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Underwater Monitor for Panasonic GH5


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#1 adamtaylor

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 10:32 AM

Hi all,

Am new to shooting video and am loving my GH5 in Nauticam housing.

My biggest complaint is the position of the viewfinder...

For most macro shots I cannot see the screen without being on my belly disturbing the bottom. For some wide angle where I am swimming it would be nice to look down on the screen so I can better frame sideways / upwards shots.

I am doing alot of conservation work on glass sponge reefs and the last thing I want to do is damage the delicate sponges trying to capture images of the reef and fish life from their level.

Have done some basic research and need some input / advice.

1) As amazing as the Atomos Ninja Inferno in a Nauticam sounds the price is double other options. With the GH5's available internal recording formats it would take serious convincing before giving this option more thought.

2) Small HD in Nauticam housing

3) Dive and See 5" monitor

Anyone used either the Small HD or Dive and See?

Am looking for input on which model people recommend and why? How have you mounted yours, how easy is it to use wearing gloves etc.

External feed to surface isn't necesary but would be nice to have / add in future.

Any comments and suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,


Adam

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#2 Nick Hope

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 05:18 PM

I use the Dive and See DNC-7A with my GH4.

 

It's been very reliable for me, and a battery charge easily lasts all day.

 

The colour rendition was never great, but it's time I checked all the settings; I'm scared of all those buttons along the bottom so I haven't touched any of them for over 2 years :D

 

I don't use the shade anymore because it tends to obscure the red record symbol at the top of the screen. I don't miss it.

 

NA-GH4-macro-rig-Nick-Hope.jpg

 

I have it mounted with a ball clamp like in this photo.

 

DNC-7A-and-NA-GH4.jpg



#3 adamtaylor

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:37 PM

I use the Dive and See DNC-7A with my GH4.
 
It's been very reliable for me, and a battery charge easily lasts all day.
 
The colour rendition was never great, but it's time I checked all the settings; I'm scared of all those buttons along the bottom so I haven't touched any of them for over 2 years :D
 
I don't use the shade anymore because it tends to obscure the red record symbol at the top of the screen. I don't miss it.
 
NA-GH4-macro-rig-Nick-Hope.jpg
 
I have it mounted with a ball clamp like in this photo.
 
DNC-7A-and-NA-GH4.jpg

Thanks Nick,

Seeing the size in relation to a similar housing is great. I am considering the smaller 5" version, so seeing that the 7" model is not enourmous is a relief.

The images and video I have seen of the Atomos Shogun looked rather unwieldy.

Hopefully someone has tried both Small HD and Dive amd See products and can comment.

My eyes are still good, but its tough to see focus peaking on the tiny GH5 screen, especially from am angle.

Regards


Adam

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#4 bubffm

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Posted 18 October 2017 - 01:15 AM

Hi Adam,

 

as you already researched, options are limited. In the end I decided for a DiveandSee 5.5inch Monitor, called DNC-5A.  Its the replacement for the 5inch which is not being manufactured anymore.

 

It's a fullHD Monitor (ie same resolution as the 7inch) but a little bit more compact. Still weights 1.3kg compared to just 1kg for the previous 5inch version. I like the screen quality of the DNC and certainly compared to the SmallHD Focus which I use overland it compares quite well. (To be fair the Focus is only 1280 and not FullHD). I like that its ready to dive. No housing to maintain, no O-rings to worry - and it saves weight. Charging is easly done thru the plug on the backside. And as Nick says battery lasts easily for a day. 

 

The one thing I underestimated is the the drag this creates in truly heavy current. In Fiji I took it off after a couple of dives because it was getting too tough. Later put it back on when conditions eased up. 

 

The buttons on top of the monitor are quite narrow and and the click-and-turn button for menu navigation is miniscule. So, not sure how well this would work with big dry gloves. But then again I don't really fiddle much with those buttons underwater anyway. I've Peaking always turned on and if really required press F2 to get the Scopes I've put on there.

 

Anyway, couple of pics attached with WA-setup using the Nauticam 180 Dome, sans lights.

Attached Images

  • IMG_3562.JPG
  • IMG_3564.JPG
  • IMG_3565.JPG
  • IMG_3560.JPG

Edited by bubffm, 18 October 2017 - 01:30 AM.


#5 adamtaylor

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Posted 18 October 2017 - 08:57 AM

Hi Adam,
 
as you already researched, options are limited. In the end I decided for a DiveandSee 5.5inch Monitor, called DNC-5A.  Its the replacement for the 5inch which is not being manufactured anymore.
 
It's a fullHD Monitor (ie same resolution as the 7inch) but a little bit more compact. Still weights 1.3kg compared to just 1kg for the previous 5inch version. I like the screen quality of the DNC and certainly compared to the SmallHD Focus which I use overland it compares quite well. (To be fair the Focus is only 1280 and not FullHD). I like that its ready to dive. No housing to maintain, no O-rings to worry - and it saves weight. Charging is easly done thru the plug on the backside. And as Nick says battery lasts easily for a day. 
 
The one thing I underestimated is the the drag this creates in truly heavy current. In Fiji I took it off after a couple of dives because it was getting too tough. Later put it back on when conditions eased up. 
 
The buttons on top of the monitor are quite narrow and and the click-and-turn button for menu navigation is miniscule. So, not sure how well this would work with big dry gloves. But then again I don't really fiddle much with those buttons underwater anyway. I've Peaking always turned on and if really required press F2 to get the Scopes I've put on there.
 
Anyway, couple of pics attached with WA-setup using the Nauticam 180 Dome, sans lights.

Many thanks bubffm for the comments and especially the pics.

As the specs appear similar my choice may be down to the simple question of do I want / need a monitor for anove water use?

If you didn't already have the othe SmallHD topside monitor would you have gone for the newer SmallHD + housing?

This discussion is really helping me narrow down my decision.

Thanks


Adam

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#6 bubffm

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Posted 18 October 2017 - 09:27 AM

I looked at the smallhd/Nauticam housing setup at a dealer and found it pretty clumsy, which helped straighten my mind :)

#7 adamtaylor

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Posted 18 October 2017 - 11:20 AM

I looked at the smallhd/Nauticam housing setup at a dealer and found it pretty clumsy, which helped straighten my mind :)

Good to know...

No local dealers where I can try hands-on so this type of input is appreciated.

My dry gloves are not super thick, but later in winter / early spring when there is a lot of snowmelt will be doubling up my wool gloves underneath

Thanks again

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#8 stphnmartin

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Posted 19 October 2017 - 11:22 PM

Hey Adam,

 

I have the SmallHD501 with the Nauticam housing. Like you I was considering the ninja inferno as the screen costs the same as the SmallHD. However, the housing for the ninja is way more expensive. I also looked at the Diveandsee monitors but didn't like that it was always in the housing as I'd like to use it on land too sometimes. So, I opted for the SmallHD501 and Nauticam housing.

 

The housing does seem to be much bigger than it needs to be for the size of the smallHD screen. It is slightly positive in buoyancy. This is helpful so as not to require floats. There are 5 main buttons that are easy to use with dry gloves on and two buttons on the top. The smallHD is really easy to operate and I've made adjustments to it during dives with no problems. 

 

One feature I like a lot is that the smallHD screen will flip its orientation just like a mobile phone does. It also flips the operation of the buttons so you don't have to think about them operating differently when upside down. Previously I had the monitor mounted above the camera, but since the screen flips, I have the monitor mounted behind the camera. This make it easier to see the subject and position the camera correctly.

 

I can get about three dives using 2 batteries in the monitor. However, having the monitor connected to the hdmi port on the GH5 prevents the camera from going to sleep. So, I can only get about 1.75 dives out of the camera battery. So, I usually swap the camera battery after every dive. (I usually do a least an hour on each dive).

 

I mainly use focus assist, exposure peaking and histogram features of the smallHD.

 

It's late now, but I'll post some pictures of the setup tomorrow.


Edited by stphnmartin, 20 October 2017 - 08:18 AM.

View dive videos on my youtube channel. Panasonic GH5, Nauticam housing, SmallHD 501 monitor, Sola 3000s, Phantom 4, Osmo, Final Cut Pro X


#9 thetrickster

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 04:41 AM

The images and video I have seen of the Atomos Shogun looked rather unwieldy.
 

 

I can attest to the fact that the Atomos housings for their 7" monitors make a relatively small rig rather large and yes very unwieldy - BUT stable.

 

The other issue, is as much as I love the Nauticam housings - they are negative as my weight belt, and its not just the size of the housing thats the issue, its the number (and size) of the float arms you need to get the thing neutrally buoyant. Can post photos of my neutrally buoyant rig later, its cost me a lot in buying arms and getting the right mix.

 

I don't regret getting the Flame housing, but the days I take just the camera for some some ambient light shots - I really appreciate the size.

 

The only benefits you will get with running the Atomos is the potential to get 4K 10bit 422 60fps and increased AF speed, but on the other hand, it can't handle the new 6K modes (once you hit record there is no HDMI output) and the cost of SSDs for 4K 60p is something to consider, for the marginal gains.

But boy is that screen a joy to use underwater....


Regards, Richard

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#10 adamtaylor

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 09:00 AM

Hey Adam,
 
I have the SmallHD501 with the Nauticam housing. Like you I was considering the ninja inferno as the screen costs the same as the SmallHD. However, the housing for the ninja is way more expensive. I also looked at the Diveandsee monitors but didn't like that it was always in the housing as I'd like to use it on land too sometimes. So, I opted for the SmallHD501 and Nauticam housing.
 
The housing does seem to be much bigger than it needs to be for the size of the smallHD screen. It is slightly positive in buoyancy. This is helpful so as not to require floats. There are 5 main buttons that are easy to use with dry gloves on and two buttons on the top. The smallHD is really easy to operate and I've made adjustments to it during dives with no problems. 
 
One feature I like a lot is that the smallHD screen will flip its orientation just like a mobile phone does. It also flips the operation of the buttons so you don't have to think about them operating differently when upside down. Previously I had the monitor mounted above the camera, but since the screen flips, I have the monitor mounted behind the camera. This make it easier to see the subject and position the camera correctly.
 
I can get about three dives using 2 batteries in the monitor. However, having the monitor connected to the hdmi port on the GH5 prevents the camera from going to sleep. So, I can only get about 1.75 dives out of the camera battery. So, I usually swap the camera battery after every dive. (I usually do a least an hour on each dive).
 
I mainly use focus assist, exposure peaking and histogram features of the smallHD.
 
It's late now, but I'll post some pictures of the setup tomorrow.

Thanks for the input.

Is the screen orientation change you mention highly sensitive? Can it be turned off?

I am hoping to have a top mounted screen I can clearly view from above. Basically for wide angle on the glass sponge reefs I want to be able to hold the camera below me to get a sideways / slightly upwards shot as I swim the edge of the reef. Between the silty bottom or live sponge cover I need to keep my fins up in the water column



Thanks


Adam

Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#11 adamtaylor

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 09:02 AM

 
I can attest to the fact that the Atomos housings for their 7" monitors make a relatively small rig rather large and yes very unwieldy - BUT stable.
 
The other issue, is as much as I love the Nauticam housings - they are negative as my weight belt, and its not just the size of the housing thats the issue, its the number (and size) of the float arms you need to get the thing neutrally buoyant. Can post photos of my neutrally buoyant rig later, its cost me a lot in buying arms and getting the right mix.
 
I don't regret getting the Flame housing, but the days I take just the camera for some some ambient light shots - I really appreciate the size.
 
The only benefits you will get with running the Atomos is the potential to get 4K 10bit 422 60fps and increased AF speed, but on the other hand, it can't handle the new 6K modes (once you hit record there is no HDMI output) and the cost of SSDs for 4K 60p is something to consider, for the marginal gains.

But boy is that screen a joy to use underwater....

Would be interested in seeing images, but am thinking the higher cost for the Atomos housing could be used for a new lens instead

Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#12 adamtaylor

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 09:13 AM

Thanks Nick,

Seeing the size in relation to a similar housing is great. I am considering the smaller 5" version, so seeing that the 7" model is not enourmous is a relief.

The images and video I have seen of the Atomos Shogun looked rather unwieldy.

Hopefully someone has tried both Small HD and Dive amd See products and can comment.

My eyes are still good, but its tough to see focus peaking on the tiny GH5 screen, especially from am angle.

Regards


Adam

Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk

Another thought / question for the forum.

Has anyone either sent a signal to the surface, or mounted the monitor further from the camera?

Am thinking about filming spawing salmon and it would be nice to set camera on tripod and control from streamside instead of in the water... Mind you even having a monitor on top will save getting a kinked neck in shallow streams.

Thanks for all the useful input so far


Adam

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#13 bubffm

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 11:16 AM

Hi Adam,

you should probably have a chat with Alex from Diveandsee. I know he has developed cables (I think up to 30m) to do just that, and there is a version of the Monitor with a connector for an outgoing cable.

Burkhard

#14 stphnmartin

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 06:20 PM

Thanks for the input.

Is the screen orientation change you mention highly sensitive? Can it be turned off?

I am hoping to have a top mounted screen I can clearly view from above. Basically for wide angle on the glass sponge reefs I want to be able to hold the camera below me to get a sideways / slightly upwards shot as I swim the edge of the reef. Between the silty bottom or live sponge cover I need to keep my fins up in the water column



Thanks


Adam

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The image flip can be turned off and it's not intrusive. I haven't had it flip on me unless I was tipping the camera to the extreme. How you describe your use of the camera is exactly why I have it set this way. It's really easy to adjust in this orientation.

 

I have the camera's built in screen turned off and I can get to the buttons and dials just fine. Attached are some bad iphone pics to give you an idea. I have the tilt adjust in several positions. It adjusts easily underwater. Positioned behind the camera it's less of a sail in current, but it still creates drag.

 

Attached Images

  • IMG_5258.jpg
  • IMG_5257.jpg
  • IMG_5259.jpg
  • IMG_5260.jpg
  • IMG_5261.jpg

View dive videos on my youtube channel. Panasonic GH5, Nauticam housing, SmallHD 501 monitor, Sola 3000s, Phantom 4, Osmo, Final Cut Pro X


#15 stphnmartin

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 06:28 PM

I should also add about the SmallHD 501 housing is if you have the vacuum ports on both the monitor and camera housings there is a slight complication. Basically if you open one, you'll have to vacuum both of them again as the pressure will be released through the hdmi cable. This is a bit of a pain. It takes just a couple minutes and you don't have to open the other housing, but it may require moving pieces around to reach the vacuum port. So, it's mainly an irritation.


View dive videos on my youtube channel. Panasonic GH5, Nauticam housing, SmallHD 501 monitor, Sola 3000s, Phantom 4, Osmo, Final Cut Pro X


#16 adamtaylor

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 07:14 PM

I should also add about the SmallHD 501 housing is if you have the vacuum ports on both the monitor and camera housings there is a slight complication. Basically if you open one, you'll have to vacuum both of them again as the pressure will be released through the hdmi cable. This is a bit of a pain. It takes just a couple minutes and you don't have to open the other housing, but it may require moving pieces around to reach the vacuum port. So, it's mainly an irritation.

Thanks for the images.

Really helps me get a feel for the set up. I note you have the flip adaptor on your 12-50 Macro port. Are you using the CMC 1 or CMC2?

Do you think the system would balance the vacuum if only one housing had the vacuum valve?

Thanks


Adam

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<p>Olympus OMD E-M5, Nauticam Housing,12-40 f2.8 with 180mmm dome & extensions, 12-50mm & 60mm in macro port, 8mm Panasonic Fisheye in 4" mini-dome, 2 x YS-D1, Sola 800

#17 stphnmartin

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 08:00 PM

Thanks for the images.

Really helps me get a feel for the set up. I note you have the flip adaptor on your 12-50 Macro port. Are you using the CMC 1 or CMC2?

Do you think the system would balance the vacuum if only one housing had the vacuum valve?

Thanks


Adam

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The 501 housing comes with the vacuum valve, so if you have it on your GH5 housing you're set. If you don't have it on the GH5 housing it may balance in time. You'd have to over vacuum the GH5 housing (Nauticam warns against doing this) and hope it's enough to eventually equalize. It's not a fast process, takes a couple minutes, but might work.

 

I have the CMC-1. I didn't think the CMC-2 had enough magnification for the cost.

 

Good luck with your decision!


Edited by stphnmartin, 20 October 2017 - 08:00 PM.

View dive videos on my youtube channel. Panasonic GH5, Nauticam housing, SmallHD 501 monitor, Sola 3000s, Phantom 4, Osmo, Final Cut Pro X


#18 bubffm

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Posted 21 October 2017 - 01:07 AM

I should also add about the SmallHD 501 housing is if you have the vacuum ports on both the monitor and camera housings there is a slight complication. Basically if you open one, you'll have to vacuum both of them again as the pressure will be released through the hdmi cable. This is a bit of a pain. It takes just a couple minutes and you don't have to open the other housing, but it may require moving pieces around to reach the vacuum port. So, it's mainly an irritation.

 

I would be a tiny bit troubled about that one.  If air can travel thru the cable, water could do the same - or not? I.e. if one housing gets flooded, you may get a second flooding on top....

 

The bulkhead on the Diveandsee has a water-lock, so even if you cut the cable or forget to put the lid on the bulkhead when not using the monitor, no water can pass thru the bulkhead or damaged cable into the housing.



#19 stphnmartin

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Posted 21 October 2017 - 05:50 PM

 

I would be a tiny bit troubled about that one.  If air can travel thru the cable, water could do the same - or not? I.e. if one housing gets flooded, you may get a second flooding on top....

 

The bulkhead on the Diveandsee has a water-lock, so even if you cut the cable or forget to put the lid on the bulkhead when not using the monitor, no water can pass thru the bulkhead or damaged cable into the housing.

 

I agree. I thought this as well when I first discovered it. I'll contact Nauticam to see if this is expected behavior or if I have a defective cable.


View dive videos on my youtube channel. Panasonic GH5, Nauticam housing, SmallHD 501 monitor, Sola 3000s, Phantom 4, Osmo, Final Cut Pro X


#20 thetrickster

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Posted 22 October 2017 - 05:30 AM

Would be interested in seeing images


5e1494b5474470e09087854f3610c1c7.jpg

b4fef22c0aadc5247d2b1a4896fc7723.jpg

91fb43c0ef1b7787d0c08716881ef20c.jpg


Regards - Richard

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