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Expodisc White Balance Filter


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#101 3@5

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 01:17 PM

...snip...
I have added a liberal helping of good ol' duct tape. See how long it is before this becomes a wad of gooey gunk attracting all sorts of dust and crap to the cover!! Easy to replace though.
...snip..

a bit off topic but it might be handy:
you might want to try this tape, apparently it takes a lot longer to become a wad of gooey stuff. it's used on planes so it must be solid...
http://www.rescuetape.com/
btw i have not tried it, cos it's not easy to get in europe, but if you do try it i'd be interested to know the results
/paul
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#102 CamDiver

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 02:29 PM

Mike,
I have a connector screwed directly into the hard plastic cover which then clips on to my BCD when diving. I hate that transition period when handing the cam back into the boat especially when unprotected glass comes into the equation.

Dean, never had a problem with the springy black thing. If its good enough for the seals it's good enough for me. By seals I meant that the seals at Marwell zoo who's food is kept safe in a fridge freezer arrazy without shelves. No I wasn't referring to a group of grown men all dressed in black shouting gung ho slogans as they march to breakfast.

3@5, if you have problems getting that tape in France, which looks the mutts nuts by the way, imagine the problems I will face trying to get it here in Palau!! I have seen and used what is called Helicopter Tape in the past which was basically, at the time, being used to line the leading edge of a Formula Renault race car's front wing to reduce the bug damage when travelling at speed.

To all, will post results soonest. Crappy, crappy weather here in Palau at the mo so at least I can do low light comparisons today.

Cheers,
Mark.

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#103 pablo

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 04:28 PM

I was wondering what might have happened on this, given the other 5-page thread about the Expodisc. I am interested in the Expodisc too, but since I have an Ikelite housing (for my Sony SR1) I would have to use an external mount of some sort. I talked to ExpoImages and they don't have an U/W version available. They have considered it and said they are experimenting but have no projected date or anything like that.

I noted that they have the "cap" versions now, which work like a lens cover. I'm wondering about the possibility of borrowing from your idea, Mark, but finding some way to deal with the cap style model they have. I've ordered one for use topside but after I see it I'll see if I can come up with some way to seal it (after buying a larger version for the port size of my housing - the camera itself is a 2.5" diameter outside and the housing is 3" outside diameter).

Whatever happened to the issue of getting a more "red" image that desired below 30 feet or so? I didn't read much of anything new on the other thread about it after it was brought up. The ExpoImages person I talked to mentioned that without me even bringing it up when I asked about an underwater version of their filter, so there must have been some input from others to the company.

I have noted that they make two versions: 1) "Portrait" style which "warms" up the balance, and 2) "White Balance" which is I suspect is the correct animal to use for U/W video. So if someone did get the wrong version of the filter it seems that it could have caused a "red" effect compared to simple WB?

#104 CamDiver

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 10:30 PM

Here's the first back to back test images. In my opinion the Expodisc gives a colder (my preference) image without having the red wash over the reef as many of the DV / HDV cams get when WB is set manually. You can see a slightly warmer feel to the image balanced on the dive slate. Today was an exceptionally bad dive day in Palau. Very dark conditions. Both of these images were shot at this depth because I couldn't get manual WB using the slate at greater depth.

Both images shot at f1.6 @ 1/60th with 15Db gain.......yeah, really crappy day.

Pablo, as the ad says, "Just Do It"..........don't waste time waiting for Expoimaging to release an underwater version. They been saying that for a long time now. The filters are relatively cheap, if water starts to noticeably deteriorate the condition of the elements heck they are just plastic, strip the thing down, clean it and start again. Thats what I aim to do.

Thoughts,
Mark.

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- A Natural History Documentary -


#105 3@5

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 11:59 PM

...snip...
3@5, if you have problems getting that tape in France, which looks the mutts nuts by the way, imagine the problems I will face trying to get it here in Palau!! I
...snip

oops ;) hadn't seen that....
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#106 wagsy

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 02:12 AM

Mark you are the man.
Cheers for posting that.

Shall I get one or not???
I' like me flip macro to much.
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#107 MikeVeitch

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 02:28 AM

i like the colours on the bottom picture better....

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#108 videodan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 03:43 AM

Both of these images were shot at this depth because I couldn't get manual WB using the slate at greater depth.

Mark, you were able to white balance much deeper using the Expodisc, correct? This is what I've been saying from the beginning. Using the Expodisc will allow you to get a very good white balance lock far deeper that you could without it. Mine is an absolute nescessity for shooting below 50', which is most of my diving.
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#109 MikeVeitch

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 04:18 AM

Mark, you were able to white balance much deeper using the Expodisc, correct? This is what I've been saying from the beginning. Using the Expodisc will allow you to get a very good white balance lock far deeper that you could without it. Mine is an absolute nescessity for shooting below 50', which is most of my diving.
Dan



Yep, that is what i want to know as well... that is the feature Dan originally mentioned when he introd the Expodisc here that captured my attention the most

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#110 CamDiver

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 02:50 PM

The only way I could get a WB lock using the Expodisc at deeper than 50ft was to slow the cam down to 1/30th. This was an exceptionally bad day in Palau. The attached still shows the result of that WB test. More grain than the Sahara and exploded reds which I do not like at all. I had to point the camera toward the surface as that was the only source of any light, albeit very faint. I thing this will be a definite bonus filter on clear, sunny days. Hopefully I won't have too long to wait until I can test in those conditions.

Cheers,
Mark.

f1.6 @ 1/30th with 18Db gain @ 18m / 54fsw +-

The Sharks of the Forgotten Islands

- A Natural History Documentary -


#111 videodan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 04:39 PM

I almost always white balance on the sun, except for close-ups. I have not had any issues with too much red or any other color. Below are frame grabs shot at 92' (28M) on a sunny day with great vis. This was well below the depth where I can normally lock white balance, except with Expodisc. These three frame grabs have absolutely no processing except for "save as JPEG". This was a recent Goliath Grouper aggregation in Florida. I would say these have accurate, and excellent color, especially for the depth.
Dan

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image
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#112 videodan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 05:29 PM

Here's a tip I forgot to mention, and this should help with any camera. White balance often when descending deep, at least every 20-30'. You cannot go straight to 90' or more and then expect to manual white balance at the bottom. Do it incrementally and it will help a lot. Below are two un-processed frame grabs that I shot three days ago in somewhat murky water at 60' (18M) with good sun. It's just sand and Lemon Sharks so there is not much natural color, more of a neutral scene for comparison. It looks awesome on an HDTV, and of course it was white balanced with Expodisc.
Dan

Posted Image

Posted Image
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#113 wagsy

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 05:32 PM

Dan they look great.

We have those here but allot have been taken out by the Recreational Fish Heads. ;)
Cods that is...

Looks like I may have to get a Expodisk and mount it up like Mark has as I like my flip macro too much.
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#114 CamDiver

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 05:46 PM

Hey videodan,
Looking good. Maybe when the weather allows I'll be able to post some stuff from the deeper parts of Blue Corner and other benchmark sites here in Palau.

Wagsy, you're gonna have more filters and options on your housing than Mad Max had guns to keep that bald twat away from the gas pumps!! Good on ya. Go for the External mounted disc / square, nothing ventured nothing gained. Look forward to see what you get with it.

Mark.

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#115 videodan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 05:54 PM

Thanks Wagsy. I've been waiting for others to try it, as I'm getting great results with it, as viewed on three different HDTV's and one HD Projector. I'm seeing it being called controversial, but I don't agree with that based on my experiences. Good luck to Mark, and I hope the vis clears up soon.
Dan
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#116 shawnh

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 06:18 PM

Folks, i have mine fully built but haven't used yet. i think it is time to pull it out. i am diving the bahamas in two weeks and won't need my macro flip. I'll just swap it out and see how it rolls.

Dan, where you been lately...we missed you:) Also, very good colors with no POST. I usually get pinker in those conditions. I think for blue and low color reef, this may be the ticket. Honestly, for vibrant and shallower i have heard some negative feedback.

Thoughts?
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#117 CamDiver

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 06:30 PM

Hi shawnh,
Did you ever get the audio CD I sent you a few months back? If so how do you like the sounds? You using any of them for your clips?

If not it was b4 chrimbo and the mail from Palau is never the best at any time. Could still be on its way to you.

Cheers,
Mark.

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- A Natural History Documentary -


#118 videodan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 06:56 PM

Hi Shawn, I've been busy diving, editing, working on a broadcast contract (maybe more on this in the future), and too many hours at my day job. I forgot you guys are coming here soon to go on the Shearwater. If you have any free time we can go dive our local Lemon Shark aggregation, which is getting better by the day. All natural and no feeding whatsoever! It usually lasts for 6 weeks or so. Plenty of time left. PM me if you want to go. As far as Expodisc goes, I don't shoot without it anymore. While I don't usually dive shallower than about 50', I have shot near the surface with great results. I have also shot vibrant reefs close up and wide angle with equally good results. Don't know why others may be having difficulties. Maybe using the warming filter by mistake, or putting it in backwards, or maybe it's their white balancing method, I really don't know. I just know it works for me.
Dan
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#119 sjspeck

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 07:22 PM

Mark, (or anyone else)

How thick is the 4x4 Expodisc? I'd like to get one to slide in and out of my EVO front port if possible. Otherwise I may engineer a flip down of some sort.

thx,

#120 wagsy

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 07:35 PM

I made a WB flip but it's not working to good. ;)
Having something to go infront of the Phenom port could be a handfull.

Congrats Dan on ya broadcasts gig. We are pitching stuff right now to some companies to try and get some GIGs going.
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