Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digital SLR and Interchangeable Lens Cameras > Canon Lenses

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old May 26, 2007, 1:42 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 6
Default

I'v been joking a few times about putting a telescope instead of a telephoto lens...I haven't done it, but of course a lot of ppl are already doing it! I'ts called digiscoping.

...It's what I discovered yesterday :-)

So what are your thoughts about this technique, especially for birding or macro, it produces incredible images!

I'm in the process of choosing a wildlife lens, mostly for birding and zoo.So this adds new possibilities. Some scopes makes equivalent reach of over 2000mm !



I had narrowed it down to 5 lens (i know its still many).

I have a 20D with the 17-85mm IS.

Canon 300mm f4 (I rented it 2 days ago, I liked it a lot, rarely felt it was "slow", but no AF with TC x2)
Canon 300mm f2.8(Buyinga usedNOT IS, looks like a good deal.( I reserved one for rental in 2 weeks ).

Sigma 100-300 f4
Sigma 120-300 f2.8 (Cheap way of getting f2.8! + zoom! Amazing pictures with just the lens. But when used with a TC,I really don't like the bokeh!

Canon 100-400 (but too many ppl complain of lack of sharpness, and its a slow lens which means more noise / higher iso. I had planned to rent it to try)



Anyone knows advantages & disadvantageof a scope (something like "Swarovski ATS-80 HD") vsany of thoselens?

It also looks like a much cheaper alternative to get a crazy zoom than paying the big price of a canon 500mm!

Here is a nice gallery with that technique, I find his pictures to be particularly sharp, without being over-sharpened in Photoshop (even tho he sharpens and level them a bit):
http://mugil.gfxartist.com/artworks/92539



I have the budget for any of those lens, but of course we all try to spend wisely! ...And try to avoid spending thousands more for a "5%" improvement over a much cheaper lens.

All sugestions are very welcomed!



Here is a shot from yesterday with the rented canon 300 f4. (Cropping is a bit too tight). I find the sharpness to be "fine" butI feel it could be better. Shutter speed was 1/750, maybe if it was 1/1000 would have been better.
http://guillaumeletual.gfxartist.com/artworks/149428


Ps: thanks to nidza for answering the 2.8 vs IS question, it helped in my choices.





Saarto is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old May 27, 2007, 5:51 AM   #2
NHL
Senior Member
 
NHL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: 39.18776, -77.311353333333
Posts: 11,547
Default

I'm sure that Swarovski ATS-80 HD is a nice scope...

I have never use one, but have looked through similar scopes via other birders on many trips - Judging by the size of theses optics I wonder how the resulting images are mapped to the camera. Would it cover the whole frame for example? But then if you only need the center part for the bird then who cares...

Many people here including myself have the last two lenses you listed: Sigma 120-300 f2.8,Canon 100-400, and in my case the Canon 500mm as well so we can give you a lot of input on these lenses, but I'm afraid I can't contribute any to the digiscoping discussion.

A smaller optic that can cover a longer range than 500mm is a very nice thing to have IMO as I go through airports quite often. I've been exploring this option through higher crop factor cameras, and like you have observed, having the f/2.8 is also very nice. The 120-300 on a 2x body is equivalent to a 240-600 f/2.8 for example, before any TC (and the Oly body has built-in IS to boot!!!). I guess the Swarovski ATS-80 HD would work even better on a smaller cropped-sensor camera... Heck even a P&S would work I think in good light, the lack of AF is something else though (bird in flight is not going to be a forte here...)!
-> Does anyone know what the maximum f/# for the Swarovski? :idea:
NHL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 27, 2007, 6:58 AM   #3
Super Moderator
 
peripatetic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 3,599
Default

I have a feeling that the scopes can't mount onto a DSLR very easily.

They work great on P&S though.

I know Leica scopes can mount on the Panasonic/Leica P&S cameras.

Most scopes are made for eyes not cameras, and eyes are much better at coping in low light conditions than sensors.

http://www.digiscopediary.co.uk/
peripatetic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 27, 2007, 8:37 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 188
Default

http://www.digiscopediary.co.uk/dslr.html

I found this sublink based on the one above. Sounds like you get F14 and 1/1000 of a second with one of the two techniques.


Person above when using Lens with Scope used Canon Zoom. I would imagine the best results would come from using a 35 or 50mm prime lens. As you guys probablyh know with out even looking. The lens this person used was not so great.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/R...ns-Review.aspx

anthlover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 27, 2007, 11:42 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
hgernhardtjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 516
Default

peripatetic wrote:
Quote:
I have a feeling that the scopes can't mount onto a DSLR very easily.
Actuallythat depends on the type of 'scope you have. I have never had a problem mounting any SLR or dSLR to my various Celestrons or Meades over the years ... all easily take t-mount adapters. If your 'scope has a slide-in-slide-out or even screw-oneyepiece, I am sure there is a corresponding prime focus adapter for the t-mount which fits your dSLR.

The Swarovski mentioned has an adapter that requires a t-mount, but B&H is costly:http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc..._Digital_.html

Over the uears I have had great success using my big Celestron SCT for both astro and terrestrial photography.
hgernhardtjr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 29, 2007, 2:48 PM   #6
NHL
Senior Member
 
NHL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: 39.18776, -77.311353333333
Posts: 11,547
Default

Saarto wrote:
Quote:
It also looks like a much cheaper alternative to get a crazy zoom than paying the big price of a canon 500mm!
I've been looking at this $2000+ Swarovski and the $400+ dSLR adapter
That's almost the price of the 120-300 f/2.8 without the T-mount!!!
... and what do you get?
a) slow (f/14)
b) manual focus lens
c) tripod absolutely required set-up

If I was to pick I'll get the Sigma first for all its convenience over the 500mm instead :idea:
-> Action shot with the 120-300 f/2.8 taken yesteday with the 2xTC:



NHL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30, 2007, 1:30 AM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 6
Default

That's smart of you NHL: when there is no background, I cant complain about the bokeh of the 120-300mm + TC :blah:

I like action shots,so a slow "lens"and no AF option...kinda makes me disregard the Swarovski ATS-80 HD scope at the moment.

I'm down to 3 lenses now, (instead of 5) ...Well get it down to 1 eventually



Pretty much: Canon 300mm f2.8 (NOT IS) vs. Sigma 120-300 f2.8 vsSigma 100-300 f4.

The 300mm f2.8 noneIS,is currently the favorite but its not a final decision.



Eliminated the 100-400: it's a slow lens, and isn't quite as sharp, needs to be stopped down to have nice sharpness and then u get a really slow lens!

Canon 300 f4...was nice, but I'm not quite satisfied of the bird shots I took with it. But for people and larger animals its stunning! F4 was great in sunlight but just "ok" in the forest... 2.8 is prolly more what I'm after.

I still keep the sigma 100-300 f4 in my picks, its f4 but I could live with itsince it gotthe convenience of thezoom, its very low price, lightweight and very sharp, (slightly more than the 120-300 on lab tests.)

I found no local shop where I could rent the Sigma 120-300 f2.8 , to give it a fair test. They only rent canon / nikon / indoor studio equipment. (Still waiting for the 300mm f2.8 to be available at the rental store, some dude took it for 3 weeks.)

I like going for a full day of walk with a backpackfor like 12-16 hours in a day. I'm 22 in great shape. Weight wise, the 300 f4 for the whole day walk,felt like "it wasn't there".

So weight wise, can the Sigma 120-300 f2.8 be handheld and carriedfor long time. Many says no... is it still in the weight range where it depend on the individual, or its just too heavy for anyone to be convinient (like the 500mm-600mm L).The 120-300 is actually a bit lighter than the 300mm f2.8, (5.7 lbs vs 6.0lbs)and opinions ifthe 300 f2.8can be handheld are divided.

Additional inputs are very welcomed!



ps: NHL, in your wildlife photo, you have many taken at 400mm, which lens is it? a prime or the 100-400? You also seamed to have tried the 70-200, how did that go? felt a bit short range? the 2.8 not IS looks very sharp, and the 70-200 f4 has stellar sharpness performance on http://www.photozone.de







Saarto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30, 2007, 8:07 AM   #8
NHL
Senior Member
 
NHL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: 39.18776, -77.311353333333
Posts: 11,547
Default

Saarto wrote:
Quote:
That's smart of you NHL: when there is no background, I cant complain about the bokeh of the 120-300mm + TC :blah:

I like action shots,so a slow "lens"and no AF option...kinda makes me disregard the Swarovski ATS-80 HD scope at the moment.
I posted that image for several reasons (and not for the lack of background ):
1. My latest shot(s) from the day before
2. Action shot which I couldn't live without AF
3. Quite acceptable result for a 2xTC combo
4. A Tight shot which I could zoomed out of (instead of a prime)

This is a 600mm image with background of the 120-300:





-> I must admit the 500 f/4L has the nicest bokeh out of any lenses I've own and one can not get this kind of bokeh out of any 300mm lens couple to a 2xTC; However, shooting with a 500mm carry a double whammy (beside attracting a lot of attention): It's a heavy lens and you need to carry another shorter zoom with you unless you want to end up with a lot of portraits - This end up a lot more cumbersome because I usually paired it with the 100-400L (since it's lighter than the Sigma) which I can carry in a "bazooka" style padded bag slung across my shoulder.

In town and local parks I favor the 120-300 f/2.8 over the 100-400L:
1. The 100-400L is slower
2. I can not reach 600mm with the 100-400L
3. In the same "bazooka" bag I can now shove a 12-24, 28-135/150mm macro, and a flash all stacked on top of one another and have every focal lenght (from 12-600mm) coverage for any occasion.

As you can tell this "bazooka" style of padded bag is made for a tripod, but I always tend leave this device home, and use its case to conveniently carry the lenses instead - If you can handhold a 500mm f/4 then you can handhold anything...:lol::-):-)

The 600mm is the one I can't handhold nor conveniently fly with on most trips (i.e. two carry-on only). Plus like the Swarovski the tripod is a required companion for all your travels as well with a 600mm!




Quote:
I still keep the sigma 100-300 f4 in my picks, its f4 but I could live with it since it got the convenience of the zoom, its very low price, lightweight and very sharp, (slightly more than the 120-300 on lab tests.
If I have only 1 choice, I would have picked the 100-300 f/4EX as well
-> As sharp as a prime, but a zoom instead...
and when coupled with a 1.4xTC it exceeds the reach of the 100-400L with no sacrifice in IQ!
BTW this Sigma also outperforms the 70-200 f4L which everyone raves about... :idea:



In the spirit of full-disclosure I'm 50/50 black and white so I'm not partial to any brand: :G
(left to right: 70-200 f/2.8EX, 100-400 f/5.6L, 120-300 f/2.8EX, 500 f/4L)


NHL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30, 2007, 7:23 PM   #9
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 6
Default

Waaaa! nice lens picture! :-)

That bird pic is very good too, i cant complain about the bokeh of this one, its a good sample of 120-300 + 2x TC!

And my favorite of your bird shots (thats 100% subjective) is also from the 120-300: http://www.pbase.com/nhl/image/46768813

Saarto is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 5:12 PM.