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About inflex

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    Sea Nettle

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  1. I find it helpful to separate the issues of backscatter and diffusers. 1. Think of backscatter as a function of light intensity aimed at the water column between your lens and your subject. The closer your strobe is to this column of water between your lens and subject, the more intense the light will be. The more you aim your strobe at this water column, the more intense the light is. You need to adjust your strobes such that their beams light as little of that area as possible, usually by pointing them outwards or by reducing intensity. 2. Diffusers change the beam shape and widen the beam's coverage. Knowing this, adjust your strobes according to #1. One more important fact to understand: light output from your strobe is most intense at the strobe (all that light is packed into a few inches of strobe tube surface) and dissipates very quickly as it travels through the water column to your subject (several meters wide for WA). The reason some people say diffusers help is because they reduce the intensity of the light, but that's only half the equation (forgetting about position). The reason some people say (or experience) diffusers are worse is because of the diffuser pushing more light LOCALLY close to the strobe. If the strobe is close to that water column, all that intense light will light up backscatter. The solution for WA? Pull your strobes several inches behind your housing. This gives the light some distance to lose some localized intensity and not intensely light up those backscatter particles. Works wonders in 3m-6m visibility. Oh, feel free to use that diffuser, because that's what'll get you smooth lighting for WA.
  2. Assuming that flash sync speed is sufficient, fast focus and low shutter lag above all else for macro. Given narrow depth of field and constant movement, the ability to focus and immediately take a picture exactly when you want it is king. All the pixels in the world won't do you any good if the subject is out of focus to begin with.
  3. Probably a spring strength issue. It won't really be noticeable by pressing each button and trying to feel for the resistance. What's likely happening is one button is getting held down by the pressure, which locks out your other buttons. So, press and hold one button, then try the buttons that don't work to try and reproduce the problem you experience at depth. Do this until you find the button that reproduces this behavior. You can then replace the corresponding problem housing button/spring.
  4. I've used the vinyl Atlas 660 gloves for years because I happened to have them in the house. They're particularly nice if you turn them inside out, as the inner liner gives you a little bit of extra grip and abrasion resistance. That said, I've switched over to using elastic latex/nitrile gloves and will never look back. Find a glove that offers a snug fit over your liner and marvel in the finger dexterity.
  5. Are you asking about the glove system or the glove itself? Systems each have their pros and cons, mainly around cost, ease of donning the glove, and risk of failure/flood. Personally, I prefer a simple pull over system as opposed to a twist/lock system. You can even create an incredibly simple and cheap DIY pull over system. As for the glove itself, the trade off is between a thicker glove that has more cut resistance and a softer, thinner glove for more finger dexterity. Non-elastic gloves (like some heavy-duty gloves) are more resistant to puncture, but they can become incredibly difficult to use as the cold reduces your finger strength. Thinner, softer gloves give your fingers a bit more purchase, as you'll be able to use more of your finger tips to grab something like a soft lens cover. That said, I don't think operating the camera will pose any issues with any choice. The real struggle comes at the end of the dive when you try to unclip your camera, store your accessories, or put a lens cover back on. Gloves are cheap. Buy a few different pairs and see what you like. You can always use the pairs you don't like for household cleaning.
  6. Some techniques/tips: * Start from farther away so you have a larger sight picture through the viewfinder. Focus, locate your subject, then move in closer and refocus as necessary. * Take a mental picture of the features around the subject so you know where your subject is relative to whatever you might see. * If you hand-hold your light, use a wide-beam focus (video) light, so you don't need to fidget with your light to get the beam on the subject. * Once you have focus established on one subject, take a mental note and start with that distance with your other subjects. * Superb buoyancy and fine fin control are key. If you practice anything, practice this! I shoot a 5D mk2 and use only the center focus point. Personally I wouldn't bother with topside practice with the housing. It's just too cumbersome, and you're not replicating the conditions/environment underwater.
  7. So the lens can be feasibly installed or removed while underwater?
  8. I have a "legacy" (the big one) aquatica macro port and would like to try shooting some supermacro. Would love to hear some recommendations or experiences from those who do the same. I currently shoot macro with Canon 100mm 2.8 L lens with a 5D mk2. It does not look like Aquatica has a flippable system for the older, larger macro port. Instead, there's an adapter plate that is held onto the macro port's rim by 3 screws. Has anyone tried installing/removing this or the close up lenses underwater? Is it feasible? If not, it seems I would be better off simply installing a dry CU lens directly onto the main lens. Otherwise, I'm not ready to shell out $1100 for the mini-macro port + flippable mount + lenses, as I'm not sure how much I'll like shooting supermacro. What's your recommendations on shooting supermacro with a legacy Aquatica port?
  9. Thoughts on the pic below? It feels lacking in contrast and has an odd composition in that there's quite a bit of empty space. On the other hand, perhaps that adds to the atmosphere of the pic? I've played with cropping and adjusting the contrast, but have been dissatisfied with the directions I've tried. As is, I think it has a bit of that fantasy 'floating around wreckage in space' feel. The pic is a little unsettling to me, perhaps amplified by the imperfections? What would you do to this pic? This pic was taken last week in Nanaimo, BC, Canada. It's the HMCS Cape Breton. We had about 40ft of vis on this particular dive.
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