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stuartv

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stuartv last won the day on January 3

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About stuartv

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    Wolf Eel

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Manassas, VA

Additional Info

  • Show Country Flag:
    United States
  • Camera Model & Brand
    Sony a7r IV, Olympus OM-D E-M10
  • Camera Housing
    Nauticam, Meikon
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Inon Z240 Type 3
  • Accessories
    Nauticam WWL-1

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  1. I got mine in March, 2020. I guess mine does not have the hardware changes. What will I be missing out on by having older hardware?
  2. I have a UWT TTL trigger for my Sony a7r IV. I anticipate buying a pair of Retra PRO strobes in the not-too-distant future. How would I be able to update my UWT trigger to have this new firmware?
  3. I think I remember reading some discussions about other strobes that talked about their Ready light coming on when the strobe was only about 80% charged. So, just to confirm, the Retra Pro Ready light does not come on until the strobe capacitor is 100% fully charged? Can you elaborate on what that implies for this video? Are you suggesting that what the video shows is better performance than one might expect from brand new, unconditioned Eneloop Pros? The same performance as brand new? Lower performance? Also, how many sets, total, do you have? I'm just wondering if you throw away a set after every 2 trips, or what. Thanks.
  4. I apologize because I think this has already been discussed, but in this video, when the Ready light comes on, does that represent that the strobe can then fire at 100%? Or only at 80% or some other level?
  5. Thanks for the suggestion. I posted some images here: https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/64007096 I also posted some images in that thread from my old camera, so you can compare for yourself. For viewing on a computer screen, I think both rigs are very capable of producing very high quality images. If I can get close enough to my subject and there is adequate ambient light, the Sony is not giving me images that are really any better for my purposes. But, those two elements are hard to achieve all the time. And when I'm missing one or both, THAT is when I feel like the Sony is really earning its keep. To me, the advantages I'm getting from upgrading from the E-M10 to the a7rIV are: I can take pictures of small things or subjects that are a little further away, and have a lot more to work with when cropping. In lower light, the full frame sensor gives me less noise. The auto focus system is vastly better on the Sony than the Olympus.
  6. I am also looking forward to getting a pair of Retra Pros with the extra battery pack on each, so that I can shoot at 3 - 5 FPS reliably...
  7. I am shooting an a7rIV with the Sony 28 and WWL-1. @SimonPierce I use pretty much the same procedure as you for shooting WA with strobes. I haven't tried it with my new rig yet, but with my old rig (Olympus E-M10), I often shot with continuous drive running at 2 - 3 fps. Usually, where I am shooting (NC) my strobes (Inon z240) are set to their f/4 setting or close to it, and I can get several frames in a row before the strobes get out of sync. I've only really gotten to dive my new rig on one trip, so far, and I did not use continuous drive at all. But, I am looking forward to experimenting with that. I took this with the a7r4 and WWL-1 weekend before last. Doh! Well, never mind. I tried to upload a couple of photos, but it will only let me upload files that are 1 MB or less. What the heck? 1 MB photo files on a photo forum?! I resized one down to 1440x960 and it was still too big. Screw it. I think the a7r3/4 with the Sony 28 and WWL-1 does a darn good job of shooting WA. It will do me just fine until I can afford a WACP...
  8. For open circuit recreational dives, I use 1 or 2 Terics, with AI. For open circuit tech dives, I use 2 Terics, with AI on my back gas. For closed circuit dives, I use a Shearwater Predator controller and a NERD2, with AI. The NERD is THE BOMB, to me. I can see my CCR cylinder pressures without moving my hands. Or, if I'm somewhere that navigation is something I actually have to pay attention to, I can change the NERD to show the compass and see that at all times without moving my hand. It even works fine in combination with my 45 degree view finder on my camera rig. I press the VF to my mask on the side of the other eye from the eye that can see the NERD. If I'm only diving with 1 computer, I always put it on my right wrist. One, so that I can monitor my depth while my left hand is operating my inflator or butt dump valve to control my buoyancy. And, two, so that if I were to have to bring a non-responsive or panicking diver to the surface, I can hold their reg in their mouth (from behind - with my right hand) and still see my computer to track depth, while using my left hand to control our buoyancy. In my opinion, everyone should always have a way to monitor depth mounted on their right wrist. As for AI... if someone says it is not reliable and doesn't specify the brand they are talking about, then you are safe to just ignore them. Different brands of AI are no more equal than different brands of cars. If someone buys a Chevette and has trouble with it, don't let them tell you not to buy a Honda, "because I had a car once and it was very unreliable!" The AI that is used by Shearwater is the same as what is used by Oceanic, Aqualung, Hollis, Sherwood, Tusa, Aeris, and I'm probably forgetting one or two. It is rock solid (as long as you follow the maintenance schedule). I have done way more dives with AI than with an SPG and yet I've had multiple issues happen with an SPG and never had an issue with my wireless AI.
  9. Wow! You must be really cold-natured. I spent a week in Feb in Utila 17 dives in 5 days. Water was 81-82 on every dive. I only ever wore a long-sleeve rash guard and board shorts. I started to feel a little cool at the end of the last day. If you're that cold-natured, I would suggest to consider a drysuit. Seaskin makes really nice 3mm compressed neoprene drysuits and really nice trilams. All their suits are made to measure. I have one of each and had my g/f take my measurements using the form that they have. Both my suits came out fitting perfectly. And, the best part is how inexpensive they are. The base model compressed neoprene suit starts at something like USD$425! The trilam starts at USD$525. All, plus shipping (which runs $60 - 80, I think - but it's pretty fast shipping). http://www.seaskin.co.uk/ If you're that cold-natured, I would think you would get a LOT of use out of a good drysuit.
  10. I don't think he means that the screen is 45 degrees. With my Sony a7r4 in a Nauticam housing, the tray that holds the camera inside the housing does hold the screen tilted up a little bit. But, it's more like 10 degrees - not 45. When you attach the tray to the camera, you flip the screen bottom out and the tray has a tab that sticks up. Once the tray is attached to the camera, you flip the screen back down and the tab holds it out from the bottom of the camera a bit.
  11. I think I must not be experienced enough to have really developed ingrained habits. I just got back from 4 days of diving down in NC with my new 45 degree Nauticam VF. I was shooting at WA and CFWA. I thought the VF was great, right from the first dive. Not to say that I had zero issues. Issues that I encountered were: Objects in viewfinder are closer than they appear! One time, I was tracking a shark in the VF and swimming slowly, to get it lined up how I wanted. I was looking at it over the gunwale of a wreck. I could see the gunwale in the VF, but I didn't realize how close I was to it until my dome actually ran into it. Fortunately, not hard and no damage. Another time, I was tracking a smaller shark that was inside the wreck, between me and a wall. I was snapping as it came closer, but when it finally started to go past and I looked up from the VF, I realized that I had trapped it between my camera and the wall. It's pectoral fins were hitting the wall and my dome to wriggle through. It is harder to see stuff. For example, I was composing a scene in a hold of a wreck where there was a shark and a bait ball in the far side of the hold. My composition was to take in almost the whole room, but the focus was to be the shark and I was waiting for that moment when the bait ball coalesced momentarily around the shark. Looking through the VF, I could not see the shark well enough to tell when the right moment was happening. I had to look up, not through the VF to really see what the shark was doing. Swimming and watching a subject in the VF was also more of a challenge to my buoyancy. I found myself watching stuff in the VF to use as a reference for whether I was starting to go up or down. But, when you're looking down at a 45 to see something that is straight in front of you, then sort of taking in the peripheral view (through the VF) to have an idea of up/down movement was a little disorienting. But, none of that outweighed the benefits that I enjoyed. The biggest one, for me, was that I was able to adjust the VF diopter so that I could easily read my camera "screen". I normally wear reading glasses, but I don't have prescription lenses in my masks. So, reading my camera settings on the back of the LCD has always been somewhat of a squinty affair and not 100% reliable. Previewing photos on the LCD was never sufficient for me to tell if things were in focus. Only that the color and basic composition was right. Looking through the VF, I could easily read the camera settings on the screen and see previews very well. Also, I am often trying to shoot at somewhat of an up angle and the VF was REALLY nice for that. And that was all only with 3 days of actual shooting. I am looking forward to getting even more comfortable and quick with it.
  12. @Architeuthis I have been shooting an Oly E-M10 for the last few years. I have always only used the LCD screen on the back. I have had many occasions, when shooting WA, where I was trying to shoot something at an upward angle and something was below me, making it where I really could not see the display. I.e. I want to rest the camera on the bottom, pointing at an upward angle. I was shooting my E-M10 in a Meikon housing, so adding a better VF was not an option. Now, I have moved up to a Sony a7r4 in a Nauticam housing. Based on the many times I wished I could see my display and hold the camera below me at the same time, I think a 45 degree VF will prove quite useful to me. Something that may or may not be related, but prior to my new Sony, even for land photography I would always use the Live View on the back of the camera. I would only use the VF if bright sunlight made it hard to see the LCD on the back or something like that. Since I got the Sony, I have found that I started that way but have gradually transitioned (not really a conscious decision) to using the VF almost all the time. I am a bit surprised at myself and how that has worked out. But, it contributes to my feeling that I will be quite happy with a 45 VF for my u/w housing.
  13. Thanks, @TimG and @ChrisRoss. A 45 degree VF is going on my shopping list.
  14. I can see a 45 being very handy. I've had lots of shots where I was wanting to shoot at a bit of an upward angle and couldn't really do it and see my LCD screen very well. For shots where the 45 was not good (say, wanting to shoot at a downward angle), I could still just look at the LCD screen. But, I am thinking one of the nicest things might be that I could use the diopter adjustment so that I could really read/see the viewfinder well, instead of needing to having corrective lenses in my mask... When I'm shooting on land, that is what really got me to using the VF most of the time, instead of looking at the screen on the back.
  15. @TimG So the 180 really is just to let you be a little further from the back of the housing itself? Otherwise, it's just the same angle as looking through the built-in VF?
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