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Hi guys, I am going to be diving the Red Sea and Zanzibar this summer and just bought my first strobe from backscatter! They claim it "can be used for all applications from wide-angle to macro photography"..

 

However, I thought the arm really doesn't get the strobe too far from where my flash is:

 

strobe.jpg

 

Also, though the site said the Sea & Sea mask worked with this housing, it doesn't fit... I will have to maybe saw through the metal ring the cable connects to fitting..

 

So do I now buy an extender to attach to this arm? I don't want to get to Egypt and realize that I need something.

 

Do you think this will work?

 

CE

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I'd give the boys and girls at Backscatter a call and ask them how it fits. Is the Sea & Sea mask you have the one that needs to be cut to fit? They may have a slick way to do it you haven't tried yet. Just guessing.

 

I'd call them before I started cutting metal.

 

I don't think that model from S&S has an extension available but I've been wrong before. If it doesn't you can still take some nice images by careful strobe pointing. Play with it in the pool and try pointing the strobe off axis from the subject so so don't light up all the water between the lens and the mermaid. Use the edge of the light cone to illuminate your subject. You can get away with very short arms using that technique.

 

Cheers,

Steve

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On most occasions now I have taken Alex M's advice and use only one arm length per strobe. Usually this is a single 6 inch length and I use (and openly admit to having a commercial interest in providing) StiX arms with integrated large or Jumbo floats. I personally find them very lightweight and good providers of buoyancy and, as a modular system, floats can be added or removed to suit different setups.

 

There are occasions where I find two arm segments are useful, when lighting large areas (the rabbit ears technique as Julian C and Alex M call it).

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I recently purchased a set of StiX (two six inch and two nine inch) arms with floats from Alex. They seem to be very well made and are very light. I haven´t tried them in water yet, but I look forward to try them out.

 

regards

 

Bent C

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There are new arms made of carbon fiber, which are lighter than the conventional arms and also positively buoyant. The Aqua-Foto Team division, H20 Sales, makes them and they are coming out with even bigger float arms that are lighter than aluminum ones.

Read a little about them here:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/wp/livelook/3972/P2/

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Thanks Drew,

 

You get them here :

 

http://www.aditech-uw.com/en/shop/1268-h2o-bjb-29x210.html

 

I am going in for 4x8" ones very soon for the new 7D system i am going in for. Look really nice.

 

Cheers,

 

Diggy

 

There are new arms made of carbon fiber, which are lighter than the conventional arms and also positively buoyant. The Aqua-Foto Team division, H20 Sales, makes them and they are coming out with even bigger float arms that are lighter than aluminum ones.

Read a little about them here:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/wp/livelook/3972/P2/

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Diggy those are made of Aluminum. The Carbon fiber ones weigh more than half of aluminum arms and have more buoyancy. I'll be reviewing them in this month.

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How are trays with dual handles used with a compact camera, like in

the Ikelite example earlier in this thread?

 

At least my right hand is busy with the housing so I don't see quite how I should use both handles during shooting other

than for transportation, but what am I missing since this seems to be the default setup?

 

What could be a good dual WA strobe combination with only left handle?

 

Handle and a 5" + 8" on the left + just ball + two 8" on the right? Or is it better to go symmetrical with dual handles?

 

Is it good for flexibility to have a ball-joint next to the strobe or is it good enough with an arm that ends in a direct YS-connector?

 

Cheers

/O

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Which arms and clamps do you consider to be the best quality? Nauticam, ULCS or TLS?

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When setting up your housing with handles and arms do you hold the housing itself on the RHS to trigger the photos or do you hold the handle and reach across?

 

I have a Nauticam hosuing (NEx7) and Flexitray with Nauticam handles

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Ideally the tray and handles should suit the camera housing so that at least the main controls(Shutter, Aperture and Shutter Speed)

can be accessed easily when holding the handle. Some housings have the option of a strap for secure one handed shooting.

 

A lot of people use the ULCS arms, you can also attach Stix floats to the ULCS arms(may even suit the Nauticam?).

 

Cheers,

Jim.

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What about arm lengths for reasonably versatile set-ups? I've been mostly shooting macro with a compact and will now upgrade to an om-d with the 12-50mm and a Subsee +5. This means I will be doing several types of shooting: semi-wa and diver portraits (as wide as the 12mm will allow me behind a flat port), mid-range shooting for instance fish portraits and also some macro at 50mm with the Subsee. I was thinking for each arm either 2 x 7" or 1 x 5" + 1 x 7" (my supplier stocks 5", 7" and 9" arms). Does either of these two set-ups look alright or should i opt for something else?

 

Many thanks

Edited by linder

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I am using Inon floating arms 10" and 8"

It looks like that, but there are also floating arms which looks similar but are made from carbon fiber. You can find on Nauticam and other brands

http://nauticam.com/product-list-cs.asp?id=15&sid=21

 

 

1235145_683117741717002_435115423_n.jpg

 

 

Once upon a time I was looking for a new solution and prepared something like that :) :) :) not too much useful :P

 

942398_648454515183325_103978867_n.jpg

Edited by TomekP

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What would be the consensus for a rx100ii in a Nauticam housig, mostly for WA? Still 2x5 and 2x8? I'm asking because I suspect that the initial responses were for SLRs.

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I'm currently using 2 8" arms per side (1 Inon Mega float arm, and 1 inon 8" arm per side). Would it be better to swap the 8" std arm for a 5"? I prefer the option of 2 joint arms, as I can more easily position the strobes in close for macro however. (This is with S95 and Wide angle Lens/Dome or macro wet lense. UK diving though not blue water.

Edited by smk82

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I'm currently using 2 8" arms per side (1 Inon Mega float arm, and 1 inon 8" arm per side). Would it be better to swap the 8" std arm for a 5"? I prefer the option of 2 joint arms, as I can more easily position the strobes in close for macro however.

 

Two 5" arms would be a nice set-up for macrophotography, but difficult to reposition properly when shooting in portrait. Two 8" are a bit unwieldy, but you can put the strobe anywhere and the arm works for wide-angle. I've compromised on 2 x (8" + 5") when travelling light, adding other segments (10" for wide angle, 5" for macro) if I'm not limited by excess baggage.

 

The other thing I have are ball joints on the housing that I use for macro, and on the handles for wide-angle. I have tried taking one arm off to shoot macro portraits (a suggestion from an eminent luminary of the dark art of lighting underwater photographs), allowing me to get that little bit lower beneath the subject..

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I am using Inon floating arms 10" and 8"

It looks like that, but there are also floating arms which looks similar but are made from carbon fiber. You can find on Nauticam and other brands

http://nauticam.com/product-list-cs.asp?id=15&sid=21

 

 

1235145_683117741717002_435115423_n.jpg

 

 

Once upon a time I was looking for a new solution and prepared something like that :) :) :) not too much useful :P

 

942398_648454515183325_103978867_n.jpg

How long were the fibre optic cables in that shot? I currently have the std 43cm long ones and they are just..just long enough... I need to replace them with longer ones but unsure between the 68cm and the 110cm...

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How long were the fibre optic cables in that shot? I currently have the std 43cm long ones and they are just..just long enough... I need to replace them with longer ones but unsure between the 68cm and the 110cm...

There is not much difference between a 5+8 and a 8+8 we are talking about 2.1 inches or 5.3 cm more shooting distance for the longer arms if you have a strobe with 110 degrees coverage and 3 inches for a strobe with 90 degree coverage

 

I am not sure who came out with the idea that 5+5 is macro and 5+8 is wide angle that is just ludicrous

 

It is all a matter of subject distance the further away the subject the longer the arms. If all you shoot is closer than half a meter even two 3" segments are sufficient

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UK diving though not blue water.

 

 

I cannot see myself using more than 8 inch on each side for wide angle and close up photography in UK and even in blue water, unless shooting something unusual or experiment different technique.

I do not think that additional arm, 5 or 8 inch will give you far better outcome. It is the position of your strobes and their output which makes the big difference.

Some examples I took in UK, all shot using 2 Nikonos SB105 on 8 inch arms:

 

 

1393773147_bib_fish_2.jpg

 

1392368126_north_sea.jpg

 

1393796669_sturgeon_fish.jpg

Edited by scuba_d
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3ysetyde.jpg

 

I've been liking the longer arms (you can always adjust them to be in closer).

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3ysetyde.jpg

 

 

 

I can't help but think that you have missed the point somewhere...

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In the end there is no one solution. There are times when long arms are essential and times when no arms at all are best (to stop the damn things getting in the way!).

 

Here is a photo of my rig on normal wide angle shooting. But there are times I wish for longer arms, and times I wish for shorter.

post-713-0-66111200-1406709011_thumb.jpg

 

I have taken arm sections off underwater (a pain when they have buoyancy on them) and also times when I have put all the arms on one side to get a strobe where I want.

 

post-713-0-76450700-1406709105_thumb.jpg

 

And there are shots that are best taken with no strobe arms at all. For this dive (as I usually do for WAM shooting) I went in the water with the strobe attached directly to the housing (no arms), while shooting with a fisheye.

 

post-713-0-79356800-1406709286_thumb.jpg

 

The main controller on required strobe arm length is camera to subject distance. Not lens. Not particularly conditions.

 

Alex

 

 

 

 

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I worked out an approximate equation for strobe arm length and closer subject distance based on the strobe beam angle. The wider the strobe longer the arms, if you shoot in very clear water without suspended particles though you could get away with much shorter arms without backscatter. Some people think than pointing the strobes outward can help with short arms by actually you are reducing the area fully lit and also progressively pointing the strobes more straight to the lens which means back scatter again. Even with two 16" segments your closest point is between 80 cm and 1.1 meters not really going that far distance

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