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How to photograph – Bird In Flight (BIF)

December 7, 2015

Photograph of a Bird in flight (Typically called as BIF) images are considered to be most difficult as a genre of photographing motion. It involves a perfect combination of an experienced photographer and his gear. Both are subjected to a challenge by the flying Bird to get a super freeze during his flight.

White Throated King Fisher

White Throated King Fisher

Green Bee Eater

Green Bee Eater

When shooting a bird perching or sitting on a branch, probably you get time to adjust your Camera and position yourself with respect to light and camouflage.  But when the same bird is flying over the top or in front, what you do not have with you is – Time to react!

 

Tips for BIF shots using a DSLR

  1. Use a Faster Shutter Speed – more than 1/1000 or 1/1600 depending on bird’s movement.
  2. Use an Aperture good enough to stop down your lens by at least one-stop. Faster the lens better is the light available at higher shutter speeds. Recommended lenses are with max. Aperture f2.8 and f4.0. However, some super zooms are also used in Birding having Apertures as narrow as f6.3.
  3. Use a telephoto lens. At least 300mm should be the focal length available with you to capture birds and BIF shots successfully by your camera. For some reason, even 600mm is not enough at certain moments. But anything between 300mm and 600mm is a decent reach for capturing the BIF shots.
  4. For Birds in Flight – you have set your Camera for a continuous focus mode where the camera is continuously trying to adjust focus on the target subject. For Nikon users this is AF-C mode and for Canon gear this is Servo mode for AF. You may refer to the manual of your Camera to learn the settings required.
  5. Last but not the least, Be Ready to shoot the flying bird with the Camera’s AF screen holding the flying bird in your view. Your speed is very important for clicking and trailing the bird with your viewfinder.

    Bar Headed Geese

    Bar Headed Geese

Post Production Processing is almost inevitable in such shots.

The success is defined by Sharpness of the feathers and details in the wings. Bird’s eye should be also sharp enough and if you are lucky, you may get a twinkle of Sun’s reflection to add life in your image.

Bar Headed Geese

Bar Headed Geese

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recommended Gear

Camera

Any DSLR with Shutter Speeds up to 1/2000 or more with AF enabling Continuous focussing during the capture.

Lenses

Typical lenses are –

Tamron 150-600 f5.6-6.3

Sigma 150-600 f5.6-6.3 Contemporary & Sports

Nikon 300mm F4.0 , 200mm-500mm , 500mm f4.0 etc.

Canon 300mm F4.0L, 400mm f4.0L etc.

Tripod

Please avoid for BIF shots

So Happy Birding! Select your gear @ www. Camveu.com or Write to us with queries in this page.

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TIPs for Buying A USED DSLR CAMERA

September 29, 2015

Welcome to Camveu… friends!

Most of our budding photographers are always wondering if they can trust a USED DSLR or a lens / accessory offered in the market. Upgrading from a Compact Digital Camera to a DSLR or yearning to try Full Frame sensors are the most common tendencies of the modern photography bugs.  We, at Camveu, would like to share some tips and facts about the market of USED gear for all concerned.

 

First of all, may I address here to the most common fears attached with shopping for Used Gear –

 

Fear -1                  The used equipment must be damaged one due to some accident.

Not always the case. This is actually very rare and would be visible in pictures and during the physical examination before final purchase.

 

Fear -2                  There must be some defect in the equipment and hence being sold off.

Again not always the case. Usually this is also very rare that offered gear is defective. Most of the times the seller is upgrading his gear or has some of the cameras/ lenses etc. not being used often by him which would be better sold off. 

 

Fear -3                  The price would not be realistic of such an equipment.

This can be addressed by some intelligent comparisons and checking all options available by the buyer. Anyways, it should not stop you from evaluating an option of negotiating with the seller.  

 

Fear -4                  This is not safe to meet a stranger and do business in used equipment.

Frankly, this is a genuine fear in some places and situations. The users of Camveu and buyers are advised to take all possible precautions in executing any transaction at their end. Camveu doesn’t take any responsibility of any such meetings / happenings during these meetings which are scheduled / fixed entirely on personal levels by buyers and sellers at their risk and free will. Please refer to the terms of use for Camveu.com for details.

Too much of legal stuff .. isn’t ? Well,  in today’s world of digital business, we would like to mention that such offline transactions are increasingly getting common. By following some careful precautions you can deal safely and in a secured manner.

 

Fear -5                  The equipment offered may be stolen. 

This can be addressed by establishing the confirmed identity of the seller. You can as well insist on showing you a personal ID during the discussions/ meetings to ascertain a genuine seller. 

 

In the industry of Photography – usually Cameras, Lenses and other accessories are made very robust by the manufacturers. These gear have a reasonable service life up to 10-15 years depending on the usage. By shopping for a USED gear, you can get your hands on usually a fully functional equipment at reasonable prices.  Money saved is Money earned… isnt? 😉

 

Photography enthusiasts who are wanting to buy a DSLR for example – easily can check some useful Tips below while making the purchase and walk with a dream gear at cheaper costs.

 

1.  Physical Examination of the DSLR

The most important time in selecting the gear is the Physical Examination for any visible damages / repairs / assemblies. During this time you can easily make out if the camera was previously damaged or not. 5dDo not worry about some scratches due to use or a rubber coming off its place. These are normal and shows only that the gear was used and is probably in functional condition.D90

Dust on the body is also not so serious matter and can be cleaned properly later.

 

2.  Shutter Count of DSLR Camera

This actually decides the working life and remaining life of any DSLR. Cameras used extensively are going to have a higher shutter count and hence lesser remaining life as declared by the manufacturer. Generally speaking most of the DSLR have an average life of 100,000 to 200,000 Shutter counts. You can refer to the specifications of any DSLR as provided by the manufacturer.

shutterWhile buying a used DSLR – you should check the expired life to know the condition and past usage of the same. Based on the shutter count remaining, the price can be estimated and negotiated by you during the transaction.

 

In order to examine the shutter count – you can take a JPEG picture from the DSLR and upload the same without any editing on any of the available sites on web assisting you to know the shutter count. You can refer to camerashuttercount.com and many alike sites. They normally do not store your picture and just retrieve the shutter count for your reference.

 

3.  Image Sensor condition

Please transfer some pictures to PC and view them at 100% size to know if there are any scratches / dust particles on the sensor. Shoot with a smaller aperture like F16 or F18 to enhance such defects in the image. You can take image of a clear sky or a white wall. Do not forget to shoot also a darker subject / black BG to know if some pixels are damaged.

No DSLR will be having a 100% clean sensor when in use.  You are OK to see some spots in some places which can be cleaned at any authorised service station. Scratches leaving long marks should not be common in images and such gear should be devalued drastically.

While shooting black colour / lens cap or something – please check for the dead pixels. Out of many M Pixels some may be dead which is not so uncommon. But having more than 15-20 and having them in one place on sensor means a damaged sensor.

4.  Check Camera Flash points and Lens mounts carefully    

These areas should be crisp and clean from any visible marks of repair or damage. These areas will decide if the gear is actually useful or not. Please carry some of your own lenses and check the AF function – speed /accuracy etc. before considering to purchase the DSLR.

 

5.  Meeting point

As mentioned above, please be responsible and careful in selecting the meeting place for the transaction. Please use common public places which are generally occupied in that time of the day. Take your own time in evaluating the DSLR. Do not hurry up.  Do not hand over the money unless you are fully satisfied with the equipment and have a clear way out to return from the rendezvous.

 

So what are you waiting for … shop around for your much wanted cameras like D600, D7000 or D800E or 5Ds and 7Ds at reasonable prices. They will come to you much earlier in life and you don’t have to wait for long periods of collecting your secret camera funds to pay for the new ones.

Camveu wishes you Happy Times in shopping for your gear.

CU @ Camveu ! 😉