I reckon there must be quite a few divers amongst us, so I'm hoping to get a bit of advice regarding what camera is easy enough to use underwater, but also good enough to take decent shots, short films as well even.
We are very new to diving but feel we are starting to get confident enough not to spend too much time worrying about the technical aspects but marvelling at the amazing creatures around us. So now the next step would be to try and photograph some of them...
We bought a cheap film camera the other day and although we were actually pleasantly surprised with the results, there's no doubt that a digital one would do a much better job... besides giving us the huge advantage of being able to take many more pictures of course! Not to mention about all the money you save in the long run, not having to pay for the film to be burned onto CD...
So, what camera do you have, and would you recommend it and why?
Many thanks in advance!
Well - I hoped this would be picked up by a few of the divers on the site: I guess I'll start.
For most of the shots I've made I used a Canon Ixus 800 IS - it is a really nice camera in it's own right, useful for places I wouldn't take my Nikon DSLR.
The case Canon WP-DC5 - specifically made for this model. Why would I recommend this combination:
1. Cheap and high quality. (I paid about $450 for both back in March)
2. All the controls (except print!) are accessible with the underwater housing.
3. Reasonable video functions - terrible audio though!
4. Good camera to have even without the underwater housing.
One caveat with underwater cameras - you have to get the housing and camera at the same time - or risk not being able to get one or the other at a later point. I had a Ixus 700 and housing but unfortunately the camera died due to getting sand into the lens mechanism... several unfocused grinding shots later... I searched Kuala Lumpur for another Ixus 700 but just couldn't get one. I had to buy the bundle or not take photos and videos underwater while diving everyday for about 6 months...
I've just looked up similar equipment for my camera. Assuming I can't afford the equipment which is about £100 has anyone used disposable cameras? Is the quality ok? Or would you recommend spending the money and getting the underwater housing!
Thanks in advance
If you're only diving every now and then - many dive shops rent out digital cameras and housing - ask them - usually about $10-15 for a day...
What is the quality like of the flexible underwater cases you can buy in travel shops (I think they cost ~UK£15)? They look like map cases, but claim to be completely waterproof.
Does the flexible underwater case fit any camera? That is quite cheap for underwater casing for a camera. I heard some bad stories about underwater housing leaking on digital cameras. I wouldn't mind a new one but I am sure my insurance people wouldn't cough up and I'd probably lose all my beautiful photos. Has anyone had a bad experience with underwater casing?
I wouldn't trust the flexible cases for anything more than snorkelling. I've never used one.
Bad experiences - yeah - people have them all the time - the best one I heard is opening up the case underwater to change the battery.
I have used disposable cameras underwater, but not with good results and not recently. You need lots of light for good photos, so they are only any good just below the surface. I wouldn't trust the flex cases, but have never used one. Personally, I have a Nikonos and it is bloody marvellous, but they are a) expensive & b) a bit cumbersome if you are just starting out. Good luck & enjoy the diving & the photograhy. Look forward to seeing the pictures on here some time!
Just reading thru. May I ask, how do you actually open up the underwater housing in water to change batt? Is it possible?
Yes it is possible - exactly the same way as you would on land only wetter.
but thought the camera ain't waterproof? If were to open the case underwater changing batt, won't the camera got wet? and also with the water pressure? E.g. Mine is Canon G9 with Canon housing.
By wetter...I'm sure Ali means...bye bye camera...as if you do open it under the water...and it is not waterproof...well...doesn't make any sens.
This is why when you dive...you get prepared...battery charged and enough free space on your card to gets the pics you want.
Was 3 weeks ago diving in Thailand and the whale shark arrive...one of the guy had a full memory card...well done...he was lucky that the whale sharks...2 of them stay with us for the all dives...so he did some "cleaning"on his memory card while diving...