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Opticron MM3 + Iphone 5S

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Old Monday 21st July 2014, 13:51   #1
FrankD
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Opticron MM3 + Iphone 5S

I recently upgraded to the Iphone 5S from an Iphone 4 and just started digiscoping with it on my Opticron MM3 spotting scope. I have been using the fixed 18x eyepiece for all of my attempts as the wider field of view really helps reduce vignetting.

Most of my efforts have been directed towards using the Iphone's slow motion camera feature but I did take some regular pictures with it last evening. The best of the bunch is below. Keep in mind that it was low light conditions when the photo was taken. Distance was about 20 yards. I did not use the Iphone's zoom feature but rather just slightly cropped the picture afterwards.

You can check out some of the slow motion video on my Flickr page.....

https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/14690722954/

I have been really impressed with what this spotting scope/phone combination is capable of.
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Old Thursday 31st July 2014, 12:17   #2
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Some Snow Geese yesterday at a neighboring pond.
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Old Tuesday 5th August 2014, 03:48   #3
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Favorite pic of the day with the above setup....
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Old Wednesday 6th August 2014, 02:46   #4
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Nice!
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Old Wednesday 6th August 2014, 23:38   #5
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Thank you DW.

Pic of the day with the above mention setup? Couldn't decide between a Green Heron and an immature male House Finch.
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Old Wednesday 6th August 2014, 23:39   #6
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........
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Old Friday 8th August 2014, 17:31   #7
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Nice, and the adaptors are usually so simple for iPhones.
The cameras with really small objectives seem to do well.
Maybe it's their similarity to the eye (dimensionally)?
The waterproof and pocket digicams have a similar size front.
Maybe that would be a good choice.
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Old Sunday 10th August 2014, 03:54   #8
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Here is an interesting addition to digiscoping use with MM3/IPhone 5s setup....
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Old Tuesday 12th August 2014, 00:54   #9
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Great Egret. Pic taken this morning at a local lake with the previously mentioned digiscoping combination.
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Old Tuesday 12th August 2014, 04:13   #10
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Very nice...
there is a bit of white bloom, which happens on most cameras.
If you can reduce the exposure, it's easier to recover too-dark than too-light (which is lost).
The post-processing would involve reducing contrast a little, bringing up the light, and adding a little saturation
(after a dim exposure). I think I'm going to get a pocket waterproof-cam, for the little lens.
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Old Tuesday 12th August 2014, 12:42   #11
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Thanks ON for the suggestions. Yes, white birds can be a bit tricky to photograph accurately. Now how about this Green Heron?
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Old Sunday 31st August 2014, 04:23   #12
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The blue heron pic is fuzzy and low-contrast.
On a close-up it looks like a mis-cue on the focus. Or maybe I'm only looking at the thumbnail when it gets
read into the viewer. Something's awry, anyway. If you do have a picture that is sharper behind this,
the remaining issue would be some kind of general glare wash-out, maybe from the sticks. Turning the
overall brightness down would improve contrast and color at the same time in that case. If you don't
have a fancy processing package, Irfanview (a freebie) can do various digital dark-room things and
you can fiddle with the remedies. I end up using it on everything.
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Old Sunday 31st August 2014, 11:42   #13
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Thanks for the tips ON. I will take a look at that program. Everything is auto with mynphone's camera so post-processing is my only option.
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Old Sunday 31st August 2014, 12:03   #14
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Once you have a real .jpg file, everything is possible, at least from a PC. You escape the 'taking' package.
If the same path took that shot and the other nice saturated shots, the local sensor and software could
have been baffled. I have seen the spotter 'flashed' with light, though. It might help to tape an extra hood
on. I use flat black spray paint on bond paper to make slide-hood material. a few inches past the telescope
can help a lot, just taped on.

You can still experiment, even in Apple world. ;-)
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Old Tuesday 23rd September 2014, 13:05   #15
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My latest digiscoping attempt with the MM3 50/18x HDF eyepiece and my Iphone 5S. Still tough to get the exposure right with the white plumage but otherwise I was pretty happy with how it turned out. The pic was taken at sunrise but it was heavily overcast with a bit of fog around the lake. Distance to bird was about 40 yards (meters). Downsized to fit into the forum limits.
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Last edited by FrankD : Tuesday 23rd September 2014 at 13:10.
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Old Wednesday 24th September 2014, 13:34   #16
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There is some white range blow-out, but that's hard to get rid of, short of extended-range cameras
like SLRs or the Fuji EXRs. I'd say the color is odd, but I'll bet that's really what it was...very eery.
Some of it's a little pixelish, but parts are quite sharp. There is a lot of noise coming into your barrel
from the adjacent fog, directly in the image. The fog itself affects resolution.
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Old Wednesday 24th September 2014, 15:27   #17
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Nice summary ON. I think you pretty much nailed it. Some of the issues I can address while others are out of my hands. I will continue to work on it. Lot of fun doing it though.
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Old Friday 26th September 2014, 17:00   #18
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I've removed some noise like that in post-processing, but fog is worse then optical haze,
because it has some 'features', a texture to it.
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Old Sunday 28th September 2014, 04:04   #19
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Taken this morning via the usual setup. New HD video can be found at:

http://youtu.be/j4BYpTLb5pQ

http://youtu.be/_uG8B3KWn8E

http://youtu.be/6TRlSOeQLyE
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Old Sunday 28th September 2014, 14:54   #20
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Was the video at 50mm? Very nice...really like the mist blowing while the heron moves.
The saturation comes in low...not sure how that happens in the processing chain.
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Old Monday 29th September 2014, 03:03   #21
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How about this one from this morning ON? Video at ....

http://youtu.be/Js2O7yZE0B8
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Old Wednesday 1st October 2014, 17:52   #22
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As I continue to refine my skills I think some of the pics are getting better. Part of it is the new adjustability options via IOS 8 and the IPhone 5S. I can now adjust exposure prior to the shot.


HD video of the Cormorant can be found at:


http://youtu.be/Z-Z7lDIeziY


Be sure to adjust the resolution to "HD" in the bottom right hand corner before viewing.
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Old Friday 3rd October 2014, 14:07   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankD View Post
How about this one from this morning ON? Video at ....

http://youtu.be/Js2O7yZE0B8
Nice. The resolution's a bit low, but the saturation and color are
nice and rich. Somehow the software made the trade, pixels for contrast.
I'm watching a blue heron these days. Most folks
wouldn't realize your video is pretty "active" for them. That one
appears accustomed to you.
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Old Friday 3rd October 2014, 14:17   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankD View Post
As I continue to refine my skills I think some of the pics are getting better. Part of it is the new adjustability options via IOS 8 and the IPhone 5S. I can now adjust exposure prior to the shot.


HD video of the Cormorant can be found at:


http://youtu.be/Z-Z7lDIeziY


Be sure to adjust the resolution to "HD" in the bottom right hand corner before viewing.
That's looking good. Interesting: the video has better contrast than the
still picture. Not sure how that happens. It might even be my eye
integrating the light.

Between this and my own looking (with a 70mm/f-10 Astro!) I've come to
realize that distances and powers can be fairly low once the critters get
used to you, and thus the atmosphere is usually no trouble.
I've had to back off to 30x to fit the heron in, and that's at 250 ft.
Need to get on with an adaptor.
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Old Monday 13th October 2014, 01:16   #25
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One of my favorite pics so far at.... Great Egret, Local lake yesterday....
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