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errbrr

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Everything posted by errbrr

  1. Yes, I've had success in environmental/conservation competitions. Some of the categories can be very strange when thinking about them in an underwater context. I suspect judges for competitions that don't have an underwater category are not across the difficulty factor of some images.
  2. Very non-tech. Obviously I spend too much time with ninja-all-in-black-drysuits-too-cool-for-school cave divers Retractable lanyards are a no-no generally for me.
  3. What did you end up buying? Just a thought on "dim" primary lights. If you are shooting ambient light wide angle shots, even a dim primary light will need to be moved out of shot if you want to expose for any background sunlight. If you are shooting macro, in caves, or don't need any sunlight/greenwater in your shot, dim primary lights work great. I used a 750 lumen Dive Rite LED canister for ages and at shutter speeds of 1/160 or 1/200 it didn't show up. When I had a canister light I would clip the head to my chest d-ring and let it hang straight down. Now I have an all-in-one primary and I clip it to the handle of the housing so it hangs straight down. I can grab it for use as a focus light, or drop it to get it out of the shot. Plus enough scatter from it to illuminate approximately what's going on around me, and for my buddies to see where I am.
  4. The magic word when flying Garuda is "scuba diving". Gets you the extra bag per person, very handy.
  5. As a tech diver, I use a pair of Shearwater Petrels. As a photographer, I put eneloop AAs in them because I have hundreds of them. I get about 20 hours out of each battery I think. I don't really keep track - easy enough to pull the battery and charge it with the rest of the strobe batteries. The advantage of the newer Shearwaters (Perdix, Teric) is that they have an inbuilt compass. Helpful for consolidating gear when the boat driver tells you to swim a certain way to hit the wreck. I haven't seen anyone in the water with a console computer in a very long time, at least not unless they were a newbie using hire gear. And I tend to keep my primary computer on my right wrist as this is the one I hold the camera with for shooting. That way it's always out in front of me and easy to glance at. I guess this is a strange habit for those who wear watches in their dry life but there's not as many of those people as there used to be.
  6. If you need both hands in a hurry and don't mind floating away, you can put your camera between your knees while you get sorted. I'm with the tether-free gang. Though I have a clip on the camera for clipping it off to myself, on a normal dive I wouldn't use it. Just carry the rig in my hands all the time from jump in to pass up.
  7. PNG no longer engage in too much cannibalism so no need for the tourists. Cargo is relatively unaffected beyond a few extra quarantine days in port.
  8. PNG citizens have no interests in dying, thanks very much. The PNG public are campaigning to close the borders to protect their health over the economy and the government has responded. No international flights inbound to PNG from Sunday. Qantas and Virgin have both cancelled all international flights from Australia from June 30. Australia is denying entry to all non-residents from 9pm tomorrow. NZ has already started this. For the minute, travel is off. I guess we'll see what happens with a grand reopening at some point later in the year...if this works.
  9. Probably saving yourself hours of frustration I hope you take at least $170 worth of beautiful pictures with it!
  10. I use semi-manual focus with my 14mm in caves, where it's usually too dark for fast autofocus. By this I mean I move to back button focus, focus once, then shoot repeatedly. On a normal dive I'd take 150 photos and refocus four or five times (mostly to check I didn't hit the focus button by accident and wreck things). I'm rarely doing CFWA so a focal distance of 1m to 5m works great. Usually shooting at f8 to f16 behind a dome. From that experience I would say that if you can find the focus point first, you're good. But it may be hard to find...as you know the focus above water bears no resemblance to the focus underwater.
  11. I tried this domestically in Australia. The airline was fine with it but security really didn't like it. They said the whole thing was heavy, spiky and metal and therefore a weapon. I stopped myself from pointing out that if I put it in a non-padded bag it was still heavy, spiky and metal but now with an extra swinging handle. Smiled nicely, promised not to do it again and they let me through. That was in Sydney. I travel with mine fully assembled in an Osprey Porter 46 backpack which has good side padding/protection. It's heavy but fits fine. I can even get a few extra strobes in there plus a jumper and scarf. Laptop bag or "purse" as a personal item, shoulder massage on arrival and I'm golden.
  12. I flew into PNG yesterday. All international flights must now land in Port Moresby for heath screening. This was a paper questionnaire and every passenger getting their ear temperature taken on arrival. They are asking about travel to/through China, whether you are a health care worker and whether you've had contact with a confirmed case. PNG is also re-routing all international boat traffic to three ports for a mandatory 7 day hold before being allowed to visit other PNG ports. Personally I think this is a good idea for PNG as they don't have a health system able to deal with a crisis. Three weeks ago I went to Canada (Vancouver) and there was nothing in arrivals despite being a major port for Asian travellers.
  13. No specific ideas, but are you a cave diver? Maybe try the the "proper" cave diving shops as opposed to the dive shops that focus on cenote tours for visiting regular divers, as they will definitely have big cave diving lights for rental and maybe video lights as well. If you're desperate a bit of plastic milk carton as a diffuser over the end of a really bright narrow-beam cave diving light works ok for video.
  14. If you are stuck with doing your own measurements and sending them to a shop, it may also help to send some indicative pictures of your body type so they know what they're aiming for. Worked well for me with a semi-dry made in Sydney while I was in Melbourne. I highly recommend a custom wetsuit and I fit relatively well into standard ones. The difference in the custom semi-dry was amazing. It fit so well that the water didn't start to get into the thing until 5 minutes into the dive yet I could move through the cave easily (and roll over rocks without damaging the suit, which was the main goal).
  15. Love the nurse sharks! I also had a great dive with them there. I found the Maldives extraordinarily frustrating while I was there - lots of blue water dives with not much going on. Certainly it was clear that the liveaboard staff were expecting many, many more sharks than we were seeing. But when I got home and reviewed the results I had a much great number of keepers than usual. So the encounters were fruitful even if they were short and spread out between a lot of hanging around and waiting for animals to show up!
  16. I send them an invoice with two lines on it. One for the photo charge, and the second for unauthorised use. Usually I get an angry reply and they remove it without paying. The ones who pay are the legit businesses who left an ignorant intern unsupervised. I think people who crop watermarks are guiltier than those who lift the whole photo. I watermark and also resize everything I post on facebook to 1200 pix across and 150kb. Fine for people to phone browse while on the train, less useful for would-be thieves.
  17. When I started with a DSLR in 2009, I used my Dad's ikelite strobes from the 1980s. They were great in terms of light output, less good in terms of size and weight, but very reliable. Strobes should outlast your camera and are very transferable to your next rig. Unlike almost everything else you buy! Better to invest in one good strobe than two cheap ones you will have to replace later. For secondhand, make sure you get a look at the tubes. Brown flecks or brown tubes indicate the strobes have been used dry or in warm water enough to overheat. As well as reducing the light output, the internals may be slightly cooked. You could also have a look at the battery contacts for any sign of previous water ingress. Getting hot or getting wet have been the main failure modes I've seen.
  18. Do they still work? No need to go crazy if so, though Deoxit is good stuff. More worrying is the threads which may glue themselves to the threads on your sync cable after a bit. I've found it beneficial to remove the build up of gunk and leave open to dry periodically.
  19. The acrylic on Nauticam domes is user replaceable, no special tool required. The Nauticam replacement acrylic comes with a new o-ring for sealing it in with and is substantially cheaper than a new complete dome. As for scratches on the insides - sorry, I don't have a magic bullet for you. Do they show up in photos?
  20. I travel on ATR72s a lot. An Osprey Porter 46 backpack with fully constructed housing with 8" dome and four Z240s will fit sideways in the overhead. This same bag slides in end-on on a 737 or similar overhead locker. This is with just the housing in flat - if you stuff clothing/other on top of it then the bag bulges too much to fit. Of course it weighs 12kg with 5D4, lens, housing and strobes, so depends if they are weighing backpacks or not. Like this but I upgraded the bag to the Osprey which has much better padding and construction.
  21. When I have had this problem before (Rex in regional Australia) they let me "gate check" the delicate bag. This meant they tagged it at check-in, I carried it through security myself and gave it to a guy standing next to the boarding stairs. I then watched him put it in the plane before I climbed on board. Reversed at the destination - waited at the bottom of the stairs for the housing. This way no baggage handlers chucking things or bouncing around between conveyor belts. I don't know what Air Tahiti offer but it might be worth asking at check in.
  22. I am very interested in the WACP2, partly because it does split shots. There are some nice images from Alex Tattersall on Facebook this week. As per the original WACP release it's hard to calculate what lens combinations are going to provide what equivalent to a dome setup. I don't think of my pictures in FOV and the lens distances all become irrelevant. I'm kind of glad I never got around to pulling the trigger on the WACP though as the WACP2 looks to be a better fit for what I want to shoot. Though if the WACP suddenly went to half price I would buy one in a heartbeat. As for the weight...I'm already travelling with a rebreather, camera and six strobes. What's another 7kg??
  23. IATA is the minimum standard. Airlines can impose additional baggage rules. Check out this summary from Virgin Australia: https://www.virginaustralia.com/eu/en/plan/baggage/batteries/ Note the last line of the table that says NiMH batteries as spares (not in equipment) may not be checked in. Also limited to 20. I usually travel with 48 spare AA eneloops (6 strobes x 4 batteries x 2 sets) and tbh usually check them in without issue. But according to the airline this is not allowed and they can choose to enforce whatever additional requirements they feel like. Or whatever interpretation the check in person has, which may be quite different from the security person's interpretation. In short, check and print the airline page! If asked, smile and produce said page while being non-confrontational about it.
  24. My understanding is that this is intended to produce consistent colour - useful for scientific comparisons where different shots may have different water distance between camera and subject. I haven't seen anything suggesting it be used "recreationally"? Personally I shoot underwater because I want the photos to look like they were taken underwater...
  25. Agree with Tim - best to carry a copy of the rules you think apply, if you need to negotiate at the airport. Remember that individual airlines can have stricter rules. I traveled on an airline that only allowed two batteries per device - one installed, one spare. But they only asked at check-in, didn't actually inspect anything. I once got pulled out by a terminal announcement and taken to the bowels of the airport to remove 4 x AA eneloops in one plastic case from my checked baggage. This was for a domestic flight out of Melbourne. It's a good thing they pointed out the AAs on the xray of the baggage, otherwise I would have dug out the small lithium battery I had also checked in that bag without really thinking about it. All the other times I've checked AAs in plastic cases with no problems. The rules are so inconsistently applied.
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