The Mike’s Dive Cameras perfect package series continues with a Canon compact camera set-up that includes wet-interchangeable lenses and a strobe light. As always, the “Perfect Package” aims to hit the sweet spot of its chosen range; the goldilocks zone of affordability, size and quality. Something that is not too big or not too small, not too fancy but extremely useful and well tested. Something that is just right. This month’s perfect package is the Canon G9XII camera with Fantasea FG9X housing, Inon S-2000 strobe and Weefine Fisheye and close-up lenses.
About the Canon G9XII camera:
The Canon G9XII is the second generation of the Canon’s G9 range and comes with all the features underwater photographer might need, from easy to use uw modes to full manual exposure and RAW capture. The G9XII is the little brother of the popular G7XII camera. It is slightly more compact in comparison and comes with a smaller slightly slower lens. Although generally considered a hinderance, the smaller lens of the G9XII benefit underwater photographers as it allows more flexibility when selecting wet-interchangeable wide-angle lenses. Although the G7XII is a more substantial camera on topside its usability is somewhat limited underwater.
The G9XII camera has a large touch screen user interface that means that there are some limitations of what functions you can use when inside the case. Luckily the Fantasea FG9X housing is designed cleverly and with additional touch screen push buttons you can reach all crucial features and settings. The camera’s touch screen menus can also be sorted and re-arranged to better suit the Fantasea housing controls. If you are used to the standard jog-wheel-4-way button layout that almost all contemporary digital cameras come with, the user interface of the G9XII might frustrate at the beginning. But fear not. You’ll soon learn how to use it and realise it is not a bother at all.
All-in-all the G9XII is a compact powerhouse with large 1” sensor that produces high-quality images and high-definition video. The 28-84mm zoom lens is ideal for underwater use as it allows the all-important underwater lenses to work well.
Housing and lenses:
The Fantasea FG9X housing is a sturdy polycarbonate double O-ring case with built-in moisture alarm. It also comes with a comfortable optional hand strap and the all important M67 port thread. The 67mm thread and the reasonably short port allows the usage of almost all wide-angle lenses currently on the market. For this package I’ve selected the affordable and surprisingly high-quality Weefine WFL-04 lens. This fisheye lens has a view angle up to 160 degrees and due to it’s polycarbonate dome port it renders sharp images all the way to the corners of the frame. Although the WFL-04 has a native thread size of M52 it can be used on most M67 ports with a special adapter ring that keeps the lens flush with the port. Other wide-angle lenses you can consider are at least the classic Inon UWL-H100 M67 type2, the AOI/Fantasea UWL-09 and the Weefine WFL-01
For close-up and macro photography you also have a wide choice of lenses but for the Canon G9XII perfect package the ideal powerful, yet affordable lens is the Weefine WFL-03 +12. This compact high-quality lens is sure to help to capture the smaller things underwater.
Although the G9XII camera comes with an excellent custom white balance control the fact is that there is only one way to capture the brightest colours underwater: By bringing lots of white light with you. That is why an external strobe is an essential part of any decent underwater photography kit. The compact and smart Inon S-2000 is a perfect companion for the G9XII camera. This tiny strobe can detect the internal flash of the camera and adjust its power automatically. Manual overrides are also available for the photographers who want to experiment more. The strobe comes with a small tray and handy loc-line flexi arm that allows you to easily manipulate the strobe to needed position.
The G9XII Fantasea perfect package is the ultimate easy-to-use mid-range compact camera outfit that can produce stunning results for under £2000.00
Here’s what is included in the package:
- Canon G9XII camera (black)
- Fantasea FG9X housing
- Weefine WFL-04 fisheye lens
- Weefine M52-M67 mount adaptor
- Weefine UWL-03 +12 close-up lens
- Inon S-2000 strobe head
- Inon Z-joint
- Weefine Flexi arm ¾” loc-line
- Weefine fibre optic cable (with Inon adapter)
TOTAL PRICE: £1899.00
(save up to £140.00 when you buy the items as a package!)