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Nikon P300 for Digiscoping (1 Viewer)

Neil

Well-known member
As it's my lot in life to have to buy every decent camera that Nikon makes ( and some that aren't so decent eg P5000 ) I picked up the P300 yesterday and did some quick testing in my apartment to check vignetting.
With the Swarovski 30x eyepiece ( 20 mm of ER ) vignetting disappeared at 40 mm which was nice as I prefer to keep the camera below half zoom.
With the Swarovski 25 - 50 zoom at 20x vignetting disappeared at 50 mm and at 60x at 35 mm.
With the Kowa 25x at 62 mm and with the 20 - 60 zoom at 20x vignetting disappeared at 62 mm and at 60x at 45 mm.
With a fast frame rate of 7fps (due to CMOS sensor ) and HD video this camera has potential. No Raw though unfortunately.
The first image shows vignetting with the Swarovski 30x eyepiece (20 mm ER ) and the second shows full zoom with the Canon SD4000IS (Ixus 300) and Nikon P300.
Neil

ps the testing was done with a universal adapter to minimise lens/eyepiece distance ( Swarovski UCA )

Hong Kong,
China.
March 2011
 

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Neil

Well-known member
Out in the field yesterday shooting with the Canon 4000 IS (Ixus 300) , Nikon P6000 and the new Nikon P300.
Here is one from the P300.
Neil

Nikon P300 and Kowa lens/scope Prominar with Kowa 20-60zoom (60x) and Swarovski UCA adapter

Hong Kong,
China.
March 2011
 

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Wachtel

Well-known member
Very nice photo, Neil. The P300 seems like a good compact for occasional digiscoping. I need a small p&s and had my sights on the S95. Maybe this would suit me better.
 

Neil

Well-known member
The P300 is nice to use on the scope with it's bright/sharp screen ( Nikon do screens better than most ) and it's fast frame rate. It's lens is not on a par with the P6000 and P7000 though so don't expect better quality than those two but you'll get more keepers as it's so fast.
It goes in the pocket nicely too.
I'll post some other photos in the Nikon Forum.
http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?p=2101504#post2101504
Neil

Nikon P300 and Kowa lens/scope Prominar and Kowa 20-60x zoom eyepiece and Swarovski UCA adapter.

Hong Kong,
China.
Mar 2011
 

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Neil

Well-known member
Very nice photo, Neil. The P300 seems like a good compact for occasional digiscoping. I need a small p&s and had my sights on the S95. Maybe this would suit me better.

Pro's and Con's between these two. The P300 is much faster and has much better screen, but the S95 has Raw and Continuos Jpeg shooting which I would like.
Neil
 

Hor Kee

Penang birder
Does the Coolpix P300 have a preset zoom upon start-up like the S95 is capable of? What is the diameter of the threads surrounding the lens? Is it the same as the P6000?
 

Neil

Well-known member
The P300 came into it's own out on the mudflats yesterday as its 7 fps did a great job of keeping up with waders feeding ahead of the rising tide. The P7000 and P6000 did poorly in handling the fast action.
Neil

Nikon P300 and Kowa lens/scope Prominar and Kowa 20-60zoom (60x) eyepiece and Swarovski UCA adapter

Mai Po Nature Reserve,
Hong Kong,
China.
April 2011
 

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moorerp

Shameless sponge of others' hard won knowledge
p300 with leica tv 77

Looks like the P300 works with Leica Televid 77 APO, 32mm WW fixed eyepiece. Took this in 5 minutes of playing around at the office feeders after having the camera for about 20 minutes without really understanding what I was doing. Kind of idiot proof, it seems.

cheers,
randall
 

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Sc0tty

Well-known member
United Kingdom
Looks like the P300 works with Leica Televid 77 APO, 32mm WW fixed eyepiece. Took this in 5 minutes of playing around at the office feeders after having the camera for about 20 minutes without really understanding what I was doing. Kind of idiot proof, it seems.

cheers,
randall

Hi Randall, what kind of adapter did you use?

Thanks.
 

Neil

Well-known member
Looks like the P300 works with Leica Televid 77 APO, 32mm WW fixed eyepiece. Took this in 5 minutes of playing around at the office feeders after having the camera for about 20 minutes without really understanding what I was doing. Kind of idiot proof, it seems.

cheers,
randall

Nice Randall. Now image how good they'll be after an hour of practice.
Neil

ps like your a.k.a.s
 

moorerp

Shameless sponge of others' hard won knowledge
OK, seems I spoke too soon- my images are getting worse with practice instead of better. A bit of beginner's luck perhaps- or getting my comeuppance for being cocky.

Neil, did you do any post-processing with those nice sharp wader images you shot with your p300?
 

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horukuru

Here I Come !
Malaysia
OK, seems I spoke too soon- my images are getting worse with practice instead of better. A bit of beginner's luck perhaps- or getting my comeuppance for being cocky.

Neil, did you do any post-processing with those nice sharp wader images you shot with your p300?

Randall,

Your images looked fine :king:
 

Neil

Well-known member
OK, seems I spoke too soon- my images are getting worse with practice instead of better. A bit of beginner's luck perhaps- or getting my comeuppance for being cocky.

Neil, did you do any post-processing with those nice sharp wader images you shot with your p300?

Randall,
I do post processing in CS5 on all my photos although the waders shots didn't need much as the light was good here for a change.
Neil
 

Neil

Well-known member
OK, seems I spoke too soon- my images are getting worse with practice instead of better. A bit of beginner's luck perhaps- or getting my comeuppance for being cocky.

Neil, did you do any post-processing with those nice sharp wader images you shot with your p300?

These photos look ok for just starting out so don't start worrying yet. A lot depends on the quality of light , the distance and the movement of the subject.
Neil
 

ianreid

Well-known member
Hi All,

a couple of weeks ago I bought a P300 for use with my Swarovski AT80HD that I use with the new-style 20-60 zoom. My existing digiscoping camera is a Fuji f31fd that I have had for nearly 4 years.

I made an adaptor from plastic and rubber in order to test it the P300, which worked pretty well for my tests. Here are some observations from a couple of days' usage:

Pros:

1. Large bright screen is great and a huge improvement on my fuji

2. 1080p video is great

Cons:

1. Vignetting was apparent until the camera was almost fully zoomed in.

2. The camera will only go to ISO160. I like to shoot at low iso with low shutter speeds on a stable platform, so min ISO of 160 was a disappointment.

3. Disappointingly the burst mode cannot be used with self-timer. If you want multiple shots you either need a device to hold a cable release, or put up with vibrations from your fingers. For me this negates a potential advantage of the camera.

4. To get self-timer you have to use the toggle a few buttons to get 2s. I found this a bit fiddly, but maybe it would just be a case of getting used to it.

5. Focus does not seem as rapid or reliable as I would have expected. I used macro mode to help as others have suggested (and it did help) but this was never required for my old Fuji.

6. Picture quality good, but the images were not as clean as I had hoped / expected.

In the end I decided to return the camera because although I loved the 1080p video the other aspects of it did not fulfil my expectations for £250.

Cheers, Ian
 

Neil

Well-known member
Hi All,

a couple of weeks ago I bought a P300 for use with my Swarovski AT80HD that I use with the new-style 20-60 zoom. My existing digiscoping camera is a Fuji f31fd that I have had for nearly 4 years.

I made an adaptor from plastic and rubber in order to test it the P300, which worked pretty well for my tests. Here are some observations from a couple of days' usage:

Pros:

1. Large bright screen is great and a huge improvement on my fuji

2. 1080p video is great

Cons:

1. Vignetting was apparent until the camera was almost fully zoomed in.

2. The camera will only go to ISO160. I like to shoot at low iso with low shutter speeds on a stable platform, so min ISO of 160 was a disappointment.

3. Disappointingly the burst mode cannot be used with self-timer. If you want multiple shots you either need a device to hold a cable release, or put up with vibrations from your fingers. For me this negates a potential advantage of the camera.

4. To get self-timer you have to use the toggle a few buttons to get 2s. I found this a bit fiddly, but maybe it would just be a case of getting used to it.

5. Focus does not seem as rapid or reliable as I would have expected. I used macro mode to help as others have suggested (and it did help) but this was never required for my old Fuji.

6. Picture quality good, but the images were not as clean as I had hoped / expected.

In the end I decided to return the camera because although I loved the 1080p video the other aspects of it did not fulfil my expectations for £250.

Cheers, Ian

Ian,
Sorry you were disappointed with the P300.
I was surprised to hear that you had to use the camera at full zoom to eliminate vignetting. This would be the main reason that images would appear to be "not as clean as I had hoped ". The lens is not Nikon ED glass so suffers over about half zoom. The camera is certainly not as "eyepiece friendly" as the F31 which was one of the best ever for minimizing vignetting.
I don't have a Swarovski 20-60 zoom on hand but I just ran the camera on the Kowa 20-60x zoom using the Swarovski UCA. The best case is about 50 % zoom at 60x which drops back to 80% zoom at 20x. I would suspect the Swarovski would be similar if not slightly better. I use the zoom mostly at 60x as I want lot's of magnification with digicams.
There are lot's of good cameras out there these days and most can be "made" to digiscope so I will be interested to hear what you find.
The Nikon P6000 will give better results than the P300 but is much slower and doesn't have Continuous Self-timer either. No Nikons do unfortunately but Canon's do.
Neil.
ps could you post the best you got with the camera.
 
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