Underwater Photography News

Nauticam GX1 housing announced for the Panasonic GX1

Scott Gietler
Nauticam proudly announces the NA-GX1 Housing for Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

Nauticam Housing for Panasonic Lumix GX1 announced

Nauticam proudly announces the NA-GX1 underwater housing for Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

 

 
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Nauticam proudly announces the Nauticam NA-GX1 underwater housing for Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1. The GX1 is a high-end mirrorless camera that offers a small size, fast focusing and great image quality.

This housing is introduced at a new, aggressive price point for Nauticam housings, meaning that people who otherwise might have been forced to settle for a lesser camera or housing now have the option to shoot the best imaging m4/3 camera available in a rugged, machined aluminum housing with unmatched ergonomics.

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX1

 

 

 

The Panasonic GX1 represents a new model line for Panasonic, but the camera has a fine heritage to build on, taking the best from the popular GF1 and merging it with the advanced features and functionality of the G3. The result is a small but powerful imager with the controls needed for effective manual shooting.
 
GX1 boasts the highest resolution m4/3 sensor available today, a 16 megapixel “Live MOS Sensor”, combined with advanced processing to boost ISO as high as 12800. The camera also features a 460,000 dot 3” TFT LCD, 4.2fps still shooting (up to 20fs at lower resolution) and 1080i 60fps AVCHD video. GX1 supports manual, program, aperture priority, shutter speed priority, auto, and a multitude of other exposure modes. Metering is accomplished via a TTL capable 144 zone multi-pattern system with 18EV range. Several white balance modes are available including 2 custom white balance settings, and white balance performance has been enhanced in GX1 over previous m4/3 cameras.
 
 
 

Nauticam NA-GX1 Housing overview

 
Nauticam housings have become renowned for their innovative ergonomics, style and functionality. The NA-GX1 housing from Nauticam is no exception, delivering all of the advanced functionality of the GX1 in an ergonomic system at a new and lower price point. This is a very compact and lightweight housing, with all of the key GX1 camera controls available from the ergonomic grip sculpted into the side of the housing. A choice of hand strap and left/right handle means the shooter can customize the housing to meet their specific needs.
 
The patented mini locking port release system used in other Nauticam mid-range housings has been incorporated into NA-GX1, allowing easy and secure port changes. Ports are available for the major lenses that are useful underwater, including the Lumix 14-42mm kit lens, the Lumix G Fisheye 8mm, Lumix 7-14mm, and the Panasonic Leica 45mm macro lens. A port (Macro Port 35 – p/n 36139) and zoom mechanism (p/n 36146) for the new Panasonic Lumix G X Vario PZ 14-42mm are introduced at this time as well.
 
 
 
 
 
 
The sculpted housing fits the GX1 camera perfectly - the camera is quickly mounted in the housing via a snap in camera tray, and the housing is securely closed with a locking rotary latch.
 
Nauticam housings are designed with ergonomics in mind, and this housing puts all of the important controls on the camera within easy reach. The shutter release is sculpted into the housing itself, landing the right index perfectly on the button. A four-way controller with set button is easily reached from the right. The record button is easily accessed on top of the housing, and zoom is conveniently accessed from the left side of the housing. NA-GX1 also features an audible and visual leak detector, mounting hole on housing, and cold shoe accessory mount. 
 
 
 

Nauticam GX1 ports

 

 

 

The port system for NA-GX1 expands upon the existing port system for the NEX-5 housing, adding additional ports for the Panasonic Lumix m4/3 lenses. Olympus m4/3 lenses and Leica m4/3 lenses can be used with this camera as well, further expanding the lens choices. Lenses initially supported include the Lumix 14-42mm, the Lumix PZ 14-42mm, Lumix 14mm/2.5, Lumix 8mm Fisheye, Lumix 7-14mm, Leica 45mm macro, Olympus 14-42mm, and Olympus 9-18mm. Zoom gears are available for the zoom lenses listed. The macro ports include a standard 67mm threaded mounting point for adding accessory wet lenses. 
 
 
 

Locking Rotary Latch

 
The housing back is sealed with an easy to operate safety clasp. A safety release button must be pressed in order to begin rotating the clasp, eliminating the chance of accidental opening.
 
 
 

Nauticam GX1 Build Quality

 
Only the finest materials and cutting edge manufacturing processes are used to make Nauticam housings.  The housing body is machined from solid aircraft grade aluminum, then hard anodized making it impervious to salt water. The flat ports are optically coated glass. The large acrylic LCD window is treated with an anti-reflective, scratch resistant coating.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Light and Accessory Mounting, Trays and Handles

 
Mounting lights, strobes and other accessories is a breeze with Nauticam housings. Nauticam now offers a full range of mounting hardware, including camera trays, arms, clamps, strobe adapters, and other specialized mounting hardware. Mounting options on the NA-GX1 include mounting balls or t-plates on the tray handles, mounting balls or t-plates on the housing, and an accessory cold shoe on the housing. There are myriad ways to mount just about any light or other accessory. 
 
Nauticam uses a sophisticated over-mold process to produce extremely comfortable rubberized ergonomic handgrips on handles. The soft feel and ergonomic design make the housing easy to grip and minimize hand fatigue on long dives.  Both single and double handle configurations are available for complete customization, and each handle can be adjusted laterally allowing the user to dial in perfect fit. A hand strap is also available for those wishing an even smaller profile, and lanyards are available to keep the housing attached when needed.
 
 

Optical Flash Connectors for Inon S-TTL, and Sea & Sea DS-TTL

 
Reliable automatic flash exposure is available with Nauticam housings and a variety of optically fired flashes. Underwater strobes such as the Inon Z-240, D-2000, S-2000, Sea & Sea YS-110 Alpha, and YS-01 strobes provide automated lighting, precisely reproducing the camera’s onboard flash at a proportionally greater intensity.  This system yields accurate TTL flash performance with no electrical sync cables to flood! With the GX1, optical TTL is enhanced even more since the GX1 can perform TTL in manual exposure mode. Ikelite strobes can also be fired with an optional Ikelite fiber optic adapter.
 
Specifications
 
  •       Depth Rating:  100m
  •       178mm x 129mm x 85mm 
  •       Weight: 0.95kg (2.1 lbs.)
 
Model Number:  17705
USA Retail Price: $1,200
Estimated Shipping Date: April 14th, 2012
More information is available from our sister site Bluewater Photo's Nauticam GX1 page.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Support the Underwater Photography Guide

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your Nauticam GX1 housing through our sister site, Bluewater Photo and Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Canon 5D MK III specs and comparison

Scott Gietler
Canon 5D MK III specs and comparison with the Nikon D800 & 5D MK II

Canon 5D MK III comparison chart

A look at Canon's latest full-frame camera, compared with the Nikon D800 and Canon 5D MK II

By Scott Gietler

 
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The Canon 5D Mark III has just been announced, which replaced the 3 1/4 year old 5D MK II. In the Canon 5D Mark III, Canon has made some major improvements from the Canon 5D MK II, especially in the areas of auto-focus and high ISO performance – and is sure to appeal to professionals shooting  sports, weddings, and low-light action. It inherits many of the great features of the Canon 1DX, as they share the same Digic 5 image processor.

However, for people not locked into lenses, the newly announced 36MP Nikon D800 offers some very serious competition, especially for wildlife and underwater photographers.

canon 5d mk iii camera, specs, compared with Nikon d800

Canon 5D MK III price and release date

The camera is expected to be available at the end of March, 2012 at a price of $3,499 for the body, or $4,299 with the 24-105mm f/4L zoom lens. The Nikon D800 body is a little less at $2,999 - and the 5D MK II can now be picked up for just $2,199.

 

Key improvements of the 5D MK III over the Canon 5D MK II

  • # of Auto-focus points boosted from 9 to 61
  • High ISO performance increased by up to 2 stops; the 5D MK III can be "boosted" to ISO 102,400
  • Shooting speed increased from 4fps to 6fps
  • Video limit increased to 30 minutes
  • In-camera HDR mode added
  • Adds 720p video at 60fps, for slow-motion video
  • Adds a quiet shooting mode
  • Dual card slots. Supports SD cards as well as CF
  • New, higher price!

 

 

 

 Canon 5D MK III  

  Nikon D800  

 Canon 5D MK II 

Min Aperture  for auto-focus1

F5.6

F8

F5.6

AF Points

61 points

51 points

9 points

Megapixels

22.3

36.3

21.1

Shooting speed

6fps

4.6fps

3.9fps

Sync speed

1/200th

1/250th

1/200th

Built-in flash

No

Yes

No

Max ISO5

25,600

6400

6400

USB

USB 2.0

USB 3.0

USB 2.0

Auto-focus during  video

No

Yes4

No

Shutter Rating

150,000

200,000

150,000

Uncompressed video

No

Yes

No

60fps video

720p, 60fps

720p, 60fps

none

Video modes

1080p, 24/25/30fps

1080p, 24/25/30fps

1080p, 24/25/30fps

Weight3

950g

1,000g

907g

Price

$3,499

$2,999

$2,1992

 

  1. Min aperture for auto-focus is important when using teleconverters
  2. This camera was $2,699 in early 2009
  3. Weight with battery & card
  4. It remains to be seen how useful the auto-focus is during video, it was not great on the D7000
  5. The ISO can be "boosted" by 2 more stops on all of these camera model

 

Comparing the 5D MK III and the Nikon D800

The Canon 5D MK III and the Nikon D800 are quite similar in size, weight, sensor size, LCD, viewfinder, storage media, video resolution, battery life, and weather sealing. Both can do in-camera HDR (high-dynamic range photos).

The main differences are listed in the table above. The Canon 5D Mark III has the advantage of being able to shoot at very high ISOs, and a faster shooting speed, due to its lower megapixel count and fast image processor.

The Nikon D800 has the advantage in other areas including megapixel count, auto-focus ability with teleconverters (for example - you can use autofocus with a F4 lens + 2x teleconverter with the D800), having an internal flash, and sync speed. The internal flash and sync speed may be useful for some underwater photographers.

I expect to see Canon 5D MK III underwater housings from Aquatica, Hugyfot, Ikelite, Nauticam, Sea & Sea, Seacam & Subal - and I predict that both the Canon 5D MK III and the Nikon D800 will be very popular with both professional and serious amateur underwater photographers.

 

Further Reading

Comparing the Nikon D800 with the Nikon D700 and Nikon D4

Comparing the Nikon D4 with the Nikon D3s and Canon 1DX

Canon 5D Mark III Review

 

 

Where to Buy

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo & Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Adobe Lightroom 4 released, with video editing

Scott Gietler
Adobe Lightroom 4 released, with video editing for just $149

Adobe Lightroom 4 Released

Included video editing, better shadow & highlight recovery

By Scott Gietler

 
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Adobe Lightroom 4.0 has just been announced, after a 2 month beta period, for $149. This is half the price of Lightroom 3! Users upgrading & students pay just $79. Lightroom is a great tool for photographers to edit, organize, and catalog their photos.

 

 

 

Here are some of the exciting new features in Lightroom 4.0:

  • Adjustment controls that maximize dynamic range from cameras, recover exceptional shadow details and highlights.

  • Ability to catalog video clips alongside images, and adds basic editing capabilities, such as the ability to play and trim clips, make adjustments and export frames / stills from videos

  • Improved auto adjustments to dynamically set values for exposure and contrast

  • Additional local adjustment controls including Noise Reduction, Moire and White Balance

  • Presets that take advantage of new processing technology for speedy results

  • Soft proofing that helps photographers tune images in a destination color space to ensure content looks its best.

  • Ability to email images directly from Lightroom using an email account of your choice

  • Photo book creation

 

I'm excited to try out the new adjustment controls, and to try out the video editing on my D7000 underwater videos! Lightroom is quickly becoming a must-have for both professional photographers and serious amateurs.

Download and Class info

Lightroom can be downloaded here. Our partner Bluewater Photo offers great Lightroom classes each month in Santa Monica, CA.

 


Support the Underwater Photography Guide

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo and Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Nikon D800 specs and comparison

Scott Gietler
36 Megapixels, wow! Nikon D800 specs, and comparison with the Nikon D700 and D4

Nikon D800 comparison

36 Megapixels, wow!

Takes on medium-format cameras, same size as D700

ISO more limited than the D4, sells for $2,999

By Scott Gietler

 

 
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Nikon has released another full frame camera, the Nikon D800, which is the successor to the Nikon D700. Nikon has decided to emphasize pixels over ultra-high ISO performance. This camera competes with the Canon 5D Mark III.

 

Here's some highlights of the new Nikon D800

  • Offers 15.4 megapixels at a 1.5x crop
  • Offers 1080p high def video at 30/24fps, 720p at 60/30fps
  • ISO range 100-6400
  • Takes CF & SD cards
  • Speed limited to 4fps
  • Auto-focuses at F8 like the Nikon D4 does, great for teleconverters!

nikon d80 specifications and comparison to Nikon D700 and Nikon D4

This camera does not have any obvious compeition (but it will when the 5D MK III comes out soon), and for sure will sell many, many times more than the NIkon D4 will. Now the question is how many photographers really need 36 megapixels? And have lenses that will resolve them? Regardless, downsampling a 36 megapixel sensor to 10 or 20 megapixels will produce excellent results - and this is a much better camera than the Nikon D700, which came out in late 2008. This will be an excellent camera for landscape, studio and wildlife photographers.

 

  Nikon D4 Nikon D800 Nikon D700 5D MK III
Megapixels 16.2 36 12 22.3
Video 1080p30, 720p60 1080p30, 720p60  NA 1080p30, 720p60
Shooting Speed 10 fps 4 fps, 5fps in crop mode 5fps 6fps
Memory CF, XQD CF, SD CF CF, SD
Autofocus 51 points 51 points 51 points 61 points
Cost $6,000 $2,999 $2,699 $3,499
LCD 3.2 inch 3.2 inch 3 inch 3.2 inch
ISO Range up to 204,800 up to 25,600 up to 25,600 up to 102,400
RAW Buffer Size, 12 bit 98 ?? 20 35
Viewfinder magnification .70x .72x .72x .71x
Video limit 20 minutes 30 minutes NA 30 minutes
Viewfinder coverage 100% 100% 95% 100%
Size Big Small Small Small
Build quality Great Great Great Great

Here are some other Nikon D800 specs and interesting features:

  • Autofocuses with F8 lenses, which means the autofocus will work better in lower light. This is good news for people who like to use teleconverters.
  • New 91,000 pixel metering sensor - which is used mainly for measuring exposure, detecting faces, etc.
  • Video clips up to 30 minutes long
  • Mic in, headphone out with adjustable levels, just like the D4
  • uncompressed 4:2:2 HDMI video out available
  • supports USB 3.0, D700 supported USD 2.0
  • Video can be recorded in 1.5x crop mode, very nice!
  • Can take time-lapse movies
  • Shoots HDR in-camera
  • Shutter rated to 200,000 actuations
  • 1/8000th shutter speed like the D700 & D4

Nikon D800 underwater housings

I'm expecting housings from Subal, Nexus, Aquatica, Sea & Sea, Nauticam, and Seacam, and Hugyfot. The Nauticam D800 housing has already been made available for pre-order.

D800E & D800 Shipping Date

The Nikon D800 is expected to ship at the end of March. The Nikon D800E costs $300 more, and has the anti-aliasing filter removed, for pros who know what that does. Basically, you can get slightly sharper images - at the risk of some false colors and moire.

 

Comparing the Nikon D800 with the Canon 5D Mark III

  • The NIkon D800 has many more megapixels, autofocus at F8, has an internal flash and a higher sync speed (1/250th)
  • The 22 megapixel Canon 5D Mk III has 2 stops better high ISO performance, and faster shooting (6fps vs 4fps)

Promotional video*, "Joy Ride," shot entirely with the D800

 

 

 

"Behind the Scenes" of "Joy Ride"

*video courtesy of nikonrumors.com

 

What do you think of the new Nikon D800?

Tell us in the forums

 

Further Reading

Nikon D7100 mini review

Ikelite D800 housing mini review

 

Where to Buy

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your Nikon D800 underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo & Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Nikon Announces P310

Michael Zeigler
Nikon announced the Coolpix P310 earlier this morning.

Nikon Coolpix P310 Announced

Faster lens and higher ISO are highlighted in the announcement

By Michael Zeigler

 

 
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Just earlier today, Nikon announced the Coolpix P310. Its 4.2x (24-100mm) focal length may not deliver the big bad zoom of the newly-announced P510, and it can't do RAW like the P7100 or the Canon S95/S100.  It does, however, feature improved image stabilization, which Nikon says will let you take blur-free handheld shots at four stops below what would otherwise be possible. There's also a fast f/1.8 maximum aperture, which will further aid low-light shooting as well shallow depth-of-field shots.

 

 

The Nikon Coolpix P310 will be available in February

 

The camera's backside-illuminated (BSI) CMOS sensor should offer improved performance in low-light situations, which you'll be able to see nicely on the camera's 3-inch high, 921,000-dot LCD screen. 1080p video capture at 30fps is also on board, along with in-camera editing software for completing your home videos right on the camera itself. Looking very much like Nikon's answer to the popular Canon S100, the P310 however, does not offer RAW, which could limit its use underwater. 

Another important addition to the P310 is the function (Fn) button on the right-hand side of the lens, which we're told will work like an assignable hot-key, giving quick access to your choice of setting. For example, if you expect that a shot is going to demand quick ISO adjustment, you'll be able to assign that to the function key -- a feature that should go some way to making up for the relatively minimal (e.g. compared to the P7100) controls on the back.

This camera should be released in February at a suggested retail price of $329.95.

 

 


Support the Underwater Photography Guide

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo and Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Canon New Compact G1X Camera Unveiled

Eric Aubort
Canon announces the G1X compact camera

Canon Unveils the New G1X Compact Camera

The G1X has been fitted with a large sensor to compete with mirrorless compact cameras

by Eric Aubort

 
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Ideal for photography enthusiasts looking for the highest image quality in a compact, point-and-shoot design, the Canon PowerShot G1 X camera features the largest sensor to date for a Canon point-and-shoot model - and could be a great option for people not looking to change lenses.

 

Read our new Canon G1X Review

 

Canon G1X Key Features

  • Slightly larger sensor than a mirrorless camera - very nice!
  • Slightly larger body that a mirrorless camera
  • F2.8-F5.8 28mm-112mm non-changeable lens
  • poor macro cability, but this may be fixable with a diopter
  • 1/2000th sync speed - very nice for using a fill flash in bright conditions
  • Articulated LCD screen
  • Built-in image stabilization, claiming 4 stops improvement
  • 14 megapixel sensor
  • Battery rated for 250 shots (without flash), not great
  • $799 retail price

The G1X

Larger Sensor

  • The camera has a brand new, large 1.5-inch (18.7 x 14mm), 14.3-megapixel High-Sensitivity Canon CMOS sensor
  • Delivering shallow depth of field and a wide dynamic range
  • ISO range of up to 12800 and incredible light gathering ability helping to ensure brilliant images in even tough low-light conditions.

Image of Canon G1X sensor-Courtesy of Canon USA.

 

  • The new 1.5" sensor is six times larger than Canon's latest G12 model.

 

The Lens

  • 4X Optical Zoom
  • An aperture of f/2.8 to f/16 for beautiful images when shooting portraits and amazing clarity when shooting landscapes
  • Wide-angle capabilities starting at 28mm
  • Poor macro capability without a diopter, close focus distance is 20cm at 28mm, 85cm at 112mm

 

 

Shooting Formats

  • 14-bit, RAW+JPEG shooting
  • HDR Shooting has been included to ensure the best possible shot is captured
  • Full HD 1080p video

 

Accessories

  • Speedlite, Macro Twin Lite or the Macro Ring Light flashes

 

 

LCD Screen and Controls

  • Bright, large 3.0-inch vari-angle LCD with 922,000 dots of resolution
  • The inclusion of the Mode Dial on the top of the camera and the Front Dial helps provide more intuitive control of the camera.

Rotational LCD Screen

 

 

 

Back View

 

 

Top View

 

Features and Specifications:

  • 14.3mp CMOS (1.5inch) Sensor (1/1.5″ probably)
  • 4x Zoom (28-112)
  • f/2.5-16
  • 14bit RAW
  • DIGIC 5
  • 6fps/4.5fps
  • Multiarea White Balance
  • HDR Mode
  • FullHD 1080p Video
  • 720P Movie Digest Mode

 

Estimated Price: $800.00

Estimated Delivery: February 2012

 

Click  below to see Canon's promotional video for the G1X:

 

 

Questions or Comments?  Post in our Forums

 


Support the Underwater Photography Guide

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo & Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

Nikon D4 specs and comparison

Scott Gietler
It's out! Nikon D4 specs, and comparison with the Nikon D3 and Canon 1D-X

Nikon D4 comparison

$6,000 price tag, ISO maxes out at ISO 204,800

Sony XQD mem card, Nikon 85mm lens also announced

By Scott Gietler

 

 
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Nikon has released another full frame camera, the Nikon D4, which is the successor to the Nikon D3s. It is not often you find a camera that will be more expensive than the underwater housings, but that will probably be the case here. Pro underwater photographers are sure to set themselves apart with one of these. Improvements in this model were made not so much in the still photography area, but there are huge improvements for video & low-light shooting, and there other nice features that specialized pros who buy this camera will appreciate.

Here's some of my favorite improvements in the Nikon D4. I'd love to take this camera on an African safari!

  • Can shoot at 10 frames per second with auto-focus
  • Can auto-focus at F8, which means I can use it with my Nikon 200-400mm VR and a 2x teleconverter
  • Excellent RAW buffer, filling up after 90 shots with a new XDQ format card
  • Megapixels increased to 16MB

nikon d4 specifications and comparison to Canon 1D-X and Nikon D3s

This camera competes with the Canon EOS 1DX, and it looks like it will beat it to the market. Let's see how it compares with that camera and the D3s which it replaces:

 

  Nikon D4 Nikon D3S Canon EOS 1DX
Megapixels 16.2 12.1 18.1
Video 1080p30, 720p60 720p24 1080p30, 720p60
Shooting Speed 10 fps 9 fps 12 fps
Memory CF, XQD dual CF dual CF
Autofocus 51 points 51 points 61 points
Cost $6,000 $4,900 $6,800
LCD 3.2 inch 3 inch 3.2 inch
ISO Range up to 204,800 up to 102,400 up to 204,800
RAW Buffer Size, 12 bit 98 48 40-45?
Viewfinder magnification .70x .70x .76x
Video limit 20 minutes 5 minutes 30 minutes
Ethernet port? Yes No Yes
Size Big Big Big
Build quality Great Great Great

note: I left out many of the specs because they are pretty much the same between the models

The Nikon D4 also has some other cool features that the specs don't capture:

  • Autofocuses with F8 lenses, which means the autofocus will work better in lower light. This is good news for people who like to use teleconverters.
  • Time lapse function that will create video from stills
  • New 91,000 pixel metering sensor - which is used mainly for measuring exposure, detecting faces, etc.
  • Silent mode for 2 megabyte frame grabs at 24 per second
  • Built-in ethernet wired networking and HTTP webserver mode for remote control
  • Accepts new Sony XQD cards which boast a write speed of 125MB/sec; currently some CF flash cards claims write speed of 90MB/sec; note that this camera has only 1 CF slot, and 1 XQD slot
  • Claims "clean" shots up to ISO 12,800
  • Tracks up to 16 faces
  • Video clips up to 20 minutes long
  • Video date rate of up to 24Mbps
  • Can stream uncompressed HD video via the HDMI output
  • Mic in, headphone out with adjustable levels (first dSLR to have this feature)
  • Switch to 1.5x crop or 2.7x crop in video mode for extra reach without any post-processing
  • Controls were improved for vertical shooting
  • Shutter rated to 400,000 actuations
  • Burst shooting capable of 52 14-bit RAW files

I'm expecting housings from perhaps Subal, Aquatica, Sea & Sea, Nauticam, and Seacam - but only time will tell if they will all make one.

The Nikon D4 is expected to ship at the end of February.

New NIkon 85mm AF-S F1.8 lens

Nikon also announced the new full-frame, lightweight Nikon 85mm AF-S F1.8 lens for $499. I'm sure it takes beautiful photos. With a minimum focus distance of 2.6ft, few people will be using this lens for underwater photography - it won't take macro shots without a strong diopter, but it wil give you some great bokeh.

What do you think of the new Nikon D4?

Tell us in the forums

Underwater housings for the Nikon D4

The Nauticam D4 housing has already been announced, and should be available at the end of April. Hugyfot and Subal will also have a housing.

Further Reading

Comparing the Nikon D800 with the D700 & Nikon D4

Comparing the Canon 5D Mark III with the 5D MK II and the Nikon D800

 

Where to Buy

Please support the Underwater Photography Guide by purchasing your underwater photography gear through our sister site, Bluewater Photo & Video. Click, or call them at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


 

California Market Squid Run

Eric Aubort
Market Squid mating off California shores have recently been observed by divers. We share photos and video from this exciting event.

Market Squid Run Observed off California Shores

Underwater photos and video of this amazing event

by Eric Aubort

 
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Many Southern California divers have reported and recorded a massive amount of Market Squid just off the local beaches, making for some great photo and video opportunities.  Reports have come in from Catalina, Vet's Park in Redondo Beach, La Jolla Shores, and more.

 

 

 

"Mating squid during their last moments of life.  Taken in roughly 50fsw at Indian Head Rock, Catalina Island."  Nikon D90 in an Ikelite housing, Tokina 10-17mm lens behind a 5" Precision Dome port, 1/125th, F11, ISO 200 at 14mm. Photo by Michael Zeigler, editor of Underwater Photography Guide.

 

Close-up of squid egg case at Indian Head Rock, Catalina Island by Michael Zeigler.  "You can make out the eyes of the tiny, developing squid, and some are starting to show signs of purplish pigment spots."  Nikon D90 in an Ikelite housing, 60mm + 1.4 teleconverter, 1/125th, F22, ISO 200.

 

Market Squid information from NOAA

  • The Market Squid or Pacific Loligo / Loligo opalescensis a fast growing species with a relatively short life span.  Approximately 12-14 months.

  • Range:   Southern tip of Baja California to southeastern Alaska. Most abundant between Punta Eugenia, Baja California and Monterey Bay, California.

  • Food:   As juveniles, squid feed on copepods (small crustaceans). As they grow, they feed on krill and other small crustaceans, small fish, and other squid.

  • Maximum size:  Approximately 12" including arms

  • Reproduction:   Market squid are terminal spawners – they spawn and then die. Spawning squid concentrate in dense schools near spawning grounds. As seen in the picture above by Michael Zeigler.

  • Spawning Season:   Year-round. In southern California, spawning usually begins during fall-spring. Off central California, spawning normally begins in the spring-fall. Off Oregon, spawning has been observed from May to July. Off Washington and Canada, spawning normally begins in late summer.

  • Spawning Grounds:   Spawning occurs over a wide depth range. Known spawning areas include shallow, semi-protected nearshore areas with sandy or mud bottoms adjacent to submarine canyons where fishing occurs. Specific habitat requirements for spawning are not well understood.

  • Regulation:  The California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) actively manages the market squid fishery consistent with federal fishery management guidelines through a seasonal catch limit, time and seasonal closures, and a permit system. The CDFG and NOAA Fisheries Service also cooperatively monitor and conduct research on the species and fishery.

  • In the last decade, increases in catch and price have combined to make market squid the most valuable fishery in California.

 

Commercial Squid Fishing

On a recent night dive in Laguna Beach California, I observed many large fishing vessels approximately 200-300 yards off shore.  There was a vessel anchored off almost every street from Main Beach south to Pearl Street.  The vessels use very bright lights to attract the squid and purse seines to harvest squid. Scoop nets are also used in the southern California fishery.

 

Roger Uzun recently took this awesome video titled "Night of the Cephs," illustrating the squid run and other marine life that benefits from it.

 

 

 

Catalina west end

Mike Bartick, staff writer for Underwater Photography Guide, recently observed the market squid at Catalina Island.

"The day we experienced the squid run on the west end of Catalina was nothing short of incredible. The fields of egg baskets were endless and vast. Densely packed mounds of white cigar-shaped tubes filled with eggs. The squids were everywhere and at times there were so many of them that it was hard to see the back of my camera. After discussing a few shots, my friend Terry decided to model for me.

Having experienced partial or mini squid runs over the years has always been exciting, and diving in December is always punctuated by the opportunity. La Jolla Shores, Vets Park and a few other places on the mainland are pretty predictable for runs, and once they begin it's important to get out there and experience it right away.


Bat rays, lobster, and crabs can be seen wandering aimlessly gorged by the sudden windfall of available food. The squid are everywhere, dying and being consumed while others mate and lay the eggs, the pace is frantic and near fever pitch.

I have never had the experience of seeing the squid in and around the kelp like this before. Normally they tend to be out over the sand flats but I was lucky enough to have the kelp in the background.


I feel fortunate and lucky to see such an abundance of life and to witness the incredible lifecycle of the squid run. I think 2012 will go into the books as one of the great squid run years."

 

A bat ray cruises over the masses of squid eggs and dead squid at Catalina's west end. Nikon D300, Tokina 10-17mm FE lens, and two YS250 pro strobes. Photo by Mike Bartick

 

Mike's model, Terry, and a pair of mating squid. Nikon D300, Tokina 10-17mm FE lens, and two YS250 pro strobes. Photo by Mike Bartick

 

More mating squid at Catalina's west end. "I have never had the experience of seeing the squid in and around the kelp like this before. Normally they tend to be out over the sand flats but I was lucky enough to have the kelp in the background." Nikon D300, Tokina 10-17mm FE lens, and two YS250 pro strobes. Photo by Mike Bartick.

 

 

Further reading

 

 


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Silhouettes Underwater App Now Available

Michael Zeigler
Professional underwater photographers David Fleetham and Marty Snyderman have collaborated to bring you this first app in a series.

Silhouettes Underwater App Now Available in iTunes App Store

First app in a series of Underwater Photography Training Applications for iPad/iPhone

By Michael Zeigler

 

 
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The first in a series of five training applications, Silhouettes Underwater is the collaboration of professional underwater photographers David Fleetham and Marty Snyderman, designed and developed by Joel Penner of Newmediasoup, LLC.  Compatible with iPad and iPhone, this training application contains eight sections of tips to improve your silhouettes underwater, photos taken by both David and Marty along with additional training slides.  This training App is also narrated, has zoom capability on all training images, and has left-to-right/ right-to-left swipe technology. This application is available for download in The App Store.

 

 

About the developers

David Fleetham has been a professional underwater photographer for over 30 years.  He is frequently asked to shoot underwater assignments for various national and international publications, and is a regular contributor to many international scuba diving magazines.  David has also been teaching underwater photography for his entire career.  For more information about David, please visit: http://www.davidfleetham.com

Marty Snyderman is a still photographer, film producer, author and speaker specializing in the marine environment.  He also serves as the Marine Life Editor for Dive Training Magazine.  Teaching underwater photography workshops around the world, Marty has also authored nine books on marine life and marine issues.  For more information about Marty, please visit: http://www.martysnyderman.com

Joel Penner is the owner and Creative Director of Newmediasoup, LLC, a multimedia design company in Oakland, CA.  He is also an underwater photographer and videographer.  For more information about Joel, please visit: http://www.newmediasoup.com

LAUPS International photo comp winners announced

Scott Gietler
Winning photos from the LAUPS 2011 International underwater photo competition

LAUPS 2011 International Underwater Photo Competition

Winners announced, stunning octopus shot gets best of show

By Scott Gietler

 
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The 49th annual LAUPS international underwater photo & video competition produced some stunning winners. Congratulations to all the winners! The competition was limited to non-professional underwater photographers, except for the open category. Judging the competition was Erin Quigley, Jason Bradley, and Chris Gug.
 

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

Best of Show, Octopus over/under shot, "View from the Gulf"

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

Open Category winner, "Sargassum"

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

First place Wide-angle, False killer whales & dolphin

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

First place macro, Lionfish

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

First place behavior, "Hungry worm". Editors note - a fire worm on top appears to be grabbing the starfish

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

First place coldwater, "Sunstar"

 

 

LAUPS 2011 international underwater photo competiton winners

First place photo essay, "Doublet"

 

 

BEST OF SHOW

Pasquale Vassallo
Napoli, Italy
"View from the Gulf"

 

OPEN

Keri Wilk
Mississauga, Ontario, CANADA
"Sargassum"

 

Category - WIDE-ANGLE

1st Place: Clark Miller
"False Killer Whales & Dolphin"
2nd Place: Eduardo Acevedo
"Sky Lion"
3rd Place: Francis Perez
"Odontaspis Ferox"

4th Place: Francis Perez
"Castle of Basalt"
5th Place: Allison Vitsky
"Anemone"
Honorable Mention: David Antoja
"Jellyfish"

 

Category - MACRO

1st Place: Phil Sokol
"Lionfish"
2nd Place: Rand McMeins
"Sea Pen with a Flea"
3rd Place: Domenico Roscigno
"In the Shade"

4th Place: Denis Palbiani
"Magic"
5th Place: Tony Cherbas
"Quicksilver"
Honorable Mention: Maxim Tomashevich
"From The Darkness"

Honorable Mention: Eduardo Acevedo
"Visitor"
   

Category - BEHAVIOR

1st Place: Borut Furlan
"Hungry Worm"
2nd Place: Denis Palbiani
"Cleaning"
3rd Place: Tony Frank
"Two Nudis with Eggs"

4th Place: Borut Furlan
"Big Meal"
5th Place: Uwe Schmolke
"Dental Service"
 
Honorable Mention: Denis Palbiani
"Large Vacuum"
Honorable Mention: Denis Palbiani
"Collectors"
 

Category - COLD WATER

1st Place: Allison Vitsky
"Sunstar"
2nd Place: Michele Davino
"Rumble"
3rd Place: Luc Rooman
"Pike"

5th Place: Luc Rooman
"Lumpsucker with Eggs"

 

Category - PHOTO ESSAY

1st Place: Francis Perez
"Doublet"
2nd Place: Jose Alejandro Alvarez
"Sperm Whale Encounters"

3rd Place: Tony Cherbas
"Partners in Crime"
Honorable Mention: Jeremy Kozman
"Scenes from the Solomon Islands"

 

VIDEO OPEN

1st Place: Nannette Van Antwerp
"Pacific Drifters"
2nd Place: Walter Marti
"Ocean Worms"

3rd Place: Anastasia Laity
"The Philippines: Beauties & Beasts"
4th Place: Walter Marti
"The Removal"

 

VIDEO RAW FOOTAGE

1st Place: Kenneth Ward
"Octopus Catches a Fish"
2nd Place: Matthew Berry
"Snake Eel Spinning"
3rd Place: Anastasia Laity
"Guadalupe Fur Sea Chasing Great White"

 

4th Place: Walter Marti
"Cuttlefish"
Honorable Mention: Xavier Michalet
"Torpedo Ray"
  

Complete set of winning photos & videos can be seen here.

Keep an eye on the Underwater Photography Guide website! The Ocean Art 2011 winners will be announced very very soon. Here are last year's winners.

 

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