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Nikon D7000 Underwater


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#1 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 12:15 PM

I shot the Nikon D7000 underwater for the first time today, using the Nauticam housing that was shown at DEMA. Over the next week I will be reviewing it for Wetpixel, with dives in both cold water and (thankfully) warm!

Here is the housing (with camera inside +10-17mm) and Nauticam's acrylic mini-dome, on the side of the water this morning.

UK10_am_21461.jpg

And here am I with the rig (between dives) - it is impressively compact and light weight (unlike the photographer).

UK10_am_21467.jpg

It was quite a production getting it all to me from Vegas, and I am very grateful to Edward Lai, Peter Rowlands, Adam Hanlon, Ryan Canon, Alex Tattersall and Rob White (without any of that chain this wouldn't have been possible)! And also a big thank you to Eleonora for letting me use her camera!

I have to say it amazing to be testing this camera UNDERWATER already. There isn't even a detailed D7000 review on DPReview, yet! Serious kudos to Nauticam for not only having a housing to show at DEMA, but one that can be used in a cold English lake the next day!

My review will focus on the underwater use of the system and will cover both the housing and camera, since the D7000 introduces a low of new tech for Nikon users. I have pretty strong ideas on what it is important to test on this system, but please feel free to post any questions you want me to answer (in the review).
My review will focus more on stills than video, but Peter Rowlands will be joining me in the Red Sea and will be helping me to evaluate the video capability. I shot some today and it looks nice (but I need more expert eyes).

I won't answer too many questions until the review is done. Hopefully it should be done a week from today.

Alex

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


#2 Drew

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 12:17 PM

Tease! :)

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#3 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 12:26 PM

Fixed. I clicked the wrong button on the browser, Drew!

My dive buddy, Rob Bailey, has some underwater images of the housing. Which I will post later.

Alex

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


#4 adamhanlon

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 01:00 PM

Hi all,

There are only two of these housings in existence, and we are shortly going to have a field review of one of them here!

:)

Adam

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#5 lundysd

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 04:03 PM

You guys are killing me. I should be receiving the first production D7000 housing in the near future and will also be posting my thoughts.

..just don't tell me it sucks :)

#6 Stephen H.

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 04:50 PM

Truly outstanding to see a Camera being housed and testing this fast!

As someone seriously considering this camera (as one that will eventually be housed) I cannot wait for your review.

Steve
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#7 Drew

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 08:24 PM

Alex, if you have the time... try shooting a few medium portraits of fish that move with AF on. I'd like to see how the AF tracking for video works UW. What I've seen of the topside performance is not so great.

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#8 bigmac

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 10:59 PM

Thanks for sharing.

Waiting my D7000 arrive......


Cheer...

#9 Scubysnaps

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 11:08 PM

Waiting my D7000 arrive......


For any that are waiting for the body only, think of buying the kit as I sold the 18-105 lens on eBay within an hour of putting it up last night for 175 buy it now, wish I put it up for a higher price!

Edited by Scubysnaps, 23 November 2010 - 11:09 PM.

Cheers
Paul

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www.scubysnaps.com >)))>

#10 bigmac

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 01:39 AM

For any that are waiting for the body only, think of buying the kit as I sold the 18-105 lens on eBay within an hour of putting it up last night for 175 buy it now, wish I put it up for a higher price!

I mean waiting the NA-D7000 housing arrive not Camera. :)

#11 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 01:51 AM

We were able to buy body only in the UK. On the day of release here.
Alex

Just going to do some ISO tests (on land) - will post some UW images from yesterday, later.

Alex

p.s. Drew - your request in noted.

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


#12 loftus

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 02:57 AM

Just a comment on autofocus with video; my sense is that not all autofocus settings will work well underwater as Drew alludes to On the other hand used intelligently, choosing the correct settings and technique, I think it will work very well, at least it does for me, topside.
Autofocus is no different to autoexposure; if you ask the camera to make all the decisions, you're not going to get the right answer in some circumstances, but I think applying it intelligently as just another tool, it can work very well.
I know it's a lot to ask in one test Alex, as there are many variables, but it would be helpful if you can provide info as to which autofocus settings and technique work best for different situations.
Nikon D800, Nikon D7000, Nauticam, Inons, Subtronic Novas. Lens collection - 10-17, 15, 16, 16-35, 14-24, 24-70, 85, 18-200, 28-300, 70-200, 60 and 105, TC's. Macs with Aperture and Photoshop.

#13 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 05:24 AM

The ISO performance of the D7000 is impressive. I did some topside tests today, to confirm in more detail some of my conclusions from underwater yesterday (while chatting to Adam H on the phone!).

Unlike my D700 - which shows no noise from ISO 100-800, followed by a gradual increase in noise, the D7000 is different. Noise builds gradually with each successive rating, but even in the RAW files is never too ugly. And at high ISOs it is seriously impressive for a DX high megapixel camera. Wow! And any noise is easily contained in Lightroom 3 noise reduction (note Lightroom 3.2 can't read D7000 RAWs - I am using 3.3 RC).

For an extreme example, this is a JPG of a picchio (as our local woodpeckers are known). Shot at ISO 3200.
UK10_am_21822.jpg

I have uploaded the full resolution NORM-JPG straight from the camera on my website - for those who want to look at high ISO image quality at 100%. The file is 4MB.

Right click and save this link:


Please bear in mind this is ISO 3200 - straight from the camera. It is not perfect - but it is very impressive - to my eye.

Alex

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


#14 ssra30

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 08:01 AM

I am very impressed (even if Drew is not :) ).
I think this is going to be a good camera to replace my D2X after having to pay 500,000 rupiahs on Lion Air each way from Manado to Sorong recently :)
I am looking forward to a lighter traveling day!

#15 acuevas

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 11:22 AM

The ISO performance of the D7000 is impressive. I did some topside tests today, to confirm in more detail some of my conclusions from underwater yesterday (while chatting to Adam H on the phone!).

Unlike my D700 - which shows no noise from ISO 100-800, followed by a gradual increase in noise, the D7000 is different. Noise builds gradually with each successive rating, but even in the RAW files is never too ugly. And at high ISOs it is seriously impressive for a DX high megapixel camera. Wow! And any noise is easily contained in Lightroom 3 noise reduction (note Lightroom 3.2 can't read D7000 RAWs - I am using 3.3 RC).

For an extreme example, this is a JPG of a picchio (as our local woodpeckers are known). Shot at ISO 3200.
UK10_am_21822.jpg

I have uploaded the full resolution NORM-JPG straight from the camera on my website - for those who want to look at high ISO image quality at 100%. The file is 4MB.

Right click and save this link:


Please bear in mind this is ISO 3200 - straight from the camera. It is not perfect - but it is very impressive - to my eye.

Alex


This is a very impressive camera, it's very close to the D700 on image quality.
Looking the comparison a DxOMark, the ISO performance of the D7000 is almost identical as the D700, where it gets a little short is in Color Sensitivity.
Tonal Range and Dynamic Range is very close.

Adding that the D7000 it's sheaper and that the Tokina 10-17 can be used with this camera, now I'm not so sure that the D700 will be my next camera. :)
Regards
Andres Cuevas


Nikon D7000, Tokina 10-17, Aquatica AD7000, Aquatica Mini Dome, 2xInon Z-240 type 4.
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#16 Drew

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 11:35 AM

Oh Boi
You do know that you'll save maybe 1.5 kg by going to non-pro bodies (based on 1 body, 1 housing, 1 charger with 2 batteries)? You do save on bulk as well but the weight savings is minimal especially if you don't carry the cameras in your cabin luggage. I'm afraid it's like leaving out your 3 red shirts and 2 yellow shirts. :)

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#17 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 11:43 AM

Here is a photo of the rig in action from yesterday, taken by my buddy Rob Bailey:

Alex_Mustard_D7000a_by_Robert_Bailey.jpg

The strobes are mounted on the underside of the housing - because I didn't have any Nauticam strobe mounting balls - and had to screw Ultralight balls into the tripod mounts on the base of the housing. I'll have the correct strobe mounts in the Red Sea. It really is an impressively compact rig.

Alex

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


#18 tdpriest

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 01:47 PM

What an attractive dive site!

Now, I find the big D300s Nauticam very comfortable to use: is the D7000 comfortable, or are some of the controls a bit awkward? It looks a bit cramped on the right-hand side in Rob's photograph. Answers awaited at your convenience...

Tim

:)

#19 manatee19

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 04:37 PM

You willl probably do it but it would be interesting to see a side-by-side comparison of the D700 vs the D7000 in low light conditions.

Saw this baby at DEMA and boy did Nauticam came on lightning fast on this new camera.

Enjoy

Michel
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#20 ssra30

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 05:21 PM

Oh Boi
You do know that you'll save maybe 1.5 kg by going to non-pro bodies (based on 1 body, 1 housing, 1 charger with 2 batteries)? You do save on bulk as well but the weight savings is minimal especially if you don't carry the cameras in your cabin luggage. I'm afraid it's like leaving out your 3 red shirts and 2 yellow shirts. :)


hey, 1.5 kg would be a saving of a tad over 24000 rupiah one way. For round trip Manado-Sorong, that's equavalent to 2 cans of diet cokes and a few candies. The saving is piling up very quickly with D7000 :) Actually, I am just tired of lugging around Pro body/bigger housing but did not think that D300s/D700 was worth hazzle to upgrade over D2X but D7000 is promising.