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Canon or Ikelite housing for G9

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I finally bought my Canon Powershot G9 Camera! Now its time to get a housing for it, and I need advice.

 

The Canon housing is rated at 40m. Can anyone tell me how representative is that rating of the cases's actual maximum depth?

 

Also, from a practical perspective, how big of a difference is there between the Canon and the Ikelite? I understand that I could attach stobesd to both housings.

 

Thanks

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I finally bought my Canon Powershot G9 Camera! Now its time to get a housing for it, and I need advice.

 

The Canon housing is rated at 40m. Can anyone tell me how representative is that rating of the cases's actual maximum depth?

 

Also, from a practical perspective, how big of a difference is there between the Canon and the Ikelite? I understand that I could attach stobesd to both housings.

 

Thanks

I don't know how to answer your first question. It's rating is based on testing they've done to reliably assure that the housing will work up to this depth. By working I mean that the housing will keep the camera dry and all the buttons & controls won't start to stick. If you go somewhat deeper with it, the camera will probably stay dry (to a certain point), but due to the excess pressure some controls may star having problems.

 

Yes you can use strobes with both housings. With the canon you're restricted to using optically triggered strobes that will slave off the camera's internal flash. With the Ike you can fire strobes using the G9's hotshoe. The advantages of using a wired connection over an optical one are better battery life of the camera (since you're not needing to recharge the flash), less heat inside the housing (will reduce fogging), and a greater selection of stobes in the market.

 

The main advantages to the Ike:

1. Threadded lens ports. Both of the ports are already threadded to accept add on lenses (wide anlge or macro). There are a few lens adapters that you can buy for the canon housing, but they'll cost extra.

2. Long & short lens ports. The short port will allow you to use wide angle addon lenses without vignetting (or at least greatly reduced). Granted the short port costs extra, the Canon doesn't offer this and wide angle lenses have been said to be "unusable" with them.

3. The flash bulkhead. This will allow you to fire strobes through the G9's hotshoe. If you get Ike strobes, then you can even use them in TTL.

4. It's an Ike. I've never used one, but from what I hear, their support & customer service is excellent.

 

The main advantages of the Canon:

1. It's much less expensive.

2. It's significantly more compact.

Edited by randini

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As an owner of both housings, I'd say you covered the details well.

 

I like owning both ... each has its time and place.

 

For scuba, the Ike is a great platform for the G9.

 

For video, snorkeling, skiing, beach, poolside and backup the Canon is a deal at $175.

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I have the Ikelite housing for the G7.. I hear that the Canon housing doesn't allow you to control the dial on the back which lets you adjust shutterspeed, aperture and exposure compensation etc.

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I have the Ikelite housing for the G7.. I hear that the Canon housing doesn't allow you to control the dial on the back which lets you adjust shutterspeed, aperture and exposure compensation etc.

Common misconception ... you CAN control the wheel, but you need to use two buttons at once.

 

You press and hold the "CUSTOM" button on the upper left corner and then you use the "LEFT" or "RIGHT" directional buttons to 'spin' the wheel.

 

I thought it was gonna be more of a pain than it actually is.

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I have the Canon housing. I was thinking about "upgrading" to the Patima housing because I would like better wideangle capability, but I really want to be able to do wideangle and macro on the same dive, and the Patima doesn't help with that.

 

I enjoy using my Inon strobe in TTL mode, so I don't want the Ike housing, plus it is larger than I want.

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I would like better wideangle capability, but I really want to be able to do wideangle and macro on the same dive, and the Patima doesn't help with that.

Sure you can ... you just take the Wide Angle adapter off and either shoot macro with just the camera lens or you can screw on a wet close up lens.

 

I don't have the Patima, but I do have the Ike which allows the same attachments. I shot both these shots on the same dive:

 

2617861794_1bc5db669e.jpg

 

2623417346_e8ea94dd6a.jpg

 

In this case, the mermaid was shot with the INON UWL-100 wide angle adapter and the macro was shot with the INON taken off. I could have put my INON close-up lens on for the macro shot ... if it hadn't been locked up in an office ... but that's a different story.

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Yes, but the Patima port for the wide angle requires the Canon lens to be locked in it's full wide position, somewhat limiting macro abilities. I believe that with the Ike short port you can still zoom a fair bit.

 

I don't know how well it would work to use a close-up lens with the lens at its widest.

 

I would love to find out that the Patima housing meets my needs better than I think it does......

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Yes, but the Patima port for the wide angle requires the Canon lens to be locked in it's full wide position, somewhat limiting macro abilities. I believe that with the Ike short port you can still zoom a fair bit.

 

I don't know how well it would work to use a close-up lens with the lens at its widest.

 

I would love to find out that the Patima housing meets my needs better than I think it does......

At the very widest lens setting (7mm), depending on how close the lens is to the port, you may get some vignetting.

 

I guess the Patima and the Ike are really different ... to use the INON wide-angle adapter I have to zoom just slightly to 9mm to get past the vignetting.

 

With two stacked INONs and the Ike, I have to zoom to 10.7mm (from 7mm) to get past the vingetting. I'm not sure where exactly I have to zoom to get past just one as whenever I've used just one it was at the same 10.7mm setting.

 

Interesting. If the Patima can be used with the wide-angle adapter and the camera at 7mm that is something to consider when ther G10 comes out ... hmmmm ....

 

I also hear lots of rumors that the G10 may go down to 28mm equivalent, but that is probably wishful thinking.

 

My #1 request would be a bigger 8-10MP CMOS instead of the existing 12MP CCD.

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I don't beleive there is much of a vignetting issue, from what I have heard. I think it is the physical size of the port and potential damage to the lens or port. The lens has no room to zoom on the short port.

 

There is always something new and better. I never have worried about having the newest, bestest camera. Unfortunately, for underwater use, there is that whole housing thing. I would hate to buy a $1,000.00 housing for a G9, only to find the camera discontinued in 60 or 90 days. If the camera gets lost, stolen, broken, I then have a housing for a camera I cannot replace, except maybe used, and a housing whose resale value can't be very good, since it is for a discontinued camera.

 

I am largely happy with the G9 and Canon housing, but wish the lens was wider. I don't actually feel the need for a close up adapter for what I do. I really enjoy having a compact setup with that housing and one Inon 240 strobe. Of course, there is that shutter-lag issue, but that's another discussion.

 

The sensor change would be nice, but for me the biggest issue is the lack of wide angle. If the new Canon does go to 28mm that would be tempting. If so, I doubt it would work in the Patima housing unless they came up with another port.

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I think it is the physical size of the port and potential damage to the lens or port.

 

You don't have to worry about damaging the lens or the port.

 

If you do zoom too far and hit the port the camera does an emergency shutdown. No damage is caused to lens or port, and all you have to do is turn the camera back on.

 

I know ideally you would want to be able to zoom with the macro lenses on, but if there is no vingetting with it attached to the short port it isn't useless and you can likely do some pretty good macro - you'll just have to get real close.

 

I wish I had known about the Patima ... seems like a nice option.

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You don't have to worry about damaging the lens or the port.

 

If you do zoom too far and hit the port the camera does an emergency shutdown. No damage is caused to lens or port, and all you have to do is turn the camera back on.

 

I know ideally you would want to be able to zoom with the macro lenses on, but if there is no vingetting with it attached to the short port it isn't useless and you can likely do some pretty good macro - you'll just have to get real close.

 

I wish I had known about the Patima ... seems like a nice option.

 

The Patima housing comes with a zoom control lock, which essentially a screw you thread into place which blocks the zoom control, so it eliminates any accidental zooming while using the wide angle port. If you did not use that lock, the lens would hit the port very easily, because there really isn't much room for zooming when using the short port. However, I have not found that to be an impediment at all, because taking wide angle shots is something I generally did without zooming with my other similar system, plus it gets you into the habit of getting closer, rather than relying on zooming.

 

Here's a shots I took last weekend in Key Largo on the Wreck of the Spiegel Grove with the short port and the Inon Wide Angle Convesion Lens. The visibilty was not spectacular that day, but with the wide angle lens and the G9 fully zoomed out, I was able to get close enough to still make the pictures relatively viewable.

 

Invade_The_Keys_-_Topside_07-12-2008_013aa.jpg

 

Invade_The_Keys_07-12-2008_003a.jpg

 

Adrian

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Price aside, the Patima would seem a better choice than the Ike for wide-angle on the G9 for two related reasons:

 

>> You get to use a wide angle adapter with the lens at 7mm (wide open) as opposed to 9mm on the Ike

 

>> You get the lens closer to the adapter and I think are getting sharper corners than the Ike

 

Might you have more you can post with good "stuff" in the corners to judge sharpness?

 

Here's an example of the soft corners with the INON UWL-100 on the Ike with the lens at 9mm:

 

2622720959_4b15739cf0_b.jpg

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I enjoy using my Inon strobe in TTL mode, so I don't want the Ike housing, plus it is larger than I want.

You could likely still do that I think. The Ike comes with both a strobe diffuser and a strobe mask. You could probably get the Optical TTL going with the Ike either by using the default mask, buying a different commercial solution or making one yourself.

 

Larger ... not much to be done there. The Patima does look nice and small. The Ike is big relative to the camera itself, but is by no means awkward underwater.

 

I am seriously thinking about dumping my Ike and getting a Patima ... looks like a really great housing.

Edited by jeremypayne

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You could likely still do that I think. The Ike comes with both a strobe diffuser and a strobe mask. You could probably get the Optical TTL going with the Ike either by using the default mask, buying a different commercial solution or making one yourself.

 

Larger ... not much to be done there. The Patima does look nice and small. The Ike is big relative to the camera itself, but is by no means awkward underwater.

 

I am seriously thinking about dumping my Ike and getting a Patima ... looks like a really great housing.

 

WEll, If you dump your IKE, dump it my way. I have the G9 and OEM housing and would like to try the IKE. NOW, remember, you said DUMP.. next thing you know.. you will come asking for money for it !

 

:-)

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WEll, If you dump your IKE, dump it my way. I have the G9 and OEM housing and would like to try the IKE. NOW, remember, you said DUMP.. next thing you know.. you will come asking for money for it !

 

:-)

Let me sleep on it ...

 

If I did sell :) it, I would want to sell the housing, short port, handle balls and double tray together.

 

I'd also have an Ikelite to Sea & Sea electrical sync cord, arm set and YS-27dx strobe I'd probably want to/be willing to sell.

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The Patima does look nice, though I have to question whether the relatively high price is disproportionate to the camera...

 

In truth, I like the Ike. Its user servicable and spares are readily available globally. Its simplicity, lo-tech construction, flat surfaces and generous dimensions lend themselves to customisation and improvement i.e. a mount for attaching the fibre optics, replacing the plastic sun shade with a better one made from aluminum, fitting a flood alarm and installing a viewing mirror allowing me to frame a shot from overhead - useful for upward pointing macro shots. I probably havn't finishe yet, but then I'm a tinkerer...

Edited by Timmoranuk

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As I mentioned, I don't have one, so I am only relying on what I have read and heard, but to me the weakness of the Patima housing is that with the short port on for use with the Inon UWL 100, one can't just remove the wet lens and do macro photography, because the lens is stuck in its widest position, whether due to the lock or the physical limitation imposed by the port. On the other hand, the very short port probably produces superior wide angle shots compared to the Ike. That shot above is very nice, but the soft corner in the lower right would bother me.

 

I gather this isn't an issue for many people, they simply plan to shoot wide OR macro on a dive. I really want to be able to do both. I suppose that is why I keep toying with getting a DSLR, but I don't want to give up using the LCD to compose and focus.

 

Although the Patima seems very expensive compared to the camera, and my first thought was that no one would pay $1000 to house a compact camera, $3000.00 housings with $500 ports seem to sell quite readily for cameras that cost less than a grand, so that would make a $1k housing (including ports) on a $400-500 camera pretty reasonable.

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I gather this isn't an issue for many people, they simply plan to shoot wide OR macro on a dive. I really want to be able to do both. I suppose that is why I keep toying with getting a DSLR, but I don't want to give up using the LCD to compose and focus.

 

Not sure why you think a DSLR will give you MORE ability to shoot both WA and macro on a dive. :) Having used housed compact cameras and more recently - for the past 4-5 years - housed DSLRs, I can tell you that a compact like the G9 gives you WAY more ability to shoot both WA and macro on the same dive.

 

If you switch to DSLR, you'll probably (no absolutes) find that you have to choose one or the other (WA or macro) for a given dive in order to get the best results. I haven't seen ANY DSLR lens that lets you shoot true WA and true macro on the same dive. You can get good macro with "sort of" wide angle, or wide angle with "sort of" macro, but not great wide angle AND great macro capabilities on the same dive.

 

Most of the pros here on Wetpixel (and elsewhere) who use DSLRs make a choice on each dive - EITHER macro or WA. They'd rather risk missing a great shot (e.g., a whale shark swims by while they're shooting nudi's!) in order to use their BEST macro lens or best WA lens to get one or two really great shots on that dive. I'm not a pro, but my "good" (IMO) shots run consistently around 1% of the shots taken. IOW, I'm delighted if I get one truly good shot on a dive where I've shot 50-100.

 

One of the reasons I just bought a G9 is so that (in cases where I don't want to deal with my big DSLR rig) I have a reasonable chance of shooting macro, some video, and some fish/mid-wide angle stuff - all on the same dive. No DSLR I know of gives you all that flexibility!

 

Afterthought edit: It just occurred to me that you might be planning to take both your G9 and DSLR on a given dive. In that case, you could shoot both WA and macro (e.g., use a WA lens on the DSLR, and plan on using the G9 for macro). If that's the case, then yes, getting a DSLR would give you the capability to do both.

Edited by bmyates

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I could certainly be wrong about this, but I assume that an Olympus E520 with the 14 -42 (28-84), 14-54 or 12-60 zoom would give me "decent" wide angle along with macro using just one port. Athena makes a dome port for the 14-42 that pretty much keeps the wide angle perspective on that end.

 

Not the best WA or macro, perhaps, but a true 28mm perspective is much better much better than the G9 without a wet lens, I think. if I am wrong, please educate me....I am not claiming to have the answer.

 

Although I can see the merits of it, photographically speaking, I can't see dealing with two cameras on a dive.

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I could certainly be wrong about this, but I assume that an Olympus E520 with the 14 -42 (28-84), 14-54 or 12-60 zoom would give me "decent" wide angle along with macro using just one port...

 

I don't want this to turn into a discussion of the technical merits/limitations of specific non-G9 equipment, but the Oly lenses you mention actually prove my point:

 

Here is the maximum magnification of each:

14-54: Maximum image magnification = 0.26x (0.52x:35mm equivalent)

14-42: Maximum image magnification = 0.19x (0.38x)

12-60: Maximum image magnification = 0.28x (0.56x)

 

Ideal macro lenses can shoot 1:1 (meaning the subject is large enough in the frame to be "lifesize"). If you check the specs on a true macro lens, such as the Oly 35 or 105 macro, you see that it is:

"Maximum image magnification = 1.0x (2.0x:35mm equivalent)".

In practical terms, that means you can get a goby to fill about four times as much of the frame as with any of those three zoom lenses you mentioned.

 

My point is simply that, while you CAN shoot "macro" with a lens that will also shoot WA, it is - on average - going to produce far more "so-so" macro photos than if you swapped ports and used a true 1:1 macro lens. So if you really want to get "great" macro or WA shots, you're probably going to want to choose on each dive EITHER a good WA lens (like the three you mention, all of which would also be good fish lenses) OR a true macro lens (ideally with 1:1 capability like the 105 or 35, the latter also being a good fish lens) but that won't let you shoot really wide angle stuff.

 

You can certainly get a "Jack of all trades/master of none" lens that "sort of" lets you shoot both WA and macro, but I'm yet to see DSLR equipment - at any price - that really gives you the best of both worlds from one lens on one dive...

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Your information raises some more questions in my mind, but you are right, I unintentionally sort of hijacked the thread so I guess I will save them for another time. Thanks for your input thus far.

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