I'd been pondering over which camera to purchase for months, initially wanting the Canon SX-50 which has proved very popular among folks I know. But as my main interest is taking pictures of dragonflies, closer scrutiny revealed the macro isn't as good as I hoped it would be, so I ended up searching the specs and reviews of about 50 different bridge cameras.
I wanted a superzoom with a better than average macro and after a lot of studious eliminations (though almost tripped up on another Panasonic 'til I realised it didn't have a viewfinder, not much use for photographing outside in the sunshine) and eventually settled for the X-S1 which ticked just about every box; 26x Zoom, Macro and SuperMacro function, viewfinder, Manual zoom, a better than average focus sensor and both auto and manual settings (for when I learn a bit more about it). Only downer seemed to be the bulk and weight, but now I have it that's no big deal.
Couldn't wait to get started but having been victim of a severe lurgy for three days I could only manage a few shots of the back garden over the weekend, testing out the superzoom potential.
And considering the overcast conditions, distance and being taken through double-glazing they didn't turn out too bad.
|Blackbird at 26x on the side hedge (about 25 feet away)|
|Carrion Crow at 26x about 50 yards away|
|Blue tit at 26x at bottom of garden 30ft away|
Feeling better today and nice and bright conditions I managed an hour or so at Far Pasture to give it its first field test, but as I bumped in to Roly who I hadn't seen since last October I spent more time chatting than snapping. Plenty of birds around though so I did get a few opportunities.
|Black-headed gulls at far end of pond|
|Moorhen caught on the move|
|Coal tit eyeing up lunch|
|Treecreeper, not bad for the only shot of him I managed to get|
|Dunnock in Close-up|
Last test back at home when I decided to test the supermacro on some damselfly exuviae I collected last year :
Can't remember which species these were, one of the blues I'm sure, but must say I'm more than happy with these test results all taken on auto, so a bit of fine tuning and I'll be like David Bailey :-)
Roll on summer, but this time I'll make sure the camera stays around my neck at all times while I'm around water, don't want another Stargategate :-O