Need advice on long lens for shooting UFOs (Min. 500mm mirror or 100-400mm APO)

Started Jan 11, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Need advice on long lens for shooting UFOs (Min. 500mm mirror or 100-400mm APO)
Jan 11, 2014

I'm going on a scouting trip and have the Sony 77/99. I've also got the Min 80-200 HS and 200mm HS prime as my longest lenses. Shooting conditions will generally be at night and I'm trying to capture moving and/or stationary lights in the sky that are 1/2-2 miles up in the sky.

It seems the biggest problem is that I'd need a fast lens and/or pump up the ISO so I can get a fast enough shutter speed to avoid blur. I'm also guessing that I would have to resort to MF since most lenses tend to hunt in low light conditions. However, if the craft is giving off enough visible light, it would be similar to taking a shot of city lights or a tower beacon light, but a little more challenging since they're generally not stationary for long.

Having said all that, I'm thinking about the Minolta 500mm mirror or the Min 100-400 APO. I have the 100-300 APO and it's just OK, but I've heard the 100-400mm is a bit better.

The other thought is that maybe the 200mm prime would work and I could just crop the images as needed. I know the 200mm is fast and very sharp. Might be good enough.

Maybe it's a long shot (haha), but does anyone have any advice about a-mount lenses for this application?

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1500 years ago, everybody knew that the Earth was the center of the universe. 500 years ago, everybody knew that the Earth was flat. And 15 minutes ago, you knew that people were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll know tomorrow. -MIB

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