Underwater Photography Article Center

OOS Photo Expedition Trip Report: Triton Bay Divers & Damai II Liveaboard

Although most divers are acquainted with Raja Ampat, remote outlying areas such as Triton Bay are not so well-traveled. In March of 2019, Optical Ocean Sales led a photo expedition diving in Triton Bay for 5 days, then joining the Damai II liveaboard for diving in Triton Bay, and continuing northwest to dive Raja Ampat, ending in Sorong. Over the course of 16 days, we would have close to 50 dives offered.

Triton Bay is one of three regions in Indonesia’s West Papua province that comprise the Bird’s Head Seascape (the other two are Raja Ampat and Cenderawasih Bay). It is now considered by marine biologists to be the epicenter of the Coral Triangle and contains more fish and coral species than anywhere else on the planet.

Whether you prefer to keep your rig as lightweight and compact as possible, or if you’re still saving up for that second strobe, there is no reason you can’t achieve high-quality imagery using only one strobe!

Release the Kraken!

How an eight-armed thief stole my one of my strobes and arms in a tug-of-war at 65'.

By Pam Treischel

The newly released Sony a7R IV is a megapixel powerhouse that includes all of the most recent advancements in autofocus (AF) capabilities and processing power. Sony listened to their customers even when it came to making small, quality of life improvements including a deeper hand grip and better weather-proofing. While there is no doubt that the a7R IV has been getting a lot of attention recently, the a7R III isn’t showing its age just yet!  

Looking to get started in underwater photography? Or are you planning to upgrade from your current system? Here are Optical Ocean's top underwater camera choices for the winter of 2019-2020.

Choosing an underwater housing for your camera in an important investment that should be an exciting step in your photography or video ventures. With different options in features, construction materials and a range in price points, it can be overwhelming to find the right housing to fit your needs. In this article we try and help simplify the decision-making process by compiling a list of what we consider the pros and cons of underwater housings made by some of the most popular manufacturers on the market. Recognizing what a housing will and will not offer can help tremendously when deciding which one is right for you. Realizing that there is not a “one size fits all” solution, our purpose is not to recommend one housing over another but to give you the information to make an informed decision for yourself.

At some point or another, underwater photographers are likely to experience a low-battery warning during a dive. Hopefully it occurs towards at the end of the dive, but for those of us unfortunate enough, the warning kicks in early and we end up carrying around a dead camera. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to improve the camera’s battery life so that dreaded low-battery warning doesn’t ruin your dive.

By Jim Lyle, OOS Customer

The TG 6 is the latest version of the popular Olympus “tough” series of cameras.  While not a huge upgrade from the TG 5, the TG 6 does have some improvements that add to its versatility underwater.We just spent three weeks in Cozumel, Mexico where I was able to play with the camera in warm, clear water.  I’m impressed!  There are a lot of detailed reviews of this camera available on the web so I won’t repeat what most of them say, just share with you my experiences and the settings I used.

The Olympus TG-6 camera paired with the Kraken Ringlight 3000 is a great compact set-up for shooting macro without the added weight and bulk of a tray, arms and strobes. The Ringlight 3000 can function as a continuous light source (up to 1800 lumens), or as a focus light with 3000 lumen burst capabilities. While using the Ringlight in continuous light mode, the camera automatically adjusts the exposure to the light output. However, when shooting in burst mode, there are some additional considerations and settings we recommend for getting well exposed images and make the most out of this compact set-up.

"So Far I'm Impressed..."

I was able to get my hands on both an Olympus TG-6 camera and PT-059 underwater housing from Optical Ocean Sales fast and at a great price despite a backlog of orders from other vendors. Of course, with a new toy, I wanted to play with it as soon as possible.

Want to Light up a Whale?

Can a single very powerful continuous underwater video light work well for stills of large animals? As the quality and output of video lights have increased, I’ve been asking myself that question.

We know that many continuous lights can work fine for macro and closer up images, although they tend to give a softer look than strobes. Strobes output a single, very high and very short energy burst of light at high intensity, this freezes detail and gives better color saturation. Lights simply can’t to do that as well. But many still photographers find that they do work well, especially when shooting both video and more casual stills.

Shining a ray of light on this new small light.

Kraken’s new Macro Snoot Light is an easy way to get into the use of directed light for underwater macro photography.
Snooting refers to the control of light through a cone, or light shaper, so that it’s used as just a small beam for more dramatic, lighting solutions.

 

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