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Everything posted by randapex

  1. #15 is a beauty. Love the background, really makes the shot pop. #17 is also nice. Love the first Parrot fish shot. Great colors and pose. Rand
  2. Hi Alex, it's taken me all morning to get through your pics. (too many phone calls ). It's great that you can take so many fine pics while under those constraints. My quick comments: I liked your Stargazer, it's so hard to get something different with those critters, the 'V' shape at the back really adds to the composition. That blennie on the Clam shot is great. Maybe the 150mm would have brought things in tighter but I'd never argue composition with you (Too much anyway ). The first Pygmy shot is a knockout. DOF is perfect and I love the personality. And of course the Lionfish, are they courting in that one shot? Love the underbelly shot with the blue background. re: The videographer. I've always assumed they'd like to get an action shot of me taking a picture..... Rand
  3. This may be housing specific, but I can slide mine inbetween the left hand ULCS handle and housing. Fits snug and doesn't get in the way. The laynard is attached to the fix light arm. I'd let mine float around initially but then it would invaribly float in front of the lens port at the wrong moment. FWIW Rand
  4. I've learned quite a bit from this thread. Guess my dilema is still the trade off between diffraction vs DOF. Shooting at f20-f25 with the 2x still wasn't giving me much DOF, so f11? Guess I'll find out in Hardy. One more: f25 @ 1/30
  5. Beautiful images Luiz. Blennies can be so comical. I really like the first shot. Rand
  6. Hi acroporos, In my limited experience with the 2x TC last week, maybe 10 dives, here's how I'd answer you: DOF at those magnifications is so thin, that even if you could, say double it, by any means you choose. the real world difference isn't worth talking about. By that I mean, I'm pretty much convinced that I'd be better off at wider apertures so my lighting issues could be resolved. And apparently at the same time, reduce diffraction. So if the question is the DOF differences between a full and cropped sensor noticeable, I'd say they'd be miniscule with a 105mm and 2x TC. There is no DOF to begin with, so, two times 0 is still...0 Rand
  7. Good suggestions. If I ever find a dive Op that supplies wheelbarrows for transporting camera gear to and from the boat, I think they'd be tops on my list. Rand
  8. I'm not sure if the "Trophy's" are the same year to year, but what I recieved last year is very nice. It's really a plaque with a nice reproduction of my photo somehow set into the plaque and then covered with a hard, clear plastic coating. And nice printing on it for the place and so forth. My regular prize was a fairly inexpensive photo editing program. But, in the end, I can see the plaque everyday and only dream of the dive trips so, it's not a bad prize. Rand
  9. I did the test and it will stay at 2.8 with the TC added so I'm fairly certain, it's not recognizing it. And it is the Kenko TC. Joe, thanks for posting that shot. The eyes are incredibly sharp. Your point is well taken on stablizing. I've found that supporting the port by cradeling it in my open left palm really helped. The real positive on this type of shooting is fantastic air consumption
  10. Herb, FWIW, the D2x doesn't adjust f stop # if the TC is on, I can add or remove it at f20 for instance and it won't change. What I did find, is the max aperture will drop from f40 to f32 as you zoom. Rand
  11. Thanks for the explaination Herb. I'll test that out tonight and see how the camera responds. I do seem to recall getting some high f stop readings, ie f45. Also at one point, of having the camera read with a strange symbol: <f7 and it wouldn't change with the aperture wheel being turned. Some of my shots read f0 so I'm not sure if I've got a faulty connection with the TC or some other issue. After the dive, I removed the TC put the 105mm back on and the f stops read correctly. As for the Woody's. I'd taken some shots with and without the diopter and I'd say that with it, the subject was roughly 50% bigger than without. Perhaps getting me in the area of 3-1. Thanks for the calculation. Rand
  12. Herb, I've been meaning to ask if you have any idea of reproduction ratio achieved with the combonation of 105mm, 2xTC and the Woody's?? Rand
  13. Herb, thanks for the comparison and the pics. The main difference between yours and mine, besides the the fact you were using a 1.4 instead of the 2x, which we can put aside for now, (Some say the 1.4 is sharper) is that the Woody's diopter, was also attached. As to what affect it has/had on overall sharpness, I'm not sure. Enough people complain that by it'self, the Woody's isn't all that sharp. I'd like to thank everyone who's contributed as it's given me some ideas, answers and more questions. So, very productive. What I'll try next time: Shutter speed needs to be pushed up. Open up the aperture a bit. Maybe trying around f18-f20. The Mosshead Warbonnets in Port Hardy are larger than the blennies but have the same fringes on top so DOF will still be an issue. I'd love to fill the frame with one of those guys. They're about the size of your little finger. Perhaps push the ISO up a little. See how that affects the exposures. And find out if the overall image quality is still acceptable. Look at strobe positioning and see if it's possible to move them forward a bit farther. Rand
  14. Guess when someone produces a camera that keeps that 100% crop tack sharp, I'll think of making a change. Until then....
  15. Here it is: Herb, I found a little better one as far as sharpness goes:
  16. Ok, tried something different. Took the orginal to 100% set the marquee tool at 600x400 and this is the result:
  17. James, unsharpend image? Ohh, the pain Here's a try. Didn't have the raw file here at work for the second one posted that was a bit sharper so I found one that is reasonalbly sharp. I did find the actual pixels and clicked on it for this: Then I set the marque tool for 300x200 but saw no place to click on actual pixels so this may or may not be a proper crop:
  18. Not sure I'm doing this right. If I blow the image up to 200% and then crop, is the resulting picture a 100% crop? I've heard this term before but not sure how to do it. Anyway, here's the crop after expanding to 200%
  19. Hi James, good stuff. Beautiful Pygmy shot. Yes, I was using the Fisheye. And at full power as seeing sharp focus, so critical and very difficult to hold still. Subject to lens was very short, maybe 3". It was really exciting to use this setup. Detail on some of the shots was really amazing. You start to see, for want of a better word, individual pixel colors on the fish. Going from what I'd call a nice even paint job to highly magnified details on the indvidual color components. Whatever they are called. Here's one more, full frame f29 @ 1/30. No Woody's just the 2xTC: Rand
  20. Hi Luiz, The bulk of the shots were taken with the strobes on either side of the port, pushed forward just a bit beyond. On the last day, when shooting the 105mm with just the Woody's, I put one strobe over the top and flat blew out the scene. So, I'm not sure if maybe my strobes aren't always loading up, or the extra glass on the 2xTC is hindering the light path or what. Thanks Herb, that conversion certainly didn't occur to me. That's really cranked down. Wow.
  21. Now I wish I'd kept my "Lead in shots" as you would see the progression of better exposure as the shutter slowed down. But they're all in garbage. Alex, I'd never doubt what you're saying and you have the pictures to prove it. But all I can say is, at 1/100, the exposure was very dark. Of course, there is the possiblity, along with the shutter adjustments, there was some re-positioning of the strobes as well. Just don't remember. Thanks for the input. My Port Hardy trip will furnish a wealth of macro subjects to further my experimentation. As you said, the profile shots are a better option for DOF but I waited an eternity for my mouth wide open shot but it never happend. As an aside, Capt. Piers, an accomplished photographer on the Aggressor, also mentioned to me that 1/20 to 1/30 was appropriate for shooting these blennies with a teleconverter. Rand
  22. I'd like to hear any ideas on this style of shooting. I've seen some terrific shots using diopters, Teleconverters etc. and finally had not just the opportunity, but the time to dedicate to learning more about "micro" photography. My main question concerns aperture and f stops. The below photo, which isn't that much in and of itself, is a good example of how these blennies require some DOF to capture the mouth back to the fringe. Shot at f29 @ 1/25 ISO 100. Although I was able to capture static poses, whenever the blennie shot out to grab something, the resulting image was blurred due to low shutter speed combined with the shallow DOF. So my question is, would a higher ISO be the soloution? The Inons were not up to lighting the subject at such high f stops when the shutter was cranked up to say 1/80. I'm hoping to try a more powerful strobe next time out as well. In general, even with the 2x teleconvert and the woody's, lighting wasn't that difficult. Just needed more power. The other question I had, what's the next logical progression to increase the subject size? 150mm with 2x or? This is full frame:
  23. I'm surprised to hear you don't like the viewfinder. I spent a week diving without it and had real problems seeing the complete frame and had many badly composed images that looked fine when shot. That problem went away with the addition of the viewfinder. My rubber cup on the viewfinder was lost sometime ago and I've been shooting without it and truly loving the results. What I see is what I get. Maybe there's just some differences in our tecnique. Not sure. As Ryan suggested, try the ULCS handles. These handles are adjustable in or out to get the best position for your fingers to reach the buttons/knobs. But Subal could do a better job. The Dome port cover? LOL! You're right. That switch issue drove me nuts until I figured out why the autofocus wouldn't work. I was bumping it when disengaging from manual to auto focus. I could live with all the above problems if the Shutter speed knob worked proplerly. Rand
  24. Nudis are fantastic Larry. I'm amazed at the similarities to B.C. Canada life. Wolfish, Those rose colored anemones and the nudibranchs. The second topside shot really catches the mood of a cool morning. Great pics. Rand
  25. Steve, I stayed at the Patra Bali. Just a short (minutes) cab ride from the airport. Huge property right on the beach. Several pools, bars restuarnts. Hardly anyone there at the time I stayed in December. Large rooms, very clean. Had room service dinner, breakfast, laundry done and it was less than $60 for the night as I recall. The prices quoted are pretty high so maybe a call to your travel agent would help. Went through one that was in Bali although the savings weren't worth the hair pulling trying to communicate with them for the Hotel stay and my airline reservation to Manado. http://baliwww.com/index/hotel_detail/overview/71.html Rand
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