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How to get a good shot of Comet SWAN
  • Try to find a dark spot in your backyard away from street or house lights.
  • After you've given your eyes 5 - 10 minutes to acclimatise to the dark, look directly to the east. "If you just point your camera dead east and take a long exposure you will find that green blob," Mr O'Donnell says.
  • You don't need any special camera, but DSLRs are preferred.
  • You can use any type of lens, but a long or a wide focus lens will give you the best results. "If you are using the longer lens you can get right into that nucleus and see the detail in the tail," Mr O'Donnell says. But if you want to capture the whole tail then a wide-angle lens is better.
  • Use as high an ISO as possible, but if you use too high an ISO the image will be grainy. "I use 3200 for this comet," Mr O'Donnell says.
  • The aperture should be as wide open as possible - the lower the number the better
  • Shutter speed will depend upon your lens. "If you are shooting wide then you can do 30 second exposures, but if you're using a long lens and you're zooming in I wouldn't go more than 8 - 10 seconds.
  • Do a few test exposures first to see if you are capturing all of the comet. "If you centre the comet in the middle you might find that you're chopping off the tail at the edge of the frame."
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