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Moon photos with Coolpix P1000


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#1
cgriffin

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This may be a good place to ask for some coaching on improving my moon photos. I am pleased with the quality I get of moon shots. I think I have hit the capability of the P1000 pretty well. Here's a link to a couple photos as an example of what I'm asking. moon | Flickr

 

The two that show lots of detail of the moon surface are what I can typically get. I find the Moon Mode gets as good of shots as trying to be more specific in A or S priority or manual. I generally leave the ISO in Auto, and the Moon mode generally sets around 1/320 - 1/500th sec shutter and usually F/7 or F/8 and I use autofocus. I generally zoom out far enough to almost fill the frame or I crop quite a bit. But I consistently get this level of quality, even without a tripod. I figure I've pretty much gotten to the limits of the P1000 technology and I'm quite happy with it.

 

With the eclipse this morning, I set up with with a tripod, tried the Aperture priority, ISO auto, and couldn't get an auto focus. I assume there wasn't enough light and contrast, so I shifted to manual focus. Still didn't get focus worth a darn. Tried the Moon Mode and got the same. Shifted to manual focus with Moon mode and it was the best I could do (see the two photos on the Flickr link) but I didn't think I was getting a very good focus to show details that I am accustomed to getting. I couldn't find any settings that gave me better detail and clarity than these two photos. When I try bumping the ISO up a lot higher, it gets grainy real fast.

 

So, my question is:  Are there settings I should be using that will allow me to get better detail and better focus in shots like this?  I suspect the low light and low contrast are the limiting factors. Have I hit the limit of the P1000 or are there settings I should be trying for better detail at higher zoom? I'll add that I still get a massive amount of appreciation when I posted these photos this morning of the eclipse, but I am yearning for better.

 

I am attaching one of the eclipse photos below, but the rest are on the Flickr link.

Attached Thumbnails

  • eclipse 11 19 21 DSCN6681B.jpg


#2
g4aaw pete

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They're all quite stunning.

I don't see how they'd be improved because:

 

1.The object is currently 400 Km away

2.Pictures have to be taken through the earth's atmosphere

 

I'd be more than happy with your moon images.



#3
krag96

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Your photos on Flickr are very good.  If that's what works for you and your camera, I wouldn't change anything.  The moon is a moving reflective orb in the night sky, you expose for it alone ignoring all other factors.  Shooting hand held that means relative fast shutter speeds, I shoot with a tripod at times simply because the lenses I'm using are heavy on a D700 or D750.  Nothing wrong with the level of detail you're getting, you could only get better with a longer lens.  Yes, air quality and humidity play a part, a crisp night is best.  Your focus is right on, the photos are crisp and clear, to accomplish any more would have to be done in post production where you might be able to sharpen them a bit more, tint, or move them onto another photo sized to suit your taste in either a day or night scene, Affinity Photo can do that.

 

My opinion, if you shoot at base ISO, spot meter the moon itself or choose a slightly slower shutter speed and open your lens a stop or two, the base ISO will let you crop or enlarge your photos more. 

 

 

Here's some links.  The first link from B&H has additional links in green which are well worth the read.

 

https://www.bhphotov...ograph-the-moon

 

https://youtu.be/_cGbbSx-Mug

 



#4
cgriffin

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Thank you to both!  I think I was expecting to get more of the detail of the moon surface that I get in my usual moon photos. But I'm thinking now that there is simply not adequate light to get those craters and features to show up under the eclipse situation. These comments are good to see.

 

krag96, what do you mean by 'base ISO'?  I do use spot focus on most of my shots. In some cases of low light or low contrast or macro I shift to manual. And thanks for the links.