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05-19-2019, 08:51 PM   #1
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Q7 and P900 super telephoto

The other day I was photographing my workplace buildings using Q7 (12Mp 1/1.7 inch sensor) with a small 250mm f/4.5 telescope. When I focused on a building 2km (1.25 miles) away from me, another building 4km (2.5 miles) away was reasonably in focus due to large depth of field and that was satisfactory to me and a few others.

Anyway, some days later, I remembered that another colleague has Nikon P900, which is a super zoom camera with 18Mp 1/2.3 inch sensor. I wondered how it performs in a super tele application and borrowed it to make a comparison with Q7.

Left is Q7, right is P900, both OOC jpeg. Both were shot on the same day, only minutes apart, both on the same tripod. I first shot with P900 and it was brighter, but the difference is not as drastic as you might think from the pictures. I zooomed in with P900 to get roughly the same angle of view as Q7 and ended up using 214mm f/6.3 (wide open) but it seems like I overshot a bit.

I got similar DOF and nice details in both, you can even see a crow on top of liquid nitrogen tower. Resolution is better on Q7 probably due to better lens (2nd picture is a 1:1 crop, see e.g. three small metal poles at the right edge of the roof that's almost completely invisible on P900) but that's to be expected. WB is very different but that's a matter of personal taste. In other words, no surprise.

But I'm REALLY impressed by P900. The lens is pretty good as an all-in-one solution, SR is better than Q7, less weight than Q7+telescope (my telescope is tiny but still about a foot long incl. Pentax PK adapter, and all metal), usable EVF that doesn't make me sick, and a vari-angle LCD. I'm not sure if AF is good enough for proverbial drunk biker, but I haven't spotted any such biker here fortunately, and it feels snappier than Q7 and, say, 06 lens. Also, zoom is an awesome thing for the field of view equivalent of 1000+mm on FF, fixed focal length like telescopes are really hard to point to where you want to even though I'm reasonably good at it.

I won't trade my Q7 for P900. There are many reasons, the most important is that I like flexibility of interchangeable lens. Ultra wide, macro, super tele, anything inbetween, pretty much for any purpose I have a lens (or lenses) for that. But I have to say Nikon struck a very good balance between the feature set (lens quality and convenience) and price.

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05-19-2019, 09:07 PM   #2
kwb
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Q7 supertelephoto VS Canon 60D crop with the same lens

This is a bit of a silly comparison, but on yet another day I did Q7 VS Canon 60D (APSC 18Mp sensor) using the same 250mm telescope. Atmospheric condition was worse than when I did Nikon P900 test, but it was still possible to see the difference between Q7 and Canon.

Left is Q7, right is 60D cropped to show the same field of view as Q7 and scaled. Again OOC jpeg. DOF is the same this way because the lens is the same. Even before looking at 1:1 crop you can kind of see the lack of details in 60D picture due to smaller pixel density, but 1:1 crop makes it really apparent (top Q7, bottom 60D). Again, no surprise.

If I wanted I could have used a "better" lens on 60D to get more resolution. "Better" not simply better as resolution is not everything, but anyway something like my 480mm f/6 telescope would have been "better" as far as resolution goes, with serious weight, size and DOF penalty, and tripod should be bigger too. But then I could have used that telescope on Q7 to see smaller birds, maybe a house finch or kestrel or something like that if I were lucky.
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05-19-2019, 11:29 PM   #3
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An interesting comparison thanks. The Q holds up well against larger sensors that are cropped.
05-21-2019, 08:32 AM   #4
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My experience with P900 files is that the camera applies such heavy lens corrections that they can only be printed up to about 5x7. What looks like atmospheric haze in the examples above also appears in closer in shots on birds and such. The files take on a "painted" appearance.

It's certainly an amazing camera for what it does, all in one package. But the Q7, with its raw file ability, is certainly more flexible. And a lot more fun.


As for the P1000, despite being an absolute behemoth, the three guys who I know who bought one, all returned them.

05-21-2019, 09:26 PM   #5
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Thanks Ontarian50 for sharing your personal experience.
QuoteOriginally posted by Ontarian50 Quote
My experience with P900 files is that the camera applies such heavy lens corrections that they can only be printed up to about 5x7. What looks like atmospheric haze in the examples above also appears in closer in shots on birds and such. The files take on a "painted" appearance.
Certainly I've noticed a heavy noise reduction. Despite that, I can easily imagine that this is like an absolute convenience package e.g. for birders, by that Idon't mean photographers who take bird shots but bird enthusiasts who take pictures to identify bird species and that kind of stuff.
QuoteQuote:
It's certainly an amazing camera for what it does, all in one package. But the Q7, with its raw file ability, is certainly more flexible. And a lot more fun.
Exactly.
QuoteQuote:
As for the P1000, despite being an absolute behemoth, the three guys who I know who bought one, all returned them.
That's interesting. Do you know the reason why?
05-21-2019, 10:20 PM   #6
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I thought P1000 has RAW, does it not?

*Edit* Im sure it has RAW file support, so should address the painted JPG in camera processing issue. Interested in why they returned their P1000s ! I had a thread before asking how these new super bridge cameras compared to Qs with a tele lens. I concluded the IS and fast AF would be tops.

+Flippy screen.
+Electronic viewfinder

Last edited by 2old4toys; 05-22-2019 at 02:18 AM.
05-23-2019, 07:22 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by kwb Quote
Thanks Ontarian50 for sharing your personal experience.

Certainly I've noticed a heavy noise reduction. Despite that, I can easily imagine that this is like an absolute convenience package e.g. for birders, by that Idon't mean photographers who take bird shots but bird enthusiasts who take pictures to identify bird species and that kind of stuff.
Exactly.
That's interesting. Do you know the reason why?
It seems the main complaint was the softness of images at the long end of the zoom. None of the guys were prepared to tackle raw file processing. They just wanted a camera that could deliver sharp JPEGs, and they all felt it fell short.
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