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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

83x anyone? The new Nikon P900 (1 Viewer)

crazyfingers

Well-known member
Well, can you think of one thing that the P900 actually does better than an SX50? I can't think of one thing and I used two P900's for about a month trying very much to like the camera but could not because the SX50 did everything better.
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
I've read this whole thread and have enjoyed the great discussion about the Nikon p900 and it's abilities, as well as it's limitations. I believe it suits my needs perfectly. I am not a photographer but a birder who wants to take decent photos to illustrate my birding and for record shots whenever they are needed. I would also like to take videos, from what I have seen the P900 does a great job at that. I don't have a camera useful for birding at all.

I have been using my iPhone and Opticron MM3 60ED (owned for 6 months) for long distance record shots and long range IDs of shorebirds and such. The maximum magnification of my scope is 46x I believe. Obviously digiscoping with a setup like that is inconvenient and not at all useful for anything but the most lethargic songbirds. Also a camera (even on a monopod as I would like) is much easier to carry around than a scope on a tripod.

Now, ideally I would like to have both a Superzoom camera and the scope but at this point I can only afford one. I am perfectly willing to sell the scope to fund the purchase of the P900. I'm just racking my brain on whether or not the camera will be able to do what my scope can do, so that I'm not wishing I had a scope in some circumstances.


Seems like a pretty straight forward decision but I'd like to hear what others think.

Hi KOTW. My advice would be to save (if you're able to)until you can get both (with 2 young children I had to do the same). I have a Superzoom (not Nikon)and a scope. You can't compare the image through the scope with the camera.

Don't get me wrong, my Superzoom is always with me but they are different tools. I love how light they and versatile they are. Maybe if my goal was just to identify the birds then a Superzoom would suffice. For actually watching the birds and their behaviours I find the scope indispensable - certainly over distances - estuaries etc. When birding in the forest though I always have my bins and the Superzoom. Again, for actually watching the birds my bins are first choice every time.

Good luck with your choice.

Rich
 

peter.jones

Former supporter. No longer active here.
Supporter
I have never owned an sx50. It was discontinued when I was in the market for a smaller camera. I was looking for new as opposed to used or refurbished. Also, the poor reviews of the EVF put me off if I'm honest.

The other thing that put me off the SX50 at the time, was the number of sx50 owners on forums appearing desperate for a newer, better camera to come out. Even now, there is a groundswell praying for an SX70 with a 100x zoom.

This is the only place on birdforum for p900 users to get advice, share tips etc. Maybe a pissing contest with another camera should have it's own thread? Or just read comparison reviews, there must be plenty of them out there.

But I have said before on here.. concentrate on your skills both behind the lens and in post-processing, as opposed to worrying about the camera. There is a LOT more improvement to be made there, rather than arguing about which camera is best. A LOT more.
 

HermitIbis

Well-known member
... when a Selasphorus hummingbird showed up a couple days ago I was happy to have 2000 mm available.
Great photograph of a beautiful hummingbird! Chris B.'s Cooper's Hawk is also impressive. There are many attractive bird photos from the P900 around.

It seems that the rumour of a Coolpix P4000 is just a fairy tale. The skeptical post by "nico6" in http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3884194 sounds convincing enough. As a non-techie I have to rely on the "web experts".
 

mzettie

Well-known member
Great photograph of a beautiful hummingbird! Chris B.'s Cooper's Hawk is also impressive. There are many attractive bird photos from the P900 around.

It seems that the rumour of a Coolpix P4000 is just a fairy tale. The skeptical post by "nico6" in http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3884194 sounds convincing enough. As a non-techie I have to rely on the "web experts".

Thank you, HermitIbis. It could be sharper, Chris' hawk is much better. I had ISO limited to 400, so that forced a shutter speed of 1/100, which is pretty slow for 1800mm handheld.

One advantage to the telephoto settings on the SX50 is that metering is based on the shorter focal length, so you can get away with faster shutter speeds than the P900 is capable of in not-so-great light....kind of evens the score between the two cameras, at times. When light is good though, the P900 easily out-resolves the SX50.

I'm definitely not holding my breath for any more ultra-zooming cameras, too many compromises to be made for a little more reach. Think I'm gonna sit tight and wait for the next crop of 1 inch sensor cams so I can have my cake and eat it too... |:D|
 

Kingofthewho

Active member
Hi KOTW. My advice would be to save (if you're able to)until you can get both (with 2 young children I had to do the same). I have a Superzoom (not Nikon)and a scope. You can't compare the image through the scope with the camera.

Don't get me wrong, my Superzoom is always with me but they are different tools. I love how light they and versatile they are. Maybe if my goal was just to identify the birds then a Superzoom would suffice. For actually watching the birds and their behaviours I find the scope indispensable - certainly over distances - estuaries etc. When birding in the forest though I always have my bins and the Superzoom. Again, for actually watching the birds my bins are first choice every time.

Good luck with your choice.

Rich

I've sort of had the decision made for me. Last week I got the last spot in a raptor watch in southern Belize (Nov-Dec) and they want me to bring my scope. So I'm gonna try and scrape together for the camera. Now I have a desperate need for it, to capture all those unfamiliar Belize birds!
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
I've sort of had the decision made for me. Last week I got the last spot in a raptor watch in southern Belize (Nov-Dec) and they want me to bring my scope. So I'm gonna try and scrape together for the camera. Now I have a desperate need for it, to capture all those unfamiliar Belize birds!
Sounds like a great trip. Looking forward to seeing your pics. I don't think you'll regret having both.

Rich
 

Neil

Well-known member
On my recent trip to New York is used the P900 as my main nature camera. Had a distant encounter with a Black Vulture in New Jersey at 1600 mm.
Neil.
 

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mzettie

Well-known member
Is their a trick or setting to know how many mm you are at for shots?

Only thing I know to do is use "zoom memory." You access it via the menu, then select the focal lengths you want the camera to stop at automatically as you zoom. Each time the lens stops the mm is displayed, so you can watch the bar at the top and sort of learn where you want it to be for different focal lengths.
 

jascha777

Well-known member
Hi Neil, just to clarify, is the crop of the Vulture from the long distance shot the same photo or did you move much closer?, cant believe no one has commented!!! Utterly amazing!!!!! Mark
 
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peter.jones

Former supporter. No longer active here.
Supporter
Hi Neil, just to clarify, is the crop of the Vulture from the long distance shot the same photo or did you move much closer?, cant believe no one has commented!!! Utterly amazing!!!!! Mark

I suspect it is a shot at high zoom, and one at wide angle.. Here is a video clip zooming from wide to 2000mm, pause, then on to 4000mm in the digital zoom..

https://youtu.be/0zeXi1E48T0

Best viewed at 720p

Note the wide angle is much smaller than reality. I would guess "life-size" was about 7 seconds in.
 

moonbooter

New member
In Response to Crazyfingers

Well, can you think of one thing that the P900 actually does better than an SX50? I can't think of one thing and I used two P900's for about a month trying very much to like the camera but could not because the SX50 did everything better.
I compared all your photos of the two cameras (Nikon and Canon) and yes, with your setup the Canon was superior. But....can you be sure that you had the Nikon optimally set up? From my readings on this thread the white balance could be off on the Nikon which could be easily rectified with a new software update.
Right now the video on the Nikon is superior, and that IS a big deal. I just purchased the Nikon and took it out yesterday afternoon for the first time. Here is one of the first shots I captured down here in South Florida a few minutes from my home:
 

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Kingofthewho

Active member
I am still planning on getting the P900. However I have one question about the behavior of the camera.

I am currently using a P600 that I borrowed from a friend. It is a valuable tool and allows for some good photos. However I find it difficult to get my subject directly in the middle of the frame even half of the time. This is because of the slight delay between pressing the capture button and moment of capture and the screen going blank in that split second. Inevitably I can't keep the camera pointed exactly still during that split second. This is really annoying as I end up with many photos with the bird somewhere between the center and the edge of the frame. Please tell me this doesn't happen with the P900. It's absolutely bonkers.
 
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poledark

Well-known member
Can't help you with the P600, but my P900 holds steady as a rock with VR on "active" Are you snatching at the shot? I squeeze the shutter while framing the bird and then squeeze a bit more to take the shot.

I tested the 900 VR a while ago, and with the camera zoomed in and focussed on a thin pole at 15 mtrs and VR off the image was quite unsteady. I then switched to VR normal and it was a lot steadier. Finally set VR to active and the image was dead still, quite impressive I thought :)

Den
 

Kingofthewho

Active member
Can't help you with the P600, but my P900 holds steady as a rock with VR on "active" Are you snatching at the shot? I squeeze the shutter while framing the bird and then squeeze a bit more to take the shot.

I tested the 900 VR a while ago, and with the camera zoomed in and focussed on a thin pole at 15 mtrs and VR off the image was quite unsteady. I then switched to VR normal and it was a lot steadier. Finally set VR to active and the image was dead still, quite impressive I thought :)

Den


Ok I will try that. It has been set to 'normal'. Does the display go black when you take a photo?
 

poledark

Well-known member
Yes it does, but so does it happen with my 3 other cameras :) Can't say it has ever bothered me though, and to be honest, I don't think I have ever really noticed it until you asked :) It is "black" for only a tiny fraction of a second with a single shot, only about as long as it takes for the shutter button to return, so cannot see that it would cause anyone a problem.

Anyone else care to comment on this ?

I got my first Goldcrest shot today, dull, overcast, strong wind, and I was hiding among the woods and watching them flit about the branches with no chance of a pic. I was zoomed out to about 1500mm and prefocussed on a branch about 10mtrs away, and suddenly a GC landed on a branch just behind my shoulder about 3 feet away and so I swung around, zooming back as I turned, saw the GC in the evf and clicked.......... for an "all action2 shot I was well pleased :)


Den
 

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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
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