Jump to content


Member Since 04 Jan 2009
Offline Last Active Apr 21 2015 02:18 AM

#331583 Housing Sentry Vacuum Seal

Posted by Aussiebyron on 19 May 2013 - 06:10 AM

I actually put my housing together and vacuum seal it the night before or hours before I am diving. Then I test to see if there is a vacuum just before I go out on the boat.  If the seal is going to fail it will most likely be during this time. I dont see the point in an electronic part to keep monitoring the vacuum during the dive especially if it cost an extra $200. 


Regards Mark

#330546 Critique appreciated

Posted by Aussiebyron on 29 April 2013 - 04:56 PM

I personally would be trying to darken the back ground more especially if your at 30m and you have a sunburst or at that depth a sun blob coming through.  I feel that the Lionfish fills up too much of the frame and a bit of the low fins are right on the boarder of the frame.


As other have said a wider aperture like f8-f10 for better depth of field.  I would be shooting at your lowest ISO and shooting a higer shutter speed or the highest you have which syncs with your strobes.  Higher shutter speed darkens the background and I feel gives a better colour graduation when you have the Sun in the back ground.  Regarding strobes try the same shot in TTL and then try manual strobes with 3/4 power and then full power.  I prefer to shoot manual for wide as you know what they are going to do everytime you shoot. 


Have you tried just shooting the 8mm Fisheye without the TC? Just have to get use to getting really close and having good strobe placement.


Write down some different setting on a slate and when your in a position to do so and take a few shots with those different settings and when your back infront of a computer decide what setting you like best and go from there. 


Regards Mark

#330484 Leopard Sharks

Posted by Aussiebyron on 28 April 2013 - 08:00 PM

Here is a collection of Leopard Sharks (aka Zebra Sharks to those in the USA) taken at Julian Rocks, Byron Bay, Australia. These graceful and often friendly Sharks visit every summer and often in large numbers.


Unedited shots taken with the Nikon D7000 and Tokina 10-17mm or Samyang 8mm.













And my current favourite:





Cheers Mark

#330483 Wobbegongs

Posted by Aussiebyron on 28 April 2013 - 07:49 PM

Here is a collection of Wobbegong images taken recently at Julian Rocks, Byron Bay, Australia.  The site in famous for Wobbegongs and the locals dont bother to point them out to people as they are huge numbers of them everywhere all year round.


Here are some unedited shots taken with a Nikon D7000 and either the Tokina 10-17mm or the Samyang 8mm:







Cheers Mark

#329961 I hate the dead blue faced zombie diver photos

Posted by Aussiebyron on 18 April 2013 - 10:50 PM

Don are you after something along the lines of these shots?


Unedited uncropped






Regards Mark


Don the whole idea of using filters on strobes is due to the higher colour temp of Inon strobes (5500K) when compared with the lower temp and warmer looking Ikelites (4900k).  This is the major reason why people who shoot alot of wideangle prefer to use the bigger and heavier Ikelites in blue water diving. 


I agree with Giles if your not getting close enough to the Subject your not getting enough light onto the subject and a colour filter will not do much to bring out natural skin colour. As you know the distance a strobe can light up a subject is greatly reduced when shooting through water and its a bit like trying to lighten up someones face when they are standing in a shadow. You need direct light on the face not a colour correction filter.


This is why alot of people use a Fisheye lens. Not because of the distortion it gives but the ability to get very close to the subject while not filling the whole frame with the subject. This allows then enough strobe light to light the whole subject.


My examples above are shot with the Tokina 10-17mm @ 10mm.  I am close to the subject, the subject is getting lite up by the strobes and also there is little distortion as the isnt too close to the lens. 


I agree with Giles again if your after shots of people in the water ask people before hand if they wouldnt mind. I dont think I have had someone yet to refuse me taking their photo underwater.


So borrow a fisheye like the Tokina 10-17mm, ask your potential models if they are willing, and get close as you can while still fitting them whole in the frame and I bet you wont be having the blue faced zombie faces again.


Regards Mark

#328548 Tokina 10-17 for sharks. mini dome or 8"?

Posted by Aussiebyron on 25 March 2013 - 05:34 AM

Another thing to consider that if you went with a Zeni min dome it is only designed for the Tokina 10-17mm with the Ikelite setups.  If you go with the Ikelite 8 inch dome you can use a huge range of lenses with the addition of suitable extension rings.  By looking at that I believe the most versatile dome for your Ikelite would be the 8inch dome and then choose which lens you want to house it. 


Honestly if you cant shoot a shark with a 10-17mm as its too far away when its going to be too far away to get any light from your strobes on it.  So you might as well shoot strobeless with the Tokina 10-17mm and crop to get the same ordinary dull  image ( unless your trying to get a silhouette image).  


If your after some sort of general purpose lens which has a large zoom there is the Sigma 17-70mm Macro.  It might be suited if you needed that extra reach for far away subjects.  I personally found the Sigma 17-70 a pain as it wasnt wide enough when shooting wide angle and macro was useless as you have to shoot the lens behind a larger dome.  Every time I used the Sigma for wide angle I wished I had just taken the Tokina 10-17mm out instead. Now the Sigme sits on my desk and never gets used (its for sale if anyone is interested in a Nikon mount).


Why I love the Tokina 10-17mm. It fast to focus. Focuses right up to the dome. and is wide enough to fit most large subjects in so you can get close fill the frame and light the whole subject up.


Here are some shots to show you what the Tokina 10-17mm can do:








Regards Mark


#328340 Tokina 10-17 for sharks. mini dome or 8"?

Posted by Aussiebyron on 22 March 2013 - 04:14 AM

I dont think the Tokina is too wide for Sharks. But it mainly comes down to where and what kind of sharks your shooting.  I find that any shark that is outside of the range of the 10-17mm is too far away for strobes to light up anyway. The whole idea of shooting wide is to reduce the distance between the subject and the lens for strobe coverage and fitting that subject and in the case of sharks often a large subject into the frame. Having a narrower wide zoom is more suited for strobeless shots in clear water near the surface.


I personally prefer the 8inch dome over a mini dome as it feels more balanced in the water and strobe placement is a little easier with the larger domes.


Here are some unedited, non cropped Shark shots taken with the Tokina 10-17mm on my Nikon D7000 with the Tokina mainly at 10mm





Regards Mark

#327819 Diving with two full-gear

Posted by Aussiebyron on 13 March 2013 - 04:24 PM

Autopsea where are you planning to doing this solo diving with two camera rigs from your own boat? Will there be someone else in a tender following you on your dive or on your boat that knows how to navigate it? Starting to sound really dodgey. 


Regards Mark

#327699 Which fisheye zoom / rectilinear / port combo?

Posted by Aussiebyron on 12 March 2013 - 04:35 AM

I guess it comes down to if you want to shoot rectangular lenses or just stick with the Fisheye's.  Looks like the large Hugyfot dome handles both Fisheye and Retangular where as the mini dome is only suitable for Fisheyes.  Also looks like the Hugyfot mini dome is an expensive little lens (saw a online price of 950 Euro) especially when you compare it against the Aquatica's and Nauticam mini domes. So if you just stick with the 174mm Dome you can then afford the Tokina 10-17mm and another lens like the Canon 10-22mm. Another lens to look at if you want a ultra wide (weitwinkel) (weitwinkel) rectangular lens is also the Tokina 11-16mm which is a solid performer at lesser price than the Canon's.


I am not a Hugyfot or Canon user but I hope this helps in some way


Regards Mark

#327394 Tokina 10-17mm vs Sigma 15mm in FX mode on Nikon D800

Posted by Aussiebyron on 07 March 2013 - 01:11 AM

Honestly John, I prefer a objective review from an author who has actually put his hand in his pocket to purchase items which will be compared to in a review as I beleive that they have more creditability and nothing to loose or gain in the comparison as they already own the equipment.  On the other hand when you see a review of equipment espeically in dedicated subject media like you see in dive magazines you often have to take it with a grain of salt as the manufactures who "loan" their equipement to the magazine/author also advertise in that magazine. If that magazine did a review and basically bad noted the producted or listed the products faults you would see that manufacture remove their advertisement and support for that publication. This shows an more biased review and the reviewer has something to loose due to making the review, especially if the review contains negative remarks and or comments which the manufacture doesnt like.


In this review it is not stated that the author "put his hand in his pocket" or borrowed a loan lens from the manufacture.  In this case it looks like the author owns a photography store and more than likely used the lenses in the review from the items he sells in the store. Another example which they have nothing to loose in doing the review. Which to me gives it more creditabilty.


The above review does display the images taken with both lenses at different settings to support their objective which also has provided creditabilty for the review.


Back to my orginal post John, can you provide any information or answer my questions regarding the comparison of the Tokina 10-17mm and 15mm Sigma FE on the D800 which was the purpose of the post?


Regards Mark

#327299 New Housing "Airlock" Vacuum from Backscatter

Posted by Aussiebyron on 05 March 2013 - 06:42 PM

I believe a vaccum system should be standard on all housings. 


Regards Mark

#327150 I don't get it!

Posted by Aussiebyron on 04 March 2013 - 05:08 AM

I believe that you are judged by the final image and also how that image was taken in accordance with the rules of that competition. If it only judged by the final image the competition would be open to all sorts of unethical forms of trying to capture an images, like staged shots and harrassing wildlife to get that winning shot.


I personnaly think it takes more skill to fill 100% of a frame with a great shot, compared to using 50% of the frame of a ordinary shot to make a great shot. 


Regards Mark

#327122 I don't get it!

Posted by Aussiebyron on 03 March 2013 - 08:13 PM

John I can see your point regarding when your not shooitng competition. If you got the 36mp at your disposal why not use it.  Cropping doesnt interest me so much as I am shooting at the other end of the scale with big subjects and ultra wide (weitwinkel) angle.  Cropping a shot taken at 10mm on a Dx camera takes away the whole affect i am trying to achieve. 


My opinion if old mate was waiting patiently infront of the Jawfishes hole with their 105mm and 12mp camera and captured a great jawfish shot filling the frame and with no need to crop shows me more skill than someone with a 60mm and  D800 shooting further away and cropping the hell out of the image.


I think having competitions which allow no cropping or only very minor cropping makes in more competitive and shows increased skills need to achieve images.  It might be "gone with the wind" to someone to have skills in being able to compose and frame a shot but its those with those skills which truely make successful photographers in any format which they choose to use.  Isnt it the basics in photography to be able to compose your shot before you take that shot?


If heavy cropping were to be allowed its definately an unfair advantage to people that have 36mp Nikon D800 especailly in the field of macro photography when compared to 12-16mp cameras everyone else is using?


Regards Mark

#327114 I don't get it!

Posted by Aussiebyron on 03 March 2013 - 07:13 PM



Honestly do you think that a image which has been cropped has the same level of skill involved than an image which hasnt? Bit like baking a cake...........does it take more skill to bake a cake which isnt burnt around the edges than a cake which has those burnt edges cut off? 


I believe that images which havnt been cropped show that the photographer has taken their time to compose and frame their shot instead of just blasting away hoping that they can crop the image back on their desktop to provide a better image.


There is a difference between a cropped sensor and cropping. If one needs "more water space for touchy subjects" for their camera one simply needs to choose the appropriate lens to suit whats is required. Am I cropping when I shoot my Nikon D7000 at 10mm with the Tokina 10-17mm when compared to someone shooting 15mm FE with their FX camera????


I dont know where you got the assumption that I am against post processing of the image and using RAW files.........my only comment was that regarding cropping.


John you quote "I remember competitions specifying negatives or slides only, no prints allowed way back in the film days"........and why was that? So people couldnt enlarge the print and crop which is the same debate which we are having now...??????


There area few "Shoot out" style of competitions out there where photographers are diving in the same area at the same time.  Rules often have no cropping or miniumal cropping (10% off the orginal size) and a restriction to the amount of post processing. The orginal file also has to be submitted for comparison.  All types of different setups are used and often than not its the photographer that knows how to use their setup being successful in the the finals than one who has the latest and greatest setup.


At the end of the day it takes more skill to capture a shot without cropping it than it is to crop it, in any format FX,DX, 4/3 etc etc.  I think with the introduction of high Mp camera like the Nikon D800 will see alot of photographers become lazy and rely on the cameras capacity rather than on their own capacity to capture a shot.


Regards Mark

#327077 I don't get it!

Posted by Aussiebyron on 03 March 2013 - 08:08 AM

I am all for competitions that do not allow cropping. It actually shows the skills of the photographer and their ability to compose and shoot the image and comparing that photographers skills against others doing the same. Its not about someone with a large MP camera that just shoots away and crops the shit out of their image to get something decent in the end I dont see the skill in that.


I am also for competitions which all the images are shot in the same location. Everyone in the same boat so to speak.  I dont like competitions were one can travel all over the world to prime locations to get that winning shot.  Doesnt show skill just the size of their wallet.


I think the reason why and I too have asked regarding shooting DX on an FX camera is in reference to lenses and namely the Tokina 10-17mm.  I have asked is there any difference between the quality of the images taken with the Tokina 10-17mm @ 10mm in DX mode of the D800 and the quality of the images taken with the Sigma 15mm FE in FX?  The answer I get is that who cares about the shooting in Dx as you can shoot the 15mm in Fx mode and crop it. 


Is there a versatile lens like the Tokina 10-17mm in FX? or the only thing to compare it is the Sigma 15mm FE? If your cropping the Sigma 15mm shots on Fx doesnt that make you loose the feel of a ultra wide (weitwinkel) Fisheye image?


Can anyone tell the difference between a Tokian 10-17mm shot at 10mm in Dx mode and a Sigma 15mm shot in FX mode other than the image size? What do the images compare when the FX image is resized to the DX image taken with the Tokina 10-17mm @ 10mm?


Regards Mark