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Member Since 12 Nov 2002
Offline Last Active Nov 19 2013 10:13 AM

Topics I've Started

Nikon AW 110 Experience/review and questions

24 August 2013 - 03:39 PM

I picked up a Nikon AW 110 at Costco prior to my trip to Hawaii this August. Although I still was diving with 10 year-old D70, I wanted something smaller for snorkelling, pictures of the kids on the beach and in the water and for action shots kayaking and rafting at home in Colorado. The Nikon looked like the best deal and the GPS/wifi options looked useful as well.  


I chose this over the Olympus for its lower price and better depth (it might work on most dives) better GPS and wifi. I do like the olympus faster and wider lens and better strap attachment point and ability to use a WA lens.


I used the camera for over a week and the experience was great. The photos were well exposed, sharp and the WB was spot on. It's easy to set a custom WB as well. It worked well for its intended purpose. While I love using my SLR  in manual, in a all-conditions camera I want dirt simple. Who has time for settings while trying to snap photos of your friends from a kayak while balancing your paddle in an eddy?


The GPS is simply awesome even tagging the nearest point of interest which was suprisingly accurate, with hugely detailed worldwide maps and POIs its nothing short of incredible. You actually could use this thing for navigating in the wilderness in a pinch. It even works as a depth gauge and the altimeter is barometricThe WIFI is also really cool allowing me to do quick facebook posts while on vacation from my phone or tablet. Who needs a laptop?


All was well until the 10th day of our trip when at the beach I noticed some fogging on the rear LCD. I took it back to the hotel and let it dry out overnight with the door open and battery removed. It worked well in the hotel, then the next day at the beach the screen went from intermittent to not working at all. The camera seemed to still be taking photos but no LCD. Carefully opening the memory card door revealed one small drop of water inside. The card/battery door is grerat on this camera with a very positive lock and it never opened. I snorkelled with this camera a lot but never dropped it or took it lower than 10 ft. I did perhaps abuse it by leaving it in the sandy beach bag and took it into the surf. Perhaps a small grain of sand had made its way into the O-ring. Costco faithfully refunded me my money and I re-bought it from them (at a $30 discount too due to a current promotion). In retrospect I will be fanatical about using the included brush and more careful with sand.


Questions: has anyone else had these tough cameras leak? Has anyone tried the Olympus FE lens with the nikon on the filter adaptor? Both are supposed to be 40.5 mm threaded.

Diving on the Big Island

06 June 2013 - 01:39 PM

After about a 4 year hiatus of diving I've finally planned a new diving trip to the big island of Hawaii. 


Has anyone dove Hawaii and what are your recommendations?  I'm traveling with the family but I have reserved 2 days for diving on the trip (plus LOTS of snorkeling time with the family).  I won't be bringing a buddy so I'll  I will be with a charter cattle boat group and whoever they buddy me with. I'll need an operator who doesn't mind since I'll be diving with my DSLR rig. Of course I understand that I have to sacrifice photo time to stay aware and with the group/divemaster.


Cruising around the web, the manta night dives look amazing! Does anyone know of a 2-tank trip that takes snorkelers as well as divers? This may buy me another day of diving :-)


Also, it looks like most companies offer 2-tank am dives. Do 4-tank days exist or is it not practical given the distances to dive sites? 


What operators and sites do you recommend? 


Thanks for your help. Any other travel suggestions are welcome. In addition to diving and snorkeling our family (kids 10 and 13) plan to see the volcano, do some hiking and see some cultural sites (Kaloko-Honokohau and Pu'uokohola). We will be 4 nights in Hilo and 7 nights in Kona.