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<font color='#000080'>Considering getting a Gates housing for a digital Sony Video Camera. Has anyone used them? Any problems? What's the weight like for travelling?

Also interested in any other housings people use....

Sue

x
 

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Nefarious Activist
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I use a Light & Motion Mako housing with a Sony PC120 Camcorder and am very happy with it. It is a handy compact size and the pistol grip controls are very easy to operate.

I bought the optional monitor back with mine which is very useful when first starting out with video like I was. I also splashed out on the lights, I am less pleased with these however as I find the wiring routing to be a bit of a pain at times and the battery terminals corrode very quickly meaning a lot of messing about prior to using them.

Ian
 

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<font color='#000080'>Hey Ian

I've seen mako on the web. I've been told by several people not to get an electronic set-up for my first housing, as the electronics are bound to get wet and go wrong etc etc. I'm also going to be travelling and won't be able to get it fixed if it does go wrong, hence going for the manual controls.

However, the Mako does look good. Have you ever had any problems with the electronics?
 

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<font color='#000080'>Thanks Tim

I have already seen their website (as advertised in Dive mag last month). There are just so many around, it's difficult to know what to pick.... Any others had any experience of housings? Pros and cons?
 

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more weaselly than a weaselly thing
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www.greenawaymarine.com are excellent.

Do a websearch on FEP as well, they will hire out sets so you could have a play and see how you like them. I think they only hire the light & motion stuff though.
 

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<font color='#000080'>Cool. Thanks. I'll try FEP.

Done loads and loads of research already on the web, including Greenaway Marine (they look great by the way), and I've got loads of links and pictures, and specs and prices.....

However, would really like to hear from people that actually use them.
What problems have you had? In hindsight would you have bought something different....
I'm trying to get the hands-on view from divers, so any info would be really helpful

Sue x
 

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Hi Sue,

I have just been to FEP (literally, got back 2 mins ago). The company is a one man band in the UK but the guy knows what he is talking about (bear in mind I sell digital cameras for a living). The housings are not cheep, but they are of an extremely high quality.

Do not get a manual control version, if they go wrong then they do so big time. Usually involves a flooded housing and a dead camera. If the electronics in the housing fail then it is not such a big issue. On top of which it is fairly unlikely as it is not the most complicated bit of circuitry I have ever seen. On top of which the Light and Motion stuff is sold al over the world, invariably you can find somewhere to get it fixed. I must admit this is one of my major considerations in deciding which housing I am going to go for.

I have done quite a wedge of research into this over the last month, if you PM me off line with you e-mail address I will send back some info on the three companies I have decided are really worth considering.

Andrew
 

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Grumbler-chief in Residence
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Hi Sue,

I have just been to FEP (literally, got back 2 mins ago). The company is a one man band in the UK but the guy knows what he is talking about (bear in mind I sell digital cameras for a living). The housings are not cheep, but they are of an extremely high quality.

Do not get a manual control version, if they go wrong then they do so big time. Usually involves a flooded housing and a dead camera. If the electronics in the housing fail then it is not such a big issue. On top of which it is fairly unlikely as it is not the most complicated bit of circuitry I have ever seen. On top of which the Light and Motion stuff is sold al over the world, invariably you can find somewhere to get it fixed. I must admit this is one of my major considerations in deciding which housing I am going to go for. The "pistol" grips are fantastic, it makes it so easy to use (I had a housing on trial this weekend), I strongly recommend them.

I have done quite a wedge of research into this over the last month, if you PM me off line with you e-mail address I will send back some info on the three companies I have decided are really worth considering.

Andrew
 

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<font color='#000080'>I've got a Sony PC110 and a Gates Housing which I bought about two years ago and have used extensively (about 150 dives) in Indonesia, Philippines, Mauritius and PNG .  It is in my opinion excellent and well worth the money.  I always travel with it in my Lowepro backpack with the video itself in the housing. You can contact me direct if you have any questions.
 

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Snap Happy
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Sue, you do know what the slang term for those that spend all their time and money on video instead of the far superior art of creating images with stills...

And this isn't my term I promise.


Its vidiots.  Shocking huh!



You may also get more info www.digitaldiver.net where they have a section for vidi-,  ooops, videographers.

Also try www.uwdv.com

Hope you find something you like.

This isn't for that scuba porn thing is it?
 

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<font color='#000080'>Well Tim, I agree, stills is a far superior and purer artform.... however, as I work in stills, it would be like a busman's holiday, so looking forward to doing something completely different.

And come on... how exciting is it actually watching footage of that beautiful turtle flipping by?
Underwater porn... now there's an idea!

Thanks again for all the info
 

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Nefarious Activist
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Sue, I have had no problem with the electronics yet, AIUI the batteries in the controllers should last around 5-6 months of near daily use. I occasionally work as a videographer and this info comes from colleagues as I don't work that often.

As regards stills being the purer artform, I understand that a lot of National Geographic underwater stills are taken from high definition video these days.
 

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So when are we going to see some of all this video work this is going on?  I have my broadband connection ready and waiting to download your big old files - but where are they say I?

C'mon guys show us snappers what we are missing.
 

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Hi

I've got an oceanhaus housing. It's superb. Tiny - ideal for travelling. Email or pm me if you want further info advice.

regards

Jeremy
 

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Sue drop me a PM if you want any info,  I use a Sony camera in a Gates housing.

Have used it extensively over the last couple of years and too be fair it has had a bit of a hard life,  it has taken a bit of a battering and survived with just a few scratches to the paint finish.

I would buy another one tomorrow like a shot,  they are just slightly negatively bouyant in water and are pretty effortless to control.

Drop me a PM if you want any more info, or if you want to see some examples of video footage.

I have the wide angle fish eye lense on mine and it makes a huge difference.  The flip up red filter is also very easy to use and a must if you do not plan to use lights.

Daz
 

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[b said:
Quote[/b] (Timing @ Mar. 16 2004,00:12)]So when are we going to see some of all this video work this is going on?  I have my broadband connection ready and waiting to download your big old files - but where are they say I?

C'mon guys show us snappers what we are missing.
See Bren T. He has a copy of the vid I knock up for him when he and Fi dropped in a year or so ago. Not my best but good tourist stuff.
 

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Sue,

Sorry, I didn't PM last night, I finally discovered what was wrong with my PC (the one I spent all weekend rebuiding) the hard drive curled up it's toes.

I will refind the links and send them later today.

Andrew
 

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<font color='#728FCE'>Hi Sue, I have a Mako housing with a SOny PC330 and I can honestly say that it is fantastic. It is slightly negative in the water and even without the monitor back (gettting soon) there is a good sized port for viewing. The chap at FEP was extremely helpful in giving me advice (Steve Mawl is his name). It is however, not even close to cheap, so you need to weigh up if the amount of use versus the cost. If you go for one of their travel packs it does not exceed the new hand luggage weight allowance either.
I used to have an Oceanhaus and got extremely frustrated with it, it is more prone to salt damage, required lots of maintenance and, although light, I found difficult to use. I would definetly that the likelihood of water ingress is greater with manual than electronic controls as well.
 
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