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Zen 100mm Dome...


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#21 DocTock

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 05:48 PM

Ryan - Thanks for the prompt, albiet unfortunate, answer!
I guess I'll be contacting you soon about a 6" or 8" dome then...
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#22 sterlingz

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 08:46 PM

Thanks Alex, for these test images, and thanks Ryan for the additional information on mounts offered. This dome has generated a lot of excitement in the current travel environment! It's great to have some firsthand info on its pros and cons. Alex, I look forward to your full review.

#23 Walt Stearns

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 05:45 AM

I was out last Friday off Jupiter. Conditions could have been better - 40 to 50 foot vis with a lot of fine particulate in the water. overcast skies made made available light look pretty flat.

Here are two samples shot with the Tokina 10-17 behind the Zen 100 in a general WA situation showing that in a pinch it can do the job should you be shooting something like a Super close WA of a clownfish and a manta shows up.

The first is at 17mm @ 125sec/f8
17mm_f8.jpg


with the second at full 10mm @ 200sec/f11
10mm_f11.jpg

#24 bkkchriss4

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 01:52 PM

Thanks for all the great info!

I decided to not go with the Zen 100mm and instead picked up a S&S Optical Dome. A bit more money but I think it will serve my needs better and hopefully (with some care) last a long time. The S&S is a bit smaller than typical 8/8.5" in. domes, so still packable in my current setup for travel.

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#25 tienuts

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 03:19 PM

I can't post them here from my .mac gallery, but some shots I took with the Zen 100 from the Blue Heron Bridge can be found here: Blue Heron Bridge - January 18

Using a Nikon D200 with Sea & Sea YS 110a
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#26 Tom_Kline

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Posted 07 February 2010 - 04:02 PM

A small dome, like the Zen 100mm, will allow you to take photos you cannot with a larger dome - the urchin shot above is good example - with the small urchin being the whole width of the frame even at 10mm. It is cheaper, lighter and easy to travel with. But it has some limitations, which are not specific to this dome, just a consequence of its shape.
Alex


Wow, that is a small urchin! :P
Looking forward to your report. I hope that it will include shots of your strobe set-ups.
Using the Seacam 6" dome (effectively an intermediate size between 4 and 8 inch FE domes) I try to use the dome's shade to minimize flare while using mainly one WA strobe centered over the port. I posted a set-up shot in your slave thread.

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#27 adamhanlon

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 06:53 AM

Hi all,

I received my Zen dome last week (Thanks again Alex!) and have been playing with it a bit.

I got it for close focus wide angle (CFWA) and wide angle macro (WAM) to get round the problems of trying to light things that are very close to the dome port. I'm shooting DX with my D2Xs in a subal Housing and have been using a Tokina 10-17 for some time. I've set the dome up with a 30mm extender, which seems OK, but this may well need additional adjustment.

My first impression of the dome was quite how small it is! When compared with an 8" dome it seems really tiny! It also seems very well made and finished.

In use, for CFWA, with a Kenko 1.4x converter, you can really feel the magnification working! You can get the front of the dome so close to the subject that you really can feel the magnification "pulling" the subject in:

Posted Image

Practically, this means as long as you can physically get the strobes in close enough, that lighting is fairly easy! With dry gloves, the strobes want to be where my hands are! The reduction in distance between the front of the dome and the subject helps with colour and sharpness.

For more general wide angle, I took the following series of shots. These were all shot at 1/60th which may be a bit slow, and I am getting used to the set up-so please don't take them as anything like definitive! The full image looks like this:

Posted Image

I've then taken crops of the left hand bottom corner, and zoomed them to 100%

1/60th at f5

Posted Image

1/60th at f6.3

Posted Image

1/60th at f7.1

Posted Image

1/60th at f8

Posted Image

1/60th at f9

Posted Image

1/60th at f10

Posted Image

Corner sharpness seems to suffer at large apertures!

I'll do some more playing-please note that these aren't definitive.

Hope this is of interest

Adam

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#28 davephdv

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Posted 16 February 2010 - 09:35 PM

I used this dome port for the first time Sunday. Very poor water conditions so couldn't eliminate backscatter. This shot was at F8 with a D300 and the Tokina 10-17

DSC_8327.jpg
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#29 davephdv

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 06:20 PM

Reading another tread reminded me of something. I was going to test this dome as a macro lens. Perhaps with a ext. ring.

Has anyone tried this 100 dome with a macro lens?
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#30 adamhanlon

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 10:24 PM

Hi Dave,

There is an interesting post from Steven Frink about using small domes (in this case a seacam one) with the Nikkor 60mm one in this post

I've got acold, but as soon a sit clears, Im going to have a play with the Zen one

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#31 davephdv

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 08:23 PM

Yes, I read that thread. Reminded me that I wanted to try this dome for wide angle. I've used domes for macro before. It would be nice to have such a small dome that could serve dual purposes.
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

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#32 adamhanlon

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 01:12 PM

After reading Stephen Frink post, on using a small dome with macro lenses, I thought I'd give it a try! I used it with a Nikon 60mm f2.8, on a very dark and gloomy day. I used a 33mm extension on my Subal housing. For reference purposes, the water temp was 4 degrees, and I lost all sensation in my hands for most of the dive (despite dry gloves!)

The port gives really nice results-sharp and it corrects the parallax that you get with conventional flat ports. I will definitely try it some more

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

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#33 Alex_Tattersall

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:28 PM

Great shots Adam! I've just ordered some 100mm Zen ports for the Nauticam housing to supply in the UK.
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#34 Ferg42

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 03:22 PM

Excellent news. That means that it could be a great port for travelling- both the 10-17mm and a 60mm macro all with one port. I love it!
Nice photos too. Especially like the first one. You're a brave man with those temperatures.
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#35 davephdv

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 07:41 PM

Did you use an extension ring with the dome when shooting the 60 mm lens.
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#36 adamhanlon

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 03:15 AM

Hi Dave,

Yes on my ND2, I added a 33mm one.

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#37 PRC

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 03:36 AM

Yes on my ND2, I added a 33mm one.


Hi Adam,

With your 60mm and the 100mm dome / 33mm ext is the 1:1 focus point of the lens inside the dome ?

If so are you going to be concerned of getting too close to a hard object & trashing the expensive dome (or indeed subject) ?

Paul C

kudos for you going in at 4C BTW

Edited by PRC, 28 February 2010 - 03:37 AM.

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#38 adamhanlon

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 04:41 AM

Hi Paul,

I haven't experimented per se!

Ken Rockwell gives the minimum focus distance (1:1) as 48mm for this lens. From the front of lens to subject.

With the Zen port and the 33mm extension, the lens does protrude into the port say 10mm. Given that the corners are less of a problem with a macro lens, getting the nodal point perfectly in line is not as much of an issue.

The port itself is also very shallow so the lens only has about 20-25mm in front of it.

So it is just about OK! Given that though-I don't see this as a replacement for a conventional flat port (or dome port for that matter!). I see it as an alternative, that is great for fish portraits etc, but would stick to a flat port for "true" macro. I think it gives a subtly different look to some types of picture, and that is exactly what I am after!

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#39 PRC

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 05:10 AM

I think it gives a subtly different look to some types of picture, and that is exactly what I am after!


OK thanks for that Adam - To be honest myself I can't justify the price tag for CFWA - just have to hope someone else is around at the time for a loaner!!

I know I have hit the front of my flat port a couple of times and would just cry if it were a $900 dome....

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#40 JACohen

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Posted 31 March 2010 - 11:27 PM

Alex,

Did you try the set up with a 10-17 and 1.4TC on the D700?

Julian
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