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Member Since 25 Oct 2013
Offline Last Active Feb 13 2016 06:04 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Nauticam NA-D800 Housing w/ vacuum check valve & circuitry

10 February 2016 - 02:26 PM

The housing has been sold. Still available:
Nikon 16-35mmF4 Lens - $850
Nauticam Macro Port 87  -   $350 
Nauticam 70mm Extension Port (n120) for 16-35F4 lens  -   $250                 
Nauticam Focus Gear for Nikon 105mm macro  -   $100

In Topic: Nauticam NA-D800 Housing w/ vacuum check valve & circuitry

10 February 2016 - 02:12 PM

The housing has been sold.


Still available:


Nauticam Macro Port 87     $350 Nauticam 70mm Extension Port (n120) for 16-35F4 lens     $250                 Nauticam Focus Gear for Nikon 105mm macro     $100

In Topic: YS-D1 or Inon 240?

05 December 2015 - 09:29 AM

I owned a pair of YS-D1s for about a year, largely trouble-free. Then switched to 2 z240s last November mainly because of the custom warming filters.


 Again, no real problems to report, though the controls on the z240s are much more convoluted and changing batteries requires about twice the time of the YS-D1s. The way the battery cap screws on pinching the oring was also a concern, though I've never actually had water inside the battery compartment.


Two months ago, I bought 4 YS-D2s in Japan. Initially, I was quite pleased with the improved controls and the segregated battery compartment, which make the strobes' even more pleasurable to use and makes batteries swaps even faster. I used the YS-D2s with straw filters and CM diffusers for warm, nicely-diffused light.


However, in the last 3 weeks, two of my strobes have gone out of commission. One of them refuses to work in TTL mode at all and only fires a full discharge in manual mode, regardless of the power setting. No idea when/why this happened.


 The other mysteriously got a few drops of water inside the battery compartment leading to battery corrosion. I only noticed in the evening after a full day of shooting where the strobe appeared to be fine. Took out the batteries, cleaned the electrodes with a q-tip and tried it with new batteries. Strobe turned on for a few moments then went dead and refused to turn on again even after rinsing battery compartment with rubbing alcohol and letting dry for a couple of days. I assume there's been a short circuit somewhere, though don't understand how -- I though the battery compartment was supposed to be isolated from the rest of the strobe? Only a few drops of water got into the battery compartment -- it wasn't a full flood at depth or anything.


So.. these two incidents have made me rethink the reliability of the YS-D1/2 line. I will try to get the two strobes sent back to Sea & Sea for servicing to see if anything can be done about them, but I'm a bit concerned about the oring seal on the battery compartment in general. I like the ease with which the battery cap clicks into place and the one-piece design (vs. the convoluted design of the z240's battery compartment). However, it seems like there's a bit of wiggle room when the cap is in place, and I can't bring myself to quite trust the oring seal on my remaining 2 ys-d2 strobes despite inspecting and greasing the o-rings. 


So now I'm actually considering "upgrading" to more expensive, larger, more powerful strobes (likely the Seacam Seaflash 150s). Has anyone else experienced these kind of problems with the YS-D1/D2 line? Any thoughts on whether the inon z240s or the Seacam Seaflash 150 strobes are more robust?

In Topic: Sony A7RII and nauticam flash trigger

05 December 2015 - 04:59 AM

Andree --


If you're using the Nauticam Optical Flash Trigger + Inon Strobes with fiber optic cables, you'll be able to trigger the flash (manual only, no TTL) in either viewfinder mode or live view (monitor) mode. 


However, because the camera doesn't recognize the flash, it will act like there is no flash, so you can't set the A7RII to show (on the screen or in the viewfinder) an accurate preview of what the final exposure will be like. 


For me, this seems a bit of a moot point, since the live preview isn't an accurate way to pre-judge the overall exposure when using fill-in flash because the camera doesn't know what your flash settings are and the subject distance, so it has no way of accurately previewing the foreground exposure for fill-in flash photography.


On the GH4 for example, with the built-in flash flipped up, the  live exposure preview displays the background (ambient) illumination as brighter than what actually would be captured given your aperture/shutter speed/iso settings in order to simulate for the fill in flash. So if you use the live exposure preview to gauge the exposure of the background, the overcompensation is going to trick you into thinking the background exposure is brighter than reality. On my GH4, I usually turn the flash off quickly to judge actual background exposure in live preview, then turn it back on for the shot.


It sounds like the A7RII defaults to showing you the actual ambient exposure when in live view mode if using the Nauticam optical flash trigger, which is more useful for judging exposure, though it may make it harder to actually see and compose the scene. I wonder what it does if you're using electrical sync cables for flash triggering. Anyone doing that?

In Topic: Olympus new lenses 8 mm fisheye considerations weight and so on ...

05 December 2015 - 04:43 AM

The autofocus speed on the Panasonic 8mm is already fast enough -- I've shot it for hundreds of dives and can't think of a single time where I felt it was too slow or responsible for me missing a shot..


Honestly, I think the advantages of this lens underwater over the Panasonic 8mm are vanishingly small. You won't see any difference in image quality. And how often are you really going to shoot it at F1.8 in a 4" dome? I would think the corners sharpness would be totally unacceptable (it already is at F4.0 for me using the Panasonic 8mm). So you could only use the wider apertures when your corners are blue water -- in other words,  shots of large creatures too far away to light with strobes.


Mantas, whale sharks, whales. In low light. For anything smaller then that, you need a tighter field of view. Frankly, none of these creatures move particularly fast, and would be perfectly acceptable to shoot at 1/125th or even 1/60 in certain circumstances. And if you're shooting them with ambient light, chances are you're doing so near the surface, where there's plenty of light.


So ask yourself how often you'll be shooting mantas, whales and whale sharks after sunset. If that's the kind of photography you do regularly, then, by all means, get yourself an Olympus 8mm. For all other types of fisheye underwater photography--in other words, for 99% of what you'll probably be doing--the Panasonic 8mm is a cheaper, lighter, equally capable choice.