Jump to content


Member Since 13 Feb 2016
Offline Last Active Today, 07:20 AM

#401618 Group Cluster Focus Points - Macro on Nikno

Posted by ChrisRoss on Yesterday, 09:57 PM

If you read the description GRP tends to go to the closest subject among the 4 sensors, but it will also be the one with most  contrast.  You have no control over what it picks and it may pick the wrong thing. 


The DOF is what it is regardless and all you do is pick what to focus on.   DOF at macro focal lengths is said to evenly distribute in front of and behind the focal point, so focusing on the front of your subject wastes DOF.  So best approach is to focus on the middle of the subject to give best chance of getting the DOF to fall in the right spot.  To do that you really need to use a single focus point.

#401388 Lighting without strobes?

Posted by ChrisRoss on 04 December 2018 - 06:24 PM

The problem with lights bright enough to be useful is that when you approach with them turned on a lot of creatures leave.  If you are concerned about costs you could always get two of the lower powered strobes, like the INON S-2000.  I think you'd find that lights bright enough to compete with a strobe would set you back more than a pair of strobes anyway.  In your case, the 15mm f2.8 (fisheye I assume?) you need quite wide coverage so you need quite a wide beam on your lights.

#398838 Panasonic 8-18mm, which dome?

Posted by ChrisRoss on 29 August 2018 - 08:43 PM

If you consult the port charts you can find the answer, the Zen chart I linked above and the Nauticam chart here:


In the Zen and Nauticam port charts the same extension is recommended for the Pany 12-35 and Oly 12-40 and Nauticam recommends the 7" dome for the 12-40 as well This implies that the 12-35 and 12-40 both have similar extension requirements so the 12-35mm should also be "OK" in the 7" dome. Both Zen and Mauticam recommend more extension for the 8-18mm, 25mm more is recommended by Zen and 28mm more by Nauticam.

The 7" Nauticam dome is a one size fits all solution which may or may not be optimal for any particular lens as the extension is already built into the port. Both the Zen and Nauticam glass domes offer an option where you can vary the amount of extension with the same dome. This is going to make the most difference at the widest end for any lens and is more likely to be an issue with the ultra wide (weitwinkel) lenses with like the 8-18 and 7-14.

#398224 Sony RX 100 mark III Vs Sony RX 100 Mark VI underwater setup

Posted by ChrisRoss on 08 August 2018 - 02:01 AM

No Worries Hermit Crab :)

#398223 Fewest N85 Ports Possible

Posted by ChrisRoss on 08 August 2018 - 01:56 AM

Add a 20mm extension and you can use the 60mm macro as well.  This is the port chart:for Zen N85:



#398188 Sony RX 100 mark III Vs Sony RX 100 Mark VI underwater setup

Posted by ChrisRoss on 06 August 2018 - 06:45 PM

I think you mean the Sony RX-100, but should also maybe look at the Canon G7X as it's a touch cheaper.  Have a look at this article to compare features, go down to advanced compacts.




Unfortunately the "best" camera has the smallest choice in housings, note also they are talking about the MkV Sony, the MkVI is much less suitable for UW work.Read this to see why:  http://www.uwphotographyguide.com/sony-rx100vi-camera-review so far only Nauticam have made a housing for it.  It's all a compromise really all have their pluses and minuses, for example a limitation on the Sony means white balance for UW video at depth does not work.  The Canon white balances well but no 4K etc.  For stills the macro on the G7X is better.  At this point your choice is going to be set by housing availability to a certain extent.  If you don't want to shell out for an aluminium housing then the Sony MkVI is out and the Panasonic you can only go with an Ikelite box.


Which housing are you looking to buy?, you're talking AUD, so presumably you are looking to buy out of Oz, which means your choices will be more limited.  Presumably it's the Fantasea housing which by all accounts is a good choice if you're on a budget and are looking at the Canon or the MkIv-V Sony's.


You also don't mention strobes, that's the single biggest thing to improve the quality of your UW shots.  Look at getting an INON S2000 strobe as well.

#398141 Surface Material or a little underwater Gear adaptable to a RX100 IV

Posted by ChrisRoss on 05 August 2018 - 04:15 PM


I hope you are well?
I received everything this afternoon
I wanted to ask a few questions because I have some areas of darkness to clear but also because certainly some people will follow the same path as me and may be left with the same questions, so try to help as much as many peoples helped on this forum.
So to start, it's impressive to receive everything and to unpack everything. There are a lot of elements, and the last time I felt that way was when I had to assemble my entire computer tower. To get out of it you have to read and follow the instructions in the manuals.
I bought :
fews accessories
Sony RX100 IV
FRX100 V Housing
Inon S-2000Strobe Set with flexarm https://www.uwcamera...weefine-flexarm( Inon S2000 strobe & Inon Z-adapter & Weefine Flexarm with grip & Inon optical cable )
1) I saw an option to make communicate the flash and the camera without the cable (Wireless connection) but I thought that my system was not compatible and I decided to use the cable. Am I right? If I'm wrong what are the differences between the 2 systems? (Wireless & Cable Connection).Cable is better, the other method can be hit and miss
2) In the pile of accessories there is an Inon Double hole Rubber Bush for optical fiber : Do i need to use that rather than one of the 2 holes in the front of the fantasea housing, to connect the cable? (I do not see the interest but maybe something escapes me)  You can connect two flashes to the one fibre port, but you also use it with a single cable.
3) I saw some documents that spoke of possible strobe overheating. All this is still not very clear to me. If I take one picture, wait until the strobe is charged and the red light comes on, and then I take another picture, and same again and again : in this case, I have a risk of overheating? I would have thought that the flash could go into protection automatically but I'm not 100% sure about this.  It is unlikely to be a problem in "normal" shooting, if you take 2-3 shots and move on.
4) I made a first try yesterday, I was very disappointed by the autonomy of the camera. I'd like to know about which variables I can act to change that :
- SteadyShot OFF I would turn this on
- Flash Compensation -3,0 IL (this point might be problematic no? Cause this might maybe impact the TTL measure, or am I totally wrong?- I hope so because this might be really problematic lol)  you turn flash compensation to -3 when you use the external flash in manual, it recycles faster and saves battery power,  For TTL you need to use normal flash compensation.
- AF not Continue yes continous AF can be a problem and not work well under water.
- lower the brightness of the screen- maybe not , you need it brighter to see in sunlight
- no NR  you should shoot in RAW so this is irrelevant, noise reduction is done during raw processing.  Pics are much easier to colour balance as well.
- any other advice?
Read thishttps://reefphoto.com/blogs/lighting/selecting-the-proper-settings-for-inon-strobes-1  and try shooting in manual you can adjust the power on land first to get in the ballpark - try 1/125 @ f4 ISO 100 and adjust flash output to get proper exposure on a subject about 300mm away.  Keep that setting and fine tune underwater.  You need to deactivate the ACC function with the  magnet for this to work. 
5) I'm not sure I understood exactly where to put the Silica gel inside the housing. Manual say that's the best is to insert on the left side of the camera between the 2 rubber shock absorber mounts. I was afraid that if I put a bag of silica gel in this place I could damage the camera zoom. Also I'm a bit paranoid about fog/steam/moisture inside the housing I think. 
Try it on the surface first - be aware you need to keep it away from the o-ring.  Also keep the silica gel sealed in zip lock bag or similar when not in use, it will quickly absorb moisture from the air and no longer be effective.  An alternative to this is to assemble the housing in an air conditioned room.  The humidity is lower and this means there is less moisture inside the housing.
I made some pictures to share all this in case people are interested to buy similar material, so that they know what to expect.
Some pictures:
Thanks in advance, have a beautiful underwater day!

sorry, I'm not able to successfully upload the pictures, will try again later : I do have error messages


#397431 How to find a leak ?

Posted by ChrisRoss on 16 July 2018 - 06:41 PM

The Vivid Sentinel isn't quite like that, Chris. There's a rubber/plasticky cover (under a screw dustcap) that you just nudge gently to one side to release the vacuum (f there's such a thing as releasing a vacuum). It's feasible that it might not re-seat properly (worth checking toni) but not very likely. The dustcap is the screw down part but that is only a dustcap and not part of the valve mechanism.

Ok, seems less likely but as you say worth checking.  A lot depends on how quickly the vacuum is lost.  If it is rapid it has to be something like an o-ring not installed correctly or failure of the non return mechanism in the vacuum valve.  I did a test once placing a hair across the main housing o-ring to see how long it took to be detected - it was not a rapid loss of vacuum.   So if the vacuum is rapidly lost then you are looking for something like an o-ring installed incorrectly - wrong spot or missing or something at least from my limited experience and testing.


BTW as I understand it the dust cap functions as a seal, if it has an o-ring that is the primary protection against leaking water in through the vacuum valve.

#397216 Carry and using a lempeh stick?

Posted by ChrisRoss on 09 July 2018 - 04:09 PM

with a weight integrated BCD I clip to the BCD D ring near the weight pocket and push it up into the weight pocket when I'm not using it.  Generally sees to stay there.

#397172 Is this a juvenile scorpion fish?

Posted by ChrisRoss on 08 July 2018 - 09:16 PM

It's definitely a scorpion fish, though I couldn't say for certain which species, maybe a barchin? I believe there is variability in colours/ptterns to better match the substrate where they live. Some of the species only reach max size of 6cm so this may not be a juvenile?

#396824 IKLITE DS-160 vs INON Z-330

Posted by ChrisRoss on 27 June 2018 - 06:07 AM

you need to change to sync cords with the ikelite or buy the fibre optic converters as well.  The sync cords are another thing to service.  No TTL with a non ikelite housing either as I understand it.  The INON uses AA NiMH batteries while the ikelite uses proprietary packs.  The ikelite has 90 deg coverage and needs diffuser to get to 100, while the Inon is 110 deg of cover without the diffuser.  The ikelite should provide longer battery life and is warmer strobe which has some advantage.  You will need a flash trigger on your D500, but sounds like you may already have that. Seems like it's mostly minuses for the Ikelite strobe on a non ikelite housing?

#396786 Oly OM system starting from scratch

Posted by ChrisRoss on 26 June 2018 - 06:45 AM

Old 4/3 port is any port on this chart which requires Underwater port adapter for e-series PAD Ep-08:




You don't want the PAD EP-08 it just shows which ports belong to the old 4/3 series.  You can still buy the Ep-04 port on that chart new but it's $999 plus an extension plus the Nauticam - 4/3 adapter.  The Zen N120 170mmm port is the same price so unless you find a bargain used one.....doesn't seem much point as you are not 100% sure on the extension required.


If you search the classifieds on here you'll see that both the Nauticam N120 180mm glass dome and Zen 170mm dome both come up for sale periodically.  If you wanted to find something cheaper you could maybe look at this port: 




you would hope that the same extensions used for the Zen port would apply but would need to confirm that.  It should be able to house anything that the Zen DP-170-N120 dome would house and you would need to add the appropriate N85-N120 adapter.

#396773 Oly OM system starting from scratch

Posted by ChrisRoss on 26 June 2018 - 12:15 AM

I've been shooting M4/3 underwater for a while now, and I'm happy to share some of my mistakes.  First off?  The 12-50.  The image quality isn't as good as you would expect after having to pay to port it, and that's coming from a guy with an Oly housing.  For what Nauticam wants to make the macro work, you're much better off starting with the 12-40- I wish I would have bought my second general purpose lens first, if that makes sense.  You can adapt the older 4/3 ports to Nauticam, which gives you some reasonably priced options. There's a flat port (lousy for wide angle, but great for closeups, especially since you can use a swing away diopter holder) and either the Olympus 170mm dome (very hard to find and expensive) or the Inon 170mm dome (less than 600 bucks, and it's glass).  I've found that shooting through the dome and cropping yields a better macro result than the 12-50 while still leaving you some ability to capture wide angle scenes.


The 60mm is great, but the Olympus 30mm gives it a good run for the money for underwater stuff and is now my macro choice because of it's flexibility and ease of use.  If you're shooting things half an inch or less, than stick with the 60.  Last year's Black Friday deals from Olympus had the 30mm going for $100- pretty hard to beat that.


I had the Olympus 7-14, but sold it in favor of the Panasonic-Leica 8-18.  It features a better range underwater plus the ability to use filters topside.  It also works in the same dome as the 12-40.  I use the Inon 170mm dome, and the Oly 8mm also works great in that, just without the extension ring you'll need for the zooms.

Must say I  agree, the 12-40 is very versatile,  I went to Ningaloo reef last year, plenty to see, nice diving and fish etc but not anything much that seemed CFWA worthy to me so I used the 12-40 and I got some results I'm pleased with:




everything on this gallery was with the 12-40 except the whale shark.    The 12-50 may sound attractive but you're shooting the wide end through a flat port that's super expensive, so the 24mm which sounds widish now has the field of view of a 30mm with degraded corners due to the flat port .  There was a post here talking about going with a EM-5 MkII in an Oly housing with the 14-42 vs something like a G7x or RX100 and it's hard to come up with an argument to go with  that Oly combo and by extension to the 12-50mm, the advantage comes when using the good lenses in a dome or a dedicated macro lens.  


Another thing to be aware of is that the Pany 7-14 can be installed from the back attached to the lens, the 12-40 can marginally fit, but the Oly 7-14 has to be installed from the front then the port installed over the top.  Keep an eye on the classifieds here, I've seen Zen and Nauticam 180mm domes dome up at times.  I bought my 12-40 first and added the macro later on.

#396741 Oly OM system starting from scratch

Posted by ChrisRoss on 24 June 2018 - 07:53 PM

I shoot with the EM-II recently upgraded from the EM5-II.  I have the 60mm macro and recently added the Panasonic 30mm macro.  I shoot mainly in the temperate waters around Sydney and found the 60mm problematic, you had to back off too far for many subjects and when focusing out from a close subject it would tend to lock onto floaties instead of the subject, the 30mm does not seem to do that.  The EM-5 II would do that much more so than the EM1.   Of course in clear tropical waters it will be different and less of an issue.  You will probably want a focus light particularly with the 60mm..


On wide I shoot the 12-40 and Pany 7-14 in the same Zen 170mm type II dome.  If you study the port charts you'll see if you got the N-120 version of that dome it will allow you to shoot the 12-40, both 7-14 lenses and even the 8mm fisheye in the same dome, though you do need to source a custom 30mm N85-N120 adapter which I have seen mentioned in other threads on this forum.  this is theport chart for Zen: 




Again the choice of wide lens depends on what and where you are shooting, the ifsheye is especially challenging, but has its place for things like big animals and CFWA, definitely not a point and shoot lens.    In Sydney I tend to use the 12-40mm lens the most, due to water conditions.

#396393 Help, stuck port adapter

Posted by ChrisRoss on 13 June 2018 - 04:23 PM

Assume you have the instructions with details on how to confirm that the lock is disengaged.  If you are 100% sure this is unlocked try a pair of strap wrenches to rotate in the correct direction.