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Monty Halls - Four expeditions in
Mystery of the vanishing Dutchman
Myth-busting down under
From October DIVER
23 October 2014The latest model of drysuit from BARE is this trilaminate offering featuring a telescoping torso, anatomically shaped arms and legs with hard-soled neoprene boots, heavy-duty latex wrist- and neck-seals and a 3mm neoprene neck-cover. The suit is made from a Cordura-covered outer shell with rip-stop protection at the wear-points.
20 October 2014Suunto has just released a new flagship dive computer, the Eon Steel. It is constructed using a stainless-steel face with a 50% composite glass-fibre resin base, and is depth-rated to 150m. The 65 x 47mm TFT colour display is optically bonded to a Xensation glass Brightsee screen that’s claimed to give a higher contrast and wide angle of view. more...
13 October 2014UK-based Beaver Sports has released its latest range of wetsuits. The OceanFlex system comprises a one-piece, front-zip, semi-dry suit using superstretch and Guardflex neoprene.
9 October 2014German watchmaker Archimede has launched its latest SportTaucher Bronze Divers range of watches. The timepieces feature Swiss-made automatic movements set in 41.5mm brushed-finish bronze cases with screw-down backs and crowns, anti-reflective sapphire crystal faces and unidirectional bronze bezels.
6 October 2014UK camera retailer Calumet has a range of waterproof hard cases suitable for underwater shooters. The range includes the WT1905, which is sized at 55 x 35 x 25cm and fits within most airline carry-on baggage allowances.
2 October 2014Portland-based O’Three has marked its 25th anniversary with the launch of a new kit-bag, with the design reportedly based on feedback from divers. It features an integrated changing mat, corrosion-resistant zips and a capacious main pocket with a full opening and two collapsible accessory pockets. more...
29 September 2014Subgear has added a range of rash-guards to its expanding inventory. Made from “technically advanced” materials, they are said to have been tested to the new European EU EV-standard 801. Said to provide UV sun protection while snorkelling or swimming, the rash-guards can also be used under wetsuits to provide additional insulation.
25 September 2014Scubapro has released its new system for sidemount diving. The X-Tek is a modular design with individual components featuring 12- or 20-litre capacity wings with Scubapro’s newly designed power inflator.
22 September 2014British drysuit manufacturer Hammond Drysuits has added HDS Kevlar Gloves to its protective-equipment range. They feature heavy-duty Kevlar protection across the palm and fingers, together with a high gauntlet and Velcro wrist-adjuster. more...
18 September 2014Oceanic has a new strap for its Ion series of masks. The silicon strap section with adjustment buckle (which replaces the Oceanic mask's generic version) is attached to a neoprene pad, screen-printed with the manufacturer's "Tribal" hammerhead shark livery. more...
11 September 2014Sea Dragon is a camera-mount and lighting system that includes a powerful LED photo/video dive-light and a compact flash. There are two models, one 2000 and the other 1200 lumens. more...
8 September 2014The A300 CS organic light-emitting diode wrist-mounted dive computer has a twin algorithm and a high-contrast, bright colour display and Bluetooth connectivity. more...
1 September 2014Johnsons Outdoor subsidiary Subgear has added a range of luggage to its portfolio, and this includes the XP Pack Duo, a wheeled bag with an extendable handle, a large capacity (140 litres) and a weight of 4.3kg, costing £139. more...
1 September 2014Intended for female divers with its stylish wave design and shaped fit, this 3mm wetsuit is made from stretchy neoprene and has a diagonal back zip and zipped wrist and ankles. more...
28 August 2014The latest BC from TUSA is a heavy-duty, wrap-around jacket using its Advanced Weight Loading System and Ultimate Stabilising Harness which, the maker claims, ensures security and stability. more...
Appeared in DIVER October 2014Frankly it hurt a bit when NIGEL WADE’s practical research into maximising SMB visibility a few years ago seemed to fall on deaf ears, but now a new product has made him feel a whole lot better more...
Appeared in DIVER October 2014There are more makes, styles and genres of BC on the market than you could believe. Whether you’re looking for an initial purchase or a replacement, the choice can be bewildering.
Some are lightweight, built from substandard materials, and probably wouldn’t see out a busy season of diving. Others are built like brick out-houses and will seemingly last forever.
There are conventional jacket designs, and wings with lots of permutations from horseshoes to doughnuts, some with bungee compression straps, some without. more...
Appeared in DIVER October 2014I HAD NEVER REALLY CONSIDERED CONDUCTING A TEST OF HOODS. Mine have always been there, either in the pocket of my drysuit or tucked away in the bottom of my dive-bag – I’ve just pulled them on and gone diving without giving them a second thought.
That was, until I left my lightweight version on a liveaboard in Papua New Guinea and then recently lost my very old but much-loved 5mm model overboard during a scallop hunt in the English Channel.
I couldn’t face the rest of the dive season getting ice-cream headaches, so I asked those bad boys at O’Three in Portland to send me replacements, only to find that its latest hoods are actually very hi-tec, and completely different from my “run-of-the-mill” originals.
Appeared in DIVER October 2014I LOVE TECHNOLOGY – I know, I’m a geek!
I have so many electronic devices that run on rechargeable batteries and I’m not on my own – everyone in the UK over the age of eight and under 80 seems to own a mobile phone, iPod, iPad, GoPro, compact camera, Kindle – the list is endless (as is the list of geeks among us).
I wake in a cold sweat dreaming that my precious, much-needed “Carlos Fandangle” solid-state, digital hand-held hoojamaflip has flat batteries, rendering it as useless as my buttoned socks.
What I need in order to sleep easy is a mobile charging-pack that breathes life back into those dead microchips no matter where I am. Dorset-based Mobile Solar more...
Appeared in DIVER September 2014Gear giant Scubapro has mixed and matched its regulator products for as long as I can remember. The first stage, being the workhorse of any set, generally has the most influence on performance, so I was excited when Scubapro sent me its latest model, the MK21, along with its well-established G260 second stage.
Keen to see how this combination would perform, I dragged it across the Atlantic for a field test. more...
Appeared in DIVER September 2014I’VE OWNED AND EVENTUALLY DESTROYED numerous pairs of dive-boots over the years. Some were very comfortable, some made me hobble, some were warm and some made my toes turn blue.
Appeared in DIVER May 2014How many Dive Show visitors have taken advice from SAEED RASHID on underwater photography and post-production techniques over the years? Saeed co-ordinates the PhotoZone presentations at the Shows, and at other times can be found teaching print design at Bournemouth University. He learned to dive while on holiday
in Australia and started taking underwater pictures in 1998. Saeed dives in the UK with Bournemouth & Poole Diving Club, and also runs popular underwater photography workshops in the Red Sea and Maldives with blueotwo. more...
Appeared in DIVER December 2013It’s the season for giving, but how do you come up with a gift for the underwater photographer who has everything? If you’re Dutch, the answer is obvious – clogfins! PETER DE MAAGT was the considerate giver. Main picture by JARRET BROWN more...
Appeared in DIVER July 2013Scots man of action ANDY TORBET started diving at 12. He is a cave-, mixed-gas and rebreather diver and freediver and a military and commercial diver and supervisor. He gained a degree in zoology before spending 10 years in the Forces as a paratrooper, diver and bomb disposal officer, serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo, Northern Ireland and the Falklands. Andy is also a mountaineering
instructor, caver, sea-kayaker and extreme sportsman. Recent TV projects included Operation Iceberg and Coast and he is currently filming with Monty Halls more...
Appeared in DIVER May 2013It’s all about saving weight on diving equipment for internationally renowned underwater photographer ALEX MUSTARD – because that means he can take more camera gear on his travels. And he travels a lot. Trained as a marine biologist, he worked in that field but became a full-time professional underwater photographer and author nine years ago. He has won many awards, including multiple wins in the two most prestigious competitions for underwater photographers: the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year and France’s World Festival of Underwater Photography. His first photo book The Art Of Diving, a collaboration with Nick Hanna, was followed by Reefs Revealed in 2007 and he is of course a regular contributor to DIVER with his popular Be The Champ! series
more... Described by Sir David Attenborough as “the toughest in the business”, wildlife cameraman DOUG ALLAN was born in 1951 in Dunfermline, and started diving in 1968 before studying marine biology at Stirling. He worked as a pearl diver, diving instructor, commercial diver and biologist in the Red Sea, then made his first trip to Antarctica in 1976 as diving officer on a British research station. He spent five winters and eight summers down south before in 1986 becoming a full-time freelance photographer and documentary film-maker, specialising in polar wildlife. Doug has been involved with more than 60 films and TV series and has made more than 50 trips to the poles for series such as Planet Earth, The Blue Planet and Frozen Planet. Awards include four Emmys and five BAFTAs, and he has twice won the underwater category in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year. He has three Honorary Doctorates in recognition of his work, as well as the Polar Medal and bar. more... Michael Aw is one of the world’s most influential wildlife photographers – and over 27 years his images have earned him more than 60 awards.
He has won five Palme D’Ors at the World Festival of Underwater Pictures, and last year was a judge for the prestigious BBC Natural History Museum Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, in which he has himself won three awards. He has produced many books and his conservation work, particularly campaigning against shark-finning, has been widely recognised. Recently he has been project director of the Elysium Epic imagery expedition, in which 57 of the world’s leading image-makers and scientists retraced Shackleton’s Trans-Antarctic Expedition to document the flora and fauna of the region. Michael is based in Australia. more...
Appeared in DIVER June 2014Fourteen pairs of fins are in the spotlight, and what NIGEL WADE wants to find out is how much pushing power you get for your not-inconsiderable spend.
Stand by for a shock conclusion!
Appeared in DIVER January 2014Have you opted for any old dive-boots in the past? NIGEL WADE’s test of 17 pairs of the latest, ranging from £16 to £90, shows how you can add a spring to your step more...
Appeared in DIVER May 2013Take 12 of the latest regulators to the Red Sea to compare and contrast their performance – who knows, it might just provide a short-cut when you're next ready to buy. NIGEL WADE reports, assisted by co-tester CATH BATES more... Dive-computers you can wear all day, every day, are now a common badge of a diver, but choosing one is based on far more than wrist appeal. JOHN BANTIN assesses the market more... If you need a new mask, it’s often easiest to pick up whatever your local dive shop has on the rack. It might be even better to know exactly what you want – JOHN BANTIN assesses the current crop of divers’ eyewear.
more... Comparing 11 ‘feature-rich’ jackets was the assignment for NIGEL WADE, but we asked him to compare them with each other, not with his own well-worn favourite! more...