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kstokell

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Everything posted by kstokell

  1. I've priced up my wish list to a total of about USD 8100 and the following is a breakdown of the approximate costs: $900 - EM5 mkII + internal strobe $2100 - Nuaticam housing (NAU-17809) + Tray, ball mounts, shutter trigger, and leak sensor $1470 - 2 x Sea & Sea YS-D2 Strobes + Arms, optical cables, etc. $400 - Olympus MSC ED M.Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 macro lens (for macro and portrait use) $300 - Nauticam port (36163) for 60mm macro lens $170 - Nauticam focus gear (36149) for 60mm macro lens $480 - CMC-1 macro converter with flip mount (for super macro) $500 - Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm f/4.0-5.6 (for general/wide angle use) $630 - Nuaticam 4 inch Wide Angle Port (36137) with zoom gear (36144) for 9-18mm lens $950 - Nauticam 45 Degree Viewfinder for MIL Housings $100 - Batteries and chargers for strobes, lanyard for housing Expensive business this underwater photography !
  2. It's a lot to buy in one go and that's why I'm trying to get it right. I've been using an RX100 with fisheye and macro wet lenses for three years now and have finally decided to upgrade. Unfortunately no cheap way to upgrade other than buy a whole new setup. You're correct the 7-14mm will not fit behind the 4.33 dome but the 9-18mm fits behind the 4 inch wide angle port (36137), so the list should read: - EM5 mkII + internal strobe - Nuaticam housing (NAU-17809) + Handles, shutter trigger, and leak sensor - 2 x Sea & Sea YS-D2 Strobes + Arms, optical cables, etc. - Olympus MSC ED M.Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 macro lens (for macro and portrait use) - Nauticam port (36163) for 60mm macro lens - Nauticam focus gear (36149) for 60mm macro lens - CMC-1 macro converter with flip mount (for super macro) - Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm f/4.0-5.6 (for general/wide angle use) - Nuaticam 4 inch Wide Angle Port (36137) for 9-18mm lens - Nauticam zoom gear(36144) for 9-18mm lens - Nauticam 45 Degree Viewfinder for MIL Housings - Batteries and chargers for strobes
  3. Again great feedback, I seem to have a lot of the gear nailed down, now I only need to sort out the wide angle/general purpose setup. I really don't want to go with the WWL, what I'm looking for is a compact widish (100 degree) zoom for general/widish use that fits behind a small dome (4 inch) or flat port. Anyone got any ideas?
  4. Thanks for all the quick feedback. So it seems for wide angle the 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO Lens is probably not the best choice. Currently I use a fisheye wet lens with a 130 degree angle of view which I actually find too wide, before that I used a Epoque DCL-20 which I believe had a 110 degree coverage which I found much more suitable for the type of pictures I like taking. Bearing this in mind perhaps the Olympus 9-18mm (supposedly 100 degree coverage) behind a 4 inch wide angle port would be my best option for general/wide angle use, does anyone have any experience with this combination? Also the Nauticam housing may be a better option due to the better port support, so my revised list now reads as follows: - EM5 mkII + internal strobe - Nuaticam housing (NAU-17809) + Handles, shutter trigger, and leak sensor - 2 x Sea & Sea YS-D2 Strobes + Arms, optical cables, etc. - Olympus MSC ED M.Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 macro lens (for macro and portrait use) - Nauticam port (36163) for 60mm macro lens - Nauticam focus gear (36149) for 60mm macro lens - CMC-1 macro converter with flip mount (for super macro) - Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm f/4.0-5.6 (for general/wide angle use) - Nuaticam 4.33 Dome Port (36132) for 7-14mm lens - Nauticam zoom gear(36144) for 7-14mm lens - Nauticam 45 Degree Viewfinder for MIL Housings - Batteries and chargers for strobes What do you think?
  5. So after a lot of thought and research here is my current choice still a couple of months to change my mind of course, what do you think? - EM5 mkII + internal strobe - Sea & Sea housing + Handles, shutter trigger, and leak sensor - 2 x Sea & Sea YS-D2 Strobes + Arms, optical cables, etc. - Olympus MSC ED M.Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 macro lens (for macro and portrait use) - Sea & Sea port for 60mm macro lens - CMC-1 macro converter with flip mount (for super macro) - Olympus M.Zuiko ED 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO Lens (for wide angle and general use) - Sea & Sea Port for 7-14mm lens ?????????? - Sea and Sea 1.2x 45 Degree Viewfinder - Batteries and chargers for strobes - Housing Lanyard - anything else I need ????????? Not sue what port I will need for the 7-14mm f/2.8 lens does anyone know, also unsure as to whether to go with the Sea & Sea or Nauticam housing?
  6. Thanks Griff, I'm not really to bothered about video I hardly ever shoot any at the moment, however that may change with a new camera. From what I've read is seems the PEN-F and GX8 may use the same Sony 20mp sensor but I've yet to see that confirmed. The GX8 is very tempting and is definitely on my short-list!
  7. From what I understand the Sony 90mm Macro lens has IS built in so IBIS in the A6300 is not really needed, my only concern about the A6300 90mm setup is the physical size. The PEN-F with either the 12-50mm (43mm macro) or 60mm macro would offer a much more compact setup, with a pixel advantage over the EM5 mk2. Just have to wait and see if there is a decent housing available for it at the end of April.
  8. It seems there are two new cameras I need to add to my list the Olympus PEN-F and the Sony A6300. I know the A6300 has a APS-C sensor, but it does look interesting, and teamed with the Sony 90mm Macro lens, should make a great macro shooting tool. Any opinions on these two new additions, and how do you think the PEN-F with 60mm would stack up against the A6300 with 90mm? Decisions, decisions thankfully I don't have to make up my mind until the end of April :-)!
  9. Thanks troporobo for the 12-50 vs 60mm comparison shots, seems to me that the 60mm is of course better but the 12-50 in 43mm macro mode is not bad. Can you tell me how the the maximum working distance from the end of the lens to the subject compares on these two lenses? Also I have a "Bluewater +7 Macro Lens", can this be used with both lenses and how will it affect magnification and maximum working distance? Thanks again, Kevin
  10. Thanks for all the feedback! For the camera I'm leaning towards the GX8 as it seems to have as good quality to the OM models and the extra pixel count gives a little more room for post shot cropping! With regards to lenses I'm a little less certain, ideally I would like to do fish portraits and macro work on the same dive, so the 12-50 lens with a flip diopter would seem best for that, however I'm worried the quality would fall far short of the dedicated 60mm lens, does anyone have any comparison experience between these choices? Also can the 60mm lens share the same Nuaticam port as the 12-50, if this was the case I could always get the 60mm at a later date if required? One last question, does anyone know what the widest angle lens is available for the micro 4/3 setup that sits behind a flat port, as I really don't want to use a dome? Currently I'm using a single YS-D1 strobe and an Ikellite Vega video light, but will probably add a second YS-D1 strobe when I upgrade. Thanks again for all the help so far!
  11. Hi All, after a lot of research and a great deal of help from a lot of people, many of them on this site, I have decided to upgrade from my RX100 rig to a new MFT setup. Now my challenge is which camera to invest in, and which lenses to start out with? Firstly I should say that my prime concern is macro photography (although the occasional wide shot is nice, not super wide) , and that I live in Curacao in the southern Caribbean so visibility and sunlight are usually in abundance? I have decided on a Nauticam housing and I've narrowed down the camera choices to the following (unless someone has a better idea): - OMD EM-1 - OMD EM-5 mk2 - GX8 - or wait for the replacement EM-1 (when will it be released, how long before a housing is available?) With regards to lenses I have been looking at the following options: - Olympus 12-50mm f3.5-6.3, with my current +7 diopter (plus maybe an adapter, or another diopter) - Olympus 12-50mm f3.5-6.3, and Olympus 60mm f/2.8 (I think these lenses can both fit in the Nauticam Macro Port 65, but not sure about zoom and focus control - Olympus 60mm f/2.8, and a wide angle lens (one that does not require a dome port) - any other suggestions? Lots of questions I know, but I hope you guys with all your experience can help me out? Thanks Kevin
  12. Is anyone taking macro shots using the "Photo Stacking" feature in the new version 4.0 firmware for the EM-1? If so what are the results like?
  13. I'm in exactly the same situation as you. I want to upgrade from my RX100 mk1 to either the OMD-E1 with 60mm lens or the A7R2 with 90mm lens. I'm leaning towards the A7R2 option, mainly due to the better quality sensor (noise, DR and light sensitivity), and megapixel count 42 vs 16, (which leaves a lot of room for post shot cropping). The only thing holding me back is the price which is almost double for the A7R2, and the real life difference in the quality/detail of the final pictures. I won't be buying until I visit the US in April, so perhaps the OMD-E1-II will be out by then and that may influence my decision! Below is a shot I took with my RX100 mk1 with +7 diopter, after more than three years with this camera it's about the best I can get regarding detail.
  14. Thanks again Phil, I'm pretty sure I know what I now want, all I need to do now is find the best prices. I'll be in Florida next March so will probably make the purchase then. Thanks again, Kevin
  15. Thanks Phil, I think I'm tilting towards the A7R2, a little bigger and more expensive but ultimately I think I'll have more fun with it. A couple of last questions if you have time to answer. 1. The A72 is significantly cheaper (about half the price) than the A7R2, have you tried it, how do you think it would compare for underwater macro use? 2. Have you tried putting a wet diopter on the Sony A7R2 for "super macro" and if so what strength and how much working distance did you loose? Thanks, Kevin
  16. Hi Phil, Thanks for your feedback. Currently as you say I'm not an "advanced underwater photographer" more an enthusiastic amateur, however as I'm now fully retired (until recently I used to work as a freelance DM), and will be spending the next three to four years based in Curacao in the Caribbean, I would like to reach that goal. I suppose my main worry is that if I upgrade to the E-M1/Nauticam with 60mm macro, it will not provide the jump in quality over my existing RX100 setup that I'm looking for, and that I will quickly reach it's limitations. How would you compare the the gap between the RX100 > E-M1 > A7R II especially for "macro" work? I'm more than willing, and have the time, to put in the required work to get the best possible shots with either system. Thanks Kevin.
  17. Hi Griff, Thanks for the feedback. I've seen a lot of good reviews of the E-M1 with the Olympus 60mm, but my concern is how much of a step up it would be from my RX100 with +7 Diopter. I've been shooting with the RX100 now since it was released nearly four years ago and think I have reached the point where I can't squeeze any more detail from the system this especially applies to very small objects. I have tried adding a second diopter for greater magnification but this reduces the working distance to virtually zero and is therefore not usable. Using my RX100 (one inch 20 MP sensor) on full zoom (100mm effective) plus the +7 diopter gives reasonably good results but as you can see in the attached pictures when really close the pictures loose detail. Do you think the E-M1 (micro 4/3 16 MP sensor) with the Olympus 60mm will be better, what is its working distance, and would it be possible to add the +7 diopter for "Super Macro" whilst still maintaining a reasonable working distance? My problem is that although I would prefer to spend less and get the smaller rig I'm worried that I may be disappointed with E-M1 with the Olympus 60mm set-up. Thanks for any help you can give. Kevin
  18. My question is how does the A7R2 with Sony 90mm macro lens compare to the Olympus E-M1 with the Olympus 60mm F/2.8 Macro Lens, and also how does that compare to my current RX100 with a x7 Diopter? There is obviously a large difference in price and size between the two systems, but does that translate into a big difference in the end results, my main areas of interest are: - overall quality - fine detail in shots - Focus accuracy, and speed, in auto mode - minimum operating distance from port front to subject for 1 x 1 - DOF - general handling/ease of use Thanks for any help you can give. Kevin
  19. Hi Guy's Thanks for all the feedback. From what I read I get the impression that if I go for the A7R2 then it would not make sense to try to save money trying to find a cheaper macro lens solution and that I should go with the Sony 90mm Macro lens. As this leads me back to a "cost" issue, and a little bit of a size worry, I'm not sure this is the best solution for me. So after a little more research I'm wondering whether I should go for a Micro 4/3 solution instead of the FF option. For much less money I could get the Olympus E-M1 with the Olympus 60mm F/2.8 Macro Lens, and still have plenty of cash left over for a medium to wide angle solution, or I could even keep my existing RX100 for wide angle duty. So I suppose the question is how does the A7R2 with Sony 90mm macro lens compare in quality/detail to the Olympus E-M1 with the Olympus 60mm F/2.8 Macro Lens, and also how does that compare to my current RX100 setup? Have any of you shot with both combinations and what are your experiences, I'm particularly interested in "distance to subject range" (front of port) at 1 to 1 magnification, focus speed and accuracy, and of course quality and detail? More questions I know but having only shot with the RX100 with a diopter I have a lot to learn. Thanks again for any help you can give. Kevin
  20. Hi All, After nearly four years with my trusty old RX100 rig, I am thinking of upgrading to something more advanced. Currently my rig consists of: - RX100 (Version 1), - Recsea housing (more than 1000 dives with no problems) - single YS-D1 strobe - Ikelite Vega Light - Dyron +7 macro converter (wet lens) - UWL-04 Fisheye Lens (wet lens) Over the years I have really liked the ability of selecting different lenses during a dive, and as I live in Curacao most of my underwater photography is either using just the fixed lens, or the fixed lens with the +7 macro converter. The wide angle/fisheye lens gets much less use although I nearly always carry it just in case, I come across something larger. So here is my dilemma, I would like to switch to the Sony A7R2 camera and am struggling to decide which lenses I should get. My problem is both one of "cost, usability/versatility and quality". Basically I have two options: - the Sony FE 16-35mm F4 ZA OSS lens , plus the Sony 90mm F2.8 OSS macro lens or - Sony FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS lens, plus either the Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter or my existing Dyron +7 macro converter (wet lens) So finally I get to the question, obviously I assume I would get better results quality wise from the first option, but the cost is significantly more, and of course I need to decide what I'm going to shoot before I do the dive, potentially missing some good opportunities. Or I could go with the second option, and sacrifice some quality, but with a large cost savings, and extra flexibility once under water for most of the shooting I actually do (as I say wide angle is not my prime concern). I understand it is of course a matter of individual choice, but which option would you choose? Perhaps more importantly, as I'm macro orientated, do any of you have experience of using the Sony FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS lens, plus the Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter, and if so how does it compare to the Sony 90mm F2.8 OSS macro lens with regards to quality, of course bearing in mind I'm upgrading from the RX100 set-up? OK I know it's a long story to read but I would really appreciate any feedback, thanks in advance. Below is my proposed new set-up. - A7Rii - Nauticam housing - Nauticam Mini Flash Trigger for Sony A7/A7II Camera - Sony SEL2870 FE 28-70mm - Nauticam SE2870-Z Zoom Gear - Nauticam N100 Flat Port 74 - Nauticam Flip Diopter Holder for M77 Macro Ports (M67 Lenses) - and either my existing +7 macro lens, or Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter - Extra Sea and Sea YS-D1 Strobe, plus strobe arms and batteries, and 2 x fibers Kevin
  21. Hi All, After nearly four years with my trusty old RX100 rig, I am thinking of upgrading to something more advanced. Currently my rig consists of: - RX100 (Version 1), - Recsea housing (more than 1000 dives with no problems) - single YS-D1 strobe - Ikelite Vega Light - Dyron +7 macro converter (wet lens) - UWL-04 Fisheye Lens (wet lens) Over the years I have really liked the ability of selecting different lenses during a dive, and as I live in Curacao most of my underwater photography is either using just the fixed lens, or the fixed lens with the +7 macro converter. The wide angle/fisheye lens gets much less use although I nearly always carry it just in case, I come across something larger. So here is my dilemma, I would like to switch to the Sony A7R2 camera and am struggling to decide which lenses I should get. My problem is both one of "cost, usability/versatility and quality". Basically I have two options: - the Sony FE 16-35mm F4 ZA OSS lens , plus the Sony 90mm F2.8 OSS macro lens or - Sony FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS lens, plus either the Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter or my existing Dyron +7 macro converter (wet lens) So finally I get to the question, obviously I assume I would get better results quality wise from the first option, but the cost is significantly more, and of course I need to decide what I'm going to shoot before I do the dive, potentially missing some good opportunities. Or I could go with the second option, and sacrifice some quality, but with a large cost savings, and extra flexibility once under water for most of the shooting I actually do (as I say wide angle is not my prime concern). I understand it is of course a matter of individual choice, but which option would you choose? Perhaps more importantly, as I'm macro orientated, do any of you have experience of using the Sony FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS lens, plus the Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter, and if so how does it compare to the Sony 90mm F2.8 OSS macro lens with regards to quality, of course bearing in mind I'm upgrading from the RX100 set-up? OK I know it's a long story to read but I would really appreciate any feedback, thanks in advance. Below is my proposed new set-up. - A7Rii - Nauticam housing - Nauticam Mini Flash Trigger for Sony A7/A7II Camera - Sony SEL2870 FE 28-70mm - Nauticam SE2870-Z Zoom Gear - Nauticam N100 Flat Port 74 - Nauticam Flip Diopter Holder for M77 Macro Ports (M67 Lenses) - and either my existing +7 macro lens, or Nauticam SMC-1 Super Macro Converter - Extra Sea and Sea YS-D1 Strobe, plus strobe arms and batteries, and 2 x fibers Kevin
  22. Hi All, My name is Kevin Stokell and I'm a PADI Dive Master living in Curacao (Southern Caribbean). I've been interested in underwater photography for many years now and am about to upgrade from my RX100 rig to a new full frame set-up, so I'm hoping to get some shared knowledge on this, if anyone needs any help with the RX100 let me know! Regards Kevin
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