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Forum Home > Digiscoping Equipment > Equipment overload help and advice wanted

peteart
Member
Posts: 3

I have a number of pieces of equipment and want advice on how to best use for digiscoping and get quality results. Would be great if I could use both Canon EOS and Panasonic Video, although video zoom is fairly good for reach. So far attempts have been pretty awful, but have not invested in proper mounts / adapters.

I have a Acuter DS20 - 80 with 20 to 60x zoom eyepiece. Cameras include Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ3 10x Optical Zoom, Panasonic HDC-TM700 Camcorder 14.2meg with good zoom and camera in built, Canon EOS 50D Body,

 

April 11, 2012 at 2:30 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dannys Digiscoping
Site Owner
Posts: 372

Hi There,

Welcome to the Forum & thanks for your enquiry.

Equipment overload indeed!

Ok, let me be honest. You have a lot of equipment, and a lot of ideas, but as you say, your early attempts have been poor, and I would expect that, so lets slow things down and concentrate on getting you started.

Personally, I'd recommend to any beginner that they start with a compact camera as they do a lot more of the work for you. Have you tried handholding your TZ3 up the the scopes eyepiece and seeing what is on the LCD screen? If you have can you tell me what you saw please?

My instincts tell me that the TZ3 will not work as the zoom is too big, and possibly the lens will have too much of a wide angle to be able to alieviate any vignetting, but sometimes cameras seem to work. This is why I need to know what happens when you handhold the TZ3 up to the scopes eyepiece!

Also, can you tell me if there is a thread UNDERNEATH the scopes eyepiece rubber (just pull it off gently if it will, do NOT unscrew anything!)

Once I have answers to these questions I will try to be clearer about the direction you should take. We'll talk about SLR's and Camcorders later.

Come back to me..

Regards,

Danny.

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April 11, 2012 at 3:17 PM Flag Quote & Reply

peteart
Member
Posts: 3

Hi, yes you guessed right, both Panasonics will not allow me to get rid of the vignetting. I have the ability to attach the canon to the scope after the eye piece, with or without a lens, but need to buy adapters. Also need to buy lenses for the canon body. Would a std prime lens be better than a zoom and would auto stabilised lens be better or worse. Would I be better of spending same money on comapact and using Canon for std use. Do not have a huge budget hence the Acuter scope, but would still like great pics. Thanks for response.

April 11, 2012 at 4:53 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dannys Digiscoping
Site Owner
Posts: 372

Hi,

I think that you have a few options.

1. Buy a universal adapter and a compact camera such as a Nikon P300

2. Buy an older coolpix model, such as the P5100, and adapter tube and a 52-42mm stepping ring to connect to your scopes eyepiece thread

3. Connect your DSLR body to the scopes eyepiece thread using a Canon EF T2 mount

4. Connect your DSLR using either the standard 18-55mm lens or a 50mm f1.8 prime lens.

There are pros and cons to compacts and DSLR digiscoping. Personally I think you should start with a compact and learn that technique first. Understanding your camera and how to get exposure is the key to digiscoping. The compact will need to have several shooting modes. Using auto just wont work!

If you use a DSLR connected via a lens then this will work, however I believe that all the glass in the system makes sharp focussing difficult and I also believe that this method cuts down too much light which isn't good.

Directly connecting a DSLR works better for me, but the technique is very different. You would have to use Av (aperture priority) mode and then control your shutter speed by balancing the available light with the ISO and exposure compensation to get exposure.

The key to being sucessful is learning how to understand exposure and how to achieve it in different lights. The more you zoom in the more light you lose, so the camera then has to be set up to compensate for the loss of light. It sounds difficult, but with practice its not so bad, but it does take patience and practice.

If you do use a DSLR and lens then a big zoom lens will not work, so just use either the 18-55mm lens or a 50mm prime lens.

Digiscoping with a decent compact will give you more than enough zoom as well as being able to control the shutter and aperture to help get the very best exposures.  Again, the camera has to be set up to suit the conditions best, again the best results come in time when you've learnt how to control your exposure.

Regardless of your choice, patience and practice are what makes a good digiscoper. You will find it difficult to get great results straight away so keep expectations low and invest some time into learning.

I hope this helps,

Regards,

Danny.

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April 12, 2012 at 11:28 AM Flag Quote & Reply

peteart
Member
Posts: 3

Danny, thanks for all that help and your time I will look at my options and ponder.

Regards

Pete

April 12, 2012 at 12:59 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dannys Digiscoping
Site Owner
Posts: 372

My pleasure,

Regards,

Danny.

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April 12, 2012 at 2:19 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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