A new toy…I mean tool…

A new toy…I mean tool…

I have always had a fascination with the night sky and with the advances with digital photography, photographing it has become something I am doing more often. I have been limited to shooting 30 second exposures due to star trails are present at longer exposures. About 2 weeks ago I ordered a tracking base to shoot longer exposures. The tracking base rotates with the Earth to allow longer exposures. Well, it was defective and I sent it back. I decided as well to go with a different brand because the original one was rather large and bulky. The new one, an iOptron Sky Tracker, arrived Wednesday. It was cloudy that night so I tried it Thursday. Everything was streaked! After breaking down and reading the instruction manual, a male not reading the instruction manual imagine that, I figured out I was shooting as if I was in the Southern Hemisphere. I set it right last night, aligned it to Polaris, and started shooting. It worked great!

The purpose of wanting longer exposures is to be able to get greater detail by allowing in more light from space while not getting the streaking of longer exposures. I am also able to shoot at a much lower ISO, in this case 400 vs 3200. I can shoot at a better f-stop for detail as well, in this case f8 vs f4. This exposure was 12 minutes and 1 second! I am learning to rethink and adjust my processing as well to better enhance my results.

Tamron 10-24mm Di-II lens on a Canon 70D, Bulb Mode, f8, ISO 400, 721 second exposure, Sirui R4214X tripod as a base, iOptron Sky Tracker, processed in Lightroom CC.

Milky Way 090415a copy

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