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


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#21 Rud-gr

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 06:26 AM

I bought a S40 last year with the Canon underwaterhouse. Makes very decent pictures without strobes if you manually adjust the whitebalance every 15 feet of depth or so. You can check some of the shots at Rud-gr.com, look for the portfolio>scuba.
However, adjusting the WB makes you feel like playing a Nintendo underwater and focussing is somewhat stressfull when you're, like me, used to handling professional camera's.
Having a good buddy with a decent diving lamp makes shooting twice as fun and deliveres some amazing shots now and then.
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#22 PhotoNut

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 10:12 AM

I bought a S40 last year with the Canon underwaterhouse. Makes very decent pictures without strobes if you manually adjust the whitebalance every 15 feet of depth or so.

Nice pictures - all two of them. Do you have any more?
Please explain how do you manually adjust the whitebalance. You definitely got some nice colors.
Thanks in advance.

#23 barilhu

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Posted 04 February 2004 - 09:47 AM

Hi!

I currently have a Canon S400 with a bonica slave strobe. I had a flood (MY FAULT) in a recent dive (it is at the repair shop right now).
It takes great pictures, but now that I have more experience I would buy something else.

The S400 is very compact, great during the dive. The macro is excellent. The casing includes a flash diffuser. You can access all the function while underwater.

Disadvantage: Cannot add telephoto or wide angle on land. Cannot easily add converstion lens on the housing. Can't remove the preflash.

I use my slave strobe using the FEL mode (flash exposure lock). You first shoot to set the FEL mode than wait for the strobe to recharge and than shoot the real picture. Long process but it works well. I even replace the flash diffuser on the housing with a mirror to make sure the strobe will detect the light from the camera internal flash.

Now I'm looking for a digital camera that I can shoot RAw with and that will work automaticly with my strobe. Any suggestions? :?:

Hugues

#24 Simon K.

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Posted 05 February 2004 - 02:07 AM

I bought a S40 last year with the Canon underwaterhouse. Makes very decent pictures without strobes if you manually adjust the whitebalance every 15 feet of depth or so. You can check some of the shots at <a href='http://www.rud-gr.com' target='_blank'>Rud-gr.com</a>, look for the portfolio>scuba.
However, adjusting the WB makes you feel like playing a Nintendo underwater and focussing is somewhat stressfull when you're, like me, used to handling professional camera's.
Having a good buddy with a decent diving lamp makes shooting twice as fun and deliveres some amazing shots now and then.


If you dont want the stress: Shoot RAW and adjust the WB later on the computer (Best is PS Camera RAW / Or PS CS because you can also adjust the Exposure what you cant do with any other RAW Converter with Canon S-Series RAWs)

Simon

#25 Periclimenes

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 05:33 AM

Does anyone have any thing to say about the 5050 vs. the 5060? This will be quite the splurge for me so any info at this point would be greatly appreciated. Other models/ set ups I should be considering at this point? (05/04).

Thanks.

#26 nathan4485

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 09:46 AM

I am looking for a great above water camera which I will be able to find proper undrewater housings for. So I started with looking for a good camera and with a friend came up with these seven: Canon G5, Fujifilms7000, Nikon coolpix S700, Canon PowershotS1 IS,OlymupsC-750 ultra zoom, Kodax Easyshare DX6490,Fujifilmfinepix5000, Dimage DZ2. So tell me what you think about these diff. cameras and give me advice about which one has the best features for above/undre water water photogaphy. And of course which has the best housing at the most reasonable price.

#27 MikeVeitch

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 11:11 AM

Personally i like Olympuses for underwater use.
The 5050 or whatever the newest one in that range is is probably best.
Olympus seems to have the best manual control features of any product, full manual very important for underwater use.
Light and Motion makes a great housing for Olympuses with a real hot shoe strobe connection as opposed to the crappy slave functions found with other housings. Little more expensive but if you want results is best to pay the diff. But if you are just doing one or two dive trips a year and just looking for some photos to show your friends and a camera that is easy to use and carry around then one of the cheaper models with less functionality is fine.

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#28 james

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 11:38 AM

Ikelite housings for Olympus cameras provide true camera to strobe automatic TTL control using an Ikelite sync cord. This is a bit more affordable of a setup and one that will provide hours of fun and plenty of room to grow.

Cheers
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#29 MikeVeitch

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 12:01 PM

Great to hear Ikelite has adopted a proper connection. I have an ikelite housing for one of my film SLR cameras and never had any real problems that weren't user error.
So i will change my tune, for a first time housing, or anytime really, go Ikelite, affordable and reliable.

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#30 ying

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Posted 06 October 2004 - 09:29 PM

hie...i'm pretty interested with underwater photography. So planning to get a camera that will be good for both land and water usage.

I've looked into canon s70..however i found that the underwater casing for canon's camera are pretty limited. It can't go more than 30ft?

Any recommendation for me?
thanks

#31 Simon K.

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Posted 06 October 2004 - 11:50 PM

Hi Ying,

I'm not sure about the housing for the S70 but the housings for the S30-S50 was rated to 30 meters (and i took it to 40m without problems) are you sure you don't mix up ft and meters?

Simon

#32 ying

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Posted 10 November 2004 - 04:08 AM

i've got mixed up...
s70 case could support up to 40m / 130 ft max :D

How's the S series camara performance underwater?

#33 Arnon_Ayal

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Posted 10 November 2004 - 04:55 AM

Hi Ying,
I used the S30 and the S50 U/W (and also a little bit on land)
In general the S series have a good optic and they give you all the options with the parameters of the photography, almost as DSLR another advance is the size of them.
Two problems with thus cameras I was notice:
1. Very poor battery, it enough for less then two dives so you have to open the housing after each dive.
2. The macro is not so good.
Arnon Ayal www.arnonayal.com
Nikon D200, Ikelite housing, Dual SB105.

#34 tie

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 04:44 PM

Can someone explain the forward compatibility of the Inon 180 strobe, if I buy it now for a P&S? Will this strobe work with a DSLR (even if only using optical trigger through a clear housing like Ikelite's)?

I like the price, size and simplicity of this strobe, although I realize Ikelite strobes will be TTLable with Ikelite housings.

Edit: I figured it out with a better search.
link

#35 TomH

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Posted 20 November 2004 - 10:49 PM

I have an Olympus C5060 and PT020 and must say I am disappointed.

I have sent the camera back to Olympus twice and the PT020 housing once.

Right out of the box the PT020 was bad. Putting the camera in the housing resulted in the camera zooming out without me touching the zoom lever plus some other related probs. Returned it to Smile Photo for a replacement and they sent me the same PT020 back. (Serial numbers don't lie I know where I won't buy from again) Talked to Olympus and they wanted BOTH the camera and the housing. Sent them both back. Olympus adjusted the zoom lever on the housing and did the standard clean and inspect.

Spent a month in Hawaii and was only able to use the camera and housing on 1 dive. The second time out, in 1 ft of water, the camera went nuts. When I turned it on it was in display mode and when I switched to P mode it lost focus and would not work under any conditions or modes either in or out of the housing.
The lens would slide out and stick. And when I tried to turn the camera off the lens would stay out and I never got a shutdown sound. If I went through the modes eventually I could get the lens to retract so I could put a lens cover on it. I talked to Oly tech support 2X. First they said "install the firmware upgrade. That'll fix it." The second time they talked me through a super secret reset button sequence. When that didn't work they said "send it in." When I got home, I procrastinated for a month before I wrote the detailed (4 page) letter describing the problem. And when I was writing the letter I brought the camera out to double check what I was telling them and the camera spontaneously started working again.

I don't know what caused the problem, but a wild idea is saying altitude (camera broke at sea level, after a month at 7K feet it starts working again) After reading another post I am wondering if the problem was PT020 related. Or at least created by the PT020.

But anyway, its a real shame because I had more fun with the 5060 on dry land than any other camera ever, except maybe my first Yashica SLR back in the '70s. And on the one dive I did make with it, I loved it! I must have taken 200 shots.

I just wish it was reliable.

Sorry
Tom

#36 Katfish

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Posted 22 November 2004 - 07:53 AM

Is there anywhere I can find a list off cameras that can provide RAW data. I am about to upgrade my old cannon powershot A40 for somehting else and have been told a camera with RAW capabilities is the way to go.
I am not a super serious photographer (ie don't want to cart around tonnes of camera kit) ideally I'm after someting small enough to clip off on the jacket but good enough to produce decent shots. I like the look of the Sony T1 size and Mpixels wise but it doesn't include RAW capability, any comments.

#37 derway

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Posted 22 November 2004 - 11:04 AM

Check out http://www.imaging-resource.com/ and http://dpreview.com/
Lots of good info on all the cameras.

The other thing you want, besides raw, is good manual modes, (full manual or Aperature Priority), which most of the lower end digis do not have.

Focus speed in low light, and shutter lag are also critical to a happy uw-photo experience.

So, I'd look at the sony V3, nikon 8400, or canon G6. Unclear how the G6 AF is in low light.

Don
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#38 ingha_j

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Posted 02 December 2004 - 05:06 AM

Hi
Would REALLY REALLY appreciate some buying advice! Want to get the other half a new digital camera for Xmas, which she can use on land and when diving...want to spend around 500 ($950) in total (camera and housing).... Have tried doing lots of reading, but am getting quite confused!
What seems to stand out at the moment is the Casio Exilim Zoom EX-Z40, with the EWC-40 housing.... anybody have any thoughts, or make a better recommendation??

Thanks so much!
J

#39 richorn

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Posted 02 December 2004 - 09:57 AM

Although I am shooting a dSLR, I am getting MY better half a digital camera for the holidays as well.

After much discussion and research on various websites, I have decided on the Fuji 810. I think this is a remarkable camera for the money (under $500 USD), and although she does not dive, the housing is very affordable making this a great "second" camera for me!

The camera has all of the functions a diver would want and need, has a 6.4 megapixel sensor, and seems to have an excellent lens.

The ONLY drawback I can see is that it only uses xD cards, but with memory as cheap as it is lately, even this expense is not out of line.

My humble $.02(US). Enjoy the hunt!
Richard

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#40 jams

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Posted 15 February 2005 - 10:13 AM

Hello everyone,

It's been a very entertaining, informative and unfortunately frustrating time for me over the last 3 weeks as I've been busy researching digital UW cameras and reading posts here and at digitaldiver and reviews whereever I could find them... Having started off with the Canon S60 in mind (as recommended by a local camera shop), I have now changed my mind more times than I have eaten this week and spent countless late nights cross-eyed at my computer trying to get a more definitive answer. So I am now doing what I should have done 2 weeks ago - signing on and asking...

I seem to have narrowed my selections down to the Canon S70, the Fuji F810 or the Sea&Sea Dx5000g. Let me explain my situation and needs... I am currently working as a dive instructor in Indonesia, but would like to supplement my income by offering a tag-along-for-the-day photo service to students and fun divers alike.

So my main concerns for a camera would be portability (hence a compact model), picture quality (do I even need to say that?), fast response times to catch those one-off moments both UW and on land and the ability to take a day's worth of shots preferably without opening the housing 3 times to change batteries/cards. I would also like it to be compact enough to take out of an evening with groups and not have to have it hanging around my neck.

As far as my photo skills go: on land I use a Nikon F65 (35mm) SLR which I am slowly becoming adept with, and UW I have been using a S&S mx5 film P+S and again starting to get consistently better results (great results when using a friends dx3100!)

All the cameras have some ability to function in manual mode, which I would like to be able to develop my abilities, all are quite compact and all are 5MP+ (enough for my needs, I feel?). However, here are my concerns:

S70 - chosen over the s60 due to improved reviews re: focus and shutter lag times, but still slow in that respect, also more expensive... However, picture quality seems best of bunch.

F810 - mixed reviews on pic quality, poor battery life, expensive xd cards, but cheap option and many comments around touting it as possible oly 5050 replacement...

dx5000g - not many reviews to go by, but mixed re pic quality again! super fast focus/shutter time and good battery life. Made by specifically UW company, with 55m housing...

As it goes, I'm leaning in the direction of the S&S 5000g, as a stable package that would easily take a strobe later in life, built by a reputable UW housing company. But the lack of feedback and reviews from current users worries me...

Along with any recommendations or advice you may have, can anyone tell me of a decent dealer in Vancouver, Canada where I am this week, or of one in or near to Bali, Indonesia, where I am based?

Sorry for the long post, gang. Thanks for reading it though. Hope to hear from someone soon!

James.