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aussie_bubbles

Sony a7Siii and Aquatica combo

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Starting a thread for Aquatica / Sony a7Siii users. I know that I'll have questions and so might others. As we use gear we discover quirks, hacks and workarounds and it will be useful to find a pool of people using this setup. 

My a7Siii housing just arrived and I'm baffled by the port options. I've come from the Aquatica / a7iii. The housings schematics in both manuals describe two 16mm port and one 1/2 inch port.

My a7Siii housing has has more like a 1inch port and something smaller on the top (maybe a 14mm port?). When I attempted to take off the vacuum system and to thread it on the bottom port so I could use the top one for the monitor I noticed it was a different size and wouldn't fit on the bottom. Then I noticed that the top "16mm" wasn't a 16mm and the monitor wouldn't fit there anyway.

Anyone else have this issue? I'm wondering whether I was accidentally shipped a custom build housing.

 

Other observations:

I noticed that Aquatica has upgraded their vacuum system. No complaints with that. I prefer the newer style. I was always worried that I'd drop and break the tip on the previous generation pump. 

If wanting to use a monitor you will have to remove the HDMI door on the a7Siii to get access to the HDMI input. The camera doesn't fit in the housing when the door is open due to Sony's new designs. I found a youtube video on how to do this and you have to then buy silicon plugs to cover the HDMI port for when you use the camera on land and want to protect the HDMI thingy.  The door/flap removal is not something you'd do every time you dive because you have to remove/replace 6 tiny screws to do this. (Apparently the new a7vi door isn't removable so watch how housing copy with this if you ever plan to use a monitor with that camera model. I asked Aquatica a few weeks ago and they hadn't noticed this detail, so presumably will be thinking about it before they launch the housing.)

 

***Side wondering.... I'm curious about the utility of having a port under the housing? It would make the camera lopsided if you threaded anything in there. As mentioned I attempted to put vacuum system there because its better then trying to thread the monitor cable through there and is didn't fit. Given it fits on the top "16mm" but not on the bottom "16mm" was how I discovered that the port are different sizes

Anyway... hope this starts a discussion and we can help each other out as we dive with this setup. 

 

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...and also.... what is this?

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A long time ago I made the mistake of using the bulkhead at the bottom of an Aquatica housing to connect to a monitor of a different brand. However, a video cable going downwards will get too much strain irrespective of how carefully you try handle your camera gear in a dive boat. My cable broke after a few dives. Lesson learned.

Concerning bulkhead hole sizes, Aquatica video cabling has options for 1/2", 16mm (face seal) and 23.75mm (or 1" threaded). Without actually measuring it, my guess is that the bulkhead holes on the top of your housing would be 1/2" and 23.75mm. Based on Aquatica's product pictures of the 20093 housing, the 23.75mm port seems to be standard, i.e. not custom like you suspected. The 16mm bulkhead size can be considered for using a Aquatica monitor with some other brand housings and vice versa.

 

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I always had amazing support from Aquatica, have you tried to reach to them to got some pointers on your setup?

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15 hours ago, r4e said:

A long time ago I made the mistake of using the bulkhead at the bottom of an Aquatica housing to connect to a monitor of a different brand. However, a video cable going downwards will get too much strain irrespective of how carefully you try handle your camera gear in a dive boat. My cable broke after a few dives. Lesson learned.

Concerning bulkhead hole sizes, Aquatica video cabling has options for 1/2", 16mm (face seal) and 23.75mm (or 1" threaded). Without actually measuring it, my guess is that the bulkhead holes on the top of your housing would be 1/2" and 23.75mm. Based on Aquatica's product pictures of the 20093 housing, the 23.75mm port seems to be standard, i.e. not custom like you suspected. The 16mm bulkhead size can be considered for using a Aquatica monitor with some other brand housings and vice versa.

 

Hi Aussie bubbles,

That is a blanking plug. We currently use the same housing body (front and back) for our A7RIV, A7SIII, A1 and our soon to be released A7IV. 

This hole on the top of the housing is used for the top dial on the A1 camera.

Thank you!

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7 hours ago, Carolina A. said:

Hi Aussie bubbles,

That is a blanking plug. We currently use the same housing body (front and back) for our A7RIV, A7SIII, A1 and our soon to be released A7IV. 

This hole on the top of the housing is used for the top dial on the A1 camera.

Thank you!

Hi Carolina,

Does this mean the Aquatica A1 housing can also be used with the A7SIII and A7 IV bodies? Or will the new A7 IV housing be 'backwards compatible' with other current-generation Sony bodies?

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14 hours ago, Carolina A. said:

Hi Aussie bubbles,

That is a blanking plug. We currently use the same housing body (front and back) for our A7RIV, A7SIII, A1 and our soon to be released A7IV. 

This hole on the top of the housing is used for the top dial on the A1 camera.

Thank you!

Hey Caroline, 

Thanks for getting back to me.

So if my understanding is correct, the 1/2 inch port (on top) is for the vacuum system. There is a 16mm port on the bottom, and the 16mm that used to be on the top is now a 1 inch blanking plug that can be used for converting the aS7iii to the a1.

Digital diver is sending me an adaptor that looks like it converts this 1 inch port back into a 16mm port. That way I should be able to connect my monitor on the top. 

Thanks again for the help and responses. 

Duncan

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On 5/8/2022 at 12:01 PM, dreifish said:

Hi Carolina,

Does this mean the Aquatica A1 housing can also be used with the A7SIII and A7 IV bodies? Or will the new A7 IV housing be 'backwards compatible' with other current-generation Sony bodies?

Hi Dreifish, 

Let me speak to engineering and I will get back to you.

Carolina

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Hi Dreifish,

There are some other housing brands that offer compatibility between Sony a1 and a7SIII with a small up/downgrade kit. The main difference is in the dimensions and positioning of the camera tray. Plus some pushbuttons have slightly different spacing distance. Functionally the biggest difference is the location of the video start/stop button. However, in Sony you can reprogram the normal stills trigger to start/stop video recording. If I remember correctly, the last difference relates to the autofocus button.

Let's see what Aquatica answers.

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On 5/8/2022 at 12:01 PM, dreifish said:

Hi Carolina,

Does this mean the Aquatica A1 housing can also be used with the A7SIII and A7 IV bodies? Or will the new A7 IV housing be 'backwards compatible' with other current-generation Sony bodies?

Hi Dreifish,

Our current production for Sony housings(front and rear shell), is the one that has the extra hole on the top left off the front shell, can be assembled to make A1, A7SIII or A7RIV models,and most likely our new A7IV.

Each camera model will need it’s own unique saddle/camera tray and a few other internal parts to make it work in this housing model.

Our original A7RIV housing model can also be used for the A7SIII but not for the A1 because it does not have the extra hole on top.

Hope this helps ;)

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So if I were to purchase a current model A1 housing for instance, could I buy an additional saddle/camera tray to fit the A7SIII or A7RIV? Or are some of those components welded to the interior of the housing?

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5 hours ago, dreifish said:

So if I were to purchase a current model A1 housing for instance, could I buy an additional saddle/camera tray to fit the A7SIII or A7RIV? Or are some of those components welded to the interior of the housing?

Aquatica said they have a conversion pack you could get to use the a1 in the a7siii housing. Blake said some folk were ordering the a7siii housing, but asking for the a1 stamp on it so when prices come down and they could afford the a1, they could switch. Not sure whether converting is so simple that you could swap out camera bodies between dives. 

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