Very few cities have their own submarine. Pittsburgh is the home and final resting place of the USS Requin. It’s a diesel-electric sub that was built at the end of WWII. The war actually ended 3 days before the Requin’s first wartime patrol in the Pacific. She never fired a torpedo in battle.

2015 is the 25th anniversary of the USS Requin’s arrival at the Carnegie Science Center. It also marks 70 years since the sub was christened at Maine’s Portsmouth Navy Yards. Thanks to the work of many volunteers, the interior of the Requin looks and feels like she just returned from one of her sea patrols.

I was testing a prototype anti-aliasing filter for an optical manufacturer and decided the detailed interior of a submarine would be visually interesting. After shooting for just an hour or so inside the sub’s cramped quarters, I developed a tremendous respect for anyone who could spend months at a time inside these machines. Not to mention the constant smell of diesel fuel combined with the danger of being a few hundred feet below the surface. The only ex-submariner I’ve known is Chuck Aikman, an editor at PMI, who served on a nuclear attack sub.

The USS Requin is well worth a visit at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Science Center.

NOTE: This video was shot to demonstrate the Mosaic Engineering VAF-7D filter for the Canon 7D. The low-light and highly detailed nature of the sub created some ideal photographic scenarios to demonstrate the VAF-7D anti-aliasing filter. All scenes were photographed with either a 16-35mm F2.8L or a 24mm F1.4L Canon lens. The zoom was always at 16mm, wide open at F2.8. The 24mm was set between F2 & F1.4. For all the interior photography, the Canon 7D was set to ISO 800 and a "Neutral" picture style with both the contrast and sharpness at minimum settings. Both lenses appear to have excellent edge-to-edge focus.

During post-production, I used Final Cut 7's basic sharpening filter set to 18%. At ISO 800, 7D's exhibit some noise, especially in reds. All things considered, the camera looks great and the VAF-7D filter removed literally all the visible aliasing "stepping" or "jaggie" artifacts in the images. There also appears to be no morié pattern interference.

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