need to.
Even if you find that you fall in love with astrophotography, you'll get more benefit from spending your hard-earned on things other than a faster wide angle.


"Treat every photon with respect" - David Malin.

  
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Toxic ­ Coolaid
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Aug 01, 2011 18:37 |  #4

You may take a look at the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X 116 Pro DX around $650, way less than a L series but takes very nice pictures. A big restriction will be the movement of the sky (I know technically the Earth's rotation) The faster, the wider, the better.




  
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Snydremark
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Aug 01, 2011 18:42 |  #5

Lots and lots of water :)

I suspect you'll find yourself limited a bit by the 24-105; but it should serve for practice. If you find that you truly enjoy astrophotography and are going to DO it quite a bit, you might check into the Tokina mentioned earlier. Just for the duration of a workshop, I'm not sure I'd sweat it.

An alternative would be to simply rent a wide/fast lens from LensRentals or one of the other rental agencies.


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"The easiest way to improve your photos is to adjust the loose nut between the shutter release and the ground."

  
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barrett14
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Aug 01, 2011 19:02 |  #6

I would love to get into astronomer photography the only problem is I am in fort worth Texas and from what I understand, is 3 hours to a good location.


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BLD_007
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Aug 02, 2011 00:40 |  #7

Snydremark wrote in post #12859899 (external link)
Lots and lots of water :)

Beat me to it lol. Yea, lots of water and tell people where you are going to be. Take a GPS and extra battiers for your GPS.


Glass: 8-15 f/4.0L | 16-35 f/2.8LmkII | 24-70 f/2.8L | 70-200 f/2.8L mkII | 100 f/2.8L Macro | 300 f/2.8LmkII
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Tdragone
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Aug 18, 2011 00:39 |  #8

If you're not going to buy one; I HIGHLY recommend borrowlens.com! The faster the lens the better if you're trying to get something like the milky way with no star trails. F4 is okay.. but a 2.8 or 1.8/1.4 lens would be better!


-Tom Dragonetti
Spyder Holster + 1Dmk IV, 50D, G11
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CaptainTonus
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Aug 18, 2011 16:44 |  #9

barrett14 wrote in post #12853935 (external link)
I am going on a photo workshop to Death Valley next year. The instructor recommended that you bring a fast, wide angle lens like a 16-35L 2.8 to use for celestial photography.

I am using a 5D2 (lenses listed below...).

Can I get away with using my 24-105 for wide angle? I know it isn't "fast" at 4.0 but I don't want to go drop a ton of money on a lens that I feel like I won't ever use outside of this workshop. I know renting is another option but if what I have will work I would rather just go with that. I have done some landscape work and have never really felt like 24mm wasn't wide enough (was shooting 15mm on a crop body actually but they equate to be about the same).

Also off topic from celestial - he also recommended you bring a fast telephoto... once again I only have the standard 70-300 IS USM.

Thanks in advance

Renting is going to be your best option. The 24-105 will be wide enough, and you will get some nice shots using it, but it's nothing compared to what you COULD get with something faster and wider. It makes a BIG difference. If you need advice on a good place to rent something, you can shoot me a PM.

Toxic Coolaid wrote in post #12859864 (external link)
You may take a look at the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X 116 Pro DX around $650, way less than a L series but takes very nice pictures. A big restriction will be the movement of the sky (I know technically the Earth's rotation) The faster, the wider, the better.

The Tokina 11-16mm is meant for APS-C sensors (crop sensors), and will only work on a FF camera at 16mm.


5D Mk2 + BG-E6 | Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L | Canon EF 70-210 f/3.5-4.5 USM | 580EX II | Manfrotto 3021N/3030/RC2 | B+W Filters

  
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barrett14
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Aug 18, 2011 16:56 |  #10

I recently purchased a 16-35 II so that should be good... I think I am all set?


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CaptainTonus
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Aug 18, 2011 17:11 |  #11

barrett14 wrote in post #12959219 (external link)
I recently purchased a 16-35 II so that should be good... I think I am all set?

Yes. You can also try using your 50 1.8 for some photos. You will get star streaks much faster with a longer lens, makes for a neat effect.


5D Mk2 + BG-E6 | Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L | Canon EF 70-210 f/3.5-4.5 USM | 580EX II | Manfrotto 3021N/3030/RC2 | B+W Filters

  
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archer1960
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Aug 21, 2011 14:50 |  #12

CaptainTonus wrote in post #12959168 (external link)
Renting is going to be your best option. The 24-105 will be wide enough, and you will get some nice shots using it, but it's nothing compared to what you COULD get with something faster and wider. It makes a BIG difference. If you need advice on a good place to rent something, you can shoot me a PM.

The Tokina 11-16mm is meant for APS-C sensors (crop sensors), and will only work on a FF camera at 16mm.

Well, it will work on ff, but will vignette.


Gripped 7D, gripped, full-spectrum modfied T1i (500D), SX50HS, A2E film body, Tamzooka (150-600), Tamron 90mm/2.8 VC (ver 2), Tamron 18-270 VC, Canon FD 100 f/4.0 macro, Canon 24-105 f/4L,Canon EF 200 f/2.8LII, Canon 85 f/1.8, Tamron Adaptall 2 90mmf/2.5 Macro, Tokina 11-16, Canon EX-430 flash, Vivitar DF-383 flash, Astro-Tech AT6RC and Celestron NexStar 102 GT telescopes, various other semi-crappy manual lenses and stuff.

  
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tonylong
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Aug 21, 2011 18:02 |  #13

barrett14 wrote in post #12959219 (external link)
I recently purchased a 16-35 II so that should be good... I think I am all set?

New to this thread, but yes the 16-35 and the 24-105 should be a great combo for night skies! Your only difficulty will be if you aspire to get moon shots. I spent four nights this week "shooting the moon" until last night it hit the half-moon stage. I used the 100-400mm lens with a 1.4x TC on my 1DM3 and got some real nice shots, since we had nice clear skies here in town, but even then with 560mm "reach" I had to closely crop the shots to bring out the detail.

But for starry skies I'd say offhand that your two wide lenses would cover a lot with your 5D2.


Tony
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CaptainTonus
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Aug 21, 2011 20:34 |  #14

archer1960 wrote in post #12973208 (external link)
Well, it will work on ff, but will vignette.

Vignette is minimal at 16mm, but at 11mm it's quite noticeable. Most of your shots wouldn't be usable without serious cropping.


5D Mk2 + BG-E6 | Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L | Canon EF 70-210 f/3.5-4.5 USM | 580EX II | Manfrotto 3021N/3030/RC2 | B+W Filters

  
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Going to death valley - gear advice
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