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About cheetohcat

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Los Angeles
  • Interests
    scuba, travel, photography, health/nutrition/fitness, sewing, shooting

Additional Info

  • Show Country Flag:
    United States
  • Camera Model & Brand
    Canon s90
  • Camera Housing
    FIX s90
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Inon z-240
  • Accessories
    ULCS arms, BTS tray/handles, Sola 600 focus light
  • Industry Affiliation

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1877 profile views
  1. Got my 8 GB Lytro last week, and have been running around shooting random people/objects with it. Pretty cool technology, and it's been a lot of fun looking for opportunities to create more interesting photos with depth. The camera itself feels very solid and well made. I'm definitely curious what it could do underwater, thought it does require a lot of light. Lytro Sample photos
  2. shutter speed you can change via the wheel, and I switch to aperture by just pushing the down direction once on the wheel toggle, and then turn the wheel to adjust. For ISO, I programmed in the Right side of wheel soft key so that I could change it quickly if needed. Not sure about the rectilinear lens and the dome however. Hopefully someone else will pipe in on that!
  3. Thought I'd post a review of the Sony Nex-5n Recsea housing now that I've had it for a month or so, and gotten to dive with it several times. I've been getting a few PMs here and on another board about the set up, so I tried to cover off on any of the questions: First Impressions: I upgraded from my beloved Canon s90 to the Sony Nex 5n in the Recsea housing, dome port, 18-55mm port, 16mm port, and 67mm snap on wet lens adapter for the 18-55mm port. I was able to first see the housing in person and bought it up from Bluewater Photo near where I live in LA. For the camera system itself, I have the Nex 5n body with 18-55mm kit lens, 16mm WA pancake lens, and the fisheye WA adapter for the 16mm. The biggest overall benefit I've found thus far is that I am seeing significantly better picture quality, while my actual set up is virtually identical in size. It was important to me to keep the size compact since I do try do several dive trips a year and always bring my full camera set up. For reference, my original set up is the Canon s90 in FIX housing, BTS tray, ULCS arms/clamps, 2x Inon z240 strobes, sola 600 light. LEFT: Canon s90 FIX Housing with UWL-04 lens RIGHT: Sony Nex 5n Recsea Housing with dome port Build Quality: The housing just feels rock solid in terms of construction. I have never been a fan of the polycarbonate type housings (I had a few in the past for other cameras and I always ended up replacing them); I do believe you get what you pay for and I prefer the feel and security of the aluminum housing. Nice big fat o-rings securely seal the back cover and the interchangeable ports. Controls/Usability: All controls were clearly marked and the housing has full access to the Nex 5n control wheel and buttons, flash on/off & zoom. Using the camera IN the housing is virtually exactly the same user interface as when the camera is OUT of the housing. Controls were still easy to manipulate as I wanted to change shutter speed, aperture, iso, and focus points on the fly, even with 3 to 5mm gloves on. There was a lot more spacing between buttons etc which was nice to see vs. my s90 which has a rather cramped layout. Expansion Flexibility: I fully admit that the need to switch ports struck some fear and anxiety into my heart as someone use to sealing up my compact camera at home during prep, and then not touching it again until I either 1) needed to changed the battery or 2) I was safely back home again post diving. And lens changes? I used to gleefully swap back and forth with using the Dyron quick adapters on my s90 so I could go from UWA to stacked macro wet lenses in seconds. I am greatly relieved to say the Recsea alleviated my fears by being very user friendly, but very secure. Port changes were simple with a release button on the front of the housing and then you twist the port off. The ports feel very secure when attached, and I have not experienced any leaks nor seen any vignetting with any of the 3 ports. For lens changes I did of course have to give up the full flexibility of both WA and macro wet lenses, but that has more to do with changing from compact to a mirrorless compact system. The housing does allow to also easily change lenses at the same time you are changing the port (without removing the entire camera from the housing via the back door). There's a button on the bottom left of of the port opening that allows you to push the camera lens release button so you can simply remove and swap lenses when you are changing ports. Compatibility with existing parts: Because the housing is so compact, I easily mounted it to my existing same tray and arm set. There is a strobe mask that mounts on the exterior of the housing and blocks the internal flash. It has two pre-drilled holes that securely hold your strobe fiber optic cables. The top of the housing also has a 1/4" hole where you could add another mounting adapter of your choice or accessory. I also picked up the snap on adapter that fits onto the 18-55mm port and allows you to mount m67 type lenses & accessories. I am using it to hold my athena ring flash, or single or double stacked macro wet lenses that I carried over from my s90 set up. It's very convenient to be able to bring the wet lenses along and just pop them on/off depending on your subject. Sample Photos Note: I almost always shoot with manual camera settings and strobes, so any issues with exposure are mine. Wide Angle - just absolutely wonderful. The Nex-5n + 16mm pancake and Fisheye adapter inside the dome port offers such an incredibly wide angle of view. I believe it's pretty much a 180, and I can definitely see the difference vs. the UWA on the Canon s90 with reached approximately 150 degrees. I'm having to adjust my 'go to' positions for my strobes with the extra view. 16mm + fisheye in dome port - ambient light 16mm + fisheye in dome port - strobes 16mm + fisheye in dome port - strobes Macro - I haven't done as much macro shooting vs WA thus far with it, but my initial thoughts are the combo of the 18mm-55mm + 2x macro wet lenses are fine for the majority the shooting I do (I don't do super macro ...don't know how the heck those guys and gals spot those tiny things!) I am however hoping Sony or a 3rd party comes out with longer focal length macro lens later this year. 18-55mm lens with 2 stacked Inon UCL-165 macro lenses 18-55mm lens with 2 stacked Inon UCL-165 macro lenses Mid - the 18-55 mm lens is pretty useful as well. You do need to use a zoom gear on this lens, but I simply leave it on the lens at all times so I don't lose it, even if I am shooting topside with it. 18-55MM - strobes Video - I tend to prefer stills, but I know many of you have questions on this so I shot some video on a recent wreck dive. Will update this review later once I actually get around to editing it... Overall, I am really enjoying shooting with the Sony Nex 5n and Recsea housing system. For me it just feels like a great combination of capability, flexibility to grow, quality and price point.
  4. Hey rwe, I just recently upgraded to the Nex 5n in the Recsea housing + ports, and have a few sets of dives under my belt now with the set up. I really like the Recsea housing (I had their Canon s90 housing as well), and they are just rock solid in terms of construction. The housing plus camera is very compact, moreso than I expected which I like since it means I can keep the same tray/handle set up I was using before. I have the dome port for the 16mm WA+fisheye, and the 18-55MM port. Both have secure o-rings and lock firmly into place on the housing, yet can be swapped out when you change lenses fairly easily. The housing also has a screw on strobe mask with pre-drilled holes for fiber optic strobe cables. It also has full access to the Nex 5n control wheel and buttons, flash on/off & zoom (a must on my list), so using the camera in the housing is virtually exactly the same user interface as when the camera is out of the housing. Since the 30MM macro lens seems to have limited utility based on the reviews I read here, I've decided to wait to see if Sony or another manufacturer produces a macro lens with a longer focal length before I invest. In the meantime, I also the 67mm adapter that snaps onto the 18-55mm port so I can use my stacked macro wet lenses with it. I keep the lenses screwed into the adapter in a neoprene pouch on my BCD, so I can just quickly snap it on when diving with the 18-55 lens if I come across a good macro subject. All in all, I'm very happy with the camera and housing. Just looking forward to getting in more dives with it, and continuing to improve!
  5. Hey Nitro, I use two strobes. Didn't have them dialed in correctly for the first time out power-wise, but it was definitely necessary to have two to get coverage with the fisheye lens on the camera.
  6. I have one on pre-order and am scheduled for the Feb/March shipping window....we are supposedly going to be notified 1-2 weeks before it actually ships. Has there been any more news on UW housings for the Lytro? Haven't been able to find any new news...
  7. Hey bob, there's no viewfinder, but the LCD was easy enough to see in the housing. Since I'm coming from a compact, I'm used to screen only so I didn't have any problems with it.
  8. thanks Bill! that would be awesome! I think Dana said you guys were on the GS on the 26th but I can't join ...I'll plan on the LAUPS meeting next week.
  9. Hey Drew, I was shooting in manual mode for the camera and strobes, so any exposure issues are due to operator input. On a related note, do you have suggestions on how best to calibrate computer screens for accurate post processing? I just recently switched from PC to mac, and I find the images look radically different between the two, or vs. my work computer etc. Thanks!
  10. I had a chance to take the nex-5n out this Sunday for 2 dives on the Oil Rigs near Long Beach, CA. We lucked out and had AWESOME viz, so I could really put the set up through the paces for wide angle. I'm still getting used to it, but I am very happy with it so far! These were all taken with the Sony 16MM WA pancake lens + fisheye, and in the Recsea + dome port. I'm hoping to try out the 16mm alone, and the 18-55mm kit lens in the next few weeks as well.
  11. Stewart, I like "your wife's" set up. I'm sure she doesn't mind if you borrow it. Bill, sounds like I might need to get the 30 MM after all... Are you able to use a ring flash at all with the focus distance so short? I know I ran into that problem with my s90 and 2x Inon macro lenses where the focus was too close for the flash, so I'd just get a dark spot where the subject was (but the area around it was beautifully lit!) derway, the camera body + 18-55 lens is $699, 16MM $220, fisheye $120, so approx $1040. The 30MM lens is another~$250. Not sure how things are in your area, but I had a hard time finding any place with the camera in stock - seems to be backordered at all electronic and camera stores. I ended up snagging it all from Amazon finally, and extra batteries and a spare charger as well. The Recsea housing was similar to Nauticam at $1625 base - plus the ports based on your lenses. I am hoping to dive Saturday (assuming i can find an open boat) so I'll report back on how that goes.
  12. Thanks for all the great info everyone has been sharing here! So I took the plunge! Stopped by Bluewater here in LA to check out the options, and decided to get the Sony nex 5n with the kit lens, 16MM pancake and the fisheye. Still debating on if it's worth it to get the 30MM macro or wait a bit. I went for the Recsea housing and ports as well. The EPL 3 and Pan also seemed liked great cameras, but I preferred the Sony camera and housing combo best overall. I think my biggest surprise was that the camera + housing aren't that much larger than my S90 set up. I was worried about that in moving up from compacts, but here are some photos for reference with my tray etc so you can gauge relative size. I'm dying to get this into the water..I drove down to San Diego yesterday to dive the Yukon and Ruby E, but we were met with ~5ft viz, and had to call the 2nd dive! Majorly disappointing. Working on some dive time for this coming Saturday so I'll report back on how it goes.
  13. Thanks for the input Bill. I saw some of your sample photos on another post as well - great photos, and thank you for the thorough review of the 30MM Sony Nex 5n lens you posted. I think if I go with the nex 5n, I'd start with the 16MM and fisheye along with kit lens, and wait a bit to add a macro lens to see how things shake out. How are you liking the Nauticam housing? I was looking into that option or the new Recsea.
  14. Had a local buyer fall through on this ( ), so it's still available! Solid housing to get your E-PL1 underwater! I will include shipping to con-US in the price. For international, PM me and we can work out the best option.
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