Scuba Tech Inc.

Full Service Video Productions

operated by Don Landis, a licensed broadcast engineer


Founded in 1985 in Jacksonville, Florida, Scuba Tech was incorporated to serve as the creation facility for producing Video Cave Maps™; Today, Scuba Tech Inc. has grown into a full broadcast quality post production editing suite with 3D animation, computer graphics illustration, and multiformat video editing in a home based business environment. Scuba Tech also has underwater video production with high tech underwater scooter assisted cameras with high power lighting and a broadcast betacam SP surface camera with full EFP production capability.


Scuba Tech uses 3D Studio as the foundation software on 4 fast PC's with 32 megs of RAM each networked for rapid rendering. 3D Studio is augmented with a large host of "plug-ins" which expand its capability for special effects within animation. Rotoscoping, raytracing, and particle systems are just some of the many enhancements we offer. Elastic Reality is a product we use to create morphs and warps for special effects in our video. All this is output using a PAR digital disk recorder at 752X480 resolution via a component betacam signal path to our edit suite. We can also single frame the animation at 640X480 resolution using alpha channel technology to create great flying animation supered over live video.

Multiformat Video Post Suite

Our post suite uses Betacam SP as the primary edit format. We use two betacam SP player decks A/B rolled to a single UVW-1800 edit recorder using component signal path (Y, R-Y, B-Y). Component betacam SP recording offers superb video reproduction in the edit suite due to its ability to maintain color integrety, resolution, and signal to noise specifications through many generations of video layers. Betacam SP accomplishes this feat by using separate video tracks for each of its video components, luma and two color difference signals. This is unlike other video formats like VHS and SVHS where the video is combined to one track with color information hetrodyned to the same track using a carrier frequency. In the case of SVHS video suffers noticeable losses during the editing process. All video color hetrodyne recording processes, 3/4 Umatic SP, SVHS, Hi8, and VHS all suffer these losses. Betacam SP does not. This is why we choose to use betacam SP for our primary format.

In addition to the two betacam feeder decks we can also offer EVO-9800 Hi8 feeder using Y/C signal transfer. While not as good as Y, R-Y, B-Y, Y/C is a simpler component signal path used for SVHS and Hi8. It is sometimes called the S-video signal. It is much better than composite video for editing but still inferior to betacam signals using true component technology. We also have an SVHS feeder deck, and a 3/4 Umatic feeder deck which also doubles as a secondary edit recorder for those wishing to edit to a 3/4 Umatic format master. Due to the older video format technology, 3/4 Umatic requires the signal path to be composite. It is a good solid format for editing, but with today's video quality standard it is used only for low budget industrial video, and, as a feeder in some older cable TV systems. Hi8 is best suited for applications requiring long play times, good quality, and compactness of equipment. We choose this format for our underwater acquisition for these reasons. SVHS is a great format for producing low budget high quality video productions where the video does not have to meet broadcast specifications. It is best suited for doing weddings, legal depositions, and special events.

Our editor is a FAST Video Machine running in Hybrid format. The Fast Hybrid format makes the best of both worlds of edit control technology. The editor uses time code editing but the interface is a graphical time-line display on a windows based PC platform. We can switch to an Edit Decision List format for those who feel more comfortable with number crunching but once learned, the time line approach is much faster and results in far less edit operator fatigue. The switcher uses 32 bit frame buffer technology and two DVEs for all sorts of 2D special effects. The 32 bit frame buffers also sport a new alpha wipe effects capability that allows us to create custom wipes using gray scale graphics. Our Character Generator is software based and accesses the frame buffers direct. It is Inscriber and has full shadow,edging, graphics with shaded transparency plus scrolls and crawl moves. We also have Pro Video 24, a new product specializing in producing digital composites of images scanned or field grabbed from quality video. It's text capabilities include perspective/warp on a Z-axis and rotation.

Audio is handled also through our Fast VM editor using it's 8x2 channel.mixer. We also have a Tascam multitrack cassette recorder, graphic equalizer/reverb, two CD players and a host of sound effects CD's plus a Licensed Music Library approaching 100 CD's with full cuts and broadcast takes. We also have a Sony DAT recorder. A variety of studio and field acquisition microphones.

We use a proprietary design Non Linear Editing system for doing very special projects involving intricate digital video compositing, slow motion, time lapsed video, ping pong effects, page peels, reverse action, and much more. This is not a full production NLE system such as an Avid or Turbo Cube, rather it is specially designed to augment our linear edit suite with digitally created special effects.

In addition, we have installed Fast Video Machine DPR, a full Non Linear Editor that works in combination with the Fast VM Linear A/B roll tape to tape controller. This remarkable editing system, the only one of it's kind in the industry, allows full deck control while simultaneously blending in digital Non Linear video and audio with full betacam component quality. Our disk storage is capable of up to 90 minutes of video and will process full 3D DVEs using software like Boris Effects, Final Effects, and Hollywood Effects. All this means is that our system is capable of editing long format video projects using a combination of deck and digital video for real time on-line edit session.


VHS distribution is the most popular form of distribution asside from broadcasting. We have 10 VHS duplicators, 4 of which are SVHS capable to meet all your VHS duplication needs on low volume runs (below 1000 units per order). The duplication center has it's own dedicated TBC (time base corrector) to insure perfect sync and high video quality. We can laser print 4 color labels using spot color laser toners as well as black and white. We also have ink-jet printing for producing full photographic quality labels in full color where the cost of short runs makes commercial printing cost prohibitive. Final packaging can be boxed and shrink wrapped for that true professionally manufactured look.

Video Field Production

We shoot with a DXC-637 betacam SP camera with canon 17x lens with Fujinon 0.7X wide angle adapter plus a doubler kit for 34 power telephoto. A tripod /fluid head and battery belt. The camera is equipped with two wireless microphones, one handheld and one lavalier. Also, there is a camera mounted shotgun microphone. Additionally we support field audio with DAT backup and an assortment of audio accessories. We have a color camera LCD monitor and a JVC TM900SU 9 inch director's monitor. Our light package consists of a battery operated twin head camera mounted soft spot for interviews and two 1000 watt quartz lights on floor stands. One is equipped with barndoors and assorted gels. The other has a large 2X2 softbox. Additional we have two 500 watt quartz lights for fill.


Our underwater camera is a TR-700 Hi8 in a custom designed housing capable to 200 feet of water pressure. It has battery power for a full 2 hour tape run time. It uses a 2 inch Sony color monitor and external high quality condenser hydrophone. The housing is modular design with a wide angle dome port or a flat port for at surface shooting. It has adjustable ballast for precise buoyancy control. The entire assembly can be saddled to a Tekna DV-3X underwater scooter. The lighting package consists of twin 180 watt quartz lights with 20 minute burn time mounted to the camera. Additionally, we can mount two 250 watt 40 minute burn time lights for high power needs. We also have a 360 watt canister light with a very wide beam angle. Be sure to check out more on our underwater video work with The World of Diver Don

Still Photography

Yes! we shoot stills too! We have a Fuji MX2900 for digital still photography, a Minolta SLR with an assortment of lenses and filters with strobe for 35mm surface work. For underwater we have a Nikonos V with 15mm, 35mm, 28mm underwater lenses. An Ikelite high powered 150 watt second strobe lights our underwater stills.


Some of our specialties are chroma key shooting, deep cave videography, wreck video, shark video, artificial reef documentation and photo mosaics for reef mapping. We can dive using Viking drysuit systems and have AGA full face mask, KMB band mask, as well as conventional scuba configuration. I personally am certified in Nitrox and Trimix and I am equipped for multiple mixed gasses for long, deep exposure underwater video dives. I have 3 sets of double cylinders as well as a variety of single tanks.  Note:  We no longer do commercial underwater video, nor do we rent the equipment.

TV Shows
Running The Road
American Angler
Commercial editing for:The Designer's Landscape
Jacksonville TV Shopper

PM Magazine, Good Morning America, PBS, Discovery Channel, Florida Crossroads, Florida File, Comedy Central, VH1, Viking America, Vistakon, Omni Video, Backstreet Video Production Group, Florida Girls Network, Fox Hunt Films, Polyanna Films, Poseiden, Paxon Communications, Barnett Bank, AquaVox, Jacksonville Scubanauts Reef Research Team, Jacksonville Shark Club, Anovid, The Parts House, Harris Lighting, Micro Plus Productions, The Dentist Place, Orthodontics Centers, CenterStage Productions, DGD Productions, DreamSound Productions, Delect Advertising, Media One, Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, Mondo-Hollywood, Production Center, Success Development International, American Angler Enterprises, Flip It Corp., and many more.

Sales and Marketing Philosophy

Scuba Tech's goal is to provide video producers, directors, and video production companies with the highest quality video products at the best local prices in our community. As such, we have restricted ourselves to servicing the video and entertainment professional. We do not direct market end user clients. Those listed in our credits were actually attained by subcontracting through other video professionals. While we do not refuse business from the non video professional customer, we prefer to refer the non video professional customer to one of our many talented producer/director-clients who is best able to manage your project for everyone's best interests, both economically and logistically. We have published a rate guide to assist the video professional in budgeting and would be glad to supply this guide to all potential clients.

Need more information?

If you would like more information regarding our rates for the various services pleaseE-mail or fax (904-733-6146) your request on company letterhead and we will be in contact. Please be specific as to your needs.

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