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Posts posted by alanchungsf

  1. Its not so much a question of which housing but of lens coverage, the Tokina will cover a Field Of View of 180 degrees diagonal, the DS-125 will cover +/- 100 degrees with its diffuser, you are going to be short of coverage no matter what housing you select. the usual result is a hotspot fading into blue, I mean you can work around it and select your composition to match it, but its not going to be peachy all the time, If your plan is to stick to one strobe, I would consider the Nikon 10-24mm, the Sigma 10-20mm, the Tokina 12-24mm or 11-16mm all of theses are rectilinear lenses with and average of +/- 100 degrees FOV, that would make single strobe feasible, but you can't beat that Tokina 10-17mm for wham effect! :(


    I think comparing the field of view spec is a little misleading. You're not going to put the strobe right on top of the lens, so their 2 FOV values don't mean the smaller angle of the strobe don't have enough coverage. If your stobe is far enough away from the subject relative to the lens, the strobe's narrower FOV will cover the subject just fine. I do agree it is really all about your composition and subject matter. Example, if you are shooting reef scenes you'll mostly be fine with just 1 strobe, as you'll not need to light the background much. So you can concentrate the strobe on the subject right in front. But if you're trying to shoot sharks or other large fish close up, you'll have to work much harder to get a nicely lit shot.


    I would still get the Tok 10-17, just zoom in a bit, if it is a short term thing rather than get something like the 10-24, just to spend more later to get the Tok when you've your 2nd strobe.



  2. Hi Paul,


    Like Damien said the whole Nikon vs. Canon thing is really a personal preference. I've shot both and both do the job well. So I won't say much on that. Currently I have a D300 in an Ikelite housing with 2 DS125.


    But on the stobes, since you already have a DS125, I think adding a 2nd would be a nice way to go. It is true the Inons are small and light, great for packing. But I like the warmer light from the DS125, if I remember correctly it is 4800K vs. 5500k for the Inons. Your pictures will have a nicely blue water background shooting WA. Also I love the 1 sec recycle of the DS125, it is just fast. The newer DS160 is 1.5 sec I think. The Inons are powered by 4 AAs, while the Ike battery packs are 6 Cs for a lot more juice.


    As for housing, if you want TTL, and already have the DS125, I think it will save you a lot of money to go with the Ikelite housing with the TTL built in. That's basically the chain of logic I followed when I brought my Ike housing for the D300 instead of going with Aquatica or Nexus. I like shooting TTL for macros and I don't want a big, expensive external TTL converter. One more point of failure and more drag in the water.


    My 2 pennies worth. Hope that helped.




  3. I'm cleaning out my camera closet. The system was very well cared for, but have been gathering dust since I upgraded to DSLR. So I hope to find it a good home, the system still has a lot of life in it. Specially the Inon wet lenses.


    What I'm hoping to sell:


    1. Inon UWL-100 Wide Angle lens - Used but in perfect condition, no scratches anywhere. New it is $330, asking $250.


    2. Inon Dome Unit for UWL-100 - Brand new, never used. I got it right before I switched to DSRL. New it is $390, asking $330.


    3. Inon UCL-165-M67 Macro Lens - Used only 4 or 5 times. It looks brand new. New it is $150, asking $110.


    4. Olympus PT-015 housing & a working Olympus C-5050 Zoom. It's an old camera but still works great. Never flooded. Hoping to get $175, or make me an offer.


    5. Pelican Case 1450 with divider insert. Perfect size to hold this system with a strobe. New it is $120, asking $75.


    Will sell separately, but if you buy the whole lot I'll give you a 10% off the price. I'll ship USPS Priority Mail, buyer pay actual shipping costs. PM me if you have any questions




  4. Hi,

    I've been searching in WP and in google but still didn't find a simple answer:

    Which Ikelite ports do I need for my Sigma 10-20mm (with Ikelite D80 housing) both options: 6" dome and 8" dome.

    I really got "disoriented" with what I've read. Please help, I'll be grateful if someone with this lens could tell me: get this and that ports.

    And yes... I know about the no-zooming problem with this lens & Ikelite, I guess I could do without it.



    The 6" port is 5503.50

    For the 8" dome, you'll need the dome 5510.45 + the correct port body 5510.16


    The 6" is cheaper, and smaller, but the 8" will give you better pictures. So you need to decide what's more important to you.


    The ikelite port chart is here: http://ikelite.com/web_pages/2port_nikon.html

    I don't have that lens but the port chart doesn't say any issues with zooming, so you should have no problems with the zoom.


    Hope that helped.




  5. There's certainly no good reason you shouldn't be able to "get a decent exposure" with a D300 - that's most certainly operator error and most likely not the camera's fault.


    Either that or there's something wrong with your copy of D300. Have you thought about sending it into Nikon Service to have it checked out? I've 3 D300 bodies and I've to say its metering is very accurate even in tough lighting situations.

  6. I have been looking at the web site Dxomark.com and comparing Nikons. Despite the D90 being a "lower speced" camera to the D300 it rates better in every regard according to the dxomark tests. I put this down to newer technology.


    My main interests are high iso and dynamic range.


    Sooo.... can I expect the D300s to be better again? Or will its specs be tied to the D300.


    Dxomark haven't as yet included the D300s in their test results. I emailed them asknig when but no reply.


    Thanks to Sam Chae my Nexus D200 housing can fit the D300 but I feel the D300 camera may not be a quantum enough leap for the dollars. I am happy to forego video controls to put the D300s inside only if it is better with high iso and dynamic range.


    Any thoughts?




    In DPReview's testing of the D90, they say the D300 still out performs the D90. Just another data point. http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/NikonD90/page33.asp


    Nikon says the sensor in the D300s is the same as D300, but they could have improved other parts of the processing chain to get better IQ. But my guess is any improvement would be minimal. Personally I'm keeping my D300 as I'm quite happy with it and I don't need video. I would say if you can find a good used D300 that would be a good bargain, and shoot 14 bits RAW for the best dynamic range. If you really need great high ISO performance then the D700 is the way to go over D90, D300 or D300s. I owned a D200, and IMHO the D300 is a big quantum leap over the D200. The D300 is even than my D2x. So I would say it is a totally worth while upgrade to refit your housing to either the D300 or D300s.




  7. On our trip to Raja I went with "the go big or go home" strategy. Took the Tokina 10-17mm, Nikon 105mm VR, 1.4 teleconverter, Macromate Doubler and must admit took the Sigma 17-70mm. In the end I shot the 10-17mm 50% of the time, the 105mm 40% and the 17-70mm 10%. Reality is in Raja you can always find stuff to fit the lens you have. Only minor regret would have been the 60mm on night dives. Gallery http://www.aquabluedreams.com/staticpages/pid/G/60


    I agree. Just got back from Raja Ampat last week. I used my Tokina 10-17mm, and Nikon 105mm VR about 50/50. I did use my Nikon 12-24 on 2 dives out of 34, but mostly I preferred the 10-17. I also missed my 60mm a little, it died after 1 dive. The AFS motor gave out, I think. It was sent to Nikon service and I'm waiting to get it back. But having only the 105mm forced me to learn how to use it, since it is a new addition to my kit. One less decision to make on the macro dives. I was pretty happy with the results I got from the 105mm.


    Now what I cannot imagine is the 105 with a teleconverter and the Macromate. I've hard enough time finding the subject with just the 105mm in current. I guess I've more to learn.


    Have fun!





    PS. Great gallery! Really enjoyed seeing your shots.

  8. Hi,


    I have the 36 LED mounted on my Ikelite using the 3" Fantasea focus light adaptor from Ultralight. http://www.ulcs.com/strobes.html It is top picture, the right most one. It has a regular ball on one end, so you'll need a clamp and the post that goes into the Ikelite handle. You can either get that from Ikelite or from Ultralight. I like the Ultralight ones, their clamps are much better than Ike's clamps. I think the 44LED should fit the same way. This works great because the length of that Fantasea focus light adaptor will put the light right about centered over your lens port from your handle.


    If you eventually go dual strobe, Ultralight makes a triple clamp.


    Hope that helps.




  9. Hi, just want to share my experience with my Fantasea 360. I got it after reading this threat. There's good news and bad. The bad is it flooded on the very first dive of a 2 week trip. But fortunately it was not a bad flood, I was able to rescue it after soaking it in fresh water for an hour and letting it dry for the next 2 days. It came back to life with only 2 of the 36 LEDs burnt out. Even the 4 rechargable AAs were fine. So that's the good news. I think the flooding was caused by a lack of instructions. There are 2 grooves below the screw thread, and the o-ring fits either groove, so I initially put the o-ring in the groove that is closer to the battery compartment. That is the wrong choice, it should go on the other groove. I suspect some of the floodings I've read in reviews are caused by this problem. No where does the instructions say which groove should the o-ring go into. After I got it working again, I decided to be super safe and put the spare o-ring in the 2nd groove so I had 2 o-rings. But be warned it was super hard to open it even with well greased o-rings. It took 2 people and a good port wrench to unscrew it. But it stayed dry the rest of 2 weeks, even with deep dives to over 100ft.


    The other good news is once I got it working, it worked great with my Nikkor 105 macro lens. It was bright and the beam pattern was wide enough that I didn't need to aim it much during my dives. In terms of battery life it is good but no where near as good as it's claim of 30 hours. I found it would get dimmer after 2-3 hours of use, and I had to recharge after 4 hours. Which is fine because that meant it lasted the whole day even if I shot only macro, and I can recharge at night.


    Overall I liked the light and it really helped me get some great shots of pygmy seahorses that would have been hard without.

  10. I had one to try for a short time and found it had much greater distortion than the 12-24 on the surface. I did not try it underwater.

    It does not internal focus as the 12-24. and is just a couple of mm longer than the 12-24.

    Not worth spending an additional 899 since I already own the 12-24.


    The reason I'm keen on getting some underwater feedback on the new lens even though I own the 12-24 is because I've not purchased the Ike 8" dome port extension for the 12-24 yet. And I also haven't picked up the diopter set to go with the 12-24 that I've read I'll need to get sharp corners. So I was thinking if the closer focusing 10-24 is sharper without diopters, I can sell the 12-24 + save the money from buying the diopters, before I get all the port accessories for the 12-24. Dad always said measure twice, cut once :)


    I was shooting a Canon 20D in an Ike housing before, but I switched back to Nikon with the D300 on land a few years back. Traveling with 2 sets of gear is too much, so I finally sold all my Canon gear, and I'm getting a new Ike housing for the D300. Which is why I've the lens but don't have the diopters and extension yet. My next trip is in Aug, so I've a little bit of time, but I hope to have my rig set up by July to do some testing before I head to Indonesia.




  11. Now that the Nikon 10-24 is shipping, has anyone gotten one and compared it to the older 12-24? I was wondering if the closer focusing and the potential to go without diopters make it a better and sharper lens underwater. Above water the reviews seem to be split on the IQ of the new vs. old.




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