Coverage of the Digital Shootout
Nauticam USA is proud to be a premier sponsor of the Digital Shootout 2011 in Bonaire. This is the fourth installment of our daily coverage of the shootout.
Day four, and back on the boats to head out to Klein Bonaire. These dive guides are doing a great job with this large group, sharing their special spots for things like frogfish and seahorses. I'm shooting wide today, the 10-22 behind the Zen 230mm dome again as I am just so pleased with the sharpness I am getting out of this combination. I want to get some shots of people with their gear, heads down in their quest to get that perfect shot.
Despite the fact that some of these folks are very focused on getting close to their subjects, they are doing a good job of staying off of live reef. The Digital Shootout staff and the Divi Dive staff have been stressing the importance of not damaging the reef, and made it clear right at the beginning that anyone sacrificing living reef to get their shot will be removed from the competition, and depending on the severity, may be banned from diving here. They are serious about it and well they should be. As u/w photographers, we are truly ambassadors for the sea. Many people will get their experience of the ocean through our eyes and that charges us with a huge responsibility to set a good example for our fellow divers and do as little damage as possible to an ecosystem that is not only fragile but under attack from many different sources. However, it should not stop at merely this, because the fact is that divers actually are not even close to the biggest threat that reefs face. Water quality issues, temperature increase, over-fishing, invasive species - these issues are what is killing our reefs, not a kicked sea fan. So we need to start by not kicking that sea fan, absolutely, but we as ambassadors for the ocean need to carry that message back to life on land and make a difference.
I'm finally getting a bit more organized at getting these cameras ready to go out, which is a good thing as I'm sending out every one of our housings pretty much every day. Everything has been working well and I'm very pleased not to be having a lot of gear issues. Our LX-5 housing and camera is proving to be very popular with the demo gear uses. Panasonic is not as big of a name in the US in the consumer camera world but they are making some excellent cameras and definitely seem to be on the upswing. LX-5 is the most capable, best imaging compact camera I have used. It's ideally suited for underwater shooting, with features like RAW mode, manual exposure, excellent TTL, TTL in manual mode, and AVCHD video.