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Viewfinder or LCD?


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I've always used the viewfinder and wouldn't even consider a camera without one.  Now I'm wondering if I've been doing something I abhor - rejecting a tool without first giving it a trial.  I've avoided it on the assumption it would use more battery than the viewfinder's display.

I see people holding their cameras at arms length, and I suspect that both tiring and less stable.  I'm not sure why; it doesn't seem necessary but I have literally never tried to use the screen except to set menu options.

Any opinions, suggestions, comments pro or con?  "Please and thank you!"

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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5 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

I see people holding their cameras at arms length, and I suspect that both tiring and less stable.  I'm not sure why; it doesn't seem necessary but I have literally never tried to use the screen except to set menu options.

This. At least for me, anyway.

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1 hour ago, Charlie Spencer said:

I've always used the viewfinder and wouldn't even consider a camera without one.  Now I'm wondering if I've been doing something I abhor - rejecting a tool without first giving it a trial.  I've avoided it on the assumption it would use more battery than the viewfinder's display.

I see people holding their cameras at arms length, and I suspect that both tiring and less stable.  I'm not sure why; it doesn't seem necessary but I have literally never tried to use the screen except to set menu options.

Any opinions, suggestions, comments pro or con?  "Please and thank you!"

Some of the DSLRs & higher-end bridge cameras have a function that allows you to better focus on small details using the back-of-camera LCD screen  However I have found this process really cumbersome, and not particularly helpful detrimental when photographing live birds.  

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I always use the LCD screen on my point-and-shoots.  There's no way I could zoom in and keep the bird in the frame while looking through the viewfinder.  And besides, the quality of the EVF on my point-and-shoot is poor.

For me:

Point-and-shoot -- LCD with the camera strap pulled against my neck and elbows underneath and against my body for stability

DSLR -- viewfinder for normal shooting; occasionally LCD tilted for low angles

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I use the viewfinder regardless of the camera I am using. Holding a camera at arms length is not only tiring, it is far from being stable. Now as far as focusing goes, the LCD or live view on a DSLR is suppose to have more accurate focus capabilities than using the viewfinder, I think that applies to P&S cameras too. Comparing live view shots to viewfinder shots is one method to help determine if you have focusing issues with your camera or lens.

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13 hours ago, xpoetmarcr said:

Viewfinder, always.  I don't even use the LCD screen for 'chimping' after a shot.  Like others, l only use it for selecting menu settings.

I had to Google 'chimping'.  I don't review anything in the field; that time is too valuable to me.  Shoot like crazy and sort 'em out at home.  This is probably another indicator of my being more birder than photographer.

 

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I use the eye piece exclusively. This may change with the new one but I doubt it. Though I had a camera once that only had the screen I came to really dislike it. I do miss that camera sometimes though because it took the best bug photo of any camera I have had to date. Though I haven't had a chance to try out the new one on bugs. I do not like the screen because it takes longer to find the subject with it. Glare...can be an issue that is never a problem with the eye piece. Stabilization is easier using the eye piece. The screen on my old camera stopped working a couple of years ago and I did not miss it except on the rare occasion I would want to look at photo right away. 

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Huh...looks like BN #2 and I are the only ones who mainly use the LCD screens on our point-and-shoots... We've used our cameras like that for years and it became natural.  BN #2 has pretty much mastered the use of a screen (AND the slow autofocus and zoom) while photographing birds in flight.

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On 8/4/2021 at 12:57 PM, Charlie Spencer said:

My eyeglasses keep me from getting the most stable connection, but it's still better than I'd get holding the camera away from my face.

This is something I am going to have to get use to. My close up vision is not what it use to be and using the viewfinder these days it is difficult tell if my focus is good or not. I think it is, it is, I think it is, it isn't. I think it isn't it is, I think it isn't it isn't. Very challenging without glasses. With glasses it is just one more thing I'm trying to juggle while I bird. I have binoculars, my camera (which is now huge), my phone with the ebird app running, possibly a scope and now having to add glasses.🤪

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Clip said:

This is something I am going to have to get use to. My close up vision is not what it use to be and using the viewfinder these days it is difficult tell if my focus is good or not. I think it is, it is, I think it is, it isn't. I think it isn't it is, I think it isn't it isn't. Very challenging without glasses. With glasses it is just one more thing I'm trying to juggle while I bird. I have binoculars, my camera (which is now huge), my phone with the ebird app running, possibly a scope and now having to add glasses.🤪

Are you aware your viewfinder may have a diopter adjustment, similar to binoculars?   Look near it for a small wheel that adjusts the focus of the viewfinder itself.  That may help when using your glasses.  Or depending on model, it may be a software adjustment in the settings; check the manual.

I didn't take up photographing birds until I was already wearing glasses full time.  I'd prefer to use my camera and binos without my glasses but then it's impossible for me to see eBird on my phone.  If that's the trade-off, I'll stick with the spectacles, thank you very much.

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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47 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

That may help when using your glasses

Will it help if I'm not using my glasses? I would rather not have to use them. As for the phone and using ebird I do okay. No the images on the phone aren't clear but I can general make out enough without glasses to be accurate. With the camera and being in focus or not, I struggle.

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iv noticed i get better results when I wear my glasses using  the camera ( but no polarized sunglasses that really screws with what  you see in the viewfinder iv noticed). with the viewfinder/ holding the camera out with a heavy lens to see the screen gets very tiering  very quickly.

 

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36 minutes ago, Johnd said:

no polarized sunglasses that really screws with what  you see in the viewfinder

Polarized glasses often distort phone screens too.

But seriously, does anyone wear sunglasses when birding?  :classic_blink:  I've always assumed it would cause problems perceiving a bird's colors accurately.  And with prescription glasses, shades add another layer between my eyes and the camera / binos.

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I do. it's bright out there sometimes. they do reduce the glare from reflected water and other surfaces where you can see movement more clearly. if im in a forested area i usually just keep the clear lenses on.

both my clear and sunglasses have prescription lenses in them. i switch to the clear to take photos, but with bino's i don't wear the glasses since the binos correct my vison easier then the camera focus does. I know it sounds like i switch combos a lot but i guess I'm used to it.

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Johnd said:

I know it sounds like i switch combos

That drives me nuts.  I'd love to leave my glasses in my pocket (or in the car), and I can use the camera and binos without them.  But then I go to enter somethiing in eBird and I can't distinguish letter on the phone's keyboard, or read the results.  I pull the glasses out, get fingerprints on them, enter the bird, forget to put them back in my pocket, etc.  I'm better off leaving them on and getting over it.

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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I actually need them for distance vision myself. and it seems to help a lot with the focusing thru the view finder when i wear them. usually wear the clear and have the sunglasses hooked to my shirt for more open/water areas

 

 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Seanbirds said:

You far-sighted?

I've never been sure what that means, so I'll decline to answer.  I can tell you that my once-perfect vision has gradually declined as I've aged, as most people's does.  I think I started wearing glasses in my mid-40s, give or take a couple of years.  Currently my distance vision is better than my close vision, but neither is what it used to be.

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On 8/12/2021 at 1:02 PM, Charlie Spencer said:

I've never been sure what that means, so I'll decline to answer.  I can tell you that my once-perfect vision has gradually declined as I've aged, as most people's does.  I think I started wearing glasses in my mid-40s, give or take a couple of years.  Currently my distance vision is better than my close vision, but neither is what it used to be.

I use to have better than 20/20. But, I'm in the same boat with my close up vision going bad. My distance vision still seems about the same but it will probably decline too. My close up vision also started going mid-40s which was awhile ago and I'm still adapting to the change. Kind of still in denial I guess.

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