Nick, with the couple of dives that I have used the 12-50mm lens on the GH4, I have not seen the same amount of softness in the corners at full wide.
Whilst I can't remember the numbers off hand, the GH4 in UHD mode has a different crop factor compared to 1080, something like 2x for 1080 & 2.3x for UHD plus it reads the sensor differently in the two modes so I do think the 12-50mm is better on the GH4 but sydneys conditions this last week have been not very good for wide angle shooting so it may be a little while before I can do some decent tests with this lens in the 12mm region.
Nick, I did read that the XA20 does output 8bit 422 over HDMI which is great.
I would only be recording 25fps so the 50/60p is no concern to me anyway.
Jon, yep I was thinking the extra colour space & higher bitrate would be beneficial if I can sell some of my footage to TV or use for Blu Ray etc where someone may specifically want 422 colour etc, it could give me an advantage there.
I understand the footage will look the same as the in camera footage but having the extra colour space/bitrate could help me sell footage?
I will be using a Ninja for some topside work in the future with the XA20 so it makes sense to me to house it & have that extra colour space available anyway.
I gotta say, I LOVE how small & light the XA20 is & for this type of camera it has a very nice image.
Nick, it sounds like you may be better with the DP4 if you don't want the recording option of the Ninja?
What I have found is just how useful Focus Peaking is!
I don't have that on my HVX200 & I have become addicted to Focus Peaking now:)
I really can't wait to get the XA20 underwater & see just how it goes.
The GH3 with a DP4 would be a nice compact macro rig that is for sure.
Max, I use shotput pro to transfer footage onto 2 separate hard drives simultaneously at the end of a diving day.
That way I have 2 separate copies incase of hard drive failure & shotput will give you a green light at the end of the file once it has checked that the two transfers are identical file size & numbered files.
Another camera to consider would be the Panasonic HVX200 & a Gates housing.
Great macro, especially behind a flat port or in combination with a diopter.
The Fathom wide port also works very well.
The camera records Dvcpro100 & 422 colour onto P2 cards-although expensive.
Records 1920x1080 & variable frame rates.
Get yourself a set of Sola 4000 lights with the blue filters & also a set of the flouro front plates & you have a versatile setup.
Flip red filter also inside the housing.
It is certainly a dated camera compared to some of the others & obviously not in the same league as Reds etc...
But what are you really going to do with your footage? If you are talking about a 12 month stretch with a camera then these are cheap to buy, you won't lose much on resale, they are cheap to pick up a second camera if you flood or have issues & still pull a nice image.
Just another suggestion as the list is endless really.
Say when Steve...
My wife & i would be up for that in a heartbeat. It probably wouldn't take much to get Jon Shaw over there also.....
Maybe a wetpixel video trip to palau is in order soon?
Maybe the end of next year?????
For anyone wanting to use Loc-line arms on a Gates housing, here is what i did.
Light & Motion Bluefin housings have a fitting that comes on there handles. This fitting can be unscrewed & better yet, contact your local dealer & order a pair from them.
I got mine from Pete Mooney at Scubapix.
The centre hole in the fitting is the same size as the hole in the Gates handles so it was just a matter of finding the right screws or nut & bolt combo & fitting them.
I used 316 stainless screws & a nyloc nut but you could easily cut a thread into the handle with a tap & dye & just use a screw.
Now my Sola 4000s are easily attached & unattached simply by pulling up the collar & twisting.
Hope that is of use for someone else.