John E. Randall’s new South Pacific ID book
Jack E. Randall and the University of Hawai’i Press have published a new fish identification book from the South Pacific. This book may be more interesting than other ID books because it is full of entries containing scientific names, dates described, and accounts by the author(s) who first described the fish.
The UH Press site is running a 20% sale through the month of May, but if would like to purchase the book after May, you can use this .pdf coupon for 20% off until the end of the 2005.
UR Pro Shallow Water Filter Review
Alex Mustard reviews the new UR Pro SW-CY shallow water filter, which was designed for available light photography in tropical waters between 0 and 25ft. This new filter will be available in June 2005.
Excerpt: “UR Pro’s Colour Correction filters have long been favourites of videographers. A quote from Stan Waterman on the UR Pro website sums it up for me: “URPRO filters provided dependable color balance to an otherwise monochromatic blue world…I depend on them”. If they are good enough for Stan, then I reckon they are worth a try…”
Wide Angle White Balance
There is an excellent discussion going on in the forums about techniques for obtaining the proper white balance for a wide angle photo. The discussion primarily centers around mixed lighting photography (no filters) where the photos are taken in RAW format and the white balance is set using the software converter. We also have a few articles on this topic in the Wetpixel Features section with more coming soon.
Kata 103 Camera and Laptop Backpack
A few weeks ago, I purchased a KATA 103 backpack for toting around my digital camera kit. I haven’t taken the bag on a divetrip yet, but I did use it last week for a day-trip offshore where I photographed an offshore platform from a helicopter and made an engineering and site photography visit. To get there, I flew on a commercial airliner, took taxicabs, and finally a helicopter - at no point did I feel I was missing any neceessary equipment and I never feered for my camera or laptop. The bag met and exceeded my expectations. Read the full article to see photos of how I laid out the pack for my camera equipment.
Canon 1D/1Ds Mk II and Lexar 80X compatibility problem
At the end of last year, I started losing images when using a Canon 1Ds Mk II with Lexar 80X compact flash cards. Actually, the problem was that the camera would lock up completely, forcing me to abort dives to fix the problem (the fix required battery removal—highly inconvenient, while underwater).
After five months of silence, Canon and Lexar have finally issued service notices acknowledging that the problems “may occur.” A firmware update is expected before the end of May (continue reading)...
Light & Motion Announces Bluefin HD
Light & Motion has announced the Bluefin HD housing for the Sony High Definition HDR-FX1 and HVR-Z1U camcorders. The Bluefin HD is constructed from machined, industrial-grade aluminum and is depth rated to 400 feet. Full press release follows.
Sony Announces HDR-HC1 palm-sized HD camcorder
Today, Sony announced the HDR-HC1 HD camcorder, which is 1/2 the size and 1/3 the weight of the larger HDR-FX1 announced last year. It weighs 680 grams without a battery, and is scheduled to ship in July for a retail price of roughly 180,000 yen ($1,684). The HDR-HC1 uses a single CMOS sensor instead of using three, like the FX1 does. Full press release follows. (Update: the professional version of this camera will be called the HVR-A1U; it includes an XLR audio module)
Monterey Bay Aquarium’s White Shark
The Monterey Bay Aquarium has issued a report about the whereabouts of the captive young white shark released in March.
“It’s clear she survived and thrived after release,” said Dr. Randy Kochevar, a marine biologist with the aquarium and a principal investigator with the Tagging of Pacific Pelagics (TOPP) project—a research collaboration that maps the migrations of many open-ocean species in the northern Pacific. “There’s no question that she was hunting and feeding on her own.”
I guess she recovered from having her nose rubbed off.