Saturday, August 22, 2009

Tech gear

Loose thoughts by Bjorn Landfeldt

It may be a late revelation, but it seems to me as if the tech dive industry is moving towards a low cost breakthrough. I was searching a bit yesterday and found some threads on fora such as scubaboard about new tech dive gear. For example, EDGE-HOG, Highly Optimised Gear. It seems there is a factory somewhere in Taiwan that makes much of the techie gear and things are re-badged under different names. For example, look at this regulator from HOG.

This looks surprisinly much like an APEKS to me.

Tech Diving Limited is selling the HOG second stage plus a first stage that also looks much like an APEKS first stage together with an SPG and hoses for $249. The Wings on the HOG web site also retails for $199 about half of what looks like a standard OMS or DiveRite wing.

Does this signal the start of a price collapse for tech dive gear? If it is possible to manufacture and retail for such low prices and the gear is very similar, interesting development. It will be interesting to follow the development and see if there will be any reviews of this stuff.

New Canon G11 - even better for Underwater photos

Loose thoughts by Bjorn Landfeldt

Canon has just released the new G11 compact and it has some interesting features for UW shooters.

Most notably, Canon has reversed the trend of hunting for increased pixel density and instead gone for image quality. The new G11 has a 10 Mpixel sensor which is significantly down from the G10's 14 Mpixels. Canon wanted to create a camera that can truly work as a replacement for a DSLR in some situations, such as journalism where photographers may want to take photos without being too intrusive. This camera is built to provide much better low light and difficult light results. For an underwater photographer that sounds heavenly.

I am waiting for dpreview to test its capabilities. It is clear that it will be much much cheaper to go G11 and housing than any dSLR and housing / ports.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Canon D5 Mark 2 Underwater video review

Loose thoughts by Bjorn Landfeldt

Backscatter has posted a review of the Canon 5D mark 2. There are lots of reviews around about its capabilities and pros and cons but what makes this one stand out is that it is a dedicated underwater review and also about the specific task of producing underwater video. Who would have thought a couple of years ago that DSLR would come this far.

The resulting video is stunning

View the 720p video for some nice shots of dolphins and sharks in the Bahamas. I know this is a bit of a promotional video urging us all to open up our wallets, but it is clear one can create very nice video photography with this gear. Unfortunately, the initial setup cost (without the scooter) is around USD 10.000, a new car.

Well, one day when housings get cheaper perhaps.