Crystal Clear Underwater Images Using New Housing for the Go Pro HD Hero
Ok, I admit it, I am a huge fan of the Go Pro cameras and this new Go Pro Flat Port Housing makes all the difference!
Fig.1 Go Pro Hero HD 2 With Original Housing
Maybe this comes from my crazy days of extreme sports (motocross, skydiving, skiing etc) when there was nothing to record your adventures with other than strapping an SLR or video camera (or both) to your head and jumping out of a plane…yes, that’s what you used to do back in the day (and they still do, that is a fairly recent Canon DSLR and see the shutter release in his mouth?)!
Picture courtesy of CarolinaDoug over at Flickr
Note: Whilst we are on the subject, check out this article where a Canon EOS Rebel XT survived a 3000 foot fall after a skydivers’ helmet comes off.
Now, with the tiny Go Pro cameras, they can be attached just about anywhere for some amazing POV (point of view) footage and stills (without breaking your neck ; )
This is great for all sports “above” water such as the afore-mentioned sports from my heyday as well as just about anything else you can think of, but take it underwater? No chance!
The housing just can’t cope with the diffraction and distortion with its supplied housing so you get really poor, blurry images…what a shame! This camera would be perfect for snorkelers, scuba divers, surfers, shark watchers (yes, I have seen Go Pros attached to the dorsal fin of a Tiger Shark) and so on. But…
I recently came across a company selling modified housings that included a flat port front cover for the lens and after carefully reviewing the product and watching various videos, I bought one from a company in the States (details below).
Fig. 2 and 3 – Go Pro HD Hero 2 With Flat Port Housing
When it arrived, the first thing I did was to fill it with tissue paper, close it up and submerge it for a while to check its sealing…all was well. Next, I put my Go Pro HD Hero 2 in there and made some basic tests and compared it to previous footage I had taken a few months ago.
Wow, what a difference!
You can see the difference in a video below but please be aware that the camera in the original housing is the Go Pro HD Hero 1 and the camera in the flat port housing is the Go Pro HD Hero 2.
Now both cameras are very sharp and film well at 1080p above water but take my work for it when I say that even the Go Pro HD Hero 2 looked very poor underwater with the supplied housing.
For this video, I simply held both cameras in my hand and shoved them in our (rather unkempt) pond and then into the kid’s bath using their toys as models (and a conditioner bottle for the lettering detail).
Best watched at 720p on a large player and I hope you see the difference. The footage when seen at full resolution on my screen at home is amazing and I would heartily recommend getting one of these housings for your Go Pro HD Hero 1 or 2 as it makes a world of difference.
Buy exclusively from Eye of Mine (I bought the professional version…apparently they take extra special care with those!?!?!?). I don’t get paid for promoting them but please tell them where you heard about this housing…I may get some goodies to review from them one day ; )
Saying that, I have just bought their Extension Pole which you can read about below (plus video):
Also try their new site at eyeofmineactioncameras.com
Note: Since writing this article, Go Pro themselves have now released a great looking flat port housing for the HD Hero cameras. Check out the new stylish design over at the Official GoPro® Store at Amazon.
…and please share this with your friends…