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Need info/technique on Stealth Mode


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#1 kc_moses

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 09:03 AM

I can't believe it, Googled it and nothing detail show up.

I'm searching on my first set of dive light mainly for video. I'm wondering if Stealth Mode feature would be handy and should be part of my set up down the road?

I understand that the concept of it is, by using red light, marine creature would freak out as they don't know how to process red light. But I'm wonder how we has photographer/videographer deal with the red light.

In the case of photo, do we use the red light to set exposure/iso/focus, then when it's time to take the snapshot, fire up the flash so there won't be any red color tint in the photo? Or do we take custom white balance with the red light shine on the subject, and just take a snapshot without flash.

How is one use stealth mode for video?

Also, what marine creature are better/must candidate to use stealth mode?

Thanks!

#2 billmackbarnes

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:49 PM

Stealth mode for underwater photography at night (using a red light) works great for fish. This is why I really like the Sola photo lights.

Many critters, like sea horses, still see red. The critter may not be as upset by the red spotting light as with a white spotting light, but they still see it and will turn away. They may not run away as usual.

Many fish and spawning sea stars are literally red blind. You can find your subject, adjust your strobes, set your camera, and have your camera focus using only red lights. The Sola lights turn the red off for a few seconds, when the strobes fire. I have seen red lights that didn't and the red can show up in the pictures.

Of course, after you fire your strobes the first time, the fish run off and hide, turn away, or simply disappear while your eyes are adjusting.

Spawning sea stars get spooked and will dip back down and hide if you try to shoot them too early. If you wait till they are releasing eggs, they might stay there for you.

Red works for fish, I tried blue on critters, but with no luck.

Bill

I don't think stealth mode for video will work since you use white lights.

#3 JackConnick

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 01:18 PM

Red light is particularly good with crabs and cheplipods like Octos and squid. You can always quickly switch over to white light to film video and back to red.

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#4 kc_moses

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 01:48 PM

Ah...... so that's how the work flow is for Stealth mode, that means once the strobe is fired up, the marine create freakout and hide away. So the people behind me won't get to see them...... oh well, good thing marine creature don't have heart attack, he he.

As for red light with video, I think it can be done. It's just that the camera need to do a custom white balance of the slate with the red light on, and just keep recording. I think this will work better on night dive.

Right now I'm debate about SOLA 800 and the UK Aqualite 90. Thanks for the info guys!

#5 johnjvv

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 06:49 PM

With a camera the strobes will mostly wash the red out but in some cases pics will have a redish look. I imagine it is a different kettle of fish with video and i am unsure how you will get any colour other than red without having white light???

#6 blaisedouros

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 09:30 AM

The Sola lights turn the red off for a few seconds, when the strobes fire. I have seen red lights that didn't and the red can show up in the pictures.



Solas actually do not turn off when strobes fire. However, if you shoot with a shutter speed of 1/125 or faster, the red light will pretty much be eliminated, since it is not very bright.

How is one use stealth mode for video?



I imagine it is a different kettle of fish with video and i am unsure how you will get any colour other than red without having white light???


Red lights are not very useful for video, as you will never be able to white balance out the red color. It's primarily meant for still photographers as a stealth spotting light, since they can fire their strobes, which overpower the red light.

You can still use the light for stealth video, but you should not expect your colors to be accurate--you can take video of behaviors that wouldn't be possible with white light, but the scene will be red-colored. Think of it as the underwater version of that green-y night vision-type footage--it never looks amazing, but you see things that you might not otherwise see.

#7 kc_moses

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 07:40 AM

Solas actually do not turn off when strobes fire. However, if you shoot with a shutter speed of 1/125 or faster, the red light will pretty much be eliminated, since it is not very bright.

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Red lights are not very useful for video, as you will never be able to white balance out the red color. It's primarily meant for still photographers as a stealth spotting light, since they can fire their strobes, which overpower the red light.

You can still use the light for stealth video, but you should not expect your colors to be accurate--you can take video of behaviors that wouldn't be possible with white light, but the scene will be red-colored. Think of it as the underwater version of that green-y night vision-type footage--it never looks amazing, but you see things that you might not otherwise see.


But in theory, the red light should work for video, as long as you take custome white balance. Like I said, take a white balance of the white slate with the red light, so anything that has red/pink color now become the new white. This should work for close distance subject (macro), not sure about far/wide scene. I may just go with UK Aqualite, and get a red gel to play with it.

#8 blaisedouros

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 10:40 AM

But in theory, the red light should work for video, as long as you take custome white balance. Like I said, take a white balance of the white slate with the red light, so anything that has red/pink color now become the new white. This should work for close distance subject (macro), not sure about far/wide scene. I may just go with UK Aqualite, and get a red gel to play with it.


White balance works by reducing the gain on the sensor sites that are receiving higher amounts of one color and increasing the gain on the sites that are receiving less color to produce a balance between red, green, and blue to produce white light. If the only color the camera is seeing is red, there is no green or blue light to produce a white balance.

In theory, the only way that the camera could "correctly" white balance a scene lit with only red light would be to turn off the red photosites, producing a black image (since there's no green or blue light hitting the sensor at all). In practice, you might get some weird color shifts or green and blue noise in the image as the camera bumps up the green and blue gain. You'd be better off setting a regular white balance with white light, shooting with red, and just accepting the color shift. You could convert to black and white in post for a less jarring look.

#9 Interceptor121

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 12:53 PM

Red light is not useful for video
Is a tool to shoot stills of otherwise skittish fish that will run off once you fire the strobe

For video You can dim a sola down to 300 lumens and if that's too much you can carry a smaller led light with 150-180 and wide beam
Only situation I needed to do that is mating mandarin fish but once they go for it they don't stop you can beam them up

Edited by Interceptor121, 07 November 2012 - 12:53 PM.