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Seacam USA #1870
October 31, 2007 - 1:38PM
Harald Hordosch and Stephen Frink were at the Seacam (USA) booth showing some particularly innovative products, including a remote control system complete with remote monitor, pole (with shutter trigger), tripod, and monitor glasses. Equally as exciting was a new strobe, the SeaFlash 150.
There are several parts to the Seacam remote control system:
- Remote Monitor - This is the brain of the system, and includes bulkheads for the electronic eyepiece connection (required for a live view through the viewfinder), trigger input, and monitor glasses output. The monitor features a removeable battery, which provides 4 hours of LCD and remote use (6 hours, if only the glasses are used). The battery compartment is sealed, and the entire unit is completely waterproof, and is designed to be used topside or underwater. The monitor unit also is fitted with a ball mount, which is designed to be attached to a ball located on the new pole design.
- Pole - The new pole features a ball at the bottom end for mounting a camera, a ball near the top for mounting the remote monitor, and a button at the top, which can be used to trigger the camera's shutter (there's also a bulkhead, which needs to be wired to the camera or to the monitor).
- Monitor Glasses - The monitor glasses make you look like Geordi, but that's OK. Photographers and videographers have been rigging lipstick cameras and monitor glasses together for years, but Seacam's solution is really slick.
- Electronic Viewfinder - The electronic viewfinder replaces the viewfinder in any Seacam and feeds video out to the remote monitor. A shutter release cable is chained off of the bottom of the viewfinder and attaches to the remote bulkhead on the side of the Seacam housing.
- Tripod - The tripod is simple, but looks strong enough to hold a complete Seacam rig (heavy!). The legs don't telescope out that far, so it's definitely for use close to the ocean floor.
This is the first time I know of that a manufacturer has designed a complete remote photography solution, and I expect to see it change the way a lot of people shoot underwater. Attached to the pole, the entire remote system would be really heavy, which might be a problem for some.
Harald emphasized that the remote control system is flexible, and that Seacam will work with any photographer who requires a custom solution.
SeaFlash 150 Digital
Seacam has designed a compact strobe that is both light, powerful, and wide. The SeaFlash 150 Digital has the same operation as the SeaFlash 250, but is significantly shorter and lighter, and features a removable battery -- essential for folks flying through the USA these days.
Other features of the SeaFlash 150 Digital:
- removable battery
- tiny charger (battery contains all charging electronics)
- can be charged off a car battery
- double o-ring seal
- underwater guide number of 19
- LED modeling light, 2 powers, lasts 6 or 12 hours
- E-TTL and iTTL support (specified when ordered)
- 200 flashes @ full power
- 1.2 second recycle @ full power
- 13 power settings in 1/2 stop increments
buoyantnegative in fresh water (70g in seawater)
- Available end of January
I am probably biased because I've been waiting for this strobe for years now, but... is that not awesome? I'm ordering 2.
Stephen Frink sent in another update about the strobe:
Also, he will have a diffuser, probably designed to attach a the O-ring that holds the snoot, and cut out in the center for the model light. Also, the same kind of O-ring at the rear so when you take off the snoot for wide angle you'll have an easy place to store it.
Sand stick, telescoping strobe arms
Lost in the excitement of the new strobe and remote system were a sand spike with a ball on top of it, and a telescoping strobe arm. In typical Seacam fashion, they were both designed to be nice to hold, although the one with the sharp tip might tempt you to stab the nearest annoying diver.
Canon 1D/1Ds Mk III housing
Harald told me that the housing for the new Canon Mk 3 cameras is almost done. Steve's friend, David Carlson, had a 1Ds Mk III on hand (he works for Canon), which I fondled the camera for awhile. It was awesome.
Another Canon rep is going to bring Canon's new 14mm II lens over on Thursday for Steve to test out. I'm looking forward to seeing the results.