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Canon Powershot SX70 HS review (2 Viewers)

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
SX70 Digital vs Optical Zoom Test

In my previous reviews I had noted I never used the digital zoom with my SX60. Today I found another cooperative Snowy Owl and tried turning of digital zoom. I was very impressed in sunny / very bright cloud conditions, and not so impressed when the clouds were thick (lower light)

My photos / test may be found upon my blog ...

https://www.365daysofbirds.com/2019/01/21/sax-zim-bog-sunrise-owls-snowy-and-gray/
 

HermitIbis

Well-known member
In my previous reviews I had noted I never used the digital zoom with my SX60. Today I found another cooperative Snowy Owl and tried turning of digital zoom. I was very impressed in sunny / very bright cloud conditions, and not so impressed when the clouds were thick (lower light)

My photos / test may be found upon my blog ...

https://www.365daysofbirds.com/2019/01/21/sax-zim-bog-sunrise-owls-snowy-and-gray/

Thanks for the link to your blog. I particularly liked your piece "The Well Dressed Birder at -13F (-25C)". ;)
 

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
SX70 Auto Focus Issue in Highly Reflective Light Situation

I am the user who has been posting periodic reviews of the new Canon SX70 of photographs taken of birds in the Boreal forest. Up until this point, I have been very pleased with my new camera, particularly how it now performs in low light compared to the SX60 it replaced.

However, two days ago I discovered an auto focusing issue which appears to happen in very bright light situations. In my case, while photographing a Snowy Owl, even though I had good light (extremely light clouds with reflective light off newly fallen snow). I was using Aperture Priority with the sun pretty much behind me. My ISO was set at 100, and the camera picked a 1/1500 shutter speed. I noticed that I was having difficulty getting a focus lock. At first I thought the issue was white on white (Snowy Owl on fresh snow). I did manage to get some good photos, but also a lot of garbage shots.

Later in the afternoon I visited a Bobcat den I have been watching. Once again I started to have focus lock issues (aperture priority once again). The combination of new snow, and a reflective shed wall was fooling my camera. This time I wondered if that was the case, switched to full manual ... halved the shutter speed and kept the ISO at 100 and the aperture as low as possible. Immediately my auto focus problem was solved.

I now suspect that in any highly reflective high light situation I will need to make certain I am in full manual mode ... no big deal for me, but for the more casual user it could ruin a lot of images (i.e. they will rarely use, if ever, manual mode). I expect in the summer while out on any of Minnesota's 15,000 lakes the problem will reoccur. One again, for me it will be a non issue as I am now prepared.

If you want to see my Snowy Owl and Bobcat photographs, follow this link:
https://www.365daysofbirds.com/2019/01/24/rabbits-beware-snowy-and-fluffy-are-looking-for-you/

If you want to see all my SX70 reviews, follow this link:
https://www.365daysofbirds.com/2018/12/19/canon-sx70-review-snowy-owls-spruce-grouse/
 

Owen Krout

Registered User
Supporter
Richard, Given where you are birding and that the auto focus problems just started, is it possible that the extreme cold temperatures are affecting the camera? Just a thought as you are way below the Canon specified operating range. Occasionally, I start seeing issues with my 7D when the battery gets too cold. I have been out birding at -20C here but usually call it quits at about -15C.
 

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
Temperature Issues

Richard, Given where you are birding and that the auto focus problems just started, is it possible that the extreme cold temperatures are affecting the camera? Just a thought as you are way below the Canon specified operating range. Occasionally, I start seeing issues with my 7D when the battery gets too cold. I have been out birding at -20C here but usually call it quits at about -15C.

Actually Imdoubt that -15C (5F) are causing any issues. This temperature is so common in the winter where I live, that I don't really even consider it cold. For the past 4 years I used my SX60 on every birding outing innthe winter and it was extremely unusual when the mornind does not start out this cold. I have had my SX70 since early December. We are now experiencing sever cold with a great fresh snow cover. Crisp, cold days of this nature meas almost zero moisture in the air ... in other words the amazing clear blue skies. This light reflects off the snow and creates huge reflections.

While Canon says the operating range is down to 32F, I've never had any issues when it is much, much colder. As noted, making the adjustments solved the problem.
 

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
SX70 Continuous Mode and Video

I am the person who has occasionally been posting reviews of the SX70 I purchased. This morning I had the opportunity to photograph two different osprey nests in northern Minnesota in "almost perfect photography conditions". Folks may be interested to view some videos I took, and my discussion of using JPG vs RAW mode ... and the post processing edits I made. Here is the link to my blog: (images & videos taken at full zoom using a monopod)

The Osprey Challenge
 

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
A number of folks have asked why I don't use RAW when taking photos with my SX70 (I am the person who has posted the reviews on my blog). While I recognize the value of RAW, I feel that the jpg algorithms are now so good combined with the fact that turning on RAW slows down by a factor or 2 the continuous mode, I always turn RAW off.

Yesterday I was up in Sax-Zim Bog, and photographed some recently fledged Barn Swallows. If I had had RAW enabled instead of obtaining my sequence of 15 images, my yield would have been only 7 or 8 photos. The entire set of pictures only took 1.5 seconds. I really liked having the greater number of images from which to choose. Browse to my blog and check out the entire set of pictures. A lot happens in 1.5 seconds. Who knows which photographs would have been missed.

365DaysOfBirds (my blog)
 

John In Ireland

Well-known member
Ireland
Is it me??? .... I can't see anything wrong with these images. In fact I think they are quite good from a bridge camera. I expect this sort of quality from a bridge and cannot really say that my SX50 is any better on the quality front. I am seriously looking at a SX70 after this. Plus the videos look eye popping.
 

RichardHoeg

Boreal Forest Birder
Canon Sx70 Digital Zoom at Max

I am the person / birder who posted reviews of the Sx70. While not strictly a test, two days ago I took some photographs with digital zoom turned of for some very distant Snowy Owls (three of them!). While conditions were not ideal as I had to photograph obliquely i to the sun, the camera performed well. I used either a monopod or tripod for all the photographs and video.

https://www.365daysofbirds.com/2019/11/25/snowy-owl-trifecta/
 

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