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Panasonic GX1 in a Nauticam housing


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#1 davephdv

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 04:28 PM

Shot the Panasonic GX1 in a Nauticam housing last weekend at San Clemente island.

Due to a cold only shot one day. Used only the 7-14 lens, one DS 161 strobe, and manual exposure. Shutter speeds varied from 1/30th of a second to 1/160th.

Minor PS adjustments and a few were cropped.

Camera and housing worked really well. Didn't even notice the difference between this rig and using my D300s in a Subal rig.

Nauticam housing very light weight, compact and extremely easy to set up. Note, I did shoot this rig two weeks ago and had to send it back to have the shutter release adjusted. I was not able to test the macro lens due to a cold.


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SFanKlpGarb828.jpg

Attached Images

  • GarbSeaFnKlpSm824.jpg
  • CalicoSardineSclSm671.jpg

Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#2 derway

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 04:55 PM

Good fun Dave. Great to see nice results from the m43 crew. I'm waiting for the oly em5 since I want to use it as primary land camera as well as underwater, and the EVF and photographers tools suit me better.
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#3 davephdv

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 05:53 PM

I avoided reading Alex's excellent review on the Olympus until after I had a chance to shoot my GX1 UW and a chance to hold and shoot the Olympus.

I also haven't spent much time reading reviews on the Olympus. It seems to me that there is almost too much of a fanboy frenzy on the Olympus. The GX1 seems as equally as good a camera.

IQ 800 ISO and under (where I shoot), no real difference. AF, by my brief shooting of the Olympus compared to the GX1, the GX1 has better AF. If it does or not is in material, as the GX1 focuses great underwater. I didn't notice any different from my Nikon D300s.

The Olympus is water sealed and supports a better video format.

The EVF is a hugh, I repeat hugh advantage of the GX1 over the Olympus. The optional viewfinder for the GX1 is set high where it is very usable. Also it hinges up and down, a tremendous feature. The Olympus EVF by comparison is squeezed on top of the camera. If you have used the GX1 you would say it is much easier to use. I can't imagine how you would see through that thing in a housing and through a mask.

The only way it would be of value would be by adding an expensive add on view finder. Here is a link to the one that Nauticam made for the NEX7

Add on viewfinder

The LCD on my Nauticam was very easy to use and frame photos. If it becomes a problem is very bright and shallow water then use one of these (79$)

Hoodman.jpg

It covers the LCD almost perfectly. I just need to get some velcro that will attach to the housing. Hopefully future housings will incorporate a shade on the top part. I have seen many inexpensive housing with this feature.

The GX1 will flash synch down to 1/20 a second and up to 1/160th a second.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#4 derway

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 10:41 PM

For me the ability to use A mode, on the Oly, and limit the shutter speed, to a user configurable setting is huge. The pany A mode slowest SS with flash on, is 1/60.

On the olys we can set it to 1/100 or 1/125. And they sink up to 1/250.

The jpg colors are very different. So good for land photo too.

Edited by derway, 04 June 2012 - 10:41 PM.

Don Erway
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nikon n90s/ikelite housing/twin SS-200 canon G2/ikelite/DS-50/optical TTL slave
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#5 davephdv

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 11:50 PM

Incorrect about the slowest shutter speed with the GX1. I've got flash photos with the shutter speed at 1/30th and have set it to A and shot flash photos as slow as 1/20th. I does top out at 1/160th. I would like 1/250th for sea lions.


I suspect the 8 mm fisheye would be an excellent choice for either system.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#6 NWDiver

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 05:21 AM

Both are excellent cameras an interesting "note" http://www.43rumors....m-the-gx1-size/

#7 derway

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:25 AM

Incorrect about the slowest shutter speed with the GX1. I've got flash photos with the shutter speed at 1/30th and have set it to A and shot flash photos as slow as 1/20th. I does top out at 1/160th. I would like 1/250th for sea lions.


I suspect the 8 mm fisheye would be an excellent choice for either system.


Hi Dave.

What I am saying is I want to us A mode, and limit it to FASTER than 1/60th, like 1/100. I find too much subject blur, when fish flee, at 1/60 second.

Since the pany cameras do not allow the user to set the shutter speed limit, in A mode, with flash, I find their A mode unusable.
Don Erway
http://picasaweb.google.com/onederway/
http://www.pbase.com/derway

nikon n90s/ikelite housing/twin SS-200 canon G2/ikelite/DS-50/optical TTL slave
sony V3/ikelite/DS-51/Heinrich DA2 slave

#8 davephdv

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:43 AM

Hi Dave.

What I am saying is I want to us A mode, and limit it to FASTER than 1/60th, like 1/100. I find too much subject blur, when fish flee, at 1/60 second.

Since the pany cameras do not allow the user to set the shutter speed limit, in A mode, with flash, I find their A mode unusable.



No, I just fired my GX1 in A with a shutter speed of 1/160th, with full flash synch.

1/160th is the maximum shutter speed I can attain in Aperture mode while synch with the flash
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#9 davephdv

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:53 AM

I normally shoot everything in manual. However I tested the range of flash synch shutter speeds in Aperture priority mode.

The flash will fire and synch with the camera with shutter speeds up to 1/160th of a second while in Aperture mode.

In manual mode you can synch the flash with shutter speeds of less than 1/20 of a second. The slowest shutter speed I could get the camera to in A was 1/50.


I normally shoot M (manual). I use Aperture priority (A) if I want to control depth of focus and I'm having trouble determining which shutter speed to use. I use shutter priority (S) when I'm shooting fast moving subjects.

With the camera in my hands the GX1 will flash synch in A and S from 1/60th a second to 1/160th a second. I would like to be able to flash synch in S at 1/250th a second. For shooting fast moving sea lions. In M the camera will synch with the flash from 1 second to 1/160th a second.

So the only real limitation is the max shutter speed synch of 1/160 a second, in any mode.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#10 DiveMasterDewey

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 11:44 AM

Here's a coincidence. Yesterday I dipped in the ocean for the first time with Nauticam and GX1.
I used 8mm lens, and 4.33" acrylic port.
Totally manual.
72 feet deep.

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  • Boynton_Lionfish_1.jpg

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#11 derway

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 11:57 AM

Every nikon and canon and sony DSLR, and oly micro 4/3 camera, has a user setting, so that we can set the slowest shutter speed, in A mode, with flash on.

Most cameras default to 1/60. The pany's have no user setting for this. All the competing cameras do have this user setting.

This mean, we can prevent motion blur, if we find 1/60 too slow. We can bump the slowest shutter up to 1/100. So then in A mode, it will use from 1/100 up to the max shutter speed.

I generally do find 1/60th too slow, for fish that try to get out of the way. They end up blurred.
Don Erway
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http://www.pbase.com/derway

nikon n90s/ikelite housing/twin SS-200 canon G2/ikelite/DS-50/optical TTL slave
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#12 kmo_underwater

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 03:59 PM

Nice photos, looks like a great setup. I don't see any motion blur :)

BTW could you not use the high ISO capability of these cameras to achieve a faster shutter speed in A mode if that is what you were after?

#13 davephdv

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 04:27 PM

I don't like to shoot above ISO 800.

I think the camera and housing are highly capable of achieving excellent photos, though I haven't tried to shoot fast moving subjects with it.

I shoot manual so the entire argument about what the camera can do in the A mode is irrelevant to me.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

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#14 DiveMasterDewey

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 06:35 AM

I shoot manual so the entire argument about what the camera can do in the A mode is irrelevant to me.



Ditto.

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#15 derway

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 07:24 AM

Dave, I was just giving you my reasons for waiting for the OMD. Obviously the A mode is irrelevant to you, that was clear from the start.
Don Erway
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#16 davephdv

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 05:04 PM

No problem.

I was just trying to get out that this (Panasonic GX1) is a really good camera to take underwater and that there are good housings available for it now.

The more information people have the better the choices they can make.

What I would take away from this thread is that the max flash synch speed with the GX1 is 1/160th. If you want a higher synch speed then you need a different camera.

The comments on the A mode were just to point out I don't see this as an issue on if one should buy the camera or not. I think shooting in manual is much more important than in A mode.

As an aside, A mode with a limit to the shutter speed sounds like it is really P mode with program shift, not a true A mode.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

Life is a beach and then you dive.

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#17 derway

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 09:08 PM

True A mode goes as long on shutter speed as needed, to get ambient exposure correct.

But every camera made, has a special provision when using A mode with flash enabled. They limit the longest it will leave the shutter open, figuring that getting enough light from the flash will make up for loss in ambient exposure.

Typically this longest shutter time is 1/30 or 1/60, or something like that. In many cameras other than the panasonics, one can set that longest exposure to a faster time, to limit motion blur.

Most cameras also allow a slow flash synch, or long shutter speed in A mode with flash on, if you are using it on a tripod.

Anyway, bottom line is on the omd you can use flash synch to 1/250.

The oly pens and omd also allow one to use M mode with auto ISO.

I mean if we trust metering at all, this gives us the most control of the factors making the image qualities we want - f-stop for flash exposure, and DOF and finding the sweet spot in a lens, port, dome system, and controlling motion freezing or blur, while letting the camera adjust the ISO ONLY to precisely pick the sensitivity, that gives the proper metered exposure.
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#18 Phil Rudin

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 07:24 AM

For wide angle the Panasonic 8mm fisheye and 7-14mm zoom are two great choices. The Panasonic GX1 and Olympus E-M5 also offer two great options. One of the big differences is your preference for using the LCD or a viewfinder and cost.

I think Nauticam made a wise choice lowering the price point for the GX1 from the $1650.00 range for housings like the PENS to the $1200.00 price point which is more in line with the cost of the camera. While a Nauticam housing for the E-M5 would I expect include an option for mounting the excellent Nauticam 45 and 180 accessory view finders but at a higher cost.

For someone coming from (45years) an optical viewfinder to the EVF/OLED viewfinders I have found the upsides to at least equal the downsides of optical viewfinders in the sub 35mm sensor range. Just one of those upsides is being able to see the image just taken in the viewfinder (with or without histogram and shooting info) without gaving to move your eye to the LCD screen. I have used the OLED of the NEX-7 with the Nauticam 45 degree finder and was able to see a great amount of detail.

While I am sure a full frame camera optical viewfinder with the same accessory finder renders an even better image in the viewfinder the upsides over APS-C are not that relevant once you have used the EVF a few times.

Phil Rudin

Edited by Phil Rudin, 07 June 2012 - 07:25 AM.


#19 Ryan

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 07:54 AM

Typically this longest shutter time is 1/30 or 1/60, or something like that. In many cameras other than the panasonics, one can set that longest exposure to a faster time, to limit motion blur.



Apologies if I missed it, but what minimum shutter speed would you like to choose?

#20 derway

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 08:22 AM

1/100 to avoid motion blur of subjects.
Don Erway
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