HV-20 fits into a Sony camcorder underwater housing - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Canon VIXIA Series AVCHD and HDV Camcorders
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Old May 4th, 2007, 11:26 AM   #16
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Thanks for the pics, Austin! Very helpful. I think I am going to bite the bullet today as well.

Have you figured out how to control the camera yet? Are you using the remote control?
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Old May 4th, 2007, 12:02 PM   #17
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yeah i'm just using the remote, above water it works fine through the housing. i'm going shopping today for some kind a water tight bag, and i'll test it out underwater, if the sun would come out...
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Old May 4th, 2007, 12:52 PM   #18
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Ziplock?

DB>)
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Old May 4th, 2007, 01:06 PM   #19
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essentially, we've got an REI here, and i know they have waterproof bags that are a little more robust than a ziplock
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Old May 4th, 2007, 03:59 PM   #20
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I'm back from Mexico - some observations on the housing

Hi all,

Sorry I'm so late in posting - I've been without internet at a friend's condo for a few days. I'm back in Los Angeles now....

I'm very happy with the housing setup. Mine was very similar to what you guys have created with the housing, but I didn't drill any new holes. I didn't mind the slight rubbing of the edge of the LCD screen. No vignetting, luckily.

I did put my remote into a ziplock made by Aloksak (two actually, one within the other). This enabled me to turn the camera on and off, and to zoom. Not much control - and sometimes I didn't even bring the remote into the water with me.

I was just snorkeling, so I didn't take the camera more than about ten feet down at any time. And since I was snorkeling, I was often fighting slight bumps from waves. My best footage was captured when I was in lagoons and cenotes, or when the inertia of my own motion kept surface waves from having too much effect. I'll take this housing on shallow reef dives this Summer down near Mahahual and see how it goes without all the surface turbulence.

Knowing what I was shooting was also a problem. It didn't matter that the image in the viewfinder was reversed - light conditions underwater usually make the Sony mirrored viewfinder pretty much useless anyway. I just needed to see the red record button to make sure that the camera was actually on. The trick to framing with this setup is knowing where the top of the field of vision will be. I was often eyeballing the case itself and consequently shooting too high. I would recommend making a few test shots out of the water so that you will be able to judge your framing by the position of the housing in the water. This camera in this housing actually seems to point upwards a tiny bit - which helps to avoid vignetting, but means that you have to point the housing down more than your would expect to frame shots correctly.

I also found that weighting the case to near neutral buoyancy gave me much steadier shots and more control over motion. I wrapped up a couple of big lead weights in socks and stuffed them into the housing with the camera. Next time, I'll try to set up a system of external weights that I can screw into the tripod mount on the bottom of the housing. Some kind of improvised underwater pod or tripod to go on the bottom of that stack would be nice for shallow-water steady shots from the bottom.

Has anyone come across external housing weight solutions like this?

Without the ability to control the camera's focus and exposure while in the water, I was limited in my setup choices. Sometimes I just put the camera on full automatic - and 99% of the time it didn't focus on the glass of the housing or stuff floating in the water. At other times, I set the camera on AE (program mode) and present the focus to a certain distance, then moved the camera so that fish and objects moved through that focus range.

And I tried setting up more precise focus and exposure settings before I got into the water, but conditions can change so drastically from one part of a reef or cenote to another, that quite a bit of that footage was under or over exposed.

I'm in the process of pulling my 24p footage of my tapes using Connect HD, and I'll put together a small sample video for you guys to check out.

Thanks for being patient!

Gerrit
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Old May 4th, 2007, 08:30 PM   #21
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here's what i did for support for mine...

http://file.meyersproduction.com/hv2...%20support.JPG

http://file.meyersproduction.com/hv2...20support2.JPG

this made it much easier it swim with, and made it more or less neutrally buoyant (sinks a little)

went to the local outdoors shop and picked up a water tight bag made for little point and shoot digitals that has a clamping rail top. and just used a lanyard to attach it to the cam, the contoller worked fine under water.

as gerrit said the mirror is tough to use, and you have to get used to the backwards thing when you can see the viewfinder.

but overall for the price i'm really happy as well.
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Old May 30th, 2007, 02:16 PM   #22
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underwater footage....

http://file.meyersproduction.com/hv2...%20HD%206k.mov
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Old January 8th, 2008, 11:40 AM   #23
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Equinox XChaser Mechanical Housing

Just received the Equinox XChaser Mechanical Housing from B&H. It is specifically designed for the HV-20. The housing is meant to be used for snorkeling or surfing where you're not too far from the surface. Its depth rating is 45'.

I've never used an underwater housing before and never did any underwater videography. The XChaser does not have a lens filter adapter for color correction with this model as far as I know. It's not necessary, since the housing isn't designed to go to any great depth and there should be ample light penetration.

Equinox recommends using the HV-20 in auto settings this housing even though there is some mechanical control - basically for zooming and start/standby.

As far as downsides, the only thing that annoyed me is you could not get a full unobstructed view of the LCD screen, because one of the housing fins partially occludes it. Otherwise the camera looks perfectly positioned in this clear lucite container.

I'm departing on a cruise to Cozumel tomorrow. I'll be back in a week or so to report on the outcome of this adventure in newbie underwater videography.
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Old December 7th, 2008, 11:16 PM   #24
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Sony housings for the HV20

So Sony has got the SPK-HCA, HCB, HCC and HCD. Guess what! They all look the same. I have to order one online, so can any of these owners please comments on whether all of them are the same ?
Also, is there a link for the 100$ sale on the SPK-HCB's ? Could find anything less than 150/- on ebay..
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Old December 8th, 2008, 01:01 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anmol Mishra View Post
So Sony has got the SPK-HCA, HCB, HCC and HCD. Guess what! They all look the same. I have to order one online, so can any of these owners please comments on whether all of them are the same ?
Also, is there a link for the 100$ sale on the SPK-HCB's ? Could find anything less than 150/- on ebay..
I have the HCB, as far as i know the HCC is smaller, but i'm not sure. the HCB works fine, it's a bit tight if you don't modify the plates, i modified mine (just drill a new hole and put a 1/4" thumb screw on in it).

i picked my HCB up from amazon for a little over $100 a year or so ago.
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Old December 9th, 2008, 01:06 PM   #26
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HCB's have been "closed out" for a while, thus why they aren't found cheap anymore. AFAIK all the shells are pretty close in dimension and should work with minor modification to the sled/plate - just a matter of lining up the camera properly.
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Old January 2nd, 2009, 06:41 AM   #27
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Just a question about using the remote with the HV20 underwater - mine's been sent off for a warranty repair so I can't test this myself...
How accurate do you have to be in aiming the remote at the IR sensor? Do you have to point the remote at the front of the cam, or can it be used from behind the camera? Do you think the remote would be usable if taped to the side of the SPK-HCB? Maybe if it was taped to the front side of the LCD mirror it would be pointing towards the IR sensor?

Thanks,
John
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Old January 3rd, 2009, 12:57 AM   #28
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remote in a bag

you have to point it right down the barrel to get it to work, and have to be pretty close as the water greatly reduces its range. i've found that sometimes it works from the side, but most of the time you have to put it right up against the front port.



Quote:
Originally Posted by John Wiley View Post
Just a question about using the remote with the HV20 underwater - mine's been sent off for a warranty repair so I can't test this myself...
How accurate do you have to be in aiming the remote at the IR sensor? Do you have to point the remote at the front of the cam, or can it be used from behind the camera? Do you think the remote would be usable if taped to the side of the SPK-HCB? Maybe if it was taped to the front side of the LCD mirror it would be pointing towards the IR sensor?

Thanks,
John
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Old January 3rd, 2009, 04:46 PM   #29
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Thanks for the reply. I'm thinking of using if for surfing so it sound like i'd be better off just leaving the thing running the entire time and leaving the remote safe and dry - i'll have enough other things to worry about. The only control i'd really like to have control over is the zoom.

Looks like I may have to trade the HV20 for a HC9.
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