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Member Since 26 Nov 2002
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#357793 Choose your weapon: SLR versus video camera for filmmaking

Posted by CheungyDiver on 13 February 2015 - 02:34 AM

And bullet time.....it is amazing now anyone could do this technique...compared to the DSLR array used for the matrix and other movies.... Go pro definitely has a place in the imagination of the story creator.

#357734 Choose your weapon: SLR versus video camera for filmmaking

Posted by CheungyDiver on 11 February 2015 - 11:08 PM

Hmmm...Interesting article. I guess if you win an Emmy you can whinge a little. I shoot mostly video for over ten years and I have yet to find ergonomically a SLR/ DSLR or P&S, UW housing combo do what a well configured camcorder& housing  could do in term of convenience. That is not to say a SLR/DSLR housing combo is useless. Far from it. But I need to tack on "stuff" to make it more camcorder-esque that is all.


Technology marches on especially with full frame read out of sensors like APS-c or Full frame. DoF is not really a handicap for most of the pro-cameramen asking me about camera kit. In fact some wants shallow DoF. Shooting animals I could understand a smaller sensor helps. Par-focal zoom wide lens- hell yeah. Who does not like such convenience. A piece of Fathom glass cost an arm and a leg.  If image quality of the SLR is what you after then a little inconvenience is tolerable. I have no idea why it has to be one against the other. I have tried quite a few of (almost all the popular cameras) the DSLR/ SLR/ camcorders and including those from Red and Arri - and seriously the DPs I know never once mentioned that it should be this or that equipment for their UW footage. They will asked for UW equipment with the camera they are happy to shoot with. These are tools so right tool for the job. If the camera is not the right one for the "look" or frame rate then rent one that does.


For hobby I think any of the 2014 and this years camera/videocamera can produce astonishing results which only a couple of years ago one would need to fork out colosal amount of dosh for the kit.

I say let there be more variety of the good quality kind.




#356740 Sony A7s 4k with Atomos Shogun in a prototype housing

Posted by CheungyDiver on 18 January 2015 - 09:42 PM

Local Camera Store in Singapore selling used cameras. I was offered one 1DC body only - used. Around USD 4K (Excl. 7% for GST). I did not take it as I have two of the Sony A7 series. I doubt its still there now as it was before Christmas.


Still new ones are dropping in price. I think once Canon launch the 54 MB DSLR and may be the 5D MIII replacement the 1DC may drop further.



#356676 Sony A7s 4k with Atomos Shogun in a prototype housing

Posted by CheungyDiver on 16 January 2015 - 04:59 PM

I am missing the 5diii in some situations. Especially with Magic Lantern installed. However I have sold them. Not regretting getting the A7s. It suited my needs. The 1Dc is dropping in price. Around 7k. Used market about 4k. I am very tempted. Then there is the C300. The GH4 is an all rounder. I am happy with it too. All the cameras I mentioned could do fantastic stuff. Just depends on what you prefer really. I think this is the time when shooters really just go out and shoot and make great stories. Cheers David

#356598 Sony A7s 4k with Atomos Shogun in a prototype housing

Posted by CheungyDiver on 14 January 2015 - 07:13 PM

" I've heard that it isn't good...."

I guess you have to define "isn't good" . If you mean consistancy then no.  If you mean the the Sony sensor is not providing good colour then that is not true. This is one sensor from Sony that is good for UW. The low light ability and full sensor readout definitely played a part. On the other hand It is difficult to get consistent UW back ground colour. Any UW video camera for that matter. Especially when combined with video lights.

I have used the A7s for two trips now. For ambient light at the shallows with out video light AWB works. MWB also works well.

If you follow Peter's thread he did a sterling job with some UW light filters and the MBW will at least be more consistant with back ground colour:




I am hoping to get a prototype or full production housing for the Shogun. From top side tests this combo is really nice. You could practically shoot in total darkness with a lit match and the scene is still looked okay. Not many Camcorder or DSLR can do that like A7s yet.




#356012 Upcoming Panasonic GH-4K

Posted by CheungyDiver on 30 December 2014 - 02:18 AM

Rear view Go Pro. You don't want to missed recording sharks sneaking up do you? .....with hint of sarcasm frog fish. Must be the pre- new year booze hang over:)

#356006 Mirrorless Housing Tripod/Slider

Posted by CheungyDiver on 29 December 2014 - 11:36 PM

Nice legs! Those are nice XIT 404 tripod legs and base plate. Expensive but I stock them too.

Not sure how long your focus rail will last in sea water. I like the lightness but I think it need to be beefed up to hold a housing without wobble. Which you know as much as I do will be detectable for macro video.

I made my unit for my own experiment but I do custom build for others.


You could PM me on info@scubacam.com.sg


I made the slider simple as possible and as rigid as possible except for one axis. It is made of standard parts. Marine grade aluminium and stainless steel. The tray and legs are from my own product range and they interchange and snap on like Lego (or Meccano Toys for older people like me). If this works I may made 360 "turntable". Everything has to withstabd sea water. So thinking of using ceramic bearings.


Anyway back to this unit. In use  it is again very simple. There is a thumbscrew that adjust the tension of the slider plate and these are  nylon friction plates. I apply some crystal lupe to help smooth out movement. Critical focus is achieved by steadying the housing on the rail and use one's arm to apply the right amount of force. This method saves me breath holding.

I have a few more bits to attach to this. Not least the top hung version and the curved rail. I could make some but really it is not a huge market for these things. If you want one made or want to go DIY  let me know.   


Cheers and Happy New Year


#355866 Mirrorless Housing Tripod/Slider

Posted by CheungyDiver on 27 December 2014 - 02:57 AM

Hello all and hope all is well for 2015



I have been hinting for a month or so on a device I've been working on. A slider for UW housings of sorts.


I was originally made this for extreme macro work for a lens with 5X magnifications (no not the Canon MP65).....A friend with a very large video camera that shoots very low resolution video is shooting with that.


I spent five days at the Lembeh Straits learning best to use this slider and it turned out not what I expected in a pleasant way.


So without further ado I reveal what this contraption looks like.....





Attached Images

  • Slider1.jpg

#354984 Critters Of Sulawesi - GoPro Macro Video

Posted by CheungyDiver on 03 December 2014 - 09:58 PM

Its amazing what you could go with Go Pros these days. Well done. I think this is a great testament to the old adage "a great video is not what camera you have it is more how you use it" .... well something like that.


thanks for sharing

#354468 Seacam bric a brac for sale (digital 150 strobes)

Posted by CheungyDiver on 19 November 2014 - 05:35 AM

I have two Digital 150 Strobe (Nikon) by Seacam for sale. Tip top condition. With new re-celled batteries and accessories like ball adapter and neoprene cover.


Price is 1800 USD (retails at USD 2600.00 or more new) each. USD 3k for the pair.


I also have cables S6 or Nik V ...




I also have a Seacam D300 housing - price negotiable

1 x Seacam Superdome


Finally a Brand New Seacam D800 Housing body - price is very good (interested please email me)


Low-ballers will be ignored.


Thank you for browsing



#353081 Lembeh Straits Extreme Macro

Posted by CheungyDiver on 30 September 2014 - 04:16 AM

Crazy stuff David - thanks for sharing! Working with that kind of DoF must be frustrating. I assume the footage was all manual focus?


Yes crazy DoF. Min. aperture is F32. The lens is 5X on a full frame sensor of the A7s. It only focuses manually. In fact the best way to focus is to lock focus and slide back and forth. Breathing will cause camera movement. UW with scuba its hell and I breath hold too many times. Top side a little easier. Picking the right subject matters too. Too big and I could only shoot the eye and other extremities. Need to be just right. For example the Ant on the last video is perched on a bamboo chopstick and the Ant Mimic Jumping Spider is only the size of a grain of rice.


The Nauticam A7 housing is great. Just the right size and weight for long static holds. I also use a short tripod. The custom lens and port with built in lights will be revealed when I tested with the GH4. That M4/3 sensor is going to give twice the magnification to the 5X lens. LOL 


How has the A7S been for other U/W shooting? Can it see in the dark at depth as it has been reported to on land?


The A7s is the most light sensitive camera out there now. UW it is also as good for low light as top side. The trick is  setting ISO to no higher than 32000. Yup it is clean right up to there. At 60000 its grainy but not bad grain. I have to set the video light set at lowest setting most of the time. This camera could shoot with just a dive light for macro. Colour and white balance on the other hand is difficult to get right. I use S log2 and I have not been able to MWB the different clips to match the colours. I even tried UW mode which works sometime in shallow water. Quite a tricky profile to use. In the first video I tried one of the more saturated profiles and I like how the colour pops. Currently the A7s records at XACVs 8-bit. Not a lot I could do in post before the image breaks up. May be with the Atomos Shogun and at 4K I could do a lot more. Like cropping and stabilization in post.  


This was a first test with the system. I also used the Nikonos V adapter by Nauticam. Tried with the Nikonos V 15mm, 20mm even the Sea and Sea Nikonos 12mm. All performed superbly. There will be one video showing wide close up shots. I just need to work on the colour balance. Tricky with this camera or may be just my ineptness :)





#353017 Lembeh Straits Extreme Macro

Posted by CheungyDiver on 27 September 2014 - 02:28 PM

Hi Folks


I have just finished a series of video clips from the Lembeh Straits using a Sony A7s, Nauticam housing and my custom 5X lens. A DIY led light integrated macro port plus two RG Blue lights. Here is the first one. I used a saturated grading style as I am interested in bringing out the color and texture. Even aperture at F32, DOF is paper thin.  A bit of vignette is added. Hope you will enjoy it. 







#348918 GH4 footage and rig pic

Posted by CheungyDiver on 10 June 2014 - 06:56 PM

There is a Broadcast Asia Show next week in Singapore. I shall take a good look at the Atomos Shogun recorder/monitor for myself. This would make a nice combo with the GH4. It would be even better if these two devices could be combined in some ways to make the housing more like a conventional video camera housing IMHO.

#347153 Magic Lantern V1.2.3

Posted by CheungyDiver on 01 May 2014 - 10:54 PM

You're the man EunJae!!


I use the Lexar card. 64GB. The bus speed from buffer to card limits the write speed and 1000x seems to be the limit for Canon anything camera. Good to know 128GB chip finally could do do what 64GB cards could do. Turn off all non essential functions.....Yeah ML Raw is great on the 5D MIII....


I awaits in awe for your next post of your UW video....





#347138 Dream Camera :- Walley POS-86

Posted by CheungyDiver on 01 May 2014 - 05:10 PM

I must confess I have found my dream camera....it is what I always wanted and more.......