Ice Diving in Urisee, Reutte, Austria

After some beautiful ice diving, the GoPro HD Hero 3 Black Edition jury's in ... and the verdict is very positive. I'm positively impressed by the sensor performance of the Hero3 Black Edition even in difficult lighting situations. Such as diving under a thick layer of snow that cuts off much light. So read on and enjoy watching ice diving!

Ice diving in Urisee (view on YouTube)

My two H3BEs worked quite well even in temperatures of -18°C. Without any prior warm up, they immediately worked well above water. And under water at +4°C I also had no problems at all. No sensor problems, no battery problems.

I shot footage partly in parallel, using both 1520p/25fps/wide FOV as well as 1080p/50fps/medium FOV. Protune was activated, while I switched off the totally broken white balancing. Thanks to the really low color noise of the new sensor (well, it was deep frozen after all) I could immediately edit and cut the raw footage. That never worked for me with the Hero 2 before. Despite its improved sensor (compared to the Hero 1), the totally borked white balancing made Protune useless to me in my case.

That's now history. Shooting in 1520p is awesome: this resolution of 2700x1520 leaves useful room for post processing. For instance, I can simply downscale to 1080p. Or alternatively, I can choose interesting details in original resolution without having to zoom in beyond raw resolution. Now, simple manual deshaking becomes possible to some extend. Or a digital zoom within the range of raw resolution. I like this new video mode of the H3BE. For diving, it is really fine.

Compensating the Protune compression of the RGB channel graduation curves is easy and quick to do. In Kdenlive, I'm using a user-defined group with three curves, one curve for each individual channel R, G, and B. This way, I can then optimize channels individually, if required. This depends on the particular underwater lighting conditions.

In the end, this was a fine weekend: combining ice diving with filming with the new GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition.