I use a Sony PC100 which does make also still-video pictures a a Sony memory stick. With 1,2 M pixels the quality of the pictures is reasonal good. The opportunity to be able to make both pictures and video does bring difficult situation where I have to decide. Still or video?
Using a 32 Mb memory stcik I can store quite some picture on Hi-resolution, which is to me the only usable setting. As you can view and delete pictures with the camera this hold all pictures of one holiday which stand my selection criteria. My computer (a Sony Vaio PCV-201 desktop) does have a buildin memory stickreader, so tranfering picture is no more difficult than copying them to another drive.
Press this button to see a 5 minute UW-video
"donker water, vol leven en kleur: Oosterschelde"
Note: on the 14the Spondyle foto and Film festival this video was awarded with the 3 place in the category 'video'. The complete film will be shown on www.duiken.tv
This video a extract of my first large production. As it is despite compression a 28 Mbyte file it may (depending on your bandwith) take a while to download.
mentioned in my personal profile I started making OW-video's and
photo's early 2001. I had earlier experiences with photography both
as hobby as well as (semi) professional. The ‘technical’
backgrounds where therefore not completely new to me. I also had
developed a 'windowed' view, which helps a lot finding good
compositions. This however turned out to be a handicap in the
beginning as it resulted in ‘static’ shot's. Later I tried to
realize a little more movement in my shots.
was quite a surprise that there is not much information about UW
video available. Being the first diver with a video camera in my
direct surrounding I had to experiment a lot with lights, software
etc. Today I have reached a level where I'm reasonable happy
with the results. Have a look for yourself in the video section.
Video or Photography?
have noticed that there is a gap of 16 years between my first dive
and starting making UW-videos. There are several reasons: however
there are many beautiful underwater photos available, they seldom
really catch the atmosphere you encounter during your dives. The
sparkling light patterns on the reef, the waves moving the uw-live
etc. Admiring the many uw-documentaries (like Cousteau’s) I wanted
moving pictures. For me, a video does give you more vivid memories,
including sound and movement.
both video equipment as well as the possibilities to edit your
material to an acceptable result where at that time quite expensive
and not really ‘transportable’. But lucky enough the world has
changed. Despite the fact you still need a filled wallet to
start….. video equipment, uw-houses, computers and video-editing
software are available in many different tastes and budgets.
advantage of digital video (or photo’s) is that you can judge your
material direct during or after the dive. And you will not have to
spoil material and monet as you can delete and write your tapes and
memory over and over…
said earlier, please be aware that you have to prepare you’re
investment commission (in my case that was my wife)… It starts
with a camera, a housing, uw-lights followed by (above water
equipment) as a new PC and editing software package………. And
many other gadgets you will find useful to create the wanted
uw-photography and video do ask really good diving skills. You have
be able to control your byouncy perfectly. Fishes do have the habit
to hide themselves between the corals and you will find yourself
standing upside down to take that one special specimen you have
dreamed about. And off course you and I are the type of divers which
do not want to make a nice shot at all costs. So we are careful not
touching the reef.
Easy of use is one of the advantages of all digital camera’s regardless they are video or photo camera’s. Almost all modern cameras do have auto focus and auto exposure. So no calculations about shutter times, f-stops, distance etc are mandatory. Of course there is still the subject of framing, light location and that intangible, artistic talent, but those remain a constant whether you are shooting video or stills.
any doubt digital is the way to go these days. Thereby most
video cameras do have the possibility to take both videos and
stills! Considering size of the cameras, the easy of printing,
editing and distributing the final results there is only one advice
possible: do not consider a analog camera, buy a digital camera! I
did go for a midrange camera and came home with a Sony PC-100! www.sony.com
Housing: Be aware that there are more cameras types than housings. So before you make a final decision on a camera, make sure you can buy a housing you fancy for the camera of your choice. I selected after a long search along shop’s and websites a Sealux housing. www.sealux.de
Video Lights: In the ‘dark’ water surrounding the
lights are quite expensive. They come in many types from 800 up to
1.500 euro. I started with a set nice small lights form fa-mi. www.fa-mi.com
The design is great. I however did not have much luck with them. After
a while (during my appointment at the local distributor) I switched
to two Green-Force PRO lights with solux bulbs (as they provide
great white light) with FLEXI-II accutanks. Have a look at www.divequipment.nl
is on its place! Despite the fact video editing on a PC looks (and
is relative) easy, please be aware that it will test your patience.
One minute clean final cut video will take at least about 1,5 hours
is where Digital Video (DV) offers significant advantages:
- You can
edit your video on your PC, using a popular editing program
will almost no quality loss, when copying your video from and to
your DV tape.
- You can input your raw video from the camera, make cuts, arrange fragments, add transitions, add titles and sound and store the final results.