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New Olympus C-5050

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It appears that Olympus quietly introduced a new C series 5 megapixel camera.

 

Having been a big fan of the "C" series cameras in the PT series housings, I was wondering if anyone knows if a housing will be available for the C-5050. I am hoping the PT series housing in particular since they are great for freediving.

 

Specs can be seen here

 

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

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:blink: Oops - looks like I missed checking out Marine Camera - they have a listing for the housing and the camera...

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Also,

 

Since no one has had a chance to dive w/ this camera yet, it's hard to give a good evaluation.

 

Cheers

James

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Actually the 5050 is the exact same camera as the 4040 with one more mpix. Allen has the housing at underwater digital.

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Actually,

 

I've been browsing the net myself, looking for an affordable camera and housing and there is a housing available, the PT-15 from by olympus Japan.

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I just picked up the C5050 & the PT-015 today, and next week I'm off to where the water is. Can't wait to try it out!

 

A question about add-on lenses...

 

Previously I was using a Sony P5 housed in a MPK, and I had a Sea&Sea conversion kit. I have been using the Sea&Sea wide-angle lens (20mm) & a macro lens with reasonable success (some problems with the setup, but that's another story).

 

Today I tried fitting the Sea&Sea adapter for the Olympus housing onto the front, and I found that unless I zoom about 2/3 of the way in, I can see the conversion mounting in the corners of the image.

 

I assume this means there's no point trying to use this 20mm lens with the new camera, since I suppose there's not much point using a wide-angle lens if I have to zoom in to do so?

 

I also assume there's not much point in using the macro lens, since the Oly already has a super-macro mode which allows focus at 3cm (on land)?

 

However, I don't know much about this so any feedback would be welcome. I don't fancy paying for the conversion mounting only to find that it's no use! On the other hand, if it's worthwhile then I'll buy it before the trip.

 

Thanks

-David

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Actually just did some tests with the macro lens compared to the inbuilt super macro mode. I tested to see what is the smallest size of object which can fill the image while allowing the camera to focus:

 

With the Sea&Sea 2x macro lens (same results in normal and macro modes)

- wide: 55mm (but the lens adapter masks 11mm so only 44mm is visible)

- tele: couldn't get focus in the small bucket I was using for the test

- half-zoom: 40mm (but a little blurred at the edges. and the adapter is visiable in the corners)

 

In super-macro model with the macro lens attached only the middle of the image is in focus.

 

Using the inbuilt super-macro mode: 38mm.

 

Obviously no point having that macro lens for this camera.

 

(I expect those who actually know something about photography already knew I'd get results like these. But I must confess I don't understand how macro mode works, and why I need to choose a different mode for macro instead of the camera just focusing at whatever distance the object is, in a single mode...)

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David - as i'm looking to buy a 5050/PT015, i was wondering where you

found them, if they were "in stock", and their prices. Mike

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Yeah David, where did you get the PT-015 from? Will be taking (fingers crossed) delivery of the C5050 end of this week but can't seem to get the housing in Australia. Leaving for Solomons on 26th Dec - info will be greatly appreciated. :)

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Also noticed you had Sea and Sea WAL and adapter for the MPK for the P5 - my girlfriend is looking for a good US store where you can order online from - can you recommend any?

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also want to buy Olympus 5050 + housing too before Christmas.

would appreciate if you oculd tell me where to buy

 

:)

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Sorry to disappoint - I'm based in Hong Kong. The C5050 came out about a week ago, and I found a couple of shops in MongKok that had "grey import" housings (ie purchsed by the shop's agent in Japan, but not officially available here and not supported by Olympus).

 

FWIW the prices were HKD5480 for the camera (say, USD 703) and HKD 1400 for the housing (say, USD 179)

 

So you'd guess I also don't know where to buy the Sea&Sea stuff in US.

 

Regarding the converter for the MPK - contrary to my experience with the Oly, I found the Sea&Sea stuff worked well with the Sony. I'm giving up on the Sony because there's no control over the camera's aperture and exposure. That means I can't force the camera to use mainly the flash for lighting, because the camera will always choose exposure settings which work without the flash, and then using the flash results in overexposure. So it's hard to get good colours. But I found it good for shots without the flash.

 

Incidentally, I decided to buy the PCU-01 close-up lens. Interesting, using this with full zoom, compared to the super macro mode it can magnify 50% more, but the big advantage as far as I'm concerned is that the focal plane is then 8cm from the housing instead of 2cm. That should make it easier to position the camera for some shots.

 

-David

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also want to buy Olympus 5050 + housing too before Christmas.

would  appreciate if you oculd tell me where to buy

 

:)

try our sponsor, Marine Camera Distributors. they have the PT-015 housing.

How is marine camera's setup with the Epoque ES150DS Strobe, Fiber optic sync, Epoque Tray and ESA-FASF-10cm arm for $644.35 with the PT-015? This will be my first venture into a underwater camera. Would any one suggest a different setup. What kind of len's should I go with.

 

Also where could I get insurance to cover the camera if the housing floods?

 

Thanks,

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some have looked to their home owner insurance and purchaseed

an inexpensive rider for the coverage (posted elswhere on wet pixels)

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House policy is the way to go it costs just a few dollars extra if you list its value on top of the house contents.

 

For too long these Insurance companies have taken $1000's away from divers - then have the cheak to make claims difficult and lengthy

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I'd be interested in hearing performance results from this camera. 5 mega pix is not bad for a point & shoot . It may be worth a short term investment until I consider SLR investment. On this score I am eagerly awaiting the S9 reports.

 

Any users of the new 5050 please post you opinions here so we can all learn.

 

Mark H

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Some first impressions of the C5050-Zoom with the PT-015 housing

 

Note: Previously I was using a Sony P5 housed in a MPK-5. I don’t regard myself as an expert on underwater digital photography and someone with more expertise might form quite a different impression.

 

I took the camera on a trip to Kapalai for 10 days, during which I did about 30 dives. The visibility was not good (generally 5m or less) but there were plenty of interesting subjects. On a couple of days we went to Sipadan but even there the vis was only 10m or so.

 

Overall, after the first 5 dives or so, I thought quality of the pictures was already much better than I had achieved with the Sony after about 80 dives.

 

What I most liked

- The white balance settings seem to do a pretty good job (once I got it sorted out!) for non-flash pictures. This was a good thing since my external flash wasn’t working well on this trip. Overall I’m very happy with the colours in the shots.

- Ability to save 8 different camera settings and recall them quickly.

- Shutter lag is shorter than I am used to.

- After a bit of messing around with diffusers, I got good exposure results on macro using the in-built flash and its automatic metering, without needing to use the external flash.

- Autofocus seems pretty good (all I need to do now is to find a way to stay perfectly still in the water ...)

 

What I didn’t like

- The positioning of the LCD screen. You have to be almost directly behind the camera to see the panel, as the housing puts a rubber sleeve in front of it to shield it from light which might otherwise make it hard to see the screen well. It’s really hard to see what’s on the screen if you need to put the camera in a low position to take a shot. On the other hand, when looking at the screen from behind the camera, it’s then hard to see directly an object close in front of the camera, as the housing body blocks the direct line of sight from the eye. This can make it hard to position the camera properly for the shot and sometimes when very close up I couldn’t tell for sure that the housing was not about to bump into the object. Admittedly my depth perception (judgment of short distances) is not too good anyway compared to most people.

- Using the housing, I can’t reliably tell when the shutter button reaches the lock position, so I ended up taking shots before I wanted to sometimes.

- The white balance doesn’t work too well if I point the camera at a white card to set the balance; the subsequent shots were too red. To get good results without the flash I have to find some near-white sand to set the white balance. I can’t work out why this should be.

- It’s a bit awkward to rotate the knob for most adjustments underwater – you need to press a button or two, while simultaneously twisting a knob. Could be a problem if there’s a significant amount of weight attached to the camera.

- I couldn’t work out how to get the histogram to display constantly in Manual mode (no problem in some other modes)

 

In spite of these compaints, overall I'm extremely happy with the camera & housing.

 

If you want to see a couple of examples colour balance without a strobe, you can see some sample photos (low resolution only) at http://uk.photos.yahoo.com/d3m2m; the Kapalai photos were taken with the Olympus and the others were taken with the Sony on previous trips. None of these have been processed in Photoshop, but some have been cropped. This will sound silly, but due to an accident (user error!) I lost all the original files including the information about whether I used the flash and I only have compressed versions of most of the photos. Still, I think some Kapalai photos taken without the strobe were 150401 & 221847.

 

For the extreme close-up shots I didn't use the super macro mode, instead I was using normal AF mode with a close-up lens. These close-up shots all used the camera's internal flash; I attached a diffuser to the front of the housing to try to avoid having a shadow from the lens cover of the housing.

 

-David

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Dave,

 

I looked at your pics, and there look good. I can't believe that you didn't use the mirco for the close-up shots. The clown-fish is a great shot.

 

You said that you couldn't see the LCD in certain positions b/c of the rubber boot. Did you ever try to take the boot off to see if you could see the LCD screen from those different positions? I would think that the LCD screen should show up with less than 5m.

 

Great report. I'm getting that much closer to owning my own :)

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Just to clarify: the very-close shots used the external close-up lens in normal focus mode, the medium-close shots used the macro focus mode without any add-on lens.

 

I don't understand the optics of the close-up lens, which just allows closer focus. As I mentioned in a previous post, it will allow slightly greater magnificatoin than the super-macro mode because with the close-up lens I can still zoom in. Zoom is disabled in super-macro mode.

 

I have thought about taking off the rubber boot. However, it is part of the system which holds the camera securely in place in the housing, so I'd have to be pretty careful about modifying it. Perhaps I could just remove the top part, but I'm unwilling to try cutting it until I'm sure I can find a replacement part if necessary.

 

The two plastic channels on the outside of the housing are to attach an external continuationn of the black rubber boot. I haven't used this, but I imagine it could be useful for snorkelling (where glare from the sun could be a problem). These channels would block some part of the screen even without the top part of the rubber boot, but it should still be possible to see the screen from an angle so as to set up the shot confidently.

 

-David

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do you recall any of the settings you used to get these shots? were they in manual, A, P, or S modes? reason I'm asking is that I've just got one myself (first time with uw stills). thanks

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