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cindybindy
01-07-2009, 10:59
Hi,
I will be heading to Cozumel in February to do some diving and am looking at a new digital camera. I have an older Sealife and am now looking at the DC800. Has anyone used this camera and how do you feel about it? I am not new to digital cameras but want something fairly easy to use and get pretty good pictures. Thanks.

DougNR
01-07-2009, 14:16
While I do not have the camera, like you I'm considering getting one. If you have the most recent Scuba Diver magazine, there is a sidebar in the photography column written I believe by Steven Frink. It was given a thumbs up for usability and screen size.

Let us know what you decide.

Doug

DevilDiver
01-08-2009, 08:22
I wanted to add to this thread, all though I do no own this camera I have owned the DC 500 & The DC 600 and handled the DC 800.

This is a very nice set up for a beginner to intermediate photographer. As with all UW package kits this type type of camera is a good choice for someone looking for a system that takes the guess work out of what strobes, tray & arms they should purchase.

As with all the Sealife cameras it has basic controls that take a lot of the guess work out of how to capture great UW photographs. While this camera will not give you total control (witch is not the best choice for everyone) the preset settings can and will produce outstanding photographs.

So basically if you shoot a higher end camera (SLR,DSLR or compact) now and are used to f-stops/shutter speeds and having total control in dealing with the lighting in your environment this would not be the best choice for you.

If you are newer to UW photography or just want to keep it simple you should defiantly take a good look at this system and compare to similar options to choose the best for you.

CWSWine
01-08-2009, 11:38
I just received my yesterday so I have not gotten wet yet. I will say it is built like a tank. I was concerned with some of the others that on a boat or traveling they look like they arms could be get bent or the plastic case could be easily damage. The one with one flash comes with a soft carry case that hold both the camera and the flash plus a couple of pockets for the cables and stuff. Seams of be easy to use but the real test will be next week in Playa.

Desert_Diver
01-09-2009, 01:44
I got the DC800 from our hosts. I took it to Palau and Yap with me. I give it an overall thumbs up. The camera that I replaced with the DC 800 was the Sea Life DC 300. The 800 does NOT need a wide angle lens. A major improvement. The 800 does macro without auxillary lenses. A major improvement.

One thing that I was mildly disappointed with was the "auto flash". According to the instruction booklet, the DC 800 is supposed to automatically set the flash intensity for the picture you are taking. In my opinion, this doesn't work very well. On the other hand, it only took me a few tries to figure out what settings to use on the flash in the manual mode. My pictures with manual flash settings were satisfactory to me.

I am still learning things about the camera but basically I am pleased with it. But be advised, underwater photography verges on mental illness. I started out with a Sea Life point and shoot using 35 mm film. At the time, it matched my skill level nicely. The DC800 is my third camera. I strongly suspect that at some point, I will want to do things that the DC800 won't be capable of. Eventually, I know that I will have one of those camera, multiple strobe units that you will ask the boat crew to lower to you after you are in the water. And the crew will have to use a winch. :smiley5:

Oh. And it will cost you a small fortune to buy. :smiley19:

But in all honesty, I have a screaming blast with my camera.

Art

CWSWine
01-09-2009, 09:10
Desert_Diver

I have not been able to get mine wet yet so I don't know the buoyancy of the camera with one flash. On ST site they have a weight that attaches to the camera’s bottom mount but I didn't see any mention of it in the manual. Would you recommend picking one up since I leave for Playa on the 16th.

Dennis

DevilDiver
01-09-2009, 12:55
Desert_Diver

I have not been able to get mine wet yet so I don't know the buoyancy of the camera with one flash. On ST site they have a weight that attaches to the camera’s bottom mount but I didn't see any mention of it in the manual. Would you recommend picking one up since I leave for Playa on the 16th.

Dennis


You should not need the weight for your kit. The strobe should be enough to make the set up slightly negative in the water. You should make sure that you have some fresh moisture munchers for your trip though.

If you have a chance to get the camera in the pool before your trip you should be able to get an idea of how it will handle. It would be a good idea to test the housing in the pool as well before you submerge with the camera.

CWSWine
01-09-2009, 13:13
Thanks for the information. Give a review on it when I get back.

Desert_Diver
01-09-2009, 14:34
Desert_Diver

I have not been able to get mine wet yet so I don't know the buoyancy of the camera with one flash. On ST site they have a weight that attaches to the camera’s bottom mount but I didn't see any mention of it in the manual. Would you recommend picking one up since I leave for Playa on the 16th.

Dennis

With strobe, the DC800 is positively buoyant. I keep the camera clipped to a coiled slinky type bungee cord. When you get task loaded, or need two hand to do something, you can release the camera and retreive it at you liesure. I don't use a snorkle, so there isn't anything for it to foul when you let it go.

The buoyancy is not an issue if you want to hold the camera in one hand and hang on for dear life to a rock in high current.

THREAD HIJACK: I graduated from K-State about a hundred years ago. I was glad to hear they are bringing Bill Snyder back.
THREAD HIJACK CONCLUDED.

Art

Desert_Diver
01-09-2009, 14:41
Desert_Diver

I have not been able to get mine wet yet so I don't know the buoyancy of the camera with one flash. On ST site they have a weight that attaches to the camera’s bottom mount but I didn't see any mention of it in the manual. Would you recommend picking one up since I leave for Playa on the 16th.

Dennis


You should not need the weight for your kit. The strobe should be enough to make the set up slightly negative in the water. You should make sure that you have some fresh moisture munchers for your trip though.

If you have a chance to get the camera in the pool before your trip you should be able to get an idea of how it will handle. It would be a good idea to test the housing in the pool as well before you submerge with the camera.

Good point about the moisture munchers. And make sure they are packaged in the foil packets. In the old days, it was not uncommon to get new moisture munchers that were already pink when you first opened them.

Even with the strobe (just one, not two), my camera was + buoyant in salt water.

Another good point about the leak test/bubble test in fresh water. Immerse the HOUSING without the camera initially. Check for bubbles. Dry the housing and use compressed air if you have it available. Open both housing AND strobe and check for leakage.

I got my DC800 just before my Palau trip. I took it for a fresh water dive and flooded the strobe. The good folk at Scuba Toys replaced in time for the trip by very prompt action and I got great pics at Palau and Yap. Kudos to Joe and Larry.

Art

reeldive
01-10-2009, 18:48
Have had my DC800 for one trip so far. Got some great shots with it. Check out my picasa gallery Picasa Web Albums - Wilbur - Mona Island, ... (http://picasaweb.google.com/Will2dive/MonaIslandPuertoRicoDecmber2008)#

Had it on it's first night divenight dive last night. Got a couple of good shots with it. The auto strobe settings do seem to over do but most of my shots were macro due to the 2-3ft viz. Cold water and gloves prevented playing with settings much. I think I'd do better in the Manual Srobe mode with ISO set to 100, aperature f 5.3 and shutter speed to 1/125 or faster. This camera doesn't give you a lot of control over aperuture (f 2.7 or f 5.3) but these are the most used from my experience with borrowed high end cameras. The camera and the strobe are both positive buoyant so use the tether. Night focus needs some sort of light source that can be turned off or redirected when you shoot, unlike the DC500 with that little red box that it projects on your subject, and that can be a bit tricky.

A great point and shoot for beginer to intermediate photographer.

Good luck and have fun

firstdive2005
01-11-2009, 13:46
I flooded my dc600 and bought the dc800. I attached the two strobes from the 600 to the 800 and off I went. So much better. The trigger is the best upgrade. Also being able to switch to video faster is great. About the bouyancy, I bought the weight for it, however the longer screw knob is not long enough to attached the weight to the overlapping camera mount. I need to get a single mount to hold both strobes and the weight. I saw in a thread someone had one made and dipped so he did not need the weight attached. I will be doing that and then selling the left over parts from the original setup. But for now I tape the weight to my strobe holder and the camera rig is neutral now. But for me, as just a point and shooter, I just love how this camera makes me look like I know what I'm doing when my friends come over for the picture show night when I get home.
Also Scubatoys is looking after my flooded 600 as I write this. And you know what, I bought it elsewhere, man have they ever earned my loyalty. I did buy the 800 from Scubatoys. What blows my mind about that also is, I live in Edmonton Canada and I phoned them in the morning, the next freakin day the camera was at my doorstep. Normal freight. I phoned them to thank them and asked them if the shop was actually behind my house. lol

reeldive
01-11-2009, 18:45
http://forum.scubatoys.com/gallery/files/1/1/4/4/pict0030_thumb.jpg (http://forum.scubatoys.com/gallery/showimage.php?i=2035&catid=member&imageuser=1144)


Here's one of my shots from Friday night

firstdive2005
01-13-2009, 23:53
Looks like the crab was checking him out

reeldive
01-14-2009, 18:34
There were large arrow crabs every where. Also plenty of stone crabs. some sargasum algae has taken hold in the areaand we saw small lined seahoarses in the sargasum. Realy an awesome dive even thouhg the viz was 3' or less. I've done plenty of night dives in far more exotic places but this dive was one to remember

Mitch200
01-22-2009, 11:24
I've been looking at either the DC800 or the 1200HD as an upgrade from my old DC100. Can't seem to get past the price points and for the money the Sealife seems like a much better deal for the someone moving from beginner to intermediate point and shoot type photographer.

Based on some browsing, it appears that the DC800 is the Minox DC8011. Not too much out there on the Minox.

Any thoughts on the DC800 versus the Sea & Sea 1200hd?

Cheers

DevilDiver
01-22-2009, 11:58
I've been looking at either the DC800 or the 1200HD as an upgrade from my old DC100. Can't seem to get past the price points and for the money the Sealife seems like a much better deal for the someone moving from beginner to intermediate point and shoot type photographer.

Based on some browsing, it appears that the DC800 is the Minox DC8011. Not too much out there on the Minox.

Any thoughts on the DC800 versus the Sea & Sea 1200hd?

Cheers

IMO-
If cost is the factor I would go for the DC800, I belive the 1200HD would be the better camera over all but they are both good cameras for thier range.

You should look at what you want if you added the tray-arm and strobes down the line as well.

You could look at the Canon G9 also. The prices have dropped with the G10 on the market and this would be a more advanced camera to grow with you.

Canon G9
2082B001 Canon Powershot G9 Digital Camera Kit (http://www.adorama.com/US%20%20%20%20326705.html?searchinfo=g9&item_no=17)

Iklelite Housing
Ikelite Underwater Housing for Canon G9 [ike.6147.09] - $485.00 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_32&products_id=2180)

Canon Housing
Canon WP-DC21 Housing for G9 [can.wp.dc21] - $199.00 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_32&products_id=2895)

Mitch200
01-22-2009, 12:12
Thanks for the info. I intend to purchase a bundled strobe (e.g., YS27 or SL961) the at the same time.

reeldive
01-25-2009, 19:16
Love my DC800. the pro kit was priced right for me and it has some manual control when in Ext Flash Manual. just enough to get some experiance. Great intermediate camera at an afordable price

cindybindy
01-27-2009, 11:01
Hi,
I will be heading to Cozumel in February to do some diving and am looking at a new digital camera. I have an older Sealife and am now looking at the DC800. Has anyone used this camera and how do you feel about it? I am not new to digital cameras but want something fairly easy to use and get pretty good pictures. Thanks.

Thanks to all the wonderful help from everyone. I purchased the DC800 from ScubaToys and have been having a great time learning all the ins and outs of the camera and getting ready for our dive trip in 13 days. I will attach some pictures when I get back. Looking forward to diving with a great camera!!!!

Suther2136
01-31-2009, 16:19
I have the sea life sl320 and single strobe. anybody use the wide angle lens for that? comments. so far I see pretty good picks from the sl.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3047/2885768953_c111cc6449.jpg

PhD4JC
04-01-2009, 13:57
I had a Canon Powershot (until it was taken off the beach chair in Curacao last summer).
The combined price of camera and housing was great.
Good pictures, with just 2 complaints.
I could not figure out how to reliably get it to force flash and the aperture was too slow (I believe that is the cycling time between pictures).

I have used other undwater cameras, the Sea&Sea is the only brand name I remember and did not like them.

I have taken pictures with tons of digital cameras on land, and only like the Sony Cybershot--which has been my main digital camera for going on 5 years.

I finally bit the bullet and purchased the Ikelite housing for my baby and took her underwater, however, the flash reflects off the housing, so only the left corner of my pictures are lit.

I looked into get a flash for my present set up, but the flash alone is about $450 and I would still need the arm and base to connect it to my housing. In addition, my warranty is up next year and I don't know that I want to spend all this money on a camera that I might flood and have no protection to fix.

I do not want to spend $1000 on a camera set up--since I have flooded at least 4 cameras.

I am looking at the Sealife DC800 Pro 8.0 Megapixel 4 X Optical Zoom 2.7- Inch LCD Screen Underwater/Land Camera in Removable Housing with Digital Pro Flash (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B000GG9338/ref=ord_cart_shr?%5Fencoding=UTF8&m=A3SPLR0MSOYZ8O&v=glance) for $700, but have some concerns.

How does the cycling speed compare to my Sony CYbershot?

Does Scubatoys offer an extended warranty if I flood my camera?

I read that this camera takes awful land pictures because it is set for UW, is this so?

What else do I need to know about this camera before I spend the $$$


please advise.





I've been looking at either the DC800 or the 1200HD as an upgrade from my old DC100. Can't seem to get past the price points and for the money the Sealife seems like a much better deal for the someone moving from beginner to intermediate point and shoot type photographer.

Based on some browsing, it appears that the DC800 is the Minox DC8011. Not too much out there on the Minox.

Any thoughts on the DC800 versus the Sea & Sea 1200hd?

Cheers

IMO-
If cost is the factor I would go for the DC800, I belive the 1200HD would be the better camera over all but they are both good cameras for thier range.

You should look at what you want if you added the tray-arm and strobes down the line as well.

You could look at the Canon G9 also. The prices have dropped with the G10 on the market and this would be a more advanced camera to grow with you.

Canon G9
2082B001 Canon Powershot G9 Digital Camera Kit (http://www.adorama.com/US%20%20%20%20326705.html?searchinfo=g9&item_no=17)

Iklelite Housing
Ikelite Underwater Housing for Canon G9 [ike.6147.09] - $485.00 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_32&products_id=2180)

Canon Housing
Canon WP-DC21 Housing for G9 [can.wp.dc21] - $199.00 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_32&products_id=2895)