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Phil Rudin

Nauticam NA-A7c housing

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Nauticam has just added a housing NA-A7c for the Sony A7c compact full frame camera which will be coming soon. I expect this will be one of the smallest full frame housings on the market especially when mated with the very small FE 28-60mm zoom and WWL-1.

Camera size compared to the Sony a7R IV and the aging FE 28-70mm zoom.

 

 

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Information and photos for the Nauticam NA-A7C housings have now been added to the Nauticam web page in the Sony housing section. It is about the same size and weight as the Sony A6600 APS-C camera housing.

 

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Edited by Phil Rudin

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Hi @Phil Rudin

I am really interested to hear about your experience with the a7c housing once you've been able to test. The smaller housing (and cost) for the a7C are really intriguing.

In the past, have you found the functionality of the smaller a6XX housings to be lacking from the full size a7X housings?

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7 hours ago, Phil Rudin said:

Information and photos for the Nauticam NA-A7C housings have now been added to the Nauticam web page in the Sony housing section. It is about the same size and weight as the Sony A6600 APS-C camera housing.

 

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Hi @Phil Rudin - the smaller size of the A7C and housing make it attractive to me, for sure. I wonder if you can share your opinion about one thing: most reviewers have complained that the A7C EVF is rather small. I've been using the old Sony Nex-7 in Nauticam for several years, and shoot exclusively with that EVF and no additional viewfinder attachments on the housing. I am wondering how these two EVF's (Sony Nex-7 vs A7C) compare (in the respective Nauticam housings): I mean, if the experience is similar, then I can avoid having to bulk up the housing with those optics attached to the back. Many thanks,
Ajay

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On 1/20/2021 at 7:57 PM, rgilkes said:

Hi @Phil Rudin

I am really interested to hear about your experience with the a7c housing once you've been able to test. The smaller housing (and cost) for the a7C are really intriguing.

In the past, have you found the functionality of the smaller a6XX housings to be lacking from the full size a7X housings?

I tested the Nauticam NAS-NEX-5 housing for uwpmag.com back in Nov/Dec 2010 and I owned the Nauticam NEX-7 housing. Both housings were very well made and had controls for all function buttons and dials as I recall. The main difference between the NEX/A6000 lines is the lack of a second command wheel that allows you to access both shutter speed control and aperture control at the same time. This is an easy work around by assigning one too a function button. The second difference is the size of the EVF which is smaller than on the A7 & A9 line of cameras. The A7c has a large LCD and the ability to add the 45 degree or 180 viewfinders to the EVF. The last difference is the lower flash sync speed of 1/160th sec v. 1/250th with the A7 & A9. This may be a large problem for some but not a game changer for most. 

On 1/20/2021 at 10:10 PM, ajay said:

Hi @Phil Rudin - the smaller size of the A7C and housing make it attractive to me, for sure. I wonder if you can share your opinion about one thing: most reviewers have complained that the A7C EVF is rather small. I've been using the old Sony Nex-7 in Nauticam for several years, and shoot exclusively with that EVF and no additional viewfinder attachments on the housing. I am wondering how these two EVF's (Sony Nex-7 vs A7C) compare (in the respective Nauticam housings): I mean, if the experience is similar, then I can avoid having to bulk up the housing with those optics attached to the back. Many thanks,
Ajay

I used the NEX-7 for two years and I would say that the EVF's are very close. The big upside is that the AF system is the same as the one found in the latest high end Sony cameras. I use C-AF shooting with the tracking flexible spot set at medium. This is excellent for both wide angle and macro auto focus. Much of the time I use the 921,600 dot LCD for focusing and avoid the EVF altogether. Like the A7-series and the A9-series I believe the A7c is the first in a line that may evolve to include a high res and video versions. I also believe that Sony will continue to design smaller lenses for this system. I am already using the camera with the tiny Rokinon 18mm F/2.8 and some other smaller Rokinon lenses for top side photography.   

 

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Thanks @Phil Rudin. If the EVF is similar to the Nex-7, it should be good enough for me. Interestingly, when I first migrated from compact to the Nex-7, my biggest concern was whether I'd ever be able to adopt to holding the camera to my eye during a dive and using EVF instead of the LCD. It turned out that in practice, I almost never use the LCD.. In fact the main reason I want to switch from the Nex to a newer camera is for the AF. So it's also reassuring to hear your comments about that.

Ajay

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The auto focus on the A7c is like night and day to NEX-7 when setup correctly. Keeping the system as compact as your NEX-7 package will be a matter of proper lens selection. Check the size with the Nauticam housing and WWL-1B/WWL-1 using the A7c with the Sony FE 28-60 "kit" lens. Very tiny lens and port.

 

 

 

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Edited by Phil Rudin

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Indeed, this WWL-1B is an interesting option for me, since keeping my travel weight low is very attractive. So far my plan was use the camera with the Sony/Zeiss 16-35 and 180 port for wide angle, but now this option looks nice also. Thanks for the update.

Kind regards,

Ajay

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24 minutes ago, ajay said:

Indeed, this WWL-1B is an interesting option for me, since keeping my travel weight low is very attractive. So far my plan was use the camera with the Sony/Zeiss 16-35 and 180 port for wide angle, but now this option looks nice also. Thanks for the update.

Kind regards,

Ajay

Isn't that the WWL-C - don't think there's a "B".    Phil have you tested the WWL-C with full frame?  others have reported it's not as good on larger sensors compared to WWL-1 and Nauticam so far have only listed the WWL-1 on their port charts with the 28-60.

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1 hour ago, ChrisRoss said:

Isn't that the WWL-C - don't think there's a "B".    Phil have you tested the WWL-C with full frame?  others have reported it's not as good on larger sensors compared to WWL-1 and Nauticam so far have only listed the WWL-1 on their port charts with the 28-60.

Maybe this:

https://wetpixel.com/articles/nauticam-ships-wwl-1b

- brett

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13 minutes ago, TmxDiver said:

Thanks Brett,

looks like it's brand new (the post is dated yesterday) and uses the WWL-1 Port chart which is here:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/16jbJ08JAzMxCLoI6LfraDJzks75oWC5e/view

Appears to be the WWL-1 with a buoyancy collar so it's a bigger dia (156 vs 130mm dia) heavier in air ( 1350 vs 1240 gr) and a lot lighter in water (120 vs 620 gr).

 

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Hi @ChrisRoss it's indeed the newly announce WWL lens on the front page of Wetpixel.

The conundrums are:

1. How much difference in quality between (28-60 + WWL-1B) and (16-35 F4 + 180mm dome): the former lens is worse, while in the latter, the dome size compromises the quality away from center.

2. With this WWL-1B, I _know_ that I'll be tempted to take both, the wide and the sub-sea +10 on many dives.. and it'll be a bit cumbersome to carry/switch mid-dive.. With the other setup -- decision made before dive (macro or wide), and that's it.

..and of course, 90mm macro might overcome all my lack of skills and drop some good photos into my card.

Cheers

Ajay

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The whole premise of the WWL is that the image quality is better than rectilinear wides behind domes over the entire frame.  The dome in theory compensates for the water interface if the lens is perfectly placed behind the dome, but in practice aberrations are introduced and quality suffers, so much so that an average quality lens behind the WWL can out perform a top notch lens behind a dome.    I would think a 16mm lens behind a 180mm dome would be pushing things on full frame though.

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17 minutes ago, ChrisRoss said:

The whole premise of the WWL is that the image quality is better than rectilinear wides behind domes over the entire frame.  The dome in theory compensates for the water interface if the lens is perfectly placed behind the dome, but in practice aberrations are introduced and quality suffers, so much so that an average quality lens behind the WWL can out perform a top notch lens behind a dome.    I would think a 16mm lens behind a 180mm dome would be pushing things on full frame though.

I agree.

Shooting on A7III, I have the 16-35 f4 with the 21.5cm dome (acrylic) and below f11, there is strong corner softness (unusuable for reef). Happy to have switched over to the WWL-1 although i got it before the WWL-1B announcement.. (ranting as I am not a big fan of that styrofoam collar of the WWL-1 - should have waited longer!)

 

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12 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

Isn't that the WWL-C - don't think there's a "B".    Phil have you tested the WWL-C with full frame?  others have reported it's not as good on larger sensors compared to WWL-1 and Nauticam so far have only listed the WWL-1 on their port charts with the 28-60.

The WWL-1B has just been announced, (see Wetpixel front page) it appears the glass remains the same with the difference being the hard lens cap like WACP and built-in Flotation collar. 

Regarding the 16-35 F/4 or 2.8 with 180mm port will be lacking in corner sharpnesss v the 230mm port. The WWL-1/1B with the Sony FE 28-60mm will be a much better option. If you prefer the Sony FE 16-35 F/4 and use a Nauticam housing I have the mint lens and gear for sale. On full frame the Sony FE A7, A9 and A7c series cameras can all be used with the new FE 28-60 lens. This lens supports WWL-1/1B, WACP and CMC-1&2 closeup lenses. 

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14 hours ago, Phil Rudin said:

If you prefer the Sony FE 16-35 F/4 and use a Nauticam housing I have the mint lens and gear for sale.

I suppose even if I go with the 28-60 option (as recommended by you), I might still get the 16-35/4 for topside. Unfortunately, fair price plus shipping for your one may might make it pretty much a wash over just buying a new with local warranty here in Hong Kong (~ USD 840). Thanks for the offer, though, and the very useful discussion!

Kind regards,

Ajay

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Attached is a photo of the Nauticam NA-A7C housing with the original WWL-1 next to the original Nauticam NA-A7R IV housing with the WACP-1. Keep in mind that the A7R IV housing was the smallest (before A7C) full frame housing on the market and that A7R IV boosts the largest number of MP's with a 35mm sensor. Also notice the placement of the second M14 mount on the front of the housing. The M14 for the vacuum valve is on the rear door of the clam shell type housing. The clam shell styleA7C  housing with rotary cam  lock is also a first for a full frame housing.

  

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Great development to see the overall size decrease. After a few strong & unexpected current during diving in Indonesia, I'm sticking with a small(er) rig. Yet coming from an aging Oly Pen, I'm unsure what would be a proper successor. And preferably for an aging land camera at the same time (Nikon D80)

Phil, on your second photo from the top (topside view) it appear the A7C has only a very small "grip depth" when used on land. How is your experience in that regard? Can you wrap a hand around it properly?

In addition to the cost aspect, I'm eyeballing the Nikon Z50 for that reason. (with option to add a WWL) From what I read on the Nauticam website, this Sony A7C housing is just slightly small than the the Nikon Z50, correct?

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The A7C has the newer Z battery so it has a grip about the same size as A7R IV, not quite as deep but I have no problem holding it and I have big hands.

Nikon Z-50 and Sony A7C is hardly apples to apples because the Z50 is an APS-C camera and A7C is full frame. The Nauticam Z50 housing cost $2672.00 US while the A7C housing is $2586.00 US. The Z50 housing uses the same N100 ports but it is 328mm X 172mm X 120mm and weight is 2.5kg. The A7C housing has the N100 port mount and is 307 X 172mm X 103mm and weight is 1.78 kg. 

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15 hours ago, Dutch_Diver said:

Great development to see the overall size decrease. After a few strong & unexpected current during diving in Indonesia, I'm sticking with a small(er) rig. Yet coming from an aging Oly Pen, I'm unsure what would be a proper successor. And preferably for an aging land camera at the same time (Nikon D80)

Phil, on your second photo from the top (topside view) it appear the A7C has only a very small "grip depth" when used on land. How is your experience in that regard? Can you wrap a hand around it properly?

In addition to the cost aspect, I'm eyeballing the Nikon Z50 for that reason. (with option to add a WWL) From what I read on the Nauticam website, this Sony A7C housing is just slightly small than the the Nikon Z50, correct?

Before jumping into FF, seriously consider the cost of the camera, lenses, housing, ports, etc. 

A7c is physically similar to A6xxx series in size, but the glass cost for FF is very expensive. Depending on your use case, APS-C may save you thousands on glass alone.

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1 hour ago, Lewis88 said:

Before jumping into FF, seriously consider the cost of the camera, lenses, housing, ports, etc.

As I understand it, the idea behind an A7c rig is to use it with 28-60mm and WWL-1, which will keep it relatively small and reasonably priced, while offering the advantages of FF. If you get a giant dome and 16-35mm then you might as well go for A7R or A7S series. 

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3 hours ago, Lewis88 said:

Before jumping into FF, seriously consider the cost of the camera, lenses, housing, ports, etc. 

A7c is physically similar to A6xxx series in size, but the glass cost for FF is very expensive. Depending on your use case, APS-C may save you thousands on glass alone.

If you are gonna go FF, Sony E-mount is one of, if not the best to do so if cost is a major consideration. Sigma, Tamron and other third-parties have a LOT of glass for e-mount that is very cost effective and performs extremely well, in some cases better than native Sony glass.

Edited by rgilkes
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30 minutes ago, rgilkes said:

If you are gonna go FF, Sony E-mount is one of, if not the best to do so if cost is a major consideration. Sigma, Tamron and other third-parties have a LOT of glass for e-mount that is very cost effective and performs extremely well, in some cases better than native Sony glass.

I absolutely agree. The question is if the extra cost of going FF is really needed for most of us.

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2 hours ago, Lewis88 said:

I absolutely agree. The question is if the extra cost of going FF is really needed for most of us.

It's a very good question!

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Hi Phil,

Just a question, on the nauticam A7C, does the LCD view is 100 % visible ? it seems from the image above, the LCD view isnt 100 % visible?

Thanks !

 

Wira

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