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Old 02-10-2008, 03:32 PM
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Quark (Trevor)
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Astro suitability of Canon EF 70-300mm F4-5.6 IS USM Lens

Greetings All,
Just seeking some advice on the suitability of the Canon EF 70-300mm F4-5.6 IS USM Lens for astro photography. I have noted some very nice wide field images on the IIS forums that have been taken with the higher quality and expensive L series Lens's.

I recently purchased a Canon 450D with a EF S 17-85mm IS USM Lens. At this stage I don't intend modifying the 450D. It will be used prime focus on a 16" F4.5 Newt and I want to see how that turns out before considering any mods.

I was thinking about the 70-300 for general use and wondered if anyone on IIS had used it piggyback for Astro work.

Regards
Trevor
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Old 02-10-2008, 04:12 PM
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dugnsuz (Doug)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quark View Post
Greetings All,
Just seeking some advice on the suitability of the Canon EF 70-300mm F4-5.6 IS USM Lens for astro photography. I have noted some very nice wide field images on the IIS forums that have been taken with the higher quality and expensive L series Lens's.

I recently purchased a Canon 450D with a EF S 17-85mm IS USM Lens. At this stage I don't intend modifying the 450D. It will be used prime focus on a 16" F4.5 Newt and I want to see how that turns out before considering any mods.

I was thinking about the 70-300 for general use and wondered if anyone on IIS had used it piggyback for Astro work.

Regards
Trevor
Hi Trevor,
I haven't used the 70-300mm but I did some widefield stuff with the 17-85mm lens.
Below is a link to a pic of the Large Magellanic Cloud done with the 17-85mm @ 85mm...
http://s231.photobucket.com/albums/e...300sec-Hig.jpg

Wasn't too impressed with the colour and resolution from this lens, camera was unmodded at the time.

Compare this with the same object taken with a 70-200mm f4L lens at 70mm...
http://s327.photobucket.com/albums/k...current=23.jpg

Camera was modded so unfair comparison perhaps, but resolution and colour correction of non H alpha stuff is still obviously better I reckon.
I think you would get similar performance to the 17-85mm with the 70-300mm lens but that's not based on first hand knowledge/experience though.
The 70-200mm f4L is probably the most cost effective entry into the L series of lenses. I got mine 2nd hand for $650 and I love it.
I'm sure you wouldn't regret purchasing it for day or night work.
Good luck
Doug
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Old 02-10-2008, 04:37 PM
Ian Robinson
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I hadn't concidered using the 17-85mm I got with my 40D kit for astro work , I had been put off my reports of image distortions and the EF-S issue wrt drop in filters.

But .... looking at those images .... none too shabby. Just need a LPF filter to go on the front of it .... as I have BAD light pollution due to Hg light at Charlestown (about 2 km away and over the hill) and Na lamps on the Pacific H/w (1 km away and in my los).
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Old 02-10-2008, 05:01 PM
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Quark (Trevor)
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Hi Doug,
Thanks for the reply and the comparison images.
No doubt the 70-200mm F4L is a better lens, that said I was pleasantly surprised by your comparison image with the 17-85mm lens, with an unmoded camera.

I have been following the deep sky forum for a while now and have been admiring the work you have done since getting the 70-200mm F4L lens.

DSLR astro photography is a whole new field for me, all of my deep sky work has been on 35mm film. I think it is pretty amazing what can be produced piggyback with the relatively standard Canon lens's such as your LMC image with the 17-85mm lens.

Thanks for the info.
Regards
Trevor
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Old 02-10-2008, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quark View Post
Hi Doug,
Thanks for the reply and the comparison images.
No doubt the 70-200mm F4L is a better lens, that said I was pleasantly surprised by your comparison image with the 17-85mm lens, with an unmoded camera.

I have been following the deep sky forum for a while now and have been admiring the work you have done since getting the 70-200mm F4L lens.

DSLR astro photography is a whole new field for me, all of my deep sky work has been on 35mm film. I think it is pretty amazing what can be produced piggyback with the relatively standard Canon lens's such as your LMC image with the 17-85mm lens.

Thanks for the info.
Regards
Trevor
Found another one taken with the 17-85mm lens, once again at 85mm and f6.3 I think. Not the best - far too much noise reduction too!
http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/a...se.php?a=39671
Cheers
Doug
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Old 02-10-2008, 05:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian Robinson View Post
I hadn't concidered using the 17-85mm I got with my 40D kit for astro work , I had been put off my reports of image distortions and the EF-S issue wrt drop in filters.

But .... looking at those images .... none too shabby. Just need a LPF filter to go on the front of it .... as I have BAD light pollution due to Hg light at Charlestown (about 2 km away and over the hill) and Na lamps on the Pacific H/w (1 km away and in my los).

BTW Ian, got my LPS filter dramas sorted out. Dealer sent me a nice big 72mm filter in exchange for the front filter that gave me all those internal reflection troubles a month or so back!
Hope to put it through its paces tonight, SA skies very clear at 5.50pm!!
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:09 AM
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Octane (Humayun)
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Trevor,

Don't bother with astrophotography shots using the Canon EF 70-300mm F/4-F/5.6 IS USM lens. It has terrible, terrible chromatic aberration.

I have both the IS and non-IS version. Both are terrible with stars.

Regards,
Humayun
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Old 09-10-2008, 12:06 PM
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Trevor,

Don't bother with astrophotography shots using the Canon EF 70-300mm F/4-F/5.6 IS USM lens. It has terrible, terrible chromatic aberration.

I have both the IS and non-IS version. Both are terrible with stars.

Regards,
Humayun
Humayaun, I wouldn't recommend this lens for astro either - too slow - but I disagree re CA. I have found this lens excellent with negligible CA, far less than many primes. Check out the photozone review of the lens, link below and quoted - "The lens produced a varying but quite low degree of chromatic aberrations (color shadows at harsh contrast transitions) at the image borders. The average CA pixel width remains well below 1 pixel at all focal length so it's usually nothing to worry about." Note that at FL below 200mm the CA is extremely low.

http://www.photozone.de/canon-eos/20...review?start=1
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Old 09-10-2008, 12:22 PM
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iceman (Mike)
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I've got the stock 70-300mm lens with my Canon 350D, and it does a reasonable job but it's slow and by no means the sharpest tool in the shed.
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