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UK-GERMANY 45° Viewfinder available!


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#1 Helge Suess

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 08:12 AM

Hi!

The 45° Viewfinder built by UK-GERMANY is now available. I've seen the first samples mounted to a Canon 5D housing:
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The finder has an angle of view of about 40° at a distance of approximately 45mm from the rear lens. This allows to view the whole finder area with a mask at a scale of 1:1. It has a ball lock to snap in position at 90° steps when rotated. Correction for +/- 3.5 diopters.

Now the really good news: The finder isn't restricted to UK-GERMANY housings only (it is backward compatible to nearly all existing UK-GERMANY housings). The finder is available to all housing manufactureres and DIY projects as well. It may be easily customized to fit housings on request.

The only bad news: I have no pricing information yet but I expect it to be at a competitive level.

If you're interested, please drop me a mail. Manufacturers welcome!

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#2 davidrodkeller

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 08:28 AM

The 45° Viewfinder built by UK-GERMANY is now available. I've seen the first samples mounted to a Canon 5D housing:

This UK-Germany version, like all 45's, looks like it gets into the LCD screen a bit and will cause the photographer to lift and tilt his/her housing to see the image and histogram. Otherwise it looks compact and probably lightweight (comparitively).

What is the magnification and lens diameter? Does it have a screw diopter so people can closely match it to their vision?
Thanks,
DRK

#3 Helge Suess

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 10:31 PM

Hi!

This UK-Germany version, like all 45's, looks like it gets into the LCD screen a bit and will cause the photographer to lift and tilt his/her housing to see the image and histogram. Otherwise it looks compact and probably lightweight (comparitively).

Yes, it shades the LCD a bit but not too much. The 45° prism is asymmetric so you can't mount it without covering the LCD. Not on a camera with current LCD sizes and body dimensions. It isn't that bad though. You see on the pictures that most of the LCD is visible at an acceptable angle. The weight is approximately 500g. You may mount and remove the finder easily for transport.

What is the magnification and lens diameter? Does it have a screw diopter so people can closely match it to their vision?

The rear lens is 40mm wide. Magnification is approximately 1:1 so you will see the finder as you would topside (although from a larger distance). It has an adjustable diopter +/- 3.5 dpt.

I will prepare a drawing with the mount dimensions so you may check if it would be adaptable to a specific housing.

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#4 davidrodkeller

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 11:16 AM

The weight is approximately 500g. You may mount and remove the finder easily for transport.
The rear lens is 40mm wide. Magnification is approximately 1:1 so you will see the finder as you would topside (although from a larger distance). It has an adjustable diopter +/- 3.5 dpt.

It sounds like it was done right, and is deep enough that the diver's regulator is far away from the housing back. The diopter adjustment cannot be over-estimated in importance.

Is it a pinpoint viewfinder like Subal's GS 180, (or at least the one I looked through) or can you be off-center looking into the viewfinder yet still see the full camera viewfinder? The subal I tested went black if my eye was not centered on the rear lenses. A curious shortcoming in my view, but then the Subal vf is roughly half the cost of Seacam 45 or 180, and maybe they were trying to limit the price point.
Thanks,
DRK

#5 Helge Suess

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 11:55 PM

It sounds like it was done right, and is deep enough that the diver's regulator is far away from the housing back. The diopter adjustment cannot be over-estimated in importance.

One of the issues is to leave enough space for the regulator. That's the easy part. The tricky one is to leave enough space for the mask. That's what drives up the costs (rear lens diameter and prism size).

Is it a pinpoint viewfinder like Subal's GS 180, (or at least the one I looked through) or can you be off-center looking into the viewfinder yet still see the full camera viewfinder? The subal I tested went black if my eye was not centered on the rear lenses. A curious shortcoming in my view, but then the Subal vf is roughly half the cost of Seacam 45 or 180, and maybe they were trying to limit the price point.

You have to look pretty straight centered. That's caused by the design and I think that there's nerly no way around it. Not for reasonable money.
I haven't had a look through the Seacam 45° finder yet. It's hard to get your hands on one of those. Does it tolerate off-centered views?

For those who asked, here are a few measurements:
AngleFinderDummy01.gif

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#6 solenostomus

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 01:17 AM

Great news! Thanks for posting Helge!

I have a couple of questions:

(1) Can it be mounted/dismounted by the photographer "in the field" ? I can see myself using the new finder for macro one day and then taking it off for wideangle the next.
The foam compartments in my peli-case are already cut out for my UK housing as it is. I would like to take the finder on a trip in a separate pouch and mount it once I get to the resort.

(2) Any hints on the price ? Can I order one from Uwe or from you ?

(3) Does it magnify the viewfinder image in any way ? I use an old 300D underwater and the piddly viewfinder size is the one single drawback of my setup under water. Any magnification (even 1.2x) would be appreciated and would make me want one even more.

#7 Helge Suess

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 12:41 AM

Hi!

I have a couple of questions:

(1) Can it be mounted/dismounted by the photographer "in the field" ? I can see myself using the new finder for macro one day and then taking it off for wideangle the next.
The foam compartments in my peli-case are already cut out for my UK housing as it is. I would like to take the finder on a trip in a separate pouch and mount it once I get to the resort.

(2) Any hints on the price ? Can I order one from Uwe or from you ?

(3) Does it magnify the viewfinder image in any way ? I use an old 300D underwater and the piddly viewfinder size is the one single drawback of my setup under water. Any magnification (even 1.2x) would be appreciated and would make me want one even more.

The finder can be mounted and dismounted by the user. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to do it. It is screwed in and fastened from the inside. There'S a special flat screwdriver-like tool to do it.
We're still calculating the price. The aim was to be well below 1000 EUR but I can'T tell at the moment how well below it will be :-)
There's no magnification. It's hard enough to get the image through at about 1:1 but you will have the same vision as with the camera used topside. Compared to the galileic finder (the standard UK-GERMANY finder) which is typical for most housings the image is larger.

You may place orders directly with UK-GERMANY. Uwe isn't very good at writing in English so I'm doing the English part of the communication. Please note that I'm out for testing (Galapagos archipelago) for a couple of weeks starting on February 1st so there may be some delay in information flow. I try to get the crucial infos before I leave (pricing e.g. or which other manufacturer joins in to use or retro-fit the finder).

I already actively contacted a wide range of DSLR housing manufacturers to offer coperation. I hope that I'm able to present good news soon.

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#8 rbailey

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 10:55 PM

Hi,

Looks a great product.
Very interested by the comment about other hosuing manufacturers.

I've got an Ikelite rig on which the standard view finder has served my fine. However I've just ordered a Rebreather (YBOD - Evolution Vision :P ) which as well as having the normal breathing loop and mouhtpiece it has got a Head Up Display. (I'm also looking at a Bail Out Valve in the near future.)
This means there will be a lot of stuff between my mask and the viewfinder.

Look forward to seeing prices and info on housing compatability.

Cheers,
Richard B.
Camera : Canon 350 D. (8MP, D-SLR, APS-C.)
Housing : Ikelite eTTL hosuing.
Ports : 6" Dome, 8" Dome and Flat port and selection of extenstions.
Lenses : Sigma 10-20mm, 17-70mm Macro, 105mm Macro (with +4 diopter).
Stobes : 2 x Ikelite DS 125.
Arms : Ikelite, 18 inch quick release (LHS) and 8"+6" standard (LHS).
AND a Yellow Box Of Delights to breath from undewater and loads of other really fun stuff.


Check out ther results at :-

http://www.images-underwater.net/



#9 Rattus

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 03:10 AM

Lovely piece of work Helge. Makes my Inon/Hugy piece look rather boxy. So does it rotate at the slanted joining line partway back or just at the housing joint itself?

Martyn
Canon 5D
S&S DX-5D housing, TTL, YS-110s, ULCS, etc.

#10 Helge Suess

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 08:25 AM

Hi!

Lovely piece of work Helge. Makes my Inon/Hugy piece look rather boxy. So does it rotate at the slanted joining line partway back or just at the housing joint itself?

Thanks for the roses.
It rotates around the optical axis of the camera finder. The part screwed into the back of the housing stays fixed, the whole remaining parts of the finder go round. The slanted joining line lies in the middle of the prism. Rotating it would be no good idea at all. The area is far from circular so rotating at this plane would destroy the prism and cause a leak too. The joining parts around this surface are therefore sealed and screwed together permanently.

The eyepiece rotates to adjust the diopter for your personal preferences (and does so around its 45° slanted central axis only).

There's already a coarse pricing information available. It will settle after the BOOT trade fair in Düsseldorf next week.
The finder will cost about EUR 800 to 850 (end user).

It will also get an additional rubber eyepiece which isn't shown on the pictures above.

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#11 Rattus

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 10:24 AM

Looks like a pretty good price, well done.

One thought about "the part screwed into the back of the housing", is it a sealed unit itself, so if the 45° part leaks or falls out, is the housing seal still intact?

Martyn
Canon 5D
S&S DX-5D housing, TTL, YS-110s, ULCS, etc.

#12 kaarlin

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 08:40 AM

can't wait!!!

www.karinbrussaard.nl

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#13 EspenRekdal

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 08:49 AM

What are the chances I could fit one to a Nexus housing?

The Inon has not been getting the reviews I had hoped.

Thanks,
Espen :D
Nikon D4, D3s, D2x, etc etc.. Nauticam housing, Inon z240s, Subtronic Mega Cs and housed Nikon Sb900s...

#14 mikedive

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 10:11 AM

Hi all ,
@rattus no there is no sealed part in the housing if the viewer falls out if it fall´s out you do not need a sealing :D But the unit itself is compeete sealed so if a housing gets floodet " only" the cam is dead .....The sealing is like a port sealing, one 0-Ring ...... the turnment is sealed in the unit so no problems about users handling .....

I already had a look through the 45° viewfinder at the 5D housing .... allmost an alternative to my E330 liveview display but the price.......

Michael
Nikon D300 - UK-D300 - different Lenses and Ports - MD04 Ball-Arms , YS 60speed / INON Z240 / Hartenberger hs250 ,and several other parts

#15 Helge Suess

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 03:19 AM

Hi all,

a short status report:
I've contacted Aquatica, Ikelite, Light&Motion, Nexus and Sea&Sea so far. Some of them answered already and are thinking about adaption for existing or future housings. More info as it drops in.

@rattus: The finder is assembled at the factory. The part that screws into the housing is mounted permanently and sealed to the 45° block of the finder. As Mike already mentioned it is completely sealed.

Helge ;-)=)
Olympus E-5 in UK-GERMANY housing and a bag full of glass ...

#16 Rattus

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 05:39 AM

@rattus: The finder is assembled at the factory. The part that screws into the housing is mounted permanently and sealed to the 45° block of the finder. As Mike already mentioned it is completely sealed.


OK, so is the housing still sealed when the user dismounts the viewfinder for travel? That was the feature I admired in the Hugyfot/Inon solution that I was careful to keep when adapting it to the Sea&Sea housing. I appreciate that most accessory viewfinders don't do this, and there is an assumption that the viewfinder structure is sufficiently well sealed that this "belt and braces" approach is not necessary.

Cheers,

Martyn
Canon 5D
S&S DX-5D housing, TTL, YS-110s, ULCS, etc.

#17 solenostomus

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 06:00 AM

OK, so is the housing still sealed when the user dismounts the viewfinder for travel?


And my question on that - What is left on the housing when I take it off?
Can I still switch to the old viewfinder, when I don't need the angled version on a wideangle dive?
It says the angled finder is user interchangeable, but with what ? Will the old finder still fit after the housing has been converted? Or can the angled finder be set to a non-angled position?


Helge, maybe you can post some more pics of the viewfinder in its various configurations. I still haven't quite sussed out how the finder works, mainly because I've never used one. A couple of pictures could clear up the confusion.


Thanks a lot

#18 giftie

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 06:46 AM

Hi all,

a short status report:
I've contacted Aquatica, Ikelite, Light&Motion, Nexus and Sea&Sea so far. Some of them answered already and are thinking about adaption for existing or future housings. More info as it drops in.

@rattus: The finder is assembled at the factory. The part that screws into the housing is mounted permanently and sealed to the 45° block of the finder. As Mike already mentioned it is completely sealed.

Helge ;-)=)


I would be very interested in one if it can be made to fit my Aquatica D200, keep us posted on developments Helge?
Jorge Santos
Aquatica D200/Twin DS-125/Hart 250HS/SB-800/10.5DX/12-24DX/17-55DX/105/60/ULCS
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#19 Undertow

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 11:00 AM

I would be very interested in one if it can be made to fit my Aquatica D200, keep us posted on developments Helge?


I'll ring in also for an Aquatica D200 retrofit! I found myself screaming for a 45 degree finder yesterday while trying to shoot low angles on a super silty bottom.
Cheers,
Chris

Edited by Undertow, 23 January 2007 - 05:43 AM.

D200, Aquatica, 10.5, sig 15, 12-24, 17-55, 60, 105
3x SB-105

#20 Helge Suess

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 03:20 AM

Hi!

What's left when you unmount the 45° finder? -- A hole with a thread. You may mount a galileic finder (2 lenses, acting like an old telecsope but in reverse thus reducing the image size) or a simple glass screen (which is worse). The galileic finders are the type you unsually get as a default on your housing.
You may also have a threaded plug to replace the finder and sealing the housing as well.

The finder is user interchangable with the old finder or with a replacement that has the same mount as the new finder. Depending on the design of your housing and the way we are able to retro-fit you may use your existing finder or have to get a (simple and cheap) new one.

I'll tell you about the progress of retro-fitting activities but I think that there won't be much news before I leave on holidays.

Helge ;-)=)
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