I can't make up my mind what I feel is best for bird photography and record shots. So, I decided this evening to carry out a quick experiment with the photographic and optical equipment I have at my disposal.
I have only cropped the pictures, all to the same size. This allows an appreciation of the magnification achieved with each method.
The female tufted duck was a very cooperative model, and maintained a steady distance throughout the photo shoot. Unlike the male, who was all over the place. The female Tufty was approximately 40 yards away throughout the process.
First off, iscoping. Opticron HR 66 ED with 40809 (x27) eyepiece. iPhone 4S hand held.
Not bad! Colours a little dark.
Next, Panasonic FS 10 compact camera through HR66 ED scope, Simple push on adapter. Manual shutter release by hand.
Finally, my Canon SX40 bridge camera on full optical zoom which is 800mm (Approx x17)
Not a good as the above two shots?
So, what have I learnt here?
Well. It seems there is no "best" method, it depends on conditions. For real quality shots with fine detail if you can get close enough, or for constantly moving subjects. The Canon Sx40 is the best tool for the job.
The iPhone through the scope also does a very acceptable job at distance. It is also convenient as it is always in my pocket.
However, the Panasonic compact through the scope has clearly produced the best shot here. It has the most detail, best colour rendition and highest magnification. This is something that I will need to look into a little more.
It's interesting stuff.