Digiscope Video of 243 WSSM Shooting a Milk Jug at 311 Yards

Model 1885, 243 WSSM ready to shoot milk jug and video with digiscope setup. Sony W7, Bushnell sentry digiscope setup

While camping this past week I setup my Sony W7 digital camera on my Bushnell Sentry spotting scope to take some video of a milk jug that I placed on some rope tied between two trees at 311 yards. Even with the low quality of video, that this camera shoots, you can clearly see the vapor trail of the bullet.

I was shooting my 243 WSSM Winchester Model 1885 with 55g Ballistic Tip factory load bullets. These bullets have a muzzle velocity of 4240 fps from this rifle. I was shooting from a sitting position using my Stoney Point Steady Stix with a tripod and my digiscope to the right of me.

This inexpensive digiscope setup has worked pretty good for me for several years. However my camera has now developed some internal floaters that place a couple of blurry spots on the photos and video I take with the camera zoomed.

With my camera now having issues I have been looking for a better camera/digiscoping solution. I think I've found it in the new breed of digital point and shoot cameras, cameras like the Nikon P100, Olympus SP-800UZ, Fujifilm Finepix HS10, or Pentax X90. These are point and shoot cameras with very high optical zooms. These cameras also offer high resolution still images along with good to excellent video qualities depending on the camera. With a camera like one of these there is no need for a digiscope setup, just place the camera in a steady tripod and take video and still images at amazing distances.  

Right now I'm leaning toward the Fujifilm or Nikon cameras as they both take high resolution 1080p video. The Fujifilm camera takes AA batteries and I think that is a huge plus but the Nikon I think might take a little better quality of images... maybe. I need to find some money somewhere and get one.

Update Nov. 8th 2010: I finally bit the bullet and ordered a camera from my favorite computer/gadget website newegg.com. I went over and over the specs, reviews etc and felt that the FujiFilm FinePix HS10 was the best camera for me. It was hard for me to chose this camera over the Nikon P100. I'm looking forward to getting this camera in the field to see what it can do. Here are some of the different features that made me chose the HS10 over the P100:

  • It takes AA batteries
  • It can take Raw images. This will be handy for taking photos that Browning (my day job) may want to use.
  • It has a 30x zoom compared to a 26x zoom
  • It has a manual zoom. Motor driven zooms mean one more thing to chew up battery and on more thing that might break.
  • It has a standard 58mm threaded lens, thus allowing for filters and teleconverters to be threaded on the front. The manual zoom also allows for teleconverters to be placed on the lens without a motor to get messed up trying to move the lens with a teleconverter attached. See my 51X Ultra Super Zoom FujiFilm HS10, HS20EXR and Sony VCL-DH1758 Teleconverter entry for more info on teleconverters.

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