During the past year, I’ve been sharing many of my astro-landscapes and one thing that people have repeatedly asked me is how do I get my foregrounds so detailed and clean. Usually the problem photographers have when shooting the night sky is that their foregrounds are too dark, too noisy, or both.
In June, I was out in Anza Borrego and managed to get my first real test out of using a star tracker. Previously, I had been stacking images with Starry Landscape Stacker (SLS) to reduce noise. Given that I had some extra time, I took some shots to use in comparison and thought I’d share them here with my observations.
As many of you know, Sony has a spatial filtering algorithm designed to reduce noise. However this algorithm has the drawback that it might reduce or change the appearance of stars in landscape astro shots and hence was given the name “star eater” by the community. This has been a huge issue and garned much attention online, but recently Jim Kasson discovered that it was possible to avoid the star eater effect by shooting in continuous mode for the a7r2 and s2.