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Canon G9 & G7 housing - DIY 67mm lens adapter


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#1 BrianM

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Posted 11 July 2008 - 02:19 PM

Although I refer to the Canon G7, I have also carried out this modification on a Canon G9 housing (WP-DC21).

The Canon housing for the G7 & G9, like most other Canon housing doesn't have a filter thread on the lens port.
With previous Canon housings, Inon made a mount base so that lenses could be attached.
I checked with Inon to see if they have any plans to make a mount base for the Canon G7 housing (WP-DC11) and the answer was no. :ninja:
I think that some 3rd party mount bases and 67mm lens adapters are now available.

The standard Canon G7 housing (WP-DC11) looks like this.
Posted Image

Unlike the Olympus, Canon don't design their housings with filter threads. On the G7 housing, Canon didn't even make the lens port round. :P
Of course you could always purchase the more expensive but better built Ikelite housing, which comes with a filter thread.

I decided to see if I could fit a filter thread to the Canon housing, so purchased a stepping ring and removed the rear thread, then drilled four holes in it to line up with the existing screws in the lens port and fixed it there using the same screws.

After modification, the housing now looks like this.

Posted Image

If you are interested, here are the details of how I did it.

1) Obtain a 62mm to 67mm stepping ring.

2) Unless you know anyone with a lathe, remove the 62mm thread from the back of the ring by carefully cutting it off with a small hacksaw.

3) File down any large burrs

4) Place the ring on some fine grade Wet & Dry paper, and gently move it around until the back is completely smooth.

5) Find some clear cellophane sheet (or something see through) large enough ( 7cm x 9cm minimum size ) to cover the lens port on the housing.
I used cellophane from the packaging

6) Hold the cellophane over the lens port and using a sharp pin or needle, mark the centres of the two screws at the top and the two screws at the bottom, by pushing the pin through the cellophane.

Posted Image

After you have done this you will have a template with four holes in it. You may find it easier to see the holes needed for the next step, if you draw round them with a felt tip pen.

7) Cut two pieces of sellotape, about 2cm longer than the sides of your template, place them sticky side up on a flat surface, so that they form a cross, with one on top of the other.
Then place the stepping ring, smooth side down, in the centre of the cross, so that it sticks to the sellotape.
Next hold the template over the ring and carefully position it so that the holes you made in the template are now above and centred in the middle of the ring's rim.
Then fold the excess sellotape over the template locking it in place.

8) Remove the fours screws (two screws at the top and the two screws at the bottom) from the lens port and find a drill just a fraction bigger than the width of the screw including the thread.
Posted Image

Posted Image

9) Find a sharp metal spike to use as a centre punch and push it through the holes in the template to mark the centre of the holes to be drilled.

10) Remove the template from the ring. From the thread side of the ring, carefully drill the four holes through it.
If you nick the thread slightly when drilling, it doesn't matter too much provided that you clear the thread of any swarf of burrs afterwards.
You may want to get someone to help you hold the ring still on a piece of scrap wood, while you concentrate on the drilling.
Posted Image

11) Find another drill just fraction larger than the head of the screws. Use this drill to slightly countersink the holes you have made in the ring.
So that when the screws are in place, the head is level with the surface of the rim, otherwise you will not be able to fully screw your lens onto the ring.

12) Using some matt black spray paint, spray the back of the ring where the thread was removed and dab some paint around the holes in the front.
Posted Image

13) When the paint has dried, attach the ring to the lens port using the the four screws you removed earlier. Tighten the screws firmly to the same level of torque you used to remove the screws.

Posted Image

Hopefully if anyone from Canon or Inon reads this, they will realise what little effort is required to either design in a filter thread or sell an after market kit to do this.

While we wait for Canon or Inon to do something :)
Please feel free to copy my example, but if you do, please remember it's at your own risk, I take no responsibility for design or workmanship.

I used another stepping ring for a makeshift lens caddy and piece of crimped stainless steel for a reflector. Lately the reflector is redundant as I find it better to move the diffuser to the end of the macro lenses instead. If you are using an external strobe then you will have no use for either a reflector or a diffuser on the housing.

Posted Image

Posted Image
Brian

"Downgrade, downgrade, you know it makes sense!"
Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#2 jimbo1946

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Posted 13 July 2008 - 07:39 AM

Sweet. That was pretty ingenious. :)
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#3 mr_photo

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 07:16 AM

Your modification looks great! and needed!

I've got a G9 with the OEM case too and have been looking for a solution to the lens issue. I have some questions I was hoping you could answer:

- Does the G9 have any problems focusing with your macro lenses attached? Auto-focus work ok, or do you need to use the manual focus?

- Are the lenses pictures mounted to the top of housing the 2 macro lenses stacked up? Are you happy with these lenses?

- The screws for the housing look plenty long, you don't have any concern about flooding?

- Does the filed-down step-up ring put enough pressure on the housing lens to contribute to keeping the housing lens in place?

Thanks for your detailed instructions and pictures! I look forward to trying this myself.

Edited by mr_photo, 25 July 2008 - 07:17 AM.


#4 BrianM

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 07:25 AM

There are no problems with focusing either auto or manual, except manual focusing is a bit more fiddly, but that's the same on land.

I'm not sure what your 2nd question is about. I think you are referring to the extra ring I have used to hold the lenses when they are not being used, but yes I'm happy.

Remember you only remove 4 of the 6 screws, 2 of the screws holding the glass port on the housing remain in place using the full thread length. You lose a bit of thread length from the 4 screws that you use to screw the stepping ring on, but it's only about 1mm if you countersink the holes in the ring.

If the 4 screws are put back with sufficient tightness, I don't see a problem. Remember you still have the 2 screws you didn't remove holding it in place.
I think the real danger here is in over tightening the 4 screws when you put them back, as the housing threads are only acrylic/plastic and could shred or crack if you got carried away.

Most of your questions seem to be about robustness. Let me try and put your mind at rest. Firstly I have done this modification on two housings the WP-CD11 and the WP-DC21 both without incident. Normally I jump in with the camera and housing doing either backward roll or giant stride entry, so the modification is strong enough to withstand this stress. Since I first did the modifications in March 2007, I have done 148 dives with it and not had the even the slightest of leaks.
Though I'm sure you are aware that leaks can occur in many ways, from a trapped hair or piece of sand on the 'O' ring etc. So just as you would with a new housing and/or change of 'O' ring you should perform a leak test, by diving with the modified housing but without the camera in it first. I usually stuff it full of tissues and weight the housing down externally.
Brian

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Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#5 bmyates

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 07:40 AM

Very nice work, Brian! Thanks for the detailed inx and photos!

Bruce Yates
www.UnderwaterReflections.com
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#6 Timmoranuk

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 08:21 AM

Hello Brian,

I am seriously impressed with your ingenuity and the resulting photos 'sans' strobe too...

I have been using the Ike housing with the long port and stacked UCL 165 and 330. But I find it a fiddle to swap out the long / short port when switching between w/a and macro so I am considering a second rig like yours for dedicated macro.

The F.I.T. M67 adapter is all intents and purposes very similar to your excellent modification and seems to present close up glass as flush as possible to the port.

I was wondering to what extent you have to zoom past the vignetting with one or two UCL's fitted? I expect its more or less what I find with the Ike and long port.

Your thoughts on this would be appreciated before I splash out.

Thanks. Tim
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#7 BrianM

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 08:40 AM

Very nice work, Brian! Thanks for the detailed inx and photos!


My pleasure Bruce. I'm happy to share what little I know.
Brian

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Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#8 bmyates

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 08:42 AM

Brian,

I just spent some time going through your recent Malaysia gallery, and I have to say I am REALLY impressed with the macro stuff you're getting! Some of the imperial shrimp, false clown, and cowry/nudi shots are absolutely fantastic! (In your lingo, I think that would be "BRILLIANT!") :blink:

Did you shoot that entire gallery with this rig (G7 or G9 and no other external strobe/lighting)?!

If so, I agree with you that Inon really ought to start making an adapter like you have! In fact, they could/should use you as their poster boy for the effectiveness of their macro lenses on OEM housings!

To be honest with you, I bought the G9 and OEM housing mostly for topside use - on boats, etc. - and for an occasional dive when I didn't want to haul my whole DSLR rig down...but your photos are making me rethink that. As a dedicated macro rig, this is a viable alternative to a DSLR in a FAR smaller package!

Bruce Yates
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Canon 5DMkII in Aquatica, 1DsMkII in Seacam, G15 in RecSea...Inon Z240's...too many lenses
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damned fool about it." WC Fields


#9 BrianM

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 09:06 AM

Hello Brian,

I am seriously impressed with your ingenuity and the resulting photos 'sans' strobe too...

I have been using the Ike housing with the long port and stacked UCL 165 and 330. But I find it a fiddle to swap out the long / short port when switching between w/a and macro so I am considering a second rig like yours for dedicated macro.

The F.I.T. M67 adapter is all intents and purposes very similar to your excellent modification and seems to present close up glass as flush as possible to the port.

I was wondering to what extent you have to zoom past the vignetting with one or two UCL's fitted? I expect its more or less what I find with the Ike and long port.

Your thoughts on this would be appreciated before I splash out.

Thanks. Tim


Thanks Tim,

I'm not sure which adapter the F.I.T. is, but most of the adapters I've seen are designed to be used with external strobes. Initially because of tendinitis that I got in my wrists (which I think was from lugging around a heavy Ikelite housing), I tried to shoot U/W photos with minimum weight setup. After a while I loved the freedom it gave me to take shots in confined spaces, so I have continued without an external strobe, but if you use an external strobe then I'm sure that one of the off the shelf adapters would be fine.

Yes, you are correct that with the long port on the Canon housing you need to zoom a bit (15% to 20%) with a macro lens to avoid vignetting. In practice I usually zoom more than that anyway as it gives a greater working distance with macro subjects. With two lenses stacked you need to zoom more (about 30%)
With wet lenses, more chromatic aberration is observed at the edges of the lenses, so zooming and using the centre of the lenses does help reduce this problem. I would expect that using the long port on the Ikelite you would need to zoom to the same extent as on the Canon.
Brian

"Downgrade, downgrade, you know it makes sense!"
Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#10 BrianM

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 09:45 AM

Brian,

I just spent some time going through your recent Malaysia gallery, and I have to say I am REALLY impressed with the macro stuff you're getting! Some of the imperial shrimp, false clown, and cowry/nudi shots are absolutely fantastic! (In your lingo, I think that would be "BRILLIANT!") :)

Did you shoot that entire gallery with this rig (G7 or G9 and no other external strobe/lighting)?!

If so, I agree with you that Inon really ought to start making an adapter like you have! In fact, they could/should use you as their poster boy for the effectiveness of their macro lenses on OEM housings!

To be honest with you, I bought the G9 and OEM housing mostly for topside use - on boats, etc. - and for an occasional dive when I didn't want to haul my whole DSLR rig down...but your photos are making me rethink that. As a dedicated macro rig, this is a viable alternative to a DSLR in a FAR smaller package!


Thank you Bruce, I always like feedback either positive or negative. (in any lingo, even American. :blink: )

My profile on Flickr lets you know what cameras I used on various trips, but yes all of the recent Malaysia trip was shot with the G9 using ONLY the internal flash.

If Inon would like to make contact with me I would be delighted to help them.

Using the G9 and Canon housing for macro work is not difficult, there are a few tricks I use with the macro lenses, like moving the flash diffuser to the end of the macro lens, with a piece of lo-tech elastic. This stops the flash from vignetting over the macro lenses. If everyone tried a similar setup, I'm sure there would be some converts. The other thing I like is the cost, with new camera models coming out so quickly, I didn't want to invest a lot in a dedicated housing. This way it's fairly cheap to upgrade, even if you can't find a buyer for your old housing. :)
Brian

"Downgrade, downgrade, you know it makes sense!"
Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#11 bmyates

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 10:43 AM

If Inon would like to make contact with me I would be delighted to help them.


Brian - I know someone at Inon America, and just e-mailed him (with a link to this thread) asking if they would consider pursuing something like you have done. I'll let you know what response I get!

BTW, I also suggested that they consider you for their "Photographer of the Month"! :blink:

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#12 BrianM

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 01:13 PM

Thanks Bruce. Posted Image
Brian

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#13 bmyates

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 01:35 PM

Brian - I know someone at Inon America, and just e-mailed him (with a link to this thread) asking if they would consider pursuing something like you have done. I'll let you know what response I get!

BTW, I also suggested that they consider you for their "Photographer of the Month"! :)


As a follow-up to the above discussion, I heard back from Inon America, and they (not surprisingly, especially since apparently the G9 OEM housing is no longer being produced) can't/won't attempt to produce anything like this, although they acknowledge it as a valuable modification, and suggest that it is a great "garage project" that someone might produce for other G9 owners. (FWIW, I'd be very interested in buying a little "kit" if anybody in the U.S. wants to put it together - too bad you're "over there" Brian!) ^_^

As for Brian being considered for Inon's "Photog of the Month" we'll just have to wait and see... :)

Bruce Yates
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Canon 5DMkII in Aquatica, 1DsMkII in Seacam, G15 in RecSea...Inon Z240's...too many lenses
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damned fool about it." WC Fields


#14 BrianM

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 02:11 PM

As a follow-up to the above discussion, I heard back from Inon America, and they (not surprisingly, especially since apparently the G9 OEM housing is no longer being produced) can't/won't attempt to produce anything like this, although they acknowledge it as a valuable modification, and suggest that it is a great "garage project" that someone might produce for other G9 owners. (FWIW, I'd be very interested in buying a little "kit" if anybody in the U.S. wants to put it together - too bad you're "over there" Brian!) ^_^


I understand that Canon have stopped making the G9 housing, but I wonder if Inon's view is a little short sighted. Canon stopped making the G7 housing sometime ago, yet when the G9 was introduced the basic body shape of the housing was the same as the G7's. So my modification worked on the next generation just as well. I think there are a few other Canon housings with the same port shape and size. Maybe the G10 will also be similar too. I wonder just how many Canon housing owners would have bought Inon lenses if Inon had a simple adapter kit when the G7 housing shape first came out. It's hardly rocket science to commission a stepping ring manufacturer to make the ring minus the rear thread and pre-drill the holes, then put it in a packet with 4 similar screws just a mm or two longer.

Bruce, you could always have a go at making one in your own garage, what have you got to lose by trying. If you mess it up, it will only cost you the price of the stepping ring.

Edited by BrianM, 31 July 2008 - 02:14 PM.

Brian

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#15 bmyates

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 03:09 PM

Bruce, you could always have a go at making one in your own garage, what have you got to lose by trying. If you mess it up, it will only cost you the price of the stepping ring.


That's probably exactly what I'll do... ^_^

Bruce Yates
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Canon 5DMkII in Aquatica, 1DsMkII in Seacam, G15 in RecSea...Inon Z240's...too many lenses
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damned fool about it." WC Fields


#16 mr_photo

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 03:17 PM

Brian and Bruce,

I am in the states and made a go of this project this past weekend and eventually had some success. Of course, now I have to wait for my newly purchased lenses to arrive (inon macro and wide-angle).

Some things I noted during construction:

1 - Using a hack saw to remove the 62mm ring was not particularly difficult. I secured the ring vertically in a table vice and had no issues with bending or crushing the ring. Just be careful not to tighten too much.

2 - I attempted to use the cellophane sheet method that Brian described, but had a tough time converting that template to the ring. Instead, I cut a file folder (or other rigid paper) in a 67mm circle, using the lens as a stencil; I also left a little tab on the circle as a finger hold (see picture below). Then I transferred the template from the stencil to the paper circle and glued the circle to the flat part of the step up ring. Using this method, I now had a clear and accurate template, and a natural guide for the drill bit once I got through the paper layer.

IMG_4543_copy.jpg

3 - Brian's instructions recommend using a center punch to mark the holes. My first go around I actually used the center punch to create a divot for the drill, but might have been over zealous as it warped the ring significantly. Be gentle, it's delicate!

4 - Order more Step-up rings than just 1! digitalfotoclub.com has them for $4.00 a piece, so stock up.

I'll return back some time in the next couple weeks when I get my lenses with some results.

Thanks again for this post Brian!

#17 BrianM

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 03:43 PM

Yes, the template can be done in many ways, but it's very important to get the centre of the holes you are going to drill marked exactly. If you are off slightly in the marking or the drilling, then you will find it difficult to screw the ring on latter as the holes wont line up with holes on the port. If this occurs you may have to make 1 or 2 holes slightly wider, which weakens the fit as there is not a lot of metal to play with. I could have used a bigger stepping ring say a 58m - 67mm which would be stronger, but the ring would then vignette the port when the camera is zoomed out to full wide angle.

As you say, it would be a good idea to buy a couple of rings in case you don't get it perfect the first time.
Brian

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Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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#18 bmyates

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Posted 01 August 2008 - 08:24 AM

Just to give people an idea how much you can save by doing this simple project, the only place I could find that sells a ready-made 67mm lens adapter for the G9 is in the Netherlands, and it costs - when you add shipping and do the currency conversion from Euros to $US - about $114!!! :) Not to mention the fact that it is much bulkier! Brian's solution is much more simple and elegant!

In that context, buying a couple of $4 step rings seems like a pretty darned good deal! ^_^

Edited by bmyates, 01 August 2008 - 08:29 AM.

Bruce Yates
www.UnderwaterReflections.com
Canon 5DMkII in Aquatica, 1DsMkII in Seacam, G15 in RecSea...Inon Z240's...too many lenses
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damned fool about it." WC Fields


#19 scubariga

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Posted 10 August 2008 - 09:36 AM

Just to give people an idea how much you can save by doing this simple project, the only place I could find that sells a ready-made 67mm lens adapter for the G9 is in the Netherlands, and it costs - when you add shipping and do the currency conversion from Euros to $US - about $114!!! :) Not to mention the fact that it is much bulkier! Brian's solution is much more simple and elegant!

In that context, buying a couple of $4 step rings seems like a pretty darned good deal! :drink:



Hi everybody,

Very interesting discussion for me, I also have a G7 and the canon housing.
Last week I bought a brand new adapter for Inon lenses, and diffuser fitted perfect (without any screws, it just clicks on with an O-ring).
I've tested the ucl-330 but was planning to buy the ucl-165 (didn't tested the 165 yet).

Normally the closer you get to the object, the more you get troubles with shadow. The 330 is more flexible in distance and focussing right?

Can I get good pictures (no shadows) with one ucl-165 mounted with the standard diffuser?

thanks in advance!!

cheers
scubariga
I use a Canon G7, with hacked firmware(CDHK) and one Inon UCL-165 macrolens

#20 BrianM

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Posted 10 August 2008 - 10:11 AM

Hi everybody,

Very interesting discussion for me, I also have a G7 and the canon housing.
Last week I bought a brand new adapter for Inon lenses, and diffuser fitted perfect (without any screws, it just clicks on with an O-ring).
I've tested the ucl-330 but was planning to buy the ucl-165 (didn't tested the 165 yet).

Normally the closer you get to the object, the more you get troubles with shadow. The 330 is more flexible in distance and focussing right?

Can I get good pictures (no shadows) with one ucl-165 mounted with the standard diffuser?

thanks in advance!!

cheers
scubariga


I'm not sure which adapter you are using for your Inon lenses, so it's difficult to understand how it works exactly. Can you still shoot with the internal flash or do you need an external strobe with it?

I have used two Inon UCL-165 lenses stacked together and to avoid getting shadows I just move the diffuser to the end of the lenses. In practice this is done by two holes in the diffuser and piece of elastic string.

The UCL-165 has twice the magnification of the UCL-330, which is what you need if you are doing macro.
This is because minimum focus distance with the 330 is 10cm and with the 165 is 6cm, so you can focus much closer with the 165 you get more magnification.
http://www.oceanopti...oseuplense.html
Brian

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Canon G9 & G7 in modified Canon WP-DC21 & WP-DC11 housings, 2 x Inon UCL-165 macro lens, no strobe, just internal flash.

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