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Everything posted by ChrisRoss

  1. No problem, please feel free to ask further questions here, it benefits anyone visiting the post looking for information on the topic.
  2. It really depends on how much effort you want to put into it. Most systems will take half decent video but will vary on how well the colour balance UW. If you want something simple for photos and video and the photos were mainly macro oriented a TG-6 could work - it depends on how demanding you are on video quality. This is a link to clip taken by my daughter on a TG-4 and I did some basic grading in DaVinci resolve: https://www.facebook.com/100024070899049/videos/357187765093584/ I'm no expert in grading but I think the colours came out OK. It used the default settings and UW white balance built into the camera. Grading doesn't have the capability to move colours all that much so it was fairly close to start with. Keep in mind of course there's more to good video than just clicking a button. If you wanted to be critical the pan is a bit fast and the reef top clips jump around a bit. Facebook of course has munched the video and displays a 720x 580 clip at near full screen, so better to shrink the window a little to get rid of the pixelation or maybe look on your phone. A full res 1920 x 1080 clip viewed on the computer looks much nicer.
  3. After a bit of searching I found this on backscatter's site: https://www.backscatter.com/Discountinued-Ikelite-Fiber-Optic-Adapter-for-DS The third image shows you can connect an INON or Sea and Sea cable to the converter. So I would suggest this cable (or longer version if needed): http://www.divervision.com/inon-optical-d-cable-type-l-approx.-43cm-456212143441 plus this bushing for your camera end: http://www.divervision.com/inon-rubber-bush-type-l-for-dual-fiber-optics-456212143784.html and this adapter for your housing: http://www.divervision.com/howshot-fiber-adapter-for-nauticam-housings-FA-SS2NA.html The end plugs of the cable are repairable. The fibre cable is firmly attached to the strobe but the housing end is a push fitting so will pull out rather than break. The INON L plug has good strain relief on the cable. INON provide good instructions on servicing the cables, on many other brands, the plug is moulded and the cable is a throwaway unless you can source a new plug. It may be worth ordering a couple of spare bushings for the camera end as it is quite possibly a long way to send a $6 part for your location. Here is the link for maintenance: http://www.inon.jp/technicalguide/cable-l.html
  4. I know you are reporting your observations, but it doesn't make much sense to me as when pumping out to create a vacuum inside the housing you develop a force which pushes inwards on all of the buttons and the two halves of the housing as well as the port. This is no different to the external pressure placed on the housing by water when you dive and that pressure is significantly greater than the pressure differential you can develop via vacuum. The biggest pressure differential you can develop by removing 100% of the air is one atmosphere and you get 1 bar differential pressure at 10m on housing with no vacuum and of course gets greater as you dive. The Nauticam vacuum pump is really not that efficient it has large clearances and as the pressure gets lower more atmospheric air leaks into the pump as you withdraw the piston so I would think you may get 0.5 bar vacuum at the very greatest at a guess. Pressure is pressure whether created by vacuum inside or external pressure from diving. So something else must be happening I think - perhaps the buttons behave differently when immersed in water. The pressure forces acting on the buttons is really quite low, most seem to have 3mm dia control shafts - the inward force on those buttons varies with control shaft diameter and for a 3mm shaft at 30m the inward force would 200 gram. The housing are rated with springs to resist a 700 gram force which is what you get at 100m. The deflection of the housing itself at 0,5 bar I would expect is minimal. Did you ever confirm that all the buttons work at your maximum depth - I don't know how you use your housing, when I dive I very rarely push any of the buttons, just change aperture and ISO occasionally and the review button sometimes Out of interest I checked my EM-1 MkII Nauti housing at two pumps past green and then again with an additional 10-12 strokes and all the buttons worked, mine is just one sample of course!
  5. Certainly a lot easier to deal with fibre in this situation. I have even forgotten my fibre optic cables on a trip and put together something workable from a Toslink cable(audio fibre optic cables). Bear in mind you will still need to deal with the connection to the strobe itself. When you buy your cable consider getting some spare ends if your dealer stocks them. Like this for S&S : https://reefphoto.com/collections/inon/products/inon-90-degree-double-hole-fiber-optic-plug-rubber-bush-plug You just trim a broken fibre with a sharp knife and fit the plug. The strobe end fitting for INON strobe cables is also removable and can be refitted: https://reefphoto.com/collections/inon/products/inon-optical-d-cable-43-cm-l-type-for-z-240-d-2000-s-2000 INON cables should be readily available in your region. A couple of other points, the standard converter can handle pre-flash form the camera, the high sensitivity is manual flash only won't work if your camera pre-flashes. Assume you are aware the converter only allows you to use the DS-161 in manual flash.
  6. Yes it's the Seacam strobe, they have an unrivalled reputation, but take a seat and look up the price compared to the Retra strobes. The thing to consider is you are using the edges of the beams to illuminate the centre of your photos the centre of the beam is right on the edge of the frame with a 14mm full frame equivalent lens assuming symmetrical placement and occupies the outer corners of the frame with a fisheye - just from pure geometry. What this basically means is the centre brightness used to calculate the guide number is not a complete representation of the usefulness of a strobe. Retra doesn't quote GN any longer for example. Looking at Zone 2 which is what you point at much of your images the Retra/Seacam are 2 stops brighter than the INON/S&S strobes for any given centre brightness. What this means is you can turn the strobes down compared to a strobe with less even coverage. The INON needs to be 1 stop brighter then the ikelite and the Retra 1 stop dimmer in centre brightness. Of course this may have changed with the Type 2 INON strobes.
  7. yes that may well make a difference hard to tell without doing a test. The INON are perfectly serviceable flashes and you without doubt many great shots been made with them, but the Retras certainly seem to be a step up in quality of light.
  8. YOu can see the cross pattern of the Z330 without the diffuser, look at the Retra link I supplied.
  9. Yes you need to talk to Isotta. A vacuum test is no different to diving. The vacuum you pull is normally about 200 mBar - this is EXACTLY the same as diving the housing to about 2m. The pressure difference between inside and outside will be the same as diving the housing without vacuum to 2m. What can happen is the housing back pulls in a bit closer to the camera when vacuum is applied.
  10. Yes, it shows the GN is not everything! The INON S-2000 has a nice very even 100° beam, I recall seeing the beam spread results Backscatter published and it performed quite well there - it is a very nice entry level strobe and can readily do wide angle for TG-6 and RX-100 style (1"sensor) cameras if you use the optimal f stop for the exposure - 1"sensor cameras at most need f5.6 which is f15 full frame equivalent. I would think the AOI strobe would only be useful for pseudo wide angle work with cameras like these if you use 2 of them and don't go beyond about 20mm full frame equivalent field.
  11. There was a test on these a while back. On the Retra website: https://www.retra-uwt.com/blogs/news/comparing-light-ouput They have photos showing beam spread of Z330 and DS-161 with and without diffusers along with numerical analysis. The Z330 drops off more so than the DS-161. Note though that the Zone 3 magenta reading represents a 126° beam spread from the strobe - the Z330 are specced at 110° and at that angle it is 1 stop dimmer than the DS-161. You can see the Z-330 drops more rapidly on the last point which co-insides with the 110° beam angle being reached. You can see the Retra has less drop off than even the DS-161 by this test. As I recall this test broadly agrees with the tests backscatter did a few years back.
  12. I know, I've never had a cable break and I don't take special care with them.
  13. No generally not, I have a Nauticam system and it works with no drama. So you have a gauge on the pump setup then to read vacuum? Is this your unit?: https://shop.divingexpress.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=5714 I would suggest to do a test, pull the vacuum, start the calibration sequence and once green stick the whole lot in the fridge - Do you have a way to leave the gauge connected? Or can you check the pressure again once it has cooled? Try and see what pressure it alarms at. The odd thing is that if the housing is cooling off - the pressure should be dropping as the gas inside gets colder. which means the there is more vacuum - not less. I calculate if you start with 5 psi vacuum which is 9.7 psia ( absolute pressure) and you cool the gas by 10°C (18 F) the pressure will change to 9.4 psia which 5.3 psi of vacuum - 5.3 psi less than atmospheric pressure. This should not cause it to alarm. It should only alarm if the pressure goes up, indicating a leak. I would suspect a passing valve until I could prove otherwise- either that or it's a faulty unit.
  14. Well you will need to use one of the Nauticam adapters I linked which scre on and will then take a Sea and Sea connector. At the strobe end I suspect it will take either a Sea and Sea plug or an INON screw fitting and this in the information you need to get from ikelite. If you were having trouble with the electric cables seizing - this is still a risk where the fibre optic converter attaches to the strobe as that is a screw on electric sync type fitting. You will need to periodically remove it and clean the threads and o-rings and re-fit so it doesn't seize.
  15. I think the experience varies depending on how you dive and to some extent where. I've been using a Nauticam and an INON fibre optic cables for about 5 years now and still going strong. Electric cables need to be maintained - if you leave them connected for long periods, the threads will start to corrode and seize. Fibre optucs it is no drama to disconnect and soak them as you don't need to deal with o-rings.
  16. This will depend on which Nauticam housing being used. The smaller housing take S&S plugs directly. What sort of thread is on the ikelte converter fibre cable end?
  17. If you have the converters, you also need a cable as you said and a trigger inside the housing, exactly which trigger depends upon the type of camera you have - or you can use pop up flash if your camera has one. The cable needs to have a plug compatible with your housing - if it's Nauticam that can be a Nauticam connector for most DSLR housings or a Sea & Sea plug for smaller housings like m43 housings. The other end needs to match the converter - it's not completely clear but it looks like it will take S&S or INON connectors, just by the compatible cables listed. It looks like Nauticam only sells a universal cable with S&S adapter plugs at each end which should work or if you want one end to be firmly attached by screwing on then this would go on your housing: https://www.backscatter.com/Nauticam-Fiber-Optic-Connector-for-Nauticam The S&S plugs are quite easy to pull out if the cable snags, so having one end with a screw-on connector is probably a good idea. There is also this adapter which converts a Nauticam screw on connector to S&S plugs: https://underwatercameras.com.au/aoi-nauticam-housing-fiber-optic-connector-seasea-conversion-cap/ and you should be able to use this cable: https://www.backscatter.com/Inon-Fiber-Optic-D-Cable-Type-L There will be other solutions available, the price for those adapters at Backscatter is pretty crazy expensive, but seems like that is the price for 4? If you confirm what housing you have it should be possible to narrow it down. Ask Ikelite as well about what type of cable will attach to the converter It should be S&S and INON L connector I think.
  18. What procedure do you use? Pump till first green light and then stop? Or give it 2-3 extra pumps? Does the unit claim to include temperature compensation?
  19. I think you'll have to wait and see, Nauticam might come up with something? Or it might be too hard, it looks like you need to grab a smooth dial with no protrusions.But if that knob up in front is what you use to turn it it looks like it requires you to press in on a button while turning which is an extra degree of difficulty. I think you just need to wait and see.
  20. Automatic won't work as it probably uses eye detection at the viewfinder and the housing makes the camera think you are looking through the EVF. My Olympus has a setting to disable auto EVF - it's not clear how Canon does it. It has a setting to display on screen only so that should display on LCD when you press the review button - but it's not clear if it will also use the LCD for shooting.
  21. I would add it depends on the camera you are using. Required strobe output varies with f-stop and small sensor cameras don't need to stop down so much like bigger sensors for wide angle shots. A TG-6 is max f2.8 on the wide end, a 1"sensor like a RX100 you would be shooting wide angle at f5 - f5.6 and a m43 at f8. Smaller strobes like the S-2000 and this one will be fine for wide angle with a TG-6 or 1" sensor and usable with qualifications for a m43. The difference between GN20(S-2000) and GN 33(Z-330) seems a lot but it's actually only 1 1/3 stops so a GN 20 strobe might be on full power and a Z330 would be on half power or one click below half power. Of course that assumes the guide numbers are somewhat accurate. The beam angle on this AOI strobe is quoted as 85° which is a little narrow for really wide angle, but if you use two would be OK on a TG-6 or RX-100 shooting wide either bare or with a standard 100° wet lens. You could use it at a pinch on a m43 wide setup I would guess but you would be shooting full power and your range would be limited - CFWA would be OK but sharks 2-3m away - likely not.
  22. I think it's totally realistic to expect strobes to last a long time. I have been using my INON Z-240 for 6 years now and still going strong - touch wood. The S&S strobes do have a bit of a reputation for less than perfect reliability and it's too soon to say if the YS-D3 is better as they are quite new on the market. Having said that a great many people get good service out of the YS-D2's - it's a bit of a roll of the dice. Do you habitually use rapid fire full power dumps on your strobe?? - apparently none of the strobes like that too much and the instructions specifically mention that. As to what to get the INON Z-330 seem to have a good reputation as do the Retras. The Retras a bit pricier but have a reputation for excellent lighting quality. Both INON and Retra have features to help deal with the heat generated by the electronics and would be worth looking at.
  23. A typical vacuum system I believe has a vacuum of 200 mBar inside the housing when the light goes green. On a 120mm port diameter you can estimate the closing force and it's about 22kg if you express it as weight. If you lose vacuum, the light flashes red - it's a flood situation. It would be difficult to impossible to remove the port, the back door of the housing the closing force is much more and you cannot open it until you release the vacuum.
  24. If you want to use the same port with extension with a 14-42 lens - the port chart shows that the Panasonic 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II lens uses the macro port 35 and you could add the 30mm tube to use the 60mm macro (30 + 35 = 65). That Panasonic lens was tested as the best of the 14-42 lenses to use with the WWL. I assume you are talking about using it with the WWL. Used alone it's not that wide and doesn't focus that close. The 12-50 is not really all that great a lens IMO, even if you have the special port to access the the macro switch, it only gets about 0.36x with about 100mm working distance. Plus at the 12mm end the pictures will be rather soft due to the flat port. The 14-42 does better at macro getting 0.6x -0.7x with the CMC-2 and CMC-1 respectively - albeit at the cost of rather limited working distance range. The 60mm macro is a bit easier to use to get this sort of magnification and up to 1:1 magnification. What are you trying to achieve with the a new lens? The 60mm macro has obvious applications, the 14-42 used alone in a flat port is more a snapshot sort of lens, it's neither wide nor macro, probably quite good for medium size fish portraits perhaps. It really only shines with the WWL, allowing scenic shots, big animals etc at the wide end and some CFWA capability and things like sharks that don't get close enough for a fisheye at the long end.
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