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Cameras [digital slr] for Aerial photography

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Hi Alan,


Hardly a pro but I use a Canon Power Shot A95 in the


cockpit. It's light, is 5 megapixels, has lots of features, ashort


shutter lag, and importantly, has a variable position view finder (monitor) that allows me to point and shoot out the sides w/out having to take too much attention away from the forward view.


I think you will find the Power Shot 610 supercedes my camera and is now around $200 (not bad considering I got mine "cheap" at $470). Do some net browsing of your own and take a look at this site for price comparisons. http://www.smarter.com/photography-6/product/canon_powershot_a610___digital_camera-31525/type=source=google_c+001+004_content_canon_powershot_a610_digital_camera





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Thanks Paul.With all the pics of guess the air field,I thought I would


ask the question.I now have decided on the Canon S3 as it also has


video record and the 12x zoom + IS.The S3+ 2GB card for around $700.00


compares well to a similar setup, Canon 350d DSLR + 70-200 f2.8 zoom


lens would cost $2000.00. Cheers



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I have a 350D after changing over from aNikon D70.


The Canon is smaller in the hand if you have large hands but the images


seem brighter although the Nikon has better lenses.


I would have


to doubt the expense of something like the 350D or D70 unless you are


using it a lot but the good thing with an SLR is the quick turn on and


shoot and very fast inbetween multiple shots especially as an aircraft


is taking off or landing.



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Guest Fred Bear

On a side and relevant note, memory is getting cheap - mate at work


just bought a mini SD card with converter to SD and USB attachment (fits in any mini SD or SD or USB slot)


for $60 delivered for a 2 GIG card. Not bad. He uses it in his O2 ATOM


with Destinator and or Tom Tom GPS programs. You'll see a lot more of


these out there from now on. It's not unlike Ozi Explorer.



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G’day team,


To give


further ideas and views on using a camera for aerial use I use two


cameras usually when flying. The first is a Canon digital IXUSi5. It’s


a very small (9 cm x 4.5 cm x 2 cm) though highly spec’d unit with a 5 megapixel sensor with a fixed (no zoom)


lens of 1:2.8 f-stop. Does all the usual things a modern digital camera


does, stills, video and sound, etc but the main reason I use it is for


talking the ‘quick unplanned pictures’ no focusing or setup… just


shoot. Plus with this cameras panorama and stitching capability allows


one to shoot 180 degree panorama shots one handed in the cockpit


quickly. Also with its size is only and weight it fits into my top


shirt pocket with ease and with a 1 gigabyte card… that’s a lot of




The second digital camera is my very well worn (but still highly reliable)


Minolta DiMage 7i digital SLR camera. This unit has every bell and


whistle that one could ask for and is even able to shoot at frame


speeds up to 15 frames per second! It uses a 5 megapixel sensor too as


above but the image quality is far superior by a country mile… to the


Canon unit above. It’s quite heavy on battery use but it does produce


quite high quality prints. The lens if my memory is right has 17 glass


elements in its construction and allows up to 7 x zoom. When using this


camera in places where there may be camera shake, vibration or


considerable movement I usually set the camera to aperture priority


with a manual shutter speed usually quite high, say, 1000th of higher


which allows for a sharp image capture.




area I have found a problem is the using the small compact digital


cameras are their lack of image sharpness. I’m talking here of high


quality imaging, not your happy snaps.


Of-course there’s always the fall-back position of using one’s mobile phone inbuilt camera too…


A good camera review site is: http://www.dpreview.com/







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  • 4 months later...



For years I had taken thousands of pictures.


And my recomenations are for cameras with speed selection between 1/250 minimun speed much better 1/1000 of a second. Some auto program allows mode Auto S (Speed) you select the speed and camera do other selections.


Other important cuestion is taking the pictures with lenses out of cockpit, putting lenses in the hole of ventilation or lateral window. So the quality on the lenses is not afected by windshield.


Other solution is using polarized filters, but not very usefull.


My camera is a Fujifilm Finepix S5600. Normal resolution 5.1 Megapixels. Memory 1GB. That is about 820 pictures. Other model very similar S9500 (more Megapixels, and More expensive). Aditional information at Internet. You always have the oportunity to modify resolution at the computer. But remember, Speed 1/1000 and lense not affected by the windshield.


I like also Olympus mju 750, 7.1 Megapixels Very small Point and Shoot, Samsung, Nikkon, but performances/quality/price I bought Fujifilm



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Hi EsqualVM1,


We'd all be very interested to see some of your aerial pics from your part of the world :). Perhaps you could post them under the topic heading "Great Trips" with a brief caption. Keeping the file size below 95 kbytes and image size around 650 x 500 pixels should work well.


By the way (BTW), what's your real name?







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I have an el cheapo Fuji digital which gives reasonable results except in the plane it is hopeless. I get colour distortion from the canopy nd intend to remove the canopy for a trial run. I can't see the need for 1000 sec shutter speed as the subject matter is moving very slowly in relation to the camera, Vibration would be the worst problem speed wise and if the camera is hand held that will be accounted for.


My experience with SLR's tells me that they are no better than a good digital with zoom lens. I have done quite a bit of SLR aerial photography for land developers and found that I didn't need to change lenses so there was little need for that ability.


It seems to me that of the big names Canon has the best and the only reason I would buy Nikon is the fact that I have several suitable lenses.





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Silly question,but not for me.


How can I post pictures?


This is my first test, I hope it works.


The picture was taken at 12.000 feet, over peak "Teide", a vulcan, in Tenerife, at Canary Islands. The Helicopter flying is a Bell-205 from Spanish Army. At bottom appears La Gomera Island


My name is Francisco, and 18 years ago I worked for National Safety Council of Australia (NSCA), in firefighting operations with a Bell 212 Helicopter.20060929_105953_Imagen_pico_tei.JPG



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Onya Francisco, great pic ;)0.gif. So, now you know how to post photos, we look forward to seeing more of your world. Regarding image size, try keeping the file size below 95 kbytes and image size around 650 x 500 pixels. This way the pics fit better on the viewer's screen.


Interesting to read of your time with NSCA ... welcome home, sort of.





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Re camera type, I use a Canon Power Shot A95. Affordable, compact, good results and adjustable viewfinder screen (swivels). Very happy with it. Interesting to see the Canon Power Shot gets top rave in this month's Choice magazine.


Had a moment of excitement this week when four Sea Kings dropped in for fuel at Cooma. I had to admire their pilot skills, great control.







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I was using a compact Canon for awhile - but recently took up my Nikon D70S - and the difference is amazing - clarity and ability to enlarge and crop; which meansI can point and shoot in the approx direction of the shotI want - without even looking through the viewfinder - then, whenback on the PC, fiddle away to produce a high quality result -cropped tojust the required subject..


D70S sized digital SLR cameras are a bit bulky - but if excellent results are required - are hard to beat.



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