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Everything posted by oneyellowtang

  1. @RVbldr, My daughter moved from an Oly system to a A7III (with a Nauticam housing) and has been very happy with the results. This (mirrorless) system is significantly smaller and lighter than either the D850 I shoot with or the D500 her brother shoots with. She started only shooting macro, but we recently added the WWL-1B so she could shoot wide, and the results (both in Belize and the Maldives) have been really positive. The zoom through capability of this wet lens has made a huge difference in subject opportunity.
  2. @imacro, The pins in shackles work themselves loose fairly often (if not consistently tightened or without something like loctite applied, etc.). Vibration is the primary contributor to pins, screws, etc. working themselves loose over time. Initially I used connections to clamps like you pictured for my lanyard, but then got rid of the shackles entirely, and used stainless split rings (using the same hole that the shackle was in) to then connect my lanyard. Split rings virtually never fail, and given the amount of clamp material the split rings aren't coming off. With my last couple of Nauticam housings I've moved away from this as well - I attach my lanyard directly to the housing through the holes in the metal plates that connect the handles to the top of the housing. I've found this to be both more secure, and easier to handle (although a little harder to hand up to a boat for someone to grab).
  3. Daughter is shooting with the WWL-1 here in the Maldives at the moment. Very impressed with the image quality and ease of diving with it. Not just well balanced underwater, but small enough to not be a pain with heavy current, etc. (this coming from someone pushing a WACP-1 through the water on these same dives).
  4. @rwb500 - as mentioned above, it's not usually the leak potential that causes people to go fiber optic, it's the potential failures in the field when in the middle of a dive trip. If saltwater gets in to the pins you can lose functionality and get strobe misfires or situations where the strobes won't fire at all. It's definitely worth updating to fiber optic, although many still dive with electronic strobe connectors w/out issues, just have to be diligent.
  5. @Architeuthis Interesting question: in all the times I've used it I never really concerned myself with this (because the aiming light doesn't show up in the images...). Tomorrow I'll do a check - in a couple of the videos I've seen it looks like the aiming light turns off right as the strobe is firing [the image is not lit by anything the immediate moment following the strobe firing - then the aiming light will come back on).
  6. I have the Retra LSD, and have used it snooting using both a Retra Pro and a Z330. Bluntly, the Backscatter mini flash & snoot is a better combo than either of the above. It's *just* easier... Shooting macro now, I usually carry 2 Z330's, and the Backscatter strobe set up with the snoot as well. When snooting I just turn off the Z330s. The level of frustration snooting has massively decreased using this set up...
  7. We finally moved into a house large enough so that I can have my own (fairly large) closet for underwater camera gear. My wife and I started out by sharing the closet (roughly 50/50 camera gear and her knick-knacks). As she takes stuff out of this particular closet (to use, etc.) I subtly spread stuff out a bit to appropriate more space. I'm up to about 70% of the closet now, aiming for 90% eventually Having everything laid out on shelves (small bits in bins), lenses sitting upright, etc, makes it much easier to find stuff (and also makes you realize it might be time to jettison some stuff - why do I have 5 different housings, incl. one for a D90?)
  8. @Mwit If you can get the dimensions this is absolutely something you can have 3-D printed for you. I have several lens caps that were printed...
  9. @troporobo One point of clarification: The amount of viral shedding from someone who has been fully vaccinated has been estimated to be 5x-20x less than someone who has not been vaccinated. This is basic virology - the virus needs to replicate in a host to shed - the current set of vaccines slow/reduce virus reproduction within a host. There is currently no scientific evidence that suggests someone who has been fully vaccinated is either as likely/less likely/more likely to transmit the virus, there are only a few emerging reports on post vaccination viral spread so far (ex: from Israel).
  10. @stuartv My daughter shoots with the A7III (she has the A7R4 for land work as well). There are a large number of u/w photographers that start heading down that path of looking to build a system that can theoretically shoot both macro and w/a on the same dive. As both @TimG & @adamhanlon allude to, shooting macro is not just about what the gear can do, it's the mindset (subject size, substrate, behavior, etc. all play a role in this). My daughter shoots with the 90mm and the flat port on most dives, and has never really wished for anything else on a macro-focused dive (well, there was that one dive in Bangka when a dugong swam by, but that's another story). She does shoot with the 28mm and the WWL-1 for w/a, and enjoys that as well. If you are just looking to document what you see u/w, give the 28-60 a try with a close up lens, but even at 60mm (on a full frame) it's going to feel like you want more reach. The 90mm is a very high quality lens, you will notice the difference shooting the 90mm vs. the 28-60. In addition, my macro set up and w/a set up differ by more than just the lenses used. For macro I choose shorter arm segments, I dive with a focus light (attached to the top of port), and I usually carry a snoot as well. When I shoot wide angle, I'm using longer arm segments, no focus light, and I leave the snoot behind. How I look for subjects is also very different. Last - if you really want to learn how to shoot macro (which can initially be a wee bit frustrating) then I highly recommend a trip to a macro-rich destination like Lembeh or Anilao. You could spend two weeks diving in a destination like these without every seeing a w/a subject (although they do have dives for w/a) nor missing the opportunity. These locations are so rich with macro subjects that you'll spend every dive with a plethora of opportunities to shoot. Not to say there aren't dozens of other great macro locations (including a few closer to home), but some are either harder to get to or aren't quite as rich in subjects, so you may not get as many opportunities to practice.
  11. @lbedogni Some great advice already given, so I'll just add one thing: Are you shooting with any diffusers on your strobes? A diffuser will spread the z240 light out a bit more, lessening the impact of any hotspots.
  12. To be fair... There were solid predictions for the D880 going back to January. There was little doubt that Nikon would actually put this camera into production (anyone who thought this doesn't really understand product development cycles). Definitely a question on the D580, but personally not surprised they are releasing this model as well. Most have predicted this will be cross-over point for mirrorless for Nikon. A high end (pro) mirrorless will likely get released in mid/late 2021, along with some kind of upgrade to the Z6/Z7 lines. As an owner of both a D500 and a D850 (both in Nauticam housings) I'm more interested in the D580 update. If there is a generational improvement in autofocus (and housing availability) I would consider upgrading (my last DSLR update...) Depending on the next gen mirrorless offerings, I would look to move to mirrorless after that (possibly moving to Sony).
  13. @spectralsepia Mike Bartick (Crystal Blue Divers in Anilao) spends much of time diving blackwater now (he's one of the pioneers for this type of diving). He's been shooting video with his D850 and 60mm lens and getting some really good results. I know he's a member here (but couldn't easily find his ID) - he also runs the blackwater group over on Facebook. He would have an informed view of any limitations/advantages of this set up.
  14. @joanna_dives One quick addition on @TimG's great comments... I too went on the same journey. Z240 with the Retra LSD snoot - the offset light makes it that much more difficult to get the image you actually want. I found myself settling for imperfect shots either because of time or frustration. Switched to Retra (Pro) strobes - huge improvement. However, I didn't stop there - the Backscatter Mini Flash & snoot combo looked really interesting - not because it would offer anything more than the Retra LSD snoot (which is excellent), but because it was smaller, and would allow me to potentially dive with my regular macro set up and bring this along as another option on the same dive (w/out having to fiddle with putting a snoot on/taking it off). The pandemic has made it harder to get field time with this setup, but I was able to use it on several dives at the end of last year - from those handful of dives, I'm sold. Very useful specifically on macro-oriented dives where you may want snoot capability and 2 flash macro (non-snooted). The mini flash & snoot combo is small enough to stay mostly out of the way when not needed, and then available when you want it.
  15. Price reduction: $550 USD for the pair (+ shipping if outside US)
  16. For sale: 2 Inon D2000 Type 4 strobes - Tested this week in the pool, both strobes work as advertised (fired using optical connection, electrical connection avail. on strobes as well) - Both have less than 600 shots taken with them (upgraded to larger strobes specifically to shoot large animals/wide angle) - Both strobes in good/very good condition - Always rinsed after use, never flooded - $600 US for the pair or OBO (+ shipping if outside US) Note: - Because these were used with a DSLR, the two (optional) magnets to cancel the preflash (for compact cameras) are not included (easily sourced online for ~$5) - No diffusers included - Ball mounts attached (and included) For reference, for information about this type of strobe (https://www.backscatter.com/Inon-D2000-Underwater-Strobe) Images of strobes for sale:
  17. Costa Rica is open as well, looking at another trip to Cocos. However, since opening up Costa Rica has seen a significant increase in infections and now deaths.
  18. @Akoni Two comments... Background: I still shoot with 2 high end DSLR's, but my kids shoot with Sony mirrorless now. 1. Although I enjoy shooting using an OVF today, AI-driven augmented vision with make EVFs the future in the next several years. It's already true in optical medical equipment and it will be true in photography equipment "soon." The reality is that integrating enhanced AI-driven optics is just easier in EVF, and that will drive the change. If the DSLR format survives, I expect it to do do with EVF augmentation. 2. As an avid reader I've switched almost entirely to consuming written content on my Kindle. Much more flexibility, more portable, can manage multiple sources at once, better in all lighting conditions, more weather resistant, etc. The only type of content left worth consuming on paper are books with numerous scientific (or other) illustrations or older, collectable books.
  19. Diving around Sydney is good to very good, depending on the day. Spent 4 years living there a few decades ago and dove every little cove we thought we could get into (including a couple that we had to rope down into just North of Bondi).Been diving around Sydney on a number of trips back there as well. However, the dive trips up to Byron Bay (esp. Julian Rocks) bordered on world class. ~8 hr drive up from Sydney or short trip down after flying into Brisbane. Mantas, turtles, grey nurse sharks, cuttlefish, nudi's, etc. I would not complain if that was the only diving available during a pandemic... We've been back a number of times - easily better than many typical dives in most places in the Pacific.
  20. How hard did you pull to get the viewfinder out? Mine would take significant force to both unseat the internal o-ring and then pull out the viewfinder. I did check mine, you cannot pull out the viewfinder without physically unseating the inner o-ring. The o-ring looks like it will unseat if the viewfinder is pulled hard enough. I actually forget to seal my housing with a vacuum on a number of dives so it's just the o-rings protecting that particular seal. Having said this, I think the recommendation would be - don't pick up your rig by your viewfinder Also worth mentioning - most of the controls that breach the housing (to connect to a control levers inside) are also only protected by 2 o-rings.
  21. @Ministryofgiraffes Rotating the 45 degree Nauticam viewfinder is actually a design point of the viewfinder. Without this capability it would be virtually impossible to shoot vertically on walls, etc. So having the viewfinder being able to rotate isn't an issue (it would be if it didn't rotate) - the viewfinder itself rotates between the eye piece and the mounting piece (not between the viewfinder and the housing). However, pulling the viewfinder completely out seems like there may be something wrong. There is an O-ring that holds the viewfinder in place (seated at the end of the threads of either the standard viewfinder or the 45 degree viewfinder). You need to take this O-ring off before pushing the standard viewfinder out (to replace it with the 45 degree one), and then reseat this O-ring to hold in the 45 degree viewfinder. For reference (not promoting Blue Water, however their "how to" videos are useful):
  22. @jordango You will not be disappointed with the D500 underwater. It is now my favorite camera to shoot with u/w in almost every situation. Even the weight (compared to an Oly-based system) is not really an issue (esp. when I compare it to my housed D850). On the Aquatica choice - you can't go wrong. I shot with an Aquatica both for film and early digital, and loved their housings. The only reason I switched to Nauticam was because Aquatica was a tiny bit slow moving to optical connections for strobes - and I was tired of the occasional damage to my electronic strobe connections if I didn't seat them properly. Clearly not an issue now. I will also say that Aquatica service was world class (vs Nauticam), being located in Canada was a significant advantage for those of us in the US, and they were just nice as well. No complaints w/Nauticam, just not "legendary" like Aquatica.
  23. @jordango - another vote for the D500. I have both the D500 & D850 (both in Nauticam housings). The D500 has slightly better AF in low light situations, and is a more flexible system. D850 has a few advantages, but none that would ever stop me from enjoying shooting with the D500. FF/mirrorless is the future, but we are not quite there yet. As for housings - you'll find a number of folks who really like Subal - having used both Subal and Nauticam, I prefer Nauticam (partially for the small price savings, and then the number of dealers available in the US). You will not go wrong with either housing. Subal has the reputation for quality, Nauticam is currently leading in innovation (mostly around their increasing number of new ports).
  24. @newdiver I don't think people are necessarily recommending different strobes, I think you are getting recommendations based on what kind of shooting you may do, and what gear you can use today, and what may allow to grow with in the future. It actually ends up being pretty simple: if you think there is any chance you end up moving to a larger system or want to shoot true wide angle scenics, then (as @Andrej Oblak suggests) get the strongest strobe you can afford right now, because you will be able to continue to use it as you grow. Two smaller strobes (now) might be more manageable, but you will potentially outgrow them.
  25. If you are going to focus primarily on macro I can highly recommend the Backscatter mini flash (which I use for snooting macro shots). Easy to use, bright, narrow beam, and compact. As others have suggested, it will be underpowered for most w/a situations, even with 2 mini flashes (except for some CFWA shots). If you want a strobe that can do both, a single Z330 is great start - not going to outgrow this strobe.
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