Posts

Phone Skope Digiscoping Tips – Digiscoping with Binoculars Part 1

Folks often think that digiscoping can only be done with a spotting scope, but you can also digiscope with binoculars! I like to call this “digibinning.” Digibinning is super easy to do with your smartphone using a Phone Skope Adapter. All of our kits are two-piece, a phone-specific case and a optic adapter, which is either optic-specific or universal. In the video below, Cheston shows you how to hook a phone up to a pair of Vortex Viper binoculars using the Phone Skope iPhone 6 Plus Phone Case and U-1 Mini Universal Optic Adapter. This setup is extremely easy to use in the field and takes seconds to attach to binoculars.

How does the system work?

Here are the steps you should take to successfully take pictures through your binoculars with your phone.

  1. Put your phone into the Phone Skope Phone-specific Phone Case
  2. Adjust the diameter of the U-1 Mini Universal Optic Adapter to the size of your binocular eyecup
  3. Lock the U-1 Mini Universal Optic Adapter into the Phone Skope Phone Case
  4. Twist the eyecup out on the binocular
  5. Slide the system over the eyecup
  6. Start taking pictures or video

What can you digiscope through binoculars?

Anything! Anything you see through your binoculars can be captured on your phone by using a Phone Skope Adapter. The Phone Skope makes it easy to take pictures through binoculars by centering the phone camera lens on the optic.

Where can I buy one?

You can purchase a Phone Skope through our online store or at a dealer near you. Please see our Dealer Locator and we urge you to call a dealer first to see if they have the items you need in stock.

Where can I share my photos?

Share your pictures and videos with us on social media with the tag #phoneskope! You can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube!

Identify birds online with the new Merlin Bird ID app

Black-chinned Hummingbird in Blythe, CA. Digiscoped with a iPhone 4s + Celestron Regal M2 80ED & Phone Skope Adapter. iPhone photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Black-chinned Hummingbird in Blythe, CA. Digiscoped with a iPhone 4s + Celestron Regal M2 80ED & Phone Skope Adapter. iPhone photo by Tim Schreckengost.

A few days ago, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology launched a new website that should assist folks with the identification of 400 North American birds – Merlin – Photo ID. Using the website to identify a bird is surprisingly easy and is a very simple process. In this tutorial, I’ll give a brief overview with screenshots on how to use the new Merlin – Photo ID site to identify birds.

1. Go to the Merlin – Photo ID website and click “Start Bird Photo ID.”

Merlin - Photo ID

2. Upload a Photo. I uploaded the photo at the beginning of this post.

Select a Photo

Confirm Photo

3. Enter the location of where the photo was taken. My photo was taken in Blythe, California.

Where was this photo taken?

4. Enter the date the photo was taken. I didn’t know the date, so I just clicked “Don’t Know.”

When was this photo taken?

5. Go through a series of steps to pin-point features on the bird – draw a box around the bird, click on the bill tip, click on the eye, click on the tail tip, and make any necessary adjustments.

Final Step

6. See if the site identified the bird correctly! In my case, it did on the first try.

Did the site identify the bird correctly?

All-in-all I think this tool will be useful to birders of all skill levels. It’s easy to navigate and seems very user-friendly, even though it is still in the beta stage. Let us know if you get a chance to test it out and if you would like to see more tutorials like this in the future.