Underwater Strobe Recommendations?

Discussion in 'Lighting Equipment' started by nathan_kennedy, Oct 24, 2005.

  1. I am going to Cozumel Mexico soon & plan to take underwater photos using my Canon Powershot A85 in the underwater housing Canon makes for that model. I need a wireless slave strobe to bring out colors at 80 feet below the surface. I've seen much info on the importance of using a strobe for underwater photography, but no recommendations on which brands/models work best. I'm looking at the Sunpak G Flash Underwater strobe (mostly because it is cheaper than all the others by a long shot) and wondered if anyone has tried that one out. There are similar Ikelite, Bonica, Sealife and Sea & Sea strobes available but they are all MUCH more expensive. The Sunpak is rated to 148 feet and I do not plan to go that deep or deeper. Any recommendations?
  2. Hi Nathan,
    The depth rating isn't really the issue. The "G" is fine for recreational depths. My wife uses one on her S-75 with a Canon housing and has gotten some nice diver portraits and reef fish shots. The biggest limitations are its limited output and the fixed bracket/handle. In many situations, to avoid backscatter (reflections off minute particles suspended in the water) you need to get the flash off the camera and feather the cone of light across the subject. To do that, you can jury-rig some kind of quick-release or if you expect to get in deeper, buy an articulated arm (which will cost as much as the "G" itself). Unfortunately, UW shooting is expensive and addictive. But what the heck, you can always use the arm on one of the twin strobes you'll ultimately buy for the dome- port housed DSLR that you will just have to buy:) That said, the "G" is a good match for a small housed digicam and a great way for you to get your feet wet. Not to mention, it makes a great strobe for sea kayaking and other potentially wet shooting situations.
    I hope your trip to Coz isn't too soon. From what I've seen on the TV news it looks like they really got hammered down there.
    Good luck.

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