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Recommendations for Advancing My Photo Gear - Panasonic LX10

Panasonic LX10

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#1 ScubaTroy

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 10:38 AM

Hello, I am a diver with 3 years experience and 160 dives.   I typically dive in the Coral Triangle, with Indonesia and the Solomons being my top dive destinations.  I LOVE underwater still and video work.   My current gear is a GoPro Hero 6 and Olympus TG4.   I am looking to upgrade my gear and ideally I would like to have one set up for still and video.   I know that having a large set up is not for me.   After doing considerable research I am considering the Panasonic LX10 to replace the TG4 and Hero6.    I am thinking about the Nauticam housing and then purchasing a macro and wide angle lens to mount to the housing.   My question for you experts is whether the LX10 with the two additional lenses will give me that much better photos/video to justify the cost.   I am also interested in any recommendations for strobes for the LX10 and whether it is advisable to purchase the vacuum systems (which almost cost as much as the camera!).    I appreciate your thoughts, insights, and recommendations.   

 

Troy



#2 hyp

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 11:32 AM

You can get the Leak Sentinel Vacuum System v4 for 200€. Should be cheaper then the camera and gives great peace of mind.



#3 ChrisRoss

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 11:00 PM

I assume you saw the backscatter review on The LX10 naming it best compact.  I've seen the difference between TG4 (my daughter has one ) and my m43 EM-1 II, they are nearly up there with SLR and the 1" sensor in the Panasonic is a pretty close match in quality and I think if you value compactness it's going to be as good as you can get and definitely a good improvement over the TG-4. 

 

I'm not sure which vacuum system you are looking at but the Nauticam LX-10 housing has the electronics and you just need to add a Nauticam vacuum valve at $US220,  which compared to $US700 for the camera seems like pretty good insurance.  For me totally worth for the peace of mind to see that little green light. 

 

As far as strobes go, again if you are valuing a compact rig, then the little S-2000 strobes from INON should serve you well.  with the smaller sensor you don't need to stop down so much for DOF except maybe with high power macro lenses.  Keeping it at f5.6 gives you equivalent DOF to just under f16 on a DSLR.  This means it is less demanding on flashes as you don't need as much strobe power.   I would suggest you should get a tray of some form for better stability if you are going to do much video.



#4 brousseb

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 03:20 AM

I have the LX10/Nauticam+vacuum valve (by nauticam, bought as a package).  I don't do stills, but for video I'd say it's almost perfect (for a smallish package).  Full setup includes 2 video lights, arms clamps, wet wide angle lens and it comes in at about 8-9 pounds and easily fits into a small backpack.  The only thing I'm knocking this camera for is the 4k video stabilization which could be better.  I did some testing with stabilization in post and it seems to resolve most of these issues, but it is an extra step.  I did add some longer arms and float stix to help stabilize the footage in water as well.  It seems to be fine on land though, only underwater, maybe it was the effect of the current/surge which was very strong.

 

I work around the focus issues by pre-focussing using the back button focus lock and it seems to be fine in most situations (especially around f5.6).

 

Underwater white balance is really good down to 50-60 feet, which lets me get away with no filter or lights within that range.

 

Here is a video I put together, it's a combination of 1080 (slowed to 50%), 4k and high frame rate (120 fps).  It shows the manual white balance ability of this camera, most footage is between 35-90 feet, no filter, no lights. 

 

https://youtu.be/F-oK0-Yw3iA


Edited by brousseb, 20 September 2018 - 03:26 AM.


#5 Architeuthis

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 03:23 AM

Hi Scuba Troy,

 

I cannot say much on the camera, but the LX-10 appears to me to be very high quality...

 

I can provide two notes about using a vacuum system:

 

1.: I have since two years a Nauticam housing (Oly EM-5MII) with vacuum system and took it underwater approx. 150x times so far. In two cases I experienced that the green ligth turned to yellow (once even red) between assembly in the apartment and the actual diving (maybe 1h inbetween). This prevented me already 2x from taking a not perfectly sealed rig into the water (this were the only two dives that I did without camera since I have it). Often I have expensive lenses (maximum is Canon 8-15mm FE, 1.4x Teleconverter plus Metabones adapter (with camera approx 2500 Euros are endangered)) - So the vacuum system was already now worth the money...

 

2.: My wife had a Olympus EPL-6 with Oly housing (no vacuum system) since approx. 4 years. Two week ago she flooded the housing. The is looking now for a used EPL-6 (or EPL-5) that will cost 2nd hand approx. 300 Euros. Also here a vaccum system would have prevented the flood - she closed the door in almost dark (nigthdive) and the O-Ring was not completely in place. Also here nice to have...

 

Wolfgang


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#6 ScubaTroy

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 10:02 AM

Thanks to all for your thoughtful and helpful insights and suggestions.   Much appreciated!   

 

Sting Ray - you are correct in that I saw the BackScatter review.   The review spoke to all the features that I am looking for in my next set up.  Also, thanks for the strobe recommendations.  You can't beat their size and price point is good.  

 

SeaNettle - wow, what great footage with NO lights.   Very impressive for sure.  

 

Wolf Eel - you sold me!   I am definitely getting a vacuum system.   :)

 

Any suggestions for wide angle and macro lenses?  I tend to purchase at the middle range versus inexpensive or top of the line.     Finally, it seems like Nauticam is the best for housing.  Are there solid housing products that are a step below - maybe middle of the road?

 

Thanks,  Troy



#7 brousseb

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 02:25 PM

I think the only housing options for the LX10 are nauticam and Ikelite.

Im using the Inon UWL-h100 for wide angle and Im happy with it. It needs to be zoomed to 32mm for video and probably a little more for photo but gives roughly 100 degrees.

#8 ChrisRoss

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 08:30 PM

Any suggestions for wide angle and macro lenses?  I tend to purchase at the middle range versus inexpensive or top of the line.     Finally, it seems like Nauticam is the best for housing.  Are there solid housing products that are a step below - maybe middle of the road?

 

Thanks,  Troy

yep only Nauticam or ikelite.  I think it's no contest, the nauticam housings are great to use, Ikelite you can use them but it's a square box with a bunch of knobs sticking out of it. 

 

Chris



#9 sbonev

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Posted 25 September 2018 - 04:30 AM

Thanks to all for your thoughtful and helpful insights and suggestions.   Much appreciated!   
 
Sting Ray - you are correct in that I saw the BackScatter review.   The review spoke to all the features that I am looking for in my next set up.  Also, thanks for the strobe recommendations.  You can't beat their size and price point is good.  
 
SeaNettle - wow, what great footage with NO lights.   Very impressive for sure.  
 
Wolf Eel - you sold me!   I am definitely getting a vacuum system.   :)
 
Any suggestions for wide angle and macro lenses?  I tend to purchase at the middle range versus inexpensive or top of the line.     Finally, it seems like Nauticam is the best for housing.  Are there solid housing products that are a step below - maybe middle of the road?
 
Thanks,  Troy

I have that setup lx15 with nauticam housing and bayonet and inon ucl67 macro wet lense and looking to upgrade it with ucl67 165 on top for greater macro. Unfortunately didn't like how are the wide lenses mounted on the bayonet as they stay a bit away from the port, so you have to zoom... But I'm about to choose one soon hopefully. As for flashes I have a pair of retra, for me they do great job, and this is the most important from the whole rig, this sensor definitely would benefit from as much light as possible. Check my profile, I have shared some photos from the first trip with that setup, there is also one video, mostly from test footage nothing special.

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk

Edited by sbonev, 25 September 2018 - 04:31 AM.