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Posts posted by rramaley

  1. Since this is where I was pointed to express condolences, I will express to all family and friends of John that my prayers and thoughts are with them.


    (As a side note I would encourage the moderator to keep condolences and wishes separate from people seeking to comment on the circumstances of the event and the press's handling of the events) - not a good mix.....

  2. For every videographer and photographer out there.... you might have footage of an unexpected new species!!! I almost didn't ask about this one but it made the day of Mark McGrouther at the Australian Museum...... They didn't know it existed until the early 2000's and it took them another 10 years to figure out what colour it was live!




  3. For every videographer and photographer out there.... you might have footage of an unexpected new species!!! I almost didn't ask about this one but it made the day of Mark McGrouther at the Australian Museum...... They didn't know it existed until the early 2000's and it took them another 10 years to figure out what colour it was live!





  4. Here's a little compilation of footage shot on a recent trip to Belize. Shot with a 5dmk3 in a Nauticam housing. Canon 16-35 lens. All natural light - though it would have been nice to have had lights for the whale shark - but they were not permitted :( . Being relatively new with this camera and DSLRs in general, I am quite happy with the results. The premiere pro editing software was great as well as the After Effects add on I used to stabilise the shots - one or two shots have a bit of waviness as the motion was too much for the software to handle - like when I bonked a coral with my dome - oops (objects in the viewfinder are closer than they appear). I did see the softness in the edges with the 16-35mm lens but generally good sharp shots with good depth of field.


    I bought this camera for low light performance and I have not been disappointed... The white balance capability was also quite impressive (particularly after struggling at times with my Sony 550 HDR video cam....)


    Footage is from dive sites at Glovers Reef, Lighthouse Reef and of course Gladden Spit for the whale sharks. We dove and stayed with Hamanasi - a very good operation.


  5. Hi Muriel,


    I spoke with L&M, they say they are able to provide all spare parts for this model and expect to be able to continue to do so "for a while longer" (~2-3 years?)


    L&M will do a servicing of handles for US$75 each and the full camera for $500. It has to be done in the US (no service centre in Australia) so if you want that, we can negotiate it within the sales price and I could mail the camera to you via the US for a servicing. It is up to you.


    After looking at things, the buttons on the handle are a bit difficult to access - L&M says you could it yourself if you wanted to but it is a bit tricky. I'm soaking the handle now so I think it really won't be necessary to do (was only the "W" button).


    The batteries (there are 2 in each handle) are quite easy to replace in the handles - you just unscrew the cover with the allen key and the batteries are right inside. And no, I do not have a faulty circuit board.

  6. Hi MH,


    1. There is a tool that comes with the camera to loosen the handle threads and remove the handles from the housing. The handle cover itself can then be disassembled with an allen key. The buttons are found behind the circuit board but you have to be careful as the board is held in place not only by 3 screws but also two pins that then have to rethread through the circuit board when you reassemble. You can then remove the rings holding the buttons in place to clean them. I've just opened the handle to have a look and the button set up is slightly different from my other L&M housing I had previously so I'm asking my dealer about how to properly remove and clean these buttons.

    2. The footage is downloaded via USB cable (I'm providing the cable with the camera)

    3. My understanding is that I can contact my (or any L&M) dealer to provide spare parts. I would imagine that after a number of years, they might stop carrying certain parts, but this camera is not that old and likely shares common parts with housings that are currently in production - so the important parts like orings and handle batteries shouldn't be an issue. To be sure, I have contacted my dealer to see what he says so I will get back to you on this.




  7. Sorry correction it is an HDR 550 XR


    For sale: US$3000 or best offer. Gear located in Sydney, Australia. Happy to ship worldwide but freight will be added to final agreed price.


    • Light and Motion Bluefin Pro housing: includes 3.2 OLED monitor, external manual control knob (can be programmed for focus, aperture, exposure, etc), one touch white balance, internal flip colour correction filter, flat port
    • Sony HDR550 XR camera (Australian plug) with original box and accessories (with 240GB hard drive)
    • Spare extended life battery for camera (NP-FV100)
    • Fathom 90 lens
    • Flip macro diopter
    • Light and motion housing float
    • Housing tripod mount (tripod itself not included)
    • Monitor shade
    • 2x Sola 1200 video lights (US charge plug)
    • Hand strap for sola light (if you want to make it a dive light)
    • 2x Locline arms
    • 2x large foam floats for arms
    • Spare parts: orings for housing, replacement handle threads
    • Various tools needed for camera (allen keys, tool for removing / tightening handle threads)


    Purchased approximately 3 years ago, the camera housing from Scubapix in Australia, the lights from Backscatter in the US. Total purchase price of all gear was US $10,000. I haven't used the camera for about 6 months as I have been using my new 5dmkIII but have confirmed all is in working order.


    Condition of kit: normal wear and tear, continues to take excellent video. Anything that is in less than very good condition is as follows:

    • buttons on the handles are slightly sticky (e.g. zoom buttons) but that is easily remedied by a good soak or if you want you can disassemble the handles and do a proper clean.
    • the wet / dry microphone does not work but I presume it could be repaired at a L&M service centre if it is important to you (I never needed it...).
    • acrylic on back monitor is slightly scratched in a few places but it doesn't impact ability to see what you are filming and it is barely noticeable underwater.
    • Fathom 90 lens has a minuscule ding which can probably be rubbed out by toothpaste if you give it enough elbow grease, but since it didn't impact my footage at all, I have not spent a lot of time trying to do that.
    • The plastic bodies of the charging plugs for the solas have cracked (really thin plastic!) and have been glued or taped - they still work fine but if you want pristine plugs or Australian instead of US version, I'm sure you can get from a Light and Motion Sola dealer.

    Attached photos should give an indication of scratches, dings, wear and tear...


    Below are links to a number of videos I created using this camera. It is a very good camera for both wide angle and macro, great colours and crisp focus. At significant depth the white balance gets a bit finicky and the low light performance is not stellar but that's where the video lights come in...











  8. This is great stuff! I am going to Hawaii with friends in May, and I think we've got a couple black water dives planned. I've got a similar setup to yours, therefore I am curious about your settings. -Did you MWB on a slate at the beginning of the dive? -What optics did you use? It doesn't look very wide... But I am not sure I have a good sense of scale in each shot! -Did you set the focus once and for all, or did you try to vary during the dive? -You are saying that the Sola were insufficient. Do you mean in terms of lumens? Or battery life? I would have thought that for relatively close subjects, the dive would have been similar to a regular reef night dive and thus the Sola would have been a tad bright... -And finally, how deep were you diving? Of course you don't have to answer all questions... There is much to learn just from your footage. Did I say it already? Great stuff!

    It's a bit embarrassing but I can't remember what I did with my white balance - I think I had it on auto - recommend just taking a white slate or something, filming it at the start, and using that to adjust in post production. White balance wasn't as critical as the light / focus (had this on auto as well) / iris. I used the flat port lens that comes with the Bluefin Pro housing - I knew the critters were going to mainly be small..... I was told by the dive guide to give the critters a lot of light and to manually adjust the iris to control the amount of light the camera picked up. That being said, I know I still had hot spots on a number of the critters. Needed more dives to get it right. The 2 Sola 1200's were insufficient in terms of getting enough light to come at slightly different angles to light up the critters and prevent a narrow light band. I had the lights placed basically up against the lens angled out to give ~ 4 inches of darkness in front of the lens (important because of backscatter and the little white worms that love the light). So the critters were filmed about 6-7 inches in front of the lens and had another ~6 inches or so before they went outside the beams. Battery life was fine. My lights were on medium most of the dive and they lasted the full 75 minutes (whew, I was worried at first). As for depth, we were anywhere between 15 and 45 feet, most of it was at ~ 30-35 feet....

  9. So we ended up going with Jack's Diving Locker. Was a pretty amazing experience - we went on their scheduled night and it was just the 2 of us on the boat, and chartered the boat for a second night (again just us 2) - if you can wing it that you are the only ones on the boat, it is a very special experience. The dive guides were in the water but for them it was a pleasure dive since they didn't have to worry about us. Each dive was ~75 minutes and some fantastic things floated by. Matt D'Avella (JDL's resident expert) takes a bit of warming up to (and likewise him to us) but we had a good time diving with him. He'll also give you good tips if you listen....


    Here's a video I pulled together of my footage - pretty happy with the results though I wish I had a week of consecutive diving to work the kinks out. One big recommendation: bring a sh*% load of light - Matt the dive guide had 5 lights on his rig!!! My 2 Sola 1200s were woefully inadequate.



    • Like 1

  10. Here's a little compilation of the footage I took on the 2 night dives we did in February in Kona with Jack's Diving Locker. It was an amazing experience: apart from the guides, my husband and I were the only 2 divers and some pretty amazing things floated by. The biggest challenges were keeping the critters in frame, keeping them in my 2 beams of light from my Sola's (Matt, the dive guide, used 5 lights!!!!), keeping things steady, and getting the aperture right. Lots of things to consider. I think if I'd had a week, I'd have come away with some award winning stuff ;) , but alas, 2 night dives of 75 minutes each was all we had.


    Song is "You're So Cool" by Hans Zimmer feature in the movie "True Romance". Filmed on my Sony HDR 550 with 2 Sola 1200 lights (painfully inadequate!!!)


    Hope you enjoy.




  11. I am pretty sure that you can find it inside the menu. I don't have a 5D MK3 but it is the case for 6D.


    Thanks - found the menu steps to change to NTSC though I have read on another webforum that despite having ability to change in the menu options, it doesn't do anything in actuality. Hmm, that sounds dodgy. Will do a bit of digging to see if I can confirm this....


    Think Tank Airport International 2.0 on the way - I recognise that this is a step up from the Think Tank Airport Accelerator and means domestic travel will likely entail checking in vs. carry-on (which has a level of risk). I have a bum shoulder so wheels for me are key and with the stupid rules of only 7 kilos on a lot of the Aussie carriers, I need something that will hold up if checked in. I'll let you know how this purchase goes.


    I'm doing my editing with the Adobe suite of products on a new Macbook pro (yeah, I know, Adobe on a Mac? But wasn't overwhelmed with what I was hearing about the newest FCP and I like the pay-as-you-go model that Adobe has on their full product suite as I still learn...) If anyone has a view as to whether IPB is better than All-I with that set up, let me know (or please help me find the thread talking about this). Otherwise I will again do some digging and come back to this thread with any findings.


    As for housings, I've got the Nauticam in my sights. However I'm not totally certain yet as my husband has a Hugyfot for his Nikon D700 with some pretty nifty features (vacuum system for sealing and monitoring the camera's seal, really tightly tailored to camera meaning no unnecessary space, well designed controls, etc). I have no clue how they do with video (eg can they accommodate an external monitor, etc) so if anyone has had experience with video in a Hugy, can you please weigh in or point me to a useful thread?.....


    Finally, it may be too detailed for this thread to go through each menu setting to get the camera set up right for underwater video. Tim, Drew, Jon, anyone else willing and able to have a side conversation?

  12. I use the ThinkTank Airport Accelerator and the Crumpler 8 million bag for most trips. I just got a new xmas gift bag, the GuraGear Battaflae, the 32 liter version. It's lighter than the Airport Accelerator and has a great rain shield. BUT it doesn't have a laptop area like the TTAA. Have to reconfigure to carry the 17" and all the gear.


    Thanks all for the tips.


    Drew - with your TTAA, do you get everything in that? The UW housing, body, lenses, lights, etc?


    By the way, the photo shop is trying to sell me a protective filter for the 16-35 lens I just bought. Is this necessary?


    Another quick questions: it looks like there's a few movie recording sizes that I can choose - is ALL-I or IPB better? And is the 50fps a better setting at only 720 or 25 fps at 1080, since it is clearly a trade off.

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