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Thread: Is There A Minimum ISO Level Needed For Astro Photography

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    Default Re: Is There A Minimum ISO Level Needed For Astro Photography



    It seems like you're going to be saving up. So along those lines, I would suggest saving just a bit more so that you can go from the 500D to the 600D, the T3i. It has one of the lowest noise sensors in the Canon T Series. It also has an articulating screen which makes a huge difference in your ability to focus and frame from the camera. Additionally it will hook up to any 64-bit computer. And right now you can get a T3i camera body for less than $300. I have owned the 500D and I now own two 600Ds. Being an older guy, and not being able to crane my neck very well, the jump to the articulating screen has made a very large difference.

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    Default Re: Is There A Minimum ISO Level Needed For Astro Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by TCampbell View Post
    And that is when the ISO being applied.
    I'd like to add to your very informative post.

    Outside of specialized applications, digital cameras (still and motion) generally have a "base ISO". It's the ISO equivalent of the unamplified sensitivity of the sensor (sometimes referred to as true RAW). This is typically 100 or 200 ISO, and everything else is the level of gain required to achieve a higher ISO equivalent.

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    Default Re: Is There A Minimum ISO Level Needed For Astro Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Lokifish View Post
    This is typically 100 or 200 ISO, and everything else is the level of gain required to achieve a higher ISO equivalent.
    If you are speaking of the "unity" gain then you are correct for Nikon cameras. For Canon cameras, the unity gain is considered to be somewhere between ISO 800 and 1600.

    Looking for the best gain: Basically, it comes down to finding the ISO value from which the upstream read noise will swamp the downstream read noise. Any ISO value beyond this one has no additional benefit and only decreases Dynamic Range (as previously stated). Remember; ISO does not increase the sensitivity of the camera, increasing it doesn’t capture more light while decreasing dynamic range will hurt our images for instance in star color.

    Just some more sensor tidbits. Thanks to Tim for an excellent treatise on ISO and sensors.

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    Default Re: Is There A Minimum ISO Level Needed For Astro Photography

    I don't go under ISO 800 myself using a Canon DSLR
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