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About Mega1Gator

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  • Location
    Orlando, Florida
  • Interests
    Diving, baseball, umpiring
  1. I just got back from Little Cayman and shot almost all macro (500+ images) using one Ikelite Substrobe100a at 80 degrees, ttl, spot metering, RAW, aperture priority and manual, asa 200, AF-C (single area), using f numbers between 16 and 32. I am really happy with the results. You can do a lot at the conversion point if you shoot RAW as stated above. With one strobe I obtained some nice highlight and shading effects (at least I like it). Have fun! Brian.
  2. James, I have had no problem opening the discs. Here is the procedure that I followed. I copied all of the images from the disc to a file read by the Finepix viewer then drag and drop the images to the RAW image converter. I have had a few windows error messages, nothing that was not remedied by repeating the steps. Once converted, I then did my editing on Photoshop with no problem. Regards, Brian.
  3. While in Little Cayman last week, I had the chance to use a new device I obtained from B & H Photo to store photos. The device is an Apacer with spanning technology. A 1 gig CF card holds about 78 RAW images (Fuji S2 Pro) which can be stored onto two 700 mb cd's, takes about 15 minutes to copy the images from the CF card which connects into the device directly. The Apacer also supports at least 5 other cards without adapters. The price was about $249.00. I made primary and some backup copies of each dive. All of the images were properly copied the first time by the Apacer without exception so I did not need the backups (just being cautious). The Apacer can be brought onboard a boat as it uses a rechargeable battery. I came home with about 20 cd's, about 700 images. The Apacer also allowed me to copy images that others had loaded into their laptops using a usb cable included. Check it out, it is really convenient, compact, relatively inexpensive. Brian.
  4. I just had the chance to really use my Fuji S2 at Little Cayman, 17 dives on Bloody Bay and Jackson Bay. I had great success with AF-C, single area, even with subjects moving. I used f numbers over f 22 to get me some goodly depth of field, 60mm Nikon lens, using a single Ikelite substrobe 100a. On the closest subject setting, I missed many animals hidden inside sponges, corals, etc., as the focus would be on the foreground instead of on the main subject. (ASA 200)
  5. Hi, my name is Brian, I have been diving for 30 some years since I was 15. I started out with a Nikonos II and flash bulbs, then Nik V's and our moderator convinced me that digital is the best, and with good reason. I just took the plunge with a Fuji S2 and a 60mm macro and shoot with an Ikelite Substrobe 100a. I recently was in Key Largo for my fist dives with my new rig, had a connector short on me (Aquatica housing) I think due to an old o-ring on the connector but all is well now. Aquatica is very responsive with assistance and advice. It is interesting when you see your strobe start flashing without hitting the shutter, the darn thing kept firing even when the camera was not hooked in. Oh well, I got to eat a lot of lobster, drink beer and meet with my photo instructor, Larry Gates, in Key Largo. Anybody who wants some Nikonos and/or underwater photo training, Larry is great. Now my 15 year old son is underwater photo certified by Larry and is using my Nik V's.
  6. Scotty, thanks for the tip. Interestingly, I just heard from Fuji that my camera, 6 months old, needs a primary board replacement. If not in warranty, the cost would have been $650.00. Anybody hear of this being a systemic problem? Hope this does not happen after warranty. Mega
  7. Scotty, great image and good to know that violence is not necessary to get a damsel image! I was concerned that underwater, the S2 would do what happened on land one time when I was trying to shoot a breaching whale. The camera kept cycling and would not fire until after the subject was back in the water. If it missed the whale, what would happen with a damsel. Thanks, Mega.
  8. James, gracias. I hope S2 with the Nikon 60mm micro set for continuous auto focus (release priority) in conjunction with dynamic auto focus area will help get an image of a damsel fish. I don't even care if it is a good image to start out with. I am beginning to believe that the damsels have meetings on how to frustrate Mega1Gator and his Nik V's then, wait for me to dive on down, and just as I set up a shot, they run while I strobe nothing! I may have to borrow a spear gun and shoot a damsel then take a photo of it on the spear tip to get a good shot! Hopefully, the S2 will stop the urge for violence.
  9. James, yep, that is the article I have been studying. It looks like you have a pair of DS 125's attached using 5 pin Nikonos cables with a dual stobe sync cord as noted in your article. It also looks like there is an Ikelite quick release handle, 7 inches or so, that is attached with a ball mount coming off of the strobe as opposed to the standard flat mount that only allows verticle adjustment (ball mount is Part #9571.4 with handle stem that attches to the strobe) That ball mount probably makes it easier to set the flash angles? The clamps look like part #9577.2 and are at both ends of the handle. The base looks like the 2 X 8 Ultralight with ball mounts and same clamp to the housing, am I pretty close? For anybody reading this, the Ikelite parts are listed on the Ikelite website under "Quick Grip Handles and Arms" and the part # for the arm alone looks like #9581.07...18cm (7") handle with ball mount. They have them in 7, 9 and 15 inch arm sizes. This is becoming a checklist of what to purchase for set up and I sure appreciate it. Brian. P.S. If anybody wants to see the luckiest shot in the last month, check out the leaping Devil Ray on Rodale's Trip report "Our Costa Rica Travel Adventure" posted a few weeks ago. The ray jumped right into the frame as I was shooting the Catalina Islands.
  10. James, again, thanks. Another question. You referenced a moisture alarm, who makes them? How are they powered? What are they? Also, I assume that in the above posts, you are referring to images in your 6/30/03 review. This string is good for anyone making the jump to a housed digital as you are addressing what appears to be a number of common start-up questions. Gracias! Brian.
  11. JW, yep, I have been studying that article and saw the photos. Very well written. It looks like there is an adapter that is used to attach the base of the strobe arm to the ball mount, is that correct? Which strobe arm is being used, hard to tell in the photo. Thanks, Mega
  12. Guys, outstanding posts and thank you. I am close to kissing my NikV's goodbye, unlike my first wife, I will remember them fondly! By the way, I have never actually seen the Aquatica housing, how do the Ikelite strobes attach to the housing. I am almost decided on dual D125's. May seem like a silly question but I am wondering how easily they can be secured and adjusted, any thoughts? Mega
  13. M, you are using an Ikelite housing, what do you think compared to other housings available? Aquatica says theirs is about 8lbs with camera in, bouyancy, I am not sure about, I will assume neutral, maybe James W. can tell us as he tested that housing I think. Mega
  14. Is weight like size, does it even matter?
  15. Well, sorry for the mix up but I spoke with a person at Ikelite just a few days ago who said he was a tech and quoted me that poundage and referenced the newer design so I was just repeating what I was told. Well, now that we got that stratended owt, and given that I am making a decision on a housing, how much does the new Ikelite housing with camera in weigh versus the Aquatica with camera in? Anybody know? Mega
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