Meteor shower: infinity focus 'meter' question, other settings

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by tlovegrove, May 22, 2014.

  1. tlovegrove

    tlovegrove Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 3, 2014
    Southern California
    I would like to try to take some photos during tomorrow night's meteor shower with my GX7 if possible. I know I don't have the best kit for this, but I want to try for the fun of it.

    Newbie question about how to get it set to infinity focus. What does the red portion of the Panasonic manual focus meter mean? Is the red portion actually beyond infinity focus? Do I want the focus indicator at the very left edge of this, or where the white and red meet?

    View attachment 363045 pannymanualfocus (1 of 1) by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    My best lens option is probably my 25mm 1.4 wide open, and I guess it's best to set the WB to sun.

    Should I turn off settings like Highlight Shadow and i.Dynamic, so that the camera doesn't outsmart itself and try to compensate for the blackness of the sky and apparent under exposure?

    Should I use Long Exposure NR, or deal with noise in post processing?
  2. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    I.Dynamic (at least in the past) only applied to JPEG, so if shooting RAW, it won't be a problem. I would try and set a custom WB if you have a grey card (or other thing approximately gray). Depending on the average length of shot, and how fast you are shooting may determine whether to use LE NR in camera or not. It essentially doubles your exposure time (once to take a picture, once to Black-screen). If you can get away with doing it in-camera time-wise, it may be one less thing to do in post.
  3. Ellsass

    Ellsass Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 15, 2014
    Panasonic puts red coloring on meters to indicate "danger zones" -- areas where you're going to overexposed or underexposed. In this case it looks like it doesn't think you'll have enough light (too small of an aperture) for the shutter speed. Maybe you can slow the shutter a little.

    I would turn off the extras and develop the RAW files yourself since this is a special situation (very dark sky, long exposure, and meant to be viewed as white spots/streaks against a black background).
  4. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    My suggestion for focusing on infinity is that when you setup, manually focus on a bright star then leave it there.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. tlovegrove

    tlovegrove Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 3, 2014
    Southern California
    Yes, I can do that and I think it will work fine. I'd still like to know to know where infinity focus is found on this focus distance meter though.

    Ellsass, I don't think the red can represent what you are suggesting, because it stays the exact same regardless of exposure (even when very overexposed), and it's in the exact same spot on my Panasonic G6 regardless of exposure as well.
  6. poopstick

    poopstick Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 9, 2013
    Burlington Ontario
    You're right. He's wrong.
    Infinity focus SHOULD be right where the white and red meet. They give that extra space(red), to compensate for any inaccuracy.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. kevin boyer

    kevin boyer Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 26, 2013
    Bozeman MT / Winder GA
    I'm also very interested in photographing the meteor shower. I have a G5 with a very good stable tripod and a remote trigger. My available lenses are listed in my sig line. What would be a good lens to use for getting the best results? Djarum made the suggestion to manually focus on a bright star and leave it at that. Sounds pretty cut and dried. I will be shooting in jpeg format. I know, I know, RAW would probably be be better, but my version of LR won't do RAW.
  8. tlovegrove

    tlovegrove Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 3, 2014
    Southern California
    • Like Like x 2
  9. biomed

    biomed Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 22, 2013
    Seattle area
    • Like Like x 1
  10. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    Can we see your results?
  11. tlovegrove

    tlovegrove Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 3, 2014
    Southern California
    Well, the meteor shower didn't turn out to be much at all, and I think the GX7 sensor isn't able to hold up very well to long exposures in darkness.
    But I still had some fun taking pictures, and as always the 25mm 1.4 performed well. The 14-42 PZ, on the other hand, was fairly disappointing for me.

    View attachment 364229 GX7-Camping-1 by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    [​IMG]GX7-Camping-2 by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    14287329254_357ea233fd_c.jpg GX7-Camping-3 by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    14101189358_5eee893d35_c.jpg GX7-Camping-4 by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    14285829312_0d76089c48_c.jpg GX7-Camping-5 by Tim Lovegrove, on Flickr

    • Like Like x 1
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