Saturday, January 30, 2010


It is a clear but cold (-4C!) night tonight and a full moon is shining. I thought I would try to take a picture of it using my £29 Aldi spotting scope and £25 eBay bargain digital camera. It made a nice change from trying to figure out how to interface my radio to my new computer.

The digiscoping adapter I got from Scopes'n'Skies certainly helped with holding the camera in position and the infra red remote control I managed to get for the camera meant that I could fire the shutter when everything was steady. It's not bad for a first attempt but I'm sure it ought to be possible to get the image a bit sharper.

My camera tripod is really poor and hard to adjust so you have to point past the object and then hope it settles back with it in the centre. This normally takes a few attempts. But the main thing is that focus is quite critical and it's hard to tell when you have got it exactly right using the little screen on the back of the camera.

There was a bit of colour fringing on the original image - purple at the top and green at the bottom. Well I suppose you can't expect perfection with £29 optics. I eliminated it using the simple expedient of getting IrfanView to convert the image to greyscale.

It would probably be more interesting to photograph a partial moon when you could see detail emphasized by shadows along the terminator. So, weather permitting, I hope to try to take some more Moon photos later.
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