I bought a new compact camera a couple of days ago, a Canon SX120IS.
Tonight I put it on a fixed tripod and pointed up.
This is what I captured.
9 x 15 seconds
Contrast, levels and saturation in CS3. The image was cropped to remove some amp glow from the upper left hand side.
Now...if I was serious, I would have just kept on taking images, (50 or 60 or more), and the image would have come out so much smoother.
You DON"T need expensive gear to start out in this hobby.