May 06, 2015, 10:40:30 PM

Author Topic: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography  (Read 1311 times)

CanonFanBoy

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 98
  • In awe of the photography pros I see here.
Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« on: March 04, 2015, 10:32:33 PM »
I've never done any underwater photography, but I would imagine that the loss of light as one moves into deeper waters would limit things a lot. Lo and behold, I ran across this nifty housing made for the Canon 600EX-RT while browsing Adorama's website. This has got to be real cool for those that work underwater, and since Canon's flash works via radio it must open up all kinds of possibilities!

Has anyone here done any underwater flash photography using speedlites? I'd love to see some photos!

Here's a link to the housing:

http://www.adorama.com/AQFHCF600.html

Canon 70D, Canon EX 2 III, Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM, Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 IS STM, Canon EFS 18-55mm3.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon 600EX-RT x7, Canon ST-E3-RT

canon rumors FORUM

Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« on: March 04, 2015, 10:32:33 PM »

tolusina

  • Canon 7D MK II
  • *****
  • Posts: 590
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2015, 12:22:22 AM »
Skim this article........
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communication_with_submarines
Note the very low radio frequencies needed in water (especially salt water) environments and why.
Then consider that the Canon RT system operates at frequencies between 2405 MHz to 2475 MHz (2.405 GHz to 2.475 GHz).
I'd expect very limited radio range underwater, sure would love to hear your or someone's actual experiences, an interesting topic.
40 on 6

CanonFanBoy

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 98
  • In awe of the photography pros I see here.
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2015, 03:13:16 AM »
Skim this article........
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communication_with_submarines
Note the very low radio frequencies needed in water (especially salt water) environments and why.
Then consider that the Canon RT system operates at frequencies between 2405 MHz to 2475 MHz (2.405 GHz to 2.475 GHz).
I'd expect very limited radio range underwater, sure would love to hear your or someone's actual experiences, an interesting topic.

That is interesting. Like you, I would love to hear and see the experiences of others. It would be a fun topic, I think. I hope to move to Florida in another year or two, to it might be fun while snorkeling. I wonder also how the water might distort or diffuse the flash. Maybe a diffuser would not be needed? I have no idea. I didn't think of it before, but maybe surf photographers would also be interested?
Canon 70D, Canon EX 2 III, Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM, Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 IS STM, Canon EFS 18-55mm3.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon 600EX-RT x7, Canon ST-E3-RT

Ryan_

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2015, 01:37:39 PM »
I've got one of these in the mail, has been on back order for a few months ordering straight from AquaTech (they said they're redesigning them and had trouble with the manufacturer). But, I plan on using mine on camera.

There are surf photographers I've seen online, in mags, social media, etc. who use these off camera but the photos I've seen, it seems like the flash was being held by someone above water. Still really cool

privatebydesign

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • ********
  • Posts: 3712
  • Ermintrude says "moo"
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2015, 02:14:52 PM »
I had one for years, they come in PW capable and 'on camera' versions. I had the 'on camera' version and it was used with a modded ETTL cord.

I did do some pool work where I used the 'on camera' flash to control out of water off camera 550EX's.

I recently sold my SPL housing, ports and flash housing as my in water surf days are over!
Too often we lose sight of the fact that photography is about capturing light, if we have the ability to take control of that light then we grow exponentially as photographers. More often than not the image is not about lens speed, sensor size, MP's or AF, it is about the light.

Ryan_

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2015, 02:28:22 PM »
I had one for years, they come in PW capable and 'on camera' versions. I had the 'on camera' version and it was used with a modded ETTL cord.

I did do some pool work where I used the 'on camera' flash to control out of water off camera 550EX's.

I recently sold my SPL housing, ports and flash housing as my in water surf days are over!
Awesome. I remember seeing some pool portraits somewhat recently which I believe made use of flashes (have also seen some without), and the results were really cool!

Bummer you've stopped. I just recently started shooting waves/surfing from the water a few months ago and its one of the funnest things I've ever done. I do it all the time now whenever theres waves, very addicting.

kelpdiver

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 11
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2015, 03:04:52 PM »
I don't think it makes much sense to spend $700 on a little housing for a speedlite when you can get excellent UW strobes for that same money.   

http://www.adorama.com/SSYSD1.html

It's a lot easier to manually adjust the power with the directly accessible knob.   TTL UW is hit and miss depending on the subject, distance, etc.  Most of the time, people go manual.   

Strobe range is typically only about 6' at best.   You have to get really close to everything.  Wide angle lenses dominate. 

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2015, 03:04:52 PM »

fish_shooter

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 55
  • Underwater Photographer
    • salmonography.com
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2015, 04:15:22 PM »
You can get away without having to use a flash if you are snorkeling in the sun - I have done this in Hawaii. However, I shoot a lot in shallow water in Alaska and find flash indispensable due to dim light where and when salmon are spawning - see this short video of my cameras (a 1Ds2 and a 1Ds3) in action: http://www.salmonography.com/Fish-family-galleries/Videos/i-6N5sd75/A
Here I am using dedicated underwater flashes that are wired to the housings. There are separate wires for the remote controls.
Canon EOS-1D X, -1Ds Mk III, and -1Ds MkII cameras in Seacam underwater housings. Primary lenses to shoot under water: EF8-15L, EF16-35L IS, and EF100L
Other Canons: EOS-7D MkII and EOS M

CanonFanBoy

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 98
  • In awe of the photography pros I see here.
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2015, 12:19:06 PM »
I don't think it makes much sense to spend $700 on a little housing for a speedlite when you can get excellent UW strobes for that same money.   

http://www.adorama.com/SSYSD1.html

It's a lot easier to manually adjust the power with the directly accessible knob.   TTL UW is hit and miss depending on the subject, distance, etc.  Most of the time, people go manual.   

Strobe range is typically only about 6' at best.   You have to get really close to everything.  Wide angle lenses dominate.

Hey! Those look nice. I am wondering, though, how they measured the guide number... above or underwater. I see a guide number of 30 on these, while the Canon 600EX-RT is rated at 197.

Have you used ay of these underwater?

Those DO look very nice and you are right about the power adjustment being much easier. Heck, the housing for the 600EX-RT costs more than the flash itself. Thanks for the link!
Canon 70D, Canon EX 2 III, Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM, Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 IS STM, Canon EFS 18-55mm3.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon 600EX-RT x7, Canon ST-E3-RT

privatebydesign

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • ********
  • Posts: 3712
  • Ermintrude says "moo"
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2015, 06:06:45 PM »
The Canon 197 guide number is in feet when the flash head is zoomed to 200mm, or 12º fov (it is GN 60 in meters, hence 600-EX, when zoomed to 200mm), the Sea and Sea GN 30 is in meters at 80º fov. The Sea and Sea is much more powerful than a 600-EX-RT.

Both GN's are measured in air.
Too often we lose sight of the fact that photography is about capturing light, if we have the ability to take control of that light then we grow exponentially as photographers. More often than not the image is not about lens speed, sensor size, MP's or AF, it is about the light.

kelpdiver

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 11
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2015, 09:11:06 PM »
Hey! Those look nice. I am wondering, though, how they measured the guide number... above or underwater. I see a guide number of 30 on these, while the Canon 600EX-RT is rated at 197.

Have you used ay of these underwater?

Those DO look very nice and you are right about the power adjustment being much easier. Heck, the housing for the 600EX-RT costs more than the flash itself. Thanks for the link!

that particular S&S I finally used for the first time in Fiji last month, but I've used older models (YS-110) since 2008.  As noted by another, they're used for wide angle - ideally you carry two so you can get full coverage without backscatter.   Some of the time, however, I cheat and use a Sola 2000 Video light, which puts out 2000 lumens over 60 degrees and at least gets me back the color on the subject. 

For shallow water (< 15 ft), you really need all the power you can get as the sun is dominant.   These strobes work great on night dives where it's not competing. 

Zeidora

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 83
Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2015, 10:38:30 PM »
I tried to find pressure/depth rating for that gizmo, but could not find it. I would be surprised if it is rated more than 10'/3m. This may be OK for shallow snorkeling, but nothing else. Light loss at those depths is trivial.

For SCUBA underwater, you want at the very least 100'/30m, better 200'/60m. Those housings are MUCH more sturdy. Not up on it anymore, but had Hugystrobe back in the day for OM4 and Pentax LX in housing. I also agree that you need MUCH more power underwater, more on par with a studio strobe than a Canon flash. Many UW strobes also have modeling lights built-in, very useful for macro at depth.

I used TTL flash no problems back then. Just do the exposure compensation as needed. Having access to controls of the flash underwater is certainly advantageous.
5d mkII. Zeiss F-Distagon 16/2.8C/Y, Distagon 15/2.8ZE, 21/2.8ZE, 25/2ZE, 35/1.4ZE, Otus 55/1.4ZE, Makroplanar 100/2ZE. Canon MPE 65/2.8, 180/3.5Macro, 300/2.8 IS, TC1.4x III, MT 24EX, 580 EXII. RRS TVS34L & BH55, Stackshot. Arca 4x5". Zeiss DV20, Axioskop2+, Axiocam HRc, EVO40XVP.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Underwater Canon 600EX-RT Photography
« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2015, 10:38:30 PM »