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Everything posted by msblucow

  1. Would you be willing to sell the strobes separately?
  2. I currently have an Aquatica setup for a Nikon F5 (w/macro and dome ports, strobes - 2 Ikelite 200's and 2 50's. Lenses include Nikon 105mm and 60mm AF macro, 20mm AF wide angle and 14mm Sigma wide angle ). I bought a D90 for land photography in January and am now seriously considering switching over to digital for UW photography. Because I'm a cheapskate, and my current UW kit works great, I want to buy as little as possible to make the conversion. So here are my questions: Will my current Aquatica ports work with the new D90 Aquatica housing. Can I use my current strobes? Thanks in advance for any advice.
  3. FOUND! Thanks for all the replies, but it looks like I've found what I needed.
  4. WTB: AF Micro-Nikkor 105/2.8D lens to replace one I flooded. Not interested in a VR lens. I'm willing to pay a fair price. Please email me at msblucow@mac.com Marta
  5. I won't be able to take it into the water right away, but I did hold it up to the sun at a right angle to see if I could find anything obvious. I think I'm good, but again, taking it underwater would be the real test.
  6. Following the techniques I learned here, I ended up using a Micro-Mesh polishing kit to polish out some large scratches on my acrylic dome port. I'm largely satisfied with the end result, but I noticed there are still some fine cross-hatching for about a 1/2" along the edges. This was the most difficult part of the dome port to work on. However, when I flushed the port with water, the cross-hatching completely disappears. Should I just ignore this like I would any other fine scratches that would fill with water or should I continue to work on the edges until the marks disappear? Thanks, Marta Evry
  7. I know people on this and other boards have raved about their experience on Optiquatics trips, so I'm a bit hesitant to post a negative review, but I'd be interested in getting other people's feedback. I've been shooting for about 7 years - first with a Motormarine IIex and then with a housed nikon f4 (which I still have - I haven't made the switch to digital yet). I feel like I know the basics, but I keep getting inconsistant results which I've found frustrating. I wanted a situation where I could get feedback in an intensive learning environement. So I ended up booking a 3-day Optiquatics trip to the Northern Channel Islands. First the good news - The Peace Boat was fantastic. The crew and boat could not be beat. They hustled like crazy, fed us continuously and were very helpful with any gear problems people had. They were also very knowledgeable and sensitive about handling expensive camera gear. The people on the trip were also great. There were actually three of us shooting film, which was a welcome surprise. Everyone else was shooting digital, including one passenger who brought all her computer and scanning gear and scanned slides as soon as they came out of the E-6 processing! I learned more than a few helpful hints from her and some of the other passengers. And that, actually, was the problem. Because I felt by the end of the trip the only real instruction I received came from my fellow passengers, not Joe the trip leader. While Joe processed E-6 right on the boat so I could get fast feedback, I never received any kind of in-depth analysis of my work except "Get closer". Even when I asked pointed questions about strobe placement, film stocks, etc the answers I got were pretty basic and perfunctery. Not counting the nights everyone spent together at dinner, I think I had maybe 45 minutes of actual conversation with Joe. Some of that was instructional, some of it was just conversation. Worse - and maybe this is because film is on it's way out and us filmasours are just an afterthought these days - I found that Joe was pretty careless with the slides he processed for us. He would bring them out of the bunkroom he was using as a "lab" draped around his neck whle the emulstion was still wet. Dust would stick to the emulsion like a magnet. We had to cut and mount our own slides yet there was no clean workspace set aside for us to do this. When I complained, Joe said once the film was out of his hands, we were responsible for it. He offered no solution for this problem at all. Finally, me and one of the other passengers figured out we could set up a clean surface with some cotton t-shirts so that's what we used for the rest of the trip to cut our strips on. But nearly everything he processed is scratched. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get the slides rewashed and that will help. But it got so bad I finally had to ask Joe to stop processing my material on the last day. I would rather take the film home and lose the feedback than risk getting more film scratched. In the end, my feeling about the trip is that if you're looking for three days of intensive diving where you get to socialize with members of your own photographic tribe and to spread out your gear on a limited load boat with a great crew and fantastic food, this would be a pretty good trip for you. But if you're looking for the kind of trip described on their website, any kind of intensive "workshop" situation or one-on-one instruction to bring your work up to the next level, then you'd probably be disappointed as I was. Any comments and feedback would be appreciated.
  8. It looks like I'll be moving from Los Angeles to Melbourne, Australia for 10 months starting at the end of September. So I have a couple of questions....... 1)What are my best bets for dive ops/sites in the Melbourne area? 2) I plan to leave for Australia a week early so I can get in a week of diving before I start my job. If you had your choice, would you go for the Coral Sea, Indonesia, Lembeh, Fiji, or place 'x'? What operators for your preferred destination would you recommend? Thanks!
  9. Interesting. I had the lens set to minimum focus because part of the test was to see how the strobes reacted with an effective f-stop of f45 or greater. But if I understand you correctly, the minimum focus on land is different than uw because while the actual object I'm photographing appears the same size to my lens uw, it's actually farther away than it would be on land. Would that be correct?
  10. I shot off a couple of rolls of slides today to test out various positions for my Ikelite substrobe 50's. I was shooting macro with a 105mm lens. I shot the rolls above water, on my coffee table. Most of the shots were at f16/125 (Velvia 100). I was surprised that many of the shots were about a stop over-exposed, since this combo works well for me when I'm diving. Does water suck up that much strobe power even though the subject is only a few inches from the lens? Thanks, Marta
  11. Hi all, So here's an esoteric question for those of you who still have dim, fond memories of your film cameras. I want to take rear curtain flash shots, but I've read that the only way to do this is to use the F4 with a Nikon speedlight that has that setting on the flash. There's no control on the F4 itself. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas or thoughts on how (or even if) one could 'fool' the camera into taking rear curtain sync shots without requisite flash. Thanks! Marta Evry, Venice, CA
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