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kthan

Problems with D70 + Sigma 15mm FE

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Hi

 

Just returned from a week of diving in the Maldives with nothing to show for underwater.

 

Having previously used a S2 Pro in Ikelite housing, I have just recently migrated to the D70. The dome port (#5503) and Sigma 15mm FE lens were old but having the previous experience of using them, i left for Maldives without trying out my new rig in the pool prior to the trip...

 

Well, in a nutshell, disaster struck!

 

Most times, i couldn't trigger any shots off underwater. My camera was in AF-S. No problems taking land shots with cam in the housing though. I switched to MF out of desperation underwater and this was what I got.

 

DSC_0173upload.jpg

 

On another dive, someone on the boat suggested setting AF-C on the camera. No problem triggering underwater now, but pics were similarly out of focus.

 

DSC_0417upload.jpg

 

I couldn't understand what was the problem as land pics taken with the camera in the housing looks perfectly fine.

 

does anyone know the reason and solution? Thanks in advance. (hope it is not because i need an extra diopter behind teh dome port)

 

Eric

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Eric, I'm very sorry to hear about your bad experience with your new rig.

 

Are you sure you are using a 5503? They aren't usually marked, maybe you've got it switched with another dome?

 

That combination should work great. No diopter needed. Even in manual mode, the DOF on that lens is so great that you should have gotten some in focus shots.

 

How were you starting focus?.....half depress shutter or AF-ON button? Is it possible that the AF-On button was activated and you were trying to activate focus with the half depressed shutter? That would lead to out of focus shots.

 

Karl

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Peter : tks for the drawing. I will go check the exact dome port i have tonite. from the looks of it, #5503 seems liekly. I will try out your recommended settings once i have the chance.

 

Karl: I half depress shutter to focus lock. By AF-On, u mean the MF/AF switch? It was on AF then....funny thing is the combi worked fine on land (taking pics thru the housing + dome).

 

i am leaning towards the refractive property of water, thus bring the virtual image nearer than the minimium focusing distance of the FE lens; but Karl, seems like u have no problem with your FE and D70 previously. I hope it is some internal camera settings and not equipment fault. Cannot fork out any more $$ since X'mas has already come early.

 

Eric

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Eric, I was referring to the AE/AF button on the back of the camera.

 

Go to your custom menu and check the setting #15. What is it set on?

 

Karl

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the dome port is indeed #5503.

 

Karl, I reset everything before checking setting #15.....is default correct (AE/AF Lock) correct?

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Eric, that's correct if you want to use the shutter half depress to activate focus.

 

I can't imagine why you are having these problems with this setup.

 

Karl

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Hi All,

 

This does appear to be a strange one indeed, If the system appears to work fine on land even in the housing then it can only be one of 2 things

 

1. when the housing is under water pressure something is jigging with the focus system on you D70.

 

PLEASE PLEASE make sure that you dont have CLOSE FOCUS SUBJECT PRIORTY engaged in the menu,,,, this will be the culprit of most problems.

 

and that you have Dynamic Area OFF.

 

it will STILL be same even with AF-C on if CFSP is ON

 

Just AF-S thats all thats needed for a good test.

 

It will appear to work onland even through the dome if you have CFSP turned on your camera as it just wont see the dome and focus on the nearest object in the frame.

 

2. there is indeed a refraction issue.

 

The 15mm FE will focus as close as you can almost get to anything, I've actually had mine with the dome touching the subject and it still focused in.

 

I suppose there could be a possibilty that its actually focusing on the DOME itself infront of the lens. or if the water conditions are so turbid that its focusing on particle matter.

 

however you do say that the results were the same even in Manual Focus, its sure steering towards a refraction issue i'd guess.

 

I'm not an ikelite user, however i have been, And never really had an issue.

 

just for a comparison here is a shot from my 15mm the dome was touching the Anemone... at times when the current took it.

 

Sorry for that in advanced. :)

 

post-4127-1132610260_thumb.jpg

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I know this sounds like a "duh" but make sure that when you put the camera into the housing, it doesn't bump the switch on the lens to the MF setting.

 

Sincerely,

James Wiseman

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James, i know sometimes it is the minor stuff we forgot. Just like Mitch's L-Lock switch. This time, i actually did ensure that it was in AF.

 

Criag, I'll check on the CFSP tonite.

 

Tks everyone for their help. I will try to get into a pool this weekend and see if it works. Hope it does! :)

 

Eric

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Just another daft suggestion but, and i am not sure how they make the acrylic dome ports but could it be a manfacturing residue left inside?!

 

Being new gear........

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Hi guys

 

water test over the weekend and...........problem persisted. I made sure D70 was set to AF-S, single focus area.

 

With cam in the housing, I just couldn't trigger off. Yet, lift the housing above the water, focus, trigger, and camera shot like a dream.

 

Hopefully, Ike gets to read this after the thanks giving holidays. Maybe all dome port is not made equal.

 

Leaving for Lembeh in 2 weeks and hopefully, the Tamron 90mm has no such problem behind the new, yet to arrive flat port.

 

Hopefully, this is indeed a focusing problem behind a dome port and ntg else. Will try to borrow another dome port to test.

 

Eric

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HI

 

Just another note, This problem could well be an issue with a camera control rod.

 

whilst underwater pressure it could just be pushing onto a button just enough to lock out your camera.

 

You needed to put the camera into manual focus and repeat the test see if you can trigger the shutter. if you can, then it could well be a dome refraction issue.

 

if you can't then i can only suspect a function button issue.

 

regards

 

craig

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How old is your Sigma FE?

 

Might have worked with Fuji S2 but might not on the newer Nikon D70. A few friend's got "old chip" versions of both the Sigma 50mm macro and 15mm FE which when used on their Canon Digital Rebel's didn't work right. 7 days after a call to Sigma they had the "new chip" in their lenses including shipping there and back. All was fine after that....

 

Just an idea...

 

dhaas

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Craig, no problem triggering in MF underwater, except pics were not sharp.

 

dhass, the lens is 3-4 years old. But the lens work perfectly fine onland, even behind the dome port. Problem arises only when i try to trigger underwater.

 

Eric

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Craig, no problem triggering in MF underwater, except pics were not sharp.

 

Eric, to me these symptoms can only indicate one thing, a wrong (or bad) dome port. Do you have any friend that has an Ikelite system from which you can borrow a dome? Can your dealer do this?

 

If the dome is ok, the only other cause is a problem in the lens. The only lens problem that can cause results like this is the lens failing to focus at close distances. You can check this outside the water. Photograph an object at the minimum focusing distance (not sure about the Sigma, but should be around 12 inches), if it focuses the lens is fine and the port is to blame.

 

Luiz

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Luiz, the lens focuses fine out of water but i haven't try teh min focusing distance. will do that. i think it should be fine.

 

dealer / friend is away on dive trip, so i guess i can only borrow one next week :D

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Tried the FE hind another dome. Same problem so I sent the FE to Sigma Service Center and they claimed that lens suffered impacts and has alignment problems. So it could be a lens problem despite being able to take land pics. Anyway, will only find out after getting the lens back and retry it in the dome port.

 

Thanks everyone for their contribution. Wetpixel rocks!

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