Featured: 'Herons (some BIF) with Nikon V3 and 70-300CX' by The Smoking Camera

Discussion in 'Open Gear Talk' started by The Smoking Camera, Jul 15, 2014.

  1. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    A few images of black crowned night herons on the edge of a marsh here in Hawaii. Used the Nikon V3 and recently released 70-300CX lens (189-810mm equivalent). The setup weighs less than two pounds so I was able to handhold for a couple of hours. Burst rate is 20fps with continuous focusing and the camera does a reasonable job of tracking. Hope you enjoy these.

    p290651145-5.

    p448699384-5.

    p396456331-5.

    p172241288-5.

    p118358352-6.

    p55363091-6.

    p223913749-5.

    p372696096-5.

    p30856194-6.
     
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  2. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    Great sequence. That's a whole lot of reach in a relatively small package.
     
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  3. BillN

    BillN SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 25, 2010
    S W France
    Bill
    Very good set Joe

    cannot find any reviews on the CX lens, but it looks very good, albeit expensive!!
     
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  4. Jock Elliott

    Jock Elliott SC All-Pro

    Jan 3, 2012
    Troy, NY
    That is impressive!
     
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  5. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    That 70-300 is the thing that attracts me most to the system. I'm just going to keep telling myself that I don't need it.
     
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  6. john m flores

    john m flores SC All-Pro

    Aug 13, 2012
    Looks great, but Please don't show this to my wife!
     
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  7. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    Appreciate the comments. Definitely a small package to get to 800mm. And yes expensive until you compare with other options to get this kind of reach. Have not seen any reviews as well but I suspect they will be positive. Now waiting for the surf to pick up here in Hawaii. Thanks again.
     
  8. BillN

    BillN SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 25, 2010
    S W France
    Bill
    Joe - it must be tough living in Hawaii - I've been once many years ago and loved the place, and the food, (which is unusual for the US)
     
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  9. RT Panther

    RT Panther SC All-Pro

    Dec 25, 2012
    Joe, you rock!
    A perfect image example of the "1" system was designed to do!
     
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  10. demiro

    demiro Serious Compacts For Life

    527
    Dec 15, 2011
    Really great shots Joe. And you're correct, the 70-300 is basically a bargain if you compare it to the Canon and Nikon lenses typically used to capture shots like these.

    I still think the V3 body is a bit steep, but if the results with that lens are somewhat unique to the new body then I may have to rethink my opinion.
     
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  11. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    Bill, yeah tough living in Hawaii. lol
    Thanks RT Panther. This is precisely what the 1 inch sensor was intended to do and it does it quite well.
    Thanks demiro and exactly - hard to find something this small, light and inexpensive when compared to Canon and Nikon.

    I'm certainly not a birder and in fact only since I picked up a V3 have I attempted photographing birds and only since I picked up the 70-300CX last week have I tried for BIF. There are some drawbacks worth noting. This is a good light setup plain and simple and works best at ISO 400 or less. And the lens doesn't help at 300mm f5.6 (810mm due to 2.7x FOV factor) Once ISO hits 1600 or higher details are lost. May not be important for street photography but very important for birds or where detail is needed. Secondly, at high frame rates the camera is limited to 40 shots then writes to the card which takes about 15 to 20 seconds to empty. However, if you take 40 shots, release the shutter for a second or two and then hit again, you will get all 40 initial shots and about ten each subsequent set. Hope this makes sense.

    That's it for now except I am adding three links below. These are 20 to 30 shot sequences shot raw with continuous focus on as I tracked some birds in flight. Rather than show all the photos I downsized the images and created clips at 6fps so you can see the camera tracking the birds. Gotta say, this may be the first mirrorless camera setup that can do BIF. Now I patiently await the big surf in Hawaii.

    Thanks. Joe

    First Heron BIF
    Second Heron BIF
    Egret BIF
     
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  12. demiro

    demiro Serious Compacts For Life

    527
    Dec 15, 2011
    Clips are even more impressive, as is the fact that you just started shooting BIF last week!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  13. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    Thanks demiro. Well, I do shoot ballet so that helps. lol. Seriously, I have all the respect in the world for birders and their concentration, anticipation and reflexes. And for shooting in non-Hawaii weather. By the way,these were shot hand held. Lens does not come come with a tripod mount - bad Nikon! Just received it as an add on.
     
  14. nippa

    nippa SC Top Veteran

    561
    Aug 7, 2010
    Cheshire UK
    Dennis
    Those shots brought me up sharp.
    If the little Nikon and its talented photographer can do that there might be hope for m4/3 where such shots are possible but , I'd be shooting at 3fps to keep each shot in focus and 8fps if I were just banging away.
    Thanks for posting.
    I love the bird in flight shots.
     
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  15. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Really impressive Joe. I'm just playing around with focus tracking for the first time with Nikon's DSLR system, just practicing on seagulls at the Jersey Shore, and I'm finding it easier than expected. But with that reach, at 20 fps, and at that SIZE! Wow! Someday those sensors will be good to 3200 (the Sony versions of the 1" already are pretty close) and that setup will be that much more flexible. Not for low light, but just easier to do stuff in OK light... Still not a small lens, but tiny for the reach...

    -Ray
     
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  16. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    Thanks Ray. Always nice to have you chime in. Never realized you're a birder. lol. Which Nikon are using for this? Yeah, sensors getting better for these small rigs, but not quite there yet. Soon, hopefully. Take care and hope to contribute more in the future. Regards, Joe
     
  17. Another fine example of what these "Compact" cameras can do.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Joe, these BIF shots are great. Just took some time viewing your V1 shots on your website. Man, oh man. You do very nice work. I never would have guessed they came from a small sensor cam..... a potent reminder that the shooter matters more than the camera.
     
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  19. The Smoking Camera

    The Smoking Camera SC Regular

    68
    Oct 20, 2013
    Hawaii
    Joe Marquez
    Agree with you Dave. Who could have imagined a few years ago it would be possible to handhold a 800mm equivalent lens with a mirrorless camera and track BIF. Amazing times we live in.

    Thanks Luke. Glad you enjoyed the V1 photos on my site. A very under appreciated camera and a bargain today. By comparison, seems like I paid for every tiny pixel in the V3.
     
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  20. One word "Fantastic and Awesome" oops .. that was two words..
    Doug
     
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