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Has anyone had a crack at the SL2-S for astrophotography or other long exposures yet?

While not a large part of my photography, I have enjoyed some astro landscapes on recent trips. Last trip I found the SL2's results to be pretty awful and ended up doing all my astro with the X1D. I'd love to hear/see feedback on how the SL2-S goes in this application. 

 

 

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Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Hallo Gast! Du willst die Bilder sehen? Einfach registrieren oder anmelden!

+1 for the Sigma 14-24mm. My first ever attempt at Astro photography. Zuka Game Reserve South  Africa, moonless night & far away from any human-generated light sources. Pure beginner's luck to capture a shooting star in this image. SL2 & Sigma 14-24mm @ 15mm f2.8 ISO400  24sec. exposure Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Hallo Gast! Du willst die Bilder sehen? Einfach registrieren oder anmelden!    

SL2 + VE 24-90 Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Hallo Gast! Du willst die Bilder sehen? Einfach registrieren oder anmelden!

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I am not that familiar with the SL2, can you explain what the issues are regarding astrophotography?  I am trying to decide between the two models.

 

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The SL2-S should be better for astro work.  You get better performance at higher ISOs and you'll see less noise and fewer star tails with the lower (but still respectable) 24mp resolution.  In theory anyway.  I have an SL2 and it's not so good for astro.  I was about to buy a Sony A7III but then Leica released the SL2-S.  I'm leaning toward that now but would like to see some examples.  Most of the examples I've seen, though, have long-exposure noise reduction enabled, which you do not want for astro work since it tends to treat some stars as noise and effectively erase them.

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1 hour ago, Cattoo said:

Most of the examples I've seen, though, have long-exposure noise reduction enabled, which you do not want for astro work since it tends to treat some stars as noise and effectively erase them.

Can you elaborate on how stars which are present in the actual exposure gets removed by taking a black frame without the shutter open? This is news to me.

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6 hours ago, beewee said:

This is news to me.

simply google “noise reduction” and “Astro photography” for a dozen articles on the topic.
 

Yes, you can use noise reduction, but some stars in your photo will be faint, tiny points of light that will inevitably get lost /erased when NR is applied. (see link below for more info on the topic) This has long been the bane of Sony users (google sony and “star eater”) until the A7iii, which allowed you to disable the feature. People still complain that they lose stars though. 
 

Perhaps Leica’s NR doesn’t eat stars the way other cameras’ NR does. I don’t know, I’ve been trolling the forums for examples but no one has posted a long exposure Astro photo just yet. It’s not the best time of year for Milky Way photos in the northern hemisphere. 

https://www.lightstalking.com/noise-reduction-on-off-astrophotography/amp/
 

 

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3 hours ago, helged said:

On the topic of astro - what lenses are people liking for astro on L mount bodies?

I have the Sigma 14mm f1.8 Art.  

It's a great lens.  I bought it specifically for astro work.  

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9 hours ago, Cattoo said:

I have the Sigma 14mm f1.8 Art.  

It's a great lens.  I bought it specifically for astro work.  

Yes, the Sigma 14mm f1.8 Art is great - but one should test the lens prior to serious use (seems to be some variations). 

The SL 16-35 is not a good lens for astro - too much distortion/aberrations towards the edges/corners. But SL24-90 @24mm is outstanding! (albeit a little slow).

Edited by helged
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Posted (edited)

Don't know if Leica applies any Noise Reduction on the raw, but the sensor is practically identical to the one of the S1, so the best one, in the 24x36 range, in this regard.

Low read-noise, low long-exposure noise (https://www.brendandaveyphotography.com/more/long-exposure-sensor-testing/), details.

 Regarding the noise from long exposures, depending on how the electrical circuits are built and how the heat is dissipated, the performance may vary, but the sensor itself works very well.

14-24 DG DN is the perfect lens for astro-landscapes.

Edited by Paolou Pigini
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1 hour ago, Cattoo said:

Nice shot. Can you give us some exposure details? 

I don't remember the exact values, but I reckon about 4 minutes of exposure for the tracked starry sky (Ioptron Sky Tracker Pro) at f/2.8, and same time and f/4 for the rocks.

Lens is really sharp already wide open, well controlled coma and no issues at all...moreover is versatile in focal lenghts and lightweight. 

I have this early-summer raw test (similar exif), there was a little more light pollution than the photo above but it's better than a thousand words to evaluate the sensor and lens, it being understood that we have to see how they implemented the SL2-S:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1wVbOk0xSTJUjsGaMiXfYhI7hqj3Pi3iH/view?usp=sharing

Edited by Paolou Pigini
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On 1/6/2021 at 9:28 PM, steveBK said:

On the topic of astro - what lenses are people liking for astro on L mount bodies?

 

 

On 1/7/2021 at 12:44 PM, Paolou Pigini said:

......14-24 DG DN is the perfect lens for astro-landscapes.

+1 for the Sigma 14-24mm. My first ever attempt at Astro photography. Zuka Game Reserve South  Africa, moonless night & far away from any human-generated light sources. Pure beginner's luck to capture a shooting star in this image.

SL2 & Sigma 14-24mm @ 15mm f2.8 ISO400  24sec. exposure

 

 

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  • 4 months later...

I just wanted to give this a bump to see if anyone has used the SL2-S for astrophotography at this point. I figured there might be some folks who have gotten out to shoot the Milky Way with it at this point.

Cheers.

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  • 1 month later...
3 hours ago, bcorton said:

Another bump. I’m interested to see if the new back-lit sensor delivers substantial gains for astrophotography. Anyone?

I've just purchased an SL2-S as a back up for my SL2. I received the camera yesterday and will be trying out some astro shots with the Sigma 14-24mm L in the next few days. Will hopefully post some images later this week.

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On 6/20/2021 at 10:57 AM, bcorton said:

Another bump. I’m interested to see if the new back-lit sensor delivers substantial gains for astrophotography. Anyone?

Anything specific you want to know?

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