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I just got back from a Caribbean cruise in which I visited Panama, Costa Rica, and Belize. I did a cave tubing excursion in Belize, and canoe trip that included swimming under a waterfall in Panama. I had bought and taken an Ewa Marine D-MM, but it was awkward, and didn’t work well with my camera. Before I bought the Ewa Marine, I had been looking at the Nikon WP-CB4. It is a hard plastic case designed specifically for my Nikon Coolpix 7900. If has buttons to control all features of the Coolpix 7900. So after having many problems with the Ewa Marine bag in Belize, I decided to get rid of it (probably sell it on eBay), and get a WP-CB4. But searching the net, the WP-CB4 seems to have been discontinued. Personally I think this is kind of raw on Nikon’s part. I have had the 7900 less than a year, and I don’t think it had been out very long when I bought it. Yet the underwater housing for it has already been discontinued? Whatever. Place after place I searched said discontinued, backordered, out of stock, etc. I found one place in New York that didn’t say this. I placed an order for it, but I fully expect to be told it is not available. It is worth a shot. I am not planning on going anywhere where I might need it for a while. But if I can get it, I might as well. If the camera dies for some reason before I get a chance to get back to the caribbean, I might be able to buy a used Coolpix 7900 at that point for relatively cheap. Or I could turn around and resell the WP-CB4.

Ewa Marine D-MM

SUMMARY: These types of bags are awkward to use, and do not work well with all types of cameras.

I bought this for my Nikon Coolpix 7900. According to Ewa Marine this is the model best suited for my camera. I was going on a Caribbean Cruise and planned to do some snorkeling or cave tubing, or something involving water. In the past we have bought disposable underwater 35mm film cameras. But I had this nice digital camera, and I wanted to be able to take digital photos in a wet environment. When we were in Grand Cayman two years ago, the excursion photographer had an Ewa-Marine bag for her digital SLR and flash unit. It seemed to work great. I researched and found the model that was supposed to work for my camera was D-MM and I could buy it for under $100. On the other hand, Nikon makes a shell specifically for my 7900 camera, but it cost over $200. I decided to go with the Ewa Marine. First, I found the directions kind of confusing. Then when I placed my camera inside the bag, it was kind of loose. I was also worried about the lens on my camera which extends when turned on. Would it hit the glass? What would happen if it hit resistance?
Anyway, on the cruise, we booked a cave tubing excursion. The camera was awkward to manipulate when inside the bag. It worked in daylight. When we entered the mouth of the cave, and the camera needed the flash, the flash would reflect off of the inside of the bag’s glass, and the camera would take a picture of a white blur. Without the flash, the camera could not a take a decent picture in the available light…at least with the settings I was using, and it would be difficult to set up in this awkward bag floating on a river.
As we left the cave and I had light again, I was able to take pictures again. The pictures all seem fuzzy maybe due to water drops on the glass? At one point I went to take a picture, and my camera showed a lens error. This happens when it tries to extend the lens and hits an obstruction. Apparently it hit the inside of the glass. I had gotten this before and can usually cycle the power off and on to fix it. But this time with the lens halfway out, I couldn’t get it to do anything. I stopped on the side of the river and took the camera out of the bag, and couldn’t get it to reset. I sealed the camera back in the bag to mess with it at the end of the river. Later, on the bus back to our ship, I did successfully get my camera to reset by slapping it softly but firmly on my hand while cycling the power.
I found the bag very disappointing. They may be great for a different type of camera. I don’t think they will work well with any camera that has a lens that extends. I don’t think they will work well for a camera that has a built in flash.
I will probably sell this bag on eBay, and maybe buy the Nikon underwater shell.
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I love Hong Kong Martial arts movies, especially ones with Jackie Chan. But at one point many of his movies were just not available in the United States. I have ordered some from Hong Kong, and elsewhere. Doing some research on the internet I found that there were some stores in Toronto Canada that carried many Hong Kong films. And living in Rochester, NY, it isn’t too difficult to take a weekend trip to Toronto.
So one weekend my wife made reservations in Toronto. We drove up Friday night, and checked into the hotel.
I found the particular video store I had found had three locations, each in a different section of town.
On Saturday, we visited the first store. They had a selection of Jackie Chan videos that I didn’t own in both DVD and VCD format. I bought a couple. There were a small handful of Asian stores nearby.
We visited the next place which was near Pacific Mall. I visited the video store, and bought a couple more videos.
Then we visited Pacific Mall. This mall is great. It is inside a large open building, and is filled with rows of small Asian oriented shops selling everything from jewelry to books and videos, and plants. I have never seen anything like it. My wife and spent hours wandering up and own the aisles exploring the tiny stores.
We visited the third place and it was set in among a bunch of Asian produce sellers.
So visit Toronto today for a small taste of Asia.




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