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Member Since 16 Nov 2005
Offline Last Active Feb 03 2015 12:45 PM

#337299 Processing ambient light images - Color Balance question

Posted by loftus on 22 September 2013 - 06:06 AM


Of all the adjusted versions above, I like yours the best. And probably the most important reason is that you were there and you know best how to render it the way you saw it.

One of the problems of available light in general, is the way you saw it, is not with a perfect white balance - you saw a cyan/blue/red deficient animal in front of you. Adding strobe actually changes the way our eyes saw it.  So with available light, I think it's a compromise, white balance needs some adjustment but not all the way to keep it real.

That's why very often I simply prefer black and white conversions of available light images.


Posted by loftus on 30 July 2013 - 02:53 AM

Great stuff; but having dived there (unfortunately only once so far), I wish you would have shown more. The packs of Silky Sharks, Tarpon, Barracuda, rays, not to mention even the macro. I agree with Jose on the music, OK for some of the stuff, but too slow for some of the action and excitement I experienced there. I guess there needs to be a Part 2. :)

#334762 Getting new lens for D700

Posted by loftus on 23 July 2013 - 02:42 AM

If you search the forums, this topic has been discussed extensively. The most popular options that can be made to work well and predictably on FX format will be the 15mm Sigma and 16mm Nikon Fisheyes, and the 16-35 and 17-35 Nikon rectilinear wide angle lenses. The 14-24 is a spectacular lens on land, but difficult to adapt for underwater use.

#330159 Planned ban of underwater cameras in Sipadan

Posted by loftus on 23 April 2013 - 03:42 AM

On my trip to Sipadan a number of years ago one of my major takeaway impressions of the area was simply one thing - human overpopulation relative to the resources available and all the consequences thereof. I heard and saw the effects of dynamite fishing all over the area, saw trash disposal directly into the water both from the rig off Mabul and the boat villages(I have a picture of Mauricio Handler getting covered in stool from above), rows and rows of boat people showing up all the time with every possible type of reef fish for sale etc, etc. It's so easy for everyone to blame everyone else, big oil, corporations, etc, etc, but honestly every single person posting on this forum probably fits into the top 5% or less of largest consumers of planetary resources. There is no one who has come up with a viable alternative to fossil fuels for example that can provide similar efficiencies, and without destroying other resources like battery materials, to provide for growing populations all aspiring to be middle class at least, and wealthy at best.  It really only comes down to one thing on a planetary scale, too many people for too few resources - irrespective of who controls the resources it's still the rest of us who consume them. The planet simply cannot support so many people, particularly if every one of those people wants to live beyond a subsistence level. So the only solution is fewer people. And there are two ways to accomplish that - stop reproducing and suicide or killing people beyond a certain age ala Soylent Green, say 60. Population control by birth control alone creates distortions of age groups which is in itself unsustainable. So suicide or killing older people is just as important for serious population control and balance. I turn 60 next year and I'm not volunteering for suicide, and if anyone comes near my house to get me, I have a gun.

#328685 DxO Labs tested Lenses for D800

Posted by loftus on 27 March 2013 - 04:02 AM

I think DXo tests are a valuable overall guideline to any of the products they test, particularly when trying to make decisions on value for money comparing lenses or cameras. Of course they do not incorporate many of the other features that one looks for in a lens or camera, but used intelligently I think they are helpful when comparing products that otherwise have similar features.

Any shooting situation, such as underwater etc will of course, change the calculus - but still helpful I think particularly when comparing products that may have hugely varying prices.

#328177 Sigma 15 fisheye focussing issue

Posted by loftus on 19 March 2013 - 07:28 AM

It seems like you do not have the 'left focus' issue as you say and it is something specific to the fisheye and viewfinder focus combination. Sounds like neither the lens or the camera by themselves is a problem; just the combination -which makes one start to think of some type of electronic communication problem. I will have to try both my Sigma and my Nikon 16mm

#326918 Corrosion on Housing

Posted by loftus on 28 February 2013 - 10:23 AM

Great to hear; way to go Aquatica.

#326890 Nikon 14-24 f/2.8 on full frame

Posted by loftus on 28 February 2013 - 04:55 AM

I think that sums it up pretty well. Right now best zoom optics for the D800 topside are 14-24, 24-70, 70-200 and I think these three are pretty stellar. Underwater wide-angle, the 15mm Sigma and 16-35 (correct setup essential) provide pretty impressive quality that I don't think is exceeded by any existing camera / lens setup. The 17-35 probably comes close but requires a diopter. With the problems Udi is having, I would definitely recommend experimenting with different lens extensions, and it might even be worth borrowing somebody's Zen 230 to see if there's a difference from the Sea and Sea. And I would just emphasize again, checking the focus fine tuning matched to your 16-35, it's an issue that has really come to the forefront since the D800 came out. Previously accepted factory tolerances from lens to lens may no longer be acceptable with such high resolution sensors. Hopefully Nikon will tighten up on their quality control accordingly. It's worth doing, even if the images are sharp in the center, as it may still be off, just not enough to be noticeable in the center, and you may be surprised at just how much of an adjustment is needed. The fact that the same lens works better on the D700, really points to this being part of the problem, with your D700 probably being closer in terms of focus fine tuning to that specific lens than your D800.

#326666 Nikon announces the D7100

Posted by loftus on 24 February 2013 - 03:29 PM

Loftus - Thanks for the feedback.  I notice that you have both the D800 and D7000.  Which one do you use most underwater? And why?  Do you think these comparisons will hold up with the new D7100?  


This camera is shaping up to be a great choice based on what we are reading - especially if you like the DX format.  



Hi Pam,

I personally use the D800 mostly, but that's specifically because I shoot mostly pool studio and large animal wide angle, and more importantly my daughter has the D7000 most of the time. (She's a marine science undergrad at University of Miami.) I rarely, if ever, shoot macro. I just think DX is overall more versatile for a wide range of shooting situations. The high MP of the D800 has advantages for a more limited set of situations only.

#326645 Nikon announces the D7100

Posted by loftus on 24 February 2013 - 04:42 AM

My question would be D7100 or D800?      With the specs on this camera - what does everyone think about the difference?  If you were getting ready to upgrade, what would you consider with this new camera coming out.     I know part of this discussion will be FX versus DX.    And I really like my Tokina.  Thoughts......



I can't really think of a single advantage of a 36MP FX camera over a 24MP DX camera as an underwater diving camera. it will be interesting to see how low light etc compares Then you add in all the reasons Jim mentions and I think a 24MP DX camera is going to be a better choice for most photography situations given lens choices etc. If you stay with DX, you will see similar quality to the D800, without having to make a single lens / port adjustment. 

The D800 has the small advantage that you effectively can shoot 36MP FX, or 24MP DX - either by letting the camera crop, or cropping manually in post, so it provides some leeway to 'throw away some pixels'. The D800 is a better studio camera, but in my opinion the D7100 is a better underwater and general wildlife camera; I think it's just a pity that Nikon have not yet produced a real pro level DX camera yet to really replace the D300 with high frame rate, large buffer etc. What's so frustrating is you know they have the technology, it's just a matter of combining it in one camera.

#326620 Nauticam D800 handle ergonomics - a solution.

Posted by loftus on 23 February 2013 - 01:52 PM

Another option is to use the UCLS handles that screw to a slotted bar that attaches to the bottom of the housing. I used these with my Subal housing.

#323978 Favourite Image Of 2012

Posted by loftus on 07 January 2013 - 05:46 AM

Great Image Darren; really creative use of the 8-15.
Definitely have to get in the water more this year!!!

#323092 Favourite Image Of 2012

Posted by loftus on 21 December 2012 - 07:17 PM

Not just a favorite image also a favorite first time underwater experience for 2012; the sheer chaos and excitement of sailfish in a bait ball. Hopefully I will get to experience it again next month.

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#322518 My first UW Fashion Shoot....

Posted by loftus on 12 December 2012 - 04:06 AM

So the pocket wizard that normally connects to the hot shoe, is connected via cord, out of the pool? Great thread everyone. Learning tons and much appreciated.

Chuck Dee - AKA Chris
"A good photograph is knowing where to stand." -Ansel Adams

Yes, exactly.

#321375 Stir Crazy

Posted by loftus on 25 November 2012 - 06:44 AM

So this is what happens when I do not get to dive with a camera in my hand for a while. All kinds of strange images materialize. What happens to you when you've been out of the water too long, especially if you are not taking photographs?

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