Basics: 2002, 2nd edition, softcover, 367 pages, 820+ color photos in 155 plates, 760 species, range maps
If you prefer a photographic format as your field guide over an illustrated one, this book would be the better choice over the few others available. All the Australian birds are covered with and abudnance of good photos. There are typically 5-6 photos per page. The text and range maps are across from the respective bird as in a normal field guide.
Very good photos are given for each bird. These photos depict the bird in good lighting, colors, and in a decent size. A majority of the birds are shown with only one photo. A second photo sometimes shows the female. Just like other photo guides, this one-photo limitation does not allow you to see and compare the many other plumages of the females, ages, season variations, and subspecies.
The text is a standard one-paragraph outline that focuses mainly on identification. These descriptions do not compare or mention similar species. A few lines are also given on voice, habitat, and status.
The range of each bird is shown on the same all-Australia map, which does not contain the boundaries of the various states. This creates a generalized view of the bird's distribution, especially for those species with limited ranges. An outline of only Tasmania is offered for those birds endemic to the island.
I found this book to be very useful to familiarize myself with the Australian birds before venturing out. However, for in-the-field use, I left this at home (in the car, actually) and carried only one of the exceptional illustrated guides available.
I've listed several related books below...
1) Birds of Australia, 7th ed. by Simpson/Day
2) Field Guide to Australian Birds by Morcombe
3) The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia, 7th ed. by Pizzey
4) The Slater Field Guide to Australian Birds: revised and updated by Slater
5) Complete Book of Australian Birds by Reader's Digest
6) Australian Birds : A Concise Photographic Field Guide by Trounson
7) Birds of Australia by Macdonald
8) A Photographic Guide to Birds of Australia by Rowland
9) Birds in the Australian high country by Frith