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underwater camera

New Jersey
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181 posts
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underwater camera

looking for the most reasonably priced underwater camera that takes good pictures. any ideas?

Syracuse, New York
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for Seven Mile Beach, West Bay, Syracuse
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1. Re: underwater camera

This may sound like a stupid question, but how deep are you going? The answer to your question changes based on that.

Grand Cayman
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for Grand Cayman
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2. Re: underwater camera

We have been using Canon Elph model(s) on and off for years with great success. The housing is Ikelite and is very reasonable. It also affords great protection for the camera on the boat, beach, etc. If you are a diver and thinking about really getting into it a great idea is to do the underwater cert course. You will learn the tricks of the trade, have private diving and really get your buoyancy skill to an incredible level. Good luck! Would add that on my next trip I am checking out a Go Pro as apparently they really can capture some incredible images however I am trying one that attaches to a wand rather than my head!

Edited: 01 April 2014, 19:00
hudson valley
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3. Re: underwater camera

If you want the simplest option and don't mind the risk that it won't remain waterproof, you can get decent results with just a $250 or $300 camera. New models come out fairly frequently, so I'd suggest using google to see what's available now and look at reviews on some of the websites that are dedicated to camera reviews. Be aware that many people report that all of the waterproof cameras, such as the Pentax Optio or Olympus TG series, invariably leak sooner or later. Even if you're meticulous you can have problems, and many (most or even all?) manufacturers advise that you should replace the seals on an annual basis. Replacing the seals a few times, or replacing a flooded camera will take care of the savings of not buying a dedicated housing. If it matters, you'll also find that none of the waterproof cameras offer full manual capability.

If you're serious, or if you need (or will need) something that is good enough for diving depths, the Ikelite housings are excellent, and can be had for about $350 for many of the less expensive digital cameras. You're probably looking at a minimum of $600 or so, but you've got a good choice of excellent cameras, and much less chance of damage from flooding (you'll still need to be careful, and learn some basic maintenance).

The GoPros, are also a decent choice. They're $3 to $400, very compact and come with a housing that's good enough for typical recreational diving depths. No manual control, but they are capable of very high quality, and will shoot both video or still images. Be aware that they have a very wide field of view, so a 1' fish that's 2' away will look fairly small in the image you capture. Then again, getting close is one of the keys to a good picture with any UW camera.

From your posts I'm guessing that you're only a snorkeler at the moment. If you are, or become, a new diver you'll want to take time to develop good skills before bringing a camera along. It's very difficult to get good pictures if you don't yet have very good buoyancy control, and it's definitely a bad thing to be caught up in your camera and fail to pay attention to how much air you've got and how long you've been at depth.

New Jersey
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4. Re: underwater camera

travellingbrit we will be snorkeling

Charlotte, North...
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248 posts
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5. Re: underwater camera

Olympus Stylus TG-2 takes great underwater pics.

Syracuse, New York
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for Seven Mile Beach, West Bay, Syracuse
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3,995 posts
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6. Re: underwater camera

Ah ok, then you don't need a camera with an expensive housing. That will be a far lower budget. :-)

Take a look at the Olympus Stylus Tough TG-2 iHS ($350) or the Pentax WG-3 ($300) - I think those are relatively current cameras with really good picture quality.

There are some more ideas and reviews here: tropicalsnorkeling.com/waterproof-digital-sn…

Tennessee
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581 posts
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7. Re: underwater camera

I love my GoPro, but I prefer video to photos.

Here's a camera that I have seen some snorkeling experts get good results with:

amazon.com/Olympus-Stylus-TG-850-Digital-Cam…

Gastonia, North...
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3,409 posts
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8. Re: underwater camera

I second the Olympus TG. We love ours. Just be sure to rinse with fresh water after each use and check the seals constantly.

Tennessee
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9. Re: underwater camera

TravelingBrit might have the correct model that I was thinking of. Its the Olympus model that Testudo uses. He may chime in here......

Colorado
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for Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman, Crested Butte, Gunnison
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10. Re: underwater camera

You can find waterproof digital cameras on Amazon.com for under $50 including Coleman, Bell-Howell, Fuji, Olympus and Vivitar

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