Best Underwater Camera 2019 • 0 Underwater Cameras Reviews
Eyes open when buying an underwater camera: our purchase consultant
Standard for photography under the sea level or in a lake the quality of the images and the high-quality processing of the camera plays a decisive role. The water places high demands on camera performance and the protective housing. Finding the right camera in the vast number of underwater cameras seems to be a hopeless undertaking for many laymen. With this Underwater Purchase Advisor we want to give you some independent tips that will guide you safely through the underwater camera jungle. Of course, we have also referred to external sources and purchase guides for the underwater camera.
How does an underwater camera work?
If you dive down into the depths of the sea, you will see a fascinating underwater world. In order to capture these visual impressions, an underwater camera is very helpful. The underwater camera is like a normal camera , only with the difference that it can be used under the water surface. With the increase in technology, digital cameras have crystallized in recent years with which one can capture the fascinating underwater world. A diver almost doesn't go into the depths anymore without the camera. But an underwater camera is also very suitable for other events. When snorkelling, an amazing underwater world can be captured even at shallow depths. Or also when playing in the pool with the children, so that the camera is protected from water or just to take pictures under water – the underwater camera is a useful helper.
Also on the beach an underwater camera can do very good service, because the camera is not always used only under the water surface. The underwater camera has the same complicated technology inside as a normal camera that almost everyone has today. However, the housing of the underwater camera is special. As there are several types of underwater cameras, a full housing or a housing with seals can be used. Next, let's have a look at which variants of underwater cameras there are.
Different Underwater Camera Types
There is a so called One-Way-Camera. This camera is surrounded by a waterproof housing and has a normal photo film. This must still be given to the development, before one can look at the pictures. The advantages of a digital camera are therefore lost with such a model. Nevertheless, the disposable underwater camera has a serious advantage – the Price. You can already buy a disposable underwater camera for 10 Euro. One film in it is sufficient for about 24 to 28 pictures, depending on model and manufacturer. If you only use the underwater camera once, this is an inexpensive alternative. However, if you want to use the underwater camera more often, it is advisable to purchase a real digital camera.
Here you now have the choice between a digital camera, which you then give in a waterproof packaging. The advantage of this is that you can use the camera for other purposes at any time. The housing, which is placed around the camera, is quite often very klobig. The once so practical Poket camera then suddenly no longer fits in your trouser or jacket pocket. If you want to use the camera only on holiday or only once a year to take pictures under the water surface, this model can also be a real alternative.
However, if you attach great importance to quality and functions, then an underwater camera is highly recommended. These cameras are designed in the same way as a conventional digital camera. There are connections to transfer the images to the PC. The underwater camera should have a Zoom and should be able to accept various other settings. It is also possible with a modern underwater camera to shoot razor sharp videos under water. A difference can still be seen with a specially manufactured underwater camera.
It often happens that with a conventional camera, the deeper you dive into the water, you can see a greenish color cast. This is a completely normal process, which has something to do with the refraction of light. The underwater camera has a function that prevents the green cast and produces a realistic colour result.
The demand for perfect underwater cameras is constantly growing, which is why there are more and more manufacturers who want to convince with special functions. We took a very close look at the underwater cameras and are now telling you what criteria we used to proceed.
Test criteria: How did we test the underwater cameras?
In our test it was important to us that the delivery and the packaging were rated. For this reason, there is also a point in our product reports that explains these details. Next, it is important that an underwater camera is easy to operate. We have looked at the individual functions and how they can be changed under water with gloves. The handling is a very important point, which should therefore turn out very simply. After all, sometimes it has to go very fast under water to take snapshots. We also tested the video function if it was present on the underwater camera.
More importantly, the final result should show us. How big was Display to view the pictures directly after taking the picture? How easy it was to transfer the images to the PC. Is there a connection to a TV set? We looked at all the important details to get a good impression of the underwater camera and its functions. In the end we compared the individual devices with each other so that you can find out exactly where the strengths and where the weaknesses lie.
What functions are important for an underwater camera?
Before you buy an underwater camera, you should compare the data exactly. Most important is the pixel value. Especially under water one should be able to shoot pin sharp pictures without further ado. A value that moves around the 10 megapixels is recommended here. If the price-performance ratio is correct, it may also be a slightly higher value.
With an underwater camera the watertightness is elementary. Here it now depends on the depth to which you want to move. There are cameras that range up to 5, 10 or even over 25 meters. To make the selection easier for you, a comparison is very advisable, which also lists the water tightness between the individual devices. If you want to snorkel at a swimming lake, an underwater camera with a limit of 5 meters is perfectly sufficient. For all other requirements, a correspondingly higher value is required.
There is also a digital zoom for underwater cameras. Just remember that something fascinating might suddenly appear in front of your lens. For this reason alone, you should pay attention to a good zoom.
The Display via which you can then view the recordings should be at least 2.5 inches. Of course, it is better if the display is a little larger. Surely you can do without the display altogether, but those who were used to it would not want to miss this useful detail anymore.
The image stabilization is another detail that should not be missing from an underwater camera. Especially if you move under water, there can be a lot of blurring. An image stabilizer is used so that these wobblers cannot be seen on the picture. This should therefore always be present with an underwater camera. Another function is called haptics.
Haptik is a word which actually only describes the sensitization of the keys. If you are under water, your fingers are less sensitive. Likewise, one is no longer directly able to carry out the touches exactly. Therefore, it is especially important that the buttons of the underwater camera are larger and can be operated even after a long time under water. It is advantageous that you can operate the underwater camera almost without looking. Once a setting has been changed, it is no longer so easy to restore the default setting. The result will then be blurred or in the worst case no images at all.
For an underwater camera it is also elementary that a white balance can take place. This ensures that the colors appear more realistically on the image. The lighting conditions under water change constantly, so the camera should always optimize this setting. This is the only way to create wonderful pictures that capture your impressions under water. The last function to be considered is a video function.
Not every underwater camera has a video function. Here it depends on whether you want to record videos under the water surface or not. This function is certainly also noticeable in the final price of the device. Therefore, consider carefully whether you want to use the video function or not.
Which underwater camera fits me?
There are many different models and also different manufacturers that offer underwater cameras. In order to choose the right camera, you should consider your requirements beforehand. The most important question is how often you want to use the underwater camera. If you only need the underwater camera once a year, a cheaper model will probably do. If you go diving or snorkeling regularly you will probably get along better with a higher quality model. Finally, the question of quality also arises. It is likely that a cheap model does not have as many settings as a high quality model. At least always make sure that the underwater camera has a color balance. Megapixels also play an important role. In the end it is also a question of Handlings. An underwater camera that is easy to operate is used more often than a camera that is equipped with complicated functions.
Our Comparison helps you to determine the different models and to recognize at a glance which device is better suited for you and your requirements.
Buy an underwater camera: What does an underwater camera cost?
For underwater cameras the price depends on performance. You get the simple one-way underwater cameras already around 10 Euro. If you attach great importance to various settings, an underwater camera can quickly cost up to 300 euros. With the latter, however, you have a purchase that provides several years of razor-sharp images under the water surface. Models that cost far more than 300 Euros are equipped with special functions that are very suitable for amateur photographers and professionals. The cost limit of the cameras is also open upwards like with other devices and can even go into the thousands.
You should pay attention to this when buying
There are some aspects that you should pay attention to urgently in order not to reach for the wrong underwater camera model in your holiday anticipation.
- More than 10 Megapixel: The resolution isn't everything, but it's worth its weight in gold for sharp images under water. Pay attention to a modern number of megapixels, ideally more than 10MP
- 5m waterproof: depending on how deep you want to dive this recommendation has to be corrected upwards. Especially for snorkeling, be it in the bathing lake or in the Caribbean, the 5m limit should be sufficient. Calculate here rather a little too generously than too sparingly.
- Digital zoom: It's hard to imagine conventional cameras without digital zoom, but it's only in recent years that underwater cameras have become mature technologies. We're talking about the digital zoom. As a guideline from our comparison, this should be at least 5 magnification levels, so that you can also capture slightly more distant impressions without problems.
- Large display: 2 inch is already the lowest limit. Both under water and when looking at the photos afterwards, a large display makes viewing them much easier and is a “luxury” that one would not want to miss so quickly
- Image stabilization: an absolute must not only during swell and on the high seas. Especially in underwater photography, images are blurred or blurred much faster. With an integrated image stabilization, the tested models were able to compensate or avoid these “wobblers” to a large extent.
- Haptics: The sensitivity of the fingers and the sensitivity of the touch are limited by the water. All the more important are large keys with a good feel, which can be operated well and intuitively even during longer dives. Because under water a setting again correctly to adjust or to navigate inconveniently by a menu – in addition lacks most time and desire!
- Underwater white balance: indispensable. Unfortunately, our product reports show that there is still a significant lack of these devices. In order to achieve at least approximately lifelike pictures, the camera must adapt to the current lighting conditions by means of a white balance under water. If the underwater camera does not have such a function, the images are too saturated or slightly faded.
- Optional: Video function: A shoal of fish, the coral bank or the thicket of sea plants, pictures say more than a thousand words. A video function can help to capture these impressive experiences up close. If you decide for such a function you should pay attention to a corresponding quality of the camera. Because videos in a bad quality will hardly let the holiday feeling revive probably again. The current state of the art are VGA cameras which store videos in HD quality. Our comparison winner from Canon, for example, scores with this function.
By keeping this checklist in mind, you avoid at least the most common mistakes customers make when ordering an underwater camera.
The top underwater camera brands:
Advantages of an underwater camera
The classic photo book is increasingly giving way to digital media and storage formats. Nevertheless, they also have the same goal: to capture impressions and preserve them for later. Especially a holiday with an underwater landscape worth seeing – maybe even the honeymoon in the Dominican Republic – or an excursion to the neighbouring moor lake: these are all experiences that one likes to document in order to be able to indulge even years later with a smile in the memories.
Especially during a diving holiday the first impression of the island and the sandy beach might be so overwhelming that you can hardly follow the pictures with a conventional digital camera. But this is nothing compared to the endless vastness and breathtaking underwater worlds. Every hobby diver here will only nod in agreement.
And it is precisely these moments that can be optimally staged and captured thanks to a modern underwater camera. With it you bring your vacation experiences to your friends and relatives a little closer and go at the same time again on a mental dive.
In the internet vs. specialized trade – where do I buy my underwater camera best?
There are different ways where you can buy an underwater camera. The Reseller has various models from which you can choose a suitable model. Even in Supermarket you can buy underwater cameras from time to time. What is missing here, however, is the clarification of the various models. The specialist dealer will only advise you on these models, which he has in stock at the moment. There are many more models by far that you should compare with each other. On the Internet, you have the choice to compare all models with each other, including models that are less well known.
The selection is simply larger and the chance is higher that you will find a model in Internet that corresponds 100 percent to your ideas. Another point should be the cost factor. If you buy the underwater camera on the Internet, then you will find the model at a far price advantage. The specialized trade may have the same model, but the price will be much higher. In the net dealers can calculate completely differently, which also explains the favorable price. There is another advantage, especially for working people, which makes buying on the Internet more attractive. It's about flexibility.
If, after a while, you don't feel like shopping anymore, just pick up where you left off tomorrow. Buying on the Internet is therefore far more attractive than buying from a conventional specialist retailer.
With this in mind, we wish you lots of fun choosing the right underwater camera. We hope that our test can support you actively!
FAQ about underwater camera
Which product is generally considered an underwater camera?
Winner of the test?
The Olympus Tough TG-5 is considered the general test winner according to various external tests on the Internet. The model offers numerous functions and scores with a successful image and video quality.
Which is the best underwater camera?
The best underwater camera is the Olympus Tough TG-5, which is waterproof to a depth of 15 meters. In addition, the model impresses with its enormous scope of delivery.
Underwater camera rating – what are the essential points?
The underwater camera allows you to take pictures while diving, swimming or snorkeling. The Olympus Tough TG-5 was the test winner according to various tests on the Internet. The Olympus is waterproof up to 15 metres and has a 4x zoom. In addition, the camera offers a first-class image in addition to video quality, a display and various highlights.