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Old 29-10-2012, 11:40 PM
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Eclipse 2012 testing...

Finally getting down to the business end of the gear I'll be hauling up to Port Douglas for next month's eclipse.

Here is a test shot from the rig I'll be using (right click, and "save image as" if you want to see a 2x HD version)

I have to say, I'm delighted with both the Canon 5D MKIII and 500mm L F4.0... the sheer lack of CA and excellent correction of this lens is *very* impressive.

Hope the weather Gods are happy on the day
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Old 29-10-2012, 11:42 PM
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Octane (Humayun)
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Stick a 1.4x teleconverter on it; the lens will handle the newer extender without any noticeable loss of image quality, and, you'll retain autofocus. Although, f/8 autofocus is coming in April for 5D Mark III.

I'm going simple. Tripod, camera and lens.

H
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Old 29-10-2012, 11:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Octane View Post
Stick a 1.4x teleconverter on it; the lens will handle the newer extender without any noticeable loss of image quality, and, you'll retain autofocus. Although, f/8 autofocus is coming in April for 5D Mark III.

I'm going simple. Tripod, camera and lens.

H
Nah..If I wanted more FL. I'd be packing the Astro-Physics 130.

Keeping it simple is good.

The extended corona is the main show IMHO, in fact, I might pack Canon's 135mm F2.0 prime as well
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Old 30-10-2012, 12:02 AM
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Crisp! What f stop was that taken at?

I spent yesterday morning setting up a Robofocus bracket on my FS-60 - will hopefully get a chance to do a similar test with my rig in the next few days (weather permitting in SEQld).

DT
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Old 30-10-2012, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidTrap View Post
Crisp! What f stop was that taken at?

DT
Metadata reads: 1/1600th @ F4.0
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Old 30-10-2012, 01:41 PM
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I went with a similar image scale. The corona near maximum will be fairly extensive. I have a 300 f2.8 with a 2x TEC giving me a 600 f5.6 unit on my D3.

I have included an image to show scale.
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Old 30-10-2012, 01:50 PM
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so Peter are you manually going to change all the setting or are you going to be running the canon from a computer?
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Old 30-10-2012, 02:08 PM
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so Peter are you manually going to change all the setting or are you going to be running the canon from a computer?
Manual.
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Old 30-10-2012, 02:20 PM
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Yes, similar scale here again. I'm using a Takahashi FS-60C (355mm) with a Baader ND5 film filter cell - and optional orange filter if I decide that white is uninteresting. The OM-D's in-body stabilisation is perfect as set to 350mm. This moon image is hand-held.
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Old 30-10-2012, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Haese View Post
I went with a similar image scale. The corona near maximum will be fairly extensive. I have a 300 f2.8 with a 2x TEC giving me a 600 f5.6 unit on my D3.

I have included an image to show scale.
600mm will probably be the sweet spot for the D3
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Old 30-10-2012, 03:16 PM
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Nice setups.

Are you using a filter for the 500mm?

I was planning to use my TEC110 which is about 600mm and a Baader solar flm filter (boring though) and 40D and D800E and 180mm F2.8ED.
Camera will also do ISO50 which may be handy. ISO50, is probably the same implementation on 5D3, is not a real ISO50 but an ISO100 divided by 2 in the firmware. So that means highlights are slightly more prone to blowout than ISO100.

Are you planning to shoot in manual mode or aperture mode or shutter priority? I am thinking keep ISO to 100 and vary aperture first and then vary shutter speed 2nd to reduce handheld blurs. I am going to be in Sydney so it will not get dark.

Greg.
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Old 30-10-2012, 11:20 PM
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Another eclipse setup

Here's my setup:

Tak FS-60 with field flattener (focal length ~370mm)
Robofocus - powered by 12V lithium battery from a RC glider
Nikon D800
Still a little bit of metalwork to go on the mount to achieve balance, so these shots were taken on a regular tripod.

Full Frame
100% crop straight out of the camera
100% crop with just a little sharpening in Lightroom.

ISO 100, F6.2, 1/500

With all this preparation from everyone, we're definitely tempting the weather gods!

DT
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Old 31-10-2012, 08:25 AM
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The Robofocus looks almost as big as the camera!

Nice results. What about tracking, are you panning manually? That's the bit I found that was distracting during lunar eclipse and Venus Transit.

A Vixen Polarie may be the go there.

Greg
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Old 31-10-2012, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbradley View Post
The Robofocus looks almost as big as the camera!

Nice results. What about tracking, are you panning manually? That's the bit I found that was distracting during lunar eclipse and Venus Transit.

A Vixen Polarie may be the go there.

Greg
The Robofocus bracket is certainly large! I had a "spare" motor, so thought it was better to use that system, rather than spend another $250 on the micro focuser.

I've got an EQ3 for tracking Greg - I've just got to move the mounting point for the scope forward to allow for the heavy tail end with a DSLR hanging off a 60mm scope.

DT
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Old 31-10-2012, 06:08 PM
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Agree Peter that is a superb result for F4! With no CA that is one less thing to worry about in post processing. I am using a second hand 6x7 400mm lens, very obvious CA even stopped down which I hope to manage the worst of in the post processing.
Ted
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Old 02-11-2012, 11:19 PM
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My mount - with apologies to those of you whom have some expertise in metalwork...

The counterweight clears the tripod leg by about 2mm at 16.5 degrees elevation. I've got a couple more ideas in store yet. I'd like to be able to leave that counterweight behind and lighten my checked baggage by 3.5kg... It certainly won't be accompanying me on an international eclipse chasing trip!

Another interesting fact I've learnt from this exercise. The robofocus draws more current when stationary, than when moving. I knew they actively held the focus position, but didn't realise the power draw went up. It's drawing 0.4 amp when stationary and 0.2 amp when moving. The 12V lithium battery I have is 2200mAH, so it should be enough for 2hrs of eclipse sequence. The motor also gets quite warm!

DT
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Last edited by DavidTrap; 02-11-2012 at 11:23 PM. Reason: added a bit
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