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I'm new! What camera/housing/strobe should I buy?

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#41 anthp



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Posted 15 February 2005 - 04:49 PM

Hi James,

Looks like you have narrowed it down to some excellent choices.

Given that you are planning on shooting divers, a wide-angle (WA) lens is going to be critical. The lenses on the camera just aren't really wide enough (even the S70). Currently only the F810 and S&S have the option of an external lens. Advice from Inon is that the UWL100 28AD (designed for the S70) will not be released until May 2005. I'm not sure whether that will sway your decision. There is a thread here on wetpixel where someone describes using the standard UWL105AD on the S70, but they were facing issues of internal light reflections - so I'm not sure that is a great solution.

Now regarding the F810/SS... I've just purchased the F810 for friend - mainly for its RAW capability and low-light focus speed (which is something the S70 struggles with according to dpreview). I realise the battery is a bit of an issue and I've heard from users that they can only just fill one 512MB card with RAW or JPG before the battery dies (and that is not using flash for every shot). The person I bought the camera for will not be a very prolific shooter, but it may be worth it for you to have the extra capacity. Another thing to note is the F810 does not do STTL with the Inon D2000 (unlike the Canon S70). It will work well in "auto" or manual modes. The auto mode is independent of the camera and relies on light reflecting back at the strobe. For WA work tho, you're probably better off learning manual anyway. Although on the other hand - Alex Mustard had some great WA shots recently from a Oly 5060 and an Inon D2000 on STTL.

As far as the SS camera goes - I've heard very little about it and can't tell you whether it will have better battery life or low-light focus. Someone else might have to chip in there. FWIW it does seem like a relatively expensive option, but then if it performs better than the others - it ought to be. HTH
Anthony Plummer
"It's much better down there... It's a better place..." Enzo, Le Grand Bleu.

#42 Davidhol



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Posted 16 February 2005 - 03:23 AM

Hi James
I bought an Oly c8080 because of good reviews on pic quality. I have now come to the conclusion that underwater focus speed and shortest shutter lag time will be more important than the marginal increase in quality between different camera of same mpeg size. The ability to add strobes and TTL strobe control also important and Ikelites TTL solution for the Oly was the final reason I chose it.

#43 jams


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Posted 03 March 2005 - 10:59 PM

Just wanted to thank you guys for your comments - although I would have hoped a few more folks might reply too... (must remember to cross post next time!)

Just to let you know that I ended up going for the sea&sea dx5000g, which I managed to get for a steal from a local supplier. Will be getting in the water with it in the coming weeks and I'll let folks here and in other groups know how it performs. Hopefully, I'll be able to post a few of the photos, too! (local net connections allowing..)


#44 sergioi


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Posted 27 November 2007 - 05:13 PM

Hello, I am very very very new on Underwater Digital Photograpy. I've just bought an Ikelite Housing for my Sony V3. Since my camera has a hot shoe for an external flash I am trying to discover what is the best choice for an External Underwater Substrobe counting on Cost x Benefit, mainly cost, because here in Brazil this things usualy are expensive and I usually bring them from eBay.

I don't understand if other brands like S&S are copatible with my Ikelite Housing, or just Ikelite Substrobes are compatible with an Ikete Housing? Does the native TTL function from my camera will ever work? Because on Ikelite website says "NO".

I am looking for a new DS-51 Substrobe from ikelite, but it is a little bit expensive and I want something not so expensive that I can start shooting underwater with more quality.

Just to sare my crazy experiences, I am trying to adapt an Infrared Flashlite with 14 IR leds on my Ikelite Housing to be able to shot with Nightshot underwater, never tryied wet. Did anybody here has ever made such a thing? Do you think it should work like exploring holes and dark places?

Well for now that's all, I hope that we can share experiences here.

Best Regards,


#45 derway


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Posted 28 November 2007 - 08:27 AM

As usual, the Ikelite website is correct.

If you use a wired connection, from hot shoe to strobe, then you will have to shoot manual strobe power.

Many folks swear by manual over TTL.

So, going wired, you can get a synch cord that goes from the ikelite housing to almost any strobe, including ikelite, sea&sea, inon, & nikonos.

All of them will operate manual. Some of them offer more manual power levels for manual use.

For using TTL, you must use an optical slave, to trigger the strobe, in synch with the little pre-flashes, and so on, of the camera's flash. You can do this with the heinrich's DA2, attached to almost any compatible flash. Or you can use an inon strobe that has the optical slave built in, and connects with a fiber optical cable.

Some of the sea & sea strobes are supposed to be preflash compatible, and have optical slave systems, but I tried the ys-110, and could not get it to work, with the V3.

The DA2, and DS-51 is working very well for me.

Don Erway

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

#46 jsalzman


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Posted 16 May 2011 - 03:05 PM

Food for thought: I'm an avid photographer, but my diving is usually one significant trip a year. I started underwater photography years ago with Nikonos gear, and decided to graduate to an underwater housing for my DSLR before a major dive trip to Indonesia in 2007. I'm now going to sell my "fancy" Subal 5D housing (and all the paraphernalia) and move to a smaller, lighter underwater camera/housing set-up. So think before jumping in. Are you going to sell photographs? Are you diving several times a year? Do you want good photos for personal display? How much gear do you want to "lug" through airports, etc.? Lots of questions to answer.

#47 Roydive



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Posted 24 April 2012 - 07:45 AM

I guess this thread is pretty old now but reckon you can't go far wrong with Olympus