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Forum Home > Digiscoping Equipment > Help with Nikon S5100 CoolPix settings

Posts: 9

Hi everyone,

I've just bought a Nikon digiscoping kit that includes a Nikon S5100 CoolPix camera. Now I've read a lot about Digiscoping and I know that a camera with a manual aperture is the best option but alas, my camera does not have it. That said, many people say it's a good camera for the job. Well I went out yesterday for a couple of hours and managed 1 pic (public park with loads of people) so few chances to focus. The quality is poor so I'm not happy. In the paperwork there are no suggestions for the best set up. Hense I'm messing around in the dqark so to speak. Could someone check the camera optional settings and please give me some advice please? I never place links unless I know it's a safe site OK! This is Nikon's home site and very safe. Therefore, this is the link to a manual for my camera


Danny dear boy I'll send you some pics and you may do as you wish with them.

As always, Many, many thanks.


June 6, 2011 at 9:32 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Dannys Digiscoping
Site Owner
Posts: 372

Hi Les,

I see your issue, but its not the end of the world!!

OK, Firstly you must understand that when you are learning to digiscope it does take a lot of practise. Chances are you will take lots of pictures to start, only to throw most of them away, but relax, this is normal!!

The set up you have has been designed to work together, so I suggest some patience and not despair! It'll come good for you in the end.

Seeing that there is no manual mode etc, you will need to use your camera on sunny, not too windy days whenever possible. If however its is a more overcast day, you will need to use the ISO settings to your advantage, and also the exposure compensation. Both these features will help you achieve higher shutter speeds when its not sunny.

Its also important to remember that the photographer still has to think about the conditions. No matter how expensive your equipment it will not produce stunning shots if it is too dark, or the subject is moving too fast,  always making sure the sun or light source is behind you etc.

The S5100 has quite a large sensor (12MP) so I would happily push the ISO up to 1600 on darker days without worrying about getting noisy images. Also, practice in your garden getting used to the ISO and exposure compensation settings. It will be worth while!

Even now I find myself forgetting basic steps of what makes a good picture, and it will be even more alien to you.

Just remember to learn a) about your equipment and how to get the best from it. b) learn what conditions make for good photography. c) combine a+b and things will start to take shape.

One other point is camera shake. Whenever possible use the timer on the camera. I can't stress enough how the slightest shakes can make for blurry images!

I know I've rattled on here, but hopefully you'll find some of it useful!!

Keep patient mate, I'm still waiting for your fisrt pics!!


June 6, 2011 at 11:30 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Posts: 9

Thanks Danny,

As you've read, I'm not up much on photography. that said, I have taken some decent pics with just a camera. I'll keep practising to get it right. I'll print out your advice and try to remember it.

I'll be going into the countryside soon where it's quiet. It should be better then but I want to try and get the Golden Oriole. They're in the park at the bottom of my garden and I see them often. I used to go to Fordham to see them in the UK.

Take care friend,


June 7, 2011 at 9:28 AM Flag Quote & Reply

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