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elmelodico

White balance iris and variable red filter for a DLSR/Mirrorless rig with WWL1-B+CMC1

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Hey guys, didn’t know where exactly to post this as it is more of a wishlist, so please feel free to move it to the right section. I posted this here since it relates to filming underwater and white balancing often to achieve proper colors in-camera.

Thanks to Phil Rudin’s reviews, I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a WWL1-B and a CMC-1 for maximum versatility on my next trip. However, I’d really like to use an M67 variable red filter and a white balance slate or cap to avoid post color correction as much as possible. I’m also planning on using lights with ambient filters, as I probably will be shooting more wide angle than macro. 

While researching I found this really cool dome Nauticam used to sell called the 9” white balance wide angle dome port. They even got an award back in 2012 for its design and I definitely get why; it is a very elegant solution to a common problem while shooting video, IMO. Has anyone used it before? I couldn't find any reviews.

Since clearly their current focus is towards more versatility and modularity, I was wondering, wouldn’t it make sense to put one of those retractable white balance iris at the end of their flat port 45? I can see this solution could be quite cost-effective, even if it raises the price a bit, it would still be way less than the dome itself, and would allow to WB often a breeze.

Now, regarding the rotating variable red filters, I’ve only found two, an Inon one and an STC optical. I was hoping to put one of them between the flat 45 and the bayonet mount, but neither have a second M67 mounting thread. 

For the sake of daydreaming, let’s assume they (or someone else like Keldan) did manufacture one with a second thread. Would this minimal distance between the flat port and the water contact optic affect the latter’s image quality? Assuming I’d remove the WWL1-B shades, there shouldn’t be a problem while rotating it, right? And I can also imagine it would be easier to rotate just through the counterweight collar as if using a zoom ring topside. 

I’ve still got 8 months for my next big trip so I reckoned it wouldn’t hurt to dream a little. And hopefully maybe even give them some ideas, since they do read this forum, right? Thoughts?

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I think the biggest problem is that you have two halves of the filter that rotate with respect to each other and this joint needs to carry the weight of the WWL - which is significant particularly in air.   Also they need to be disassembled for cleaning possibly making it harder to get a strong joint (at least the STC version disassembles) .  They probably have no front thread for a reason.

The other concern with adding the filter is vignetting, the lenses are designed with a spacing to the M67 mount and the angle of view of the lens in mind, so if the lens is further away than design it vignettes and you need to zoom in to compensate losing angle of view.  Adding a white balance iris to the flat port would have a similar issue - it takes up space and would be difficult to make it so that it didn't restrict the diameter of the port.  The dome port you can fit all the iris parts and the mechanism on the flat part of the dome port, out of the field of view.

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Both excellent points, Chris, I can see now where these scenarios could be problematic and difficult to implement, respectively (on your mentioning order). Thanks for your input.

With 130 degrees at our disposal, I wouldn't mind too much zooming in a little to avoid vignetting, but dropping the WWL1-B because of a flimsy filter joint would definitely be quite the catastrophe. Back to the drawing board and costs spreadsheet, then.

PS: Just for clarification, the above idea arose from the fact that some cameras need to white balance covering the whole frame in order to do it (sort of) accurately. At 130 degrees, that would take a pretty big non translucent grey card, and even if you did manage to do so, it would be at best at arms reach, somewhat defying the purpose for longer/wider takes. 

 

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3 hours ago, elmelodico said:

PS: Just for clarification, the above idea arose from the fact that some cameras need to white balance covering the whole frame in order to do it (sort of) accurately. At 130 degrees, that would take a pretty big non translucent grey card, and even if you did manage to do so, it would be at best at arms reach, somewhat defying the purpose for longer/wider takes. 

 

I'm sure there would be ways to do the WB, you can always zoom in to WB or even take off the WWL if needed, though if you are doing WB with lights you probably want the slate at or near shooting distance.

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That is why I thought a retractable translucent slate would be a better solution, not only in terms of ergonomics but also because the camera would measure both the exposure and the color cast better than using only a certain distance to the subject. Maybe I'm just nitpicking...

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