It is obvious that scuba divers love to use underwater cameras.
That’s very normal because there are plenty of different living creatures as well as good looking coral reefs, rocky structures and such (read: Why Scuba?).
Go Pro® is a good choice for underwater photographers and videographers regardless of the experience.
It is clear that Go Pro® is a very helpful photo and video assistant for those who like to get the snapshots of what they see underwater.
However, we want to be hands-free as much as possible. Because we are already using our hand to inflate/deflate our BC, hold an underwater torch and etc. That’s why I was using my Go Pro Hero 3 Black Edition with a head strap.
Couple of weeks ago, I was ordering a red filter for my Go Pro Hero 3 from Amazon.com. I have seen a product on the ‘Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought‘ section.
It is called ‘Octomask.’
The idea is simple.
“You are mounting your Go Pro on your scuba diving mask.”
It is a typical scuba diving mask. The only difference is that the producers has placed a ‘sledge‘ at the top of the mask.
Octomask is a mask designed for Go Pro®.
You can attach any model of Go Pro® on it.
Purpose of the Octomask is to make you hands-free. The same purpose with the Go Pro head strap.
How Popular is Octomask?
I can tell you that it is a cool product and can definitely help you in your dives. But there are also some points that would have been better/can be improved by the manufacturer.
My pros and cons section will give you an idea about how and where to use an Octomask.
- Hands-free video/photo footage
- A good alternative to Go Pro® head strap. There are a lot of cases that people have lost their Go Pro® with a head strap. You don’t have to ‘check’ your Go Pro® on your head
- Designed for all models of Go Pro®
- Mask strap is thin. You better replace it with another strap if possible.
- Mask has a very small size
- Need a Hex tool (driver) to remove/tighten the screw (to attach the Go Pro® to the Octomask). However, you can also use the thumb-screw that you already had (that comes with Go Pro®).
- Not effective in snorkeling. Part of the camera usually stays out of the water.
- It is risky to buy a scuba diving mask on-line. As you know, I always advise divers to check a dive mask in a dive shop, then order it from elsewhere if it is going to be cheaper. But you cannot leak-test an Octomask (read: 5 Steps to Choose a Leak-Proof Mask) unless one of your friends already have it.
Because it is generally not sold in dive shops.
There is a risk that the Octomask may not fit you.
On Octomask.com, manufacturer offers the potential buyers a helpful solution:
We realize that some may be weary of buy a mask online since they are unable to try it on in the store. We are so confident that the OCTOMASK will fit you great that we offer a 30 day no questions asked return policy. If for any reason the mask does not live up to your expectations, you can just send it back for a full refund on the mask and non-expidited shipping cost.
What Does Seaman Say?
An invention like Octomask was a need.
I liked the idea of integrating a Go Pro® to a scuba diving mask and it works well in dives.
I was never that relaxed while using a head strap. I was almost loosing my Go Pro Hero 3® in one of my dives, because head strap can slip out of my head very easily (maybe that’s because I am a bald guy, lol).
However, the Octomask is a little bit small and discomforts me from the point that my nose meets my forehead. I therefore have to equalize my Octomask more than usual.
Let’s be honest. Taking photos/videos underwater is an extra, but mask is a need. Combining them may not suit everyone. A mask should be a mask.
Aren’t I using Octomask?
But always provide my primary mask in my BC pocket.
If I am not 100% sure that I’m going to use my Go Pro® in a single dive, I carry my Go Pro® with a wrist string and use my primary dive mask.
But if I am sure that I am going to take some shots (like diving in a wreck), I use Octomask, again by providing my primary mask in my BC pocket.
Last but not least, I have a small tip for ones who own/will buy an Octomask:
Don’t angle your Go Pro® down, or it will record the ocean floor. It should always face forward.