Yes, this is a bit geeky but lots of other birders and photo people have an equipment page so we shall have one too – and because people do ask, quite often. I am a biologist that takes photographs rather then a photographer who has hopes to be commissioned by National Geographic. If there is one thing I leaned in my career it is that cheap optics are lousy optics,
Sony a7ii mirrorless (full frame sensor) interchangeable lens camera body. Mostly used for landscape, macro and botanical photography.
- Voigtlander 12mm ultra-wide angle lens – very specialised, but when you want it then it delivers the goods.
- Zeiss 35mm f2.8 lens – stunningly sharp lens
- Canon 24-105mm image stabilized L-series lens (bulky, but a good all purpose landscape to portrait lens)
- Canon 100mm macro lens
- Metabones and Fotodiox Canon EF to Sony e-mount lens adapters
Sony RX10-mark3 “super-zoom” camera (finally, bridge cameras have got good lenses – in this case a Zeiss 24-600mm telephoto) suitable for decent bird and wildlife photography. Brilliant as a walking around camera)
Sony Nex-7 mirrorless (APS-C size sensor – 1.6x crop factor) interchangeable lens camera body (note – an excellent compromise when weight and bulk are an issue and the camera needs to fit in a (capacious) pocket but now overtaken by the RX10m3 and so now mostly used as my Digiscoping camera.)
It’s not realistic to go everywhere with “big glass” so I have added a Sony RX100 for my pocket. A tiny thing, barely larger than a smartphone but with a proper lens, a larger sensor and more controls and options than you can shake a stick at. A joy forever I hope and it should usually be with grabbing distance when opportunity knocks. Miraculous electronics and optics in such a small package, how they fit it all in I have no idea.
Occasionally I publish a picture taken with an iPhone. Sometimes that’s all I have with me. It can produce surprisingly acceptable images. I don’t quite understand people whose only camera is a phone, but you have to use what’s in your pocket.
My standard quality camera for some years before I went over to Sony was a Canon EOS 7D SLR body – excellent equipment, but bulky and heavy and so eventually sold to someone with stronger arms than me. I did, however, retain two lenses, superb lenses, for use with the Sony cameras as adapters are available. Some earlier images on the archive photo site were taken with this camera.
- Manfrotto carbon-fiber tripod with ball head and pan heads for cameras
- Manfrotto aluminium tripod (light) for the spotting scope
- Manfrotto aluminium tripod (tall and heavy) with gimble head for video
- Manfrotto monopod – 4 section, short, packs well in case.
Birding and Digiscoping Equipment:
- Swarovski 8×32
- Leica 10×42
- Swarovski ATX/STX 65 mm with 25-60x zoom eyepiece
- Swarovski TLS/APO digiscoping adapter with mounts for Canon and Sony e-mount lenses