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About Algwyn

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    Sea Nettle

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  • Camera Model & Brand
    Nikon D7500
  • Camera Housing
    Easydive Leo 3
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Subal SN800, Sea&Sea YS-D2, Retra Strobe

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  1. Yes, very nice improvement If you contact Milo, he will probably be able to supply the new battery PCB with the On/Off switch
  2. The only drawback of this new position of the V5 XB is that the inside of the housing is a bit more crowded on this side. There was a small difference between the V5 XB that I received and the pictures that I shared initially: there are no "splicer" connectors to connect the wires to the battery PCB. Instead there are small connectors on the PCB, where the wires can be inserted and fixed without soldering. The small jumpers used on these connectors to unplug the wires, which was very convenient to uninstall and reinstall the Leak Sentinel to the other connector. The only drawback of this option is that you need to be careful as the connectors are small and delicate. You need to be careful when connecting or removing the wires. This new version of the battery PCB also has an On/Off switch which enables to disconnect fully the battery from the Leak Sentinel, and prevent it from being drained during long storage.
  3. I have received the Leak Sentinel V5 XB that I ordered from Miso. (The VividHousing website is not up to date, but Miso answers very quickly and helpfully to email) The reduction in size is even more spectacular when comparing to the V4: The installation was quite straightforward: unscrew the V4 from the housing, screw the V5 XB, cut the wires to the appropriate length inside the housing, connect the wires to the battery PCB. The inside of the housing is quite roomy, so there was no shortage of space to place the battery PCB: So everything went very smoothly, until I tested the housing. There was a massive leak, and the housing could hold vacuum! After looking the source of the leak, I found that it came from the seal between the housing and the Leak Sentinel. The base of the V5 XB is slightly wider than the V4 (barely noticeable, about 0.1 mm). The connector on the housing is surrounded by a groove which fitted well with the V4, but was too tight for the V5, and it was preventing it to fully screw and make a thigh seal. Fortunately, the housing has a second connector on the right hand side which was not previously used. The V4 was too big to be placed there, but the reduced size of the V5 meant that it could fit there. There was no further issue with this second connector, and the seal hold tight! [Continuing in an other post as I reached the size limit]
  4. Did you shoot pictures in RAW format when you took pictures with your old camera without strobes? If so, you have a little more margin to recover light. For your future pictures, make sure to: use RAW file format take a grey WB card underwater to be able to set the WB at the depth/time where you want to take natural light pictures. To get the most WB adjustments, you'll need to process your RAW files in post processing. So to get the WB, take a shot of the WB card, that you will use in post-processing to adjust the colors. So in post processing (Camera RAW), you use this WB picture to get the Hue/Saturation parameters, you can then apply these parameters to all natural light RAW files taken at the same depth/time. To process WB a bit further, there are options a bit more efficient than tweaking the HSL sliders individually, that you can apply once you have imported your white balanced RAW files in Photoshop Copy your picture in 3 new layers, then apply to each of these layers the following adjustments: AutoTone, AutoColor, "Match Color +neutralize option". Each of these options do some kind of color/tone correction, "optimizing" the color settings of the picture. Depending on the picture, one of these options will give better results than the others, so hide the others and work with the best option. These auto settings are often too strong, the next step is to smoothen the effect by adjusting the transparency of the layer.
  5. When you have the opportunity, I strongly advise buying the Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM. It's an extremely versatile lens, very useful for dives where you may find large and small creatures. Its range is also useful when shooting large pelagic such as mantas or whale sharks. You may shoot at 70 mm when they are a bit far, or to 17 mm when they are not too shy and come close. It also works very well with small critters, and its short focusing distance enables good macro shots. So in dive sites where you have a very diverse fauna, it's very good.
  6. Hi, For Lembeh / macro, the 105 mm would be better. It gives you more room to shoot subjects, which is good for skittish fish/critters. For Komodo, you would probably go with a wide angle lens for most dives. Usually go first for fish eye, except if you don't like this fish eye effect. The issue in Komodo is the great diversity of dive, where you may have subjects from macro (nudibranchs) to very large pelagic in the same dive. Unfortunately, there is no full frame equivalent to Sigma 17-70mm which is extremely useful for such diverse dives.
  7. I have contacted Miso from Vivid Housing to have details on this new version of the V5 Leak Sentinel. The Vivid Housing website is not up to date, but Miso is answering very quickly and very helpfully to any question sent by email. He sent to me some pictures and information. This really looks like a great improvement over the standard V5! The two parts of the V5 XB: the main body, and the battery board Pictures of the V5 XB installed: Here is the comparison between V5 and V5 XB:
  8. I can only guess at the first question: bumpers would be neutral/negative buoyancy, while the neoprene cover would be slightly positive. Bumpers would facilitate cooling of the flashes through direct contact between flash body and water. it would be great if Oskar could confirm benefits of the bumpers vs. neoprene cover. According to the Retra website, most accessories (diffusers, neoprene cover, reduction ring) are compatible for all versions of the flash. The bumper and LSD seem to have a different version between the Original and new retra flashes. Leakage detector is still in the specs of the Retra Prime and Pro Alain
  9. Hi, Not with a SB 5000, but with a SB 800. Connected to housing with a Nikonos 5 cable. Great thing is that you get all the power of Nikon TTL system. The camera recognise the flash and you get the full benefits of the direct communication between the camera and flash. Weakness is that this TTL system only support a single flash with a wired connection. To get two flashes you have to either: use a third party system to split the TTL signal to two flashes switch to manual flash In both cases, you loses the benefits of the native communication between the Nikon Flash and Camera. In Nikon TTL system, secondary flashes are designed to be commanded by the Master flash through light signal. This doesn't really work well in a housing underwater, especially with housing like the Subal, with hides the light flash sensor inside the housing. You could try to use an UW strobe which can be commanded as slave through a light sensor. However this is less reliable than using fiber optics. Given that a flash housing like Subal's are about as expensive than a Retra strobe ... I gave up trying to tinker a way to make this work. But for those who are interested in tinkering, there could be a way to make this work with a custom fiber optic rigs to transmit the light signal between the Master and slave flashes. Many would say that you don't need TTL, and that they are using their UW strobes in manual. In that case there is little benefit using a Nikon SB 5000 in a housing. The flash housing is also quite big and heavy compared to a strobe. When traveling this is a big disadvantages. This is why I've stopped using this housing and switched to UW strobes.
  10. That's surprising, I thought the Nikonos strobes were using the Nikonos 5 pin sockets and cables, which were designed for these Nikonos strobes. Most SLR housing manufacturers may install Nikonos 5 pin strobe sockets on the housing. That's part of their configuration options: Aquatica (option for their D850 housing for example: #20084-NK Aquatica housing for Nikon D850 with Dual Nikonos connectors) Nauticam (M14 NIKONOS 5-PIN BULKHEAD WITH MICRO CONNECTOR ~FOR NIKON TTL CONVERTER COMPATIBLE WITH NA-D5/D500/D850 Sku: # 26074) Hugyfot (standard strobe port option for Nikon housing is Nikonos) Easydive Subal (they even make housing for your Nikon flashguns ...)
  11. Actually they don't have the Aquako lens in stock ... error in their stock management!
  12. The Aquako website is still not translated in English ... it has a proeminent "Shopping Int'l" button, which doesn't work. I was wondering wether I would try to buy the Aquako lens directly from Korea, but just found out that they have a reseller in France. http://www.plongimage.com/catalogsearch/advanced/result/?marque=190 They have the Aquako Super Macro Lens II, III and IV in stock. There is another reseller in Europe, Austrian (https://www.unterwasserkamera.at/shop/catalog/en/?manufacturers_id=180) but with more expensive prices ...
  13. I never experienced a Sony camera. Sorry to hear about this poor battery and flash cycle time. Have you checked the Turtle TTL converter? they have a version for Sony, tested with the A6500. It even enables switching between TTL and Manual flash underwater ....
  14. My first housing was also a Fantasea, for a Nikon D80 (Fantasea was doing DSLR housing at that time). It was great value To come back to your TTL question, here are my thoughts based on my (limited) experience: Do I use TTL? Yes, almost always. It just works! You can use manual flash, but the exposure will be less accurate. Even if you tend to shoot subjects around the same distance, many factors impact lighting, so TTL in my experience is always better. As you start underwater photography, there are many more things that you need to focus on, than setting the right flash power manually. If you need to fine tune balance between ambiant light and the strobe light, a modern strobe like the YS-D2 has exposure compensation settings in TTL. So all taken into account, TTL from my point of view is more practical, more efficient, and gives all the level of controls that you need ... Which kind of TTL? given your set-up, I would start with optical TTL to link your A6500 to your YS-D2. You should first test the YS-D2 in DS-TTL mode, it should just work. You can test this above ground. Do you need a TTL converter? Most probably no. A TLL converter is: required when your camera do not have an integrated flash. You put the TTL converter in the camera flash shoe as you would use a wireless controler on land (in Nikon range, it would be like using the SU-800 controler) sometimes useful if your integrated flash is depleting your camera battery too quickly. While shooting under water, even though the actual lighting is performed by your strobe, your integrated flash will shoot as if it was lighting the scene. Some have found that it was depleting the camera battery too quickly. The TTL converter replaces then the integrated flash and saves your camera battery. I never had such problem with camera battery (however always used Nikon cameras). Before buying a TTL converter, you should test first your mileage with the integrated flash ... Vacuum valve? yes ... very useful, as everybody agrees. My current housing is equipped with a Leak Sentinel V3. Quite good, however changing the battery is a pain ... There is a Leak Sentinel V5, probably best option if you can get it. The battery seems much easier to change, and the LED light much more visible.
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