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paperdesk
04-20-2009, 19:08
What strobe(s) would work well for the Olympus SP350? I don't know much yet about brands and models of underwater strobes. What will I get in the more expensive models that I wouldn't get in the cheaper ones? I belive there is a TTL flash port on the housing. Which strobes would take advantage of that?

I don't have to have anything fancy (ie don't have much money), so I'm hoping to find some inexpensive options.

Thank you!

Ted

DevilDiver
04-20-2009, 20:46
The housing for your SP-350 might be hard to find. Maybe Ebay or Amazon... around $200-250.

PT-030 Underwater Housing for the SP-350
Item: #202021-410

It does appear that you could have TTL if you purchase the FL-36 Flash and Flash Housing PFL-E01 but the Olympus site does not have them..

You could connect almost any strobe to the housing via fiber optic cable but no TTL.

What is your budget and what are you wanting out of your set-up?

paperdesk
04-21-2009, 00:07
I should have mentioned that I do have the housing already, but no strobe or sync cables. Apparently the sync cable supplied by Olympus is insanely expensive, so I guess that would mean I'm going slave unless I find one used.


If money were no object I would get a housing for my DSLR. Unfortunately it turns out that money is an object. Hence this question: Is it possible to spend 100-200 on a strobe and get something that would be worth the upgrade from my on camera flash? How much more would I have to spend on arms, trays etc.

I'm no pro photographer, but I do a lot of photography as a hobby and for a magazine I work for. On my Canon SLR I wouldn't consider less than the best Canon flash available. Underwater, however, I'm looking to just get good enough photos to enjoy looking at and sharing later, and for identification purposes. However, I'm not interested in buying junk. I'd rather have no strobe, than one that is no good.

Hopefully some of you who have been through this can help bring me up to speed or more likely bring me down to reality.

Thanks!

Ted


The housing for your SP-350 might be hard to find. Maybe Ebay or Amazon... around $200-250.

PT-030 Underwater Housing for the SP-350
Item: #202021-410

It does appear that you could have TTL if you purchase the FL-36 Flash and Flash Housing PFL-E01 but the Olympus site does not have them..

You could connect almost any strobe to the housing via fiber optic cable but no TTL.

What is your budget and what are you wanting out of your set-up?

DevilDiver
04-21-2009, 07:00
Ted,

Take a look at the S&S YE-17a.... The have it on sale at Reef Photo for $249.
Sea & Sea YS-17Auto [ss.03109] - $249.95 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_84&products_id=2497)

Light weight, 2 sec. recycle time, 400 flash per chrg...I am not sure how the TTL works but it appears to mimic the preflash and meter itself to adjust output.

As far as the tray and arm, you could look at the (Fisheye Compact Digicam Tray and Flex Arm (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_17&products_id=2218)


$119.00) or you can find the S&S Light (Sea & Sea Sea Arm Light Single Set (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_97_37&products_id=3155) $154.95) at a good price as it is being discontinued. ST stocks the Light Arm kit so they might be able to match the price.

Take a look and let me know....

paperdesk
04-21-2009, 08:19
Thanks DD,

I have a couple more questions.

1. When using a strobe, if the on camera flash is still firing, does it cause backscatter? Is so, is there a way to minimize this?

2. Is it worth getting a single strobe, rather than a pair?

3. Would the S&S arm be better than the flex arm? It's $50 more, but I'm wondering if the flex arm wouldn't be easier to adjust on the fly?

I am interested in shooting mostly close ups and fish up to a few feet away, FWIW.

Thanks,

Ted

DevilDiver
04-21-2009, 10:19
Thanks DD,

I have a couple more questions.

1. When using a strobe, if the on camera flash is still firing, does it cause backscatter? Is so, is there a way to minimize this?
Yes, you would attach the fiber optic connector to the housing that should cover the camera's flash to eliminate this issue and channel the light through the cable to the strobe.



2. Is it worth getting a single strobe, rather than a pair?
You will most likely do fine with a single but a pair would give you more coverage and eliminate shadows. This depends on preference and the type of photo, for macro and portrait the single should work but wide angle benefits more with duel strobes.



3. Would the S&S arm be better than the flex arm? It's $50 more, but I'm wondering if the flex arm wouldn't be easier to adjust on the fly?
You would have more range with the S&S but both will work. If you add a second strobe make sure the Fisheye is set up for it. I use the S&S system and have been happy with it.



I am interested in shooting mostly close ups and fish up to a few feet away, FWIW.
A single strobe should work fine for this. The position of the strobe will determine backscatter, two would even out the lighting and reduce the chances of backscatter with having to use less direct lighting angels. With macro you want to get the strobe close the the housing, usually over the top and angled straight or slightly up depending on distance and access to the subject.

paperdesk
04-21-2009, 15:36
This information is great! This really gives me a good idea of where to start, and what to expect cost wise.

Thank you!

DevilDiver
04-21-2009, 22:49
From your post earlier I am going to guess you have the basics of photography covered. It would be a good idea to pick up a book or two on U/W photography and get some of the basics on the differences just to get the most out of your equipment investment.

There are a couple of threads with book suggestions if you search. Can't wait to see some pics.. Good luck!

paperdesk
04-23-2009, 19:26
From your post earlier I am going to guess you have the basics of photography covered. It would be a good idea to pick up a book or two on U/W photography and get some of the basics on the differences just to get the most out of your equipment investment.

There are a couple of threads with book suggestions if you search. Can't wait to see some pics.. Good luck!

There is so much I am looking forward to learning about underwater photography especially regarding flash photography. REading a few books is a great idea. Any suggestions on specific ones that are particurlarly helpful?

DevilDiver
04-23-2009, 20:57
Check out this thread....
http://forum.scubatoys.com/uw-photo-101/9398-good-guide.html

The best book that I have found on the subject is Martin Edge's. I have picked up good things from all of them but with your knowlege base I would guess that you would get the most from that one.....

paperdesk
04-26-2009, 08:55
Check out this thread....
http://forum.scubatoys.com/uw-photo-101/9398-good-guide.html

The best book that I have found on the subject is Martin Edge's. I have picked up good things from all of them but with your knowlege base I would guess that you would get the most from that one.....

Very good reviews! Off to Amazon . . .

Ted

paperdesk
04-26-2009, 09:18
Ted,

Take a look at the S&S YE-17a.... The have it on sale at Reef Photo for $249.
Sea & Sea YS-17Auto [ss.03109] - $249.95 : Reef Photo & Video!, The Underwater Photo Pros (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_84&products_id=2497)

Light weight, 2 sec. recycle time, 400 flash per chrg...I am not sure how the TTL works but it appears to mimic the preflash and meter itself to adjust output.

As far as the tray and arm, you could look at the (Fisheye Compact Digicam Tray and Flex Arm (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_17&products_id=2218)


$119.00) or you can find the S&S Light (Sea & Sea Sea Arm Light Single Set (http://reefphoto.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=135_97_37&products_id=3155) $154.95) at a good price as it is being discontinued. ST stocks the Light Arm kit so they might be able to match the price.

Take a look and let me know....

I don't see that the YS-17 compensates for pre-flash, but I belive my camera has a pre-flash. Would that cause problems?

paperdesk
04-26-2009, 10:14
Oh, apparently it does, though I didn't see any mention of that on the manufacturer's website. I'm hoping to find this used, to make it fit in my price range. I'll be trolling the used forums I guess.