Canon SX50 (and, we hope, SX60) from BIRDING perspective

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WalkerC
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Canon SX50 (and, we hope, SX60) from BIRDING perspective
6 months ago

There has been lots of speculation about Canon's SX60, a true legend in a future time. Or so it seems now, in early June 2014, when some of us have "wondered" about this camera-to-be for over a year.

Why?

Because, intentionally or by chance, Canon created a bird-watcher's dream with the SX50. I'm 67. Half a century ago, my teenage-self talked about the thrill it would be to share the things we were seeing with friends. People are born sensitive to a natural world, or not sensitive to it. We try to kindle other people's interests.

We say we are given our oxygen and our sugars (carbohydrates) from green leaves: we could not be on this planet without them. We wish there was a Photosynthesis Day; it seems so obvious. No, Earth Day is too political for our liking. But, Anyway.

So our impossible dream of being able to photograph a few of the 300 to 400 dpecies of birds that are on many city-lists is now a possibility.

We "grab" these pictures with delight. There are a few superbly talented individuals are some lucky shots which provide both close-up pictures AND very good photography. But that doesn't matter. "Grabs" are "impossible pictures" we are SO happy to get. In fact, "grabs" are most likely for the first pictures we get of most species. "This is not a great picture, but it is the best I have ever taken--maybe the only photo I've ever taken--of this species." This could not be done, the way I describe, before now. Even with a ton of money, we didn't have the speed, or the possibility of doing this without a tripod. I'm talking about being in the right place at the right time--for 7 seconds. Or, lucky lucky you, for 20 seconds.

The Sony HX100v was darned good. The Nikon P5xx series is right in there too. I like the Canon SX50 because (1) it has the 1200mm-equiv lens; (2) the LCD screen can be completely reversed for most of my walking time; (3) the "tiny, too-tiny, ridiculously inadequate, 1/7th-minimum-size, useless" sensor has not been a problem AT ALL in either Costa Rican cloud forest nor Pacific Northwest rainforest.

Please, Mr. Canon: (1)The camera would capture many birds better with 60p, like a Sony, for video. (2) The auto-focus is very good but is ALWAYS going to be too slow and too wrong, on any camera, so a "perfecter" auto-focus would be so nice. (3) The camera settings should be momentarily freezeable, as on a cell-phone, to prevent the base of my thumb from accidentally pressing buttons and costing me, by now, hundreds of good pictures. It happens every time I go on a photography walk.

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Hence a birder's interest in the SX60. Might Canon improve some of those features? Oh, I love the SX50. But that's just the point.

What about that Auto mode I just mentioned? Well, it's the best technique when you have 7 seconds. That includes the time you have to actually GET your moving bird into the field of view. For hummingbirds, I can generally get my shot in about 4 seconds; I'm old but still pretty quick. Typical time a hummingbird waits for me: 3 seconds. So, yes, Autio.

Why not a movie camera? Well, weight. A pound. I own four tripods, if I include my monopod. Which of these do I take along with me in Monteverde, Costa Rica? None.

In a world where 4 seconds is a second too late, and where I leave my cell phone behind because it weighs too much, well, you get the picture.

No problem if you think bird-watchers like me are weird or quirky or screwy. We grew up with a lot of folk thinking so; we're, like, TOtahlly, used to that. LOL. You had to be there.

But now we would like to share a few of our favourite miracles with you. And that is our own peculiar, particular interest in Canon and the Strange Case of the Missing Legend: the Canon PowerShot SX60.

 WalkerC's gear list:WalkerC's gear list
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H3 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V Canon PowerShot SX260 HS Canon PowerShot SX50 HS
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V
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