As you will no doubt have noticed I haven’t been particularly active over recent months. Work, weather and other interests have been taking up most of my time.
My son is due to make the trip from New Zealand to Canada to visit friends there and has been trying to decide what camera to take. Its come down to two cameras at the moment, that being the Sony A6000 and the new Nikon D55000, both with a standard 15 -55 lens.
Last night we were able to test the A6000 with a f-2.8 to 5.6 16-55mm and fixed aperture f2:8 30mm lens. The intention is to capture night-sky imagery whilst in Canada, the Aurora and various areas of the night-sky.
Below are a few images I have processed from the RAW files from the A6000. It was quickly apparent that the A6000 did provide good JPEGs but the RAW was much better for extended processing. You would still be able to get very good images shooting just JPEG as the headroom of the JPEGs was better than first indications.
The images show the area around the Southern Cross and up towards the Saggittarian Arm of the galaxy. The large Red/orange star is alpha scorpii more commonly known as Antares.
One of the things that is quickly clear is the difference between 16mm and 30mm. Not only is the 16mm giving a really nice field of view but even at 20 seconds exposure time there isnt a lot of star trailing evident, wheres as the 30mm shows a small amount of star trailing ans a degree of distortion in the final image is evident.
When processing the RAW files in Lightroom I used the Sony lens correction filters to flatten the image and reduce distortion.
The A6000 provides a good image and noise isn’t too serious at ISO 1600 in the RAW files, however Noise Reduction in camera for the JPEGS wasn’t overly aggressive, but in some of the higher ISO images the red channel was a little too strong. Below is the processed image of the above JPEG. There’s a large amount of headroom in the JPEGs, surprisingly so.
Hopefully in the next few days we will be able to repeat the process with the Nikon D5500 and see which camera has the goods.