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Hello Leica-land, Been doing some lurking in the forums for some time, but can't find a definitive list of lenses suitable for astrophotography. Main things I'm looking at are fast aperture, low coma, flat field performance. Fast aperture may be not a total dealbreaker with the high iso abilities these days (using an M10-R BP, currently) especially if a tracking mount is used. That said, I haven't seen too many folks doing astro with Leica cameras/glass, though I know it's possible given my first Milky Way run of the season this year. See below for my shot of the Milky Way competing against the light pollution of NYC taken this weekend. Currently I've only tested my existing lenses (Zeiss 21 2.8 and 50 Lux 1.4. ASPH) and both seem to have horrible coma even stopped down. I mostly used the Zeiss and even at f4 I found spots of coma, though interestingly not uniform (maybe there's some field curvature going on here where one corner is better than another?) I've read about Leica's own fast wides, but most seem out of my price range at the moment. I'm definitely getting a Zeiss 35mm 1.4 which may fit the bill for this use as it's pretty darn near optically perfect, but are there any wider lenses the community could recommend? or am I doomed to lust/save for the 21Lux or 28 Lux/cron?
It's well documented that the M240 is not able to go past 8 seconds shutter duration when set at ISO 800 and further which makes successful Milky Way type of pictures very difficult (standard being something like 30 seconds at ISO 1600 at f2). Well after some searching today I found a post where a guy had discovered that using the M set on auto ISO and in continuous shoot mode when set on bulb he could get 60 seconds. However even when auto ISO high limit was set at 3600 ISO the exposure turned out at 800 ISO the camera not shifting the the highest ISO in the auto setting. Anyway after some experimentation I found that if I took a shot first in A shutter mode at ISO 1600 and then go back to auto ISO it would still use 1600 since auto ISO uses the last used ISO when set to bulb. So with this I was able to get and exposure of 60 seconds at 1600 ISO when ISO is in auto, shutter set to B and in continuous shot C. Recap Set auto ISO upper limit to 1600 or above Set ISO to 1600 and take a picture Set ISO to auto Set shutter to B Set shoot mode to C Take a shot and hold down the shutter button After 60 secs it will automatically close the shutter Of course in the real world you would use a cable release and make the necessary exposure time, say 30 seconds for the Milky Way at f2 Now I just have to find somewhere to shoot the Milky Way which is not easy when you live in Shanghai :-)