View Full Version : Completely new to Astrophotography

08-01-11, 02:58 PM

I'm completely new to photography with DSLRs and am looking for some gear to buy.

I think I've narrowed down the camera to a Canon EOS 1000D but the one I'm looking at doesn't come with a lense.

I have literally NO idea what to get, I just know I want to use this for astrophotography - starting with constellations and maybe moving on to nebula/galaxies/planets/moons so what lense would you suggest?

Want to spend as little as possible on the lense - but if you know of a good lense that costs a bit more, please suggest it!

Complete newbie here looking for some friendly advice.


10-01-11, 09:26 AM
I have been an amateur photographer all my life and went digital in 1997 but I have just started to play with Astrophotography - boy is it challenging.

Before you invest huge sums of money you must make sure that you can easily get to places where there is very little light pollution. I live in the country and even on what appears to be a clear night there are many sources of unwanted light - in my case it is a town 6 miles away and the slightest bit of moisture in the atmosphere gives rise to reflected light from street lights that are not directly visible from my house.

You will have to do your best to get good quality kit - a wide lens for the big shots of the Milky Way and, if your budget will stretch, a good long lens for the moon and perhaps a fuzzy shot of Saturn. get a really sturdy tripod. You will also need to do quite a bit of work in your digital darkroom.

A really super guy I worked with a few years ago won the World Astrophotographer of the Year in 2009. His kit must be worth over 50k and he emigrated to Australia in order to find somewhere without too much light pollution!

Good luck.

11-01-11, 09:56 PM
To be honest entry-level DSLRs (with ISO/image noise limitations) are not ideally suited to astrophotography; ISO and exposure time are always going to be a trade-off - even with a short focal length (and small magnification factor) you'll start to get noticeable star-trailing at relatively short exposures (15 sec upwards). The lens(s) need to be as fast as possible, with a lack of edge-distortion; you certainly need to check that a lens has a good physical infinity stop on the focus ring to get you somewhere close to infinity focal point - even then you'll need to fiddle to get true focus.
If you are interested in deep sky objects then you'll need to piggy-back the camera on a motor-drive tripod.