Handler on the Aquatica A5000
Maurico Handler is a professional underwater photojounalist and advanced under water photography instructor-His professional workshops are held in the British Virgin Islands as well as onboard the Turks and Caicos Agressor. You may contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
After testing the new Aquatica 5000 under challenging field conditions in the Turks and Caicos I can report that the housing is very reliable and a exciting addition to the new digital line by the Canadian manufacturer.
Digital photography is a great tool for the serious underwater photographer and the Nikon line of Coolpix cameras is second to none. When the camera is installed in the all aluminum A5000 housing with the new single easy to open latch system it is ready to be taken down. The complete package of housing, tray-grip and removeable wide angle glass lens is small and ergonomically comfortable. The LCD screen is bright and the built in shade helps in bright light conditions.
All key CP5000 control buttons are available in the housing for complete control of the camera functions including review, image quality-size as well as all menu features. I was able to shift between a high quality jpeg, to a high end Tiff and a 40-second video clip mode with ease using this versatile system. I love the size of the complete unit. After attaching a removable clip to the housing and my personal BC, I was able to carry it as a backup and secondary unit without drag or weight.
I did not try the unit in macro mode. All images produced were wide angles in a manual mode overriding all auto features of the camera. I also opted to use natural light instead of strobe light for all images. I like the feel of digital natural light images, as these cameras are extremely sensitive to light and require just a small fill to achieve great images with a natural light balance.
This housing is very different than the A995 for the CP995 camera. They canot really be compared, as the two cameras are ergonomically completely different. If you must choose on over the other base it on the actual camera features which, by the way, are very similar with the exception of highest quality settings. Both housings will allow you full access to all key camera controls. This is what you are looking for in a professional housing. Full control, professional long lasting build and realistic working depths.
Aquatica has done a fine job in housing this camera. They have attacked the design, building and delivery of a housing in a short period of time. In a market that changes every three months if not sooner, this is a gargantuan achievement.
Photos Copyright (C) 2002 Maurico Handler