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.

BOOT Show Day 2

As the BOOT show is a consumer show, it is typically much busier over the weekends. Certainly today the halls were full to the extent that it could at times be heard getting from A to B. Generally, the booth holders seemed to feel that this business had made their attendence worthwhile at the show.

Ryan Canon, Guillaume Nery and Edward Lai


I made my way to the Nauticam stand. Owner Edward Lai and Phoebe Lu were joined by Nauticam USA’s Ryan Canon who showed me through some of the company’s new products. Edward spent some time talking me through the company’s roadmap in its developing range of modern wet contact optics. These will eventually include fisheye and rectilinear wide-angle options for SLRs. Edward was telling me about the care he was taking as one tester was planning to use a prototype in Norway and he had to ensure that all moisture was completely evacuated to prevent any condensation.

Nauticam were showing an electro-optical strobe trigger that will provide TTL flash with Canon cameras. This will be shipping in the next month or so.

Whilst taking about TTL and strobe triggering, Edward informed me that their new housings for the Nikon D5 and D500 will both be equipped with a circuit board that will allow TTL strobe triggering via electric or optical outputs with Inon Z240 as well as Sea&Sea YS-D1 and YS-D2 strobes. In the case of the latter, the circuit will provide an electric output to a fiber bulkhead which will have LEDs to convert the electric signal into an optical one. Both new housing will be shipping in early March. Edward’s team has already spent time designing the housings, using CAD drawing lifted from images of the new cameras. The last step will be to physically try a camera for fit, which can only take place once the cameras are shipping.

Ryan joined us and mentioned that he could cycle strobes with Canon 1DX at full frame rate using the new strobe trigger until the camera’s buffer had filled.

Ryan then introduced me to Nauticam’s new LT housing for the RED Weapon Digital Cinema camera. The housing will also incorporate Scarlett-W and Raven cameras too. The company’s philosophy behind the new housing was not to compromise by offering an upgrade to an existing housing, but to evolve the design and build in improvements. There will be an upgrade path for existing Nauticam RED housing owners, but what shape this will take is not yet confirmed. The last phase will be the development of studio housings for the cameras. The latter will be the only housings to offer compatibility with cinema lenses (due to demand for this feature for motion picture directors), as most are not actually compatible with 8K sensors.

The RED Weapon does not currently have a small monitor option that is compatible with using within a housing. Their DSMC2 interface physically connects onto the camera body. There are accessory wires being developed, but these are not available yet. Ryan mentioned that if and when these come available, Nauticam may design an accessory back to accommodate them.

One are that has been focused on with the new housing is its compatibility with RED and third party battery packs. Among those that can be used are the RED Brick 150 Wh, PAG PL96 (2 can be stacked), Blueshape series 150Wh and BeBo 150 Wh.

RED Weapon provides a redesigned interface known as Sidekick, and this interfaces with Nauticam’s control solution. The camera slides into a tray that is mounted on the top of the housing. This allows the camera to be mounted lower “allowing the operator to get closer to benthic living creatures

Ryan Canon and Edward Lai show the relative depths of RED Weapon and Epic cameras

The camera is actually very deep, so an additional saddle in the conventions bottom position would exacerbate this. The camera bracket mounts with four allen screws, and the key has a handy park position within it. This is the only tool needed to install the camera.

Ryan and Edward are very proud of how smooth their control dials are on the new housing. This has been achieved by using a special spiral bevel gear, which eliminates kickback by meshing three teeth at any one time.

RED Weapon has vastly improved IO access. This includes built in ethernet wifi control. Ryan demonstrated how this could be used to control the camera from his iPhone via an app Foolcontrol.

Nauticam are working on extending this ethernet access to allow a producer to control the camera from the surface.

The Weapon LT fits in a Think Tank bag that can actually pushed under the seat in front on an airplane. Lastly, the new housing has compatibility with all Nauticam’s SLR ports, allowing for shooters to share ports with B roll or still shooters on the project.

We then turned our attention to Nauticam’s housing for the Arri Alexa Mini.

This can be equipped with ARRI “Cforce mini” servo motors, giving the potential of remote control of the camera.

However, this does come at a price, with them renting out at $300 to $400/day or they retail at over $20,000!

Phoebe Lu, Guillaume Nery and Wei Andie Deng

Kurt Amsler plays to a full house on the Water Pixel World stage

Harald Hordosch and David Doubilet

Underwater Photography Global Championship 2015

The judging for the 2015 Underwater Photography Global Championship was held on stage during the show.

After some good natured wrangling among the judges, the Italian team consisting of Filippo Borghi, Domenico Roscigno and David Salvatori was voted as having the best portfolio. Many congratulations to them.


I met with Daniel Keller on his stand.

The new 18X and 24X lights were on it and Daniel has redesigned the heads to make them a little smaller and more streamlined. He has also designed a buoyancy collar that makes the lights nearly neutral in the water.

Daniel is now ready to accept orders for his color correction lenses. These are available in three depth ratings, with each being specifically designed to correct the spectrum that is available at these depths.

They are defined at Shallow (5m or less), Medium (5 to 15m) and Deep (greater than 15m). Daniel cautions that the Deep version will only work with cameras capable of very high ISO performance.

The filters are available in 67, 72, 77 and 82mm sizes and retails at €120 each.

In line with the idea of correcting the spectrum, Daniel has also released filters that attach to his lights. When filming at depth, it is actually unnatural to use white light, since this is not present underwater. The blue filters have the following depth ranges: 5, 10 and 20 meters.

Simon Buxton, Marcus Roth and Serge Abourjeily

And again!


Lilia, Elisa and Egido Isotta (missing was engineer son in law Anrea Comerlati).

Family owned and run company Isotta (which is the family’s name) have been making underwater housings since the 1980. Second generation owner Elisa kindly took some time to show me through the company’s comprehensive range of housings and accessories.

There are several features common to all the camera housings. They all close with a one-handed rotating latch that locks by pushing it in (or down depending on its position). All the housings are made of aluminum and have double O ring seals on all entries and controls. In the case of the rear camera entries, the double O ring is stepped so that there are two sealing surfaces, making for a more foolproof seal. All the housings feature leak detectors and are held securely within the housing by rubberised friction posts (and in the case of the SLRs by a saddle too).

Isotta offers compact housing for the Canon G7X, G16/15, G11/12, S120, Sony RX 100 Mk. IV and Mk II.

Each housing has three port options, a short port that eliminates vignetting, a standard port that allows the use of the camera’s zoom and an adaptor that allows the use of third party dome ports. All the flat ports feature M67 threads for the attachment of accessory lenses.

The compact housings offer full access to all controls, including the front lens ring on the RX100 housings for example. They ship with an external diffuser for use if the user chooses to use the camera’s flash and a plate that can be attached that allows the use of L and standard fiber optic cables for external strobes.

Accessories include a handled adjustable tray and shutter release extensions that allow access to the shutter with the user’s hands on the tray grips, or wearing gloves.

Isotta’s SLR housing range incorporates the same design features and materials as the compacts as well as tw electrical and two fiber optic bulkheads for strobe triggering.

The camera is held by the saddle, rubberised friction posts and by two arms that mate with the camera’s strap attachment points. This makes the camera very stable in the housing.

Access is provided to almost all controls, with rear button AF (or AE/AF lock) being assigned a lever for example. On the D800/D810 the Fn and Pr buttons are not supported.

Isotta provides a wide range of flat and dome ports, with the latter being available in 4.5”, 6” (glass and acrylic) and 9” sizes. All the ports feature double O rings, and the housings have port locks.

The housings are supplied with a standard optical viewfinder, but are compatible with Inon magnified viewfinders if required.

Lastly, in terms of housings, Isotta has a housing for GoPro 3 Black, 4 Black and 4 Silver. Currently these are for use without LCD backpacks as appropriate, but Elisa informed me that there is likely to be aversion that allows the use of the backpaks soon. The housings are rated to 150m and are supplied with a monitor sunshade (useful for the Silver version).

There are a number of accessories available for the GoPro housing including a retro-looking Sports Action Finder a lá Nikonos, a tray, a pistol grip, double flip filter kit and shutter release extensions.

Isotta also produce a wide range of accessories including aluminum buoyancy arms. These are available in lengths from 80 to 300mm and in two diameters, 50mm and 70mm. The actual buoyancies of each arm is marked on them. Along with their length.

Christian Skauge, Ørjan Sandnes and Danny Charlton on the Gulen Dive Resort stand.


Shane Newman was on hand with his super bright range of lights.

He now has an Infra Red head module available that minimises disturbance to the animals being filmed. Typically, these lights reduce the output of the light significantly, but as the Orcalights are so powerful to begin with, this loss is not as noticeable. He has also designed simple buoyancy spacers that can be inserted into battery packs or light heads to reduce their in-water weight.

Shane is investigating the use of wet connectors on the light cords so as to make it possible to use battery packs with heated vests or other accessories simultaneously with the light heads. He was at pains to point out that he offers a very bespoke service and that he is able to respond to unique customer demands by using the modular “toolbox” of lighting parts that he has available.

As an example, he had a battery pack on his stand that has been designed for a client for mounting under their video housing. It offers the ability to shift the battery packs forward and aft to trim the housing and lights in the water.

Page 1: Subal, World Shoot Out, Seacam.
Page 2: Nauticam, Underwater Photography Global Championships, Keldan, Isotta, Orcalight.