Jump to content
freediver

Which Type of housing - & why?

Recommended Posts

I may be opening a can of worms here, but since this seems to be the place for shooting digital underwater - I thought I would go ahead and ask.

 

I read someplace else here in the forums that the type of housing doesn't make your photo's any better or worse.

 

If that is the case - why is it so many more or less appear to mortgage their lives away for the high end aluminum housings as opposed to more boxy type plex housings?

 

Other than the fact that the aluminum housings can witshtad greater pressures, what other reasons are there? I am having a difficult time justifying the cost of one of thse works of art, but the tech-geek side of me knows there is more to it than just looks. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have a lovely aluminium housing, but folks who do indicate that ergonomics are a big factor in their decision to - as you put it - mortgage their lives away. :D

 

Another factor is port flexibility (ie., use of extension tubes to minimise the number of ports carried to fit multiple lenses). Particularly important with reduced baggage limits.

 

Also, some housings (Subal and Seacam in particular) offer superb external viewfinder magnifiers which (at a cost of more than some housings) offer an unmatched view of what the lens is seeing.

 

I would think that pressure resistance would only be factor for a small number of very deep divers. After all, the Ike's go to 60m which to me would seem sufficient for a majority of dives I would ever contemplate.

 

FWIW, Ike has indicated that he is preparing extension system (for release in '06) which may provide similar functionality/flexibility to aluminium counterparts in terms of lens choices.

 

Finally, a good photographer behind any camera/housing will make better shots than a bad one. So technique is often the biggest impediment to image quality. Conversely, all things being equal, it may be that a marginal improvement in ergonomics/viewfinder may mean the difference between getting THE shot and not quite nailing it. If you think your technique is up to snuff and you've got the cashola, then don't feel bad about dropping it on something beautiful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you will find a range of opinions on this one, but not many people have really lived with both kinds and therefore there is often a lack of objectivity!

 

(EDIT: I posted at the same time as Anthony (above) and my comment is not directed at him!)

 

This one comes up quite a lot and here are a couple of recent threads worth reading:

 

http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=10656

http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=10702

 

Alex

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The issue I am running into of course is justifying the cost of a metal housing. Been researching all day and I feel my wallet tremble every time I visit the sites for Seacam, Subal, hugyfot, Nexus...

 

The bulk of my budget is going into my gear:

2-D70s bodies

1 - 10.5mm Nikkor Fisheye

1 - 18-70 ED (stock on one of the D70's)

1 - 70-210D f/4-5.6 (read it is a killer piece of glass for the price)

2 - Digipower Vertical grip battery pack

1 - SB-600

2 - 1GB CF cards

 

I am now left with the housing dilemma - for what I have left - it's either the Fantasea or Ike housing. Ike is well known, but pricing it out, for just the housing, I can get the Fantasea with a dome port. But am I giving up something by not going with the Ikelite???

 

If all goes according to plan - next week, Xmas comes early.. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems all of you are missing the point here...

 

Anyone will tell you (except Ike), Chicks dig aluminum! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You guys dive with a lot of single chicks on a normal basis to impress with the fancy housings?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Man! If you had a Seacam those three would be topless! :D:P;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have indeed used both Ikelite and Subal and Sea and Sea (half Al half plastic) housings in the past. When it came time to buy a 20D housing the real choices were Subal and Ikelite. At that time the biggest factors for me were how comfortable I was under the water with the various housings and to my hands the Subal was easier to use than the Ike and both were much easier (10D) than the Sea and Sea. One big factor for me was that the Subal has glass domes and the Ike had only plastic. I know that you can get good pics with both, but plastic is always scratched and I have never scratched a glass dome. Second factor was the ability to use extension rings and ports with different lenses. This was probably the second most important factor for me. Finally there were lots of different issues like the fact that at the time the Ike sync cord came straight back and was usually broken. Also the Inon ringflash could fit on the subal not on the Ike.

 

Would I do it the same again, I don't know, many of the perceived deficiencies of the Ikelite have been rectified like the sync cord arrangement and the ergonomics are better and you can get e-ttl (although you can get this with Subal from Matthias if you want. If I were only going to shoot macro, and wanted ttl I certainly would buy the Ike housing, if I were going to do lots of wide angle I would certainly go with a glass port.

 

As for chicks, all of the women I dive with are married to friends of mine and my wife can beat me up so that is not a consideration. I think I can get better pics with the Subal now because it handles well and has the great viewfinder but that is only one opinion.

BVA

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It seems all of you are missing the point here...

 

Anyone will tell you (except Ike), Chicks dig aluminum!  :D

 

There's something to be said for see-thru . You just have to present it right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There's something to be said for see-thru . You just have to present it right.

 

That's exactly what I think too... It is not the camera (or housing) it is the photographer behind it that takes the pics (and attracts the chicks)! :D:P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Many a post as covered or uncovered the fact of petrolium issued housing (Lexan, Plastic, etc.) versus eletrical/bauxite issued housing (aluminium), the organic based issue apart (Chicks), comfort is a tangible thing to consider and how much one is willing to be accountable for it also. I let whom has the pocket book decide on these very emotional issues. I let the editors, photo contest judges and peers judge my talent, for this, there is no point in what was used but only how it was used.

 

But really, take a look at the whole picture. what you need, what you want, what you dream of, then add it up. then compare, there is a reason why all of these manufacturers are prosper. Budget and passion, where do you fit in !

 

cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also when looking at a housing, look at your workflow on a typical dive day/trip. Do you like the ergonimics of how it feels in the water, do you like where the strobe bulkhead is (that one got me away from a particular housing). How does it come apart for how you want to change your system between dives, get at your cf card or connector to download pics. Does all of that fit into your way of working.

 

I just spent a week with my Aquatica housing for my D70 on a liveaboard and absolutley loved it. What became evident to me very quickly was how easy it was for me to change things between dives. That workflow. The fact that I pulled the back off the housing and I could pull my card out easily and slap in my other card, format it using the controls of the camera and put the back back on the housing. Then as my newly shot card was transfering images to my computer I could easily change out lenses/ports and still have time for a nap before the next dive.

 

What a fun thing it is that we do!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are some usage considerations also - the 60m limit on a polycarbonate housing is fairly limiting for some divers. Furthermore, if you do much freediving, ergonomics are even more important - it's much easier to swim with my aquatica or the subals i've used than it is to swim with my Se& Sea dx-30/60 (which is larger than some ike housings, but not by much).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There are some usage considerations also - the 60m limit on a polycarbonate housing is fairly limiting for some divers. Furthermore, if you do much freediving, ergonomics are even more important - it's much easier to swim with my aquatica or the subals i've used than it is to swim with my Se& Sea dx-30/60 (which is larger than some ike housings, but not by much).

 

Brian - you do raise an important point regarding freediving - I am a certified freedive instructor (trained and certified as a level III instructor by Pipin Ferrarras back in 2003 and been a writer on the sport for a number of years). Freediving is my preferred type of diving and will be putting more time into it - possibly to compete at the nationals for a position on the US team for Worlds in Cairo Egypt later in 2006. Want to focus on doing alot of freedive imaging.

 

This was one of my biggest reasons for looking at PS digitals - they are much smaller and the Inon lens I currently have for my C3000's and Olympus housing is one of the sharpest pieces of glass I have ever come across. But it appears that many feel the image quality isn't sufficient to hold up going to press or to be used for stock work.

 

I shot the attached images while doing a story on the Performance Freedive Clinics that Kirk Krack Heads up and shot these with my old Oly C2000's - They went to Spearfishing Magazine and they ended up using 7 images from that assignment.

 

Which now has me wondering if I shouldn't use the D70's above water and go with a 5060 underwater.. :D

post-585-1133552848_thumb.jpg

post-585-1133553040_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would recomend you PM or email wetpixel memember Lambis He shoots a lot of freediving with a D70 in a nexus housing. Check out his most recent picutres here

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WELL!!!!!!!! we are all missing the point, get a housing you can

afford, & get under the blue stuff & take some pics, it does not

matter if its aluminium or plastic. Be proud of what you use,

because all of the equipment is expensive & the longer you

leave it the more you will miss.

 

Andy

 

:ph34r: :D :ph34r: :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would recomend you PM or email wetpixel memember Lambis  He shoots a lot of freediving with a D70 in a nexus housing.  Check out his most recent picutres here

 

I just reviewed his work - stunning images needless to say!

 

I have PM'd him and want to say thanks for the link :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was all set to purchase the Fantasea housing and dome port - then got an email saying their domeport doesn't work with the 10.5mm Nikkor lens

 

Looks like I have to wait to afford the Ikelite.. :huh:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Molder promises to start producing "Da Bigga Doma" Friday. Seeing is believing since this project has left me between heart attach, hemorrhoid, and hernia. Shipping, assembly and testing should make ports available in January finally.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Molder promises to start producing "Da Bigga Doma" Friday.  Seeing is believing since this project has left me between heart attach, hemorrhoid, and hernia.  Shipping, assembly and testing should make ports available in January finally.

Great news ike!!

 

Is this the kind of setup that would allow use of 10.5 and 12-24 Nikkor under one dome?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To get back to the original question - try rephrasing it as "what sort of car do you drive and why?". Most seem to go from A to B but your choice is probably based on rather more factors than it being mere transport (mind you, speaking as someone who has never washed his car since new (3 years now), I'm probably asking this as a pretty disinterested party - and before you ask, yes my camera gear is worth (a lot) more than the car).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I currently shoot a D2X in a Subal and a CP 8400 in an Ike. I think they are both very good. If I thought Ike could have squeezed the D2X into his dSLR housing I would have thought about it very carefully.

 

I do have to say for my aging eyes the magnified viewfinder is the "bomb"

 

I also like the ability to use extension rings with my dome port to that it can be adapted to different lenses.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sponsors

Advertisements



×
×
  • Create New...