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Mike L

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Everything posted by Mike L

  1. I received my 7d about a week ago and have been playing with it extensively. Absolutely beauty. To me, it has a much better feel to it too than the 5d II. If all goes well, S&S will hopefully have a prototype housing at DEMA for the 7D!
  2. Nice shot!! I just got back a few weeks ago, I just love that place. Definitely a long ride out, so 3 days at the island is minimum...Id do the 5 days if possible.
  3. I got my hands on the new Canon 100mm 2.8L Macro IS lens today. What a beauty!! Popped it into both Sea & Sea and Hugyfot housings for the 5d Mark II with the same macro port as the older 100mm lens, and all fit and worked perfect! Cant wait to take this diving next week!
  4. Ive had several drysuits over the years. My favorite is my custom USIA suit. Every option you can imagine, very high quality, excellent service, 1/3 less than a custom DUI. I have both, and dive with my USIA. Had nothing but problems with the DUI zip seals and have heard much of the same.
  5. Simon: Our Lacie rep was just in here a couple of hours ago. The new 7200 RPM 500GB drive will be shipping this week! I say definitely go with 7200 RPM!
  6. I use Photomatix as well. I looked into a few other programs before, and also read two books on HDR, and that seemed to be the best all around software.
  7. Im heading to Guadalupe Sunday, wondering what water temps are like right now. Have you been there in the past few weeks??
  8. Very nice, just registered and will enjoy it.
  9. Hi All, Just wanted to share. The shoot I did in the Azores for Sperm Whales in the Azores is being aired tonight on the History Channel I just found out. Its on at 9 or 10 depending on your local listings. I hear they left out the best shots we had of animals, and put in crappy ones..oh well. Short shot of me, and then some of the underwater clips I shot. Someone oughta teach them editing is what I heard! Hope you enjoy.
  10. I hear you had a great trip Alex. Wish I coulda been there. Video looks great, I bet your happy you had the Superwide for that trip!
  11. Yes, I would highly suggest you check out which hole you are aligned with on the camera tray. There are 4 holes I believe, all with different alignment. I would suggest going through your owners manual and verifying you have the mount screws set up for the proper hole. We have set up SRay Plus housings with the Xr camcorders without any issues.
  12. Pat, after shooting with the HF S10 in the Bluefin C housing while sitting on the surface bobbing around to film whale sharks, I definitely agree that this new Image stabilization can be a HUGE improvement. When I was at NAB in April, I saw the XR 500 and 520 on a moving system simulating a bicycle and the footage was absolutely still....it was amazing!! Cant wait to test the S11
  13. You are correct on the 827 fitting for the Bluefin C.
  14. The express card slot is definitely NOTICEABLY faster. Perfect example with my 17" MBP, I download my the SDHC cards for my EX1 through the Express card adapter, and the 16GB card takes approximately 3-4 minutes to download all clips. When using USB 2.0, the same cards take 12-15 minutes. I wont even download the cards into my Mac Pro desktop, I do all the transfers to my external drive while its plugged into the MBP, then switch the drive to the Mac Pro for main editing.
  15. Very nice. I love that 5d2. I still cant believe I switched from Nikon for it (well at least temporarily). haha
  16. Thanks Drew, I was going to say wooowww!!! Very true with regards to overweight. I budget at least a few hundred for overage fees on any given trip. It still amazes me that we can not even get ONE free checked bag for domestic travel on most airlines, absolutely ridiculous!!
  17. It looks great, but I really want to know how you get that by on an airline as carry on. I have been using the Think Tank bags for my carry ons, and they are definitely smaller and lighter than that Lowe Pro...yet Ive had trouble with the Airport International V2 which only weights 13 lbs and is smaller in size as well. I had mine packed to 40-45lbs and been told by two airlines I could not carry it on. My Airport Acceleration V2 backpack weights 3.5 lbs, holds more than the carry on, and easily fits in any overhead. I can pack a full SLR system dual strobes, 2 camera bodies, and accessories in it, come in under 40LBS, and never get weighed because its on my back. I usually travel with both of those bags as my carry ons (SLR and video rigs)...but too many airlines are cracking down now and to risk having to have something checked in when its not packed for that sort of treatment, scares me!! On a recent trip to the Azores in June, we saw cargo crew throwing our Pelican cases and other luggage around when loading the plane. We got to the Azores and $5k Fathom port was in pieces!! So sending anything through that is not well packed for that sort of treatment is definitely not an option.
  18. Solmar is definitely a great way to go!! And Lawrence and the staff from Shark Diving International operate those charters and they are a heck of a group, you would have a blast!!
  19. Eric makes some very valid points there. Liveaboards especially have many crew members that we never see or deal with, those of whom play a significant role in the enjoyment of our trip. DMs and boat crew generally interact with us the most, so it might be nice to tip them a bit more personally, but its important to NEVER forget all the Behind the Scenes staff and crew that ensure the operations run smoothly. I can not fathom how well a liveaboard trip would go if the engineer failed to keep the boat operational. I always put my share in the tip jar, envelope etc....however I will say, being that I travel with several camera systems, I always make sure to give additional $$$ to those who personally help take care of the gear (carrying, rinsing, making sure they dont get banged around,etc) and they are always very grateful. I agree, many places have become accustomed to the tipping and when I feel its expected, I look down upon that...unless they really show they have earned it as well. Being Wetpixel members, we generally all have camera systems on trips, most worth well into the thousands...so when we show up in third world countries where the workers are making $1 an hour...or $5bucks a day, and we are each there with dive and camera gear worth 5, 10 or 50K, I always wonder what their thoughts are about us. Ill never forget my first trip to Fiji. Hearing the stories of how much the dive and resort staff made, how little their villages had, and the fact that I was there diving, had a rebreather, OC dive gear, SLR and a Video system I felt guilty. Then we learned that the staff did not even except the tips, rather the tip money went directly to the childrens' school fund in the local village, that made our group of 36 even more willing to tip! We host many group trips as well and have done so over the years. One thing I like is when we revisit places, we are always treated with utmost respect and the best treatment because these places have seen that our groups do reciprocate for excellent service. One of the reasons the employees are paid so poorly is because the owners know and understand most of the staff's income is made directly from tips and making sure the guests are treated well. The last thing any business or group wants is to be known for poor tipping, as that may very well end up with poor service from the get go...which although is not right, it is reality. One thing we always do with our group trips in the pamphlets and during pre-trip meetings is list a recommended budget for tips, based off of time, cost, etc...this way its known ahead of time that tips are not included, and so that customers can plan ahead to make sure they have the $$ to tip at the end of the trip. I have seen it too many times, where people fail to tip, or BARELY tip, even after having excellent service, because they fail to plan ahead, or they spend too much on themselves and are unable to. I am all for NOT tipping or tipping small when the service is poor...but I think that is a very rare instance nowadays in this industry. The SCUBA industry as a whole is known as a SERVICE industry, especially in the travel portion.
  20. for clarification, are you asking about what you are seeing through the viewfinder itself? The D300 is approx 98% of the image and the D700 is around 95%. I believe the D80 is closer to the 95% viewfinder coverage, and seeing more is not possible...if I am understanding your question directly.... Or, are you talking about on the LCD screen itself when you are reviewing the image or using LiveView.?
  21. I have spent some time with the Hugyfot and the Sea & Sea 5d2 housings, and Ive played with the Ike, just not underwater. The S&S is my favorite hands down. They are priced in the mid range of all the manufacturers. The housing is the smallest of the bunch, hVERY ergonomic controls, a great port selection...and as a shooter an retailed the S&S service and reliability is fantastic. Ports, accessories and spares are in stock nearly all the time (rare instances when they are not). The 110a s my favorite strobe, and shooting TTL is a breeze with the new S&S YS-C converter. The hugy is a great housing, priced about the same, but then bulkheads are extra, and it is a little more complicated to use and not as ergonomic. One thing I will say with regards to shooting video with ANY of these housings, is that there is one accessory that is definitely needed if anyone wants to make it a normal use to shoot video, THERE NEEDS TO BE AN EXTERNAL MOUNTED MONITOR. The 5d's LCD is great, but its not practical to use for many shooting scenarios, so if the convergence of Video and SLR cameras is here to stay, I believe an external monitor is a must! Here is a short link to a whale shark clip I shot with the 5d2 and S&S housing in Holbox two weeks ago. Again, being on the surface, in swell, using the VF was not very practical when I compared to to shooting with an external monitor on my EX1. Whale Shark with 5d2
  22. Very nice shots. I hope to do that dive one day. Ive heard about it and hear its an amazing experience.
  23. Very true, but even if they do not get them there, I have no problem..I carry my two 8GB sony cards with me as back ups in case I need to shoot that way. All I know is, $150 vs $750 each is MUCH better!!!
  24. These are great. Ive been using the cards from Hoodman (same as MxR) for about 3 months and absolutely love them. Sure saves a ton of $$$, especially when you want to have back up cards!! Personally, shooting with 2 16GB is way more than I need already, but the ability to have 32GB is sure nice.
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