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Everything posted by philmayer

  1. I'm going on a group trip out of Morehead City, NC the weekend of their annual Seafood Festival -- Oct 5-7. North Carolina Seafood Festival We will be diving wrecks like the Papoose, U-352, and the Schurz. We should see sand tiger sharks, lionfish, eels, and huge clouds of baitfish. There was even a whaleshark spotted a couple weeks ago! The dive operator is Olympus Dive Center and we've got their 48' boat Midnight Express all to ourselves. Olympus Dive Center - Home Water temp should be 80-85 deg with 75-150ft viz. The trip includes 3 days of 2-tank diving, breakfast and lunch on the boat each day, a BBQ Saturday night, and lodging in either the dive lodge (bunkhouse) or hotel rooms. It does not include tank rentals or fills. 3 days of diving and staying in the bunkhouse is ~$600. There are still some spots available on the trip. I'm trying to find more folks to go so I can have more fun! The more the merrier! Who wants to go?
  2. I have the 60 as well as the 105VR. Both work great, but if I were to get only one it would be the 60. The 105VR can be a real pain in low light. I used it some last week in Dominica -- horrible viz, cloudy skies, poor light. Even with focus lights, the 105 hunted A LOT. On sunny days, it works great though.
  3. I hope this turns out to be nothing since I haven't gotten to go yet. We have one of the Aggressor boats booked for next October. Our group took the whole boat.
  4. I know it's been a while since this thread was active, but I went to Dominica last week and wanted to post my thoughts. Liat SUCKS. Carib SUCKS EVEN MORE! We had a dozen people going on the trip. We were flying Delta from Knoxville to Atlanta to Antigua, then Liat from Antigua to Dominica. 8 days before departure Liat canceled our flight. The trip leader and the travel agent got 9 people rebooked on another Liat flight, so their routing stayed the same. For the remaining 3 (yes, I was one of them), they changed my routing 6 times in 6 days because Liat and Carib kept screwing around. At one point I was going to have to spend the night in Antigua, then go to the resort a day late. I would also have to leave a day late, and lose a day diving because the resort wouldn't have any boats going out on Saturday. We eventually got routed Knoxville-Atlanta-San Juan on Delta, then Liat for San Juan to Dominica. The inbound Liat leg wasn't too bad. We only left an hour late. Because they needed to refuel the plane. But couldn't because the pilot parked the plane on top of the fueling point. After seeing them park the plane, then move the plane, and some of the other idiotic things they did on the ground, I was very surprised that they landed us on the correct island! For my return leg, I had to fly Carib out of Canefield. We arrived in Dominica on June 30. I had specifically asked the trip leader and the travel agent several times about weight limits and they both checked -- 50lbs per bag, 2 checked bags and 2 carryons. My checked gear weighs about 100 lbs, and my 2 carryons (with 2 cameras, 5 lenses, laptop, etc) weigh another 60-80. We arrived at the Carib counter to find out that they had changed their policy. As of JULY 1 -- the day after we arrived -- they now only allow 50 lbs of checked baggage and 1 carryon. I had to pay $84 for overweight baggage to fly from Dominica to Antigua. I also had to check one of my carryons -- the one with most of my lenses, one of my camera bodies, and my housing and ports. The Carib folks were absolutely no help. Until something changes, I won't be returning to Dominica, nor will I be traveling to anywhere that I have to fly Liat or Carib.
  5. Did you get the PM with photos?
  6. Lots of tire kickers, but still available.
  7. Also, if you do not have the camera and lens in the housing, you can see the o-ring from the inside.
  8. The photos load very slowly, but that might just be a server/connection issue. I like the large thumbnails, but would accept smaller ones to get them to load faster. The previous/next popups are nice but annoying. I like the basic theme -- the basic black background -- too many people overwhelm the phtos with a poor background.
  9. The update is to change the circuitry inside the strobe that controls TTL. Without the update, TTL doesn't work. As long as you use a digital sync cord, you should be able to use the strobe in manual mode without issue. Nobody can make the upgrade except Ikelite. You have no choice other than to send it to them if you want it upgraded.
  10. I've never used the .16 ring. I just got my port a month or so ago, so I ordered the .22 ring. I know the .24 rings was recommended for a while as well. I haven't shot anything UW yet that tests the corner sharpness.
  11. I don't have the 6" port for it, I use my 12-24 in the 8" port. It works very well.
  12. 1- The shutter realease is much quicker using the housing controls than with my finger on the trigger Any way to adjust this or just get used to it ? It's not adjustable AFAIK, it just takes a while to get used to. Doesn't the D70 have an AF-ON button? Many people use that to focus, then the shutter release only for tripping the shutter. 2-The viewfinder looks smaller(tinie weenie) with my mask on and looking thru the housing viewfinder. Do you think an extra magnified viewfinder diopter would help? I don't think it would work. Does your housing not have a magnified viewfinder? My D100 and D200 housings do. I think a diopter in your mask might be a better idea. A bifocal lens at the bottom of the mask lens? 3- Since the SB 105s will not TTL up with the D70. I am wondering if the auto bracket function will work. (strobe putting out a constant blast and the camera changing f stops ? If you are using the strobes at full power, no. The strobes will not cycle fast enough. Also, if you're shooting anything other than still-lifes, your subject is going to move. The best solution is to spend the time to learn about distance vs strobe output. Also, when shooting, shoot your photo, review it, make adjustments, shoot again. You've got a digital camera that will provide you with instant feedback. Use it to your advantage.
  13. I have no idea why it's installed that way. I'd like to know too.
  14. The magazine doesn't have your permission to use the photos and they know it. But they also have more money to throw at lawyers than you do. Before using your photos, someone from the mags photo dept should have contacted you to verify usage. You will have more luck getting responses over here: http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showforum=21
  15. I have the 8" dome and it's great! My 105VR port arrived at the shop today, hopefully I'll get a chance to play with it in the next few days. I think you'll enjoy the Ikelite system. I certainly have!
  16. I have 3 Ikelite housings and a bunch of ports. I've heard the same things about them being cheap, but that certainly hasn't been my experience. My housings are very well made and have never given me a moment's trouble. If it was a shop that sold Ikelite gear and could show you specific housings they've had issues with, I would look at it differently. Until then, I'm going to call BS. They just want your money.
  17. The 105VR lens is FANTASTIC! I've used the regular 105 and the VR is definitely better for me. It's more expensive, and much bigger, but it's incredibly sharp. I've never tried supermacro, so I can't advise you how to make that work.
  18. Thanks all, those are the sort of things I was wondering. I already have a flat port for the 60 and 105, but need to get the flat port for the 105VR. I wanted to understand mainly for transportation reasons. If I could get away with carrying fewer ports on the plane, it would make life easier. Now that I've had the 8" dome in the water I can see some of the handling issues.
  19. Nobody's looking for a housing for a D100?
  20. I have an Ikelite housing and the 8" dome port. I use Nikon cameras and lenses -- D200, D100, 12-24, 18-70, 18-135, 60 macro and 105 macro. What are the pros and cons to using the 60 macro lens behind the 8" dome port?
  21. I don't take the battery charger on the boat, but spare batteries, yes. Spare o-rings for everything. Housing back, port, strobe, sync cable. Also I take plenty of microfiber towels to dry everything if I need to tear it down to change something.
  22. I've sold a few things on eBay, but I'm certainly not an expert. For my sales, I only accepted PayPal. I got plenty of spam, especially from brand new members in China. The escrow folks are scammers. There's only one or two escrow services that eBay endorses (I'm sure because they own it). I put up 3 or 4 pictures with each auction just so folks would see what condition the items were in -- camera bodies. I'd certainly look carefully at anyone with a low feedback rating, or someone who just joined.
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