1) KNOW YOUR GEAR.
Begin by familiarizing yourself with your equipment; get to know your DSLR camera and its settings well enough on land before using it with your housing. Know what ports to use along with which lenses, and plan beforehand what you intend to photograph (for example, you don’t want to make the mistake of setting up a 105mm macro lens port with a wide angle lens.) Have your settings ready and know how to adjust your settings and where the controls are for basic camera functions. The lenses you can expect to use are the 105mm macro, 60mm macro, 20mm wide angle, and 16mm fisheye.
The housing discussed will be the DX D200 – constructed of corrosion-resistant aluminum alloy with a black finish. It is durable and designed to protect your camera, with easy access to the controls. The camera installation is fairly simple, with port locks on each side to secure your camera and has a shutter able to provide feedback when pressed halfway tripping the shutter. The viewfinder have a 0.66x magnification and there is a base plate, which contains a cog to control the M/S/C focus modes, which attaches to the camera tripod mount located within the housing. Know how your housing pieces together, keep the o-rings greased, and know where the latches controls and buttons are located – buttons such as the power switch, shutter, main command dial, ISO settings, the exposure compensation button, etc.
There are 2 types of ports you will be using for the DX D200—one of which is adjustable for use between a macro 60mm and a macro 105mm. The other port is for wide angle and fisheye lenses. Both are easily removable and fitted to the housing. Pay attention to which lenses you intend to use to match them up with the proper ports. For wide-angle surface shots, you will only need the camera, a wide angle lens and a wide angle port. However, when shooting macro deeper below the surface you will need strobes.
You do this by using strobes. You will be using YS 90 Sea & Sea Strobes - these are important to illuminate your subject and bring back colors that are lost with depth in diving (such as the color red). Also, strobes help bring out clarity and make your subject sharp. Re-attachable diffusers also come with these strobes and they attach to the camera housing using strobe arm connectors. Strobe arm connectors are adjustable and reach out about a foot from the camera. Most underwater photographers use two strobes, although it is also possible to use just one. Sync cables are used to connect the strobes with the camera housing - without them your strobes will only be able to fire manually. These sync cables connect the auto trigger with the strobes you are using.
Maintenance and cleaning is KEY. It is important to check and clean your equipment before and after every dive to avoid unnecessary corrosion resulting from the saltwater, as well as to keep your equipment in consistent working condition. When first setting up your camera and housing, you want to be in a dust and sand free zone, with your set up station as clean as possible (just a grain of sand can be the difference between having a flood or a leak into the camera housing.) Use a towel to avoid accidental scratching of your ports and lenses, and also as a cushion while setting up.