Divers and underwater photographers are being inundated with a dizzying array of new and different lights. Some of these have similar features like a single button for both mode and power, single lith-ion batteries instead of more reliable battery packs and chargers. Most less expensive LED arrays that have hotspots. In other words, buying lights strictly on the basis of lumens for dollars doesn’t always yield the best results.
When you're diving at 80’ and trying to remember how many pushes it takes to turn a light up, or if it’s double-press, or single-press-and-hold to switch it to red mode, it can be frustrating and time-consuming. A flooded light, or batteries and chargers that go bad can kill the light altogether.
There are some very high-end lights on the market; Light & Motion's Sola 8000, Keldan, Fisheye Fix and a few others. These have separate chargers, good controls and excellent reliability. But they tend to be larger and expensive.
Doug Taleski with many years of industry experience and founder of Kraken Sports, has seen them all. And decided to create his own line of high-quality Hydra Lights that are fully-featured and easy-to-use.
The new Hydra series of lights come in 2000, 2800, and 5000 lumen powers. All lights have two buttons for ease of use. Simply press both buttons down to unlock the light, then press the left button to change from red or flood, and on the 2800 and 5000 you can change to spot and UV too. While in these modes, you press the right button to ramp the light power up or down.
The Hydras have dual o-rings and are aluminum with a water resistant light head for flood protection. If you flood them, just rinse them out and put in a new battery!
The 2800 and 5000 and are remote control ready. The remote utilizes a fiber optic cord to conveniently connect with the lights when they are extended out on arms, and it can control the mode or turn them up or down independently, or even put them to sleep. It comes with a universal mount for most handles to place it right at your thumb.
All of the lights utilize multi-cell battery packs, with good quality, fast chargers. Recharge time is about 2.5 hours from completely drained.
The lights all have a very smooth, wide output from their COB led for video. The lights all come in a fitted bag, complete with spare o-rings.
The 2000 is meant as more of a focus light with red and flood white modes only. It comes with a YS mount. The 2800 and 5000 lights come with the additional spot white and UV modes. UV is fun to use with filters to see corals and animals with fluorescence at night. They also come with a ball mount, that’s an option on the 2000.
They will soon have out their new Solar Flare 10000 lumen light with a dome port to keep the light wider underwater. We look forward to using it’s massive output!
We think that the Kraken Hydra lighting products are a great, well thought-out answer to underwater video and photography lighting.