#21  
Old 01-01-2012, 10:19 AM
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See here and decide

http://www.brayebrookobservatory.org...CD_SENSOR.html

The Canon 5D MII was not available but it easily beats the Canon 5D.


bert
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  #22  
Old 01-01-2012, 10:45 AM
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Interesting read Bert. I knew there was something really good about my bog standard 1000D
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  #23  
Old 01-01-2012, 11:42 AM
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Yes, fascinating info thanks Bert
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:41 PM
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I own the standard nikon d3100 and while it is a great camera it has had its problems. As far as support goes the canon cameras have far better tethering support, I think that higher end nikons also have this though. For me to get tethering to work I needed to buy a shoestring astronomy shutter controler. If you are thinking of connecting your camera to a telescope then a larger frame may not be better because you will need more equipment to combat vignetting.

I think for wide field astrophotography using a lens both cameras will serve you well and it is a holden ford competition where peoples opinions influence their decisions.
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Old 03-01-2012, 05:12 AM
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Originally Posted by obsidianphotos View Post
I'll pitch in. I'm a Canon man through and through. I own two Canons- a 1000D and the 60D you are considering. While I have no experience with Nikons I can tell you that I have a problem using the 60D for astro work. For widefield fixed tripod work it is great with it's high ISO capability (although I dream every night of owning a 5D Mark II for that sort of thing- Hurry up and release the Mark III Canon so that I can hopefully pick up the II cheaper) and the articulated LCD screen makes focus and checking results a breeze. BUT....with direct comparrison with the 1000D for mounted long exposure work the lowly 1000D wins hands down with it's star colour. The 60D produces horrible purple stars when shooting with exactly the same settings and lens/telescope as the 1000D. Now, I know this can generally be tuned out in post processing but I have yet to work out a way of removing it in camera.
That's my two cents. Just thought you would appreciate the opinions of someone who actually owns one of the cameras. As for purely brand related then all has already been said in terms of software mainly being available Canon only.
Cheers
Greg
Greg, many thanks for that. Appeciate your comments.

Eddie
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  #26  
Old 04-01-2012, 09:54 AM
Poita (Peter)
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I use the 5D MKII, 7D and Nikon D7000 and D90 regularly in work and for play

For normal photography the focus system in the D7000 absolutely slays the Canons in speed and accuracy. The twin SD card setup for the D7000 is also a big plus for me professionally.

The Full frame sensor of the 5D MKII is great in the studio, but it isn't as well suited to wildlife, sports and fast action. It is a brilliant camera for studio work, landscapes and portraits, and we utilise the video functions of it and the 7D to good effect at times as well.

The noise levels on the D7000 rival the full frame sensors, it really is a fantastic camera, and we find we are using it more and more than the Canon's when outside the studio. It's video functionality is far better than on the D90, but as with all DSLRs to do serious video work you need to spend a bundle on a focus rig to really utilise it fully. (Same for the 5D MKII and 7D)

For astro work, the D7000 will take fantastic images, but there is more options with software/hardware control for astrophotography with the Canons.

Really though, just get a dedicated CCD camera for astro work, even an old 2nd hand QHY8 (which can be had for under a grand) will beat them all out, with its cooled sensor and effectively zero noise and ease of attachment, software support etc.

A DSLR is a good choice if you already have one for terrestrial use, as you can just get an adapter and shoot away, but I wouldn't buy one just for astro use, I'd get a proper cooled CCD that doesn't have to be modified to add cooling, remove filters etc. etc. You will be much happier even with an inexpensive 2nd hand CCD than trying to make the DSLR work.
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  #27  
Old 04-01-2012, 10:14 AM
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Carl,


If I can find the time today, I will go hunting examples of high ISO images of the Pentax system with the equivalent level Canon system.
H
What is the equivalent level Canon to the K5? I have no idea of the K5 pricing/entry point.

There is an interesting discussion on noise here:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/fo...?topic=49200.0

Some of the links in the discussion are great reading.
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  #28  
Old 07-01-2012, 03:55 AM
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I use the 5D MKII, 7D and Nikon D7000 and D90 regularly in work and for play

For normal photography the focus system in the D7000 absolutely slays the Canons in speed and accuracy. The twin SD card setup for the D7000 is also a big plus for me professionally.

The Full frame sensor of the 5D MKII is great in the studio, but it isn't as well suited to wildlife, sports and fast action. It is a brilliant camera for studio work, landscapes and portraits, and we utilise the video functions of it and the 7D to good effect at times as well.

The noise levels on the D7000 rival the full frame sensors, it really is a fantastic camera, and we find we are using it more and more than the Canon's when outside the studio. It's video functionality is far better than on the D90, but as with all DSLRs to do serious video work you need to spend a bundle on a focus rig to really utilise it fully. (Same for the 5D MKII and 7D)

For astro work, the D7000 will take fantastic images, but there is more options with software/hardware control for astrophotography with the Canons.

Really though, just get a dedicated CCD camera for astro work, even an old 2nd hand QHY8 (which can be had for under a grand) will beat them all out, with its cooled sensor and effectively zero noise and ease of attachment, software support etc.

A DSLR is a good choice if you already have one for terrestrial use, as you can just get an adapter and shoot away, but I wouldn't buy one just for astro use, I'd get a proper cooled CCD that doesn't have to be modified to add cooling, remove filters etc. etc. You will be much happier even with an inexpensive 2nd hand CCD than trying to make the DSLR work.

Peter, thank you for that. No, I'm not buying specifically for astro work, it's for general use with some astro thrown in, including night scenes with terrestrial objects moon or light lit, and celestial objects visible in the sky. Low noise is important. I agree that a dedicated astro camera for dso is the way to go, but for wide field good shots can be had with DSLR's. Many of your points re Nikon D7000 are valid and worth serious consideration, though I know Canon has more astro software etc available. Oh, also the Nikon has 100% optical viewfinder.

Eddie

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  #29  
Old 07-01-2012, 10:48 AM
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I use a Nikon D40. It's a great unit for the price and uses the same sensor as the QHY8's. However, there is one feature of the Nikons that drive me insane, the 'star-eater' settings. See Covington's MODE 3 work-around, but it's fiddly: 'turn noise reduction on, and then turn the camera off while it's taking the dark frame after the main exposure. Naturally, you'll have to take a dark frame of your own (the same way) and do the subtraction on your PC when you process the pictures'.

With this in mind, I think that Canon's are better suited to AP.

See Christian Buil's and Michael Covington's articles for a full discussion on this issue:

http://www.covingtoninnovations.com/...508/index.html
http://www.astrosurf.org/buil/d70v10d/eval.htm

Logan.
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  #30  
Old 08-01-2012, 08:36 AM
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My first astro camera was a Nikon D70. At the time the hot camera was a Canon 10D but it was a bit outside my budget at the time.
Since then I have had several Canon 20Ds (I modified several myself) plus a Canon 40D.

It was an excellent camera. A few points about it though and these may no longer be valid as Nikon has obviously progressed a long way from then.

The D70 had the same sensor as the Starlight Express MX25C.
It did suffer from amp glow and it would be a purply corner that would grow to be quite extensive after about a minute.

So you had to use the noise control system which doubled exposure time. Or use library darks.

Nikon's RAW file system is not a true lossless file. A smoothing filter is applied regardless of settings that can damage faint stars. A lot was posted about this but I myself saw little difference. There was a physical workaround to prevent the filter from being applied which consisted of taking the imaging and then turning the camera off straight away. The firmware does an emergency save of the last image but no incamera processing is done.

I modified my D70 myself. It was a lot easier to do than the several Canon 20D's I modified.

Opening up the guts of both Canon 20Ds and Nikon D70 I could see why Canon has better amp glow performance. Nikon had the sensor on a metal block which had electronics on the backside of it as well. No doubt these electronics heat up when an image was taken.

The Canon had the sensor independent of any other electronics.

Also the Canon had several layers of metal shielding to prevent interference - again from internal electronic interference and possible external interference.

The Canon certainly seemed more sophicated in its guts and more attention to detail.

The Nikon had a handy cheap little infrared remote that I used to do long exposure images before I connected it to a computer.

A Nikon D70 is not apples to apples with a 20D Canon so needless to say the performance achievable from the 20D far rivalled the Nikon but I was quite happy with my little Nikon.

I think menus are more accessible in the Canon as well and more items could be modified but the Nikon was good too and is really more a matter of getting used to one over the other.

I used a 5D MK11 last week to image Comet Lovejoy and it was consdiderably better than my Canon 40D. The ability to go to ISO12600 versus ISO3200 and similar or better noise levels was terrific.

The 5D Mk11 also gave good colour rendition and an overall pleasing image.

But I found my 40D did better images of wildlife through my TEC110FL.

I put that down to the Bokeh effect where the backgound was more nicely blurred with the 40D. But that is a very specific use. So with my very limited experience of using a 5DMK11 for wildlife imaging I agree with the earlier posting that it may not be the perfect choice for that work.

So as previously mentioned the final use of the camera would be a mjor factor in determining which is best.

Also lenses is another factor.

I consistently read and have seen images that the Nikon 14-24 and 16-35 lenses are unrivalled and among the best ever made. Now you can get an adapter to make these work on a Canon (its about $300+) but I do not know if it affects the performance of these lenses.

For me that would be an important consideration. If you can get a 5D Mk11 to work with a Nikon 14-24 for astro work you probably are close to the perfect combo for widefield astro landscape type shots or time lapse.

The upcoming Nikon D800 may be a hard act for Canon to top. The 5D Mk111 when it finally comes out is likely to be a hot camera so keep that in mind - do you want to spend $2500 and have something that is considered outdated in 6 months time? There was a considerable jump in performance between a 20D and a 40D.

Canon seems to have been badly affected by the aftermath of the Tsunami and Thai floods. So 5DMk111 may be a while. D800 though should be soon.

Greg.
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  #31  
Old 08-01-2012, 12:48 PM
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Hi Eddie,
I thought I would weigh into this discussion because I currently use the D7000 and have had a D700 and also briefly a D3s. I can't comment on Canon or Pentax at all as I've only had one - my old film EOS 50.

In May last year I upgraded (yes upgraded!) from a D700 to D7000. I found that I wasn't using the D700 full frame capabilities with the lenses I had and couldn't afford to upgrade them, so I changed to the D7000. Since the D700 has been around for years it is somewhat outdated (we are all waiting for the D800!) and some of the features and technology found on that (and even the D3s) were put in the D7000. So effectively with the D7000 you are getting a cropped sensor version of the D700, with improvements!

I find the D7000 amazing for my widefield astro work. The high ISO is fantastic and I regularly use ISO 6400. However lenses are just as important because all I have is an f4 lens, but if I had an f2.8 I could take the same image with a lower ISO anyway. I've hired the Nikon 14-24 f2.8 and it certainly is amazing. It's my next lens, and even with my cropped sensor it will still give me 21-36mm effectively.

Another thing that I love with the D7000 is the battery capacity. It lasts for many hours which is especially good when doing timelapses. Not sure how the 60D rates for that though.

I also like how easy the D7000 is to use. All the buttons feel as if they are in the right spot and easy to get to. When I'm out shooting in the dark all the adjustments I need are reached by buttons and settings can be checked by the dim lit top view screen and I don't need to look at the menu on the main screen and ruin my night vision. It may be similar on Canon but I do like this feature on my D7000.

I know there's probably dozens that rate each higher, but here's a review that rates the D7000 higher after people have used them, not based purely on specs. http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-20031259-1.html

I understand the Canon has better video, but who uses that anyway?? I also imagine that you will be using it during the day, so work out what else you want to do with it. The D7000 is very fast with focussing (I think that was handed down from the D3s) which is great for wildlife, sport or subjects that need quick shooting.
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  #32  
Old 11-01-2012, 02:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Adelastro1 View Post
Hi Eddie,
I thought I would weigh into this discussion because I currently use the D7000 and have had a D700 and also briefly a D3s. I can't comment on Canon or Pentax at all as I've only had one - my old film EOS 50.

<Big Snip>
I understand the Canon has better video, but who uses that anyway?? I also imagine that you will be using it during the day, so work out what else you want to do with it. The D7000 is very fast with focussing (I think that was handed down from the D3s) which is great for wildlife, sport or subjects that need quick shooting.
Thanks Wayne, yes, I intend to use the cam on regular terrestrial use with astro as an added aside when I have time (Being mostly a nightshift worker....works against me!) The 7000 has reveiws and specs that are very favourable. However, I will do a little more research. Astro writers of the ilk of Michael Covington have no probs with Nikon. Lens are an issue I will have to look at, both cost and range.

Eddie
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  #33  
Old 11-01-2012, 08:17 AM
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I know it's in a different league, but here is some video from the new D4.

Link

Cheers
DT
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  #34  
Old 12-01-2012, 06:45 PM
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I know it's in a different league, but here is some video from the new D4.

Link

Cheers
DT
Interesting, but, has the video been compressed for U-Tube, if so then we can't see the full resolution

Eddie
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:06 PM
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Interesting, but, has the video been compressed for U-Tube, if so then we can't see the full resolution

Eddie
True, but the clarity, depth of field and dynamic range certainly impressed me.

The slow motion bit of the "idiot" going over the falls was rather impressive from a clarity and exposure. From the number of camera angles they played in the video, he either did that a number of times or they had a lot of cameras filming it!

DT
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  #36  
Old 16-01-2012, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by EddieDog View Post
Peter, thank you for that. No, I'm not buying specifically for astro work, it's for general use with some astro thrown in, including night scenes with terrestrial objects moon or light lit, and celestial objects visible in the sky. Low noise is important. I agree that a dedicated astro camera for dso is the way to go, but for wide field good shots can be had with DSLR's. Many of your points re Nikon D7000 are valid and worth serious consideration, though I know Canon has more astro software etc available. Oh, also the Nikon has 100% optical viewfinder.

Eddie

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One other thing I like is that Nikon has a 180 degree 10.5mm lens for their DX cameras, I don't think Canon has a true fisheye for its DX models. I could be wrong, but they didn't a couple of years ago when I wanted to buy one.
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