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HippoFish

Reflections in my port

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Hi all,

 

I’ve got a question about a problem with my SLR/housing system. The camera/housing combo (details below) has been around for a while, so I figured I may be able to find something in the archives addressing my problem but I haven’t found an answer using the search function yet, so I’m turning to the masters here....

 

A few years ago, after extensive research and reading all of Phil Rudin’s articles, I finally packed away the old Nikonos cameras and made the plunge into the DSLR world, buying an Olympus E-620 along with the PT-E06 housing, the PPO-E05 port, the 14-42 kit lens, and the 50mm lens. I’m using this with an Inon d2000 strobe.

 

For the most part, I’ve been quite happy with it, though there is one major exception: when I try to use the 14-42mm lens for anything even slightly wide-angle (maybe from the 14-25mm range), I get reflections that show up in the pictures. Since I’m using the fiber optic cable with the strobe, I need to have the camera’s flash on inside the housing, which is where I thought the reflections were coming from. However, last time I took the camera into the water to try to get to the bottom of the problem, I could see in the view-finder that the refections were present even when not shooting, due to ambient light. The effect was amplified if the camera was pointed downward (with the back of the clear/opaque housing pointed towards the sun). I’ve tried putting flat-black tape over any white writing on the lens but it doesn’t seem to help.

 

I’m guessing the problem must be due to something I am doing since I haven’t seen anyone else report the same problem—hopefully it’s some simple fix but at this point, I’m worried that I’ll have to shell out another $1500 for the 9-18mm lens /PPO-E04 port combo just to take a wider-angle shot. And, yes, I would love to get the 9-18mm lens one day, but right now I can’t afford it. An even bigger worry is if I was to get the 9-18mm lens and port, that the problem might remain.

 

If anyone has any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate it!

 

Thanks,

 

greg

 

Oh, I'm attaching 2 test pictures I took while trying to determine the source of the problem. One was taken zoomed all the way out to 14mm (28mm for non-four-thirds cameras); the second was taken at 23mm (46mm).

post-42335-0-76615600-1373145209_thumb.jpg

post-42335-0-09433400-1373145241_thumb.jpg

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Ooops, I guess I didn't do a broad enough search--I had been looking specifically for E620/PT-E06 related posts but have just found that this seems to be an issue with other ports/housings as well.

 

Since the Olympus port is clear/opaque, does anyone have any suggestions on how to keep the sunlight out without having to apply any sort of solvents? Every tape, permanent marker, adhesive that I know of is dissolved in an organic solvent which is likely not going to be great for the integrity of a polymer-based housing....

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I have a similar problem. Not only could I see the reflection of the front of the lens, I could read the text engraved on the front black face. I used a Sharpe marker to blacken the text, which helped a lot. I also plan on taping a small donut piece of black velvet to the front to further darken the surface.

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You are probably getting stray light from the internal strobe that is causing the reflection. You might try building a curtain that would fit around the lens and block stray light getting into the port area. Sometimes the zoom gears are enough to block the stray light.

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Thanks everyone for the good information. I just re-read a thread that I read when I originally decided to buy this set-up and only now noticed a tidbit that ce4jesus wrote back in 2009:

 

" When the 14-42 is at 42 mm there's no reflection either, however when you go wide without the rubber light blocker in place you'll get reflection...go figure."

 

Apparently, there is a "light blocker" that was supposed to come with the port but I never received--thus explaining why others haven't had this issue with this set-up. I'm not sure what this "light blocker" is supposed to look like (and I suspect tracking one down at this point would be rather difficult) but I will try to recreate it and see if that solves the problem. I'm guessing this is something I could just affix to the zoom gear, but if anyone else has any recommendations, it would be greatly appreciated!

 

Thanks,

 

greg

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A blocker is a black disc that sits in the "neck" of the dome. I've cut them from black plastic to push fit on the barrel of the lens. I would cover up all the natty silver and gold markings on your lens with a Sharpie or tape, too.

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Fantastic--thanks for the description, Tim. Sounds like something I can put together fairly easily. I'll play around with it this week and let everyone know how it turns out.

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