Report: BOOT Show 2016

Page 1: Subal, World Shoot Out, Seacam.
Page 2: Nauticam, Underwater Photography Global Championships, Keldan, Isotta, Orcalight.
Page 3: Easydive, H2O Photo Tools, Subtronic, BS Kinetics, Inon, Hugyfot.

Takuya Torii, David Doubilet and Imran Ahmad enjoying the show

BOOT Show Day 3

My third and the final day of the show. BOOT lasts for 9 full days, so the exhibitors were feeling the strain by now! Interestingly, the show did not feel as busy as it had on Saturday, however, the halls and aisles were still pretty packed.

Seacam and UWF’s Georg Nies with his early model Leica X-U camera. Georg did some of the early testing of prototypes for Leica.

I carried on visiting booths around the hall.


The Easydive booth was packed every time I tried to catch Fabio Benvenuti so I only managed to catch up with him on the last day. Easydive offer three housing models and a large range of accessories. Uniquely, the housings accept a large number of different current and future camera models as they control the camera via electronic inputs rather than conventional mechanical ones. Each housing carries a unique serial number. If the owner decides to upgrade his or her camera, he or she can use an upgrade kit and a “firmware update” purchased from Easydive to allow the housing to communicate with the user’s new camera.

The three housings primarily revolve around the sizes of camera bodies. The Leo 3 Plus can accommodate large pro bodies like the Nikon D4 and Canon 1D-X (and D5/1D-X Mk. II). The housing communicates with the camera via a USB connection with a mechanical zoom ring to control the lens function. The Leo 3 Plus has a large port diameter to allow the use of wide bodied lenses.

The Leo 3 is designed for most SLR bodies like the Canon 700D, 5D or 7D series, Nikon D7200, D610, D800 and D810. As with the Leo Plus, the housing firmware can be updated if the user chooses to update their camera (in this instance to the D500 for example). Once again, the connection to the camera is via USB.

Both the Leo 3 and Leo 3 Plus are supplied with 2 Nikonos bulkheads and 2 fiber optic ports as well as two more ports for vacuum system, hydrophone or HDMI output, they are also both fitted with a large port diameter to allow the use of wide bodied lenses.

Lastly, the Leo 3 Wi is designed for smaller bodied SLR and mirrorless cameras. Uniquely, control is via a wifi network that the housing creates within the housing. The camera is then simply connected to the network.

In terms of the controls, there is a “Switch” button that accesses a secondary menu for each button. LEDs in the housing provide a visual indication of its command status.

The Leo 3 Wi has one Nikonos port, two fiber optic ports and an accessory port for a vacuum or other accessories. It is fitted with the Leo 2 port.

In each case, the housing is machined for a solid 15kg block of aluminum. The company uses a 5 axis milling machine to remove around 13kg of metal. The electronic control buttons are magnetic, so there is no through housing penetration which ensures watertightness.

Fabio also pointed out that the buttons do not get affected by pressure, so will function to the 150m rated pressure. The electronics in the housing are sealed in resin so if the housing leaks, they should survive.

The catches have a simple design to ease unlatching the housing after it has been subjected to pressure:

Easydive can supply their housings with their own bayonet port fitting (type two or three depending on housing choice) and port lock. If the user prefers, they can supply the housing fitted with Seacam or Subal Type 3 port.

Fabio showed me a prototype of a fitting for a magnifying viewfinder for the housings. It’s position is adjustable so as to allow it to be used with different camera models in the housing

The company also produces a range of other products including two video lights. The Revolution lights were used in the film Momentum and are available in 13,000 lumen and 4,000 lumen output models.

They feature crystal lenses that focuses and shapes the LEDs output and a film that allows for a diffuse 110° beam.

Both models have a CRI of 90% with a color temperature of 5,600°K. A magnetic switch provides 3 step adjustment of the light’s output. The lights are powered by an LiFe batteries, which are safe and do not off gas during discharge or charging cycles.

The lights are sealed and are charged via an external charging port. They have a burn time of 50 minutes at full power and a recharge time of 2 hours.

Matteo Bubani, Benvenuti and Mattia Fontana of Easydive

Easydive have an accessory brand called Carbonarm. As the name suggests, the company supplied carbon fiber strobe or light arms, in 4 different buoyancies (diameters). The carbon fiber is not lacquered, as the natural carbon finish is tougher and more resistant to water ingress and delamination.

The arms are available in 18, 24, 34 and 50cm lengths.

Easydive also manufacture arm clamps. Made of 60 micron hard coated aluminum with Inox bolts and springs, the clamps are specifically designed to give very precise control of the tension and hence control of the arms.

Easydive supply a range of other accessories, including trays, locline arms and ball mounts.

Matteo Bubani showed me two other new accessories. Firstly, a simple velcro strap that secures the strobe arms when transporting the housing and secondly a mount that allows the attachment of a dive computer to an arm system.

The mount is hollow and can be opened, in order to provide a sealed receptacle that can be used to hold car keys for example.

Rico Besserdich with his new manual of underwater photography for the DIWA agency

H2O Photo Tools

Stefan Horvath showed me the cold water extension controls that he makes for Inon’s S2000 strobes.

He also has arm clamps anodized in a variety of bright colors.

He showed me a prototype for an aluminum housing rated to 100m for the GoPro HERO 3, 3+ and 4 Black and Silver editions.

It features M46 threads and H2O Photo Tools supply an M46 macro lens that can be attached to provide a macro solution.

Stefan Horvath and Herbie Schmitz

H2O Photo Tools are very much one of the features of dive shows worldwide. If you have been to a dive show, it is very likely that you have seen their booth. It is also very likely that working tirelessly on the stand has been Herbie Schmitz.

Herbie and David Doubilet enjoy a joke at BOOT 2016

Herbie has been a feature of dive shows for years and his humor, friendliness and genial attitude has been enjoyed by us all. Herbie “plans” that this show will be his last. We all hope that we see him again soon and that he enjoys a well-earned retirement. We will miss you Herbie!

Lara and Fenya Tick of Subtronic


German strobe manufacturer Subtronic were showing their new LED strobe.

The Sirius is a unique product, with a 50,000 lumen output offering an underwater guide number of 5.6 to 6.4. It is available in several configurations, including a choice of 4,000°K output with a CRI of 90 or a 5,000°K output with a CRI of 80.

The recycle time of the strobe is very quick, with up to ten continuous flashes at full power.

It is available with an internal or external battery option. The former provides around 1,000 flashes. Recharge time is 2 hours.

Output control is via TTL with Nikon, Canon or Pentax cameras, as well as 6 manual power levels. Each strobe can be fired via two cable types, with options for fiber optic, Nikonos 5 pin or S6 bulkheads.

Nauticam UK and Underwater Vision’s Alex and Kat Tattersall

BS Kinetics

BS Kinetics has expanded their range of carbon fiber housings to include a housing for the Sony a7 II. The housing will include as standard a flat port, leak sensor and zoom gear for around €2,000. It will be shipping in two weeks.

Bodo Sutterer showed me his new housing for the Sony CX-240 camcorder.

The camera and housing combination provides excellent HD video at a price of around €1,000. This provides an excellent step up for those seeking to “step up” from GoPro or other action cams.

BS Kinetics will be supplying an OEM TTL solution (like many other housing manufacturers at the show). This will offer both electronic and optical outputs and is available imminently for Nikon cameras, with Canon and Sony options to follow. It will be available as an option on new housings from BS Kinetics, as well as an option for retro fitting to existing or legacy housings.

Future confirmed housing option from the company include a housing for the Nikon D500 available from around April, the Canon C300 Mk. 2 digital cinema camera and the Sony FS5 4K camera. The latter C300 housing will retail at around €7,000, which will include an external monitor. Bodo and team have managed to enable LANC control of the camera from the housing’s interface.

Adam Hanlon and Takuya Torii (picture by Herbie Schmitz)


Takuya Tori from Inon was on hand to show the company’s new mounting system for the standard (not Dive) GoPro housings.

These allow the use of Inon’s macro and wide-angle GoPro lenses without a mounting cage i.e. directly onto the GoPro housing. They are supplied with a bracket that allows them to be attached to an Inon Mount Grip, or directly on to a tripod, as well as a standard GoPro mount.

It can be fitted with a 1” ball as well if required.

Martin Steinmeier and the Laowa 60mm f/2.8 Ultra-Macro Lens

Just as I was leaving Inon/H20 Photo Tool’s booth, Martin Steinmeier called me over to the UW Photo Partner booth to show me some macro images that he has created using the Venus Laowa 60mm f/2.8 Ultra-Macro Lens, a 2:1 magnification lens. He has fitted this in to a Nauticam housing, and rigged a zoom gear to give control of (manual) focus. Currently, this means shooting at a fixed aperture, although it may be possible to adapt control gears ti allow control of this too in future.

The lens provides amazing magnification and a really pleasing circular bokeh.

Shane Wasik of Basking Shark Scotland on the Water Pixel stand


My last visit of the show was with Pascal Eeckhoudt and Luc Leys on the Hugyfot stand. Pascal confirmed that they will be supporting the Nikon D500. They had their housing for the the Canon EOS7D Mark II as well as their innovative GoPro housing system and the cool radio transmitter for it that they showed at the Birmingham Dive Show. Building further on their range of GoPro compatible products, Luc showed me a new compact video light.

Powered by an intelligent RRC 2040 battery, the light offers 3500 lumen in a smooth, wide beam. Color temperature is 4000•K and it has a CRI of 90%. Output levels have a 10 step adjustment, and the light has an LCD screen and communicates with the battery in order to evaluate remaining burn time.

Burn time at full power is around 60 minutes and he light will be available from mid March at €950.

Page 1: Subal, World Shoot Out, Seacam.
Page 2: Nauticam, Underwater Photography Global Championships, Keldan, Isotta, Orcalight.
Page 3: Easydive, H2O Photo Tools, Subtronic, BS Kinetics, Inon, Hugyfot.