This year we were only able to pay a super quick visit to the great DEMA show, this time in Orlando, Florida. Being "trade only" this yearly appointment is the largest showcase of everything new - and sometimes crazy - in the world of diving.
So here is our little, unbiased guide to the new and slightly bonkers products that caught our eyes!
10Bar Laser Snoot Set
Another useful toy for serious underwater photographer. This snoot has a laser pointer so you can be sure it is correctly pointed at the target. Apparently critters don't take much notice (unlike my cats).
Aqua Lung Rogue BCD
The second generation of the Outlaw modular BCD, now even more adjustable.
I want to believe this product is really an advancement but I'm not convinced. The plastic attachments just don't make me feel confident about its sturdiness and the modularity just points out at more things that can break or get lost.
On the flip side it is very small for travelling when dismantled and of course it allows for great customisation. I'm not sure how easy it will be for divers to buy this online without the help of a dealer and for dealers to sell it without having to stock a huge amount of components but well done Aqua Lung for trying to do something new.
These Italian guys have pulled off a coup. While other companies are hanging off the shirt-tails of every mobile phone company for changes in size, Carbonarm just went ahead and made a case that fits all smartphones. Bluetooth connectivity means you don’t need any complicated button duplicators. I am sure all the other camera housing manufacturers must be keeping an eye on this.
CYANO Dive Computer
Now this is really the first dive computer that looks like a smart watch. It's a sleek looking device that could easily be mistaken for an Apple product. The watch mode has a good looking analogue style display. Whilst it is still not available on the market - it's currently on Kickstarter for 2 more weeks - I hope this watch will prove that it pays off to invest in some good product design. Good luck Cyano!
These guys make serious dry bags but on their latest ‘Basin’ models they have added a suction cup feature to attached to SUP’s. Very cool.
I'm not sure why anyone would need to customise fins in this way but the applied patterns are attractive.
Hoverstar Aquajet Dive and Aquajet Rescue
A really cool looking UW scooter. I love the beach rescue model.
This Austrian product is part of a bunch of underwater scooters that are emerging to help photographers lung their ever growing camera rigs around.
Always at the forefront with great new products. The Zoom mask with pop off lenses for perception makes a lot of sense and the ski goggle style head strap makes it look nifty and comfortable. No zip wetsuits, say no more! Solar charged batteries in a dive computer is also a no brainer. What's not to love.
With a super sexy speedometer display and being one of the fastest scooters off the block, we are moving into really cool James Bond territory!
Snorkelator, Easy Dive
I am not a fan of products that mix scuba & snorkelling. It's just too dangerous and use should not be attempted without proper training and a dive computer that gives correct information about depth and dive time. These guys seem to be sending out the right message, saying it's aimed at reef diving, boat maintenance, dive training and other shallow activities but I'm not convinced it could fall into the wrong hands. The snorkel that fits on the regulator mouthpiece looks nifty but it calls for a regulator necklace. Not everybody's cup of tea.
SWES Dive Light
We met these guys at DEMA 2016 and we were seriously impressed. Charging your iPhone from seawater or using underwater lights with no batteries in seawater is a serious breakthrough. They might just need a bit of help with design as this product needs a better look to truly stand out. A really beautiful twist to the tech is that these lights remove a little bit of acidity from the ocean. This is real innovation.
The real "piece de resistance". I absolutely love this HUD (Head Up Display) to show your dive computer through your mask. The future is here, bring it on!
And lastly, the slightly crazy...
Voice in the Sea, UW communication device
Can someone explain to me how you can safely remove your regulator, talk underwater through this device in one single breath and leave enough air in your lungs to put your regulator back on? They say it should not be used in a stressful situation but we all know that talking requires energy and can be emotionally engaging, requiring the person to breath more (it's a human thing!). If the message to be conveyed is simple, for example when an instructor is teaching, then pre-writing it on a slate is considerably safer. If the message is complex and maybe the diver is distressed then I'm not sure how this would work...I'm not convinced!
Enough said, let's go diving!
Thanks for reading guys,