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Thread: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

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    Default Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with



    Hi All,

    I'm a beginner is Astrophotography and considering getting a DSLR. I got some questions and wills tart with this. I will be working with my new 10" Dob A10. I know a refractor/Go To mount ect... is a better set up but I just want to play around with some imaging on planets and hop around the sky a bit. I am also interested in the Projection rather then Prime approach. I want to use my lens that I got. But you all would know more then me now on the pros and cons. I have been a graphic artist for over 25 years and got all the computer hardware/software so I am good on that end.

    So with this in mind I am looking for a DSLR under $450 any suggestions? Also I would be Video imaging with it and stacking or any other way? I have been using my smartphone (Google Pixel 2)with adapter with my smaller scope and had some nice turnouts of the moon with registax. But last night with Jupiter I couldn't get a decent video of it to stack and it was my second time with my new scope. I was using a 10mm 70 Deg with 2.25X Baader Q Turret barlow with great seeing conditions. It looked great with out the camera, saw the bands clear. But I could only get 4 points on Jupiter for alignment with Registax using 15-30 sec vids and they were not coming into focus no matter how much I played with the manual settings in Open Camera App

    Anyway I am open to any suggestions, but the one thing I am set on is using the Dob since I am invested with it now. Later on I will get a refractor.

    Thanks
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Canon.com, look in the refurbished part of the site.. lots of stuff in there...
    As I am budget limited right now.. I am condering the T6.. but there are some amazing deals on some heavy duty stuff ...
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Be aware that while most Canon and Nikon DSLRs of recent years are well-supported by AP Imaging Apps, some of the Lowest-end Models (ie: the Canon "M##" series) do not have the required features for "BULB" Long-Exposure nor a Shutter Trigger/Remote Port. Other older models may not have Video Capture Modes (although BYE/BYN and APT don't actually use Video but rather LiveView to provide the Planetary Imaging feature).

    You are generally safe with Canon's T3-T6, T2i-T7i (except T4i), 50D-80D series or Nikon's D5100-D5600, D7000-D7200, D300-D850, but NOT D3100-D3300,
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Try this one:

    https://www.amazon.com/Canon-T6-Digi...2&keywords=t6i


    It even includes a 'lens', whatever that is...

    And look into Backyard EOS for PC Camera control.
    Don

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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Without tracking capability your exposures will be limited to a fraction of a second or you will get star trails. Extra magnification with eyepiece projection will make that even worse. At prime focus you will not be able to reach focus because the focal plane is inside the focuser tube. However a Barlow can make it work, this is certainly easier than eyepiece projection. It will double or triple the focal length and limit the exposure time even more.

    Your only option is therefore taking video of planets and stacking them in Autostakkert. For that you ideally need 120 Hz video or faster, most DSLRs don't do that. A webcam will probably work better though in that case (very small FOV) you definitely need tracking.

    An equatorial platfom for your Dobwill facilitate the tracking but it is not accurate enough for long esposure AP; it will make tracking planets easier though. AP on a non-tracking Dob is not a very good selection criterion for choosing a DSLR and will most likely be disappointing. I recommend getting an EQ mount with a small Apo then choose a DSLR for long exposure times.
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Based on your stated requirements, a DSLR is really not your best option. Any one of the ZWO webcams will better fit your objectives of planetary (plus dabbling with DSOs) imaging, plus they are relatively inexpensive.

    They also put much less stress on your Dob mount making it easier to balance and move the scope to acquire your video. I think a DSLR attached through your focuser using an afocal approach will be just as frustrating as the pixel2.

    Cheers,
    JT
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Quote Originally Posted by jaetea View Post
    Based on your stated requirements, a DSLR is really not your best option. Any one of the ZWO webcams will better fit your objectives of planetary (plus dabbling with DSOs) imaging, plus they are relatively inexpensive.

    They also put much less stress on your Dob mount making it easier to balance and move the scope to acquire your video. I think a DSLR attached through your focuser using an afocal approach will be just as frustrating as the pixel2.

    Cheers,
    JT
    Thanks JT and all. Laast night I did do a test with a modified webcam. I used my old logitech c270 with out any filters or anything and bought a battery for my old laptop. I tried the set up and could see Jupiter and moons just like the size as most posted, But it was too bright with out any filters and was new to sharpcap. But I had great success with keeping it on the screen for at least two minutes. I think this is due to the Aperature bearing system, I adjusted it so I just was able to gently follow along with it plus being a graphic artist I am used to small prescision with my hands. It may be no Go To (which I plan on saving for a nice mount). But if that worked and was able to achieve focus then I think the ZWO wouldnt be a problem.

    I can see how the DSLR would be much bulkier and I would not have as much success moving by hand. I even found the modified setup I did much easier then using my Pixel2 with an adapter. So I think I am set on the ZWO plus could always return it if I did not have sucess. I am just worried about the focal plane, but with my test lastnight I think it should work out ok.

    Now my next step is to decide on the 120mc or 290, 224, 178 ect.. So is the bigger the sensor and resolution, the easier it should be or reversed? I just want to invest in a cam that I won't have the urge to upgrade soon after (buyers remorse) I figure my range would be around under $350 it since I got to get some more parts for my laptop and considering a possible upgrade to a laptop with usb 3.0.

    Thanks All
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Here is the photo I used with my old modified Logitech c270 webcam, basically I just got an old a circular piece to cut out the camera eyehole and double sided taped to it. Then popped it on the eyepiece tube and duct taped it steady and prayed. I used Sharpcap for the capture software.

    The camera max only at 15.x FPS, I couldn't get it hire but ended up with about 400 frames to work with and just put it in Autustacket2 then did some minor PScc adjustments. I got to learn still how to take an autustacket2 file and to put it in Registrax for wavelet, but I'll post on that forum. I was able to take about 1 minute recordings. I just sat on my chair looked at the laptop and adjusted the bearings so I could easily nudge the Dob as it was moving in the FOV to keep it somewhat in the middle.
    jupiter 6 12.jpg
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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    Good website for a DSLR would be https://www.mpb.com eBay would be a place to look as well.
    Canon 60D or Canon 450D is what I'd go with.
    Your only problem will be having to astro-mod the camera, which honestly isn't that hard, I did it with the Canon 450D had it done in less then an hour.
    Maybe should start a dslr modding service for astro-imaging maybe like $50 per camera.

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    Default Re: Looking for DSLR under $450 to start with

    I'm chuckling... we are on almost the same path...After I initially DuctTaped my c270 to the eyepiece part of an old Meade LPI, I had a C270 adapter printed from the thingverse:
    c270 adapted.jpg
    Captured this with my ETX, C270, SharpCap and Registax.. I think I over-exposed, then over-processed it.
    Jupiter.jpg
    It started out as about 60 of these:
    23_03_02 jupiter.jpg

    Then.. I looked at T6 and T6i on clearance refurb at Canon.com... and finally bought a used T3i on eBay... it arrives tomorrow, and a bunch of adapters etc.. arrive in the next few days. I hope it is as good as it looked...

    Only worry I have is the f15 and small FOV of the ETX.. guess I am going to learn a bunch soon
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