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JohnLiddiard

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JohnLiddiard last won the day on July 27

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About JohnLiddiard

  • Rank
    Triggerfish
  • Birthday 02/25/1960

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://www.jlunderwater.co.uk
  • ICQ
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Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Bristol
  • Interests
    Freelance photographer and journalist working mostly for Diver Magazine. Lots of UK wreck diving, but also like to travel and snap pretty marine life. Rebreathers.

Additional Info

  • Show Country Flag:
    United Kingdom
  • Camera Model & Brand
    Nikon D200
  • Camera Housing
    Subal
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Inon Z240
  • Industry Affiliation
    Freelance photographer

Recent Profile Visitors

3259 profile views
  1. > "We live in the "good-enough society", Phones are not locked in to just the software the manufacturer provides. They are part of a whole ecosystem of 3rd party just about good enough software. Don't like the way the something on your phone works - well browse the web and try a few 'maybe good enough' alternatives until you find one you like. Whilst I curse the poor quality of much of such software, and even more the bloatware that comes pre-installed with a new phone, the fact remains that I have a choice and eventually find something that, at least for me, suits better than the original. Its not just the phone hardware manufacturers that are pushing the whole ecosystem forward. Their software development is limited to a few proprietary drivers and configuring an operating system. But they benefit from many orders of magnitude 'free' (at least to the manufacturer) additional development work from a world of developers. The first big camera manufacturer to take the plunge and open up their platform to third party software could start an evolutionary rush of innovation (much of which will be barely good enough) that others will have to follow or get left behind. Rather than comparing the benefits of Nikon / Canon / Sony / Olympus, we will be comparing the benefits of what software we have installed. But by providing a route out of stagnation, would that also result in a further 'commoditization' of cameras and shake up of manufacturers? Will Sony and Nikon embrace android, while Apple partners with Canon for iEOS?
  2. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-37356-2 To be fair, when this paper was first referenced in the diving press, there were marine scientists who wrote to disagree with the results. Also, its flash/strobe, not video lights.
  3. I would have upgraded camera bodies more often if manufactures kept the body physically compatible. ie. I can continue to use this year's body in last year's housing. But even with the smallest minor version upgrade they insist on moving a button a few mm and thus a camera body upgrade dictates a housing body upgrade and hence the cost of upgrading is prohibitive. The last time I managed to do that was a Nikon F801 to an F801s! (I still have them sitting in box somewhere if anyone wants to make me an offer) Looking at it naively and simplistically, if manufacturers committed to a standard physical body across several models and just fitted different electronics into it, they could put the cash saved on tooling into the electronics and get more sales from us underwater photographers. But then we have been saying that forever and no manufacturer has listened to us. That is all at a bit of a tangent. As per the original premise, I agree that once you have a camera that can see better than you can, focus faster than you can, and takes pictures technically good enough for what you want to do with them, why should you ever need more? The product becomes a commodity and has to compete on price and convenience rather than technical excellence.
  4. I used to use Sea & Sea strobes because they were cheap and easily available. A false economy because frequency of failure and consequent cost of repair accumulated annually. I moved to Inon strobes and in 15 years they have never failed. The only disadvantage is you need a phd in Inon to work out how to drive them. I would hope Sea & Sea electronics have improved since. Nevertheless, the design of the battery contacts and the lever micro switches inside appears to be the same or similar, so perhaps those failure points remain.
  5. When travelling with my current M4/3 rig, I only need a carry-on and one 20kg bag in the hold. When travelling with my old DSLR rig, I always needed an extra 10-15kg bag in the hold. Depending on route and airline, that can be a big saving on every trip. The lighter rig is also much more convenient to carry about on location and to dive with. Images may not be as high resolution as a full frame DSLR, but they are good enough for a double spread in magazines or for a poster sized print on the wall. I don't need any more. By coincidence, my Mrs has a TG5 and video ring light.
  6. What I would find interesting in a lens size comparison would be pairs of images of the same lens at either end of the zoom range, or wherever most/least extension is for zoom & focus. Many zoom lenses that at first appear interesting turn out to be completely impractical simply because a port to accommodate the extremes of extension would be impractical.
  7. Adding to the advice of previous replies, it also depends on the level of diving. You need to be completely comfortable and 'automatic' at any level of diving before you start complicating it with a camera. You will reach that point sooner for 5m dives in warm water and good visibility than for deep dives in cold water and poor visibility. Once you start photography, there will be dives where you can develop your photographic skills, there will be dives where you can develop your diving skills - but not both at the same time.
  8. Always on the strobe arm. Its so much more convenient. My dive computer is secured to the strobe arm and the camera is secured to me. No more or less likely to get lost than if it was on my wrist. Convenient in the water and quick to kit up. But - I would keep it on my wrist if it was air integrated with a through water transmitter. In the past I had an Aladin AirX O2 connected to a rebreather and the through water transmit/receive often glitched when it was close to a firing strobe. The failure mode of that was way more troublesome than simply missing cylinder pressure.
  9. You may find it cheaper to book an underwater photography speciality course than a private guide. Then tell the 'instructor' to just skip the theory etc and model for you.
  10. I don't know the gear layout of your 24-70 lens, but in the past I have bodged a zoom gear by wrapping one side of sticky backed velcro round a lens to approximately the right thickness. It wasn't smooth to operate, but got me through a trip while waiting for the genuine gear to arrive. The 24-70 at 24 could be OK for sea lion portraits. Maybe not ideal, but sometimes you get interesting shots using the 'wrong' lens.
  11. A difference to bear in mind compared to the small housings you have already used is that an acrylic dome port will be considerably more vulnerable to scratching from accidental knocks and bumps, while the wide lens draws you in closer to potential bumps than what you are used to.
  12. One lens of the mask for close up, one for distance. Close the unwanted eye.
  13. Work it backwards. What use do you put the photos to: Print or web? What size? Do you crop a lot during editing? That should give an idea of minimum sensor pixels you actually need. Any pixel count more than that is money you are spending on a sensor that you could be spending on a lens, or money you are spending on excess baggage that you could be spending on beer.
  14. I have the Sigma not-VR available. Sigma 105mm macro 1:2.8 D.
  15. I ran a pair of Z240's through a Sea&Sea Y cable without any issues before moving to optical connections. (I have a couple of Y cables and a couple of direct cables available if anyone wants to make me an offer)
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