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First dive with Magic Filter

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Hey gang...just got in from Babylon...Anyone who has dove this site knows how spectacular it is...Not the best site to try my new magic filter out but I did manage to figure it out (sort of) and get a few images. The conditions were not the greatest as surge had the bottom stirred up and the clean water was out over the wall...fairly deep...the first image:

 

depth: 47 feet

Titan/D100

Nikkor 10.5

Magic Filter

SS: 1/50

A: f5.6

post-3909-1125265283_thumb.jpg

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post-3909-1125265762_thumb.jpgHere is the second one worth a post...

 

depth: 22 feet

ss: 1/100

a:f7.1

 

I know the compositions need some work but I was just trying to figure out the WB procedure. Seemed to work well, I am very pleased with the performance of the Magic Filter. I can't wait to get back in and work with it..Not having to brave the surge and waves with arms and strobes made it a treat for a change! Thanks Alex for the advice and a Great product!!

 

Aurabest,

john

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p.s......these are straight out of the camera...just resized for posting purposes...

 

john

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Thanks John. These filters have potential eh?

And Babylon is one cracking dive site! Lucky you being so close.

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Thanks for posting John, looking forward to some more fine examples

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Well, it looks like it works. It creates a very different look without the usual darker background. I cant wait for mine to arrive.

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Thanks for posting these, John.

 

Shooting with filters does take a bit of getting used to - but I am very impressed with your first shots. Here is my advice, for what it is worth. Hope that you find it useful.

 

The colours on the first one - which I know is on the top of the pinnacle at Babylon is very impressive. That shot is right from the maximum working depth of the filter - and the colours are very good. The Orange Elephant ear sponge is amazing. The water colour is good on this shot too. You have used the ambient light well to illuminate the reef - and my main suggestion is to shoot slightly more downward to get a richer blue.

 

I think that advice also goes for the second shot, which is let down by a poor water colour. When selecting a subject try and find one that is brighter than the water - not the other way round. That will help you get a rich, deep water colour. The easiest way to achieve this is with a slightly downward camera angle. This shot is probably slightly over white balanced. Try reducing the Colour Temp a bit on ACR. Generally if you set the white balance on a scene a scene with too much blue water in you get a result like this - that the camera is trying to get rid of too much blue. In this case I would have set the WB on the seabed and then brought the camera up to get the shot. Anyway you should be able to sort this in ACR.

 

Hope that this helps.

 

Alex

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Thanks gang for the replies.....I do realize that the water in the second image is so flat, but , actually it was that color....lots of particles stirred up by the surge...I do know that I shot more straight ahead rather than down as you suggest Alex. I will keep that right in front of my mind the next time out with it....One more question about using the filter and how it works.....I have shot the 10.5 for a while and have never noticed vignetting before....the following pic was shot in a hurry with no set up at all as the eagle ray fly over our heads coming out of the pinnacle...is this a normal function of the filter? Thanks again for the quick replies!!

 

Aurabest,

john

post-3909-1125270744_thumb.jpg

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Not that I know of, John.

Yhe filter is made to precise optical qualities and the lens is designed to take gel filters so I can't see it being a problem?

 

Remember that the 10.5mm sees a long way down in the corners and I think that the dark corners at the bottom of the frame are wherre it is looking down (and into the reef, on the right).

 

But not sure. I would be interested to see.

 

Alex

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You're probably correct...thinking back on the dive and by the reef in the upper left....it is most likely the wall down below me....thanks!

 

john

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That is a super pic of that ray! It does look like natural light fall-off rather than a technical problem.

 

Thanks for the additional advice Alex on using the filters.

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I just have test the magic filter in Greece and from the first photos is exelent.

 

O.K. I shoot most freedivers agains the blue but the filter works exelent.

The visability is not great this days but if you shoot with the light the results are very good.

 

As soon as I am back I will post some photos.

Lambis

 

BTW... The 10,5 mm nikon is way a better lens for me that the 16mm

I have more keepers with the 10.5 that with the 16mm

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Good stuff Lambis! We are looking forward to the posts! I am well pleased with mine in just one test dive....the images can only get better the more you use the filter!!

 

Aurabest,

john

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I agree with you, John. It is a whole new way of shooting. And it takes time to adjust. It is not just a different way of getting colours, but it you have to put images together in a completely different way too, to realise the full potential.

 

To some extent, you could have lit both your shots with strobes, if you had wanted to, John. Filters become really good when you start producing images that you can't be lit with strobe - not just as an alternative to strobes.

 

You are using the light well to illuminate the subjects. And a more downward camera angle will get you a better blue. But remember that the foreground subject does not have to be parallel to the lens as to the same extent it does in flash lit shots. Allow the colour to extend back into the shot.

 

15m.jpg

This image would have been difficult with strobes without burning out the sand in the foreground while still getting colour on the corals and diver in the background.

 

Anyway keep posting them here and I will try and pass on my comments. Otherwise we can do a filter dive when I next see you in Cayman. I am sure others will benefit from the discussion of ideas. That was part of the motivation for putting the Magic out there - to start getting

 

Alex

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