Which FF camera for night photography on a budget?

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BirdShooter7
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Which FF camera for night photography on a budget?
1 month ago

I initially posted this on the Canon FF forum but am now thinking that this forum might have been a better place to ask.

Lately I have become interested in night photography and it has quickly become apparent (I think) that APS-c isn’t really the best way to get the results that I am after. For this reason I am in the process of looking into a full frame camera. Since I am already invested in Canon lenses I would probably want to stick with a Canon camera.

Here is an example of the type of photo I am interested in taking:

http://www.pbase.com/dadas115/image/156792062

In this example I used an ISO of 1600 and a shutter speed of about 1 minute. The lens was the EF-s 10-22mm at 10mm and wide open at f/3.5. I played around with a lot of different exposures when taking this photo and found that if I used lower ISO or shorter exposure times the stars just really didn’t show up like I wanted. The problem with the 60 second exposure time is that the stars and Milky Way start to smear. The other problem is that I like to have a little color in the rocks in the foreground. Unfortunately, the high ISO performance on the 7D isn’t the greatest and at ISO 1600 I am getting a lot of noise in the rocks.

In addition I find that I need a really wide lens to capture as much of the Milky Way as I want. I had a Sigma 30mm f/1.4 lens with me for this photo but on the 7D the field of view is just way too narrow to get the sort of shot I am after.

What I think I need is a camera that does better at ISO 1600 or even 3200 so I can reduce exposure times. The FF body also would allow me to use a 14mm f/2.8L and 24mm f/1.4L that I have access to and give me the full field of view. Both of those lenses are MK1’s but I think they should give me an advantage over the EF-s 10-22.

So now with all that said, I will get to my question. My budget is pretty limited, especially considering that this is not a type of photography that I expect to make any money from. So while it would be great to run out and get a 5d3, the cost is just too high. The next obvious choice is the 6D but again a new one is just out of my budget unless there is some substantial advantage to it over a used 5D2 or a 5D. It looks like a 5D2 could be had for $1000 - $1200 on the used market for one in reasonable condition. It would be a stretch but I could swing the expense if there was a decent advantage to it over a used 5D, which looks like it is selling for $500 - $600. So is a 5D worth really looking at or would it just be throwing $500 away considering the type of photography I hope to do with it.

I am open to other options and appreciate any insights into gear for this type of photography.

Thanks,

Greg

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