Thursday (06-December-2012) — New Jersey

Backyard Late Autumn Early Morning Sky: Last Quarter Moon

It has been a long, but mainly productive day. I got up very early to get a picture of the last quarter moon. I wanted to try out photography of the moon through a 500 mm telephoto lens using the Nikon 1 V1 camera. Because of the smaller size of the image sensor vs. a 35 mm (FX in the Nikon digital world) the effective field of view with this setup is equivalent to using a 35 mm camera with a 1350 mm lens (~2.7x). Since the N1V1 camera does not have a mirror (the mirror in a DSLR needs to move out-of-the-way when taking pictures) and has an electronic shutter mode — there is no mirror slap or shutter motion when taking pictures. This is important when taking pictures through large telephoto lenses where any motion or vibration will blur the image. I had hopes that this would help to get a sharp image of the moon. One limitation with the N1V1 with the FT1 adapter is that it can only autofocus through the center autofocus sensor. For this image I manually focused the lens (and set the camera to manual focus so it would not try to autofocus before releasing the electronic shutter). I used the remote (IR) shutter release so I would not be adding additional vibration to the system. I was impressed with the result. I did take several images trying different settings, and this was one of the better ones.

Last Quarter Moon, Late Fall in New Jersey. Image taken with a Nikon 1 V1 camera, FT1 adapter, and 500 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 100, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec). (David J Mathre)
Last Quarter Moon, Late Fall in New Jersey. Image taken with a Nikon 1 V1 camera, FT1 adapter, and 500 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 100, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec). (David J Mathre)