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FAQs, Input about Aquatic Videography

Related Articles: Aquarium Photography: A Wonderful Offshoot By:  Adam Blundell and Shane Silcox,

Related FAQs: Above Water Photography, Underwater Photography,


underwater web cam for an educational reef tank  11/4/11
Hi, I've had an outside reef cam on an educational tank I take care of at an elementary school for several years and would like to place a cam in the tank and stream live video to the website I've built
(http://www.phycotech.com/BrownReefCam1.html  ). 
<Mmm, can be done>
I've looked all over and have some instructions for waterproofing a conventional cam, but was wondering if you knew of any affordable cams that would fit my application out of the box?
<Yes... I have a few here in my office... Would look into a used housing, more modern camera...>
I don't think waterproof cameras can stream live video under continuous duty circumstances. Any advice you might have would be great. Thanks much, Ann.
<Do contact Tom or Lee at Marine Camera Distributors (MCD.com), or the fine folks at Backscatter.com re what you have in mind... there are in and out of tank possibilities, some with rotating/reciprocating motors. Bob Fenner>Diving Malaysia... and Editing Sony video on a Mac
 5-1-08Dear Diana, How did you manage to read from camera into iMovie? I would very much appreciate help!! Did you connect using USB cable direct to Mac or to Windows partition then copy to Mac? Do you need to buy MPEG 2 plug in or some other program? <I used the USB, but had the program "hiccup" intermittently and had to re-start, add it bit by bit... time consuming> Dear Bob and Diana, Great places to dive in Malaysia are as follows: Peninsular Malaysia: Tenggol (5 hours drive from KL) Perhentian (fly to Kota Bharu then 1hr taxi then 1hr speedboat) Redang (can fly direct to island from KL) Tioman (can fly direct to island from KL) East Malaysia Sipadan (of course) Some islands off KK... one has a resident dugong but I don't know if still will be there in 2009 Langkayan Layang-Layang Mataking Sipadan is of course the best. The rest are about the same diving-wise, with perhaps the East Malaysia destinations being a bit nicer. Check out the following website for more info: www.msac.org.my http://www.kapalselam.org/ www.airasia.com http://www.berjaya-air.com/ Thanks for the Egypt advice! Will check out those places you mentioned! Trudy <Thank you Trudy. Cheers, BobF>  

Video on WWM, photography/videography, diving, life  4/13/08 In regard to last week?s video possibilities on WWM, what do you think of simply posting vids on YouTube? WWM can have it?s own dedicated channel, controlled by yourself for official WWM posts. It seems to me an easy solution. Those that want to view can, those that don?t won?t have to. It costs WWM nothing and links can be incorporated into articles or even FAQ?s. Just something I have been thinking and wanted to discuss in person this last weekend (shame it did not work out). What is your take? Scott V. <Thanks for this Scott... Have thought re going this route... And have been trying to download the last trips video on the new Mac Pro... not going all the way on the import... Argghhh, but am determined to try... maybe both... loading on our site with FrontPage and also YouTube. BobF> Re: Video on WWM 4/13/08 I was able to directly upload to Imovie. It did not work at all with a USB...curious. But worked and continues to work flawlessly with a firewire cable. <Have spent the last twenty so minutes looking for a ding dang cable that will go into the four pin Firewire on the Mac... AND fit the Sony (1080 line, 60 gig HD... that has all sorts of ports... but not a firewire!!!! Nor a cord that has their flattened "V" connector to fire! Am going to upload on my other desktop, copy and try linking to the Mac... or off to the electronic store for a cable? B> Re: Video on WWM 4/13/08 BTW, has more to do with the Sony export than the Mac import, I think. <If memory serves, they/Sony offers a Mac vers. of their upload software... would rather not use though. BobF> Re: Video on WWM 4/13/08 No, the Sony software generally stinks, especially compared to what is included with the Mac. The same goes for Nikon!! <We are in total agreement... what a fiasco the NEF format is/was... and charging folks for the crap software post purchase of their camera bodies!?> My Sony is not HD and has standard Firewire ports. Do let me know what you figure out, I have been contemplating a HD camera for a while now. Scott V. <The camera is fab... have a cheapy Ikelite housing and some old-retrofitted NiteRider lighting system... Do you dive, make pix U/W? BobF>

Re: Video on WWM 4/14/08 Bob, <Scott> I do not dive, have wished to for years. First it was an issue of lack of funds, now it is lack of time. <Ahh, too often mutually exclusive properties, limiting the exercise of our growth in these... "modern times"> I am always saying I have no time to travel. Fact of the matter is I do. <Yes my younger friend... We all have exactly the same amount of time. An important lesson... to learn/realize> I choose to use it traveling to Central/South America with a medical team. <Ahh!> I go and make prosthetics for people that usually don't even have shoes. I generally do two stints of two weeks a piece per year. <Very worthwhile> Not being happy with the way my pictures translated what I experienced prodded me into the DSLR. The difference is amazing! The next trip is to Tejutla, Guatemala in May, although it looks like I may miss this one. The underwater world continues to captivate my interest. My friends that do dive tell me I will ditch the tank after seeing a reef in person... <Mmm, or delve further... these are not mutually exclusive activities> I doubt that! My business partner dives and is constantly harassing me into going with him. <You should listen> If and when I do go diving I will invest in the underwater equip., <Easy enough to rent/borrow...> I would not want to miss capturing that experience either. What is your primary lens you use? <60 and 105 mm macro, fixed focal length, auto-focus (Nikon)... with a few others used in small percentage time> I have looked at the Ikelite housings, seems to be the way to go. <Are fine for general use> A grand is reasonable enough for what you get, it is the price of the strobe that is killer! <Also... about a grand currently... each... then there are arms, batteries... the computer to...> Needless to say, if I do someday dive, you are the first one I will contact. Perhaps meeting up on the big island with you! <I do see this happening... and soon! Let's chat over when you have time> Cheers, Scott V. PS, I have been creating a website for an LFS owner/friend of mine. This is oddly enough the first time I have taken interest in taking pictures in a tank. This has captivated me more than the livestock and reefkeeping itself. Of course, as soon as I figured out what I was doing the camera crapped out, a bad image sensor according to Nikon. Supposed to be back to me this next week. I miss my camera and bounce between buying a cheap point and shoot and just swallowing my wallet and getting a D200. Patience is not my greatest virtue. <Another important lesson... Cheers, BobF>

Fellow videographer 9/9/06 Bob- <Justin> My name is Justin Miedwig and I live in the Chicago area.  The reason I am writing...well.. there are a few reasons, I guess.  First, I talked to Jenny (PufferPunk) and she told me I should contact you about answering questions on WWM.  Second, I just recently met Walt Smith and his wife out in Fiji to shoot some underwater video for his web site and archives.  I saw that you have also pursued videography and I would love to talk to you about it. <Ahh, anytime>   I have been in movies and television for the last 5 years working in both LA and Chicago on feature films, television, commercials, music videos...you name it.  I originally was going to go to school for marine biology, but due to the funds, or lack of - I majored in my second love...Communications. <Mmm, can likely continue to be "tied in" as you're doing>   Having been in the reef hobby for 13 years now, I am now starting to combine the two and I am loving every second of it. <Ahh, good. I as well> At any rate, I would love to hear any stories or advice that you would be willing to share in this field. <Mmmm, likely a good idea to make this an ongoing process... try to have our paths cross... Perhaps we can all get out on a dive trip. We go often> I am always looking for opportunities to use my equipment to explore and document the wonders of the oceans. <Excellent> I appreciate your time and I hope we can talk soon. <Me too> Cheers! Justin Miedwig _<If you have time (obviously you have the skills (English), knowledge/experience, and drive to share... We would greatly enjoy your joining us in responding to folks on WWM... and perhaps some other media projects going forward. Bob Fenner, out in Jamaica presently>

Fellow UW videographer  9/18/06 Bob- Sorry to hear about the reefs there.  It is a sad thing to hear that  bad news more often now.  Although I am an extreme believer in reefs  evolving and adapting to their situations, I am questioning the speed at which  this can be done.  At any rate... <...> I dot have a website up and running at the moment, but I can definitely give you my opinion...I own and use a Panasonic DVX100B 24p Camera  ($4,000).  I chose this camera for it's 24 frame Progressive feature that  let's you shoot footage like you would see on Discovery channel or  something.  It also has a great 3ccd chip configuration with great lines of  resolution.  The only regret I have is that now a lot of stuff is moving  purely to HD.  The cameras have dropped drastically in price and are being  picked up by consumers as well. <Thank you for this> The housing I chose for it was an Equinox Pro Pak 8 custom built (I received the first one ever built for this camera).  Likes: Manual  controls, large viewing area in back for LCD, price.  Dislikes: Heavy out  of water (35lb), no room for flip out viewfinder... <35... pounds!> They all have their trade off.  Ikelite has great housings that are inexpensive. <And I do like the mech. controls as well... but the ding dang things are huge for the larger cameras... Am a Sony fan by and large...>   Although am sure I am preaching to the choir, just make sure  it has functionality.  Not necessarily more, but the important things that  you want. Here is a consumer HD set up that is very promising: _ http://www.camcorderinfo.com/content/Sony-HDR-HC3-Camcorder-Review.htm_ ( http://www.camcorderinfo.com/content/Sony-HDR-HC3-Camcorder-Review.htm) _ http://www.gateshousings.com/HC3.html_ ( http://www.gateshousings.com/HC3.html) If you want to shoot me an address, I would be more than happy to send you a copy of a DVD I just produced with Walt's footage on there to give you an idea. Hope this helped a little.  As always, a pleasure. Justin <Will likely see this through Walt at a get-tog. soon... But thank you. BobF>

Housing a Sony TR series video camera Bob, My Name Rob, I stumbled across your web site while searching for water housing for a Sony CCD-TR700. Any ideas where to get one? I've been looking high and low, new and used....To no avail. Help? Rob <Just to keep looking. Maybe put out a "Wanted" post to such outfits as Marine Camera Distributors, KEH, Aquatica, Ikelite, Helix, Adorama.com... and any of the underwater photography/videography hobby groups that have a website. Keep your eyes peeled for "extras" like lights, filters, extra batteries... Bob Fenner>

Video stuff... Date: Wed, 4 Jun 2003 12:03:55 -0700 Would you have the time to throw together a story line about something we've done recently... a story that would cover about a 30 minute video that could be then put together from existing footage. I was thinking Cozumel - probably have enough material to cover Caribbean reefs or some such item... could do a similar one on the Red Sea. I suppose I need to sit down and view more of Pete's videos. Thanks, J --

FW Highland Eels footage in FJ Dear Bob, I hope this message finds you well. <Yes my friend, thank you.> Recently, we finished shooting this years Eco-Challenge in Fiji. Unfortunately we never did shoot any footage of the fresh water eels up in the mountains, but now we are seeking that footage.  Do you or anyone you know have any footage of these eels that we could possibly purchase? <I will send your note to friends there and ask if they do. We do not. Have you tried Ed Lovell in FJ? He may know someone. I'll ask Tim McLeod of WSI to chime in as well.> Please let me know if you have any ideas as to where I can find this footage. Thank you in advance for all your help. Kind Regards, Maren <Bob Fenner>

Re: video capturing Hi Bob, <Hey Bryan> This is Bryan from MASLAC - the lucky winner of your book ;) You were wanting to get video onto the web, right? <Yes, thank you for the follow-up> Do you have your video on VHS or are you using digital video (digital camcorder)? <Both, but mainly digital> I assume you want to convert to mp3 or similar format. There's some video capture cards you can buy that let you do that. http://www.aver.com/products/dvm.shtml http://www.adstech.com/products/PYRO1394DV/specifications/API1394specs.asp?p id=API-1394PCI http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B00004Y2P4/qid=1039650178/sr=8 -1/ref=sr_8_1/104-7359005-1193545?v=glance&s=electronics&n=507846 Looks like you can get video capture cards for under $100 that come with software. Just make sure your camera and the card are compatible (i.e. both have firewire or whatever), and that your PC has the minimal requirements. Lemme know if you want me to check something out for you, or if you wanna run something by me before you buy. <Will do. Can't wait to put video on WetWebMedia.com! Bob Fenner> Bryan

Re: Scratched Red Plastic Color Compensating Filter (underwater videography) Hi Guys Thanks for the help. Ikelite won't be able to do it in time. I am kind of prepared to shoot my DV CAM without the filter. <Perry, you might consider doing what Jack.M did last trip with his new/scratched red filter (from Ikelite). We went to an optometrist shop, they cut a circle out of the material (that wasn't too badly damaged) and he fit it inside the housing with the retainer that acts as a light block for the space in the housing twixt the forward lens area and the housing itself... dedicated added color... it worked! Bob Fenner> Will update u guys on Bali when I am back. Perry

Re: Video clips request Bob, Just trying to keep up with who is who. Who are Joe & Jack? Barb-- <Sorry for the confusion. (A friend in the HHH, let's dispense with acronyms <too vulgar> for now), a friend and videographer, all round good guy who has tried to help Pete and I to... learn to use the gear, tools we already have for video (sigh)... and Jack (Melroy, Slow Poke in the Hash) is our dive/travel partner and a videographer, and character par excellence... You will meet these folks. Bob F>

Video Clips I have the software/hardware to do the editing, but no cameras/decks to supply the video. I can even digitize Hi8 now, if I had the camera or deck. What I don't have, is a whole lot of time. <Hey! I did read that your current mega-work project was due on 6/1... what are you doing with your spare time... eating? sleeping? Cut it out!> I do also have a simple page with 3 or 4 short video clips that Pete and I chopped up, during the last trip out to SanD, that I can upload to the server for testing, feedback. <Please do so... Don't know re the logistics, reasonability of shipping you a hi-8 or DVS rig for uploading, editing... Might be better to do the preliminary sorting, splicing, saving of pertinent bits/sections here.... send them along for you? Bob F> -Zo

Re: Video Clips You can check out: http://video.wetwebfotos.com or http://wetwebfotos.com/video For three short clips. <WOW! Neat-oh, cool, far-out... Can't wait for mo! Bob F> -Zo

Re: Video clips request With out getting to Technical, give me the video that you want to put up on your website and we can go from there.. Lets start short and sweet. a 30 second clip and we can see how many hit we get.. I have most of the latest software required to edit compress etc, but need the video you want..  <Pete's got it... will cc him here> In the below message is a summary of an article about video and streaming.. If you want more info check out the link it's a good place to get more informed about streaming <Thanks much Joe... we will be diving together... and soon! Bob F> Joe Below is an excerpt from an article posted on Network Computing.com. > They did EXTENSIVE testing on Apple's, Microsoft's, and Real Networks' streaming video solutions and came up with the following. Click on the  link at the bottom for the full report. > "On the streaming server side, we found the compatibility dreams that are made of. Unlike hardware encoders, the main issue with these servers is, indeed, compatibility. Our three participants -- Apple Computer, Microsoft and RealNetworks -- proved that their players could work on multiple operating systems and deliver some level of quality video to each. We graded each on quality, compatibility, ease of use and price. > After we spent weeks in arduous testing and watching our favorite movie over and over, our numbers showed that Apple's Darwin Streaming Server 4 and QuickTime Player 5 package deserves top honors. Apple proved it could deliver a robust server and client that performed well. Its images beat the competition over a range of bandwidths. Best of all, the software is free, regardless of which operating system you're running. RealNetworks' RealSystem solution took a close second and fell well behind Apple in the price category, since the costs of RealNetworks server software escalate into the thousands of dollars, based on the number of viewers you wish to serve. Finally, Microsoft's Windows Media Services fared poorly in all but the highest-bandwidth quality tests. If you're running Windows 2000 Server and all your clients are Windows-based, this software is a no-brainer, but it's truly the least common denominator in streaming video." > http://www.networkcomputing.com/1306/1306f1.html

Re UW site Maybe another source for submissions. www.goldendolphin.com <I'll be darned. Walter Starck is the owner/mgr... payment of "30% of their net returns"... at the close of a quarter, within 30 days... how would one tell if/what this might be? I do wish I could preview more of the sites contents... Many good ideas for content and format here. Will send around for alls edification, stimulation. Bob F>

Re: uW company Check out this site, only when you have time!!! diveflag.com 219 companies/individuals with uW pics/video, have not found one with images to sell in real time, potential customers for Lorenzo in the future maybe??? Some interesting sites, click on uwphotography.net once in the site. Pete. <Someone's soon to be making real money. Bob F>

Thanks 4 dinner (video tape source) Bob, Pete and Di, Thanks for dinner and the hospitality.. Wanted to also remind you to tell that Lorenzo gut that is forwarding the emails to remove me off the list. I can't open them and it makes my computer crash. <Will cc him here. See addy above... but/and do send him a note if still a prob.> Here is the place that I am buying my video tapes.. The Sony dvm-60pr They're fine you need anything better. The last order I made I paid 4.69 each.. Their # is 1-800-238-8480.. Maybe you Pete and jack can split 50.. They also have good deals on batteries. <Thanks for this Joe. Will post on our sites for others perusal. Bob Fenner> Talk with you later Joe

Video footage for school presentation Dear Bob, Anthony, & Steve... For my senior year final for high school English, I've chosen to do a documentation on the status of coral reefs of the world to educate my classmates. I have a lot of literature to use for facts during the narration of my 10 minute presentation but I would really like to add some footage of reef life to spice it up a bit. I found Coral Realm to have a lot of great footage but membership is necessary and I don't have the money nor do I think I'll have it in time to do my presentation. My question to you guys is do you happen to know of any other organizations or communities that feature downloadable reef videos? I'm running out of time for my presentation...any help you can offer is greatly appreciated as I'm also a young aquarist who you have helped before - you guys are awesome Mike Morocco, Age 17 Worcester, MA <The easiest, fastest and very likely least expensive route for you to go is to visit a large local public library (or college/university one) and "check-out", as in borrow, a "travelogue" or underwater natural history tape (VHS) or DVD and "lift" as in borrow again, a few minutes of what is on it (this sort of viewing/use is typically allowed for educational experiences). Bob Fenner>

Fwd: Multimedia production I found a good article on putting together a computer for professional quality video editing. Go here---> http://www.pcmech.com/show/build/328/ Mike<Zo, Jas... input pls. Should WWM buy this set-up for our video editing use? What sort of box, contents are appropriate? Where might we procure all? Put together? Bob F>

Re: Multimedia production Seems to me the article is outdated, as well as written for total greenies? Especially all the spiel about a big-money video capture card (read: analog dinosaur). Pete and I discussed the very time-consuming process of 'previewing' edits, and the VERY time-consuming final output... but for small, short clips, the Vaios are probably okay for now. Money is definitely better spent on A. Capture equipment (cameras/lights/housings) and B. Getting to the place worth capturing. <I hear, and understand "that"!> If we/Pete do get serious about producing a -bunch- of video, a faster computer (specifically CPU and hard drive throughput) could be a real timesaver. And a dedicated MiniDV playback deck will outlast several cameras and/or save them from imploding later, under 60ft of water, 20 minutes into the dive. Consider it a must-have. Here's a link to a semi-pro deck at B&H: http://www01.bhphotovideo.com/default.sph/FrameWork.c47___ Zo. <Hotay! Chat with you soon. Bob F>

Re: Fwd: Multimedia production We can get just about everything we need from Fry's and a few of the mail order places on the Web. I was thinking of a dual processor set up using some Pentium 3 processors (which can be had cheap), at least 512 MB's of RAM, a couple of 60 GB, 7200 RPM hard drives (maybe wait a few months for the new serial ATA setup)24 speed CD Burner, DVD drive, video card with 128 MB's of RAM and 2 monitor outputs, video capture card etc... We have a good copy of Windows 2000 Professional to use as the operating system which will work with the dual processors. I think we can put it together for under $2000. <Mmm, what do you think re waiting up till/about the May trips... and see how much moolah and need we have then. Bob F> Mike

Fwd: Multimedia production Bob, We are in no rush to put this together, yet. I'm sure everyone will respond with their ideas about which components to use for the new setup. The Sony Vaio computers you guys have should be fine for now. The big issue is who is going to take the time to crack the books on and learn the video editing software we have? No use going forward until someone steps up to master the software. <Agreed... and would add, "and will make the commitment" to actually edit and post the content... Someone who "sees the future" and wants to be part of it. Bob F> Mike

Re: Fwd: Multimedia production "No use going forward until someone steps up to master the software." Pete and I edited a short video together on Sunday night. I'm comfortable, even confident, with Premiere at this point, and Pete will be too with a little practice. Rather than crack the books, we got my brother on the phone for 25 minutes, which definitely saved hours of frustration, with or without books. I'd even go so far as to suggest an extended weekend or so of video editing boot camp with Edward, sometime in the future. He can wrangle Adobe AfterEffects, in addition to Premiere. -Zo <Zo... he's here on the west coast? Maybe when you come back for your ophthalmologic work... Bob F>

Re: Fwd: Multimedia production Edward's in Salt Lake City, and a full-time UofUtah student to boot. But I'm sure we can get a handle on him sometime, and it'd be entirely worthwhile. <Okay> He may be hooking up with us for the Germany leg if he can scare up the funds/time - we could maybe do some evenings of editing in the hotel room (for those who aren't out swimming in their Bier?). <Achtung! Das ist verboten mein freund. See you soon. Bob F> -Zo

Underwater video Thought you might find this useful.. But you probably know a lot of this already. http://www.kenstone.net/fcp_homepage/underwater_video_1.html Joe <Thanks much for this Joe. Hadn't seen this, and it's well-done. Will share, link in turn. Be seeing you. Bob F>

Perry's Search for video hsg, visit to SD Bob Will you be moving to Hawaii soon? <No time soon... unfortunately. Pete and Di aren't "ready"> Need your help with the Video housing. I have made up my mind on purchasing the Seacam housing. Is there a Seacam dealer/agent in San Diego? <Not as far as I know... We do have Elwyn Gates and Chet Tussey (who actually make them), and Marine Camera Distributors: http://www.marinecamera.com/> How far is Huntington Beach from where you guys are? <Just to the north... not far> Might be making a trip to the States in the near future. <Great! Count on staying with us, and my picking you up, dropping you off at the airport... Make a list of what you'd like to do... maybe a dive/adventure trip to Baja... or videoing the coastal Public Aquariums for/for sale footage... Bob F> Perry

Perry, visiting, video projects, fun Hi Bob I hope to make it to the states as soon as possible. Not only to buy the housing but to explain to you and Pete the kind of investment model the partners at Spin network have in mind. It is rather difficult for me to explain over the net. But if a project is undertaken in Hawaii using this investment model I am pretty sure you guys will be happy with it. Meanwhile , Chris the Italian cameraman has decided not to take part in the project. <Ah, am not too surprised... he seemed the "flighty artist" type> I will have to attend training sessions with Chit Yee to get use to the Sony PD 100. Will be meeting up with the people from Spin Network tomorrow to view some DVDs of underwater documentaries. <Thank goodness. Let's get these projects going! Bob Fenner> Perry

Possible dive, u/w CD production/project Bob Just had a meeting at Spin Network. They have spoken to the people at Asian Diver and the response has been quite positive. Will try to get a soft copy of the scoping they have done for Manado. We will have to film only six out of the twenty or so dive sites in Manado. I think it will be impossible to cover it all on a disc. <Agreed... but could do a few topics... Above water "to dos", Fish, Coral, Creatures...> I told them that you will have no problems with describing the characteristics of a particular marine creature that is found in a particular site. <No, no problem. Send them to our sites: http://wetwebmedia.com/> Basically you will have to fill up the bones with flesh. They want to know how you want them to compensate you for your time besides air tickets, accommodation and free diving. Maybe you can suggest taking a cut of the profits if it is a success.  <That would be fine... more important at this juncture to move forward, try to assure the project is an overall success. If they can/will meet hard costs this is fine for now> They want you to be committed to the project and if you are getting paid for your expertise you will not be able to back out from it anytime you like.  <I understand, and only will commit as the program appears complete. Knowing you and your involvement is enough for now> There is a possibility that this project will be well received and that means we have to crack our heads fast to come out with another series before a competitor emerges. This might mean a month or two from home. They are afraid you won't stay on long enough. So think about it and let me know <Do go out in the field for a month at a time every year... as you know. Two months every couple of years currently. No problem. Bob Fenner> Perry

Housing # 6037.90 (Ikelite U/W Video) Hi Are you people using the same kind of housing? Are the prices compatible to what you can get in the States? <No... Perry, you will be very disappointed with these Ikelite products... I do use this fine companies gear (lights, sync cords...) for still work. But the mechanical controls with the video are terrible... requiring you to take your hands off the handles... Look at Amphibious... really. Bob Fenner> Perry

Re: Housing # 6037.90 Perry, prices quoted to you are very reasonable, but have to agree with Bob---re the ergonomics, not easy to use ,but I'm sure in time one would get used to its operation. Compared to Light & Motion/Amphibico LIGHT YEARS away, but the housing/light package of the Ikelite is a good value. Of Kenya/Tanzania----spent many months of my life working in the area, not into diving then, but have read Pemba is the best place to visit. Check out Google enter "Dive Kenya". The 68ft live aboard 8days--7nights out of Mombasa for US$1,000 sounds like a good deal. Regards, Peter. <Will add to the take up diving section of WWM pending Pete's entries on the Adventure Travel subweb. Bob Fenner>

Video shoot Hi Guys Just met up with the partners of Spin Network yesterday night. They will go ahead with the shooting of dive travel videos. The plan is to sell them in the form of DVDs. <Good idea... the best format> There are not keen to sell the programs to the local stations as the current market rate for each episode believe it or not is around Sing $300! <Ridiculously low> They hope to finalize everything soon and start shooting in September. The main worry right now is who should make up the team and how to pay them accordingly. I told them that I am willing to work for free and if the project makes money, take a cut from the profits. All they need to do is to pay for my tickets and accommodation. <A worthy offer/challenge> Bob, I told them I need you to do the scoping and basic scripting. With your background in marine life you see stuff that I might miss. For example the clown fishes and all the different kinds of anemones in Redang. I would not have known how unusual it was if you had not told me. <Hmm, glad to help in what ways I can> Peter, you might have to hang in there for a while until they come up with something for you. All the footages you have are in NTSC format. It will cost money to convert them into PAL. It will be cheaper for them to buy a housing and shoot footages all over again. Like I mentioned in the last mail, give a thought about buying better equipment or one that is in PAL format. <Yikes... surprising that conversion costs more...> Will update you guys Perry <Chat with you soon. Bob Fenner>

Re: video shoot Bob Will you happen to drop by in Singapore within the next month and a half. The partners want to speak to you. I told them I won't be surprise if you offered your services for free for the first few project. But they are afraid that if you give a free service you might not be that committed to the project. So Bob, what do you have in mind? <No scheduled trips, stops out that way in the next several months... what are you/these folks interested in? Short scripts? Footage? Will gladly haul out for costs (travel, accommodation, diving) as long as I can shoot stills in addition... Assisting with scripts, layouts, what have you... Have time, flexibility... send me your tentative schedule, or about where you'd like to go... Am off to Hawai'i for a while coming up... will this fit into your plans? A very popular dive destination for your target audience/consumers IMO> Sure Pete would like to come along, and he is a fast learner... a shame to have not edited more of the ten hours of video he shot and then sent this along...> By the way I just survived another back breaking trip from Trengganu. We stayed on another island called Lang Tengah. It is in between Redang island and Perhentian island. You get to see at least 2 resident turtles and 3 black tips just snorkeling at the house reef. <Reminds me of the one off Rainbow! That place was/is an absolute goldmine. Told Pete yesterday that if I were to do a video story on Pulau Redang, it would be about their principal activity (which is snorkeling) and most all the footage would be shot at that nearby beach. Bob Fenner>

Re: video shoot Bob I replied this mail yesterday just before my laptop hung on me. So I am sending this reply again just in case. They don't see Hawaii on the radar screens at the moment. Will start with Asian dive sites first. Preferably sites that we have been diving together before to cut down on time and cost. That leaves us with Redang and Manado. <Great places.> Yes, Peter should come along just in case. You see, they are not sure if Chris could shoot as well underwater. He is just an open water diver. One of the Spin network staff will tag along initially just to help us get things going. Once we are familiar with how things should be done we are more or less on our own. <Uh, agreed... the more talented folks shooting the better> Will be at Spin Network Thursday night to attend a training on their equipment and meet up with the rest of the staff. <Keep us informed of time frames, travel schedules. Bob Fenner> Regards Perry

Underwater video dear Bob: off the usual aquarium related questions I pester you with, I'd like to pose a diving question. I'm in the market for an underwater digital video system before our Australia/papa new guinea trip in October. I'm leaning toward a Sony trv900 with either an Amphibico navigator or a light and motion stingray or blue something or other housing. I don't know what your experience is with video, but I do know you have done underwater photography. I'd be interested in hearing any recommendations, suggestions, etc., you may have. thanks >> Wow, thanks for this input... Friends and I have been going over just this question the last several months... Had/am big fan of the many, too many Sony products (had the TR101 series in the late eighties, now, still the single chip/CCD TR700's.... And need badly to upgrade. Have Sony's TRA hsg. that will accommodate the TRV900... and have handled Amphibico's products way back when and recently... only know Light and Motion's from pix, others relating their experiences... And then there's the... what is it now? VTX2000? The longer three chip SONY... have used this camera and Amphibico in Fiji... and seen it's results recently, giving a pitch in SACTO at the WMC last weekend... It's a great product... Well, making this resp. finished... Either camera, hsg. will do (for me)... I like the longer combo. for handling u/w, the smaller units get very "shaky" for me underwater... Will send this msg. on over to a couple of concerned parties for their perusal, input...  Oh, and the most/more impt. help I might render is how to go about shopping for such gear... Take a look at CNet.com (you'll be glad you did), and Deal-Finder.com after you decide on a source for further discount possibilities. Bob Fenner

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