Is Nikon Coolpix P950 worthy for spotting aircraft flying and landing?

I have a camera with Tamron 300mm lens but the lens cannot capture pictures of aircraft flying clearly beyond the focal length. Therefore, I bought the portable Canon PowerShot SX70HS at discount price of S$837. However on the fifth day of usage, this bridge camera blacked out suddenly while I was trying to delete a few shots that I took with the camera. I did not drop it nor wet it. It just blacked out suddenly without warning. I do not know what went wrong after sending it for warranty repair. The serviceman said he is waiting for spare parts for this Canon PowerShot.

As I do not want to pay for a new Canon PowerShot SX70HS if there were no spare parts for the faulty camera, I am considering whether to buy Nikon Coolpix P950, said to be the best bridge camera in the market.

Can anyone please advise me whether this camera is suitable for shooting pictures of A320/A321neo aircraft flying and landing at Suvarnabhumi at a faraway distance from me under condition of heat haze? Will the image shot using Nikon Coolpix P950 be clear? Suvarnabhumi airport is near Bangkok.

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Hello, I believe that this should be put under a different topic either under the photos and video area or possibly under real world aviation.

No. Having more range isn’t going to make pictures better. My advice would be to invest in a DSLR camera and keep the 300mm lens. Also actually going to the airport would help too.

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While the P950 is a good camera with fantastic zoom capabilities, I would agree with @Altaria55 that you’re probably better just getting a DSLR and going to the airport. The follow image sums up why:

image

The sensor in most bridge cameras is tiny, and for the price of that camera here (in the states), you could get a decent APS-C body (it’s also only 16.0 MP which for the price that it sells for is atrocious). Your Tamron is only 450mm equivalent on an APS-C while the P950 is almost 2000mm equivalent but I would argue that if you need more than 450mm equivalent to do full-aircraft shots you’re likely too far anyways. You can fight distance with zoom, but you can’t fight haze with zoom.

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I have Sony Alpha 6100 and Tamron 300mm lens but the lens cannot capture images of faraway aircraft flying clearly. When using Canon PowerShot SX70HS, I can’t view the airline name clearly on some aircraft in flight from the airport viewing gallery.

If a 300mm on a crop sensor can’t capture images clearly then you’re just too far. BKK has many spotting places where the focal length is less than 200mm. Not a good idea to fight with distance, you’ll always lose.

So, where do you suggest I go to shoot pictures of aircraft flying and landing in Suvarnabhumi on 8 January 2024 where focal length is less than 200mm? I already book Miracle Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel for access to the rooftop and Siam Mandarina Hotel but the focal length at these hotels require at least 300 mm for larger aircraft and more than 300 mm of focal length for smaller aircraft.

Which DSLR camera matches with Tamron 300mm lens?

How is haze related to zoom?

Which spotting places near Suvarnabhumi do you suggest I go that are less than 200mm in focal length?

It is a bad experience doing aircraft-spotting on the viewing gallery of Suvarnabhumi Airport. The windows are dirty. So I am asking where to shoot pictures of aircraft landing in Suvarnabhumi on 8 January 2024. It is illegal to stand and shoot pictures of aircraft on Suvarnabhumi 3 Road outside the gas station areas.

What is APS-C body and which model to match with Tamron 300mm lens? I am owning Sony Alpha 6100 (mirrorless camera) yet the images shot may not be better than Sony RX100 VII (200mm focal length) in quality.

If you’re running Sony E-Mount already you could consider upgrading to something like an A6500, but honestly it’s probably good enough as is.

If you need more zoom, then you’re standing further from the plane. That gives heat haze, smog, and many other optical reductions more of a chance to build up.

See above

There is really no need to ask this three times within the span of 15 minutes

An APS-C body is a camera that contains an APS-C (or “crop”) sensor. Your A6100 is one such example. If you have the Tamron 70-300 RXD I would say your current combo will take better photos than the RX100 VII, especially at range. As mentioned above, you could upgrade to the more advanced A6500 but the A6100 is perfectly fine as a camera.

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The aircraft-spotting page on Spotterguide mentions spotting locations are faraway from the aircraft subjects at BKK. During winter, very hard to see aircraft flying past Suvarnabhumi 2 Road and land. All land past faraway from Miracle Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel and Siam Mandarina Hotel. Need 400mm and above lens to spot A320 and small aircraft landing at that direction. So my question is the budget Nikon Coolpix P950 with the required zoom reliable to capture clear shots of aircraft flying and landing at that direction? I cannot pay S$1800 and above for a 400mm lens or Alpha A5000 due to budget constraint.
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Spots 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, and 15 are well within the capability of your lens, and every other spot you can crop in. Miracle is only 1 km from the runway, which is 100% a doable shot for a side-on with a 300mm on crop sensor (I’ll attach a photo later for reference). If it’s too blurry from that range you need to look at your settings and if it’s too hazy then having more zoom won’t help.

Range: 2 km

Range: 1.3 km

Range: 1 km

These are all possible shots, and I only have 250mm crop sensor equivalent while you have 300mm and we have the same MP (24).

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If you want to spot at BKK, some guy named hassakorn spotter on instagram can probably help. His photos are really nice. I believe he is here on IFC but I forgot his username specifically

So buying bridge camera or 400mm lens will not help in cases of heat haze and fog? Many spots mentioned for BKK on Spotterguide do not work for 200mm lens during winter as arrivals these days in winter descend on the runway 1 km from Miracle focal length 300mm to 500mm. Has anyone ever to gone to Soi King Kaew 14/1 to carry out aircraft-spotting? Is the plane flying at a low level there?

No, buying a longer lens cannot combat the elements.

Which is a totally doable shot unless you have really, really shaky hands or refuse to edit.

Unfortunately I’ve never been to BKK so I can’t speak to that spot.

I bought the Canon PowerShot SX70HS the most portable bridge camera but did not expect it to black out suddenly on the fifth day of usage. This camera allows me to zoom to more than 200mm but the screen does not tell me exactly at which focal length I am at after 200mm. I tried to use P950 which shows me exactly which focal length I am at. Nikon says P950 allows user to view subjects at faraway distances clearly. Does it include aircraft taking off from Suvarnabhumi during winter when it already flies at a very high level before flying past the air traffic control tower?