Trees for birds at Zoo Heidelberg
Waxing gibbous moon on 25.05.2018
Since I was not able to get a better quality shot of the moon with my current camera and objective, I tried using binoculars and a smartphone instead. Finding the right settings and focusing were much easier since the moon appeared larger on the screen, but working with the phone was quite uncomfortable since I had to use the tripod and the display was pointing downwards.
The first image is stacked from a one-minute video with 1888 frames. I used PIPP to crop and the frames and Affinity Photo to stack and post process. The video’s resolution is much less than E-PL7 sensor’s, and the moon does not appear much larger, but more details are visible.
The second image is a stack from four JPEGs (1/1000 sec. f/1.7 4.2 mm ISO 50 B) and was processed like the video. Unfortunately, I did not have enough time capture more frames, and I had to add extra noise reduction in Affinity Photo. The moon is more prominent since the resolution is better, but the image quality is not better due to the small number of frames. I will try a different photo application, with better options for taking a series of photos, in the future.
The third image is a one taken with PEN E-PL7 and 45 mm objective for comparison. The photos taken with smartphone and binoculars show a clear, and I hope that I can get even better quality by switching to RAW and having a decent amount of frames to stack.
Unfortunately, the weather seems to favour half moons. There have not been many clear nights, and when I was finally able to get out to do some photography, the moon was in the same phase as last time. I missed a crescent moon in between because it was on a work day and I had to get to bed early.
I tried to improve the quality of the shot, but this seems to be the best I can get out with 45 mm lens. Even with 2x cropping factor, it does not have a sufficient magnification. Focusing on the tiny but bright moon is difficult.
The sky was mostly clear early on the last evening of 2017 providing a good view on the moon before the fireworks started.