Re: Another one for the portfolio; questions about Nikonos

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Posted by Elaine on April 28, 2005 at 09:29:10:

In Reply to: Another one for the portfolio; questions about Nikonos posted by Dick Analog on April 28, 2005 at 07:03:01:

It is Corynactis californicia with Giant Acorn Barnacles. I don't know exactly what the tube thing is.

* Is it possible to change lenses underwater? – if so, do you sometimes?
-Can't change lenses underwater with a NicV. The close up lens attachment the fits over the 35mm or 28mm lens can be removed underwater

* You mention that on the first dive you were you were using a close-up kit, and later say that you took macro shots: do you have an actual macro lens as well? I looked on-line at lenses for the Nikonos and it appears that Nikon just offer a series of lenses of increasing focal length; I couldn’t see a macro lens per-se.
-For macro the NicV uses extension tubes and framers. The extension tubes are placed between the lenses and the camera body. The available options are 2:1, 1:1, 1:2, and 1:3. With macro the camera basically beocomes a point and shoot for whatever is in the framer - all camera settings are made topside. It is very easy except for getting critters to sit between the framer.

* What is the focal length of the wide-angle lens you use?

I usually use the housed camera for wide angle with a 20mm lens and the compact dome port.

* Do you actually look through the view finder, or do you just point for wide-angle shots and use a macro framer for the close-ups?

The NicV wide angle is a range finder camera. The 15nn lens for the NicV is one of the best optical quality lenses that has ever been made for underwater photography and is incredible. The limitation is - it is a rangefinder.

* Do you use an UW light meter, or do you generally run the camera in semi-Auto, aperture priority mode?

A light meter is really helpful on the NicV as the internal light meter is lower center weighted. I used to use a light meter a lot, not I don't. I generally look at everything, look at the internal light meters, then use the light meter in my head. The problem with light meters is they lie because they are based on the mythical 18% neutral gray. I've learned, usually successfully, to compensate for the situations where they are going to give false readings.

* Do you see used Nikonos Vs coming onto the market very often? (maybe people wanting to cash out and go digital?) At what price factor compared to a new camera body, and lenses?

There are a ton of them on ebay now at good prices. If you get one, get one in good condition. With maintenance and care, they last for a loooonnnnngggg time. Very well built underwater camera.

* And finally, a non-Nikonos question: it appears as though you’ve really got your scanner dialed-in now. Anything new? At what dpi do you typically scan your slides?

I have a CoolscanIV ED. It does 8 bit and 12 bit scans and produces 35MB files at the 8 bit setting. 2900dpi. I want the more expensive scanner, the 5000, but can't afford it right now. The 5000 has a greater dynamic range and is faster. The Nikon Scanners have better optics than most scanners. My stinking leaky roof and the aholes that stole my car for a weekend put a dent in my toy budget.

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