Just ordered a new camera (Sealife DC800 Maxx)

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by sabbath999, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. sabbath999

    sabbath999 No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Apr 11, 2007
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    Well, I just ordered a new underwater camera/flash system. I will let y'all know over time how it works.


    It's a P&S but one designed for underwater use (that is a case it is in).

    JPEG only (one serious downside)
    640x480 Movie's at 30fps
    4x optical zoom
    AF, Macro, face detection
    Full manual and a bunch of other settings
    Multiple underwater modes including External Flash Auto, Ext Flash Manual and Sea mode [with 3 color correction settings for both oceans and fresh water lakes ]
    Manual white balance with underwater white balance card included
    Two flashes (shoots automatic -- not TTL but an auto exposure system or fully manual with power settings on each flash)

    It has an interesting hyperfocal setting of about 1.5 feet to infinity underwater that doesn't require any focusing which means virtually zero shutter lag. Macro has some lag.

    The whole outfit including a wide angle attachment, custom made travel case (which is a nice feature for flying), extra batteries etc was about $1k... 2/3rds of the price was the flashes.

    The big debate in underwater photography is P&S vs. DSLR, even though it really isn't a debate... virtually everybody says DSLR's are better... but they are also a LOT bigger, bulkier and WAY more expensive.

    Put in perspective, the same type of multi light flash setup for my D300 would have cost about $4K not including the camera, and been three times as big and heavy (although weight isn't that important under water, mass is).

    DSLR's also mean you have to look through the viewfinder underwater, which is actually pretty tricky to do when you are swimming, trying to deal with current and surge, monitor your air pressure and look out for your buddy as well, trying to to bang into the reef (damaging it or you), trying not to scare off the fish and... oh yeah... little things like composition, lighting, focus and stuff like that while you are at it.

    Another problem with DSLR's is that they make models for a year or two then discontinue them... Not a big deal unless you pay $3K for an underwater case that will be obsolete at the same time the camera is.

    I figure I will get a year or two of use out of this puppy and then move up to a DSLR.

    I plan on taking some shots in the pool this weekend, but I won't see any blue water until May at the earliest. Best case this year is I get to see blue water 3 times (may, august and december).

  2. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 1, 2008
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    looks nice!
    definatly a very specialist area of photography so good luck with the new setup! :)
  3. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Mar 24, 2008
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    St. Louis

    That's looks pretty cool ...
    Like a creature looking at me.

    Look forward from seeing the photos you take with that setup.

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