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JJohn

Help selecting camera, please.

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Hi,

 

I am sorry if this type of question gets asked often. I am going on a trip to Hawaii and would like to try to do some UW photography. I am a published wildlife photographer (birds mostly) so I care about image quality but, I am only looking to have some fun, not publish or compete. Maybe I'll print a couple 8X10's if I get anything good, so that sets a bar on image quality. I only dive once every other year or so, therefore a housing for my SLR doesn't seem like a good use of money. I was thinking that for something around $600, I good get a compact and a decent housing. I wanted a compact for kid snaps anyway.

 

Any advice on what to get? So far the Fuji E900, F31, F40, and Nikon P5000 with an Ikelite housing seems like my best options.

 

Can I get okay results without an external flash?

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Please help me pick a decent setup. Have I missed any inexpensive SLR options?

 

I will do mostly (or all) snorkeling. Shallow water (< 10 meters). Subjects include turtles, my kids' first attempts at free diving, butterfly and trigger fish, moray eels, manta rays (last time had a great close encounter), and anything else that looks good. I tried a cheap film camera last time and although I had fun, the pictures were dissapointing.

 

For the subjects I listed, should I also invest in a WA adaptor lens. I will probably more wide angle than macro.

 

Thanks in advance for any and all help,

John

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Hi John,

Alex Mustard just did a review of the F40 and I'd have to say for shallow water, with a magic filter he really got some good pics. The E900 has been thoroughly test underwater and has great reviews among its users.

I don't think it matters a great deal about which camera you select however your housing is important. Inon makes adapters for several camera housings and their bayonet style mount for WA adapter lenses is unbeatable. Screw on lenses (I own them ) are a pain to use and if I had the choice again it would definitely be the bayonet style mount. I wouldn't buy a housing that didn't support this bayonet style mount.

Secondly, there is a great little filter out there for shallow water diving, freediving etc called the magic filter. That, with a WA lens, would be the two items I'd purchase.

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I've just purchased a Canon A640 in an Ikelite housing, I have not had much chance to try out except in cold water and poor vis but it seems like it would to the job tropically, advantages are, full manual control and if you want to use a hack, RAW. nice little camera for above water as well. You might also consider the Canon housing for it but I prefer the Ikelite, since you can't add a WA lens to the Canon that would probably be a deal breaker for you.

 

KLW

Edited by kerryw

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I've just purchased a Canon A640 in an Ikelite housing, I have not had much chance to try out except in cold water and poor vis but it seems like it would to the job tropically, advantages are, full manual control and if you want to use a hack, RAW. nice little camera for above water as well. You might also consider the Canon housing for it but I prefer the Ikelite, since you can't add a WA lens to the Canon that would probably be a deal breaker for you.

 

KLW

 

 

The ability to shoot RAW like I do topside is the reason I was looking at the Fuji E900. I will research the Canon RAW hack. Thanks.

 

Thank you also for the advice on bayonet vs screw mount for the WA and the magic filter.

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