D850 for astrophotography?

Started 6 months ago | Discussions thread
Bob in Baltimore
Bob in Baltimore Senior Member • Posts: 1,068
Re: D850 for astrophotography?

You need to add to your initial post on the astrophotography forum. Your question was very general and difficult to answer other than by asking more questions of you.

There is a lot of expertise over there that can help you with answers to more specific questions You thread here has filled in some details, but you need to lay it all out at once. (Saying you might want to "dabble" in AP, as you did over there, does not encourage one to ask you a lot of questions.)

What equipment do you have? (You didn't tell them, but it has come out in this forum.) Do you have an idea of how much you might be willing to invest in equipment? (There are so many options!) What kinds of objects are you wanting to photograph? Do you want to do star trails? The Milky Way? Nightscapes? Planets? Nebulae? Galaxies? Different equipment for different targets.

Most of the stuff showing up over there is using conventional lenses. Specialized telescopes for astrophotography don't come cheap. Many people start with a wide angle or telephoto lens on a DSLR like the D850 (my camera of choice) .

I got some terrific images of the Orion nebula and surrounding regions with a rented 200 mm lens and the D850, just by stacking hundreds of 1/2 second  exposures, with no tracking at all.


But I had to learn to use PixInSignt to process them properly. Photoshop was not up to the job. (Need to be able to do floating point math & specialized stretches.) It would have been better to have a tracker , which can be had from anywhere from $500 or so and up. I have my eye on a $1,200 or so system. My eye, but not my credit card!

I could not have captured even those simple shot with your Celestron. Too long a focal length and too slow (f/10). I would be astounded if it was capable of tracking well enough at that focal length. (It would be within the weight spec with a D850, but ...) Put another way, you probably need to spend more on a tracker than your entire telescope cost.

If you want things like the Orion region, or star clusters, it looks to me like you would be better off to pursue a tracker and your existing lenses (assuming they are reasonably fast. And not worry about using your Celestron.

But, again, it depends on what you want to shoot. If it's planets, it may be that shooting movies with that long focal length telescope and then stacking thousands of frames using specialized S/W would do the trick. Then the question is, what is the optical quality of your scope. The folks over there in Astrophotography Talk can tell you. I don't know, but at its cost, i would be skeptical. (The lens I rented for Orion casts several thousand dollars.)

Good luck!

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Bob in Baltimore

 Bob in Baltimore's gear list:Bob in Baltimore's gear list
Nikon D850 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105mm F2.8G IF-ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm F1.4G Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G +1 more
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