The Beneath the Sea show took place March 25-27 in the Meadowlands Convention Center in Secaucus, New Jersey. This is one of the largest dive shows in the United States and this year seemed to have an excellent turn out. Maybe the excessive snow and resulting cabin fever from this year’s winter lent a hand to the good turnout. This year BTS celebrated Capt. Jaques-Yves Cousteau as their Legend of the Sea. In attendance were his son, Jean-Michel, and grandchildren Celine and Fabien.
The Cousteau name is both legendary and synonymous with the promotion of the marine realm. As a marine biologist, it was nice to see both the achievements of Capt. Cousteau and the conservation work of the rest of the Cousteau family celebrated in such a venue. Ocean Future’s Society.
In terms of photography equipment, BTS did not see a lot of new product releases but there was a good range of manufacturers and vendors there with more than ample ranges of products to display.
One of the more interesting products I saw at the show was the Nautilus Lifeline. This is a personal safety device, which consists of a Marine VHF radio and GPS. It has an 8 mile radio range, an LCD display that tells the diver their GPS coordinates, and an emergency mode that transmits their coordinates. I can see this technology being very useful in places with strong currents to add an extra safety element to diving.
Joe Ifi of SeaLife showed me a range of products – most notably the new Mini II (SL330) compact camera. This camera is 9 megapixels, rated to 130 ft, shockproof from 6 ft, and crushproof (they have a graphic of a car with one wheel parked on the camera).
Scott Gietler showed me a range of products available from blue photo including products from SeaCam and Sea and Sea including housings for the Nikon D7000.
Hubert Lacour was also on hand to show me a variety of Dyron products. I was particularly impressed with a circular Fisheye lens for the Canon G12. The lens fits in a Dyron housing and port combination and offers a unique wide-angle option.
Every time I went near the Backscatter booth they seemed to be swamped with patrons looking at their large variety of products. Backscatter was displaying housings from Aquatica, Nauticam, and Subal including offerings for the Nikon D7000 and the Canon 7D. I also got to have a good look at the zen mini-dome – and definitely liked what I saw.