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Kasey

Seacam D2x housing arrives!

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22 months ago I cornered Stephen Frink at DEMA and got in line for the D2x housing. Little did we know that it would be another 18 months before Nikon released the camera. I was amongst the 1st owners of the D2x back in late Feb, and today I received the 1st production Seacam housing for that camera. Thanks again to Frink Photo for their great service and rapidfire turnaround to get this housing out to me. Liz has been wonderful to deal with - no matter how many times I change my mind on what equipment will suit me best she always seems anxious to help me determine what best suits MY needs.

 

Anyway - on with the show. I've had the housing all of a couple hours now - it'll be getting wet tomorrow. As most of you know I also own a Seacam F100 housing which is virtually attached to my right arm at this point. I love that housing, and expected no less from the D2 housing. This housing, however, exceeds my expectations in a way I didn't think was possible. Alignment of the camera in the housing I MUCH easier than it was on my F100 housing. The controls have a positive feel to them that I've never experienced in a housing. I thought the ergonomics of the F100 were perfect, but the extra space of the larger D2 housing makes the knobs easier to handle, and the shutter release has lots of room around it unlike the F100 on which you sometimes wedges your fingers under the bulkhead. THe top panel LCD also is much easier to read than on my F100 - partly due to the brighter panel of the D2.

 

I guess I'd describe it as the same old Seacam quality - done better. The window on the back of the housing is HUGE to allow full view of the LCD. This is one sexy housing if ever there was such a thing. Harald has outdone himself, and it was well worth the wait. Here are some pics of the housing for now, and hope to report on my 1st dives tomorrow!

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Thanks for that Kasey.

 

Good to know about the Rolls of housings - nice to be able to dream. Sounds (and looks) like a beautiful piece of engineering.

 

Now, where is my lotto ticket...

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Kasey - Thanks so much for your kind words, and your patience. I am very pleased to see that the housings are beginning to find their way to talented shooters like yourself.

 

I'm in Freeport tonight, just wrapping a Shark/Dolphin trip on the Shear Water out of West End. We had a D2X Seacam housing aboard this trip as well, and while I don't personally own a D2X and therefore did not have an opportunity to shoot the system, the photographer who did (Dennis Liberson) was likewise amazed at the quality. He came to the D2X from a Seacam D1X and found the new iteration greatly improved in every way.

 

As the North American distributor for Seacam I prefer not to interject beyond posting a picture of the product captured this week, but will look forward to your impressions once you have a few dives on the system.post-630-1121441920_thumb.jpg

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Hi Steve,

 

Thanks for posting. Can you attach the photo again, apparently it didn't all make it onto the server the first time.

 

Thanks

James Wiseman

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Come on Steve, tell us more. We all know you are a Seacam dealer (people only get upset when people don't reveal their affiliations) and we want to hear more about this fine machine!

 

Alex

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Hey Alex - Good to hear from you. The e-mail service here in the hotel is very spotty, so I could not post again last night. I sent a couple of JPGs to James this morning and asked him to post to this thread.

 

As for the housing, I did not use, but Dennis did for 4 days and said:

 

1. Plug and play. No muss no fuss. Just slip the camera in the housing and go shoot.

2. Very robust and precise.

3. The larger LCD on the camera is amazing to use UW.

4. All controls are a simple button push or rotary dial. All exactly aligned every time the camera goes in the housing. No "tweaking" required.

5. Gearing silky smooth.

6. There are some ergonomic features to the D2X that I like better than my Canon EOS1DsMKII, and they translate well to UW use. The ISO control for example is more intuitive. The housing (for either camera) will of course allow access to the functions of the camera, but it seems the D2X camera is extraordinarily logical. Also, the larger LCD facilitates a larger font size for the menus, therefore easier to read.

 

Dennis has offered to write a more detailed report illustrated with some of the images he captured this week from the Shear Water charter, and of course we will post herein. But, I thought his most telling comment was that the housing was "transparent" in use. Unlike most housings that require you to think about the functionallity of the housing as it translates to the the camera, this one allowed him to use the camera underwater, through the housing, like he would use it topside. His words, not mine. Then of course there are the viewfinders, which are brilliant, but that's common to all Seacam housings.

 

Alex ... this is a very cool housing. I'd love to have you dive it one day.

 

Stevepost-630-1121442351_thumb.jpgpost-630-1121442423_thumb.jpg

Edited by StephenFrink

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Hey Steve, you want to have it tried out on some mantas? Send housing and camera to Yap asap.....:D

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Send housing and camera to Yap asap.....:)

 

 

And I'll volunteer to see how it works in the lagoons of Kakadu if you can get one in my hands by Sunday AM :D:):(

 

(But I can't guarantee the crocodiles will let me give it back :) )

 

Very nice looking housing, I'll be interested to hear more from Kasey (and Dennis) about the handling, results etc etc.

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Well, I'm now back from my 1st dive with the D2 housing. Mother nature wasn't too kind to me - 3 foot surge courtesy of Emily. I wouldn't have bothered - but I knew so many of you were waiting for feedback on this housing.

 

Well, on land, this setup is HEAVY. Not the fault of the housing, though, in fact when I picked up the box at the PO I was shocked at how light it was. But add the camera, strobes, batteries, ports, etc, and it is considerably more work getting it to the water. Once in the water, though, what a surprise. With my Sea and Sea strobes, 105 +TC macro setup, the system is considerably lighter than my F100. It is perhaps 1/2 lb negative!!! PERFECT! With the long port attached the housing balanced very well. I thought my F100 was as close to perfection as a housing could be - I am amazed at the handling of this system in the water. Of all the housings I've owned or shot, this one was the 1st with which I was so comfortable so quickly. And all that in the worst diving conditions of the year :D

 

The description of a "transparent" housing couldn't be more accurate. If you are comfortable with the D2 camera, you'll be shooting this housing with comfort in no time. The wheels an buttons are exactly where you'd expect them to be, and you never need to take your hands from the handles. When you do, however, the camera balances quite well in one hand - much more so than my Seacam F100 (which was the best I've used thus far).

 

Attached are a few images. Not quite what I'd hoped to acheive on my 1st dive with this awesome setup, but as soon as the seas settle I'll be putting some quality time into my new partner.

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Can't seem to link images right now - sever denies request or something like that - will try later

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One other thing I forgot to mention. The D2 focusing is very good, but I never thought it to be a big improvement over my F100 for everyday shooting. Shooting 2:1 macro without a modeling light I realize that the improvements in the focusing system are magnificent!

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I stoped by at Stephen Frink's shop in Key Largo today and saw the Seacam for the D2x, it looks awesome, amazing. I will put it side by side with my Subal tomorrow and post something about it.

 

Luiz

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I stoped by at Stephen Frink's shop in Key Largo today and saw the Seacam for the D2x, it looks awesome, amazing. I will put it side by side with my Subal tomorrow and post something about it.

 

Luiz

 

Luiz - Thanks for stopping in, but I doubt the Seacam D2X housing will be at the studio tomorrow, sorry. I think Liz shipped it out to another one of our customers over the weekend.

 

We bought 2 housings to serve as complimentary loaners to our clients awaiting arrival of their housing from Austria. We are trying very hard to accommodate schedules for assignments and dive holidays, so I doubt the housings will sit around much until we fulfill our D2X order backlog.

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Hi,

 

Here are Kasey's images at 450 pixels wide.

 

Cheers

James

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You're a lucky guy Kasey :D

 

are there any controls that haven't been translated to the housing?

 

I too love the Seacam F100, although was always disappointed that the housing had no control for the AF area mode selector

 

Anything missing that you've noticed yet or is this one fully kitted out?

 

Enjoy !

 

Steve

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I never missed the mode selector but I did miss the ISO selector so I could bracket my TTL exposure.

 

On this housing I can't find a single useful control that has been left out!

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I had my lever retrofitted on the F100 housing, so I can use ISO. Was just a phone call and Harald sent it to me. Everything works with this baby.

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got a feeling we're going off topic 'ere, but all in the name of knowledge sharing :)

 

Custom function 11 on the F100 - set it to Sb and only auto flash bracketing is activated - you can then use the bracketing control on the housing and configure the bracketing options to your choice

 

never tried it though - so I may be wrong :D

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Sorry guys but I don't know how to post multiple images in a thread! The following 2 illustrate sunbursts. I shot these with a relatively balanced exposure - much like I would with film - as opposed to stopping way down to preserve the sunball. I think that the results are impressive. I don't find these sunballs distracting at all, and I've been looking at slides only for the past year!

 

this shot was taken at 90 ft on a choppy day with only 50ft viz and greenish water.

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Here is one only 15 ft from the surface on the same day. What I find impressive is that the sunball is relatively intact without the deeper water being badly underexposed.

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One last macro shot. You can't appreciate the detail here but if anyone wants I can email them a larger file

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Hi Kasey,

 

Thanks for posting these shots. If you upload them to your own website, you can link them into your post, instead of attaching. Let's you beat the file size limit...

 

The lady w/ the Ikelite looks familiar...:-)

 

Cheers

James

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