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Sony RX100 for Digiscoping

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Old Tuesday 16th October 2012, 18:40   #26
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I agree with Marsh Warbler, excellent shots. I too cannot view the videoclip.

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Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 00:24   #27
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I agree with Marsh Warbler, excellent shots. I too cannot view the videoclip.

Mike
Video works impressively well for me.
I'm astounded by the quality of the image for a 3000mm shot. You must have had near ideal atmospherics. Very fine indeed, shows what a great scope and camera can deliver.
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Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 09:25   #28
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Video works impressively well for me.
I'm astounded by the quality of the image for a 3000mm shot. You must have had near ideal atmospherics. Very fine indeed, shows what a great scope and camera can deliver.
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Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 09:33   #29
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50 cash back

I see Sony are offering a 50 cash back offer (UK) as of today on this camera.
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Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 11:33   #30
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I wish. The pollution levels have been particularly bad the last couple of days. This morning you could'nt see across Hong Kong Harbour.
I'm going down to Sydney tomorrow so hope to test it out in some really good light.
More soon, Neil.
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Old Wednesday 17th October 2012, 23:28   #31
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I've always liked the Sweep Panorama Mode of the Sony digicams so I thought I would try it while digiscoping on Tuesday.
It would be useful for doing bird counts and checking for flags.
Neil
Sony RX100 and Kowa Lens/scope and Kowa 30x Eyepiece and Swarovski UCA adapter
Mai Po Nature Reserve,
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October 2012
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Old Thursday 18th October 2012, 00:36   #32
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I've always liked the Sweep Panorama Mode of the Sony digicams so I thought I would try it while digiscoping on Tuesday.
It would be useful for doing bird counts and checking for flags.
Neil
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Outstanding idea!
Hope this kind of shot becomes more the norm when describing birding sites, it could provide a much better sense of the place than the usual one bird closeup.
Meanwhile, real life panoramas such as yours would be an excellent basis for an identification quiz. Maybe a new variant on 'Field work is hard work'.
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Old Thursday 18th October 2012, 08:23   #33
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I've always liked the Sweep Panorama Mode of the Sony digicams
excellent idea! great result! is the panorama made with internal camera software or a specific software like Hugin? swaro UCA is compatible with kowa va3? I think not
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Old Sunday 21st October 2012, 09:11   #34
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excellent idea! great result! is the panorama made with internal camera software or a specific software like Hugin? swaro UCA is compatible with kowa va3? I think not
The Sonys stitch the panorama automatically in the camera.
The UCA won't fit on the Kowa VA3. I use the Vortex PS100.
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Old Monday 22nd October 2012, 13:45   #35
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Hi Neil,

I've been following this thread with interest and also re-reading the one you started on the Nikon V1. Would you say you prefer the RX100 to the V1 or is there not much to choose between them?

Obviously the Nikon has the advantage of a viewfinder, but I'm guessing the Zeiss lens on the Sony is better than the Nikon kit lenses?

Thanks a lot.

Malcolm
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Old Tuesday 23rd October 2012, 09:14   #36
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Sony software

Hi Neil,

Yes the Sony panorama function is really useful, I use it when hill walking. A great innovation of your's to use it with the scope.

Another useful feature of software supplied with the compact Sony cameras, "PMB" or the recently upgraded "PlayMemories Home", is the ability to grab stills frames from video. You can run the video frame by frame and grab an image of choice. This isn't a screen grab, the software actually captures the frame as a jpeg.

Attached is an image grabbed from MP4 video using the PMB software. This was taken with a low end WX7 Sony compact and Celestron Ultima 80 ED scope.The moorhen was stretching it's wing and I grabbed this image at a suitable position.The image has not been manipulated only reduced in size for uploading.

It would be really interesting to see the quality of an image grabbed from high quality 1080p, 50 frame video taken with the RX100 on a high end scope. You should have had "PlayMemories Home" supplied with the RX100.

Maybe something you could try when you've got the time and give us your thoughts.
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Old Tuesday 23rd October 2012, 11:39   #37
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Originally Posted by scotview View Post
Hi Neil,

Yes the Sony panorama function is really useful, I use it when hill walking. A great innovation of your's to use it with the scope.

Another useful feature of software supplied with the compact Sony cameras, "PMB" or the recently upgraded "PlayMemories Home", is the ability to grab stills frames from video. You can run the video frame by frame and grab an image of choice. This isn't a screen grab, the software actually captures the frame as a jpeg.

Attached is an image grabbed from MP4 video using the PMB software. This was taken with a low end WX7 Sony compact and Celestron Ultima 80 ED scope.The moorhen was stretching it's wing and I grabbed this image at a suitable position.The image has not been manipulated only reduced in size for uploading.

It would be really interesting to see the quality of an image grabbed from high quality 1080p, 50 frame video taken with the RX100 on a high end scope. You should have had "PlayMemories Home" supplied with the RX100.

Maybe something you could try when you've got the time and give us your thoughts.
IMHO The quality dependes on settings of video/photocamera. If you rec video at 1080p/50fps every single frame is a photo shot at 1/50 sec (or faster). The question is: can Sony RX100 record video in "manual mode" (i.e I can set manually aperture and/or shutter speed and/or iso sensivity etc.)? Usually compact photocameras records video in "automatic mode"...
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Old Tuesday 23rd October 2012, 23:37   #38
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Originally Posted by scotview View Post
Hi Neil,

Yes the Sony panorama function is really useful, I use it when hill walking. A great innovation of your's to use it with the scope.

Another useful feature of software supplied with the compact Sony cameras, "PMB" or the recently upgraded "PlayMemories Home", is the ability to grab stills frames from video. You can run the video frame by frame and grab an image of choice. This isn't a screen grab, the software actually captures the frame as a jpeg.

Attached is an image grabbed from MP4 video using the PMB software. This was taken with a low end WX7 Sony compact and Celestron Ultima 80 ED scope.The moorhen was stretching it's wing and I grabbed this image at a suitable position.The image has not been manipulated only reduced in size for uploading.

It would be really interesting to see the quality of an image grabbed from high quality 1080p, 50 frame video taken with the RX100 on a high end scope. You should have had "PlayMemories Home" supplied with the RX100.

Maybe something you could try when you've got the time and give us your thoughts.
That's a nice function. I'll try it out.
Thanks, Neil.
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Old Thursday 25th October 2012, 15:04   #39
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IMHO The quality dependes on settings of video/photocamera. If you rec video at 1080p/50fps every single frame is a photo shot at 1/50 sec (or faster). The question is: can Sony RX100 record video in "manual mode" (i.e I can set manually aperture and/or shutter speed and/or iso sensivity etc.)? Usually compact photocameras records video in "automatic mode"...
You can shoot video with the RX100 in their dedicated Video Mode which is an Auto Function or you can shoot in the other Modes P,S,A and M.
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Old Friday 26th October 2012, 16:10   #40
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You can shoot video with the RX100 in their dedicated Video Mode which is an Auto Function or you can shoot in the other Modes P,S,A and M.
Neil
thank you Neil... at this point I want to buy it... but I think that max magnification with VA3 + rx100 is 28x, is correct? 14x * (100mm/50mm)
For digiscoping with RX100 is the 25xLER better than 30wide?
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Old Friday 26th October 2012, 23:40   #41
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thank you Neil... at this point I want to buy it... but I think that max magnification with VA3 + rx100 is 28x, is correct? 14x * (100mm/50mm)
For digiscoping with RX100 is the 25xLER better than 30wide?
Yes, you are right. I only use the VA3 for cameras with "difficult" digiscoping lenses , like the Canon G series and longer zoom digicams ( eg Nikon S9100 and Sony DSC HX9V ).
The 25x LER eyepiece has too much Eye Relief for the RX100 so the camera has to be too far from the eyepiece. The 30x will give the best results, closely followed by the 20-60 zoom ( with universal adapter ).
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Old Saturday 27th October 2012, 09:49   #42
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Hi Neil,

I've been following this thread with interest and also re-reading the one you started on the Nikon V1. Would you say you prefer the RX100 to the V1 or is there not much to choose between them?

Obviously the Nikon has the advantage of a viewfinder, but I'm guessing the Zeiss lens on the Sony is better than the Nikon kit lenses?

Thanks a lot.

Malcolm
I'd be interested to hear thoughts on this comparisson too. My J1 has started playing up (only a couple of months old) and is already on it's second visit to Nikon. Hopefully this time they will bother sorting it out this time rather than just returning it with a generic checked and cleaned note!

I have been toying with replacing my P300 with a RX100 but haven't done so yet, if it could also replace the J1 as a primary digiscoping camera I think I'd go for it. To be honest I'd quite happily not see the J1 again as it has caused me to much hassle, just need to get it repaired (or hopefully replaced) so that I can sell it.
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Old Sunday 28th October 2012, 00:36   #43
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I'd be interested to hear thoughts on this comparisson too. My J1 has started playing up (only a couple of months old) and is already on it's second visit to Nikon. Hopefully this time they will bother sorting it out this time rather than just returning it with a generic checked and cleaned note!

I have been toying with replacing my P300 with a RX100 but haven't done so yet, if it could also replace the J1 as a primary digiscoping camera I think I'd go for it. To be honest I'd quite happily not see the J1 again as it has caused me to much hassle, just need to get it repaired (or hopefully replaced) so that I can sell it.
Sorry to hear about your J1 problems.
The comparison is now impacted by the announcement of the Nikon V2. The new 18.5/1.8 lens for the V2 might be step up from the zooms. I've always preferred to zoom an eyepiece than zoom a lens too far.
For the V1 against the RX100 -
Nikon V1
Pros - Electronic Viewfinder
- screw thread in lens for adapter ( 40.5 mm )
- high speed frames per second ( 5/10/20/60 ) with Raw
- silent in Electronic Mode.
- easily selectable HD Video Mode with separate settings to stills
- IR Remote Control
- bulit in ND Filter for Video
- excellent battery life (same battery as D7000 and D800)
- huge buffer means that you can continue shooting
- and of course ability to use other legacy lenses with the FT1 adapter
Negs
- no rotatable screen
- only 10 megs
- overheats in summer in Video Mode after about 10 mins
- only 5x digital crop for MF

Sony RX100
Pros - very sharp Carl Zeiss lens to full zoom ( f1.8 ) 28 -100 mm
- little vignetting with zoom and fixed eyepieces ( using Universal Adpt)
- 20 megs good for cropping
- large sensor gives excellent quality
- fits in a pocket so always with you
- Sweep Panorama Mode ( stitched in-camera)
- hi quality HD Video ( 60/50 fps at 24 megs/sec )
- 3 shot Self-timer Mode ( V1 only 1 shot )
Negs
- no Remote Control
- no rotatable screen
- no Electronic Viewfinder ( I digiscope 90% from hides so not as much of a problem as out in the sunshine)
- shorter battery life.
- buttons are a bit fiddly and hard to see in the darkness of the hide

Overall I would give the RX100 9/10 for image quality, 8/10 for Operation and 8/10 for other functions.
The V1 8/10 image quality ( less difference at under 30 meters ),9/10 for operation and 7/10 for other functions ( no Sweep Panorama which I like a lot)
The new V2 should narrow the gap in image quality so the ability to use a Remote and screw thread for adapters will swing the vote back in it's favor.
You will improve your digiscoping with both cameras though.
Hope this helps a bit.
Neil
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Oct 201
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Old Sunday 28th October 2012, 09:18   #44
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Thanks very much for taking the trouble to post such an in-depth comparison, Neil. Seems to bear out the old saying that the perfect digiscoping camera still hasn't been made. Looks like a case of wait and see what the V2 brings to the table.

Thanks again.

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Old Monday 29th October 2012, 00:44   #45
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Very nice video captures, quite impressive.

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Old Monday 29th October 2012, 23:02   #46
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Thanks very much for taking the trouble to post such an in-depth comparison, Neil. Seems to bear out the old saying that the perfect digiscoping camera still hasn't been made. Looks like a case of wait and see what the V2 brings to the table.

Thanks again.

Malcolm
Malcolm,
If the V2 had a rotatable screen and Continuous Remote it would be very close.
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Old Thursday 1st November 2012, 02:48   #47
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Jersey Digiscoping by Kevin Bolton now has a few images with the RX 100. He has used many cameras and is saying he likes the RX100, his yellow rumped warbler has some of the finest feather detail I've ever seen.
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Old Thursday 1st November 2012, 03:44   #48
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Not to take props away from them, but I think you have to look at the Yellow Rumped Warbler pictures in context assuming he was using the 25x LER eyepiece on the Kowa884. Especially, if we assume these were the "best 5" of the ~250 shots taken based on the serial number spread!

Out of these 5, we can see EXIF data for 3 of them. The data indicates he took one at an effective focal length/aperture of fl=~1500mm @ F5.7 1/40sec and two at fl=~1000m @ F4 and 1/160sec and 1/400sec all at ISO100. Judging from their narrow DoF and light glints in the eyes, I suspect he was very close too and had good light.

Based on this, my take is that there is nothing extraordinary about the detail in these pics. Pretty much any camera will produce fine results under these conditions. I would hate to wade thru 250+ 20mp rez pics of just one bird though. And ~3000 shots in just 2 weeks!
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Old Thursday 1st November 2012, 06:32   #49
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Another pro for the V1

Hi Neil,

Thanks for posting the detailed comparison between the V1 and RX100.
Perhaps another advantage of the V1 (and J2) is the ability to clean the sensor.

I have recently scrapped a TZ7 due to dust on the inside of a lense.
Since the Sony lense extends every time the camera is switched on, do you think there is a greater risk of the lense taking in dust ? Could be a frustrating repair for such an expensive compact.

Maybe this isn't an issue though.

scotview

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Old Sunday 11th November 2012, 02:48   #50
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Hi Neil,

Thanks for posting the detailed comparison between the V1 and RX100.
Perhaps another advantage of the V1 (and J2) is the ability to clean the sensor.

I have recently scrapped a TZ7 due to dust on the inside of a lense.
Since the Sony lense extends every time the camera is switched on, do you think there is a greater risk of the lense taking in dust ? Could be a frustrating repair for such an expensive compact.

Maybe this isn't an issue though.

scotview
I've only had this problem with two cameras out of 30 over the years ( a Ricoh and a Canon) so I wouldn't worry too much about it.
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