Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Digiscope or Superzoom Bridge Camera for Birding?

A correspondent who sells secondhand optical equipment for birding on eBay tells me that the prices of digiscoping adapters for major brand telescopes are falling. He thinks the rise of the Superzoom ‘Bridge’ cameras I have discussed in this blog is the reason. The extra focal length gained by using a scope (see my Post of 19 August 2012) is now of marginal advantage when we can get the 35 mm equivalent of 1200 mm focal length from a superzoom. Add the large number of pixels captured and the fact that there is image stabilisation in the superzoom, then I can see why the digiscoping may become a thing of the past fairly quickly.

It is obviously much quicker to point a superzoom camera at a bird than it is to mount the scope on a tripod, aim and focus the scope, attach the camera by whatever attachment you have and then press the shutter.

Another correspondent says he has just had a rare bird accepted from a photograph at 1000 mm equivalent with his Nikon P510 handheld.

Over the next few weeks I will eventually get round to comparing my two systems (Nikon P50 Superzoom vs Leica Televid and Panasonic Lumix on adapter) side by side at the mouth of the river and in the garden.