Those who have read this blog over the years know that I have a particular fondness for shooting images of the moon and planets with telephoto lenses. Having sold off my magnificent 300mm F4 AFS and TC17e teleconverter, I really don’t have the equipment any more for such adventures. But that has not stopped me. The Saturn images I got last time I shot the night sky kind of blew my mind … but I thought I’d take a shot with the 70-300VR and see if the Kenko 2x teleconverter was compatible for moon shots.
I’m sorry to say that I really could not get clean images. I needed high ISO just to get a reasonable shutter speed after losing 2 full stops to the Kenko, so I eventually removed it and shot the moon with just the 70-300VR from tripod this time with VR off.
The result is very pleasing …
Click on that image to see it in full glory … it’s more or less a 100% crop. I processed it aggressively, which drew out some grain, but I still like it. Lots of detail for an almost full moon.
Then I turned my attention to Jupiter. I first shot it with the moon’s setting and got a really dark image. Then I reset to shoot at planet settings, which unfortunately blows out the planet’s disk, but does find the moons. When I got these into CS5, I had the rather brilliant idea of combining them into an HDR image that looks way better than anything I’ve ever shot before.
I confirmed the location of the moons with the Juplet and added that info into the image. I am always impressed to find the moons right where they are supposed to be :-) … and remember that this is a simple consumer lens that I paid $400 for used …
Shooting the night sky is extremely pleasurable … I need a small telescope :-)