Good communications are essential for any film shoot, and even more so when shooting underwater. Cactus Camera has a wide range of wireless underwater communication tools, to permit clear and reliable conversations between the director and cameraman, as well as the rest of the crew and cast.
All our wireless equipment has been supplied by Ocean Technology Systems in the USA, a world leader in military and commercial diving communications. The transmitted signal is ultrasonic audio, which can easily travel through water, and has a range from 100m to 500m, depending on conditions. All the units work on the same frequency, so all of the crew may be kept in the loop, and understand what is going on, above and below the surface.
A - Aga mask & Buddy Phone: The AGA mask from Interspiro, is a world standard for commercial divers, with an external breathing regulator, which keeps the diver's mouth unobstructed, to allow unhindered talking. The OTS Buddy Phone system consists of a waterproof microphone which attaches inside the mask, and is connected to an earpiece which is attached to the AGA head strap next to the diver's ear.
B- SP 100 Surface Buddy Phone: This unit we reserve for the director or 1st AD, who can have direct, 2 way communication with the underwater camera operator and the rest of the underwater crew. The Surface Buddy Phone works with a simple press-to-talk microphone and a cabled transmitter is placed just inside the water. Whilst sitting in front of the video assist monitor, the director can have total control of the underwater action.
C - RX100 - Receive only Buddy Phone: This earpiece is designed to fit on a regular diving mask, and offers a "listen only" environment, which is ideal for secondary crew who need to know what is going on around them, but don't actually need to speak, or they don't have experience with Aga Masks. It is also possible for a crew member to carry one to hold against an actor's ear, so directions can be passed on, but without having the Buddy Phone in shot.
D - AquaCom 2010 Surface Pack: This is an alternative surface based communications tool, which can be worn on a belt, so is ideal for the 1st Assistant director or stunt coordinator etc who may need to move around during the shoot. It offers 2 way communication in a portable pack, which includes headphones with a built in push-to-talk microphone, and a cabled transmitter which is placed just inside the water.