Can you tell me the best way to set up my Nikon D5500 for shoot­ing star trails? Bob Hay­don, via email

NPhoto - - Niko Pedia -

Ja­son says... To cap­ture stars mov­ing across the night sky, you’ll need to mount your cam­era on a sta­ble plat­form and keep its po­si­tion fixed. Use the Man­ual mode and se­lect a fairly wide aper­ture with a shut­ter speed of 30 sec­onds. Fo­cus on the dis­tant horizon or the sky and en­sure the fo­cus set­ting re­mains fixed, by switch­ing to Man­ual mode. Dis­able long ex­po­sure noise re­duc­tion, which stops the cam­era from shoot­ing suc­ces­sive shots for pe­ri­ods of time equal to the length of each ex­po­sure.

Take a con­tin­u­ous se­quence of 200 or more shots. The eas­i­est way to do this is to set the drive mode to Con­tin­u­ous and to use a ca­ble re­lease like the Nikon MC-DC2 (£30/$30). Fi­nally, you’ll need to merge all the shots into a sin­gle im­age with long trails. Try StarS­taX (http://bit.ly/StarS­taX).

Wrap up warm and get in po­si­tion at twi­light, so you can set up be­fore it’s com­pletely dark

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