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MitHere

Noob for Strobes

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Hi guys,

 

I am buying the WP-DC34 UW housing for my Canon G11 and am thinking about strobes. Problem is, I don't know bugger all about them - people say (From this link http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/strobes-l...34-housing.html) you need a slave strobe, fibre optics etc...

- What the heck is a slave?

- Why do I need fibre optics?

- Does a strobe give you the nice glossy prints you see in magazines?

- To attach a strobe to my DC34 case, what things would I need exactly? Arm? Cable?

- I read something about changing aperture to match distance etc...

- Does the camera sychronise with the strobe or do you have to start being very smart with the way you take photographs?

- People talk about Inons, Sea&Sea but they do seem to be very expensive - I want a strobe that doesn't break the bank (Strobes that are expensive in the US are even worse here in New Zealand!!!) and I was looking at the Intova ISTR ISS 2000 (http://www.intova.net/strobekit.html, http://www.te.co.nz/Electronic-Cameras/Cam...dId-5689036.htm)... Has anyone used that? Do you think it's any good? I think I mainly will want to do macro photography but I could be convinced otherwise ;)

So basically, anything you can tell me about strobes would be very helpful ;)

Edited by MitHere

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I am buying the WP-DC34 UW housing for my Canon G11 and am thinking about strobes. Problem is, I don't know bugger all about them - people say (From this link http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/strobes-l...34-housing.html) you need a slave strobe, fibre optics etc...

- What the heck is a slave?

 

Hi,

 

I'll make an attempt to answer some of your questions although I will admit I'm not real familiar with that particular housing and camera. A slave strobe fires from a signal from another strobe. In other words, it will go off after another strobe, or the camera's flash, goes off. This is one way, but not the only way, to make a strobe fire.

 

- Why do I need fibre optics?

 

Fiber optics is one way of making the strobe fire without it being hard wired to the housing/camera. It is less prone to failure (e.g. flooding) than using a hard wired electrical connection.

 

- Does a strobe give you the nice glossy prints you see in magazines?

 

That is a hard question to answer! I would say "sometimes". But getting nice glossy prints requires so much more than just using a strobe. There are many, many things that go into making "nice glossy prints you see in magazines". Your chance of producing a print like you see in a magazine is MORE LIKELY achieved when using a strobe (or two strobes, as many are shot using two strobes) but it is not absolutely essential.

 

 

To attach a strobe to my DC34 case, what things would I need exactly? Arm? Cable?

 

I'll leave that one to others more familiar with that setup.

 

- I read something about changing aperture to match distance etc...

 

Hmm, I'm going to guess you are referring to what's known as "depth of field" though I could be wrong. Could you be more specific?

 

-

Does the camera sychronise with the strobe or do you have to start being very smart with the way you take photographs

 

All I can say is that if you have to be very smart with the way you take photographs, I would not be able to take any photographs ;) But seriously the camera connects with the strobe usually by either a hard wired electrical connection (e.g. cables) or by fiber optic connection. As mentioned earlier, they can also be fired in slave mode.

 

-

People talk about Inons, Sea&Sea but they do seem to be very expensive - I want a strobe that doesn't break the bank (Strobes that are expensive in the US are even worse here in New Zealand!!!) and I was looking at the Intova ISTR ISS 2000 (http://www.intova.net/strobekit.html, http://www.te.co.nz/Electronic-Cameras/Cam...dId-5689036.htm)... Has anyone used that? Do you think it's any good?

 

I am not familiar with the strobe you mention but perhaps someone else here will jump in with some information.

 

I recommend that you get the book The Underwater Photographer by Martin Edge. The Third Edition has been out for some time but the Fourth Edition has just come out and I understand it is shipping now.

 

Also, you might want to give Reef Photo and Video a call. They are one of the sponsors of this site and they can provide answers to all of you questions. They are a great source of information and many on this forum use them for all their underwater needs.

 

Above all, feel free to ask additional questions as they come up.

 

Cheers,

 

Ellen

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Hi,

 

I'll make an attempt to answer some of your questions although I will admit I'm not real familiar with that particular housing and camera. A slave strobe fires from a signal from another strobe. In other words, it will go off after another strobe, or the camera's flash, goes off. This is one way, but not the only way, to make a strobe fire.

 

 

 

Fiber optics is one way of making the strobe fire without it being hard wired to the housing/camera. It is less prone to failure (e.g. flooding) than using a hard wired electrical connection.

 

 

 

That is a hard question to answer! I would say "sometimes". But getting nice glossy prints requires so much more than just using a strobe. There are many, many things that go into making "nice glossy prints you see in magazines". Your chance of producing a print like you see in a magazine is MORE LIKELY achieved when using a strobe (or two strobes, as many are shot using two strobes) but it is not absolutely essential.

 

 

 

 

I'll leave that one to others more familiar with that setup.

 

 

 

Hmm, I'm going to guess you are referring to what's known as "depth of field" though I could be wrong. Could you be more specific?

 

-

 

All I can say is that if you have to be very smart with the way you take photographs, I would not be able to take any photographs ;) But seriously the camera connects with the strobe usually by either a hard wired electrical connection (e.g. cables) or by fiber optic connection. As mentioned earlier, they can also be fired in slave mode.

 

-

 

I am not familiar with the strobe you mention but perhaps someone else here will jump in with some information.

 

I recommend that you get the book The Underwater Photographer by Martin Edge. The Third Edition has been out for some time but the Fourth Edition has just come out and I understand it is shipping now.

 

Also, you might want to give Reef Photo and Video a call. They are one of the sponsors of this site and they can provide answers to all of you questions. They are a great source of information and many on this forum use them for all their underwater needs.

 

Above all, feel free to ask additional questions as they come up.

 

Cheers,

 

Ellen

Hi Ellen, thanks!

- I guess what I meant was using a strobe gives you (99% of the time) richer, more vivid colours than natural light, right?

As for distances and aperture, what I was meaning is - Do you have to manually expose for the strobe flash or what? Because the camera's onboard metering will account for the onboard flash but not the intensity of the strobe, right?

I guess what I'm asking in a very long winded way - Currently, I go out to the garden or wherever with a tripod, I compose my macro image of a flower on AV or TV, the camera focuses and the shot is taken - Or in full manual (The G11 shows onscreen what the shot will most likely look like with the settings you chose..)

- Will it be the same underwater with a strobe? :)

- What about this puppy? http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=p...da1dcfcab4b54df

- Would the above strobe be compact and not completely fragile to take on a 2-3 year around the world trip? I want a decent strobe that will give great photos, like the G11 of the camera world (To be anyway...) - I'm an aspiring enthusiast, no a pro ;)

Thanks for the recommendations on site and book! :)

- What's TTL?

- What's a guide number?

- Beam angle of 70o.. Is that good?

- What's a diffuser?

 

eastern_clownfish.jpg

hm-Woods-nudibranch.jpg

atfiji02.jpg

bonaire-flower-coral.jpg

 

I guess taking photos like the above is what I'm aiming for but I guess the reef scene might be a bit tough. I hope I'm not aiming too high :)

Edited by MitHere

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Hi,

You also should checkout this great site; http://www.uwphotographyguide.com/ lots of great info for us. It will answer most of your questions. The G11 is a great small camera and definitely has the potential to do what you want to do.

 

Good luck,

Steve

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