[midvalleybirds] Re: [obol] Re: Birder's camera

Priscilla Sokolowski priscillanhk at gmail.com
Thu Jan 17 18:39:48 PST 2019

Hi all!

I bought a SONY RX10 Mark lll about a year and a half ago after using a
CANON SX50 for several years. The SX50 was fun to use, lightweight and the
50X zoom was great. However, I gradually realized that even if a bird was
50 feet away, there were still "soft" patches on the bird many times. The
SONY has a faster (and better quality I think) ZEISS lens AND it has a
sensor about 8x13 mm which is close to four times the area of the 1/2.3"
sensors of the Nikon P1000  and Canon SX50.  The larger sensor area
effectively makes up for some of the smaller zoom factor.  I can't explain
it in correct technical terms, but when taking the image from the sensor
size to the size you want on a computer screen or print, with the larger
sensor you are not doing as large a factor of size increase; ie you are not
"stretching the pixel information" out as much in that process. I'm wincing
even as I say it that way. Sorry.  In any case the 24X of the SONY RX10
Mlll and MlV gives ALMOST the same final image size result as the Canon
SX50's 50X zoom but with greater sharpness all across the bird.

The SONY also allows me to manually focus by turning the lens barrel like
the cameras of the old days. I really like having that option available at
a single button press. The Canon SX50 manual focus required turning a small
dial a lot. The only way I could make that work for me was to set it to do
a 3-shot "bracket" - ie 3 shots with focus slightly difference for one
shutter press. That worked sometimes.

When shooting a distant bird purely for ID purposes I use the "Clear Image
Zoom" of the SONY to get another factor of 2 zoom. It is digital zoom, but
uses algorithms which are better than standard digital zoom
interpolations.  (Okay - that is arguable I'm sure to the "purists" out
there). I only use it as I just mentioned - for distant birds photographed
for field mark ID purposes.

There is a book which I found indispensable for learning all the features
which I use on the SONY: "Photographer's Guide to the SONY DSC RX10 lll" by
Alexander S White. It was recommended on DPReview.com  and it is excellent.

Just sharing my experience. You have to find what works best for you.

Priscilla Sokolowski

On Thu, Jan 17, 2019 at 4:37 PM Jacob Mathison <jacobmathison1 at gmail.com>

> I have the Nikon P900, and it is, without a doubt, one of the best out
> there, unless you count the Sony RX10 Mark IV, which I have heard is
> incredible. I personally have not tried the Nikon P1000 either, but I would
> say that is the best for the money out there if you feel you need more zoom
> than the RX10 IV.
> My 2¢,
> Jacob Mathison
> jacobmathison1.wixsite.com/nature-photography
> <http://jacobmathison1.wixsite.com/nature-photography>
> "If you keep a green tree in your heart, perhaps a  singing bird will
> come." ~Chinese Proverb
> On Wed, Jan 16, 2019 at 4:00 PM Susan Bettis <sbettis at easystreet.net>
> wrote:
>> ------------------------------
>> *From:* obol-bounce at freelists.org <obol-bounce at freelists.org> on behalf
>> of Donald Burns <burnsdacey at comcast.net>
>> *Sent:* Tuesday, January 15, 2019 5:02 PM
>> *To:* fhkolwicz1 at gmail.com
>> *Cc:* bird groups; OBOL
>> *Subject:* [obol] Re: Birder's camera
>> Dpreview.com is a site where there is information and test results on
>> most all cameras.
>> On Jan 15, 2019, at 4:54 PM, Frank Kolwicz <fhkolwicz1 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> My favorite website for camera-related tech info, lensrentals.com, just
>> tested what looks like the closest thing I've seen to an ideal camera for
>> bird documentation, a Nikon Coolpix P1000. The article should have enough
>> information for anyone with a question to figure out if this is for them
>> and, if not, offers a rental option for a good hands-on evaluation in the
>> field (and great service). The article is at
>> https://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2019/01/the-nikon-p1000-is-the-most-fun-ive-had-with-a-new-camera-in-years/
>> .
>> A couple of years ago I tried out a similar Canon model SX70 (?) and
>> found it to be essentially useless in terms of image quality for my
>> purposes as a photographer, this Nikon looks much better, but please heed
>> the warnings about image stability and atmospheric disturbance effects at
>> the long end of the focal range - anything above about 600mm, more or less,
>> depending on a lot of things, your own steadiness not the least. But, if
>> you're already walking with one or two poles, you probably have the makings
>> of a camera steady rest available or easy to adapt to supporting the camera.
>> Good luck and good birding,
>> Frank
>> in Monmouth
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