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DSLR plunge...Seeking dome port advice

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After recently returning from a dive trip to Triton Bay and Raja Ampat, I have concluded that it is time to take the plunge, stop procrastinating, and purchase a DSLR. My P&S images from the trip were fair, but not good enough for travel to the other side of the planet. 2 questions, all feedback is welcome:

 

1) I have narrowed my decision down to the Nikon D300s and the Nikon D90 dSLRs. Cost aside, I have read that someone migrating from a P&S camera would be overwhelmed by the D300s, thus making the D90 a better choice. Do you agree with this statement or not?

 

2) I already own/use two Ikelite DS125 strobes, thus will be getting the Ikelite housing for either the Nikon D300s/Nikon D90.

For macro images, which lense should I purchase and what dome is this compatible with, and for "regular" underwater images what lense should I use and which is the compatible dome for this? Is there one Ikelite dome that can accommodate both lenses?

 

Thank you for taking the time to respond...

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Hmmm, some good questions.

 

I recently upgraded from a D80 and wanted more out of the camera, so I went the D300 route. However it is pretty heavy and fairly large. I think if I was in your shoes the D90 is plenty of camera for now. It has much the same sensor and video capabilities of the d300s in a smaller and lighter package.

 

As far as lenses, I would recommend the Tokina 10-17 or the Sigma 17-70 macro (for a more overall budget lens). The Nikon 60mm macro is the best solution. You can get away with the older AF-D quite nicely and find it used to save a $$. You don't really need manual focus with the 60mm.

 

Ikelite has 2 port systems, their standard ports and their modular ports. The modular ports are more expensive, but give more flexibility in the long run. You can see their port chart here.

 

Feel free to email me for a quote.

 

Jack

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After recently returning from a dive trip to Triton Bay and Raja Ampat, I have concluded that it is time to take the plunge, stop procrastinating, and purchase a DSLR. My P&S images from the trip were fair, but not good enough for travel to the other side of the planet. 2 questions, all feedback is welcome:

 

1) I have narrowed my decision down to the Nikon D300s and the Nikon D90 dSLRs. Cost aside, I have read that someone migrating from a P&S camera would be overwhelmed by the D300s, thus making the D90 a better choice. Do you agree with this statement or not?

 

Hi, I'm a complete newbie, but I have purchased a D300s, upgrading from my olympus C7070. I don't feel overwhelmed by the camera, just all the considerations for housings, ports etc.. I have been shooting manual with my C7070 for a year or so. I love the camera. Can't wait to take it diving.

 

I'm interested to hear what you decide.

 

Eleanor

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I was in the almost exact same position as you. I was using a G10 in a housing with dual strobes for a while and loved the camera, but decided it was time for an upgrade. Being pretty familiar with photography in general the D300s actually felt better in my hands, but thinking about it for underwater as well (I don't have the lux at the moment of having a dedicated body for above/underwater) the D90 fit the bill perfectly. Cheaper, smaller, lighter, same IQ as the D300, same video (passable at best), cheaper housings, all made the D90 the winner for me. Sure I love the D300/s 51 point autofocus and the weather sealed heavy duty body, but it just wasn't worth it for me.

 

Whichever you decide, they are both awesome cameras.

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Did you check the Canon field as well ??? I think the Canon Eos-500D or even the older Eos-450D make a perfect DSLR entry .... Couple them with a Tokina 10-17 FE zoom, a Canon 60mm macro and a Canon 250D close-up lens and you have your kit done !!!

 

All the best ..... Francesco

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for macro you use a flat port and for wide angel you use a dome, so no, i dont' think you can get a port for both. if you're dedicated to UW shooting a D90 is sufficient. I believe its the same sensor as the D300s. the difference is 51 vs 11 AF points, AF speed (not significant for UW), weather sealed body (not significant for UW) and slightly better ergonomics. D90 is smaller & lighter as will be the housing. If you plan to get into some serious topside photography, especially shooting action, i'd consider the D300s. Cheers,

 

Chris

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I have read that someone migrating from a P&S camera would be overwhelmed by the D300s, thus making the D90 a better choice. Do you agree with this statement or not?

Not true, the PROer a DSLR is the simpler/faster is it's operation in fact.

 

2)For macro images, which lense should I purchase and what dome is this compatible with, and for "regular" underwater images what lense should I use and which is the compatible dome for this? Is there one Ikelite dome that can accommodate both lenses?

Welcome to DSLR world, every lens should get it's own port.

Marco lenses should be used under flat ports, wide angles under domes. Choices are 60mm, 85mm and 105mm.

 

I would consider an aluminum housing...

Good Luck

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Thank you for taking the time to reply Mariozi, Undertow, frisco, bkkchriss4, scuba princess, and JackConnick.

All your advice is MUCH appreciated!!! The DSLR plunge is underway...

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