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AntF

Micro Four Thirds Advice

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Hi

Firstly, thank you for providing this forum and for the value of its content. 

Second - I'd appreciate some advice around MFT camera choice for someone moving up from a TG6.

Applications:

·       Everything from reefscapes with diver cameos, fast moving dolphins or seals, slow mantas and even slower nudis (most dives in Indian Ocean).

·       I would prioritise stills over video but want to capture video occasionally

·       Would use it for surface, wildlife photography – mainly something that will track and shoot moving birds

·       Air travel friendly i.e. light and compact.

Current thinking on kit:

·       Olympus OMD Em5 Mkiii - seems to be a decent all-rounder and something to learn on.

·       AOI Housing, flash trigger, viewfinder, vacuum, ports – seems like good value & reasonable ergonomics (I’m coming from a Seafrogs TG6 housing)

·       Zuiko 12-40mm lens – idea is to learn on a general zoom before I invest in more glass (8mm and 60mm likely?).

·       AOI DLP 09 4 inch glass dome port (recommended on AOI port chart). I’m not sure I want to go WWL-1 yet.

·       Strobes – 2 x Z330s

I’d appreciate your thoughts on the setup and any immediate concerns that spring to mind.

 

Thanks

Ant

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The Em-5 III is said to have the same AF system as the EM-1 MkII, but perhaps not quite as good as the EM-1 MkIII.  The EM-1 III also has a 40% larger battery, something to consider for UW work.

For land work, the C-AF plus tracking (EM-1 MkII) is pretty good, but birds in flight might be a bit of a stretch for it depending on what sort of background you are tracking them against. 

The 12-40 is a great lens very sharp and quick to AF, 24mm equivalent is wide but not really UW wide.  I use it quite a bit in the temperate waters around Sydney, shooting larger fish, smaller schools of fish, basically on dives where a lot of subjects are too big for macro lenses.  This shot was taken with it and the Zen DP-170 dome:  https://www.aus-natural.com/Underwater/Bony Fish/slides/Old Wives 18.html

It will also do semi macro work, as it focuses very close and achieves 0.3x magnification so will shoot larger nudis, basically things 60mm in size and larger.

The 4"dome is  too small for it though and I believe the corners will suffer, it would be a real shame to use such a nice lens behind a dome that's too small.   The DLP-09 in particular could only be used for the 12-40.  I believe backscatter recommend an 8"dome with that lens.

As for video it'll certainly do short clips and you can one button WB it in video mode for occasional clips.

As for the housing it will be good value though for not a great deal more you could get an isotta housing.  You mention a flash trigger, it appears the you can use the supplied mini flash as a trigger and it works very well.  Battery drain is minimal if used in manual at 1/64 power and it easily triggers your strobes.  It appears the housing doesn't include a relay eye piece to use the EVF and the photos on the various sites seem careful not to show you the back of the housing.  IMO that is a significant exclusion and means you need to use the rear LCD.

 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, AntF said:

Hi

Firstly, thank you for providing this forum and for the value of its content. 

Second - I'd appreciate some advice around MFT camera choice for someone moving up from a TG6.

Applications:

·       Everything from reefscapes with diver cameos, fast moving dolphins or seals, slow mantas and even slower nudis (most dives in Indian Ocean).

·       I would prioritise stills over video but want to capture video occasionally

=> any MFT camera will do this...

 

·       Would use it for surface, wildlife photography – mainly something that will track and shoot moving birds

=> difficult to get, but o.k. with Em1II onwards...

 

·       Air travel friendly i.e. light and compact.

Current thinking on kit:

·       Olympus OMD Em5 Mkiii - seems to be a decent all-rounder and something to learn on.

=> EM5III is practically an EM1II with the size of EM5II. I rather would go with EM1II, as Chris suggests and look for 2nd hand Nauticam housing (and or go with new EM1III housing - but to my opinion EM1III doas not provide advantage for UW, so is only costing a lot). The size and weight difference

 to EM5III is neglectible for practical purpose, but bigger batterie and "profi" features are preferable ...

·       AOI Housing, flash trigger, viewfinder, vacuum, ports – seems like good value & reasonable ergonomics (I’m coming from a Seafrogs TG6 housing)

=> I rather would look for 2nd hand Nauticam NA-Em1II and build a sytem around this. Later no problem to upgrade to next generation camera and housing, keeping all the rest...

·       Zuiko 12-40mm lens – idea is to learn on a general zoom before I invest in more glass (8mm and 60mm likely?).

=> Good idea, but with Zen DP170 or NA 180 domeport. Soon you will want Zuiko 8mm (or Canon 8-15mm), both go with Zen DP170 or NA180. You also will want Zuiko 60mm (take NA 45 macroport with 20mm extension, then you can house also other lenses, as e.g. Pana 45mm). These three lenses is all you will need..

·       AOI DLP 09 4 inch glass dome port (recommended on AOI port chart). I’m not sure I want to go WWL-1 yet.

·       Strobes – 2 x Z330s

=> I have them. no problem, great flashes...

I’d appreciate your thoughts on the setup and any immediate concerns that spring to mind.

 

Thanks

Ant

Hi Ant,

Se my personal thouhgts above...

 

Good luck, Wolfgang

Edited by Architeuthis

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Hi Ant,

Started using Olympus cameras in 2003 with the release of the E-1 DSLR 4/3 5MP camera. Housed both the Olympus E300 and E330 DSLR 4/3 cameras in Olympus housings and did my first review of now more than 100 for uwpmag.com testing the Olympus E-PL-1 in an Olympus housing. 

Over the years I have reviewed many of the Olympus cameras, Lenses and housings for the magazine.

First now of the lenses you would select for underwater work would be useful for birding so my recommendations will be limited to U/W work.

First the 24-40mm is a lovely lens but for best results you need at least an 8 inch acrylic (200mm) or 170/180mm glass dome port, with the recommended extension and the zoom gear. The 12-40 retail is $1000.00 for a lens with an AOV of 84-30 degrees, with the 7-14mm $1400.00 zoom AOV is 114 to 75 degrees. While the 7-14 or panama's 8-18 you would be best served using a 200 to 230mm pert not the recommended 180mm port. Total cost for these configurations will run from around $2000.00 acyrlic too as high as around $3500.00.

I have used these Olympus lenses extensively and I can tell you without any reservation that the WWL-1/1B with a kit lens will provide better results hands down. All in with the 14-42EZ, zoom gear, flat port, bayonet port adapter and WWL-1B all Nauticam is around $2600.00 for a higher image quality package with a 130 to 50 degree AOV. 

Regarding cameras the EM-1 MK II is the bast choice over EM-1 III and EM-5 III for U/W work. 

Regarding housings the AOI housing for EM-5 III is an upgraded (better) version of the Olympus PT housings which were made by AOI. 

The pickup finder for the Olympus housing that allows a better view into the EVF is a bit useless to me because the EVF is very small to begin with. If I were choosing a housing and wanted to use the EVF most of the time I would be going with the Isotta or more expensive Nauticam housing. 

If you will be happy using the LCD as you have in the past with the TG-6 then the AOI housing for EM-5 III would be your best value. With system all-in for WWL-1B would be around $2400.00US. For the 24-40 zoom all-in would be around $1789.00 acrylic and $2460.00 glass both 200mm or 8 inch domes. The problem with the configuration is that a +2 closeup lens is recommended for both ports. This makes up for the lens inability to focus because the lens is too close to the port and a port extension is not offered. This is a down side for image quality and corner sharpness.

I just reviewed the Olympus EPL-10 and AOI housing in the current issue of uwpmag.com and to me this system is the best buy of any entry level interchangeable lens camera for U/W photography in the current market. The AOI housings are very well made at the price point and well worth considering. The Isotta housing will offer more accessories to add-on going forward, like the excellent Inon accessory viewfinders, more port offerings and more.

uwpmag.com is a free PDF download and if you go to the back issue section at the top of the page and put my name, Phil Rudin into the search engine you will find reviews for many of the best Olympus lenses including the 8mm fisheye, 12-40mm, 7-14mm, WWL-1 and WWL-1B plus more.   

 

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21 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

The Em-5 III is said to have the same AF system as the EM-1 MkII, but perhaps not quite as good as the EM-1 MkIII.  The EM-1 III also has a 40% larger battery, something to consider for UW work.

For land work, the C-AF plus tracking (EM-1 MkII) is pretty good, but birds in flight might be a bit of a stretch for it depending on what sort of background you are tracking them against. 

The 12-40 is a great lens very sharp and quick to AF, 24mm equivalent is wide but not really UW wide.  I use it quite a bit in the temperate waters around Sydney, shooting larger fish, smaller schools of fish, basically on dives where a lot of subjects are too big for macro lenses.  This shot was taken with it and the Zen DP-170 dome:  https://www.aus-natural.com/Underwater/Bony Fish/slides/Old Wives 18.html

It will also do semi macro work, as it focuses very close and achieves 0.3x magnification so will shoot larger nudis, basically things 60mm in size and larger.

The 4"dome is  too small for it though and I believe the corners will suffer, it would be a real shame to use such a nice lens behind a dome that's too small.   The DLP-09 in particular could only be used for the 12-40.  I believe backscatter recommend an 8"dome with that lens.

As for video it'll certainly do short clips and you can one button WB it in video mode for occasional clips.

As for the housing it will be good value though for not a great deal more you could get an isotta housing.  You mention a flash trigger, it appears the you can use the supplied mini flash as a trigger and it works very well.  Battery drain is minimal if used in manual at 1/64 power and it easily triggers your strobes.  It appears the housing doesn't include a relay eye piece to use the EVF and the photos on the various sites seem careful not to show you the back of the housing.  IMO that is a significant exclusion and means you need to use the rear LCD.

 

 

Thanks for the feedback Chris - much appreciated.  I'm the other side of the country so anticipated similar use from the 12-40. I had similar misgivings about the lack of  EVF - but I don't have any reference as I've only ever used LCD. I first looked at EM-1 mkiii in a Nauticam housing with all the domes ports etc and it added up to more than I had anticipated (yes, I know I was naiive :-))  , then thought that as EM-5 mkiii had the same system, at a lower price point, and cheaper housing. ....I looked at the Isotta as well but  not the entire system.  

So it's back to the drawing board again :-)

 

 

 

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Thanks for the EM1, lens and system advice Wolfgang - really helpful.  I've seen similar system related advice on this forum( it being better to buy used Nauticam because you are buying into the system) so now I just have to accept the reality for myself!

 

Regards

Ant

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Hi Phil,

I’ve read a number of the uwpmag issues (including your reviews – thank you; its been a key part of my learning). You’ve also give me much to think on regarding camera, lens and housing choice and I very much appreciate the time taken to provide me with this advice. One of my concerns has been that I choose a wrong lens/port/adaptor combination and I guess the best way to avoid that is to stick with one manufacturer and invest in quality equipment that will last. 

Regards

 

Ant

 

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13 hours ago, AntF said:

Thanks for the feedback Chris - much appreciated.  I'm the other side of the country so anticipated similar use from the 12-40. I had similar misgivings about the lack of  EVF - but I don't have any reference as I've only ever used LCD. I first looked at EM-1 mkiii in a Nauticam housing with all the domes ports etc and it added up to more than I had anticipated (yes, I know I was naiive :-))  , then thought that as EM-5 mkiii had the same system, at a lower price point, and cheaper housing. ....I looked at the Isotta as well but  not the entire system.  

So it's back to the drawing board again :-)

 

Yes, unfortunately it's an expensive pastime, I would suggest you look closely into your costs, the Isotta housing is significantly cheaper than the Nauticam, but the Isotta doesn't include handles or vacuum electronics and strobe mounting balls, which will bring them closer together.  The price for example for the curved Isotta handles is surprisingly high.  I'd estimate by the time you added handles, strobe balls and  vacuum system the price difference between the two would be about $100-200.   Get pricing on everything you'll need as all of the bits and pieces can add up, right down to things like zoom rings.

There's pluses and minuses between the two, for example the Isotta has a larger port opening so fitting the bigger lenses like the 7-14 is easier.  On Nauticam you need to put the camera in the housing install a port converter to use the N120 ports then install the port.  With Nauticam you use the the Zen 170mm port and the 12-40mm just fits through from the back .  The Nauticam ports push in and you throw the lever to lock, while you have to turn the Isotta ports - I think the Nauticam system is easier.  Ideally see if you can find a dealer where you can handle the housings, may be difficult depending in which city you are in.

On the EVF - you wouldn't want to lock yourself out of eventually adding an external viewfinder, the 45° version is great for macro even if the learning curve for using it is steep.  For macro I think you have a better chance of seeing that the right bits are in focus through the EVF than on the back screen, particularly if the subject is close to the bottom and seeing the screen is harder.  The depth of field with macro is less than you are used to with the TG-6 and you really need to see where to place the depth of field you have and this is a lot easier through a diopter corrected EVF than a rear screen. 

Your other option for starting out would be to go with the macro setup initially, the ports are cheaper as is the lens and save for a dome and the 12-40.  You can even start with a single strobe and add a second one.  One strobe can do quite well on macro.

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A little late to this thread, but as far as your original idea to use the AOI housing /12-40 combination- I currently use the M1-mkI in the Oly housing, which has the same port system.  The 12-40 is my most commonly used lens because of it's versatility, and  I use it in an Inon glass 170mm dome originally intended for the old 4/3 system (with an adapter and 2" extension).  I used that set up with the Olympus 7-14 until I sold the lens, and now I use the PL8-18 in that combination (It's a good bet the new 8-25 will work as well if you can figure out a zoom gear).  It's nice to be able to switch from normal to wide on the same trip, and by removing the 2" extension I can use the Olympus 8mm fisheye.  Overall, it's a pretty economical set up (if that term even applies to this hobby); here's the dome:

http://www.divervision.com/inon-dome-port-olympus-with-protector-ii-set-for-zuiko-digital-ed-8mm-f3.5-fisheye-456212143338.html?search=Inon Dome

With some careful searching online and through ebay you can likely piece my set up together nowadays for less than $1000 (not counting lenses / gears).  I haven't looked too closely at AOI ports but my guess is they also have something workable, although you'd likely have to go acrylic to keep the costs down.

 

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22 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

Yes, unfortunately it's an expensive pastime, I would suggest you look closely into your costs, the Isotta housing is significantly cheaper than the Nauticam, but the Isotta doesn't include handles or vacuum electronics and strobe mounting balls, which will bring them closer together.  The price for example for the curved Isotta handles is surprisingly high.  I'd estimate by the time you added handles, strobe balls and  vacuum system the price difference between the two would be about $100-200.   Get pricing on everything you'll need as all of the bits and pieces can add up, right down to things like zoom rings.

There's pluses and minuses between the two, for example the Isotta has a larger port opening so fitting the bigger lenses like the 7-14 is easier.  On Nauticam you need to put the camera in the housing install a port converter to use the N120 ports then install the port.  With Nauticam you use the the Zen 170mm port and the 12-40mm just fits through from the back .  The Nauticam ports push in and you throw the lever to lock, while you have to turn the Isotta ports - I think the Nauticam system is easier.  Ideally see if you can find a dealer where you can handle the housings, may be difficult depending in which city you are in.

On the EVF - you wouldn't want to lock yourself out of eventually adding an external viewfinder, the 45° version is great for macro even if the learning curve for using it is steep.  For macro I think you have a better chance of seeing that the right bits are in focus through the EVF than on the back screen, particularly if the subject is close to the bottom and seeing the screen is harder.  The depth of field with macro is less than you are used to with the TG-6 and you really need to see where to place the depth of field you have and this is a lot easier through a diopter corrected EVF than a rear screen. 

Your other option for starting out would be to go with the macro setup initially, the ports are cheaper as is the lens and save for a dome and the 12-40.  You can even start with a single strobe and add a second one.  One strobe can do quite well on macro.

Thanks Chris and good to see NSW moving out of lockdown. 

It's not so much the cost (although I want value for money) but concern around buying into a system I end up being unhappy with and I'm not unhappy with the quality of the TG6 shots (great camera in the right conditions).  The back screen is an issue and I want a viewfinder (AOI has one - but for compacts and I nearly fell off my chair when I saw what Nauticam wanted for theirs). I'd like to buy once and have that system for the next 5-10 years without thinking " I should have gone FF" or "X camera has 8k at 60p but it's APSC". I looked a lot at images from different cameras and I liked the Olympus colours (including video). And the MFT did not seem to be disadvantaged - so for a variety of reasons it ticked the boxes. But I accept that for my purposes any of the popular cameras used u/w will be fine - they all have their positives and negatives.

The general feedback from everyone has been very useful - and it's reminded me I have a lot to learn - still :( . Given @Phil Rudin comments that EM1Mkii is better underwater than EM1 Mkiii (probably due to MKiii not recovering blown highlights as well as Mkii?) I've been looking at Mkii in a Nauticam housing - but it is a much older camera and the housing is the same price as the Mkiii housing.  

So long story short, I am again going through the various offerings I initially listed on my spreadsheet and revising my thinking around price and total package. If I need to spend AUD$10k  on an initial setup that will only be limited by my skills, then so be it.

Cheers

 

Ant

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21 hours ago, Wapiti said:

A little late to this thread, but as far as your original idea to use the AOI housing /12-40 combination- I currently use the M1-mkI in the Oly housing, which has the same port system.  The 12-40 is my most commonly used lens because of it's versatility, and  I use it in an Inon glass 170mm dome originally intended for the old 4/3 system (with an adapter and 2" extension).  I used that set up with the Olympus 7-14 until I sold the lens, and now I use the PL8-18 in that combination (It's a good bet the new 8-25 will work as well if you can figure out a zoom gear).  It's nice to be able to switch from normal to wide on the same trip, and by removing the 2" extension I can use the Olympus 8mm fisheye.  Overall, it's a pretty economical set up (if that term even applies to this hobby); here's the dome:

http://www.divervision.com/inon-dome-port-olympus-with-protector-ii-set-for-zuiko-digital-ed-8mm-f3.5-fisheye-456212143338.html?search=Inon Dome

With some careful searching online and through ebay you can likely piece my set up together nowadays for less than $1000 (not counting lenses / gears).  I haven't looked too closely at AOI ports but my guess is they also have something workable, although you'd likely have to go acrylic to keep the costs down.

 

Thanks Wapiti, 

I've asked the distributor/shop about the compatibility (adaptor, zoom gear etc) and they've in turn asked AOI. So I will explore that option, thank you for suggesting it.

 

regards

 

Ant

 

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4 hours ago, AntF said:

Thanks Chris and good to see NSW moving out of lockdown. 

It's not so much the cost (although I want value for money) but concern around buying into a system I end up being unhappy with and I'm not unhappy with the quality of the TG6 shots (great camera in the right conditions).  The back screen is an issue and I want a viewfinder (AOI has one - but for compacts and I nearly fell off my chair when I saw what Nauticam wanted for theirs). I'd like to buy once and have that system for the next 5-10 years without thinking " I should have gone FF" or "X camera has 8k at 60p but it's APSC". I looked a lot at images from different cameras and I liked the Olympus colours (including video). And the MFT did not seem to be disadvantaged - so for a variety of reasons it ticked the boxes. But I accept that for my purposes any of the popular cameras used u/w will be fine - they all have their positives and negatives.

The general feedback from everyone has been very useful - and it's reminded me I have a lot to learn - still :( . Given @Phil Rudin comments that EM1Mkii is better underwater than EM1 Mkiii (probably due to MKiii not recovering blown highlights as well as Mkii?) I've been looking at Mkii in a Nauticam housing - but it is a much older camera and the housing is the same price as the Mkiii housing.  

So long story short, I am again going through the various offerings I initially listed on my spreadsheet and revising my thinking around price and total package. If I need to spend AUD$10k  on an initial setup that will only be limited by my skills, then so be it.

Cheers

 

Ant

I've been very happy with the Oly UW, if you compare the EM-1 II to the latest Canon and Nikon APS-C cameras they are a very close match with the Oly and Canon pretty much tied and the nikon a smidgen ahead on noise.  I would suggest that while full frame certainly offers advantages on land with low light work, it's not something you test out very often UW and the smaller formats make up for it by being able to shoot at wider apertures than bigger sensors to a certain extent.  That and the great range of reasonably priced lenses suitable for UW work.  Plus no one pays me to shoot and to me the pics are good enough I would suggest indistinguishable for web use and printing up to A3 will be pretty close and travelling with it is a comparative dream.

Take the 12-40 it focuses down to 20cm just about on the dome - you don't get that with the equivalent full frame/APS-C lenses Canons are 18-xxx lenses which 28 - xxx equivalent, the closest thing Canon has is the 15-85 which is not listed on Nauticam's port chart but gets 0.2x magnification at max compared to the 0.3x of the 12-40.  You should be able to get a combo that allows you to use the same dome for both the 12-40 and 8mm fisheye. 

Don't discount Isotta in your calculations either with the bigger port you can fit all the lenses through from back of the housing.  You can still buy the EM-1 II new at Digi direct at a savings of just over $800, which will get a macro lens with change. 

 

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Great, thanks Chris - I'll look at all the suggestions again this weekend when I have some headspace. 

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Hi @Phil Rudin and @ChrisRoss

OK so weighing up the advice, I have gone this route:

Oly EM1 Mkii and Isotta housing

 

I now need to firm up my thinking around lenses. I am leaning towards one all-rounder lens to start with and learn how to use the camera – the Oly 14-42mm EZ pancake kit lens, AS 707 Zoom ring, M67 macro port (H39 – B102) plus Nauticam WWL1-B and Nauticam CMC. Will there be any compatibility issues between Isotta port and Nauticam wet lenses especially if I use the Nauticam bayonet mount system? Are other wet lenses better with Isotta? I would store the unused lens in a neoprene shorts pocket (I currently do this with a Meikon “optical fisheye”) if a fantastic macro opportunity presents itself.

Thoughts?

Edited by AntF

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45 minutes ago, AntF said:

I would store the unused lens in a neoprene shorts pocket (I currently do this with a Meikon “optical fisheye”)

That better be one big pocket - WWL-1B is quite substantial, as far as wet lenses go.

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Thanks @Barmaglot I'll check :)  On the numbers it seems to have similar dimensions to the Meikon (which is160mm across) but a little deeper. I don't want to carry it on a tray arm and unbalance things. The plan is not to take it off other than in exceptional circumstances. But I'd rather learn from other's mistakes, so happy to take advice.

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Which Meikon? I used to have the 4" one, and I don't recall it being 160mm across unless perhaps you measure the shade petals. WWL-1B is big all the way around, as it is quite deep and it has that integrated metal float collar.

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9 hours ago, AntF said:

 

Hi @Phil Rudin and @ChrisRoss

OK so weighing up the advice, I have gone this route:

Oly EM1 Mkii and Isotta housing

 

I now need to firm up my thinking around lenses. I am leaning towards one all-rounder lens to start with and learn how to use the camera – the Oly 14-42mm EZ pancake kit lens, AS 707 Zoom ring, M67 macro port (H39 – B102) plus Nauticam WWL1-B and Nauticam CMC. Will there be any compatibility issues between Isotta port and Nauticam wet lenses especially if I use the Nauticam bayonet mount system? Are other wet lenses better with Isotta? I would store the unused lens in a neoprene shorts pocket (I currently do this with a Meikon “optical fisheye”) if a fantastic macro opportunity presents itself.

Thoughts?

The issue with the isotta ports is getting one the right length, Nauticam mention a power zoom macro port 29 for the EZ lens, while the Isotta port you mention is H39 which I believe is longer. 

The very best lens for the WWL as determined by testing by member interceptor121 (as I recall) is the Panasonic 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II lens and in Nauticam that uses the macro port 35.  I would guess this lens would be fine in the H39 port- but please confirm!!  For reference the Nauticam macro port 35 is 35mm from housing flange to inside of the glass.  I would suggest talking to the local distributor (Brett Lobwein) to try to confirm the right port to buy.  I know the ports for N120 Nauticam can be used on Isotta directly - you would need to confirm if the flange positioning is the same on the B102 port that the EM-1 MkiI uses.  This would mean the port and extension lengths in the Nauticam port chart would be applicable.

Also note that the current new lens sold by Olympus is the 14-42 type III not type II as listed in the port chart.

The Nauticam bayonet is fine as long as you isotta port has an M67 thread, the bayonet adapter screws into that.  As far as wet lens selection goes the WWL is generally acknowledged as having excellent optical quality by many people on this forum.  Other brands are often rated as "good" by various people who own them however there is little objective test information out and about. 

Do note though as Barmagalot says it is a big chunk of glass - so you would want a mighty big pocket to store it in.  The other thing to consider is it will allow you focus right on the glass so instead of taking it off zoom in and get in super close for macro opportunities.  It is equivalent to a 30mm lens at max zoom (3x zoom) so should yield similar results to a 30mm macro lens - more or less.  So unless something is off like a lot of focus breathing with the 14-42 lens you should be able to get about half life size at a distance of about 60mm from the glass.  You would need to test this so I would suggest that you test it out once you have it and see if you feel the need for more magnification for an occasional macro opportunity.  It's not a substitute for a normal 60mm macro lens but will go close for everything but really small (<20mm ) critters.

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10 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

 

The very best lens for the WWL as determined by testing by member interceptor121 (as I recall) is the Panasonic 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II lens and in Nauticam that uses the macro port 35.  I would guess this lens would be fine in the H39 port- but please confirm!!  For reference the Nauticam macro port 35 is 35mm from housing flange to inside of the glass.  I would suggest talking to the local distributor (Brett Lobwein) to try to confirm the right port to buy.  I know the ports for N120 Nauticam can be used on Isotta directly - you would need to confirm if the flange positioning is the same on the B102 port that the EM-1 MkiI uses.  This would mean the port and extension lengths in the Nauticam port chart would be applicable.

 

Thanks @ChrisRoss - more homework but I do appreciate the direct learning :)

As to lenses -  I liked the idea of the WWL-1B as @Phil Rudin suggested  "All in with the 14-42EZ, zoom gear, flat port, bayonet port adapter and WWL-1B all Nauticam is around $2600.00 for a higher image quality package with a 130 to 50 degree AOV." I acknowledge it's my decision to make but appreciate the advice people freely give. I have  previously read and tried to digest Interceptor121's  extensive and thorough reviews and have also listened Adam and Alex talk about the best micro 4/3 lenses so I know about the Panasonic 14-42. 

Backscatter on their website say -  "Isotta housings use a simple port system, which is identical to Sea & Sea's method. The good news here is that Sea & Sea brand ports are fully compatible, so if you have any in your arsenal they will carry right over. You could also run a Nauticam port as long as it has a Sea & Sea style bayonet mount on it, so right out of the box you have tripled your port options" . 

Sea and Sea ML flat Port 33: the distance is 33mm from port mount to inner glass. So that might be closest option to Nauticam or possibly the Sea and Sea bayonet ring https://www.backscatter.com/Nauticam-Sea-and-Sea-3-Lug-Bayonet-Ring-Converts-N

 I'll also contact Brett (from his LinkedIn profile he seems to be fully employed in another occupation). Again, I appreciate your help.

Cheers

Ant

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20 hours ago, Barmaglot said:

Which Meikon? I used to have the 4" one, and I don't recall it being 160mm across unless perhaps you measure the shade petals. WWL-1B is big all the way around, as it is quite deep and it has that integrated metal float collar.

Yes, @Barmaglot its the shade petals (I know they had to have a name). I did read earlier on a thread that someone does the same with WWL-1B. I have the Scubapro cargo shorts with side pockets - very stretchy :) but I heed your warning. I will also look for other options but might never want to take it off especially as Chris suggests I'll have plenty flexibility with it anyway. 

Thanks 

Ant

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1 hour ago, AntF said:

Yes, @Barmaglot its the shade petals (I know they had to have a name). I did read earlier on a thread that someone does the same with WWL-1B. I have the Scubapro cargo shorts with side pockets - very stretchy :) but I heed your warning. I will also look for other options but might never want to take it off especially as Chris suggests I'll have plenty flexibility with it anyway. 

Thanks 

Ant

You may need to remove to it burp it to get any air bubbles sticking to the glass surfaces to move when you first hop in

 

1 hour ago, AntF said:

Thanks @ChrisRoss - more homework but I do appreciate the direct learning :)

As to lenses -  I liked the idea of the WWL-1B as @Phil Rudin suggested  "All in with the 14-42EZ, zoom gear, flat port, bayonet port adapter and WWL-1B all Nauticam is around $2600.00 for a higher image quality package with a 130 to 50 degree AOV." I acknowledge it's my decision to make but appreciate the advice people freely give. I have  previously read and tried to digest Interceptor121's  extensive and thorough reviews and have also listened Adam and Alex talk about the best micro 4/3 lenses so I know about the Panasonic 14-42. 

Backscatter on their website say -  "Isotta housings use a simple port system, which is identical to Sea & Sea's method. The good news here is that Sea & Sea brand ports are fully compatible, so if you have any in your arsenal they will carry right over. You could also run a Nauticam port as long as it has a Sea & Sea style bayonet mount on it, so right out of the box you have tripled your port options" . 

Sea and Sea ML flat Port 33: the distance is 33mm from port mount to inner glass. So that might be closest option to Nauticam or possibly the Sea and Sea bayonet ring https://www.backscatter.com/Nauticam-Sea-and-Sea-3-Lug-Bayonet-Ring-Converts-N

 I'll also contact Brett (from his LinkedIn profile he seems to be fully employed in another occupation). Again, I appreciate your help.

Cheers

Ant

Yes I believe he is , but he's an approachable guy, his website is UWimages for that side of what he does or you could find him on Facebook if you prefer, he lives in Sydney.  He's the Isotta distributor I believe - his contact details including phone are on Isotta's website.

Note that the N120 nauticam and Isotta can be swapped over by changing the lug ring on the lens, the part is easy to find.  They both use the same diameter port opening 120mm.  Don't know that it can be done on the Nauticam N85 - Isotta 102.5mm ports there you would need a machined adapter which will add extension into the mix and I haven't seen such an adapter.  The thing you need to confirm is the nomenclature on the Isotta flat ports - for example does the dimension from port flange to inside of the glass on a H53-102 flat port =  53mm?  Once you confirm that you can directly compare the Nauticam and Isotta port charts and pick the port for whichever lens you buy and be sure of getting a good fit.  You can test vignetting on the bench, before you get it wet.

regarding lens choice the EZ lens is a power zoom so you don't turn the zoom ring to zoom as such,  you turn in one direction or the other to activate the power zoom function much like a compact.  Probably not as easy to get precise framing as regular zoom ring.

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Hello,

I've just bought an used EM1 Mark II in Nauticam housing. It comes with de Panasonic 8 mm fisheye and the 4.33" dome for it.

I'm thinking about buying another lenses and ports. Olympus 60 mm macro: I think it's a must. I will need the N85 Macro Port 65 (36163).

And finally I was thinking in a more versatile lens:

- At first I thought in the Olympus 14-42EZ, I'll need the Nauticam Power Zoom Macro Port 29 (about 400$). The deepshots gear costs about 60$.

First question: is it possible to use the same port for 60 mm an 14-42 with any extension ring?

- Finally I've seen great pictures with the Olympus 12-50 mm which seems really versatile. The issue is I'll need to sell a kidney for the gear and port: about 1.000$ (a little bit cheaper with the deepshots gear).

I worths the price for the 12-50 vs 14-42?

 

Thanks in advanced!

 

 

 

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It appears that the Isotta port choice for WWL-1B is limited to one port with the 14-42EZ which can also support the Oly 60mm macro with a port extension or the 12-50 kit lens that works with WWL-C and only goes to 110 degrees rather than 130 degrees. These are the only lenses that are supported by a zoom gear. Sea & Sea does not make any Olympus housings so no port or gear that can be moved over.

The best value in Olympus cameras now is the E-PL-10 and AOI housing which ships with the 14-42EZ port, zoom gear, optical flash trigger and more. This package with new camera, lens and housing sells for $1334.00, trays and strobes can be added to the package.

The reason I bring this up is that I just reviewed this package in the current issue of uwpmag.com and bottom line is that while many features of the camera don't compare to EM 1 III, EM5 III and M1X the 16MP image quality is within a hair of the 20MP sensors in the much more expensive cameras and in some cases it is better. Olympus appears to be going backwards with the EM-1 II getting better ratings than EM1 III according to DPReview. I encourage you to go to the review section at DPReview and compare the RAW image quality results. I also suggest that you compare the results from the Sony A7C and A7 III cameras. The Sony cameras with the Sony 28-60mm zoom which works with the WWL-1B are $200.00 more than the EM-1 III and the 14-42EZ lens with dramatically superior image quality.

Housings with support for the 28-60mm zoom range from Seafrogs.hk to just about every other dealer and are common in the used market. 

   

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3 hours ago, Dani_Spain said:

Hello,

I've just bought an used EM1 Mark II in Nauticam housing. It comes with de Panasonic 8 mm fisheye and the 4.33" dome for it.

I'm thinking about buying another lenses and ports. Olympus 60 mm macro: I think it's a must. I will need the N85 Macro Port 65 (36163).

And finally I was thinking in a more versatile lens:

- At first I thought in the Olympus 14-42EZ, I'll need the Nauticam Power Zoom Macro Port 29 (about 400$). The deepshots gear costs about 60$.

First question: is it possible to use the same port for 60 mm an 14-42 with any extension ring?

- Finally I've seen great pictures with the Olympus 12-50 mm which seems really versatile. The issue is I'll need to sell a kidney for the gear and port: about 1.000$ (a little bit cheaper with the deepshots gear).

I worths the price for the 12-50 vs 14-42?

 

Thanks in advanced!

 

 

 

If you want to use the same port with extension with a 14-42 lens - the port chart shows that the Panasonic 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II lens uses the macro port 35 and you could add the 30mm tube to use the 60mm macro (30 + 35 = 65).  That Panasonic lens was tested as the best of the 14-42 lenses to use with the WWL.   I assume you are talking about using it with the WWL.  Used alone it's not that wide and doesn't focus that close.

The 12-50 is not really all that great a lens IMO, even if you have the  special port to access the the macro switch, it only gets about 0.36x with about 100mm working distance.   Plus at the 12mm end the pictures will be rather soft due to the flat port.   The 14-42 does better  at macro getting 0.6x -0.7x with the CMC-2 and CMC-1 respectively - albeit at the cost of rather limited working distance range.  The 60mm macro is a bit easier to use to get this sort of magnification and up to 1:1 magnification.

What are you trying to achieve with the a new lens?  The 60mm macro has obvious applications, the 14-42 used alone in a flat port is more a snapshot sort of lens,  it's neither wide nor macro, probably quite good for medium size fish portraits perhaps. It really only shines with the WWL, allowing scenic shots, big animals etc at the wide end and some CFWA capability  and things like sharks that don't get close enough for a fisheye at the long end.

 

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Thank you very much for your help @ChrisRoss. Reading you in other messages was important to choose the EM1 Mark II.

Finally I'll buy the 60 mm macro (I love nudibranchs and I make lot of macro). 

May be later I'll think in other options.

Sorry  @AntF for encroaching your post, but I am very interested on the lenses you were talking about.

Thanks again!

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