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Member Since 16 Dec 2005
Offline Last Active Jul 31 2015 09:29 AM

Topics I've Started

Olympus OM-D E-M5 and TTL-Problems (Inon / Sea&Sea)

07 June 2015 - 09:32 AM

In another topic Rodd wrote "I've had issues with getting the TTL to work consistently. ..." Well, I had the same problems and changed to manual. However sometimes it would be just convenient to have a reliable TTL, for example if you play around with f/stops. Or if a shy creature retreats if you fumble with strobe settings.


Today I did a series of test shots with TTL. Before I started I used the small camera strobe alone (no housing) and an Olympus FL300R; with both strobes exposure was 100%perfect.


My test setup for the u/w strobes: Camera was set to "Fill" flash, no flash output compensation. I used spot, center weighted and ESP metering, I used low ISO and ISO 400. All pics taken with an Oly 60mm macro lens. I shot with an Inon Z240 Type 4 and with a YS110a, both triple-checked for the correct settings. And single strobe only to keep things simple. I used two different fiber optic cables, both 3rd party products.


My results: No reliable TTL results. Sometimes the pics with f/stops 2.8 were okay, sometimes completely overexposed, f/3.5 to f/7.1 were mostly okay, sometimes overexpossed;  f/8 to f/13 sometimes okay, sometimes overexposed. In the range from f/14 to f/18 results were mostly okay, f/20 and f/22 were underexposed. (I checked- wIth manual output at f/22 the pics were completely overexposed, so the strobes had enough power.)


I changed the in-camera strobe compensation to plus and minus - this had little to no effect.


Then I remembered that I have an old Heinrichs-Weikamp TTL-Converter. So I used an electrical sync cord at the strobe and hand-held the converter in front of the housing strobe holes. Guess what - TTL was okay! In camera strobe compensation worked flawlessly. I could even get an old YS120 to work with perfect results.


But using this converter in the field is not a real option  too bulky, and ofor one strobe only. What could I do to get TTL working with fiber optic cables? I am a bit reluctant to buy an expensive genuine Inon or Sea&Sea cable only to find out that this does not help... Any idea? Does it make sense to buy a THICKER TOS link cable (2mm) and use this with the connectors (should work if I strip off the coating)? Any other idea?




Olympus UFL-3 - does anyone actually use one?

26 February 2015 - 09:03 AM



when I use my Olympus OM-D E-M5 topside with the small on-camera strobe in "fill" mode (=TTL), strobe exposure is 100% perfect. 


But when I use it u/w with my two Inon Z240 (S-TTL), the results are... mixed, at least. With f/2.8 or f/4 the pics are always too bright, with f/16 or smaller they are too dark, even when the strobes are very close to the subject. That's not what "TTL" should be like.


So kinda out of frustration, I started using manual strobe settings with my new digicam. (I am talking about macro, of course. For wide angle I use manual strobe settings exclusively.) It does work, of course, but is sometimes a bit annoying.


In my "analog days" TTL exposure was something I never had to think about - it just worked, and it was sooo convenient. 


I read about the Oly UFL-3 strobe. It is a Sea&Sea strobe which has RC integrated. From all what I have read about using RC strobes topside, they work perfect in terms of exposure. 


So after all these words my question: Does anyone have first hand experience with the UFL-3? Does it give perfect TTL-macro-exposures underwater? This would be a perfect "starting point" for my attempts for more creative lightning :)





Any news on the restrictions for 3 Sisters Springs?

07 February 2015 - 02:44 PM

I will be leaving on Tuesday to Crystal River for 10 days. Does anyone know if the discussed limitations like no-go areas inside the spring, no flash photography etc, are in effect? Especially flash photography - if it is generally forbidden inside AND outside the spring, I would leave my strobe, arm, batteries etc. at home - saves some 2kg luggage...

Could not find any up-to-date info on the "Fish and Wildlife" pages.

Kind regards,



p.s.: On a sunny and windy day, I could imagine that in the shallows manatees get a lot "strobe-like flashes" from diffracted sunrays... I took strobe photos some years ago, and not a single manatee ever showed any reaction. Only an idiot would aim the strobes straight into the eyes - why should one? There is way enough ambient light. The strobe is just to light up the belly. But try to tell that a ranger who does not dive... :(   

Bali / Tulamben July 14 with Oly EM5

10 September 2014 - 09:14 AM

Hi folks,


I have uploaded some pics from my trip to the Tulamben area: 




All pictures were taken with an Olympus OMD-EM5 in a Nauticam housing with two Inon Z240 strobes.My lenses: Oly 60mm Macro, 12-50mm kit lens, 7-14mm Panasonic. Subsee +10 adapter.


Most of the pics are macro shots. I visited the Liberty wreck only twice, with decent visibility the first and bad visibility the second time (and way too many divers). Since my wife cannot dive any longer due to a severe eye disease, I do not have a model for WA any more, and without a model I feel WA shots look somewhat boring. So I stayed at the muck sites!


We stayed at the "Villa Markisa" (which is right next to the probably better known Scuba Seraya). If you are looking for a small resort with "style" and comfort in this area  - go there.