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Old February 12th, 2007, 12:34 PM   #1
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Recommend a (digi)scope, please

I know I'm easily fooled ... I did believe that you get what you pay for when buying binoculars ... but at the upper end there is very little difference in quality between Zwarovski, Zeiss & Leica ... and there is a real difference in their prices.

What about scopes for digiscoping with my Canon EOS Digital Rebel ?

What do you use and how do you find it for wildlife @ 200 yards?

How important is the quality of both scope and eyepiece?

What SLR camera do you use when digiscoping?

Do you always use remote control?

Preferably costing less (or much less) than $1500.
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Old February 13th, 2007, 07:40 AM   #2
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Brendan,

I do a lot of digiscoping of birds, I have had great success with the combination of Swarovski ATS 80HD scope and Nikon 8400 camera. I am using the 20-60x , 30x & 45x eyepieces together with the Swarovski DCA (Digital Camera Adaptor). Initally I always used the Nikon remote control but lately have just been using the camera in continuous mode. I have found the quality of the 30x eyepiece to be superior.

Like all photography, distance depends greatly on air quality, in Hong Kong the polution is generally bad but 200 metres is digiscopable

There are some examples at

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jingbar/

Bob Thompson
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Old February 13th, 2007, 08:11 AM   #3
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Brendan,

For further info on Digiscoping with a particular camera I would check out this UK web site http://www.birdforum.net/ and scroll down to the Andy Bright digiscoping section

Cheers

Bob Thompson
Hong Kong
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Old February 13th, 2007, 11:15 AM   #4
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Thank you for 2 interesting links Bob. I'll be checking them out.

Your peacock image is superb.

Any estimate of the present cost of your digiscoping gear, please?
Hongkong prices may be more attractive than UK or US?
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Old February 15th, 2007, 06:20 PM   #5
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Brendan,

The cost of the ATS 80HD scope, 20-60x eyepiece & digital camera adaptor came to US $2800, unfortunately quality comes with a (high) price.

Bob
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Old February 16th, 2007, 06:41 AM   #6
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Brendan,

Check out this site, it shows the Canon Rebel with scope

http://www.birddigiscoping.com/blog.html

Bob
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Old February 16th, 2007, 12:27 PM   #7
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McDowell's site is a revelation Bob, so far. Andy Bright's offers a wealth of info and insight too; I'm sure I've trawled less than 5% of that.

However I'm still looking for a clear statement of my digiscoping options when I remove my lens from my Rebel. I'm not looking for an infinite list allowing for all the variables ... that's not on, it's never on. What I'm after is a yes/no/maybe statement that once I remove my lens I do or do not lose all my camera's functions except the function of shooting blindly whatever I line up through the scope. Which is it, Bob?

And then, whichever it is, tell me out straight that I'd be as well or better off practising with my Sigma 75-300 lens and using my tripod + remote control than scurrying around for a new compact camera which is so compatible with a particular 500 scope ++ as to make a big difference to image quality at 200 metres.

Perhaps you'd advise me to put those questions to McDowell or Bright but I have this impression that you're a nice guy without a vested interest (unless maybe that's your pirate's yellow leather eye patch you flung over the masked lapwing's nose ... incredible detail but I'm guessing you are well within 30 metres and your gear is truly super-class)
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Old February 16th, 2007, 05:39 PM   #8
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Brendan,

If I were you I would stay with my Canon and Sigma lens but would possibly upgrade to a Wemberley head for flight shots.

Personally I have never owned a DSLR. All my working life I have lugged 35mm and 16mm film cameras, Betacams and now XL2 through the countryside. My hobby is birdwatching and already having a decent telescope, I wanted some lightweight gear I could throw in a daypack and still get decent shots - digiscoping was the way to go. I can walk all day with this gear, something my DSLR friends can't do. I can also achieve results which maybe 80% of a DSLR. The major drawback with digiscoping is that flight shots are near impossible

Cheers

Bob
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Old February 16th, 2007, 05:54 PM   #9
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Brendan,

Sorry I forgot to mention you were quite correct about the distance of the masked lapwing, it was around 30 metres. This attached shot (full frame) is around 700 metres

Bob
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Old February 17th, 2007, 05:20 PM   #10
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Your frank opinion on digiscoping flight is extremely useful and saves me a pile of uncertainty, thank you Bob.

Wimberley head looks clever on paper for tilting and panning. I've never seen anything like that. (I have Manfrotto 701rc2 but I find it cumbersome for flight, perhaps from lack of practice.) Next week I'll try to find a Wimberley and check it out.
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Old February 18th, 2007, 05:31 AM   #11
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Brendan,

For bird photography try this site

http://www.naturescapes.net/home.htm

In my opinion some of the best nature photography on the internet

Bob
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Old August 19th, 2007, 08:02 AM   #12
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Please suggest a lens for my Canon Digital Rebel (SLR) that would give me more reach than my 75-300 Sigma?
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