Monday, June 4, 2012

Month of May in Review!

The month of May was an exciting month for scuba divers! Fun events, new toys, and with improving weather conditions makes for wonderful diving experiences! The beginning of the month kicked off with back to back events from Chamber Day and Eve to the Scuba Show. The month wrapped up with a Memorial Day party including a park BBQ and dives. I should have blogged these events separately but instead I'm doing it as one big update so this may be a long blog with a few videos! This post has a little something for everyone including a quick chat about the new gear out in the market.


The hyperbaric chamber is a very important tool to every diver. One hopes to never use it but also likes to know that the chamber is there and available. Every year, USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber holds a huge day long fundraiser to earn a significant part of its funding. This year they broke all previous records and raised $134,783 in addition to money for a new compressor for the chamber!

The two part event includes a trip to the chamber with presentations from various rescue services and two dives around Catalina Island. Followed by a dinner at the Aquarium of the Pacific. Plenty of prizes raffled out through out the day! Below is a video of my dive on that day. I managed to catch a glimpse of one of the butterfly fish that accidentally migrated up here during one of the storms from tropic water and seem to have climitized really well.


This is an opportunity to buy gear for cheap and see what other new toys are coming out into the market! It's also a wonderful opportunity to talk with the manufactures of the product and learn about which product is best for you. A lot of companies also carry show discounts, which can add up to quite a savings. Let's not forget also the opportunity to enter into numerous vacation contest and try to win a trip somewhere! Sometimes you may find yourself visiting a country you never even thought of going and having the best time EVER. It is also an opportunity to meet the various groups, organizations, and non-profits out there as well!


There were a couple of new gear introduced at the show and one or two not at the show but worth mentioning.

Intova Sport HD
Intova answers back to GoPro with it's own version of the mini sports camera. I am looking forward to getting my hands on one of these little guys. It's software interface looks closer to a full video camera than Gopro as well as more buttons allowing for quicker navigation. The unit comes with a flat lens already and starts at a considerably lower price point of $199.99. The mounting system follows a more traditional cameral mount as well.

Halcyon Traveler BC System
Halcyon is known for their tech line is also jumping into the travel line with a simple system weighing around 5-6 lbs with most of the features of their normal back plate system. Overall it is a ligher and simpler constructions without all the full bells and whistle. Not bad though and considerably cheaper starting in the high $500s.

Motion Armor
I saw this company at the show and was pretty amazied with their products. Simple housing for both Gopro cameras and iPhones. The housing and handles come in a wide range of bright colors combinations that are customizable. They also have an innovative sealing system to ensure your camera or phone stays dry. They definitely can help take your iPhone go the new distance (or depth).

GoPro Dive Housing
GoPro finally released their own flat lens in a complete housing unit. Priced around $50 and replaces your current housing. Does include a lens cover. My Memorial Day dive was the first time using it with my full camera set up.

Subgear XP-H
This was definitely a very interesting and caught my eye. If you are looking for a compact computer with easy buttons to push and has integrated air feature? Here you go. The price of this product is definitely not bad for the pocket at a price tag around $475!

Oceanic B.U.D.
Speaking of computers... some divers feel more comfortable with redundant system. Not a bad price for a simple dive computer to use as a back up in case if your primary computer fails or someone was not set correctly (which has happened to me at least once). Price starts around $330.


With the beginning of the year being so rough, I was starting to wonder was I dreaming about the nice diving conditions here? It finally has come back! Water is back in the calm around 64 degrees F. It's no tropic diving but it is very comfortable and very pleasant to be in... especially when you come back out and realize it is in the high 80s to 90s. Back in we go to cool off! Here's a quick video of a recent dive off Shaws Cove. The fish here have gotten so much bigger! MPA appears to be working out here!


Hot dogs! Burgers! and food galore! It seems to be how many Americans commemorate our fallen soldiers on Memorial Day. What do a group of divers do? Get together, grill up some food and go diving! While the food was going, we all ran into the ocean for a quick dive. This is the first time I'm using my full camera set up with the new GoPro dive housing, a tray, arm, and Sola light. It took a little time to tweak it and get the lightning to work out. I will probably have to invest in one more lightning unit in the future. But for traveling this will do. In a future article, I will blog about my GoPro travel setup.

Written by: Wayne Lu, Jun 4, 2012


1 comment:

  1. I'll immediately snatch your rss as I can not find your e-mail subscription link or newsletter service. Do you've any? Kindly allow me know so that I could subscribe. Thanks. hotmail sign in