Get your stars right! A tool for long exposure time estimation to avoid star-trailing effects

Posted on June 3 2013 in Behind the Scenes, Tips & Tricks

Star Exposure calculator is a simple, web tool, which given user-specified camera model and available focal length, returns the longest exposure time, which should yield minimal-star trail photograph. How to use it? Simply select the manufacturer, pick your camera model, and adjust the focal length slider located below the camera model buttons.

81 comments

  • Pingback: Visual Storytelling from Remote Locations with Kamil Tamiola and Lumi Toma : The Lowepro Blog

  • Pingback: Our long exposure photography checklist | ALPINE PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG

  • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

    If you would like to see more camera added, please leave your feedback!

    • Gerrit

      Hey great page and tool, would it be possible to ad the Nikon D7000 please ?

      • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

        Hey Gerrit! Check the tool now! D7000 should be in the list!

  • James Partridge

    How about the Fuji X-E2 or the X-T1? Cheers!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Thanks! I will work on that this evening!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Hey @james_partridge:disqus! I have just added the X-T1! Please refresh the page to see the changes!

  • Bhima

    Is the scale based on 35mm equivalent? Say I choose Oly MFT. If i have the 17mm lens, would I set the scale at 17mm or 35mm? Thanks!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Hey! @Bhima:disqus The scale is based on 35mm indeed (so the full frame).

  • Andreas R.

    I’d really like to see Sony RX100 and RX100-II :) Thanks for this great little tool!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      I will add these models tomorrow! Cheers!

      • Andreas R.

        Great, thanks! :)

        • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

          Pleasure Andreas!

  • CTrocks

    Canon 7D please! Thanks!!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Sure! We are working on it!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      It has been added, please refresh the page!

      • CTrocks

        Thank you so much!

        • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

          Happy shooting! :)

  • Andrew

    any for the nikon D5100? pleasee

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      We will add it today!

  • Bill Taylor

    Canon t3i?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Hey! @disqus_A8R7s6ZKEb:disqus! Canon T1 option should do the trick!

  • Levi

    GoPro Hero3 Black please

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      OK… Have you ever captured a long exposure with this one?

      • Levi

        I haven’t tried yet but would like to give it a go on my next holiday

  • Erik

    Could you please add Samsung NX300?
    Nice tool!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      I will look into that ASAP…

  • Kand S LuckySevens

    Is my Sony a-320 included w/ your a series ? I noticed that all the sony’s are the same

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Will add it tomorrow! Cheers!

  • Sean

    what about the canon rebel t3i? please? this is awesome! I thought i’d need a 2,00 dollar lens for this!

  • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

    I am right now adding new camera models! The Star Exposure Calculator should now run nicely on your mobile devices! Let me know, which camera would you like to see!

  • Sonny

    I would like to see a canon g1x

    • Sonny

      Also do you have this in app form so I can use it without any 3G or wifi

      • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

        In 3 weeks Sonny we are going live with a patent-pending version of the tool! :) So, please stay tuned and reshare this tool if you can!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      OK!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Please refresh your browser window. The camera should load now!

  • BillinPDX

    2 months ago you stated “No action is necessary, please use Nikon DXXXX setting!” in response to a request for Nikon D5100. I don’t see that selection.

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Hey Billin! Indeed! My apologies, I was very busy…

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Update the browser window. If you like the tool, buy me a coffee :)

  • Blacky13o7

    Would you please add the Olympus e-520? Might be a tough one since Olympus doesn’t produce any more DSLRs..

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Will do!

      • Blacky13o7

        Thanks a lot! Great work!

        • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

          Pleasure! If you have found the tool useful, please share it with others! I am gradually adding new cameras!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Please refresh your browser window!

  • 0ptics

    Could you add the Nikon D7100? Also the focal length of 12mm? Thanks Kamil!!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Thank you! Indeed, good suggestion! I will expand the focal length!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      The changes should take effect after refreshing browser window!

  • http://click.lovelldsouza.com/ Lovell D’souza

    Hi @ktamiola:disqus! Thanks for this tool. Quick question – What ISO value has been assumed for this? I don’t see it mentioned anywhere.

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      ISO is an arbitrary measure of the sensitivity. This is why I have omitted it in the app. I usually start shooting with ISO3200. Please check the eBook we have put together with G-Technology. http://bit.ly/free-night-ebook

      • http://click.lovelldsouza.com/ Lovell D’souza

        Makes sense. Thanks for the response.

        • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

          Pleasure Lovell! Getting ISO right is the last piece of the puzzle! Just experiment with it! It is about finding the balance between the sensitivity and acceptable noise levels!

          • http://click.lovelldsouza.com/ Lovell D’souza

            Thanks for the ebook link and the advice. I’ve been following your work for quite a while and it is truly amazing. I’ll be headed off to the Himalayas in a months time. Will hopefully be back with some decent timelapses and night shots.

  • Georg

    Thanks for this great little service. Would you mind adding a Canon 1Dx?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      1DX should be now in the list!

  • Greg

    Hi there, is there Canon EOS 700D?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      700D should be supported now!

  • becks

    Hi would you mind adding Canon 7D to the list please … :)

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Done! Please refresh your browser!

  • Andrew.Yang

    Would you add PENTAX please?? Thanks:)

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Hi! Which one?

  • Kay Wong

    Can You Add Pentax K-3 Please!!!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Please check the tool now! Your camera should be in the list!

  • Jason

    Could you make an app please?

    • Marty

      Dude just simply find another 24mp model and input the focal length you know to original focal length times 1.5
      There is no magic.

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      The app is on its way! It will be far more advanced than this calculator. We have been working on the technology for quite some time! :)

  • Barney Tan

    I’m using a 10-22 on 60D crop body. Do I need to multiply 1.6x basis on my crop body ?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Nope! This should be already included in the calculation!

  • Jackson

    can add K-30?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Is it Pentax?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Please check the tool! Pentax K-30 should be in the list!

  • Anders

    I cannot select anything here.
    What should I do?

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Which browser (please include the version) are you using? Are you using AD BLOCK?

      • Anders

        Mine is Firefox 29.0.1 and I am not using AD Block

        • Anders

          I found that it works for me when I used my phone’s 3G to access your website. lol

          • Anders

            Anyway, thanks for your tool. It’s great :)

          • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

            Hey! My pleasure! I will look into the browser issue! Very weird indeed!

  • jane

    hi can i ask , is there Canon EOS 600D

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      I will add it today! So stay tuned for the updates!

    • http://www.alpine-photography.com/ Kamil Tamiola

      Please update the tool! There should be new camera model implemented, Canon Rebel T3i (600D). Cheers!

  • Ratatoskr

    What about doing the tool more of an astro photography tool.
    Me and many with me photograph specific star constellations or planets, that means focal lengths of up to 3000-5000 mm. Your tool only provides for celestial landscape photography.

Share Star Exposure Calculator

- did you find this tool useful?
- would you like to have more cameras added?

Please share it with your friends, and follow me on Twitter