Boot 2007 Impressions
By Julian Scheunemann
I had a few hours time to visit the Boot 2007 show on the first day. Time was obviously too limited to see all of underwater related photo / video gear. I have focused on a few brands and products I was interested in and would like to share some impressions. All images are captioned after the text.
One year ago, I assumed 2006 is going to become the year of enhanced viewfinders. Well, enhanced viewfinders are still one of the major topics among still housing manufactures during boot show 2007.
BS Kinetics (one of two German carbon housing manufactures) produce still photo and video housings made of composite, consisting of carbon fibre and an epoxy resin. Housing design has obviously improved compared to their earlier models.
Finally, I had the chance to have a look at the Hugyfot 45° enhanced viewfinder (made by INON). The viewfinder provides an non-shrunken finder image and can be rotated for portrait shooting.
As promised, German Hugyfot distributor Andi Voeltz proudly demonstrated that the viewfinder can be removed for transportation very quickly without hassle.
Hugyfot displayed an alternative locking solution prototype: locking the housing with some suction pump.
Top Dawg has affordable video housings for several camcorder models.
I didn’t discover anything new at the Seacam booth which hasn’t already been covered at the DEMA 2006 show report. So, being a 5D shooter, I had a look at the already known Seacam 5D housing.
Sealux booth offered an entire bunch of new products. First of all, I was keen to see the new so called GV 150° finder. 150° measured from the lens axis actually means this viewfinder is angled by 30° compared to simple straight viewfinders. GV 150° finder can be rotated for portrait orientation and is user detachable for transportation. The gained working distance is quiet big. Finder is priced appr. 900€ incl. German VAT (19% - not sure, but might not apply abroad), depending on which housing you order or if you retrofit the finder. Furthermore, Sealux displayed new D80 and 400D housings and new macroports with mountable dioptres.
Beside the new 145° fisheye port for Sony HC-1 housing, Sealux displayed their new housing for the Panasonic AG-HVX200 DVCPRO HD camcorder.
Silverfish has a universal video housing pictured below the article.
Subal has cooperated with Sealux in the past in order to offer the same enhanced (straight) viewfinder (Subal GS180 / Sealux GD). After seeing the new Sealux GV 150° viewfinder, I wanted to know if they have an angled finder in the pipeline as well. But so far, there is nothing scheduled.
Like Seacam, I didn’t discover new Subal products which haven’t been covered by DEMA show report already. Displayed D80 housing was still a prototype.
With aquick view at the Subtronic booth, I found the Subtronic Nova with the new but already known strobe arm battery system.
One year ago, UK-GERMANY has presented some prototype 45° viewfinder during Boot show 2006. One year later, the viewfinder has got its final shape. But still, pricing and serial production is entirely unknown.
After many many years, UK-GERMANY finally managed to display some sunshade for their dome ports. Unbelievable, I didn’t expect it would ever happen ;)