It's that time of year, the Perseid Meteors are back! Actually they never left, but Planet Earth is back among the Perseids and we're along for the ride.
Peak of the meteor shower is in the wee hours of the morning on the 12th & 13th, which translates to next Sunder & Monday mornings, although if the sky is clear then you will be able to see meteors any time it's dark.
This year I rented the 24mm f/1.4 for use on my D800 and 10.5mm DX fisheye for D7000.
This is my best shot from 2010 at Crater Lake, D300 with Nikkor 24mm f/1.4, combining 2 shots, one 30" for the foreground, one 13" ISO 1600 for the star field.
The (FX) rule of thumb to freeze star motion is 500/focal length. In the above case, 24mm on DX = 36mm on FX so 500/36 = 13.8". Setting exposure for 13" I opened the aperture all the way (f/1.4), used live view to manually focus on a bright star, then determined what ISO setting would give the exposure I wanted. Then I just set my intervalometer to continuously run that exposure, and kicked back to enjoy the show.
Here's one of about a dozen Perseids I managed to capture. This was taken in Yosemite at Glacier Point, with Half Dome as the intended foreground subject. Having a singular subject I found made it more difficult to be happy with position of the meteor, compared to the Crater Lake shot above in which it pretty much worked anywhere.
Also, there is a fair amount of light pollution in Yosemite and this is visible in that not nearly as many stars are visible, and the sky near the horizon has a greenish hue.
This was taken with D7000 & 10.5mm f/2.8 DX fisheye. The 180º field of view was the only way I could include Half Dome to the north, and the Milky Way which was above and behind me. Clouds weren't cooperating here but I have others to be processed which have a clear sky. But, this probably was my best meteor of the night...
D7000 + Nikkor 10.5mm DX fisheye, f/2.8 30" ISO 2500
(BTW this looks really weird and purple but I'm in the process of building a new computer and haven't profiled the monitor yet. Please let me know how the colors look at the other end!)
Well - I took 120 shots over a period of two hours with the camera pointed NW, away from the moon. Half of the pictures were ruined by clouds, but I caught one meteor. Conditions were as described in post#2
Here's another one from Glacier Point. This one with D800 & Nikkor 24mm f/1.4. LiveView was used to manually focus on a bright star. The foreground & Half Dome happened to be lightly illuminated by cars passing the switchbacks down to the parking lot, as was the case in many frames. This was not the biggest or brightest meteor I captured, but it was the best placed. It take this as a lesson that in future shoots I'll probably get more frames I like if I choose a less singular foreground element. There's actually a 2nd meteor in this pic but it's faint and difficult to see in this size. It's nearly vertical and just to the right of the cluster of stars near center, which I believe is Perseus' belt.
D800 Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 15" f/1.4 ISO 1250 1:07 AM August 12