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Everything posted by adamtaylor

  1. The 180mm dome is relatively buoyant, but the rig is much heavier than my Olympus EM5 which was slightly negative with 4 large stix floats. Mind you I experimented with this on the surface and there was a heavy lens of mixed river water. Will try at depth next time to see if it is better balanced in straight salt water I shot mostly stills with my EM5 so had a pair of YSD1 on a 10"+8" arm per side. Last year I got a pair of Archon video lights and added a triple clamp at the end of 10" which then split to two 8" arms (one with strobe, one with video light). Each 8" arm has 2 large stix floats. For my first dive with GH5 I kept the same set up, but skipped the strobes as I don't have a flash for the GH5 yet (and one strobe needs repair). It was negative, but didn't drop like a stone. I could let it go for a few seconds, and it would start to slowly sink. Macro setup will be much more negative, but likely workable. Will try and then consider adding more Stix or similar. Regards, Adam
  2. Thanks Stephen, Had read somewhere 1/60 was OK for 60fps but wondered as most simply double the frame rate. Recall seeing an article on shutter angle and so will do more research. Bottom line is the Nauticam housing was easy to use, even with dry gloves. Buttons and levers are all within easy reach and once I get used to them I am sure I can operate without having to look at them. Will continue to experiment with video until I get the panasonic flash listed by Nauticam (not sold in Canada) then shoot some stills which I am more familiar with. Love being able to white balance, my old EM5 on Auto WB created some pretty funky colour casts, especially with gloomy / murky water and video lights. Going to be a fun, if steep learning curve. But I have a good group dive buddies and many interesting sites & critters to practice with. Regards Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  3. For those interested I posted a couple links to footage from my first dive with GH5 under Editing, Post Production etc. http://wetpixel.com/...showtopic=60128 Constructive criticism would be welcome as I am new to Underwater Video Regards, Adam
  4. For those interested I posted a couple links to footage from my first dive with GH5 under Editing, Post Production etc. http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=60128 Constructive criticism would be welcome as I am new to Underwater Video Regards, Adam
  5. Hello all, On both the Mirrorless and Video Gear threads there has been much speculation and desire for information on how the GH5 performs underwater. I received my Nauticam Housing last week and got the camera in the water for a single dive on Sunday. I used my Olympus 12-40 f2.8 Pro lens in 180mm Nauticam glass dome which I used with my Olympus EM5 Full disclosure I am a rookie at video, and have even less experience editing. I have been shooting stills for 4.5 years and while I enjoyed the EM5 I found it a bit lacking lately with some of my deeper, darker dives doing conservation work on glass sponge reefs. Constructive criticism greatly appreciated. I am in the process of upgrading both my hard drives and computer system as my old laptop is out of space, and horsepower. Due to my current computer challenges videos linked below were shot 8 bit 1080p 60fps, and have been run through Windows Movie Maker which converted them to 30fps? (As stated, the technical side is currently beyond me) No colour grading, exposure or other shifts has been applied. You will note the white plumose anemones are washed out / burnt at times but I really wanted to get a feel for the camera, and judging results on a small camera screen is not that easy. There is some focus hunting, which I honestly think was me hitting AF lock lever trying to re-focus. Anyway, to keep things simple I shot 1/60, f8, Auto ISO, Manual White Balance and Single Autofocus. The white balance was remarkably easy, simply hit the thumb lever, then up button to activate viewfinder, point at something white (I used my dry glove, or a white anemone) and hit OK. Perhaps a grey slate would work better? I don't know, this was the first time I have ever performed manual white balance. Local water conditions can be challenging at times due to river run-off and plankton. This dive had pretty good conditions; decent visibility at depth with suspended particulate and a surprising amount of light considering the top 8 feet was river silt with 2 foot viz, and the next 10+ feet was plankton soup with 5ish foot viz. Here are a few miscellaneous shots where I tried different scenarios https://youtu.be/ydu2t-w1Vis Mother octopus grooming eggs (eggs start at 1:06) https://youtu.be/M7NrIMyTR4o Regards, Adam
  6. Had to use my old camera on Saturday dives as I didnt have a battery for Leak detection system. But Sunday's five went well. Need to upgrade my computer before editing 4K and will go through the 1080p 60fps footage in next couple days. Very impressed with ease of white balance for a rookie like me. 2 octo on eggs was an added bonus More comments later in week Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  7. Picked up my Nauticam GH5 housing yesterday and it appears very well constructed & sturdy. Have not taken it underwater but did try my existing lenses for fit issues; Olympus 12-40mm f2.8 Pro in the 180mm glass dome with extension etc appears to work fine. Olympus 60mm in Nauticam 77mm Macro port for 12-50mm also appears to work fine. The Olympus 12-50mm with Nauticam macro / zoom gear contraption I used with my EM-5 wont even properly connect to the camera. It will mount, but due to the teeth on the zoom gear and alignment of the 'cage' around the lens it doesn't seat well enough for the camera to even recognize it. Awaiting further input on the new components for this lens that work with GH5 (cost, availability etc...) FYI for Canadian purchasers. Panasonic Canada does not list the Panasonic flash specified on the Nauticam website. Unless things change it looks like we will have to order through USA. Looking forward to testing this weekend in the water. Regards Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  8. Personally I find the 12-40mm my preferred lens if conditions are reasonable for wide angle. And even when the top 20-30 feet are soupy and it dark down below it can still collect alot of light. Not super wide, but when you find a reasonably small critter you can zoom in to 40mm and get some close ups, or fish portraits. I find the 180mm dome a bit bulky, and it really changes the buouyancy characteristcis but if you like over-under shots it works well. That being said I would prefer something wider.... Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  9. Following as I am seriously considering GH-5 as an upgrade to my Olympus EM-5 Already have the Nauticam Macro Port for my 12-50mm & 60mm. Plus the 180mm glass dome for my 12-40f 2.8 Pro. Curious to see reviews and opinions on wider lenses such as comparing the Oly / Pana 7-14mm and a WWL set up. Also curious to see a comparison of the Oly / Pana 8mm fisheye Regards Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  10. Others may have input specific to your Nikon but with my Olympus EM5 I often struggle in murky, water which often is one step from plankton soup or mixed with river silt and glacial run-off. I started with a Sola 800 photo light as it can double for macro video. It has a red setting which doesn't scare most critters, amd I find my camera can focus with it even when my eyes cannot. Pardon the pun, but for extra flexibility I mounted it to the housing cold shoe using a loc-line arm. This allows me to get it up and above a smaller subject, but also twist it down alongside the flat port to light up critters hiding in cravasses. Having it higher than the camera also helps reduce backscatter on longer exposures. The light is many times less powerful than a strobe flash, so I don't think it has ever impacted the images (except really long exposures) If anything it can provide minor fill light for shadows etc. Lately I have been shooting a mix of still and video, so have a pair of Archon 2600 lumen video lights mounted on a 3-way clamp at then end of the first arm segment. I use one of them on low for focus and prefer the light from the side as it seems to produce less backscatter in turbid water. Good luck & happy diving Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  11. Shortly after getting my 2nd YSD1 I was having issues with imbalanced lighting. I kept adjusting the low lightung one upward to compensate then suddenly would have blown images. No rhyme or reason. Turns out I had unknowingly activated 'Slave' mode on one strobes by pushing and holding the focus light button while rinsing. It was firing slightly later than the other creating imbalanced lighting on short shutter speeds. This may not be the case with you, but check to confirm that both lights on back of strobes cycle the same after firing. I seem to recall one of mine cycled red, green, red. The other was red, blue, red. If this isnt the case then like the others suggested I would start swapping synch cords around to see if that is the issue. Good luck Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  12. Finally picked up my mail. The handle trays have arrived and are in great condition. Thanks Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  13. Perhaps further discussion on autofocus should move to Video section but as a mirrorless camera, and one I am considering for a mix if stills and video I want to see others opinions. Most of the reviews about autofocus have been for use in Video Blogs, which isnt relevant to my underwater shooting. If it turns out there are no consistent ways to achieve focus for underwater macro and wide angle then the camera isnt at all appealing. Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  14. @EspenB that changes things... Quite honestly I am curious to see how this issue impacts ones ability to shoot underwater. I don't use my camera as much on land. May be a deal breaker but I will keep watching this page and others in hopes someone will get one underwater and provide comments / review. Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  15. I completely agree it is a different beast. The Oly 60mm is a great lens which can produce crisp results but it can be challenging. When conditions are less than ideal, or when a small subject is close enough to other things to confuse auto focus my preferred still photo solution is as follows; 1) Pick an easy nearby target in same approximate focal plane. 2) Use a pre-set function button to first switch to Manual Focus 3) Use the other function button to magnify the target in the viewfinder. I find the Nauticam dials very useful to 'walk' the magnified area into the right location. At that point I use the focus knob or rock the camera to fine tune focus on the details I want. Now for video??? That is the question of the day. Mind you, I think I read somewhere that the GH5 provides the option to zoom in on specific areas of the screen while recording? Anyone know if this is possible? Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  16. Stephen, if you do keep it and get the GH5 underwater in the Northwest please post comments. My EM5 struggles with focus at times, especially with the 60mm in waters near Vancouver. Be interested to see how the GH5 compares. There is alot of fresh water mixing near the surface at many of my regular sites. So I imagine any camera will struggle focusing through changing water densities... It is a big financial commitment to purchase a GH5 and housing, even if my current lenses and ports are compatable. Seeing some real world results and reviews will be required before I make my decision. Thanks Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  17. There appears to be dozens of opinions on the autofocus. Hard to say if it is as bad as many say, or if there are setting changes that could improve things. This is probably the only positive one I have watched so far If anyone does get the GH5 housed and underwater I am very interested in how autofocus reacts in murky / silty water. Thanks in advance Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  18. Feeling no judgment or criticism from your comments. That is why I posted to see others thoughts and opinions. I am not rushing this, if it turns out that firing strobes is an issue then the GH5 may be removed from consideration. Waiting to see a few real world reviews. Ideally including low light performance, and autofocus in murky, plankton / sediment laden water.... Happy diving Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  19. Pehaps some people like me want to shoot both photos and video? Personally I holding off upgrading my EM5 mk1 until I see reviews of both EM1 mkii and GH5 While I currently shoot 80-90% stills video is becoming of more interest for the Marine Comservation projects I volunteer with. The still photo to video ratio would likely become more balanced, but I find the video capabilities of the EM5 somewhat lacking. Then again that may be due a combination of the user and the often murky environment of my local waters. It would appear that the EM1 mkii is the better choice for stills, but initial reviews indicate the GH5 is a capable stills camera. How this translates to underwater imaging, and the use of strobes remains to be seen. Regardless, until I read otherwise I will assume that with technological advances the GH5 would be a more capable stills camera than my current EM 5 mk1 So, if the real-world underwater reviews show the GH5 as greatly superior for video, and holding its own for photos then I will likely change from Olympus to Panasonic. All my current lenses and Nauticam Ports will work on either camera. Then again, with people upgrading their rigs perhaps I will spot a good deal on a used Sony A7Sii and completely change direction based soley on it's superior low-light performance for conservation work on Glass Sponge Reefs in my deep, dark & murky local waters... For now I have more questions than there are answers so will have to be patient. Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  20. Another thing to consider is that with all the great new camerw offerings people are selling their used gear. A used rig which may not be as good as the EM1mk 2 or D500 will likely be better your current compact. Watch the classifieds, some great deals, and some which are barely discounted (I often scratch my head at that) And if you strategically purchase good strobes / arms etc those can migrate to a newer rig if you feel you outgrow the used rig. Good luck, Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  21. I have a similar problem in the turbid waters around Vancouver. Plenty of mixing with river water, silts, glacial milking and plankton blooms... My EM5 mk i with 60mm is constantly searching and never achieving focus lock. Or as you say simply being stumped. I find myself avoiding shots over 18" / 45cm away. IF the lens tracks focus and I get the shot it's generally a milky, washed out image due to particulate etc. As a work-around to these focus issues I've tried using Single Auto Focus / Manual Focus setting. If you can't lock on your subject try locking on an easy nearby subject at a similar distance. Then switch to Manual and either dial, or rock the camera to achieve focus on your original target. BTW one of my Function presets is set to toggle to AF/MF Regards, Adam Sent from my SM-G903W using Tapatalk
  22. I had the same problem with my EM5 the last day of a 6 day live aboard trip in Channel Islands. Try cleaning the battery contacts on both the battery and inside camera. Regardless of how 'dry' I though my hands were during battery swaps some moisture caused minor corrosion / film to build up and interfere with the connection. One of my buddies used diluted vinegar on q-tips and scrubbed the contacts clean, dried them and it has worked fine for past year. Good luck Adam Taylor
  23. I will have to watch the video to comment on it's content, but have heard LOTS of chatter about it. From what I have heard the 'documentary' is very biased and some information has been used out of context. Perhaps someone with more knowledge of the specifics can comment? Having been involved in a number of Citizen Science and Marine Conservation initiatives with the Vancouver Aquarium I have nothing but respect for the individual researchers and the organization for it's efforts in those specific areas. Before tarring the whole organization with the same brush consider both the source of the video, and the other initiatives the Vancouver Aquarium is part of (science, conservation, education, marine mammal rescue / rehabilitation etc) I will reserve judgement on the whales in captivity part until I have time to watch the video. This issue, and discussing support of the organization should be relevant to the Underwater Photography Community as they have a number science initiatives that local underwater photographers can and do contribute towards. Off the top of my head these include; Rockfish Surveys, Annual Lingcod Egg Mass survey, Sea Star Wasting Syndrome, Glass Sponge Reefs etc. Input from their researchers and support from the organization has helped with numerous conservation issues over the years which are directly relevant to Scuba Divers and Underwater Photographers. Some of these include creation of Rockfish Conservation Areas, reintroduction of Black Rockfish to Howe Sound and Bottom Fishing Closures for Straight of Georgia Glass Sponge Reefs. Aquarium staff are working with other non-profit groups that I am involved with on two other glass sponge reef initiatives; 1) Proposed expansion of Halkett Bay Provincial Park to include glass sponge gardens and glass sponge reef (bioherm) all of which are within recreational scuba depths. 2) Expansion of Bottom Fishing Closures to include ALL known glass sponge reefs in Howe Sound (5 of which occur shallow enough for air diving which is unique in the world). Regards, Adam
  24. Hi Trwen, I thought I would chime in as the vast majority of my diving is done in similar murky waters. (Howe Sound next to Vancouver, British Columbia has significant levels of plankton and tidal influences from 4 river systems meaning that fresh water mixing and sediment is often heavy down to 40+ foot depth. Apparently the combined drainage area of these rivers is equivalent to the land mass of Great Britain) If your conditions are as bad as they sound you will be wanting as much light as possible, and for the price and flexibility the Sola 800 should be a good option. I use a Sola Photo 800 with my Olympus EM5, initially mounted to a single 10" arm on one side with a YS-D1 strobe mounted to same size arm on the other. On high power it worked as a decent 'fill' light from the opposite side. After purchasing a second strobe I went to double 8" arms and mounted the Sola 800 to the housing's cold shoe using a flexible loc-line arm. This allowed me to extend up over the subject for focus light and macro video, with the added bonus of twisting the arm down so the sola was alongside the port for use in lighting under boulders or into cracks. It's one thing to bounce your strobe light under a boulder, but completely another to have enough light to compose and focus on a small, skittish subject hiding in a dark crack. On high power I have also used it as a fill light for Close Focus Wide Angle, especially when subjects are close up to a wider dome which sometimes casts a shadow. Comments on your initial questions; 1) I have not had overexposure issues from the Sola, it really doesn't compete with the strobes unless they are manually dialed down to their lowest settings. 2) Red works well with skittish critters, and for my camera's autofocus.That being said the image on my LCD is so red that my eyes cannot adjust and fine-tune focus manually. Basically I cannot tell the difference between something which appears to be in focus, and something which is tack-sharp. With the Sola on white I can magnify 5-10X on my LCD and manually focus on the smallest details. On red I cannot even confirm focus beyond the shape of the subject. 3) Under normal circumstances I haven't really noticed any difference in photos when the light is on red. If I was experimenting with settings, a strobe didn't fire, or kelp floated between my subject and the strobe I would occasionally notice a change in colour tone, but those images were poorly lit and never keepers anyway. My one main complaint is battery life for multiple dives, especially in cold water. When used mostly on low setting (with occasional medium setting) it will last over a couple of long dives . On High it will be drained by the end of a single long dive. Based on 3 years experience with the Sola Photo 800 I would say it is useful for critter spotting, but not as good as a bright spot beam would be. Given the choice I would prefer a spot, or video light with spot capabilities for critter finding. I bring this up as in plankton-rich or sediment filled water the Sola 800 throws a wide beam which lights up ALL the particles in the water column. With the light mounted to the camera which is typically held out in front it ruins your ability to spot things at a distance, and lessens your ability to spot things beyond the edge of the lit area (think octopus hiding next to a boulder)... The broad beam also casts a much gentler shadow from well camouflaged subjects. In low viz, especially on night dives I often find myself holding the camera up over my head so the wide Sola beam is pointing diagonally down across my vision, instead of looking through all the sediment from behind the light itself. Please keep in mind I am making an apples and oranges comparison to my dives prior to carrying a camera. Previously I would use a halcyon canister light with intense spot beam that did not light up the entire water column. More importantly it provided significant contrast / shadows when pointed at a subject that was well camouflaged. It is too bulky and bright to use with my camera, but was an amazing critter spotting tool in murky waters. Given how little I now use It I should probably sell it and purchase spot capable video lights. Regards, Adam
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