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Everything posted by JohnnyQuest

  1. No offense, but there isn’t really anything you can do to make that a good shot. You’re looking down on the subject, which is one of the first things not to do. And you’re way too far away. If you don’t want all that background, why is it in your frame? How many shots did you take of it? Nudis obviously don’t move fast, so you should have had time to try many different compositions and camera/strobe settings. I highly recommend Mustard’s Underwater Photographer’s Masterclass book. He talks a lot about composition and set up for nearly every type of shot. His book helped me tremendously with composition. If you want great shots, you’ll need to start with shots that look pretty darn good on the LCD screen when you’re still underwater. I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but I consider your shot unusable, unfortunately. My advice is to work on technique. You can practice above water too. Go to a garden with your macro lens and play. Or, better yet, practice inside in a poorly lit room and try to get great illumination on small objects with your above water flash. Search on line for shots that you really like and try to capture similarly composed and exposed shots. I’ve spent hours laying on the bottom of a pool shooting thousands of frames of toy plastic sea creatures trying all different techniques. Do Google searches for nudibranch images. When you find images that you really like, go to a pool with a small plastic fish and practice.
  2. I think Pacific Housing Repair is great. I've been shooting YS-D1s since 2013. I've had PHR do 3 repairs over the years (Including the one he's currently working on - flash tube). I keep thinking that I'm going to upgrade to newer strobes, but Devon is still able to fix them for a pretty reasonable price (Far less than I could buy a used one for). He pressure tests the strobes before returning them, and he's an authorized S&S repair shop so he checks them against factory specs before returning them. He's quite knowledgeable. He usually asks a few question and asks me to maybe do a simple test, and he's been very good at immediately knowing what the problem is and if he thinks it will be economically feasible to fix it. But expect it to take 2-3 months. I have and travel with 3 strobes so if one needs repair, I still have 2. https://www.pacifichousingrepair.com/ P.S. If you decide to upgrade, I might be interested in buying yours.
  3. I guess it depends on how critical you are and what you will do with your photos. I shot these with my Canon 5Dmk4 and the 8-15 with a 140mm dome. F-stops were 9, 6.3, 10, 7.1 (in that order). The corners are sharp enough for me. The visibility was about 40' for the Palau Jake Plane and only about 25' for the Galapagos hammerhead, so the shots aren't great, but ok based on the conditions. I used a Tenko 1.4 TC for the Galapagos shot.
  4. I'm selling two of these (one black and one white). Both work perfectly. Black one has 210 dives; blue one has 193 dives. $125 each includes economy shipping to the contiguous US.
  5. Thanks. Always wish I could have done better. There's always a next time!
  6. When I was there, the dive masters really limited the time we could be in the water. The crocs were getting too close and too "friendly." They started yelling at me to get out. One approached me but at a really bad (photographically) angle. I was looking right into the sun and couldn't even see the rear screen on my camera through the glare. So I put the settings on what I though I needed, and started shooting. I used a Tokina 10-17 (at 10mm) with a mini dome. These are my best shots (not great). I asked the captain if we could go back a couple of days later, but he said that the itinerary was set by the government. For the closest shot (ironically, when I was shooting blind from the hip), my dome was probably a foot from the croc's nose. Yeah, they get close. The viz was only about 10 - 15' as I recall so a longer lens won't help. I don't think I was in the water with them for more than 10 minutes. It's done on snorkel.
  7. http://www.pacifichousingrepair.com/ They are the only authorized S&S repair center in the US. I had very good luck with them.
  8. I've had two YSD1s for about 5 years. They were very reliable until a flash tube blew in one of them on my last trip. (I estimate the I had > 20,000 fires on it so I can't complain) It failed exactly as you described. It seemed to lose power at first. Then it would sometimes fire and sometimes not. And even when it was completely dead, it would still return the "All ok green light". When I looked at the face, I could see that the tube was visibly cracked. I sent it to Pacific Housing Repair. Upon inspection, they discovered that the circuitry was fried too and said it wasn't worth fixing. However, they sold me a reconditioned one for a very reasonable cost. I'd give them a try. They are the official S&S service center in the US. Bluewater Photo recommended that I send my failed unit to them. BTW, a trick I learned from PHR is that a Sony remote (from a TV, CD player, Receiver, etc) will trigger the S&S strobes. If you just open the optical port and shoot the Sony remote into it, it will trigger if it's working. It's an easy test. http://www.pacifichousingrepair.com/
  9. Yeah, same for Canon. At least for my 5D mk4. I didn't see any difference.
  10. Bump. This is still for sale if anyone is interested. $100 and free shipping to anywhere in the contiguous US.
  11. My old system was a Canon 7D, and I used the 60mm macro. My new system is a 5Dmk4 with the 100mm for macro. I find no difference in ability to find or focus on my subject (easy on both). I use(d) a 180 degree view finder on both. However, I find that Al Servo works best with the 5D when shooting macro. I never use a focus light and have never though I needed one.
  12. I shot these with the Canon 8-15 and Kenko 1.4 TC behind a 140mm Nauticam mini dome. Frankly, it's really hard to tell the difference in quality between that set up and just the 8-15 alone (I know that's hard to believe). I shot all these in the Marquesas where the viz was between 10' and 25' so these are quite a bit softer than they would be in good viz. I used two S&S YS-D1 strobes and a 5Dmv body.
  13. I have this: https://uwtechnics.com/index.php/online-store/ttl-converters/for-canon/ttl-converter-for-canon-for-nauticam-housings-detail Designed by Pavel who is very active here (and is a great source of information). It works great with my 5D mk4 and my S&S YS-D1 strobes. I believe that Turtle also has a unit available now too, but you don't get Pavel's invaluable help with the Turtle.
  14. Thank. I PMed you back but I didn't see how to post photos there so I put them here:
  15. Great shape. No scratches on glass. No dings in the body. Includes the end cap, the glass boot, and original box as shown. PM me if interested. I'll make you a good deal.
  16. Brand new, in box, never used, optical flash trigger for Canon for sale. Item 26301. Includes two new batteries. Here's the link to it on the Nauticam site. Check compatibility with your system. https://www.nauticam.com/pages/search-results?q=26301 If you're interested, PM me. I'll make you a very good deal (and send photos if you want).
  17. Nauticam makes an optical trigger that sits on the hotshot and just fires the flash straight ahead. Since it doesn't have little LEDs that connect right to the optical bulkheads, you need to use the prism to redirect that straight ahead light, upward. The prism reflects the light up into the bulkheads. If you use a trigger that has the little LEDS you need to remove the prism and put the LEDs directly into the bulkheads. I have a Nauticam housing, but I'm using the UWTechnics TTL trigger so I removed the prism. If you download the user's manual here, it will tell you about removing the prism http://uwtechnics.com/index.php/online-store/ttl-converters/for-canon/ttl-converter-for-canon-for-nauticam-housings-detail
  18. Because the Canon is more expensive!! I read a couple of reviews between the two that say that the Canon is a bit sharper. That may be imaginary, and even if so, it's probably negligible. Actually, since I plan on using it with the 1.4TC, the zoom function of the Canon should come in handy. That's really the only reason. Plus I found my 8-15 used for about the price of the 15 new.
  19. At any focal length < 14mm, you'll start to see black at the corners. You could shoot there, but you'd have to crop the shot afterwards. This link shows how the image will look at various focal lengths: https://www.the-digital-picture.com/Comparisons/Canon-EF-8-15mm-f-4-L-USM-Fisheye-Lens.aspx I believe that with the 1.4TC, you will have a useful range of about 15 - 21 before you'd see the black corners.
  20. I went through the exact same thing. I upgraded from the 7D with the Tokina 10-17 to the 5Dm4. I agonized over it for a long time and made myself (and others) crazy. I eventually sold the 10-17 and bought the Canon 8-15. I also went with the Nauticam 140mm dome. After reading Alex Mustard's article, I decided that 100mm would be a bit small. My concern was also that I didn't want to give up the CFWA. I just returned from my first trip with the new system, and the new port/lens will still focus with the subject touching the port. I think it's a great combination. The only downside, is that there really isn't any zoom with the 8-15; it's just a 15. You can shoot full circle at 8, but it's either that or 15. Ok, the other downside is that I had to spend a lot of money and then justify it to my wife! I kept my Kenko 1.4TC but haven't yet tried it underwater. I've played with the above water, and it seems to focus quickly and give sharp results with the 8-15 above water. I'm going to get the necessary extension ring and zoom gear so I can use the TC on my next trip, which will be a big animal trip. I hope that helps.
  21. Thanks! But after looking at those photos I was embarrassed and followed my original plan with the SS hardware. Much better. I found little nylon finish washers that fit perfectly.
  22. I like my ULCS arms, but I agree that the clamps can be a bit tough to fully tighten or loosen. I made these handles quickly as a prototype (out of scrap Azek), but they work so well that I haven't improved them yet. I was planning on connecting them via SS screws in lieu of the zip ties, but I've used these for about 100 dives, and I kind of like them. I'm a Canon shooter so I don't mind the white. Nikon shooters will probably prefer black.
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