No Gear Quick Start

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Perhaps you were browsing the community, perhaps you saw some stuff online about amateurs taking pictures of space. For some reason, you decided you wanted to give this hobby a try.

Personally, I was in the same boat as you. I didn't have anything, and came to this community due to my interest in Astronomy, and my interest in taking pictures of things I saw in the sky. I did have a telescope, but nothing else.

In any case, welcome!

How do I get started?

Well, obviously, you are going to need a camera.

Just about any DSLR will do, but in the aspects of Astrophotography, Nikon and Canon DSLRs have the best software support for this hobby. There are many different softwares out there that will help you control your camera in the later stages of the hobby, if you end up getting that far.

So, here is a basic list of things you'll need.

  • A Nikon or Canon DSLR,
  • A Tripod,
  • A Remote Shutter Cable or Intervalometer,
  • A wide lens (sub 35mm)

Here are a few recommendations on Cameras. Try to find one with a lens included, you won't get any far without one. For these beginning steps, you will need smaller focal length lenses. Lenses between 14mm to 35mm work best for a beginner without any kind of star-tracking ability. If you are confused on what any of these words mean, check out the Glossary.


  • SL2 / 200D
  • T7i / 800D
  • T6i / 750D
  • T5i / 700D
  • T4i / 650D
  • T3i / 600D (Do not spend more than $200 USD on this camera unless it is "astro-modified")


  • D5300
  • D5500
  • D5600 (These three all have the same sensor)

The main goal is to get something that has interchangeable lenses, a Bulb mode, and the ability to be controlled via software. These cameras all have those abilities. This list is in no way a complete list, just the first ones that popped into my head. Do your research, and find a camera you like at a price point you're comfortable with. In general, newer cameras do better with noise and sensitivity, but are also more expensive.

Check out this section of the Wiki to hear more about which camera you should buy

Once you have a Camera, Tripod, a lens, and a remote shutter cable or Intervalometer, (Definitely recommend the Intervalometer!) check out this page

Good Luck! Welcome to the hobby.