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Interceptor121

Some thoughts about Nauticam water contact wide angle optics

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After numerous debates here I think some of the users are taking a similar position to the strobe dome issue and in my opinion confusing mechanical requirements with performance when looking at dry vs wet mount.

I have looked at the WWL-1 WACP-1 and WACP-C the construction of the glass is pretty much identical 6 elements in 5 groups what seem to change is mostly the size

The WWL-1 without float collar is 1.28 kg and ramps up to more with the new WWL-1B version.

This lens was designed initially for compact cameras but it was also tested with a Sony A7 and 28mm lens with great results.

With a weight of 1.35 kg even putting the lens on a bayonet there is substantial load on the port and this creates a torque that can be problematic for a water tight housing.

So if the weight goes up it becomes completely inpractical to have a wet mount on a thread especially if you need to have a longer port the longest port on the chart for the WWL-1 is 56mm

On the other hand larger glass may be required following the analogy with the dome when sensor size goes up. At this point you have something reaching 2KG with the included float collar it is not possible to have a wet mount you need something that can resist the torque so you go for a dry mount

In addition as the glass is bigger the entrance pupil of the lens needs to be positioned further back so the lens housing, not necessarily the glass, is also longer.

Looking at the WWL-1 with Sony 28-60mm it has a 45mm port and the lens is 97mm long total 143mm

The same lens with the WAPC-C is 145+30= 175mm

And with the WACP-1 is 176+35= 201mm

It is apparent to me is that the glass construction is almost identical and the base of the WWL-1 design this has been then been enlarged and by necessity converted to a dry mount due to weight. It is possible that the dry mount translates into a benefit as there would be less reflections however the bayonet of the WWL-1 is well designed and with the hard cap the scene is pretty dark so I think the impact of the dry mount is less than what most people think

Size instead, exactly as for domes, matters as the lens is positioned further away from the back of the water contact optics performance should improve is this directly linked to the difference in weight and cost I do not know but would like to know really for future reference.

In my mind I am thinking WWL-1 up to 2x crop WAPC-C up to 1.5x crop and WACP-1 for full frame I guess this was a very similar thinking for Nauticam too in order to have 3 flavours of what is essentially the same core design

 

 

 

 

Edited by Interceptor121
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I have the WWL-1.  It is a great lens.  I have been using it on a GH5 with 14-42mm zoom lens in flat port mostly, but also evaluating it on a Sony full frame 28-60mm lens in a flat port.  The WWL-1 has some mass and does exert a fair amount of weight/torque on these flat ports when out of the water.  I have not had any leaking issues.  Yet, I have taken to always mounting the WWL-1 on the port after I am in the water and always taking it off before I come out of the water.  You have to burp it anyway when you enter the water to remove trapped air.  I have an arch setup on the top of my housings where I can store the WWL-1 either pointing upwards or pointing forwards.  

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10 hours ago, Interceptor121 said:

In my mind I am thinking WWL-1 up to 2x crop WAPC-C up to 1.5x crop and WACP-1 for full frame I guess this was a very similar thinking for Nauticam too in order to have 3 flavours of what is essentially the same core design.

This is a decent way of thinking about the range. But I don't that the range was developed from an initial strategy, it was very much a case of one product leading to the next, highlight a gap or a need. And the success of one making the next possible.

I have been involved in various points in this story, sometimes integrally and sometimes more peripherally. Of course, from my perspective I see my points forming a direct line, while I am sure there were many turns in the road I know nothing about.

In the early 2010s I had a long chat with Edward @Edward Lai from Nauticam saying that I felt the two under-developed frontiers in underwater photography were underwater optics and high quality underwater lighting (I said the same thing on Wetpixel many times - and my first post on this forum, in 2002?, was about Ivanoff Correctors). This was at the EUDI show in Milan (just checked this was 2013 - (I had remembered Bologna) I don’t go to many dive shows!). I also joked that nobody sensible would get into strobes because there is too much to go wrong and who wants to be responsible for a product with so much to go wrong. And nobody would do optics because it was difficult computationally and prohibitively expensive for a tiny number of people who would appreciate and buy them! 

Edward took up the optical challenge and the first product was the SMC close up lens - which does some clever stuff optically maintaining a longer camera to subject distance than normal for the super high magnification and corrects for the water/air interfaces (front and back on SMC and the port) yielding sharper images. We had the prototype of that lens for the Wetpixel Workshops in Lembeh October 2013. An image I took with it on that trip was awarded in the next Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

(As a intreguing aside, I also met Oskar @Oskar@RetraUWT from Retra at that same EUDI show. He was there with a touchscreen housing for an iPad that worked underwater. I don’t remember is I spoke to him about strobes at the same event...)

Nauticam produced more macro lenses CMCs and another SMC, with water corrected optics and then ventured into wide angle with the WWL. This was aimed a M43, but after a while it was discovered it that it worked well with the diminutive 28mm on Sony FF. David Cheung (CheungyDiver on Wetpixel , RIP) was the first person I was aware of using one on Full Frame - when I met him in Palau in late 2015. 

Myself (and others) wanted to use it on FF SLRs but couldn’t make it work with the lenses. At ADEX 2016 (April) I had the chance to try and persuade Edward face to face to make a WWL for full frame. My book UWP Masterclass had just come out and I may have even written it inside the copy I signed for him! Others like, Jason from Scubazoo, were petitioning similarly.

Edward had a better idea and realised that making a “dry” at the back wetlens - made the design more optimal as there were now 2 less air to water interfaces, just one to worry about at the front. Edward’s first design for SLRs was called the “Dry Lens” to make the point that not having to worry about correcting for the problems of the air to water and then water to air interfaces at the back. I shot this development lens in the Red Sea (November 2016) and was very happy with the results. But ultimately we decided that to be able to persuade users to buy this in addition to their dome ports it needed to have a more obvious optical improvement over their existing lens - so people would notice it from their first dive and tell their friends! The development costs were pretty big and Nauticam did need to sell some, not just make one for me! That said, what would become the WACP was intended as a very low volume product, but would have to sell to people who knew their stuff and already had 230mm domes and all the wide angles. 

At the time it was designed for the Nikon 28mm fixed lens. But I was very keen to be able to use a zoom behind it and found the Nikon 28-70mm AF-D worked well. And that became the main development camera lens from there on.

These tests led to Nauticam designing a much larger version of the Dry Lens - which was called the WACP (and renamed WACP-1, when the WACP-2 was introduced). I tested a production ready version of this in the Red Sea in June 2017 and the lens started shipping that summer. By the end of the year Nauticam had real supply problems with the WACP-1 as the demand and sales was way, way higher than expected, driven by word of mouth as people used it, loved it, told others. 

MAL21_SHOW__101.thumb.jpg.b55eb9929dd1a4ba5d6aeef23b037bc5.jpg

All, bar 1 photographer on this Maldives workshop had WACP-1s. I spot quite a few of those fancy new Retra strobes too.

I have had the WACP-1 since then. But I never gave Nauticam back the original “Dry lens” because it offered better than dome port performance in a very small package. And while a step behind the WACP-1, it was smaller and lighter. I have continued to use it, particularly on trips where I do not expect to use the WACP-1 much, and want to use my luggage allowance for other items. For example I have taken the WACP-1 to Galapagos, Socorro, Maldives, Red Sea, but used the dry lens in Indonesia and Cayman. The zoom combined with the ability to shoot big animals with a more open aperture and therefore to get more strobe on them is great. I always hear people say that with big animal shots the corners don’t matter - which is rubbish - because I don’t want to shoot all my shots as subject surrounded by blue - how dull - how about shots say with foreground, background, or even the animal coming into the frame - and in all those cases corners matter. Also all these places are famed for great schools of fish - and again being able to shoot these more open aperture and have the subject matter filling all of the frame. Furthermore the small form is easier than a 230 dome in currents and much easier for CFWA lighting too as there is less shading.

The WACP-1 is particularly good for unpredictable, big animal diving (Galapagos, Cocos, Socorro, Maldives etc) and delivering professional level image quality on full frame cameras that you know you can send to any client and they won’t have anything with better quality. Nat Geo tested it and Brian Skerry switched to Nauticam housings to shoot it for his major Secrets of Whales Nat Geo/Disney story. I have had 2 images awarded in WPY taken with the WACP-1.

The sales success  of the WACP-1 surprised Nauticam and this made the WACP-2 possible. We all feared nobody would buy the WACP-1 because of the price tag. And when after a few months the orders started ramping up, not dying down, Nauticam could not match the demand, it was clear that a tier above the WACP-1 was possible. The WACP-2 is bigger and better. I’ve shot the WACP-2, but don’t want one - simply for luggage weight reasons. Also a major attraction of the WACP-1 was that is was much smaller and easier to light than a big dome, the WACP-2 was not. And also I was more interested in the EMWL, that was developed at the same time as the WACP-2. But they have been lapped up by the booming filming industry with all the commissions they are flooded with as every streaming service wants their own natural history epic! Not many stills photographers are using the WACP-2, but I had two turn up on the same workshop trip last year (there was only 9 people in total)!

So what about that original “Dry” lens? Well that is what is now the WACP-C. It’s damn good, a step up from a dome. Smaller, lighter, cheaper than a WACP-1 and not limited in compatibility like the WWL. But it is step below the WACP-1 - that’s why the WACP-1 was designed. But it is great to have the options. 

Well done for getting this far. As I said at the top, this is the history from my perspective (often unaware of the many things that I am sure happened that I wasn’t involved with). I also have tagged Edward and Oskar in this, they are both mentioned in this tale and I tag to give you reassurance I am not misrepresenting things. And perhaps most importantly, I have not done any of the clever work in terms of designing anything. I have simply tested items and give my feedback from the perspective of a user, to help create exactly the products I have long felt underwater photography would benefit from.

I wonder what is coming next?

Alex

Finally, here is Edward’s side of the story from Wetpixel Live - starts around 03:45:

 

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Nice story

I actually tested the WWL-1 prototype in mid 2015.

I provided input that led to the bayonet system and the buoyancy collar

I just looked at my old emails with Nauticam and it was already tested with the sony 28mm which is a very small lens and has a short flat port.

Initially the lens was tested on sony rx100 but Nauticam also sent me an lx100 housing to test. This camera was a compact with MFT sensor

I think the optics initially a compact camera idea proved very strong with larger formats however as I had already the inon UWL-100 with dome which wasn’t million miles away I didn’t buy the WWL-1 until I acquired the GH5 3 years later from using the lens

Am not surprised the original WWL-1 wouldn’t work with DSLR the lenses are bulky and due to the mirror the whole port is much longer

But again dry mount lenses existed since 2010-2012 but for compact cameras only

Wet lenses in general were considered toys for who could not afford a system with ports

Well not anymore

Personally for a videographer the ability to remove a lens is far more important than edges sharpness as you move and there is always some motion blur but shooting wide medium close with a very wide lens is not always ideal which is why I insisted with the bayonet idea.

When the bayonet was designed they had a delay as the adapter was not strong enough to hold the lens weight so it was redesigned

 

With the incoming extinction of DSLR and lack of native mirrorless lenses wet optics fill a market gap which is significant so am not surprised the WACP and the other models sell well as many users want to upgrade their camera and do not find even enough options

 

 

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9 hours ago, Interceptor121 said:

Nice story

I actually tested the WWL-1 prototype in mid 2015.

I provided input that led to the bayonet system and the buoyancy collar

I just looked at my old emails with Nauticam and it was already tested with the sony 28mm which is a very small lens and has a short flat port.

Initially the lens was tested on sony rx100 but Nauticam also sent me an lx100 housing to test. This camera was a compact with MFT sensor

While we all remember events from our own perspective, I was keen to stress in my tale above that many people, especially Nauticam dealers and users, were involved in these developments over the last decade. Adding feedback on developing products and explaining what they wanted. Just yesterday I shared a picture of Peter Rowlands with a harbour seal in California - shooting the WWL on his Panasonic in summer ’15.

Nauticam, I suspect, sells more dome ports than anyone, and I am sure they are more profitable than developing and designing water contact lenses. I do remember hearing that the WACP was Nauticam’s lowest profit item when released. But I am thrilled that we have these tools as options. If you would have told me 10+ years ago where we are now in terms of options I would not have believed it.

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9 minutes ago, Alex_Mustard said:

While we all remember events from our own perspective, I was keen to stress in my tale above that many people, especially Nauticam dealers and users, were involved in these developments over the last decade. Adding feedback on developing products and explaining what they wanted. Just yesterday I shared a picture of Peter Rowlands with a harbour seal in California - shooting the WWL on his Panasonic in summer ’15.

Nauticam, I suspect, sells more dome ports than anyone, and I am sure they are more profitable than developing and designing water contact lenses. I do remember hearing that the WACP was Nauticam’s lowest profit item when released. But I am thrilled that we have these tools as options. If you would have told me 10+ years ago where we are now in terms of options I would not have believed it.

I think the point that I was making is that it all started when the RX100 came about and at that time we only had Inon products. I always do my own research I for example used different combination of wet lenses from what was suggested in 2014 on the boat that you lead where I was invited by Nauticam through Alex

Most of the wet optics development comes from compact cameras and is then adapted to larger formats this is unusual as typical things go the other way around

I think many people have been shooting a Tokina 10-17mm on APSC and that filled the gap between a fisheye and wide angle rectilinear lenses that now those water contact optics cover at least partially

Tokina has just discontinued the 10-17mm I am not sure how quickly someone will produce an APSC lens with similar characteristics for mirrorless especially as Canon is not yet allowing suppliers to produce autofocus lenses and Nikon has just I think authorised a few

While you can adapt EF mount lenses to many formats like the Sony A6XXX the MFT cameras and Fuji I see that due to the evolution of the camera market with the exception of Fuji nobody is really interested in making a professional level APSC. Even the new Canon R7 though has certainly good autofocus does not have better IQ than  DSLR cameras that are now over 7 years old.

I think water contact optics align well to the fact many people are almost forced to buy a full frame camera and most mirrorless have a gap in their lens lineup due to lack of 3rd party suppliers or simply interest in making certain type of lenses.

Today Sony has the best support of 3rd party lenses due to their optics, those of Sigma, Tamron and others and yet when you go underwater you have nothing to cover the space between your rectlinear wide angle lens up to 120 degrees (with problems) and the fisheye 180 degrees. So water contact optics will no doubt become much more popular and the fact you have several choices (especially true for Sony users) for all weight and pockets is also great.

I think this is a natural evolution of the camera market, the housing market and more importantly the lenses marketplace

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The earliest wet wide angle lens I have seen myself is the VisMaster I and then II, designed by BSoUP’s Geoff Harwood in the late 1960s, early 1970s, which could be slotted in front of the standard 35mm lens on Calypsophot & Nikonos. This was a great leap forward, and is relatively simple to do (in fisheye form) and they cut and polished the elements themselves out of perspex. It was actually developed before anyone in the UK had ever used a dome port. More professionally produced options followed like the Subawider (which I was writing about earlier this week when writing the introduction to the special Martin Edge BSoUP meeting for October) , Marine Eye, FE-5 Fisheye and Sea & Sea’s Nikonos conversion lenses followed in the 1980s.

Most of the digital era wet lenses use a related optical setup to these early lenses - again making a standard lens into a wide angle in water. There was a great proliferation of these lenses for all the popular compact cameras (Olympus, then Canon) from the early 2000s, and they were very widely used here on Wetpixel in that golden age of 2-6MP underwater compacts! The RX 100 was introduced over a decade later. 

These wet lenses varied, some were crappy lenses and some very decent (I think owing more to the quality of the components, rather than design differences). What differentiated the WWL was that it set out to design not just a wet lens that would make the view wider, but to properly correct all the optical issues (aberrations and field curvature - most wet lenses have field curvature the same as domes) using proper lens designing software to tweak each element. So while fundamentally using a similar set up of lenses, the way they interact is fixing problems. The result is a lens that is both a wet lens and a water contact lens (ie one where the details of the lens design was optimised to correct the image quality problems of working in water.) 

Of course, making water contact or properly underwater corrected lenses was also not new. Nikon did it for their wide angle (20 and 15mm) lenses for the Nikonos viewfinder cameras. And the 13mm fisheye, 28mm and 20-35mm for the RS. But just used flat ports on their longer lenses. But the specialist underwater companies could not do such expensive development and the extensive calculations. The software availability converged with a company with the resources in Nauticam, hence why the I believe the WWL is a real landmark lens in underwater photography - and the family of WACPs it spawned. 

Of course, water contact has become a marketing term. So now everything is called water contact...

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5 hours ago, Alex_Mustard said:

The earliest wet wide angle lens I have seen myself is the VisMaster I and then II, designed by BSoUP’s Geoff Harwood in the late 1960s, early 1970s, which could be slotted in front of the standard 35mm lens on Calypsophot & Nikonos. This was a great leap forward, and is relatively simple to do (in fisheye form) and they cut and polished the elements themselves out of perspex. It was actually developed before anyone in the UK had ever used a dome port. More professionally produced options followed like the Subawider (which I was writing about earlier this week when writing the introduction to the special Martin Edge BSoUP meeting for October) , Marine Eye, FE-5 Fisheye and Sea & Sea’s Nikonos conversion lenses followed in the 1980s.

Most of the digital era wet lenses use a related optical setup to these early lenses - again making a standard lens into a wide angle in water. There was a great proliferation of these lenses for all the popular compact cameras (Olympus, then Canon) from the early 2000s, and they were very widely used here on Wetpixel in that golden age of 2-6MP underwater compacts! The RX 100 was introduced over a decade later. 

These wet lenses varied, some were crappy lenses and some very decent (I think owing more to the quality of the components, rather than design differences). What differentiated the WWL was that it set out to design not just a wet lens that would make the view wider, but to properly correct all the optical issues (aberrations and field curvature - most wet lenses have field curvature the same as domes) using proper lens designing software to tweak each element. So while fundamentally using a similar set up of lenses, the way they interact is fixing problems. The result is a lens that is both a wet lens and a water contact lens (ie one where the details of the lens design was optimised to correct the image quality problems of working in water.) 

Of course, making water contact or properly underwater corrected lenses was also not new. Nikon did it for their wide angle (20 and 15mm) lenses for the Nikonos viewfinder cameras. And the 13mm fisheye, 28mm and 20-35mm for the RS. But just used flat ports on their longer lenses. But the specialist underwater companies could not do such expensive development and the extensive calculations. The software availability converged with a company with the resources in Nauticam, hence why the I believe the WWL is a real landmark lens in underwater photography - and the family of WACPs it spawned. 

Of course, water contact has become a marketing term. So now everything is called water contact...

When I said everything started I mean some meaningful volumes.

Many things remain experiments for a very long time and to be frank credit to Inon whose lenses were actually pretty good to make this a more popular option.

It is good that those solutions that have some kind of popularity have made it to the market before the compact camera has been pronounced effectively dead otherwise probably many things would have remain pilot stage

To be completely honest I am amazed how small our community is and how little weight we have in the camera market so it is a good situation to have devices that can beat traditional solutions and are available sometimes at competitive cost. 

Going back to my initial reflection I think the guideline WWL -> MFT WACP-C -> APSC and WACP-1 -> full frame broadly holds

However I am sure some people will consider the WACP-C based on weight more than cost. Nauticam may have introduced a size factor instead of a crop factor in that lens design

WACP-2 different story optical design is different less demagnification more emphasis on pure correction I do not see that becoming easily as popular as the others but I see who shoots underwater cinema may prefer that to massive domes

 

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The Nikonos 28 UW lens for the original Nikonos system was the first Nikon water contact optic. I believe the UW in the name is Nikon-speak for water contact optic; used in the RS as well. The RS lenses are labeled R-UW. There was a scientific journal article about the 28 published in the 60s if I recall correctly.

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When I first used the WWL-1  prototype in March of 2015 it was with an Olympus M43 camera and 14-42 zoom lens. You can see in the attached review (upper right) that the lens mount looked much different than the final WWL-1 at retail release. Not sure if this is the same prototype design that 121 used later in the year but I think we all recommended some type of buoyancy device and a better bayonet mounting system, I am sure Peter Rowlands and I did. Later in the year or early 2016 Nauticam USA allowed me to take the lens to Cozumel for three weeks to use with a Sony full frame mirrorless system and the Sony FE 28mm F/2. I found the results from the 28mm 130 degrees superior to the M43 system at 14mm 130 degrees. I think for Sony full frame users the 28-60mm has added a great deal of flexibility to the Sony full frame systems. The 28-60 pairs very well with WWL-1/1B, WACP-C and WACP-1. I have used the WACP-1 with the Sony FE 28-70, 28-60 and Tamron 28-75 F/2.8 and my first choice would be the 28-60 because of it speed in auto focusing and overall image quality. With the WACP-2 I wanted to use the stellar Sony 14mm F/1.8 which has both a fast aperture and AF speed. Because it requires an N100 to N120 25mm port adaptor which I could not source I was only able to use it with the Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8  which does not take advantage of the full 140 degree AOV. I received the WACP-C only days before a non-diving four week trip out of the US. This lens also appears to work very well with the Sony 28-60 during the limited time I have had the lens.

As Alex has said each of use who have been able to use all of the wet wide lenses with a verity of primes and zooms have varying experiences and preferences regarding what combination works best for them. I think for me based on limited use that WACP-C will be my choice for Sony full frame along with the three Sony lens (28mm, 28-70 and 28-60) that I already own.

  

WWL-1_114.jpg

Edited by Phil Rudin

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The Nikonos 28 UW lens for the original Nikonos system was the first Nikon water contact optic. I believe the UW in the name is Nikon-speak for water contact optic; used in the RS as well. The RS lenses are labeled R-UW. There was a scientific journal article about the 28 published in the 60s if I recall correctly.

Those however are mechanical devices with no electronic They do not address the issue of modern cameras and are manual focus only
So I think it is not the same thing as the equivalent resolution of a film camera was around 2000 lpw


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When I first used the WWL-1  prototype in March of 2015 it was with an Olympus M43 camera and 14-42 zoom lens. You can see in the attached review (upper right) that the lens mount looked much different than the final WWL-1 at retail release. Not sure if this is the same prototype design that 121 used later in the year but I think we all recommended some type of buoyancy device and a better bayonet mounting system, I am sure Peter Rowlands and I did. Later in the year or early 2016 Nauticam USA allowed me to take the lens to Cozumel for three weeks to use with a Sony full frame mirrorless system and the Sony FE 28mm F/2. I found the results from the 28mm 130 degrees superior to the M43 system at 14mm 130 degrees. I think for Sony full frame users the 28-60mm has added a great deal of flexibility to the Sony full frame systems. The 28-60 pairs very well with WWL-1/1B, WACP-C and WACP-1. I have used the WACP-1 with the Sony FE 28-70, 28-60 and Tamron 28-75 F/2.8 and my first choice would be the 28-60 because of it speed in auto focusing and overall image quality. With the WACP-2 I wanted to use the stellar Sony 14mm F/1.8 which has both a fast aperture and AF speed. Because it requires an N100 to N120 25mm port adaptor which I could not source I was only able to use it with the Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8  which does not take advantage of the full 140 degree AOV. I received the WACP-C only days before a non-diving four week trip out of the US. This lens also appears to work very well with the Sony 28-60 during the limited time I have had the lens.
As Alex has said each of use who have been able to use all of the wet wide lenses with a verity of primes and zooms have varying experiences and preferences regarding what combination works best for them. I think for me based on limited use that WACP-C will be my choice for Sony full frame along with the three Sony lens (28mm, 28-70 and 28-60) that I already own.
  
WWL-1_114.thumb.jpg.1d3a84e17ae95fcc6ec0cbbaddd2c63c.jpg

The initial lens had an m67 mount this is now submerged by the collar of the wwl-1b
The original wwl-1 has a float made of devynilcell or whatever is called with some screws this came out some time later
The bayonet was a discussion about reusing inon LD mount however the lens was larger and the torque higher
With regards to quality it is down to the lens the olympus zoom you tested is very average best result were with the panasonic 14-42mm non power zoom but this was not supported and had no zoom gear however I had already worked out the 35 port fitted and made a 3d printed gear
Yet this is a cheap 5 blades lens vs the 7 of the sony 28mm that is also a prime


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Again the prototype I used is pictured in the attached article and if you read the text you will see I used the Panasonic 14-42 power zoom lens because that was the system I was given to assess and provide feedback. Since you tested the lens a few months later I am not sure if you had a more updated version than the one I used.

When I reviewed the WWL-1 with the Sony A7R III and Sony FE 28mm F/2 that is also he system I was provided. The fact that the image quality was better with the higher resolution camera and higher quality lens is not an indictment of the M43 lenses or  EM-1 it is just a simple statement of fact. Further WWL-1 is excellent for full frame cameras like Sony A7C using the high quality Sony FE 28-60mm zoom. It will also works well on high MP cameras like A7R IV and A-1 so while I understand the premise of WWL-1 M43, WACP-C APS-C and WACP-1 full frame all three wet wide lenses work very well on full frame given the correct camera lens combinations.   

I think what is important for many readers to understand is that Nauticam put a lot of time, energy and expense into this and the following projects. They also reached out for feedback from a well rounded group of users world wide before releasing the finished version.  

Edited by Phil Rudin

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4 hours ago, Phil Rudin said:

Again the prototype I used is pictured in the attached article and if you read the text you will see I used the Panasonic 14-42 power zoom lens because that was the system I was given to assess and provide feedback. Since you tested the lens a few months later I am not sure if you had a more updated version than the one I used.

When I reviewed the WWL-1 with the Sony A7R III and Sony FE 28mm F/2 that is also he system I was provided. The fact that the image quality was better with the higher resolution camera and higher quality lens is not an indictment of the M43 lenses or  EM-1 it is just a simple statement of fact. Further WWL-1 is excellent for full frame cameras like Sony A7C using the high quality Sony FE 28-60mm zoom. It will also works well on high MP cameras like A7R IV and A-1 so while I understand the premise of WWL-1 M43, WACP-C APS-C and WACP-1 full frame all three wet wide lenses work very well on full frame given the correct camera lens combinations.   

I think what is important for many readers to understand is that Nauticam put a lot of time, energy and expense into this and the following projects. They also reached out for feedback from a well rounded group of users world wide before releasing the finished version.  

Yes the powerzoom lens was the one I was given it to test with the newest macro port 29 but I used that lens on land and I knew it was not the best hence I used the 14-42mm Mega OIS. Much better performance.

Nauticam did the job as it has to be done and consulted a variety of people. I am not a pro like yourselves but I know a thing or two about camera and wet lenses so they decided to contact me as well. It went on for months actually between the first prototype, the lx100 housing and the bayonet system. The float collar I did not see until later on

What it is important to understand is that while the lens may correct the additional issue that water gives to the optics it does not improve the lens itself

To give an idea the 28mm f/2 on a ATRII 42megapixels has a resolution of 60 lpmm the 14-24 PZ has a resolution also of 60 lpmm however the sensor is 1.8 taller and so is the resolution hence in the centre this set up will trash the MFT camera as it happens on lens regardless of the wet lens you use. The olympus 14-42mm is even weaker.

When it comes to the edges the situation will change though and the gap will close.

However the same lens on APSC has a lower resolution of 50 lpmm and therefore the gap is almost none as the sensor is not much bigger

In essence the various systems performance is unaffected by the water contact optics

Today there is pretty much zero gap between MFT and APSC in terms of resolution until fuji released the 40 megapixel camera all APSC at 20-24 megapixels do not provide large gap. Full frame however has a benefit even at lower resolution as it is easier to make higher quality optics with longer focal length.

What I am saying is that the same full frame camera will progressively improve from wwl-1 to wacp-1 but at which point will there be a gap you can actually measure depends on you as the optic is not improving the lens is just correcting the impact of water on the lens.

On the other hand in the frame centre none of those optics will beat a better lens in the center in any format as there no corrections are needed but of course as you go off centre the situation changes

 

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