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Underwater Camera

Texas
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125 posts
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Underwater Camera

Wanted to know any opinions on a Water proof camera (Like Olympus SW1030) vs a Digital camera and a housing (Canon SD1100 IS with housing).

Any information will be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Northern California...
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1. Re: Underwater Camera

You have to remember to take the lens cap off the housing (says someone who has an excellent shot of the inside of an orange Olympus UW housing lens cap)

Kiawah Island...
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for Kiawah Island, Charleston
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2. Re: Underwater Camera

I kayak and have had a Pentax Optio Waterproof for several years, it's small and a very good camera.

I just bought the Canon Powershot G9 and housing for some upcoming trips, the pics are totally incredible (you just have to remember to check the housing for waterspots regularly, though you have to do the same w/the Pentax or any of them).

A friend just got the new Olympus waterproof and she's very happy w/it. We are both into our pics and really like clarity and ease. I think the Canon is the best of the three (and it's got an old fashioned viewfinder as well as the digital screen, though you can't use it when the camera is in the housing).

Nebraska
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3. Re: Underwater Camera

I have used digital cameras both with and without housings and much prefer the digital camera without a housing. I have the Olympus Stylus 790SW that does not require a housing. Its preset modes work very well and help make easy transition from underwater to land shots. Also has a movie mode. The photos are quite sharp and have sufficient resolution for enlargements. I am very pleased with its performance.

My first digital underwater camera required a housing. While the housing sealed well, it was a hassle and always a worry. In fact a small clip broke on the housing just from bumping against my leg ... and that ended its usefulness. I really believe the only time you'd want a camera requiring a housing is if you are using professional-level equipment. But that type of housing is very expensive (often more than the camera!) If you are scuba diving as opposed to snorkeling, though, a camera with housing may be your best alternative to deal with the high pressure. Check the depth maximums on no-housing cameras before deciding.

Nor-Cal
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2,344 posts
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4. Re: Underwater Camera

i just got mine for my Cannon 760 on beachcamera.com

i'll try it out next month

30 days to Maui!

Texas
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125 posts
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5. Re: Underwater Camera

Yeah it's just for snorkeling and other surface water type activities, but wanted something rough and rugged too.

Lagrangeville, NY
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2,968 posts
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6. Re: Underwater Camera

You cannot beat the Olympus Stylus SW series for ruggedness. It is waterproof (of course, that's what we are discussion here), shock proof, crush proof, freeze proof (occasionally useful in Hawaii if you go to Mauna Kea on a cold winter night).

We bought the 770 (7M pixels) when it first came out, of course now the best model has 10M pixels. We used our 770 on our last trip and it worked fine underwater. Now if we can only get the fish to stay still and pose for us. LOL

Buckley, Washington
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109 posts
2 reviews
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7. Re: Underwater Camera

I recently submitted a post about my experience with a Vivitar underwater camera:

tripadvisor.com/…12281143

The link in that post will let you see both photos and videos that I took with the camera. Some people didn't seem to realize that pictures with the little arrow in the lower left corner were videos. If you click on them you will be able to play the videos, and there's a control in the lower right to make the video full screen. I got some really nice videos of moray eels.

I had considered getting one of the Olympus waterproofs, but the Vivitar was much less expensive. I've also used a regular digital camera with the AquaPac waterproof bag. It worked fairly well, but an actual underwater camera was much easier.

Texas
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8. Re: Underwater Camera

Tafkar,

How does the Vivitar work on land?

I haven't had a chance to look at the pictures yet, I will later today

Buckley, Washington
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109 posts
2 reviews
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9. Re: Underwater Camera

The Vivitar underwater camera takes fairly good pictures out of the water too. However, the audio recording function is optimized for underwater use, so videos taken out of the water have poor audio quality. It's 6 megapixel, which I've read is about optimal for a compact digital. Some disadvantages: it is not as compact as most modern cameras; it doesn't have a viewfinder, only the LCD screen for framing shots; limited manual settings; somewhat low resolution videos; even on macro setting it could not focus on objects closer than about 20 inches.

Reedsport, Oregon
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45 reviews
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10. Re: Underwater Camera

We have two older Olympus cameras with cases. A C5050 and a D565. They both work great. A couple things to remember about the "waterproof" cameras that don't require a case. First, they are only good down to usually 10ft. or so, so no free diving if you do that while snorkeling. Second, they are only suppose to be in the water for less than a half an hour if I remember right. We go out for an hour to two hours at a time so you have to watch that. But I have seen some nice pictures underwater from them.

Here are some pics we took with them the last 2 weeks on Hawaii and Kauai.

…google.com/Islandsnorkeler/HonaunauBay

…google.com/Islandsnorkeler/KahaluUBay

picasaweb.google.com/Islandsnorkeler/Tunnels