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SB80DX in Subal Housing


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#1 wesley

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Posted 18 June 2003 - 09:31 AM

I know its good for macro and not so good for wide angle but I would love to see some sample images of both taken with the SB80DX. Anyone have some they would like to share?

#2 yahsemtough

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Posted 18 June 2003 - 09:44 AM

See Alex Mustard's shots from the Caymans I believe his thread on that demonstrated shots using that flash.
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#3 jimbo1946

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Posted 18 June 2003 - 11:40 AM

I recently returned from Little Cayman, BWI, where I shot the D100 in an Aquatica housing with an SB80DX in a Subal Strobecase. I shot almost everything in Aperture Priority and TTL strobe. As I noted in an earlier post, I had some serious mechanical problems with the Subal Strobecase (did not affect water-tightness), but I did some jury-rigging and got it to work (Subal has since acknowledged to me that the earliest production output had some problems, and I'll be returning the unit to them for repair). I was very pleased overall with the D100/Aquatica/Subal setup. I used the 60mm and 105mm lenses only - no wide angle this time. Some of my images are posted at this site:

http://photos.yahoo.com/jimbo_limited

I agree that a single SB80DX is probably inadequate for serious wide angle, but for fish ID and macro, it was superb.
Jim Chambers
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Nikon D300 in Aquatica housing with housed SB800 flash.

#4 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 19 June 2003 - 01:19 AM

My pix are no longer online - free trial on mac.com expired.

There are a couple of my SB80DX shots at My D100 temporary page

And a few more (although quite a few of the same ones) in the latest issue of UWP Mag (issue 13). http://www.uwpmag.com

I use the SB80DX in an old SB26 housing (that offers no controls, unlike Jimbo's proper one) so I just leave it on DTTL. This has proved very reliable for macro and my favourite 28-70mm.

When I use my 17-35 and 16mm FE I switch to a pair of manual strobes. I have never tried the SB80DX with these lenses but fear it will struggle with coverage, metering to some extent, and power output.

Alex

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Nikon D4 (Subal housing). Nikon D7100 (Subal housing). Olympus EPL-5 (Nauticam housing).


#5 Kasey

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Posted 19 June 2003 - 02:30 AM

I've been considering this strobe as well to simplify my macro shooting. Alex, there is a great shot of a secretary belnny at about 1:1 on the YUP site. Shots like that usually benefit from +++ strobe power so you can push your aperture into the high 30s (at least), which partially makes up for the challenge of focusing at this range. Did you find that the SB80 gave you enough power to shoot good 1:1 at above f30? Also, I sometimes use a 2X teleconverter which sucks up another 2stops - do you think I'd have enough light?
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#6 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 19 June 2003 - 03:41 AM

I am still a relatively recent digital convert so I find that I always have more than enough light with the D100 because its slowest ISO is 200 and I am still used to Velvia!

I also let the SB80DX zoom - which increases the light by reducing the coverage with the macro lens.

I have just checked the original RAW file and I took that shot on f16 so I'm not basing this on much fact. Actually I took every picture on that dive on f16 @ 1/180th and on DTTL. Obviously I was having a lazy day!

Checking through my other blenny greater than 1:1 shots I have quite a few taken at f25 and f27 that are perfectly exposed. I think the 200 ISO makes a big difference for super macro and I may shoot film super macro on ISO 100 rather than 50 from now on! So I think that you should be fine with the SB80DX - I haven't run out of macro light yet.

Alex

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Nikon D4 (Subal housing). Nikon D7100 (Subal housing). Olympus EPL-5 (Nauticam housing).


#7 jimbo1946

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Posted 19 June 2003 - 05:41 PM

Alex made a very good point about letting the SB80DX zoom to match the focal length. At 105mm, the full-power GN (in feet) is 184 for ISO 100. For ISO 200 (the default ISO for the D100), the GN (in feet) is 184 x 1.4 = 258. That's on land. Underwater, dividing by 2 gives a GN of 129. Shooting manually with my trusty Nikonos V, I divided by 3, which gave me better results, but even if you divide by 3, you get an underwater GN of 86.

That's not bad! So the SB80DX is very good for macro, as I found.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Nikon always claimed that the U/W GN equals the topside GN divided by 2. Jim and Cathy Church claimed that the topside GN should more accurately be divided by 3. I experimented a lot and found that for me, 3 was a good number. The Nikon folks were always sensitive about this, and when anyone asked about it at a Nikonos Shootout, it made for an interesting time! Obviously, the number "2" served their purpose better in keeping up their published U/W guide numbers.
Jim Chambers
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Nikon D300 in Aquatica housing with housed SB800 flash.

#8 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 20 June 2003 - 02:13 AM

Good advice, Jimbo.

In my experience I find that dividing by 3 is better for greater than 50cm/2ft shooting and dividing the GN by 2 is better for shooting at about a foot (30cm).

Alexander Mustard - www.amustard.com - www.magic-filters.com
Nikon D4 (Subal housing). Nikon D7100 (Subal housing). Olympus EPL-5 (Nauticam housing).