There is nothing more interesting than exploring the underwater world. Whether you want to capture marine life or simple snapshots, there is a whole gamut of equipment to suit your demands. But first things first: what are scuba diving cameras? These are high-tech devices that allow scuba divers to capture aquatic life beneath the waters.
However, all cameras are not the same. They vary in terms of diving depth, housing, size, and ease of use. If you’re looking for a scuba diving camera, here are the top models for both beginners and experienced divers. Read on and learn more.
Nikon D810 Digital Camera
Nikon is arguably the best camera for both novice and advanced divers – it’s a trusted brand out there. To start, it comes with 36.3 MP resolution and Expeed 4 processor which helps the diver take photos fast. On the other hand, there are many video playing options. Y ou can change the focus and control the exposure. And just like other cameras under Nikon banner, this model allows for recording.
During underwater photography, you can adjust the speed to suit your preference. Aesthetic wise, this diving camera leaves no details untouched. The outside cover is made of sturdy magnesium housing to ensure it stands the test of time. At the back, you’ll find buttons like shutter operation, flash, metering mode, ISO, and multiple selectors. And in case the camera gets into contact with water, the leak sensor is triggered. This is the perfect option if you’re looking for an affordable device for night diving.
GoPro HERO7 Diving Camera
GoPro is a modern, hi-tech device that allows scuba divers to capture incredible photos and videos underwater. Due to its versatility, you can explore the aquatic life from 30-40 feet. The most important feature is the Time Warp Video which increases the speed of up to 30 times.
In addition to that, the diving camera is equipped with a voice command which allows for voice recording. Thirdly, the HERO7 is fitted with a live streaming feature which helps the user to share the story on Facebook.
If you’re an expert in night diving, this model should be your best bet. It’s equipped with Night Lapse feature that allows for low light nighttime shooting. Unlike the predecessor, HERO7 has 2 times faster image processor and delivers outstanding images.
In terms of video capabilities, you can choose between 4k30 and 720p240. Looking at the accessories, this small device has a lot to offer. It comes with diving goggles, chest strap, helmet, and more.
Canon G7 X 9546B001 Diving Camera
This diving camera is bundled with FG7X II underwater housing that allows a depth of 200 feet- this is breathtaking. The unique housing protects the camera without compromising on functionality. But what is more interesting is the fact that it can accommodate 67 mm wet lenses. Also, this diving camera allows the user to capture more light thanks to (f/2.8 at 100 mm) aperture.
Another feature that makes scuba divers overwhelmingly positive is the powerful 6-image processor. When you combine that with the 20.2-megapixel resolution, you get professional looking images. Not to mention, the initiative LCD panel allows you to shoot from any angle.
If you want to upload the photos, you can make use of Wi-Fi and NFC. This camera is ideal for daytime diving and allows for unlimited customization. The G7 is also particularly good in capturing all colors in low depths.
Olympus M5 Diving Camera
If you want to capture more than what meets the eye, Olympus digital camera has you covered. It comes with an impressive 10 frames per second to ensure you capture the perfect shot. To ensure you capture the extreme close-ups, you can use the unique macro-mode or the zoom feature.
Besides that, the exceptional 5-axis voice coil motor reduces the blur caused by the natural movement of water. To ensure there is no image shake, you can make use of the viewfinder. And just like other high-end underwater cameras, you don’t need a tripod to get the perfect shot.
The DSLR camera comes in a compact size and is incredibly portable. Not only that, it’s fitted with sturdy polycarbonate case or Nauticam Aluminum housing with a depth rating of 328 feet. It’s worth mentioning the Advanced Live Composite features makes this diving camera capture stunning photos even in dark diving conditions. This makes it ideal for cool water and night diving.
Panasonic LUMIX DMC – LX100
The LUMIX is a modern diving camera with tons of impressive features. At first glance, you’ll love the attractive design. It comes in a compact design, so it can fit in tight spaces. Secondly, it’s fitted with LCDs (front and back) that allow you to select the mode that suits you best. On the top side, you’ll find the shutter control.
Another feature you’ll appreciate is the underwater housing. It’s made of aluminum which lets you manage the lens when underwater. You can use this amazing camera between 200- 328 feet.
Despite its small body, this camera features 4 1/3-Format which is unique in this day and age. But what is even more interesting is the fact that there are no blurs or shakes. Just like the outgoing model, LUMIX comes in 4K/30 fps format.
When you combine this with the inbuilt light sensors, you can capture stunning photos/videos in any environment. This camera is ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving. The large lens will ensure you get clear images all the time.
Sony-Cyber Shot Digital Diving Camera
The Cyber-Shot is a remarkable underwater camera. It uses state-of-the-art technology which makes it suitable for aquatic adventures. Many professionals prefer Sony as opposed to traditional counterparts due to its unmatched reliability.
Looking at the design, you can be sure the unit will last for many years. The outer case ensures durability and sturdiness. You can use it confidently at depths of up to 130 feet.
The zoom and OLED sensor is located at the front part of the camera while the lens takes 40% of the front part. But what is even more intriguing is the big buttons. No matter the underwater condition, you can use the shutter release button with ease.
The other standard feature is Wi-Fi connectivity. Once you capture your photos and videos, you can easily share with your friends on Facebook.
Performance-wise, this camera is in its own league. It allows recording, has great shutter speeds, you can use Anti-distortion electric shutter and 3.6X optical zoom. Without a doubt, this little device will help you get breathtaking photos and videos of underwater adventures.
A quick buying guide on scuba diving camera
If you want to have the best experience when scuba diving, you should invest in a high-end camera. But with the many models out there, choosing the right diving camera can be bewildering. It’s imperative that you first understand the basics of underwater photography. Here are the main features to look for to help you make a wise investment decision.
The top brands like Canon, Panasonic, Olympus, Nikon, and Sony are supported by top housing manufacturers. Before you buy a diving camera, make sure there is a suitable housing available. High-end cameras will have multiple housing options.
Compact Vs. DSLR
Underwater cameras come as either compact or DSR camera. As the name suggests, compact cameras are small and also the cheapest. If you’re new to photography, you should buy a compact camera.
On the other hand, DSLR cameras are best suited for seasoned photographers. The key is to find the right combination of size, features, and budget
This refers to the time you press the start and when the actual image is captured. Sometimes, shutter lag can be frustrating if you’re trying to capture moving objects. To ensure you get the best pictures, select a model with the least shutter lag.
If you’re interested in underwater wide-angle shooting, you should select a camera that fits third-party fisheye wet lenses. That way, you’ll get closer to the object resulting in more detailed images. If you’re shooting with a DSLR, make sure you use the appropriate ports for each lens.
Perhaps the most important decision you can make when buying an underwater camera is to decide whether a model shoots in manual mode or not. The truth is that manual controls are more effective in water than auto controls.
Believe it or not, you can actually operate some with your gloves on. This means you don’t have to go through the confusing menu to shoot videos. If you don’t fancy cameras with manual controls, go for fully automatic cameras.
Before you buy a camera, make sure you understand the recommended depth. If you go deeper than what the manufacturer recommends, you run the risk of damaging the camera. Keep in mind that some aquatic life can only be seen at a certain depth. If possible for the unit that allows for maximum depth.
While most people consider this as an afterthought, it’s an important factor if you’re new to scuba diving. Because you’re already overburdened by the heavy gear, you should keep the camera system small. Sometimes, the size of the camera can be deceiving.
A big camera does not necessarily mean it has all the features you need. Just get a pocket-sized camera and explore the deep waters.
If your journey as a scuba diver has just begun, you should have the right diving camera at your disposal. Depending on your taste, you can choose any of the above devices and you’ll never miss the beauty beneath the waters. It’s time you take your photography skills to the next level.