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craig

Cocos Island trip

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Here are some shots from my recent Cocos trip. I would a good trip diving-wise, but bad vis combined with long distance subjects made it not so good photography-wise. I used a Kodak SLR/n with a prototype Aquatica housing. I started with a 17-35 but found it to be very soft so I switched to a Tamron 28-75 in the same port arrangement. Just as well considering the subject distances, and I'm working with Blake on a solution to the 17-35 issue. I shot with 3 Inon Z220 strobes since I struggled to get enough light.

 

First, an immense school of jacks. When you got inside these it suddenly went dark...

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The silvertip site had plenty of silvertips on it but vis wasn't so good. Still, I managed a couple of passable shots. These are very confident sharks and don't mind giving some close passes.

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The hammerheads stayed too far away much of the week in spite of the fact that most of us were on rebreathers. On the second to last day, I finally got some decent opportunities with one particular shark and some cleaners...

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The on the same site the following (last) day, it hit the proverbial fan. Hammers by the 100's swarming us as though we weren't even there. Couldn't figure where to point my camera (and my lens chose that moment to stick at 75mm). Photos can't describe the dive. It was breathtaking.

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Of course, it seems when I go to Cocos my best pictures are of other divers. Here is a picture of me taking a picture of Vickie taking a picture of me (for your amusement). You can see my three-headed Aquatica/Kodak monster. Rebreathers are very cool.

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Craig,

 

Love the last two posted hammerhead shots. Awesome schools of fish, also. I've never seen a photographer use three stobes...great idea, considering the conditions you described. Good job!

 

Greg

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Wonderful shots Craig. Did you use a magenta filter on the first few posted?

 

Love the 3 strobes idea. I'll have to give that a try.

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I didn't use filters on this trip due to lack of strobe power. The water was pretty blue in spite of heavy particulates..

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I guess I have to get the credit card out and book that cocos trip.

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Nice photos Craig!

Really an impressive setup (kodak + 3 strobes).

The second photos (and any more) don't have the correct lighting.

Try using more power with the strobe that point to far objets.

I think to setup the power of 3 strobes may be near impossible.

Forget these toy-strobes and use a professional strobe like subtronic or hartenberger. You feel the difference.

Only one subtronic alpha pro have more power and coverage that your 3 strobes.

Regards,

fRAS

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I think your pics turned out pretty good!! Looks like the vis was pretty good for the shots you posted.

 

I am doing the cocos rebreather trip in 2006 with fathoms group. how did you enjoy the trip overall?

thanks Dan

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The trip was wonderful (just not photographically). Plenty of action that you couldn't quite get your camera on. We used the Undersea Hunter, the smaller of their two boats. It was my second trip with them and they're first class. This was my first rebreather experience and I liked it a lot. A little more difficult than open circuit and the mouthpiece was terribly uncomfortable. Makes a huge difference with critters, though, and I'd love to do more of it.

 

No need to use derogatory language, fras. The Inon's are fine strobes, just not high power. I happen to own much bigger strobes and it was a mistake not to bring them. I packed two incompatible rigs (Aquatica and Nexus) plus an HDTV rig and saved travel weight by omitting my big guns. Two Hartenburger 625's plus batteries, cords and chargers is over 15 pounds. 4 Inons plus everything is about half that. Of course, the Inon's didn't get the job done either, but once the hammers got within 6 feet they did.

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Stunning shots Craig ..... now where is my Visa card 8)

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Ah, there you are. I couldn't remember where it was you were heading.

 

Sharks, well, my favoUrite subject none the less.

 

Any comments on the Aquatica housing for the Kodak and using the camera underwater?

 

I posted some shots from my Tiger shark trip while you were away. Shot with my new A300 housing and I loved shooting DSLR. The 15mm fe did the trick but we will see what the new 10-22mm gets for reviews. The Inons had no problem shooting the sharks in the Bahamas but they are usually within 6 feet none the less.

 

Nice to have you back my friend!~

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I have another short trip coming up and there will be some adjustments to the housing and port for that trip. I'm refraining from commenting for the time being since the housing is not complete yet, but don't read too much into that. I had a big problem with the 17-35 that we need to sort out plus I had a control failure on one dive (not a design issue). Everything otherwise worked as expected and I felt the Kodak performed well. I thnk Aquatica users will feel very comfortable with this housing. Love to test this with macro where I think the Kodak will shine.

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Craig, you need few more strobes and you'll be a complete octopus :)

How you set the 3 strobes?

As pure shot I like most the silvertip but the hammerheads are the most impressive of course.

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Great to see the Kodak in the water and doing the business. Looking forward to reading your more detailed thoughts on the camera.

Alex

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The three strobes were simply because I couldn't get enough light. I set them to full, wired two through a dual sync cord and the other on a single cord. No passive slave was necessary.

 

If I had triple clamps I may have used four strobes on two arms.

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