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Sony Alpha Nex 6 for Digiscoping

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Old Monday 10th March 2014, 23:38   #26
MedicineMan4040
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Missed that part :)

But have the picture (pun intended) now :)
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Old Tuesday 11th March 2014, 17:15   #27
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A few more question please.

I looked a pics of digiscopers using their gear and it appears MOST use the angled modular so I chose that one...with the understanding that the angled model allows lower and thus more stable tripod mounting.

Now someone please remind me why I ordered the Sigma 30mm F2.8 for e-mount ??? Silly but I'm a bit overwhelmed by all the parts and pieces...reminds me of astro photography in that regard.

All kit should be here by weeks end. That means next week when I get off work (I work every other week) I can have a go at digiscoping!
Robert
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Old Tuesday 11th March 2014, 23:18   #28
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Originally Posted by MedicineMan4040 View Post
I looked a pics of digiscopers using their gear and it appears MOST use the angled modular so I chose that one...with the understanding that the angled model allows lower and thus more stable tripod mounting.

Now someone please remind me why I ordered the Sigma 30mm F2.8 for e-mount ??? Silly but I'm a bit overwhelmed by all the parts and pieces...reminds me of astro photography in that regard.

All kit should be here by weeks end. That means next week when I get off work (I work every other week) I can have a go at digiscoping!
Robert
Robert,
The Sigma 30/2.8 E is a good lens for digiscoping in Auto Focus Mode with the Sony Nexes. You set it up on the DCB 11 Adapter to center the lens to the eyepiece.
If your happy with manually focusing using the TLS APO method then the 30/2.8 is a good walk around lens for stills and video.
Here are some photos taken with this lens
http://www.flickr.com/photos/7892550...7637342808954/
Neil.
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 00:02   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil View Post
One of the things I like about the Sony Nexes is their low light capability (this time of the year I need it) .
This photo of Grey Herons was taken at iso 1,000 in Autoiso at 1/60th second.
I was using the Swarovski TLS APO so manual focus. There is no measurable noise in the photo , according to Colormancer.
Neil.
Sony Nex 6 and Swarovski STX 95 and Swarovski TLS APO Adapter
Mai Po Nature Reserve,
Hong Kong,China.
Feb 2014
Neil, not to be negative or anything, but with the caveat that I have not seen a full size version, I would expect my Pana GH2 to give you equally good results when on iso 1000. Now, a comparison at iso 3200 or above might show some differences (which might be negated on your GH3 or the new GH4) but with what I have available I just don't see it. Sorry.

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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 00:17   #30
Neil
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Neil, not to be negative or anything, but with the caveat that I have not seen a full size version, I would expect my Pana GH2 to give you equally good results when on iso 1000. Now, a comparison at iso 3200 or above might show some differences (which might be negated on your GH3 or the new GH4) but with what I have available I just don't see it. Sorry.

Niels
You're right Niels. I'm often at iso 1600 with the GH3.
I've been shooting thrushes in the park on dull days under hedgerows and would like more iso without noise.
I did some tests recently inside and I had to use iso 1600 with the GH3. Checking with Colormancer on the jpeg they show a little noise, a measure of 42. A measure of 15 would be no noise and what I get with the Nikon D800, but this is still acceptable. I haven't done any tests of various cameras noise handling recently but I will soon as the weather is forcast to be rubbish here for at least another week.
The photo is a reduced jpeg with no adjustments.
Neil.
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 07:09   #31
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but my main digiscoping camera is the Sony RX 100 M2 when I need AF as it's a very sharp Zeiss lens and quality is very good for a 1 inch sensor.
Neil, I use a Panasonic DMC G3 at the moment with the 30 mm f/2.8 Sigma lens. I find the AF very slow. Is the AF (much) better with the RX100-M2? You say that the RX100-M2 is your main digiscoping camera. Does it make good photographs nearby and far away? I never used a zoom lens before. Does it take extra time to take a photo using a zoom lens, compared to a fixed lens?

Jan
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 09:42   #32
Neil
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Neil, I use a Panasonic DMC G3 at the moment with the 30 mm f/2.8 Sigma lens. I find the AF very slow. Is the AF (much) better with the RX100-M2? You say that the RX100-M2 is your main digiscoping camera. Does it make good photographs nearby and far away? I never used a zoom lens before. Does it take extra time to take a photo using a zoom lens, compared to a fixed lens?

Jan
Jan,
The Sigma 30/2.8 can be a bit slow , although it seems faster on the GH3 than on the Nexes. If I want to track medium speed feeding birds eg greenshanks , move to the 20/2.8 or the Sony RX100M2. For fast feeding birds eg plovers,sanderlings I go for the Nikon P330.
The Sony RX100M2 is the best one for both close ups and distance due to it's fast Zeiss lens. I normally set it to about 50 mm into the zoom and zoom the eyepiece for more magnification. The Sigma 30/2.8 doesn't focus well at distance with haze so I switch to manual focus. I use it for slow moving subjects like egrets and herons in AF mode.
I'm a bit of a camera junkie so I normally have at least 5 cameras with me shooting video, timelapse and stills and digiscoping.
Hope this helps and doesn't confuse too much.
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 12:58   #33
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Thanks Neil

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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 18:30   #34
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Slowly piecing it all together mentally....

I see the 30mm lens is often preferred. I thought there was something special in the Sigma 30m F2.8 and after looking at Neils Flickr page on that lens I can see that it is very sharp. But, is there any reason I cannot use my Sony 35mm 1.8 ?
I do planon adding the DCB II for when I'd like to give the Nex's autofocus a go; if the SEL 35mm will do I can cancel the order for the Sigma, it's backordered in black anyway.
Thanks as always.
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Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 20:50   #35
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Originally Posted by MedicineMan4040 View Post
I see the 30mm lens is often preferred. I thought there was something special in the Sigma 30m F2.8 and after looking at Neils Flickr page on that lens I can see that it is very sharp. But, is there any reason I cannot use my Sony 35mm 1.8 ?
I do planon adding the DCB II for when I'd like to give the Nex's autofocus a go; if the SEL 35mm will do I can cancel the order for the Sigma, it's backordered in black anyway.
Thanks as always.
The Sony 35 mm should work well if it length is similar to the Sigma so that it still fits on the DCB 11. I should AF faster too.
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Old Thursday 13th March 2014, 04:08   #36
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DCB II on the way for the Nex(s).
Now a question please concering EOS bodies.
It seems that high ISO performance=higher shutter rates and this is highly desired when digiscoping, correct? So has anybody coupled a digiscope with a body like the EOS 6D which has done nothing but amaze me with high ISO performance, e.g. low low noise even when pushed super high- I realize autofocus is lost in this case. Thoughts?

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Old Saturday 15th March 2014, 20:03   #37
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First efforts digiscoping

My kit arrived. Thankfully Swarovski make everything easily plug-n-play.
Here is my first effort. I have already determined that wind is the enemy, in fact any movement at 70X is. Considering this could only have been imaged with a scope I'm very pleased:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/medicin...0/13165581465/
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Old Sunday 16th March 2014, 00:43   #38
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Originally Posted by MedicineMan4040 View Post
My kit arrived. Thankfully Swarovski make everything easily plug-n-play.
Here is my first effort. I have already determined that wind is the enemy, in fact any movement at 70X is. Considering this could only have been imaged with a scope I'm very pleased:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/medicin...0/13165581465/
Nice video clip at that distance. Wind is a problem at 70x, even a breeze.
Some things to try -
1. retract the lenshood
2. drop the tripod height
3. fix spikes to the feet
4. hand a heavy weight to the center column eg camera bag
5. set up a wind barrier ( what I do in the hides is make sure that only one window is open so there are no cross breezes.
6. make sure the camera/scope combo is perfectly balanced.

Have fun with your new toy.
Neil.
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Old Sunday 16th March 2014, 01:30   #39
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Excellent points....

Neil thanks for those tips--surely to be invaluable. In fact all the points you made Neil should be on an index card in my pocket or firmly imprinted in my brain.
The DCB II arrives Monday....now if one were to predict whether I'll get better results with it or the TLS APO ???
I can add this to any who might speak of weight and the 95mm. I carried a Sigma 120-300mm for almost 3 weeks in Alaska, getting in and out of cars, small planes, and boats. The entire kit of ATX 95mm + Manfrotto 502 + Induro tripod is not any heavier. I don't even count the weigt of the Nex.

Looking forward to my next go.
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Old Sunday 16th March 2014, 01:45   #40
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Neil thanks for those tips--surely to be invaluable. In fact all the points you made Neil should be on an index card in my pocket or firmly imprinted in my brain.
The DCB II arrives Monday....now if one were to predict whether I'll get better results with it or the TLS APO ???
I can add this to any who might speak of weight and the 95mm. I carried a Sigma 120-300mm for almost 3 weeks in Alaska, getting in and out of cars, small planes, and boats. The entire kit of ATX 95mm + Manfrotto 502 + Induro tripod is not any heavier. I don't even count the weigt of the Nex.

Looking forward to my next go.
If you've got time can you shoot some comparison shots from the DCB 11 and TLS APO on the same subject.
I'm going to try to do that tomorrow too as questions have been raised about which is best.
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 01:54   #41
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Neil, can do but it will be something rather bland like rusty old can in the back yard.
For comparision of the DCB II and TLS APO will it matter which lens I put on the Nex-6 ?
I did find a Sigma 19mm for Nex in the bin and there is always the 16-50 power zoom. I realize 'fit' on the DBG II will be the limiting reagent.
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 06:26   #42
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Interesting experiment. I just ordered a TLS APO and use a DCB-I now. The TLS APO has a 30 mm lens in it, so I think the best comparison wll be with a 30 mm lens on the Nex-6.
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 07:43   #43
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Neil, can do but it will be something rather bland like rusty old can in the back yard.
For comparision of the DCB II and TLS APO will it matter which lens I put on the Nex-6 ?
I did find a Sigma 19mm for Nex in the bin and there is always the 16-50 power zoom. I realize 'fit' on the DBG II will be the limiting reagent.
Use both. I'm interesting in seeing how the 19 mm Sigma performs.
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 11:09   #44
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Well the only 30mm I have for e-mount is the 30mm macro.....hmmmmm, but at 3.5 it's drastically slow for d'scoping I'd think at this point in my learning process.

OK. So I'll give the Nex + 35 1.8 a try and the Sigma 19mm 2.8.
But any point with the 16-50 PZ, again its slow at 3.5 max ap. ??

Forgot to add, pouring rain for the day so might be a bit....
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 18:50   #45
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Sigma 30mm 2.8 for MFT seen here before

There is an older tread on the sigma 30mm 2.8 lens for MFT:
http://www.birdforum.net/showthread....ma+30mm&page=2.
it would be good to know whether the newer version performs even better than its predecessor already did.

When circumstances allow it is still a very capable lens. Less contrasty than the pany 20mm, but a much faster and more reliable AF. Also, I can leave the eye cup on the eyepiece of the scope, which is very convenient in switching form birding to photography.

Regards,
Sjerp
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Old Monday 17th March 2014, 20:57   #46
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I feel like d'scoping with the DCB II is more like what I thought d'scoping would be like versus useing the TLS APO. Being able to half-press the shutter and focus is nice but I have to pre-focus with the Swaro Optik anyway so I wonder if there is truly an advantage there over manual focusing with the TLS APO.
BUT at first I thought I had failure. Neither the Sigma 19mm or the Sony 35mm would fit :(
Then I discovered that when sliding the DCB II onto the scope NOT to go all the way, that the DCB II would still clamp down enough (I tested by trying to pull the rig off and could not).....Of course I'd feel safer if it would go all the way down before clamping---anyone else experience this?
I only shot for a few minutes with the Nex-6 + SEL 35 1.8, I like the results and am learning step by step.
Evidently the size difference between the Sigma 30mm and the Sony 35mm is just enough to matter:
sigma . 2.39 x 1.59"
sony Approx. 2.55 x 1.77"
At the very end I saw the light, now the DCB II fits just fine....great what a pair of reading glasses can do :)
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Old Wednesday 19th March 2014, 02:23   #47
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Originally Posted by MedicineMan4040 View Post
I feel like d'scoping with the DCB II is more like what I thought d'scoping would be like versus useing the TLS APO. Being able to half-press the shutter and focus is nice but I have to pre-focus with the Swaro Optik anyway so I wonder if there is truly an advantage there over manual focusing with the TLS APO.
BUT at first I thought I had failure. Neither the Sigma 19mm or the Sony 35mm would fit :(
Then I discovered that when sliding the DCB II onto the scope NOT to go all the way, that the DCB II would still clamp down enough (I tested by trying to pull the rig off and could not).....Of course I'd feel safer if it would go all the way down before clamping---anyone else experience this?
I only shot for a few minutes with the Nex-6 + SEL 35 1.8, I like the results and am learning step by step.
Evidently the size difference between the Sigma 30mm and the Sony 35mm is just enough to matter:
sigma . 2.39 x 1.59"
sony Approx. 2.55 x 1.77"
At the very end I saw the light, now the DCB II fits just fine....great what a pair of reading glasses can do :)
That's the way I use it. I push it on then pull it back a bit so it extends out two mms. This also helps to block side light from hitting the lens.
The Sigma is a very snug fit.
Neil.

Last edited by Neil : Wednesday 19th March 2014 at 07:38.
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Old Wednesday 19th March 2014, 04:05   #48
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^agreed and confirmed today the Sigma is tight....glad I tried it though. I could tell a demonstrable difference between it and the SEL 35 1.8 in speed/iq, well the whole nine yards.
I also played with the Nex-7 today as well and I remembered Neil saying the write speed was/could be an issue due to its 30% larger sensor. That wasn't an issue for me today (but could be in the future) because the intended targets were never in one spot long enough even to get the 10fps off!
Less than a month and we can experiment with the fast autofocus Sony ever!

Now something else please.
On the Swaro 95mm the images I can get at 25X are stellar and up there with my best Canon glass BUT beyond 50x and it's turning up rather blah. I assume this is normal and the tips Neil pointed out in an above post can help but in all honestly beyond 50x even with the best techniques and weather can I ever expect anything dazzling sharp?
Not that I'm complaining-at all. Already the 95mm has shown me huge potential, and that well its really up to me and the effort I'll put into it.
Thanks.
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Old Wednesday 19th March 2014, 04:14   #49
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Just to show I'm still trying :)

http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2824/1...68a68c4cff.jpg
Digiscoping a Pair by MedicineMan4040, on Flickr
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Old Wednesday 19th March 2014, 07:35   #50
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^agreed and confirmed today the Sigma is tight....glad I tried it though. I could tell a demonstrable difference between it and the SEL 35 1.8 in speed/iq, well the whole nine yards.
I also played with the Nex-7 today as well and I remembered Neil saying the write speed was/could be an issue due to its 30% larger sensor. That wasn't an issue for me today (but could be in the future) because the intended targets were never in one spot long enough even to get the 10fps off!
Less than a month and we can experiment with the fast autofocus Sony ever!

Now something else please.
On the Swaro 95mm the images I can get at 25X are stellar and up there with my best Canon glass BUT beyond 50x and it's turning up rather blah. I assume this is normal and the tips Neil pointed out in an above post can help but in all honestly beyond 50x even with the best techniques and weather can I ever expect anything dazzling sharp?
Not that I'm complaining-at all. Already the 95mm has shown me huge potential, and that well its really up to me and the effort I'll put into it.
Thanks.
I suspect that there is an inverse rule about increasing magnfication and dropping resolution. I find that you get sharper shots by manually focusing. Over 50x I mostly use it for video. Also you are magnifying any pollution/haze/humidity between you and the subject.
Neil.
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