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Member Since 25 Mar 2008
Offline Last Active Mar 14 2018 04:49 AM

Topics I've Started

1/125 for 30p instead of 1/60? (AX100/GATES)

19 June 2017 - 05:34 AM

We were diving Bonaire the last two weeks. While there, I asked John Wall of the Buddy Dive Photo Center if he had any recommendations for settings for underwater video. I use 4K/30p video exclusively.


He surprised me by suggesting 1/125 shutter speed instead of the 1/60 I had been using.


The  purpose, he said, was to reduce motion blur for moving subjects.


I wondered if that would reduce the light enough to cause problems, but the result with my AX100/Gates setup has been truly better in my amateur eyes. And not just a little bit - a lot!


Underwater video came out much better. I went back to using auto WB, auto GAIN/ISO and auto IRIS (F-stop), locking shutter speed at 1/125 and got some of the best video so far with that setup.


I tried it topside on flamingos and other subjects and was also well pleased.


I said to John well, if some's good more must be better, right? He said no, that if you increase the shutter speed beyond 1/125 you begin to get a "cathedral effect" where vertical light streaks appear in the video. I did observe this in shallow water at 1/125 when the top part of the scene was brightly lit, but the bottom area was darker.


There were a few circumstances where the visibility was poor that were not very good. Not sure how 1/60 would have done there as it was contrast that suffered. The camera still seemed to autofocus OK.


1/125 has now become my standard setting - I'm sure I will deviate back to 1/60 if circumstances require it.


This was news to me - I'd been using 1/60 for a couple of years.


Any comments or other advice?



A nasty Honduran surprise

05 April 2017 - 12:14 PM

We went diving at CocoView the last week in March, 2017. The resort and the diving were great. The boats were a bit crowded and would benefit from another divemaster in the water with sometimes more than a dozen divers. Food - good, rooms - good, staff - good. I’d return to the resort.

I won’t go back to Roatan or Honduras. Here’s why:

Entry into Roatan was painfully slow, taking more than 1-1/2 hours. Exit was worse, taking over 2 hours. All the time was spent standing in line waiting for the most egregious violations of privacy I’ve experienced: Full ten-finger fingerprinting, scan of passport and an extra photograph taken with glasses, hats etc removed. Exiting the island was the same process.

So for a total of 3-1/2 hours standing in line for this unnecessary abuse and violation of privacy we get into and out of the country.

If you refuse, the officious fingerprint/picture-taker told me, my options were only one: immediate deportation.

Some things to consider:

1) If Yahoo, other large companies, and yes, even governments cannot protect data, how can Honduras protect it? When it is stolen, could there be a better or more thorough identity theft opportunity for the bad guys? Probably not.

2) If Honduras is cheeky enough to require more data than we needed to give for a Global Entry pass into the US, what will stop them from asking for a DNA swab next time, or even a blood sample? I don’t think I’ll go back to find out. Example: four fingers and the passport photo are sufficient for US citizens to obtain Global Entry permits, compared with all ten fingers, the passport and an added photo for Honduras. Why? Because they can?

3) Roatan has thousands of cruise ship passengers every day. Are they demanding this kind of intrusive violation of privacy for each one of them? I doubt it.


It looks like divers are being discriminated against in a big way.

See ya, Roatan. Our fourth trip there is our last…