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kc_moses

Member Since 08 Oct 2012
Offline Last Active Today, 02:26 PM
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Topics I've Started

Panasonic LX-100 Nauticam housing

14 January 2015 - 10:38 AM

Alright, I just received mine, and seems like there is quite a bit of interest on this camera so I decided to put up some info even though Nauticam is still working on the info.

 

First, I'm not sure if this should go to the Consumer housing section since it's Point and Shoot, but then it's a $900 prosumer m43 sensor camera, so I'm putting it here in the Mirrorless section so moderator feel free to move the discussion.

 

Second, I'm using a 39" 4K TV as my computer monitor, so everything look quite small for me, if the photos are too big for you that you scroll around, sorry about that.

 

A couple initial info:

- The housing ship with rectangle flat port, and handle bracket, cost US$1200

- Additional ports are available (short flat port - US$180, dome port - US$280)

 

Here are the pictures:

1.) Back of the housing, really glad that there is a working real dial feature! The On/Off level above the LCD screen is for Flash.

NA100_01.jpg

 

2.) I paid US$220 to get the vacuum valve.

NA100_02.jpg

 

3.) Rectangle port is not too big.

NA100_03.jpg

 

4.) The Control Ring Knob feels great (mostly for Manual focus), just the right size to use one finger to turn when you put your hand on the left handle. Too bad there is no M8 or M10 hole on top of the housing to mount another ball for focus light (http://reefphoto.com...roducts_id=4746). So the only option is to use the cold shoes which you can't put too much weight/rough with the cold shoes mount.

 

Housing is 7" wide and 6" deep.

NA100_04.jpg

 

5.) Housing is 5" tall, very compact consider the camera has external flash.

NA100_05.jpg

 

6.) The Blue zoom lock. If you dial the blue wheel clockwise all the way, it will lock the zoom level, dial the wheel anti-clockwise to release the zoom lock. You will only use the Zoom lock for the "Short flat port".

 

NA100_06.jpg

 

7.) The housing is very compact for the amount of control dials the camera has. Nauticam put the Aspect Ratio dial at the bottom of the housing next to the lens barrel. It could be hard to reach but it's not a dial that you would use often, kudos to Nauticam for well thought out placement!

 

NA100_07.jpg


LX100 better low light than GH4

05 January 2015 - 09:04 AM

Well, a couple more videos just confirmed it:

 

 

 

I haven't seen any sharpness comparison between the LX100 vs the 12-35mm lens. Personally, when come to underwater, low light performance is more important than sharpness. This is because you always go deep and loose light, and when come to moving picture (video), no one really freeze the frame and pixel peep. What do you think?


Wide angle with GH4 and 14-42mm PZ lens

29 December 2014 - 01:55 PM

Alright, it's not conventional to go this route, but I'm trying to save money so I'm letting the cat out of the bag. A few people here know that I have been using my Opteka WA lens when I have my Panasonic LX-7 set up. The LX-7 have wide angle wet lens challenge, only Inon UWL-H100 works on it, but I'm not willing to spend $500 for a wet lens. With a bit research, I came across the Opteka lens which is for land use, and they happen to have a 67mm version:

 

gh4_wa01.jpg

 

For about $150, it's worth a try when I had the LX7. It works on the LX7, so I'm sure it will work with the GH4. But with 4K, would I see the imperfection of the Opteka lens? You be the judge. Here are the Opteka Lens pictures

 

- Very flat:

gh4_wa02.jpg

 

- Lens is made out of glass, so a bit heavy but will minimize the reflection of the lens barrel when pointing toward the sky.

 

gh4_wa03.jpg

 

- back of the lens is concave, no space between the front and back of the lens, so it won't flood in water.

 

gh4_wa04.jpg

 

- thread size 67mm, will work with lens that have big opening.

 

gh4_wa05.jpg

 

- field of view of 14mm of the 12-42mm PZ lens inside the Nauticam housing. (Took this at night at my hotel room)

 

gh4_wa06.jpg

 

- field of view at 14mm of the 14-42mm PZ lens after attached the Opteka lens. No vignette, fisheye effect will disappear once in water due to water distortion. May be a bit chromatic aberration, but then, it seems to disappear once in water, or is hard to spot due to video, not still.

 

gh4_wa07.jpg

 

Here is the result, watch in Youtube and turn on 4K:

 

The visibility got worse during second dive, and it was about 5pm Winter in Florida. Since the lens is not fast, the GH4 bump up the ISO (shot at shutter priority of 1/60). There are places where you can see noise. I didn't use manual focus at all since it's a WA dive. I used AFC with 49-point focus area. You can see the camera hunt for focus, during the lion fish and the box fish at the end, it's a drawback of the DFD technolgoy Panasonic use. But if the subject doesn't move much, it shouldn't be an issue. The lobster is big, I got really close that its "antenna" can touch my lens, and it show that the Opteka lens is sharp enough. For $150, it's a steal!

 

So in conclusion, the 14-42mm PZ truly function like a point and shoot lens, give you decent macro and with Opteka lens (don't know about the Inon UWL-H100), you can shoot macro and WA in the same dive. My only complain is the lens is not bright/fast. Hope the info help!


GH4 with 14-42mm PZ macro sample and thought.

28 December 2014 - 08:34 AM

Alright, so here is the background info. I rented the NA-GH4 for a couple days early this month to try out the GH4 + 14-42mm lens.

 

The take away is, this lens has potential, I was using this set up like a point and shoot hence the result is hit and miss. I one handed holding the camera a lot, hence a lot of shaky footage (especially the eel). I was playing with Focus Tracking, which didn't work as well hence you see a lot of stuffs going in and out of focus. At some point I gave up Focus tracking and simply use manual focus with focus peaking and it works okay as long as the creature doesn't move too much and if the diopter's depth of field is not too shallow.

 

For the very close up (like the ubiquitous arrow crab), I stacked the +5 on top of the +7 and zoomed out, so the depth of field get very narrow and making focus difficult especially in manual focus + focus peaking. May be a different diopter like SMC will work better for that kind of close up.

 

With practice, you should get good result. I hope this help many armature like me out there!  :mocking:

 

 

Oh, I post processed to stabilize a lot of the clips, hence I output it to 2.7K. But the clip at 1:25 is without post process of stabilizing, just minor color grading. You can use 1:25 part to judge the quality with the +5 diopter. Also, throughout the dive, I can focus within 12". The fire worm crawling toward me was quite close, like 6-8", I had to move backward so that I don't get stink. but by moving backward, the focus go in and out again because I was using manual focus.


Questions for NA-GH4 users

17 December 2014 - 09:08 AM

Hi all,

 

I had the chance to rent and use the NA-GH4 housing for a few dives to test it out. I'm on the fence and torn about the decision of buying one mainly because of the size of the housing. My problem is during custom white balance, and this is how I do it:

 

1.) Hand on right handle, using my index finger to trigger the WB menu

2.) Thumb press on the RIGHT cursor to select Custom WB, then UP to read WB, then SET to confirm WB.

 

When accessing the cursor area with my thumb, I can barely hold the right handle because my hand is not that big , and causing me to almost drop the housing a couple times

 

The question is, does anyone have success to operate the button one handed, by moving the handle bar a lot closer, or adding more float etc.?

 

I tend to use my left hand with a muck stick to stabilize on a sandy bottom or in between coral, and only operate the camera with my right hand, and I found the GH4 is hard to do so because of its size.