Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Magnifying the passion for nature. Zeiss Victory Harpia 95. New!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

A Report on the Swarovski TLS-APO Adapter with the Olympus OM-D

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 23 votes, 5.00 average.
Old Monday 1st October 2012, 04:23   #1
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
A Report on the Swarovski TLS-APO Adapter with the Olympus OM-D

Last Tuesday I received my Swarovski TLS-APO adapter. This is a report on my first experiences using it with the Swarovski ATS 80 HD scope, 25-50X eyepiece, and my Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera. I got the Olympus earlier this year right when they came out, as a smaller camera that would be easier to carry than my SLR, but also with the intention of trying digiscoping again for the first time in years. Way down below I have attached iPhone snapshots of the camera with the TLS-APO attached, and the entire digiscoping rig. You'll note I also have the Swarovski balance rail for the ATS scope. I haven't seen many reports about digiscoping with the Olympus OM-D.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...ro_TLS-APO.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...aro_set-up.JPG

The adapter is well made and I like the way it works. I have the version that is used with the older scopes. There is a big "sleeve" that must be installed over the eyepiece. It's a challenge to study the illustrations and learn how to put it on the eyepiece; you have to completely remove the eyepiece first. But once you figure it out, it's a pretty slick system. It makes the eyepiece significantly "fatter" and it covers up the zoom markings, but the zoom still works and you still have full easy use of the scope for normal non-digiscoping use. I will probably leave this sleeve on the eyepiece all the time, so I won't ever be able to see the zoom markings. However, as you change the zoom with the sleeve installed, there is a spring-loaded set of hidden pins that snap into place at 7 different positions from low to high zoom. By listening to the "clicks" as I rotate the zoom, I can get a pretty rough idea of how far I have zoomed in between 25 and 50. For example by going "3 clicks up" from 25X, I know I am exactly in the middle at 37.5X. The lowest "clicked in" zoom position is a little beyond 25X and the highest is just shy of 50X.

As you probably know, the camera lens is built into the TLS-APO and you cannot adjust aperture, only ISO and shutter speed. According to information from Clay Taylor, the effective f/stop for my set-up changes from about f/9.4 at 25X down to f/17 when zoomed into 50X (the numbers are a little different for different Swaro scope/eyepiece combinations). Because I have no control over the f/stop, I was curious what the depth of field would be, so I tried to test it by focusing the scope on some playing cards, outdoors. With a helper I set the cards up at slightly different distances from the scope and tried to get them both in focus. I also put a tape measure on an angle in front of the cards. This was fun but it proved harder than I expected to really judge the zone of critically sharp focus. Here are links to 3 full size high quality uncropped JPEG photos. The first one is at a distance of 10 meters with the zoom at 25X. Then I doubled the distance to 20 meters again at 25X, and the last photo is 20 meters at 50X.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...10meterDOF.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...DOF-low25X.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...OF-high50X.JPG

Because the tape measure is at about a 25 degree angle, you need to multiply the measurements on the tape by ~0.90 (cosine of 25 degrees) to get a direct idea of the true depth of field. But I find it hard to even say where the zone of sharpness begins and ends. I think I have about 3 inches of critically sharp depth of field at 10 meters and 25X, and between 6 and 8 inches or perhaps considerably more depth of field at 20 meters.

The lighting was poor during this test, getting worse toward the end (a little wind too), and the ISO and shutter speeds varied considerably on the 3 shots (ISO 320 & 1/250 sec. on the first 10 meter shot, ISO 640 & 1/320 sec. on the first 20 meter shot at 25X, and ISO 1000 & 1/125th sec. on the final 20 meter shot at 50X). But the 3 photos also give you an idea of the uncropped micro-4/3 framing of a familiar "bird-sized" object. I observed no vignetting whatsoever across the whole zoom range.

It is very tricky getting the focus sharp. The slightest itsy bitsy turn of the big focus ring on the Swarovski scope can change the focus, especially at high power. So of course you need to use the magnified view on the camera LCD/EVF, if the bird will sit still to allow this. But even with a very static object and the image magnified on the LCD, I often find it hard to judge when I have tweaked the focus to the sharpest possible point. The Swarovski scope has no fine focus adjustment, and that might help. On my first trip out to find real living subjects, I found perhaps the most cooperative of all first targets: a TURTLE sunning itself some 40 meters out on a piece of wood sticking up in the middle of a pond. The first link below is the best shot I got, at low power (25X). I figured I should have been able to get a better shot at higher power, but I'm starting to learn that isn't necessarily so. The best shot at full high 50X, cropped less, really isn't any better.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Turtle_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Turtle_50X.JPG

I'm not sure whether the Image Stabilization on the Olympus camera body is working properly, or whether it helps. The Olympus OM-D has a feature where when you press the shutter button half way, Image Stabilization will engage and this helps greatly when trying to manually focus on a highly magnified image in the viewfinder or LCD screen. That feature was working with the kit lens, but it doesn't seem to work with this TLS-APO attached.

I suppose getting 10 or 20 (or 50) blurry shots for every one that is somewhat sharp is normal for digiscoping. But I was a little disappointed that even the best shots I've been able to get so far required quite a bit of sharpening. The good news is I did get some decent shots on just my first couple times out. I need to remember I'm just getting back into this and I still have a lot to learn. Overall I'm pleased, encouraged and hopeful that with more practice and continued experimenting I'll get more good shots. Here are links to the best bird photos I can share so far. Except for the snipe, all these were done with Image Stabilization turned off. Although the sharpness isn't quite what I'm used to from my SLR with a long lens, the scope gives me way more reach. The phoebe would have been way too far for my long lens. And by the way, my distance estimates could be way off.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di..._Snipe_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...owlegs_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...lldeer_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Phoebe_50X.JPG

Aside from the general struggles with focusing/sharpness, I had some trouble with the thumb screw that secures the TLS-APO to the sleeve/eyepiece. I would loosen the thumbscrew and gently try to pull the camera off, but it seemed to be stuck so I'd loosen the thumbscrew more. Eventually I realized I was loosening it too much because the thumbscrew fell out and I had to put it back in (it threads into a receiving brass piece on the other side). So I'm still trying to work that out.

The TLS-APO attached to the Olympus is a little bulky but very lightweight. It will be easy to sling it around behind me on a shoulder strap whenever I'm out birding with the scope.

Finally, after just 2 times out I'm sure I want to get a wireless remote. My Olympus corded remote cable release (RM-UC1) works fine, but because I need to pull the camera off frequently, it is a little hard to keep it securely plugged into the side of the camera, or alternatively constantly plug it in and unplug it when I'm putting the camera on/off the scope.

--Dave
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	OlympusOM-D_with_Swaro_TLS-APO.JPG
Views:	839
Size:	248.6 KB
ID:	407260  Click image for larger version

Name:	Olympus_Swaro_set-up.JPG
Views:	944
Size:	208.8 KB
ID:	407261  

Last edited by opticoholic : Monday 1st October 2012 at 14:05. Reason: minor corrections
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Monday 1st October 2012, 04:51   #2
wueku
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Basel
Posts: 42
Thanks for the good information. The images have potential.

greetings Kurt
wueku is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 1st October 2012, 14:43   #3
RJM
Don't Worry, Be Happy!
 
RJM's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 2,455
Thanks for the info Dave.

Interesting the Image Stabilzation doesn't seem to work. If it can't, then you really need to keep shutter speed close to 1/2000sec if you want a better hit rate. Can you program the camera for a non-reporting lens by inputing aperture F11 and FL=1000mm in the softmenu?

FWIW, I also think you should use a larger video head like a Manfrotto 501 class. An angled scope is always tough to keep balance with a dslr, especially if you are putting the camera on/off. In the end, it might be best to use this configuration for video rather than stills.

good luck!
RJM is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 1st October 2012, 15:19   #4
ClayTaylorTX
Registered User

 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Calallen (Corpus Christi) TX
Posts: 69
Good Report!

Hi Dave - Good report!

As always, shutter speeds are critical to getting sharp digiscoped images, and by all reports the High ISO performance of the EM-5 is the best of any micro 4/3 sensor. Do not be afraid to start out at something like ISO 2000, get a few sharp images, and then drop the ISO if you want less noise, etc.

I also had the brass part of the locking knob unscrew - I put a tiny drop of blue (semi-permanent) thread locker on the threads and the problem has not come back. I have also let Austria know about the issue.

BTW, I have found that having the TLS APO collar on the scope eyepiece gives a much larger gripping area, and it is actually easier to smoothly zoom the scope eyepiece with the collar in place, so mine is on there permanently!


Clay Taylor

Quote:
Originally Posted by opticoholic View Post
Last Tuesday I received my Swarovski TLS-APO adapter. This is a report on my first experiences using it with the Swarovski ATS 80 HD scope, 25-50X eyepiece, and my Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera. I got the Olympus earlier this year right when they came out, as a smaller camera that would be easier to carry than my SLR, but also with the intention of trying digiscoping again for the first time in years. Way down below I have attached iPhone snapshots of the camera with the TLS-APO attached, and the entire digiscoping rig. You'll note I also have the Swarovski balance rail for the ATS scope. I haven't seen many reports about digiscoping with the Olympus OM-D.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...ro_TLS-APO.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...aro_set-up.JPG

The adapter is well made and I like the way it works. I have the version that is used with the older scopes. There is a big "sleeve" that must be installed over the eyepiece. It's a challenge to study the illustrations and learn how to put it on the eyepiece; you have to completely remove the eyepiece first. But once you figure it out, it's a pretty slick system. It makes the eyepiece significantly "fatter" and it covers up the zoom markings, but the zoom still works and you still have full easy use of the scope for normal non-digiscoping use. I will probably leave this sleeve on the eyepiece all the time, so I won't ever be able to see the zoom markings. However, as you change the zoom with the sleeve installed, there is a spring-loaded set of hidden pins that snap into place at 7 different positions from low to high zoom. By listening to the "clicks" as I rotate the zoom, I can get a pretty rough idea of how far I have zoomed in between 25 and 50. For example by going "3 clicks up" from 25X, I know I am exactly in the middle at 37.5X. The lowest "clicked in" zoom position is a little beyond 25X and the highest is just shy of 50X.

As you probably know, the camera lens is built into the TLS-APO and you cannot adjust aperture, only ISO and shutter speed. According to information from Clay Taylor, the effective f/stop for my set-up changes from about f/9.4 at 25X down to f/17 when zoomed into 50X (the numbers are a little different for different Swaro scope/eyepiece combinations). Because I have no control over the f/stop, I was curious what the depth of field would be, so I tried to test it by focusing the scope on some playing cards, outdoors. With a helper I set the cards up at slightly different distances from the scope and tried to get them both in focus. I also put a tape measure on an angle in front of the cards. This was fun but it proved harder than I expected to really judge the zone of critically sharp focus. Here are links to 3 full size high quality uncropped JPEG photos. The first one is at a distance of 10 meters with the zoom at 25X. Then I doubled the distance to 20 meters again at 25X, and the last photo is 20 meters at 50X.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...10meterDOF.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...DOF-low25X.JPG
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Dig...OF-high50X.JPG

Because the tape measure is at about a 25 degree angle, you need to multiply the measurements on the tape by ~0.90 (cosine of 25 degrees) to get a direct idea of the true depth of field. But I find it hard to even say where the zone of sharpness begins and ends. I think I have about 3 inches of critically sharp depth of field at 10 meters and 25X, and between 6 and 8 inches or perhaps considerably more depth of field at 20 meters.

The lighting was poor during this test, getting worse toward the end (a little wind too), and the ISO and shutter speeds varied considerably on the 3 shots (ISO 320 & 1/250 sec. on the first 10 meter shot, ISO 640 & 1/320 sec. on the first 20 meter shot at 25X, and ISO 1000 & 1/125th sec. on the final 20 meter shot at 50X). But the 3 photos also give you an idea of the uncropped micro-4/3 framing of a familiar "bird-sized" object. I observed no vignetting whatsoever across the whole zoom range.

It is very tricky getting the focus sharp. The slightest itsy bitsy turn of the big focus ring on the Swarovski scope can change the focus, especially at high power. So of course you need to use the magnified view on the camera LCD/EVF, if the bird will sit still to allow this. But even with a very static object and the image magnified on the LCD, I often find it hard to judge when I have tweaked the focus to the sharpest possible point. The Swarovski scope has no fine focus adjustment, and that might help. On my first trip out to find real living subjects, I found perhaps the most cooperative of all first targets: a TURTLE sunning itself some 40 meters out on a piece of wood sticking up in the middle of a pond. The first link below is the best shot I got, at low power (25X). I figured I should have been able to get a better shot at higher power, but I'm starting to learn that isn't necessarily so. The best shot at full high 50X, cropped less, really isn't any better.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Turtle_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Turtle_50X.JPG

I'm not sure whether the Image Stabilization on the Olympus camera body is working properly, or whether it helps. The Olympus OM-D has a feature where when you press the shutter button half way, Image Stabilization will engage and this helps greatly when trying to manually focus on a highly magnified image in the viewfinder or LCD screen. That feature was working with the kit lens, but it doesn't seem to work with this TLS-APO attached.

I suppose getting 10 or 20 (or 50) blurry shots for every one that is somewhat sharp is normal for digiscoping. But I was a little disappointed that even the best shots I've been able to get so far required quite a bit of sharpening. The good news is I did get some decent shots on just my first couple times out. I need to remember I'm just getting back into this and I still have a lot to learn. Overall I'm pleased, encouraged and hopeful that with more practice and continued experimenting I'll get more good shots. Here are links to the best bird photos I can share so far. Except for the snipe, all these were done with Image Stabilization turned off. Although the sharpness isn't quite what I'm used to from my SLR with a long lens, the scope gives me way more reach. The phoebe would have been way too far for my long lens. And by the way, my distance estimates could be way off.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di..._Snipe_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...owlegs_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...lldeer_25X.JPG
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...Phoebe_50X.JPG

Aside from the general struggles with focusing/sharpness, I had some trouble with the thumb screw that secures the TLS-APO to the sleeve/eyepiece. I would loosen the thumbscrew and gently try to pull the camera off, but it seemed to be stuck so I'd loosen the thumbscrew more. Eventually I realized I was loosening it too much because the thumbscrew fell out and I had to put it back in (it threads into a receiving brass piece on the other side). So I'm still trying to work that out.

The TLS-APO attached to the Olympus is a little bulky but very lightweight. It will be easy to sling it around behind me on a shoulder strap whenever I'm out birding with the scope.

Finally, after just 2 times out I'm sure I want to get a wireless remote. My Olympus corded remote cable release (RM-UC1) works fine, but because I need to pull the camera off frequently, it is a little hard to keep it securely plugged into the side of the camera, or alternatively constantly plug it in and unplug it when I'm putting the camera on/off the scope.

--Dave
ClayTaylorTX is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 1st October 2012, 16:25   #5
Brian2
Registered User
 
Brian2's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: essex
Posts: 1,216
good report and very helpful s I consider my digiscope set up investment.Thanks for posting it.
Brian2 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 8th October 2012, 03:41   #6
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
The conditions were ideal this morning when I went out for my third time digiscoping. I found a couple more cooperative targets. Gotta love those flycatchers that always come back to the same perch, and I stumbled upon a Green Heron hunting, standing like a statue on a rock very close. I think I'm getting a little sharper results from trying to use higher ISO to get very high shutter speed for my first shots as Clay and RJM recommended. I didn't have much time with the Green Heron before it flew away; maybe I could have done even better with even higher ISO/shutter speed. These were cropped and sharpened from jpegs, and I tried to smooth out some of the noise in the background. I still have a lot to learn about post-processing. The white balance/color tint is not consistent on the 2 green heron shots. I'll try to fix that when I have more time.

Black Phoebe at 25X, ~15 meters away, ISO 800 & 1/1250 sec
Green Heron at 25X, ~10 meters away, ISO 800 & 1/400 sec
Green Heron at 25X, ~ 20 meters away, ISO 1250 & 1/1600 sec.

I think I'm seeing some improvement and I feel pretty good about the results so far.

I figured out how to input the focal length of the lens in the camera menu (I entered 800 mm), but I still don't think the Image Stabilization engages when I depress the shutter button half-way, and I'm still not sure whether this problem is just me not knowing what to do, or my particular camera, or just a limitation of all adapted lenses mounted on the Olympus OM-D. I need more time to figure this out.

It might be quite a while until I can get out again, but I'll try to add more to this thread, especially if I can get yet better results.

--Dave

Last edited by opticoholic : Monday 8th October 2012 at 03:46.
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Saturday 13th October 2012, 21:31   #7
Phone Skope
Registered User

 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Utah
Posts: 8
Hope to have a set up like that soon! Thanks for posting!
Phone Skope is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 14th October 2012, 06:22   #8
Neil
Registered User

 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Hong Kong (ex Sydney)
Posts: 10,173
Dave,
The Green Heron at 10 meters certainly showed some nice detail. Does the OM-D have any mirror slap or is it fully electronic. If it does you should fire bursts of 5 -7 frames at a time and look at the middle ones.
I doubt the Image Stabilising would help so would be better OFF.
Neil.

[quote=opticoholic;2557795]The conditions were ideal this morning when I went out for my third time digiscoping. I found a couple more cooperative targets. Gotta love those flycatchers that always come back to the same perch, and I stumbled upon a Green Heron hunting, standing like a statue on a rock very close. I think I'm getting a little sharper results from trying to use higher ISO to get very high shutter speed for my first shots as Clay and RJM recommended. I didn't have much time with the Green Heron before it flew away; maybe I could have done even better with even higher ISO/shutter speed. These were cropped and sharpened from jpegs, and I tried to smooth out some of the noise in the background. I still have a lot to learn about post-processing. The white balance/color tint is not consistent on the 2 green heron shots. I'll try to fix that when I have more time.

Black Phoebe at 25X, ~15 meters away, ISO 800 & 1/1250 sec
Green Heron at 25X, ~10 meters away, ISO 800 & 1/400 sec
Green Heron at 25X, ~ 20 meters away, ISO 1250 & 1/1600 sec.

I think I'm seeing some improvement and I feel pretty good about the results so far.

I figured out how to input the focal length of the lens in the camera menu (I entered 800 mm), but I still don't think the Image Stabilization engages when I depress the shutter button half-way, and I'm still not sure whether this problem is just me not knowing what to do, or my particular camera, or just a limitation of all adapted lenses mounted on the Olympus OM-D. I need more time to figure this out.

It might be quite a while until I can get out again, but I'll try to add more to this thread, especially if I can get yet better results.

--Dave[/QUO
Neil is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 18:47   #9
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
Neil,
I understand that even though my camera is mirrorless, if it has a mechanical shutter, it can still introduce vibration (though I presume much less than the "slap" of a mirror). In this regard an electronic shutter is more desirable for digiscoping, as it contributes zero vibration.

As near as I can tell, the Olympus OM-D does not have an electronic shutter. Seems like the type of shutter is sometimes not given in camera specifications. In a Google search just now, I found this quote: "Lacking the electronic shutter option of the newer Panasonic G5, the OM-D E-M5 is not completely silent..." Another link praised Panasonic for employing "totally quiet electronic shutters..." So the mechanical shutter appears to be a disadvantage of the Olympus OM-D for digiscoping.

Assuming that the OM-D has only a mechanical shutter, you are telling me to try high-speed bursts and the middle frames may be better in sharpness? I will do that. Thanks for the suggestion.

I just received my new wireless remote and I hope to post more of my best results before too long.

--Dave

Last edited by opticoholic : Wednesday 17th October 2012 at 18:53. Reason: minor corrections
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Sunday 4th November 2012, 22:55   #10
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
Here are a few more examples of my best results. The Redwing Blackbird was very close, cropped only on the sides. The Peregrine was pretty close, but challenging, very high up in a tree in bright sunlight, and it was very busy consuming its prey. I had hoped for something better, but glad at least I got a decent shot... could be quite a while before I will have another chance like that.

Redwing Blackbird at 25X, ISO 800 & 1/640 sec
Long-billed Dowitcher at 25X, ISO 800 & 1/1250 sec
Snowy Egret at 25X, ISO 320 & 1/2000 sec
Peregrine Falcon at 37.5X, ISO 1250 & 1/1250 sec

I'm using a wireless shutter release now, and mostly I try to use continuous high speed bursts as Neil suggested.

--Dave

PS. The photo of the Peregrine does show that the Olympus OM-D handles a wide dynamic range pretty well. Someday with more skill, working from the RAW file instead of the jpeg, I could probably make one of the Peregrine shots look a little better.

Last edited by opticoholic : Sunday 4th November 2012 at 23:49. Reason: Added "PS"
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Monday 5th November 2012, 03:12   #11
RJM
Don't Worry, Be Happy!
 
RJM's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 2,455
All those are well exposed and sharp enough. I see you could use both Pattern and Centerweighted metering. Where you able to input both the aperture and focal length in the OM-D softmenu?
RJM is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 8th November 2012, 23:23   #12
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
RJM: I learned how to input the focal length in the camera menus, but I'm not sure it is possible to specify the aperture in the menus on the OM-D. I'm also not sure it has really helped when the focal length is entered into the camera, and I'm not sure I understand why it would help for the camera to know what the aperture of the system is, but maybe you can help me learn on that point... The focal length as well as the effective aperture of the lens/adapter + scope changes as the zoom is changed on the eyepiece. Mostly I leave the zoom at the lowest 25X, which according to a spreadsheet from Swarovski equates to ~750mm (full frame) and f/9.4. As far as metering, I usually use center-weighted as a start to get the right exposure, but I constantly adjust it by changing ISO and/or shutter speed.

I'd sure be interested to hear from other people who are using the OM-D for digiscoping, especially with a Swarovski scope.
--Dave
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 9th November 2012, 00:40   #13
RJM
Don't Worry, Be Happy!
 
RJM's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 2,455
This test may be of interest to some.

Dave, usually providing the focal length and aperture values for a non-cpu/reporting lens allows the camera to properly meter in Pattern or Center-weighted mode. Otherwise, it would fall back to TTL and/or Spot. While I can't say for sure, I would think focal length would also assist the image stabilization function if activated.

Last edited by RJM : Friday 9th November 2012 at 01:05.
RJM is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 9th November 2012, 09:33   #14
Tom Lawson
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: York,England
Posts: 171
A very interesting review from 'imaging resource' for those of us contemplating using the Canon 7D on the ATX system. 'Mirror slap' is obviously a problem and I note that the pictures were taken using delayed shutter release-perhaps not ideal.Has anybody any experience of using either the Sony Alpha A77 or A65,both of which have translucent mirrors that don't flip-up during shooting,but which have viewfinders almost comparable to standard DSLRs?
Tom Lawson.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RJM View Post
This test may be of interest to some.

Dave, usually providing the focal length and aperture values for a non-cpu/reporting lens allows the camera to properly meter in Pattern or Center-weighted mode. Otherwise, it would fall back to TTL and/or Spot. While I can't say for sure, I would think focal length would also assist the image stabilization function if activated.
Tom Lawson is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 9th November 2012, 23:16   #15
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
RJM: Thanks for sharing that digiscoping article! I did find it very interesting, specifically the importance of framing your subject dead center, and the softness caused in part by diffraction, which I believe you had mentioned in another thread. But the article pretty much matches my experience with digiscoping vs. DSLR+long lens photography. The new Swaro digiscoping set-up is working as well as I hoped. Under ideal conditions, when I get pretty close to a cooperative bird, I'm getting results that can approach but not equal what I get with a high quality professional telephoto lens. The advantage with the digisoping is that I don't have to get as close to the birds as I do with the SLR (a BIG advantage). The disadvantage is that in order to get a really good image, I usually need good conditions--bright/sunny & low wind; a cooperative bird--stationary or moving very slowly, and the end result may look great only at smaller pixel resolutions or smaller prints.

I will keep practicing and eventually I'll share more of my best results, but I work full time so it could be a while. I hope to see some other people join this thread. I feel like I'm one of the only people digiscoping with the Olympus OM-D and a Swarovski scope.

--Dave

Last edited by opticoholic : Friday 9th November 2012 at 23:18.
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Sunday 3rd March 2013, 10:10   #16
horukuru
Here I Come !
 
horukuru's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Near with Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah at Borneo Island
Posts: 6,212
Dave,

What do you think so far of the combo for Digiscoping ?
horukuru is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 4th March 2013, 22:10   #17
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
horukuru,
Thanks for keeping this thread alive! I like the results I'm getting with the Olympus OM-D, Swarovski scope and TLS-APO adapter. Perhaps the biggest advantage of this adapter is that it offers excellent quality while allowing you to focus only on the scope (instead of needing to focus both the scope and the camera). I don't have much new to say that I haven't already said above. Focusing is tricky and zooming in with the LCD screen is a must. I get my best results with the eyepiece at 25X, and with bright sunny conditions and very low wind. I'm not sure the Olympus is the best camera to use with the TLS-APO. I'm sure a lot of cameras would work well with it, but that's another advantage of the TLS-APO: you can try it with lots of different cameras.

I will add a few more example photos later in the year before I try to bring this thread to a conclusion, but here is one more recent photo from about a month ago:

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/38295196/Di...n_Bluebird.jpg

--Dave
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Sunday 17th March 2013, 03:20   #18
zuiko
Registered User

 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 89
I have the OMD and a Nikon D600 with the TLSAPO on an ATX.

My initial attempts with the OMD and TLS were very ordinary. I tried self timer of 2 seconds with no improvement.

Subsequently learned of Anti-shock in the custom menu. Day and night difference.

But best of all I found that my 12-50mm zoom could simply be pressed against eyepiece rubber surround and zoomed till vignetting is gone, and this results in amazing pictures. So I hardly need the TLS APO!

With the Nikon the TLS APO vignettes except if you use DX mode and the image quality is superb as might be expected from a better sensor.

Still like the OMD and 12-50 pressed on the eyepiece for its convenience and ability to get normal shots and scoped shots without any mods. The lens size and rubber eye ring are practically designed to be used this way!!
zuiko is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 17th March 2013, 07:24   #19
horukuru
Here I Come !
 
horukuru's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Near with Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah at Borneo Island
Posts: 6,212
Does the Anti-Shock works now with TLS APO ?
horukuru is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 18th March 2013, 06:39   #20
Dale Forbes
SWAROVSKI OPTIK Austria
 
Dale Forbes's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Tirol, Austria
Posts: 401
Blog Entries: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by zuiko View Post
I have the OMD and a Nikon D600 with the TLSAPO on an ATX.

My initial attempts with the OMD and TLS were very ordinary. I tried self timer of 2 seconds with no improvement.

Subsequently learned of Anti-shock in the custom menu. Day and night difference.

But best of all I found that my 12-50mm zoom could simply be pressed against eyepiece rubber surround and zoomed till vignetting is gone, and this results in amazing pictures. So I hardly need the TLS APO!

With the Nikon the TLS APO vignettes except if you use DX mode and the image quality is superb as might be expected from a better sensor.

Still like the OMD and 12-50 pressed on the eyepiece for its convenience and ability to get normal shots and scoped shots without any mods. The lens size and rubber eye ring are practically designed to be used this way!!
Hi Zuiko,
when using the image stabilisation in the OMD EM5, you will need to make sure that you tell the camera what effective focal length you are using. If you need to use your camera lens on -say- 25mm to get rid of vignetting and your spotting scope is on 25x magnification then you will have roughly a 625mm focal length. You will then want to turn the camera on to IS1 and press INFO and rotate through until you find the closest setting- in this case 600mm (or 800 or 1000mm if your focal length is higher).
The image stabilisation works particularly well in video mode as it seems to use both the 5-direction mechanical sensor stabilisation and electronic-crop stabilisation in video mode. This - for me - is the absolute dream setup for high focal length video at the moment.
Happy digiscoping,
Dale
__________________
Dale Forbes

www.birdinggame.com
Dale Forbes is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Monday 18th March 2013, 14:51   #21
opticoholic
Registered User
 
opticoholic's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: northern CA
Posts: 309
Quote:
Originally Posted by horukuru View Post
Does the Anti-Shock works now with TLS APO ?
horukuru,
The Anti-Shock feature on the Olympus OM-D allows you to create a delay between when you press the shutter button and the actual shutter release. I don't think it will help me too much because I'm using a remote wireless shutter release, so I just try to wait until the scope is completely steady before I fire.

zuiko,
Thanks for joining the conversation. Interesting that you had better results using the TLS-APO adapter on your D600 compared to the Olympus OM-D. When you have time, try to share with us some OM-D + TLS-APO + ATX examples. Your ATX scope should be a little better than my old ATS 80 HD scope, plus I was told the APO-TLS adapter was designed specifically/mostly for the ATX scope, so theoretically you should be able to do a little better than me. In DX crop mode, I'm surprised if the D600 sensor resolution is a lot better than the Olympus. I'm getting a Nikon D7100 soon, and eventually I'll probably give it a try with the TLS-APO, but that might belong in a different thread.

--Dave
opticoholic is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2012 2013 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Swarovski TLS 800 ? greeneagle5 The Birdforum Digiscoping Forum 29 Monday 3rd January 2011 19:51

{googleads}
Opticron - NEW DBA VHD+ 8x42, 10x42 coming soon

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.24855900 seconds with 32 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 20:53.