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Starting Research on getting a 'Real' Camera


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#1 folkeye

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 09:15 PM

Okay... I've always loved taking photos, I love birding and I know the two can go hand in hand. I'm in no rush to purchase a DSLR, will do my research first. But for those that do use the DSLR's ,perhaps Nikon or Canon, anybody have any good suggestions for a starting lens for birding that won't make me rob a bank? (Try to keep it under $2,000.00 if possible.... that's just robbing a stagecoach and lots of penny pinching, begging, birthday, Christmas, and chairity for the next few years LOL). I know I'd be looking at buying as good a camera body as I can, be it new or used then spend more on the lens.

I was speaking with somebody recently and she said the more narrow field of view to have the bird the main focus was good? I don't remember what lens she had but it was about 2 feet long and huge. Looked through it and it did have a narrow field, the bird, when found, would be the main attraction in the shot. I do know from it's size alone that would be something far out of my price range. I forgot what the magnification/zoom was... impressive beast though.

I'm trying to educate myself on what's out there lens wise and what all the numbers and techno-babble that goes with it means, but it's hard to absorb without actual practice and hands on. Where the heck do I start? I know the camera wouldn't be just for birding (that'll be another lens, another time....) but it's where I'd like to start. I know after getting equipment I'd take my butt to a photography class to get a better grasp on application. It's just finding the tools.

Is there a benefit to a zoom vs fixed focal length or are they the same quality wise now? I know one wants to not be disturbing the birds.

And when people start talking 200mm and the likes....it's still a foreign language to me. Is that the field of view?

Any known reputable lenses that are good starting points?

Any tips or smacks in the right direction would be appreciated.

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#2 Joejr14

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 10:37 PM

SMACK to Nikon! Just kidding!

As far as brands of cameras and accessories go, they're both pretty equal. There was a time many moons ago that Nikon goofed up and screwed the pooch on professional long lenses and bodies and such (why you see so many photogs at sporting events shooting Canon) but today everything is nearly equal.

You'll find that Canon makes a great 400mm f/5.6 birding lens. Nikon doesn't have a similar copy of that lens. Nikon currently has the unmatched 36MP D800. Shrugs. Some find that Nikon's menu systems are easier to navigate, others argue that Canon's are. Whatev.

Question is, how much are you willing to spend on the entire system (camera body and lens(es) and what is your main purpose for taking pictures? Is it going to be bird photography 1st, or no?

If so, you can get several good big name lenses in the 300mm range for $500-$1200. I would highly suggest going the used route if you're looking to acquire 'bigger' glass and want to save some $$.

The 'off-brand' lens makers (Tamron, Sigma, etc) have a WIDE variety of glass covering all the way up to 500mm. AND, you can get a NEW copy of ANY of them for under $2k.


As far as the photographer with the 2 foot lens....yes, it was expensive. Canon and Nikon copies of 'big' lenses (400mm f/2.8, 500mm f/4, 600mm f/4 and up) will set you back $8000+....the new Canon lenses that were recently released are up near $12,000 for the 600mm f/4. It also weighs a ton, requires long lens technique, and an incredibly expensive support system. The 'off-brand' big lenses will set you back $5000+ new.

Prime lenses are always sharper than zooms---it's always going to be the case and it's because of the physics of it. Prime lenses are also going to always be a lot more expensive than similar reach zoom lenses.

As far as the zoom/magnification issue...

Zoom is nothing more than the maximum focal length divided by the minimal focal length. So the Sigma 50-500mm zoom lens is a 10x zoom. Magnification is a whole separate issue (like when someone asks the magnification of a 600mm lens...) that depends on your sensor size for your camera. A basic rule of thumb is that when looking through a camera what you see is normally around 50mm, or stating that at 50mm there is no magnification. So, a 500mm lens would be a 10x magnifier. A 600mm lens would be a 12x, 800mm would be a 16x, etc. At a higher magnification there is obviously a smaller or narrower field--that's all she meant.

The other fun number on lenses is the F stop, designated by f/_._. I could copy and paste the tedious definition and concept, but it effectively relates to lens 'speed' or the amount of light that the lens lets in. If you happen to be a math geek, the calculation is F/D, where F is the focal length and D is the diameter of the entrance pupil (the aperture). Are you lost yet?

F stops on a lens range from really small numbers (like f/1.4, 2.8, 4) to large numbers (f/22, f28, f32). The odd and sometimes confusing part of this is that a small f stop (or aperture) lets in more light than a large f stop. Here's a picture from google showing what apertures look like at their respective f stops.

Posted Image

So as you see, the smaller the f stop the more light comes in.

So if we back up to that equation, say we have a 500mm focal length (f), our aperture (f stop) is 4, we know that our diameter (D) is 125mm (500/4). If we're using that same lens at f/16 our diameter is 31.25mm. A much smaller diameter lens in much less light.

So, after all of that meaningless information, the idea is that lenses with smaller f numbers let in more light and are more expensive than lenses with higher f stops.

I think at this point I'm rambling, so I'll go back to some lens choices and leave it at that for the time being.

A Sigma 50-500 (Bigma) is $1659 new at Adorama
A Tamron 200-500 (I'm not a huge fan) is $949 new at Adorama
A Sigma 500mm (prime lens) is $4999.99 new at Adorama (see how much more expensive)
Sigma 150-500mm is $969 with mail in rebate

All of the above can be had for either Nikon or Canon mounts.

#3 folkeye

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 11:37 PM

As for how much in spending.... good question. I'm trying to get a decent priced camera body (if possible $1,500.00 or less) then worry about a lens that'll probably cost more. I would like to be versatile in my photos. So getting a 'good' lens for birding is where I'd like to start. I say 'good' opposed to 'outstanding' since the prospect of having a birding lens to start (and teleconverter eventually), and enough to get a second more multi-purpose lens for everything else is appealing. If I find out I totally adore and worship taking the bird shots, then I get myself a piggy bank and start saving.

I have been doing a little camera browsing the past hour or so and it seems the Canon has a stronger variety for lower prices. Was looking at a slightly older EOS 7D, that seemed to pack decent reviews. Took a look at the lenses and all them foreign numbers associated with them and they seem to have a really good variety/price range....

As for the prime lenses... are they good enough to catch birds in flight? Or are they more for stills? I read that if using a telephoto converter, it doesn't work as well with a zoom lens vs the prime. Most of my photos with the point and shoot have been birds at rest, but would love to catch some decent action.

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#4 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 12:25 AM

As for how much in spending.... good question. I'm trying to get a decent priced camera body (if possible $1,500.00 or less) then worry about a lens that'll probably cost more. I would like to be versatile in my photos. So getting a 'good' lens for birding is where I'd like to start. I say 'good' opposed to 'outstanding' since the prospect of having a birding lens to start (and teleconverter eventually), and enough to get a second more multi-purpose lens for everything else is appealing. If I find out I totally adore and worship taking the bird shots, then I get myself a piggy bank and start saving.


Totally possible to get a good camera body for under $1500, especially if you go used.

I have been doing a little camera browsing the past hour or so and it seems the Canon has a stronger variety for lower prices. Was looking at a slightly older EOS 7D, that seemed to pack decent reviews. Took a look at the lenses and all them foreign numbers associated with them and they seem to have a really good variety/price range....


Stronger variety of...cameras? Nah. Nikon and Canon both have good prosumer bodies that'll fit what you're looking for. Again, I don't shoot Canon so I can't recommend specific bodies, but I shoot with a Nikon D300 and have no real complaints. The Nikon D7000 is a 16.2 MP camera that's $1100 with a rebate right now, a little less refurbished, and cheaper still used. You could also consider the D5100, or the new D3200 (I haven't done any reading on the 3200), but the D7000 is the newest 'prosumer' body.

Foreign numbers....anything I didn't explain that you're questioning, or still have problems with the f/stop thing?

As for the prime lenses... are they good enough to catch birds in flight? Or are they more for stills? I read that if using a telephoto converter, it doesn't work as well with a zoom lens vs the prime. Most of my photos with the point and shoot have been birds at rest, but would love to catch some decent action.


Yeah, you'll have a much easier time catching BIF with a prime lens and a low f stop. Don't attempt to use a TC on a mid-grade zoom lens--the results will be terrible.

Here's an example of some fairly recent BIF shots...

Or not. My website host server is being incredibly stupid.

#5 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 12:40 AM

Here we go...

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

#6 Srdt6458

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 05:54 AM

I've been using the Nikon 80-400mm with good results. It's a shorter lense that I would like, but at around $1500 it a good quality and affordable zoom lense ( it as has vibration reduction that can sometimes help). I purchased mine used for $900. The only caution, or additional comments to the other great responses, is that using a camera with a higher Megapixel capability helps when you have to use a shorter lense because you can crop the picture to make the bird more prominant and still get an okay picture.
Both the camera body and lens will impact the quality. My approach was to buy the best body I could afford, and then add the speciality lenses later, but I've been a long time Nikon user, so I had a selection of other lenses on hand. I currently only own Nikor lenses, but have been looking at the Sigma 150-500mm (around $1000.00) that will also support their tele-converters to increase the focal length, but I'm still not sure the quality will be what I want...

#7 Jenny81

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 12:51 PM

I think you should go with Canon, and the 7D is a good choice. Take my suggestions with a grain of salt, as I only started taking pictures of birds 2 years ago, and have only been using manual mode one year.

Sigma lenses are pretty good, but when you put say a Canon 400mm lens on a Canon body, the zoom is actually longer than 400mm. I think the same is true for Nikon lenses on Nikon bodies.

As Joejr said, Nikon doesn't have a lens similar to the Canon 400mm f5.6, which I hear is very nice, though I haven't saved the money to get one. Yet.

The two Canon bodies that I have used have certain wheels and buttons which you just turn or push to adjust the settings, while the one Nikon I used at a friends house had a confusing (at least for me) menu which you had to go through to change the settings. For me at least turning the wheels and pushing the buttons is much faster, plus a menu can be hard to see in bright daylight.

Pictures taken from a certain camera to say how good it is are a little subjective, as an experienced photographer will take much better pictures, though they do help some. Gulls are a lot easier to photograph in flight than a warbler chasing a moth, so in flight pictures of gulls tend to be easier to take.Here is a hummingbird picture (taken as a quick snapshot, that was the only hummer picture I took that day) taken with manual focus. Taken with Canon 30D and 75-300mm F5.6.Posted Image

I don't know if Canon has any problems with this, so I am sure Joejr will correct me if I am wrong, but I have seen several people complaining about the tendency of certain Nikon cameras to produce noisy pictures. This picture is a little noisy, but it was taken at 800 iso, which is pretty high. This was taken with the same camera, but the Sigma 50-500mm f5.6, which doesn't let in as much light as my Canon lens.Posted Image
And here is another, at 1000 iso.Posted Image
Also, a short depth of field can sometimes be due to your settings, not just the lens you use. A narrow depth of field. Posted Image Sometimes you even want a wider depth of field so that your entire subject is in focus, not just the face. Some people might prefer the whole kitten in focus. Again, it is a quick shot, but this is the only one I edited, with a little lighting fix and an unsharp mask.Posted Image

Life list: 158
Yard list: 82 - latest yard bird : Wood Duck
Latest Lifers:  Ring-billed Gull, EVENING GROSBEAK, WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Snow Goose, Canada Warbler


#8 folkeye

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:27 PM

I was actually looking at the Nikon D7000 too as a prospect. Good news is my mom's friend uses the D7 so I can talk to her about it and see what her experience is.

Those pictures are very nice, Jenny. I assume the best results would be eventually going manual all the way?

Took a look at that Canon 400mm lens, seems like it's good for birding (hopefully for big and small birds). It has no image stabilization though. How badly does that affect things? Would that make a tripod a must, or can the action shot be taken by hand? I know I'd start by going to the pier/park where birds are more used to people and get some major practice in.

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#9 canon eos

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:43 PM

I was actually looking at the Nikon D7000 too as a prospect. Good news is my mom's friend uses the D7 so I can talk to her about it and see what her experience is.

Those pictures are very nice, Jenny. I assume the best results would be eventually going manual all the way?

Took a look at that Canon 400mm lens, seems like it's good for birding (hopefully for big and small birds). It has no image stabilization though. How badly does that affect things? Would that make a tripod a must, or can the action shot be taken by hand? I know I'd start by going to the pier/park where birds are more used to people and get some major practice in.



Be aware that the Nikon D7 is a 'full frame' DSLR so it does not have the 1.5 (or 1.6) magnifying factor of the Nikon D7000 or Canon's 7D (or my T2i). The Canon 400L on a 7D would be the equivalent of a 640mm, which is more what you want for birding.
You do not need stabilization for BIF photography, and with most current Canons (7d, 60D, T2i for examples) the 400L is just fine for hand-held, without IS.

I use the Canon T2i with the Canon 400L lens......

Have a look here

http://www.flickr.co...s/25701411@N07/

or here

http://canuckphoto.zenfolio.com/

#10 lonestranger

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:50 PM

The best place to start your research, in my opinion, is in a well stocked camera store with a knowledgeable and helpful staff. By visiting a camera store you can get a feel for the different cameras and observe first hand the differences in lenses. Just tell the sales agent that you're only in the research stage and that your only interest at this point is in becoming an educated consumer so you can make the right choices later. Any good camera store will gladly let you try different gear and explain why one option might be better suited for your personal needs. If the sales staff starts pushing one product over another instead of explaining the differences between the two and letting you decide, then I'd suggest trying a different store. In fact, I'd suggest visiting as many different stores as possible and handle the cameras over and over again, each visit will educate you a little more and make your decision easier. The last thing you want to do is buy your camera and lens based on what others can do with the same gear, skill as a photographer and post processing skills affect the quality of images as much as the camera and lens used to take them.

Recently(July 5/14)added some new photos to my Picasa Web Album.

http://picasaweb.goo...Ai6G4wenXZD7ClQ


#11 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:57 PM

I think you should go with Canon, and the 7D is a good choice. Take my suggestions with a grain of salt, as I only started taking pictures of birds 2 years ago, and have only been using manual mode one year.


Personally, I don't think you should listen to anyone when it comes to which brand to purchase. Go to a camera store and test different models from each brand to see which you like better. Optics are almost identical between the two major companies.

Sigma lenses are pretty good, but when you put say a Canon 400mm lens on a Canon body, the zoom is actually longer than 400mm. I think the same is true for Nikon lenses on Nikon bodies.

As Joejr said, Nikon doesn't have a lens similar to the Canon 400mm f5.6, which I hear is very nice, though I haven't saved the money to get one. Yet.


The top end Sigma's are almost identical in terms of image quality when compared to the Nikon's and Canon's. There's tons of comparisons online that can be googled. Also, a Sigma, Tamron, or Nikon on any Nikon DX camera body will result in additional focal length gain because the DX sensor is a 1.5x crop. Most Canon's are a 1.6x crop sensor---it has nothing to do with the brand of lens and everything to do with sensors. My 500mm Sigma is the 35mm equiv to 750mm, and on a Canon it would be 800mm. At that focal length 50mm is hardly noticeable.

The two Canon bodies that I have used have certain wheels and buttons which you just turn or push to adjust the settings, while the one Nikon I used at a friends house had a confusing (at least for me) menu which you had to go through to change the settings. For me at least turning the wheels and pushing the buttons is much faster, plus a menu can be hard to see in bright daylight.


My D300 has dials and buttons all over it. I don't have to go into any menu settings to adjust anything---and of course you can custom set buttons as well. I know on some of the 'entry-level' Nikon DSLR's you need to use some menu functions to change some things around, but I doubt that's the case with the newer prosumer bodies.

Pictures taken from a certain camera to say how good it is are a little subjective, as an experienced photographer will take much better pictures, though they do help some. Gulls are a lot easier to photograph in flight than a warbler chasing a moth, so in flight pictures of gulls tend to be easier to take. Here is a hummingbird picture (taken as a quick snapshot, that was the only hummer picture I took that day) taken with manual focus. Taken with Canon 30D and 75-300mm F5.6. I don't know if Canon has any problems with this, so I am sure Joejr will correct me if I am wrong, but I have seen several people complaining about the tendency of certain Nikon cameras to produce noisy pictures.


You're right---gulls are pretty easy to get BIF shots from. I went on a litlte photography trip this AM and once I process a few pics I'll post some birds that are NOT easy to get BIF shots of. I know some people complained about noise in the 7D, I believe, and I've also had other Nikon shooters complain about the noise in the D300. Shrugs.

#12 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:59 PM

Be aware that the Nikon D7 is a 'full frame' DSLR so it does not have the 1.5 (or 1.6) magnifying factor of the Nikon D7000 or Canon's 7D (or my T2i). The Canon 400L on a 7D would be the equivalent of a 640mm, which is more what you want for birding.
You do not need stabilization for BIF photography, and with most current Canons (7d, 60D, T2i for examples) the 400L is just fine for hand-held, without IS.


I'm pretty sure the OP was saying that the friend had a 7D, since Nikon doesn't make a D7....

I have no idea why the two companies found it necessary to use D's in their bodies.

#13 folkeye

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 04:32 PM

I'm pretty sure the OP was saying that the friend had a 7D, since Nikon doesn't make a D7....

I have no idea why the two companies found it necessary to use D's in their bodies.


Grrrr...meant to say EOS 7D....

The best place to start your research, in my opinion, is in a well stocked camera store with a knowledgeable and helpful staff. By visiting a camera store you can get a feel for the different cameras and observe first hand the differences in lenses. Just tell the sales agent that you're only in the research stage and that your only interest at this point is in becoming an educated consumer so you can make the right choices later. Any good camera store will gladly let you try different gear and explain why one option might be better suited for your personal needs. If the sales staff starts pushing one product over another instead of explaining the differences between the two and letting you decide, then I'd suggest trying a different store. In fact, I'd suggest visiting as many different stores as possible and handle the cameras over and over again, each visit will educate you a little more and make your decision easier. The last thing you want to do is buy your camera and lens based on what others can do with the same gear, skill as a photographer and post processing skills affect the quality of images as much as the camera and lens used to take them.


Yeah, that'll be the next thing on my list outside of talking with the person who has the camera I'm interested in. I do have a few stores nearby, never actually been in them! I guess as long as they're helpful, knowledgeable and have some patience it'll be a good thing.

I do want to take classes eventually, but until I have the camera I want to learn to use I have no idea if I can get involved in one. Maybe they have loaners :P Will never hurt to ask. But between that and some hands on, I;'d hope the techno side makes more sense in the long run in what it is and how it's applied.

I guess I just need to be honest in what I'm looking for. Something good for birds and a secondary not so expensive lens that's good for a bigger variety of things. I'm not looking to break a bank, so I need to steer them away from 'the best of the best'.

Also gotta ask, what is the 'crop' factor?

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#14 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 04:43 PM

So as it relates to BIF shots normally a lens with a small aperture will pick up birds faster (auto focus relies on light...the more light hitting the sensor the better and faster AF kicks in). It's not always the case, but most of the time it holds true. This is why prime lenses are usually better than zooms for BIF shots.

Here are 3 pictures of some more 'difficult' subjects.

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

#15 folkeye

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 04:54 PM

Yeah, I was having trouble getting shots of the Terns with my point and shoot...awesome to watch though. Those pictures are great.

I mentioned in the post above, but what is the crop factor you speak of?

And I do know refining photos after getting them is a whole other beast I'll have to worry about later. What program is recommended? I do have Photoshop, but not a lot of skill outside using the paintbrush like the real deal to color pictures. Never went that far in my learning of all the other goodies it offers. Don't know much about masks and such.

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#16 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 05:04 PM

It's not a super easy explanation...

Basically, it's a comparison of sensor size to a standard (35mm) sensor. The Nikon sensor are smaller than the sensor on a full frame (35mm) camera, while the Canon sensors are smaller still.

Here's the best picture I found explaining it.

Posted Image

Black is a full frame sensor, red is a 1.3x crop, yellow is a 1.5x (Nikon) and green is a 1.6x (Canon).

Here's the link to the website that goes into more depth on it.

http://digital-photo...actor-explained

#17 Jenny81

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 05:15 PM

Ahhh, thanks for clearing that up. You learn something new every day.

@ Folkeye, I also think you should choose what brand by what you like, not because someone told you what to get. I just favor Canon because I find it easier to use and Joejr favors Nikon from his experience. Remember that cameras are tools to get better pictures, even if you get a great camera it doesn't mean you will get good pictures without work.

It would be a very good idea to learn manual mode. It seems like a lot of work at first, but the end results are usually better. All of my pictures are also taken with manual focus, because the Sigma lens I started out with had auto focus problems, so now I just prefer manual, especially when shooting with branches in the foreground or background. To each his own I guess.

Life list: 158
Yard list: 82 - latest yard bird : Wood Duck
Latest Lifers:  Ring-billed Gull, EVENING GROSBEAK, WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Snow Goose, Canada Warbler


#18 folkeye

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 05:17 PM

It's not a super easy explanation...

Basically, it's a comparison of sensor size to a standard (35mm) sensor. The Nikon sensor are smaller than the sensor on a full frame (35mm) camera, while the Canon sensors are smaller still.

Here's the best picture I found explaining it.

Posted Image

Black is a full frame sensor, red is a 1.3x crop, yellow is a 1.5x (Nikon) and green is a 1.6x (Canon).

Here's the link to the website that goes into more depth on it.

http://digital-photo...actor-explained


I will have to read that when I get a moment. Is having more a full frame better for birding or getting the crop factor since that seems to narrow things down?

Starting a NEW gallery of my better bird shots. Not happy with Flickrs over-busy re-design.

http://www.ipernity....e/293739?rev=31

Recent Lifers: Arctic Tern, Tufted Puffin, Merlin, Northern Hawk Owl, Northwestern Crow, Pacific Wren, Pine Grosbeak, American Dipper, White-winged Scoter

 

Blue-footed Booby, Lincoln's Sparrow, Nelson's Sparrow, Pacific Golden Plover, Marsh Wren, Dunlin, Sora, Snow Goose, Herring Gull, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, American Redstart, California Thrasher, Cactus Wren, Black-vented Shearwater (Big 260), Sandhill Crane, Greater White-fronted Goose

 

 

 

 


#19 Joejr14

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 05:19 PM

Many folks like the crop factor as it gets them extra reach on their lenses. Though, many professional bird photographers like full frame cameras for the bigger sensor (less noise, usually sharper, etc).

#20 canon eos

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 11:06 PM

Okay... I've always loved taking photos, I love birding and I know the two can go hand in hand...........................and when people start talking 200mm and the likes....it's still a foreign language to me.
Any tips or smacks in the right direction would be appreciated.


I know that many of the good photographers have taken years to learn their craft. The skills to produce high -quality images, especially of birds, will take considerable time and effort, much beyond help on forums, here or elsewhere. I would strongly suggest buying some good books on photography. They will pay dividends many times over in fewer frustrations, plus will definitely help with photo gear considerations.

The Scott Kelby books come well-received and are available as a set. You might look into this as part of your pursuit toward doing bird photography.

http://www.amazon.ca...s/dp/0321678737




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