Review of  “Shooting Magic” DVD Photo

Review of “Shooting Magic” DVD

Alex Mustard and Peter Rowlands have teamed up to produce a must have 90-minute guide to underwater imaging using their Magic Filters. I had the opportunity to review the first copy to come to the US and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I have never used one of the Magic filters and Alex thought it would be good to have a member of his target audience take a look.

The DVD is structured around six dives with Alex in his underwater studio that give you the feeling you’re along for the fun. After each dive, the video follows Alex back on the boat to review the images shot and you’re looking right over his shoulder as he critiques and tweaks the images. We are taken along for dives on a shallow reef wall in the Red Sea, the wreck of the Giannis D and the famous Ras Mohammad site…

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Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 Macro lens review Photo

Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 Macro lens review

Ever since I first purchased a Canon back in 2005 I’ve been looking for a replacement for the excellent Nikkor 70-180 macro zoom. The Nikkor is fantastic on a DX cropped camera, zooming from around 1:3 to 1:1. I purchased the Tamron lens for use on my full-frame Canon camera, and took it on the two-week Wetpixel staff trip to the Philippines back in May.

Topside without a diopter the optical performance is superb. Topsides when used with a single element diopter, the performance is terrible, however when an achromat diopter like the Canon 500D the performance is excellent!

Continue reading for the full review and sample images…

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NOAA Coral Reef Watch releases Q1 2009 coral bleaching outlook Photo

NOAA Coral Reef Watch releases Q1 2009 coral bleaching outlook

In the latest projection by NOAA’s Coral Reef Watch, the outlook for warm water coral bleaching looks to have widespread effects in the major coral areas of the Indo-pacific and Western and South Pacific areas. As February 2009 approaches, the areas for severe bleaching will hit many of the great diving area in the Southwest Pacific and even the Great Barrier Reef spreading down to the Southern Pacific areas like Tahiti as well.

I believe this is going to be a bad upcoming year for corals. Join the discussion in the forums with your own predictions…

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Wetpixel Quarterly Collector’s Edition shipping now… Photo

Wetpixel Quarterly Collector’s Edition shipping now…

Wetpixel Quarterly Collector’s edition boxes are shipping now, but we have decided to extend the pre-sale through Friday…order now to get the sale price! We have an extremely limited quantity of the pre-stuffed boxes left, so get them while you can. Makes a great holiday gift for the underwater enthusiast!

This archival, anodized aluminum box, with laser-engraved artwork, will store and show off your first four issues of WPQ in style. The WPQ Collector’s Box features lift-off lids, are fully archival and feature finger notches on the sides to facilitate removal of the lids. Issue #3 is already officially sold out and issue #2 is running dangerously close, so this is now your only way to get them!

Wetpixel Collector’s Boxes and Team Wetpixel t-shirts are available from our new Merchandise and Swag page.

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Shawn Heinrichs in CNN feature “Killed just for their fins” Photo

Shawn Heinrichs in CNN feature “Killed just for their fins”

A story by Wetpixel’s Shawn Heinrichs is featured on the home page of CNN today, recounting his first encounter with shark finning and following with his views on the importance of sharks and the devastating impact of the practice.

Shawn recently teamed up with CNN’s Anderson Cooper team to help them uncover and expose the gruesome realities of the shark fin trade. His work will be included in their award-winning documentary Planet in Peril this year which examines the conflict between growing populations and natural resources. The full two-hour documentary airs tomorrow night, December 11, at 9pm EST on CNN.

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Dome Port Diaries - Chapter 6: Sand in the O-Ring Grease of Life Photo

Dome Port Diaries - Chapter 6: Sand in the O-Ring Grease of Life

When contemplating the combination of several events, or a single important one (such as a dive trip), we literally or mentally “cross our fingers” to ward off anything that might interfere with with our plans. When leaving nothing to chance, it’s important to remember that chance is still part of the equation. Even the things over which we have control still have a bit of chance in them.

In my case, while preparing for that maiden voyage with my very own housing, and despite exhaustive finger-crossing, and meticulous planning, something went wrong…

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Nikon announces 24.5MP D3x Photo

Nikon announces 24.5MP D3x

Nikon has announced its new flagship professional DSLR, the D3X. The new full frame sensor (24.5 megapixels) contains double the number of photosites of its predecessor, the D3, but remaining specifications are unchanged for the most part.

The camera produces 50MB 14-bit RAW files that can be converted into 140MB TIFFs. The D3X supports an ISO range from ISO 100-1600, extendable down to ISO 50 and up to 6400 equivalent with up to 5 fps continuous shooting at full resolution, or 7 fps in the 10MP DX-crop mode. The estimated street price is US$ 7,995.95.

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Sperm whale expedition to Ogasawara, Japan Photo

Sperm whale expedition to Ogasawara, Japan

Pssst! Want to come swim with sperm whales in Japan?

Sperm whales are the largest carnivores on the planet. They have big teeth and can be highly inquisitive. There are inherent risks involved with interacting with large predators like sperm whales. The areas where we will be looking for sperm whales are deep ocean, with no land nearby. There can be big swells, and occasionally big fish that swim by to check us out. To join this trip, you need to be a confident/ strong swimmer/ snorkeller in deep, open ocean, and you need to be comfortable with the prospect of facing large, potentially aggressive, open-ocean animals.

Still interested? Keep on reading… ;)

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