What kind of lens do you use for your macro photography? I've been looking at a $1600 Nikkor (I can justify it for work) but I'm not sure what kind of flash I'd have to get to be able to catch fish.
Thanks for your comments. I'm glad you're a Nikon guy as I am, too. Most of the shots here were with a D3 and 18mm/f2.8 lens (an oldie but a goodie). The closeup of the shrimps were with a nikkor 105mm micr lens.
You mentioned a $1600 Nikkor for macro? I know practically all the lenses there are for Nikon and I can't put my finger on a macro lens that costs that much. A used 200mm f/4 micro? I haven't used that one myself but I've read it's probably the best macro lens as the next most expensive one is half that which is the one I use, the Nikon 105mm micro. But in the case with aquarium photography, I don't know if you need a focal length that high since you'll probably be sitting right next to your tank. If you were using the 200mm you'd have to sit a few feet away, but the optics are probably worth it (I'm just saying you don't need a far focal length since you have control of your enviornment; if you were shooting insects then the longer focal length is great).
I tried a few flash setups on my shots but really didn't have much success... I used the SB-900 by itself, then as the master with SB-600's with umbrellas. They really came out flat but those were for the full aquarium shots. Just for shots of the shrimps I could see using flash bringing out even more detail; however, the ones I have posted here are all without flash. I shoot aperture priority most of the time but anytime I need sharp pictures of fast moving things like dogs/birds/fish, I go to shutter priority. For my closeups of the shrimps in this thread, they were shot at 1/250s f/4 with no flash and the auto iso was around 1600. I don't think they were very good shots or anything, just saying their exif data if it helps because shrimps/fish could be difficult and I know I'm still learning. I just want to emphasize that with today's cameras with great high iso levels, and with the abundant lights from the aquarium, you should have no problem taking pictures of moving fish/shrimp without flash.
If you're on the look out for good lens prices be sure to check out fredmiranda.com's buy/sell forum - that's where I've gotten like 90% of my lenses for way cheaper than retail and I say more reliable than 3bay
Also, why use the 36W archaea instead of the 27W? I think it's narrower and would probably fit your tank better. I'm getting a ADA 45H in January and will probably go custom dimmable LED (I don't want to change a $35 bulb every year).
I actually didn't see the 27W one back when I was shopping for it. I went to aqua forest and I thought the 36W was good. If I was shopping now I'd definitely consider that one because the one sided mount is cleaner than the back mount on the 36W I am using. When you get the 45H be sure to post up a tank journal! =) I'd like to see its progress =)