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I'm looking for ideas on how to hold my Hero2 for an upcoming dive. I have a headstrap, though I'm thinking of not using it and instead finding some way to just hold it during a dive to have better control of what I'm shooting video and pics of. I have thought of all kinds of ideas like using the tripod adapter and one of these things (I already own one) Joby Gorillapod at REI.com to make it easier/possibly to hold.
1. besides buying a rig or building one myself, what would you recommend?
2. Any ideas for strapping the GoPro to me or my BC so when I'm not using it I don't lose it?
I just posted photos of a hand held mount I made for my GoPro. Until then I was using a lanyard and hand holding it. I got the Surf Edition and one of the mounts had a little extension below the mount. My buddy drilled a hole in it and I threaded the lanyard through that. You can clip your camera to your BC with any kind of clip or keep the lanyard around your wrist.
Take a look at my post in the Underwater Photography section and you can PM me if you have any questions.
If you are only planning on shooting the exciting parts hold it in your hand. Will save you a lot of editing later too.
First couple dives I did with mine where the primary goal was skills I had it strapped off to the font of my BC strap. Worked OK but left a lot to be desired.
On our HI dive trip I wanted better video. I kept it in the head mount strap with a carabiner on it. I would keep it clipped off to my left chest D-ring. When I wanted to use it I held it in front of me and pointed at the subject matter. For most shooting I had enough slack to leave it attached, other times I had to unhook it.
The tripod you have is great for setting it and waiting for the fish to come to it. I suggest weighting it down though. Depending on what mounts you have with your GoPro, the helmet mount works great for a mock goodman handle.
The gorrila pods aren't very strong and wont help you much with stability beyond just carrying it in hand, I have one of those and using it on land with a light breeze will bend it or knock it over so it will be fairly useless underwater to setup shots. The heavier duty versions for heavier cams may be more useful underwater if they are similar to the locline arms used for underwater lights.
Camera in hand I think is not ideal, very hard to keep still for any living person due to the light small camera
A basic monopod works pretty well and is much better then just holding the camera, I have used my own DIY before but know use one of the handles from my SRP tray which works as good as any other. I can even mount a light to this but I havent tried that underwater yet.
The best method is a tray for best stability and if you intend to use lights, there are plenty around but this one from Snake River Prototyping works great. Very versatile with so many different ways of mounting and heres just a few Ive use or tried with and without lights, it also doubles as a mini tripod.
Here is a little experimental mount I have put together
Head mounting make sure you use a hood to cover the headband or make yourself a chin strap something like this.
Head strap works pretty well for dives you just want to enjoy and not worry about the camera, better results with a tray setup but I tend to spend most of the dive looking at the tiny LCD rather then whats infront of me lol.
Heres a couple of older HD1 videos I shot head mounted the shark one is still one of my favourites, and for the scallop video theres no other way as you need your hands free.
These were both shot with the EOM housing no filters on a HD1 at 720P60 which I find is the best setting for head mounting as the higher frame rate reduces motion blur caused by head movements and slower shutter speeds and it has the 170fov which helps get more in the frame so you are more likely to shoot what your looking at. HD2 has a much sharper 720P image too so it looks much better and I want to do some more head mounted videos as I haven't done many with the HD2 and filters yet.
I am currently in Cayman using the Snake River tray. It is very very cool. Attaches easily to BC with a bungee lanyard and has improved my videos 1000 fold. Plus the tray can be used as a tripod also. Ive set it next to a coral head and taken some pretty cool vids. I bought from AquaProHD, who is a member on here.