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davehicks last won the day on January 19

davehicks had the most liked content!

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About davehicks

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    Manta Ray
  • Birthday 04/25/1967

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    Seattle, WA USA

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  • Camera Model & Brand
  • Camera Housing
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Ikelite DS-161's

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  1. I use the optical view finder with a snoot. The one tip I will offer is to use a Red focus light when using a snoot. The aiming light gets lost if using a white focus light, and if it's too dark you can't autofocus. A red focus light will allow you to see the aiming light. Other than that it just takes a bit of practice. Get your snoot lined up on a rock or some stationary target before taking a real shot. I tend to eyeball the scene from above the camera and then go to the viewfinder to fine tune.
  2. Has anyone tried the S&S correction lens with the Nauticam 8.5" acrylic dome? This is what I have currently and would like to hear if this is a good combo. Or is a 230mm (9") dome a must for the correction lens to be of value.
  3. I am really happy with the Backscatter Mini + Snoot. It's the best addition to my camera gear in years. Previous snoot setups I tried were frustrating and difficult to aim and this is a relative breeze. Highly recommended. Here is an example shot of a Pacific Spiny Lumpsucker. Maybe 2-3cm long, shot with D850 & 105mm, Backscater Mini Snoot, SubSea +5 closeup lens. I don't love the "spotlight" effect of a bright circle on black so I add a little fill from an Inon 330 at about 1/8 power off to left the side. [ f/18, 1/250th, ISO 100]
  4. If you handle orings too much they will stretch out over time and fail. I lightly lube the Inon rings before resealing but only occasionally remove them from their slots and clean.
  5. They also always come with a spare oring. It does not really matter. In my opinion you are less likely damage or lose the oring if it is installed and doing it's job.
  6. But why? There are 7 pages here over several years with people explaining how to do it properly. Why follow some youtube bozo?
  7. Get some actual micro mesh. It's nine grades from 1500 - 12,000. And why in the world are you using brasso? Also take off the Hood so you can access the whole dome. Sit down with a bowl of water, a few towels, and watch a movie for TWO hours while you go through the nine grades. It seems like you took a short cut with just three. And get rid of the brasso, you don't need that. https://www.amazon.com/SANDING-SHEETS-INTRODUCTORY-Peachtree-Woodworking/dp/B000H6HIK2/ref=asc_df_B000H6HIK2/?tag=bingshoppinga-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=&hvpos=&hvnetw=o&hvrand=&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=e&hvdev=m&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=&hvtargid=pla-4584345024990910&psc=1
  8. I dive at night frequently and in dark Pacific Northwest waters where a dive light is necessary at all times. I also always dive with my camera. The best approach I have found is to mount a light on the camera housing that can double as a focus light and primary dive light. My backup lights are the integrated spotting lights on my Inon strobes. You will want a light than can easily switch between Flood / Spot / Red modes with multiple power levels on each mode. Don't go with a single mode flood video light such as the Sola 2500. I use the Low Flood setting most of the time, and switch to red for some shots with skittish creatures. The Spot mode is great for looking holes or hunting at range. Mostly I prefer a flood light over spot when just looking at the reef. I'm currently using a Kraken WSRU series light. I like this one a lot over many others I've tried. The light works great and the controls make it easy to switch mode and power levels with separate single press buttons. Some lights require that you press and hold to switch modes or levels which is a very big hassle. Kraken Hydra 3500S+ WSRU Underwater Video Light (backscatter.com)
  9. Don't be afraid to crop. Sometimes I'll pull a strobe into the frame on fisheye to get the lighting right. Then crop out the flash from the image.
  10. Just note that you can see any of the animals at any of the sites. I've been there 3 times and it's different each visit. A wide zoom like the 16-35 can be helpful for sharks that sometimes approach put not too close.
  11. FYI, the Ikelite packs are comprised of 6 NiMH Sub-C cells. They used NiCad over 10 years back before changing to NiMH with an brief ill fated attempt at LiON.
  12. Don't worry about battery power too much if your strobe is new. The strobes will easily run for 300-400 shots a charge. I usually ran a whole day of 3-4 dives with the 161's and charged every night.
  13. I got a full bifocal prescription from them this year. I sent them a brand new Atomic Frameless that I prefer and it came back perfect. It is worth considering getting a second one for backup if you travel on big trips. I had a scare in Galapagos in Feb where I lost my mask early in the trip and thought I might be screwed! Fortunately it was retrieved but it could have been a disaster.
  14. I'm pro lanyard all the time. I clip on a coiled lanyard as soon as I splash. I have had to deal with critical safety and rescue scenarios more than once under water where there is no time for spare for the camera. Not having a lanyard already in place means you either don't deal with the emergency when needed most, or you lose the camera.
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