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Everything posted by Draq

  1. Thanks for the input, so far. I do not have the settings, etc., available to me now, I will update later. The krait was in the center of the image and the head and first several inches were in better focus. I think I have a bit of motion blur on the body. I took three shots and the fringing appears on each one. The camera was a D500 and I was using a nauticam 140 dome with a 40mm nauticam extension. The kenko was a teleplus HD pro 1.4 DGX. I had no other apparent issues with less contrasty subjects, but perhaps I will go back and look at some of those again. I am not sure I can upload the original image in RAW due to size but will take a look. I will get actual settings later but most likely was shooting between F9 and F13 and either 1/60 or 1/25 with Z240 strobes in TTL mode. ISO probably 100.
  2. I have heard the suggestion about using a suitcase or concealing the pelican in another bag and I would like to hear more thoughts on that. The problem I see with the old suitcase idea are these: 1. Good ones are not inexpensive and are themselves high-dollar items that are likely prone to being broken into. I would be reluctant to buy and rely on a used (pre-beaten-up) case. 2. Not-so-good cases are cheaply made. I have seen many broken ones come out of those luggage chutes and riding around on the carousel. The idea of it breaking open and ports and housing and so on falling out is discomforting. 3. By the time I wrap each item in clothing or place it in an individual padded bag, how much space do I really get unless I go to some really mammoth case? The problems I see with the concealing rolling bag with a Pelican inside are these: 1. Most rolling bags are going to add 7-9 pounds to an already heavy pelican case and gear. I just weighed a Pelican inside a rolling bag and it was over 30 lbs, empty. 2. I doubt the rolling bags are made to hold a hard case with 30-40 lbs in it. I would think handle and wheel and zipper breakage will occur early. 3. The maximum luggage size for most airlines is 62 inches. They tend to be long but somewhat narrow. The few I have seen cost around $300 and really aren't sized to fit a Pelican case well and the end result would be a huge and very heavy bag. I suspect that in addition to putting a Pelican case in the bag, I would need to stuff soft things in to keep the pelican from sliding all around and breaking the bag. I doubt that would be within the 50 lb max.. 4. A $200 pelican inside a $300 rolling bag gets to be pretty expensive luggage. Do you lock the bag and the pelican or just one. i would think if a thief saw a pelican concealed in another bag, that would virtually shout out that expensive stuff was inside. Would it be better to have a scuffed-up pelican with sea & sea and save the whales stickers on it? How about putting a tank inspection sticker on it? Finally, although I have heard of the danger of using a Pelican because it is obviously full of expensive gear, I have not heard that many stories of stolen pelican cases and no more than other gear bags. Similarly, I used to avoid gear bags that suggested dive gear but then someone pointed out that compared to other items, dive gear is not really a hot commodity for stolen merchandise, at least not fins, wetsuits and BCDs. Regulators might be a different story. I have bags with BARE and Stahlsac brands on them that seem to fit gear better than non-dive gear bags. I am not sure housings and ports would be viewed as prime theft items and I also think that with all the security protocols now in place the theft of luggage itself (as opposed to valuable items ifrom the luggage) is less than it used to be. I don't know any of the above to be true or false. just thoughts as I transition from carrying everything on board with me to dealing with larger stuff.
  3. I recall seeing something from nauticam that said the buttons on the housing do not have "stops" on the buttons that would prevetn them from damaging the buttons on the housing if subjected to an impact on the button, and a camera could be damaged as a result. I have no knowledge that would support or refute that, just repeating somehting I read. On the packing front, I am about 90% of the way to just buying a large Pelican case (probably a 1610) and using that to check for housing, ports, etc., and pay the extra bag fee, then carrying camera and lenses on board in a shoulder bag. Increasingly, I am not confident that I won't be forced to check a rolling bag of any size, especially with international airlines and international airports. I have had a couple close calls and was recently forced to check and approved-size carry on because it weighed over 7Kg. it contained things I did not want to check, but no photo gear. It had been permitted in the cabin of the same plane on the way out of the U.S., but not on the way back. Plus, I just can't pack what I need in a carry-on bag anymore, unless I start leaving stuff out that I would rather have available to me. It that unpredictability that really frustrates me. If the checked photo stuff gets misrouted, stolen or lost, then I will be very sad, but I just don't seem to have much choice, unless I hire a person to go with me for the sole purpose of hauling extra camera gear as his carry-on stuff. Don't think that is a workable plan.
  4. Here is an image. Cropped and downsized, etc., to fit here. Original was of course a raw image. I know a high contrast subject like this can be tough and did not see any fringing on other images, but still wondering.
  5. Tim, thanks for that. I was familiar with that issue. I was using the lens on a D500 and the fringing I am speaking of was on the subject itself. I can't upload an image right now, but could do so later if that aided the discussion. Sorry I misspelled Fringing in the title.
  6. I recently used a new 8-15 for the first time, both with and without a kenko 1.4. I took a few shots of a sea crate and got some obnoxious blue-green color fringing (with the kenko on). I was not in a position to take the same shots without the TC, so do not know if it might be to blame. Wondering if anyone has any thoughts about this?
  7. I am actually giving serious thought to packing housing, ports, strobes and the assorted bits and pieces we all need to use in a Pelican (larger than carry on size) and just checking it as baggage on each trip and paying the fee. Camera and lenses can go with me as carry on as they have always done. I will fret about whether the bag might get lost, delayed or stolen, but there is really no way to carry it all on unless I leave a lot behind. My main reason for the post above was that I was surprised to see that suggested as an adequate way to pack that bag since none of us can be certain the bag won't have to get checked. It looked unsafe to me and then I thought perhaps I have been overly protective of my gear. I jut got back from a trip where I was barely able to keep my small Pelican with me on Fiji airlines because they have a 7Kg limit for any bags in the cabin. I whined enough about it being fragile photo gear that I got it through, but just barely. I shudder to think about what might have occurred had it been a think tank bag packed like depicted above if they had insisted the bag get checked. I actually think the fact the bag was a Pelican is what got it through as it looked like a camera case and not just a rolling bag. I will be on Philippines air later this year and they have a similar limit. I think I am better off packing it all in a bigger Pelican as baggage and paying the extra bag fee. Dave Hicks: You have some interesting suggestions. I had never thought of putting macro lens in the port or the vewfinder in the housing. I would love to see photos of how you get all of that packed into the Think Tank Bag.
  8. I finally decided to give a try to a larger camera and housing. As expected, packing has become more of an issue. I recently saw this video from a well known underwater photo store where they show how much gear they can fit in a think tank bag. I am attaching (hopefully) a screenshot. If you look at the picture it shows the edge of an 8" or 9" dome protruding up almost 2" from the body of the bag, the balls on the tray handles extend up a similar amount and the lens shade of a small port is sticking up as well. In the video the guy demonstrating easily zips up the bag and says it is ready to go. To me, the only protection is the relatively thin lid of the bag. My question: would you folks feel the gear is safely packed, especially if the airline insisted on the bag being checked? In my mind i am seeing a shattered or dislodged 9" dome at a minimum, but maybe I am being overly cautious. FWIW I know that the SOP for the baggage handlers is to toss bags such as this onto conveyors and belts and ramps, with the soft side (lid) facing down. I would not be very concerned about this as a carry on, but I have had my roiling Pelican carry on (smaller than the one shown) taken from me on multiple occasions. I currently use the pelican for that reason. Thanks
  9. In answer to the original post, and a comment on the more recent one, I am told that the Z330s are shipping but the major U.S. retailers all have waiting lists and are filling those so there are none available to those not on lists. They may be more available outside of the U.S. From what I have seen/heard, those who have purchased them are happy with them. The Retra strobes were supposed to be out in May-June, but their website now says August-September. I have put off doing any upgrade from my Z240s for quite a while, waiting to see what happens with Retra. Luckily I really have no complaints about the 240s. I wish Retra all the best, but I am moving on and will get a couple 330s when I get the chance.
  10. Thanks. I am now leaning towards the 140, although the smaller size would be nicer for CFWA. I assume the 20mm extension is equally applicable to DX.
  11. Thanks for that input. I don't have a shallow water issue like you do, but was not sure if the 100 might cause some vignetting or other issues. I would not really expect corner issues with a fisheye. The Nauticam 140 dome is also listed on their chart as working with a 1.4 TC and there is no indication on the Zen chart about using a TC with their 100mm.
  12. Any meaningful benefit to a 140 vs 100 dome for a Nikon 8-15 on a D500 in a Nauticam housing? I would prefer smaller dome if it does not cause much issue in corners. Thanks
  13. Here are a few thoughts that may help. I have been using micro four thirds for several years now. Generally, I am happy with the results and in truth, when I am not so happy, I am pretty sure it is me and not the camera that is inadequate. Still, like most people, every time something new comes out I get excited thinking that improving my gear will make my photos better. There is no doubt that there are better cameras out there. I got very excited when the D500 came out and compared housing sizes, decided what ports and lenses I would need and so on. Same thing with some of the Sony full frame models. In the end, I am still using the Olympus because I can fit the following into my carry-on bags: camera body, 8mm, 8-18, 12-40 and macro lenses, all of the necessary adapters and extensions, a fisheye port, a macro port, an 8" dome port, two Inon strobes, housing with handles, 45 degree viewfinder and the other miscellaneous essential bits and pieces. I frequently don't take it all and so I have room to spare or can pack some stuff there instead of checked luggage. I have also been experimenting with the WWL-1 and if I take that and a 14-42, I have even more space. I can also carry or wheel the stuff around without dislocating a shoulder. I don't think I could pull that off with anything else and I have to fly to dive, so I travel a lot and don't trust the airlines to get my stuff to me or to not destroy checked bags. I have been on too many dive trips where divers get to the dive resort or liveaboard without some of their luggage and sometimes have to wait a couple days for it to show up. For that reason I also carry-on my reg, dive computer, mask, a swimsuit and a few other essentials. I figure in the worst case I can buy some tee shirts and rent a wetsuit and fins. Sony stuff was appealing, but I do like using strobes on TTL sometimes and the Sony's are problematic that way and more importantly, the lenses are huge and the port sizes would be a problem especially if I went full frame. The D500 is still appealing, but frankly I am unsure how much benefit I would really get from a crop sensor and switching everything over would not be cheap. I would love to try full frame, and if I could dive locally I would, or if I took fewer but longer dive trips I might. Much in life is a compromise, and this is one I have to make. I find it soothing to know my expensive gear is with me as I travel. In answer to your macro question, it depends a bit on your intended subject but I find the 30mm is the easiest to work with most of the time. The 60 is a bit too much unless subjects are really tiny and/or water very clear. Perhaps, if starting from scratch right now, I would go with a D500. But maybe not. Lastly, I see you already own the D850, so perhaps having that out of the way and being familiar with it tips the compromise balance the other way Good luck.
  14. FWIW, I had the same problems when housing was new. I found if I only pumped enough to cause the green light to go on, everything was fine. A few more strokes on the pump and I risked some buttons becoming inoperable at depth. I guess it might not make any sense, technically, but now only operate the hand pump until the light goes on or maybe one more stroke on the pump, and I have no problems.
  15. Oh, I see now. I should have read whole thread.
  16. I have been putting off any strobe purchases for a while. Are you still expecting to have the new strobes available in May-June? It seems odd that you will have TTL boards available in March but no strobes available until a few months later. Is the Olympus TTL board something that will be installed in a housing, and if so, are these going to be user-installed and do you know what housings they would fit?
  17. It will probably need a buoyancy collar thing like the wwl-1 does and a hard cap.
  18. I suspect that, at $4000, they aren't exactly flying off the shelves, and it may take a while before there are enough of them out there to encourage active discussions. Not criticizing the price, mind you, just commenting that this is a pretty expensive item. Of course, maybe I am wrong and they are selling like hotcakes; I wouldn't really know.
  19. Several years ago I was made to gate check my rolling carry-on with the photo gear inside. I had only some minor damage, but I was also worried about the gear for the entire flight. My typical method of carrying gear now is that I put camera body, fisheye and zoom lenses and an 8" dome port in a small carry-on that fits under the seat and meets the airlines published "personal item" size limits. They never take those from passengers that I have seen. The housing, a couple of other ports, the strobes, maybe a macro lens and some other stuff goes in a Pelican carry-on sized bag. On small puddle-jumpers I have to check the Pelican case but have not yet had it taken from me on regular flights. When that finally happens, I think the stuff in the case will be safe, since the most fragile bits aren't in there and the Pelican is more protective than the bag I used to take. Arms, clamps and other stuff goes in a regular carry-on bag my traveling companion takes with her. Even if our checked luggage doesn't make it to our destination with us, I can still assemble the camera gear and rent what I need to dive and take pictures. I use micro four thirds stuff. I doubt this would work as well with larger cameras, lenses and housings.
  20. A small bit of god news is that since Inon recently came out with a new strobe to replace the z_240, and those are finally starting to ship, there are a number of used Z-240 strobes out there and you can probably find a nice pair at a decent price. They are excellent strobes and used as you describe should last for years if they were not abused by the prior owner.
  21. This system needs time to mature before I would be willing to jump in. I have concerns about the actual use of existing lenses with the adapter for underwater use, and although I appreciate the desire to keep the same battery, it looks like too great a compromise. I will be interested to see what Canon does, but it looks like I won't be abandoning the Olympus just yet. Still, it looks like interesting times ahead for mirrorless.
  22. I am undecided on the WWL. Need to test it some more. As far as traditional wa lenses, if you can manage the $, I would skip the 9-18 and look at the 7-14 or 8-18 in an appropriate dome.
  23. I use a Nauticam housing and they have a zoom ring available, so that isn't an issue for me but thanks for the information. Can't really draw too much information about the corners from the posted shots, but I am glad you are happy with the performance.
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