waterproof case for digital camera?

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by dreamcometrue, May 2, 2006.

  1. dreamcometrue

    dreamcometrue <font color=blue>Laughed on her wedding night<br><

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    I have been wanting to purchase a smaller camera, to carry around in my purse and for when we go on vacation, so I don't always have to lug my Rebel around. I really think I'll go for the Canon Powershot SD630. Looking on amazon, I noticed that they also make a waterproof case for this camera. I have never heard of this before! This would be fabulous for snorkeling and around the beach, I'd never have to worry about the camera getting damaged!

    Has anyone ever bought a waterproof case for a camera? This is actually the first I have ever heard of it, but maybe this has been around for a while? Sounds like a great idea to me, however I would be very hesitant to actually submerge the camera in the waterproof case underwater. How can I be sure it doesn't leak?

    Just wondering if anyone has ever heard of this/bought this for their camera? If so, what are your experiences?
     
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  3. TiggerKing

    TiggerKing If we don't go crazy once in a while, we'll all go

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    First off, when considering a waterproof case, stick to one that is sold under the same brand name (i.e. Canon). This will ensure you that the case is designed for a specific model of camera. Waterproof cases have been around for decades and fit everything from the old 110 cameras up to professional level still and video cameras. Most cases are rated to a depth that far exceeds snorkeling and most sport diving limits.

    After purchasing a waterproof case, I would personally give the case a bathtub test without the camera in it. I would submerge it for several minutes and then check for any leaks. If none are present, I would not hesitate in the least about using the case for the camera.

    Now, for the other side of the coin. Although it is nice to have a waterproof case for a camera, it may not be the best economic value. I know that the case for my Canon A-95 is $165. If you are only going to use the case once or twice a year, the cost of maintenance on the case (o-rings, etc.) could exceed the benefit. You might be better off using a disposable underwater camera, like a Fuji or Kodak. These cameras take wonderful pictures, and generally cost less than $15 at Wal-Mart and other retailers.

    So, bottom line is that if you decide to buy a case, don't be concerned about using it for its intended purpose. But, also consider all of the economic factors involved and determine whether that is the best investment.

    Hope this helps.
     
  4. BuzzNutt

    BuzzNutt Becoming an Expert

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    I just bought mine for my canon powershot 500. It is awesome. I did buy the specific one made by canon for my camera. I felt safest going this way. I haven't taken any water pictures yet except of the bottom of my bath tub to test the case. I highly recommend doing it!
     
  5. DisneyMomforLife

    DisneyMomforLife DIS Veteran

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    I too recently bought the underwater casing made specifically for my Canon digital camera. I found that not only is it good for the underwater shots, but for other places in general, like keeping sand or dirt out of it. I also found that it makes the camera a little safer for smaller hands that enjoy taking digital photographs (if it gets knocked into the wall or something, it’s protected). If you buy the exact model that is made for your camera, you should have NO fears. I will admit that I had some, but they were completely gone after just a few minutes. You “grease” the seal before using it and it becomes completely air-tight. It is a fantastic investment if you enjoy taking pictures. I found myself taking more underwater pictures of the kids in the pool, etc., because I had it. Good luck!!

    Kat
     
  6. dreamcometrue

    dreamcometrue <font color=blue>Laughed on her wedding night<br><

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    Thanks for your input! The one I am looking at is indeed the one made by Canon specificially for the camera model I am looking at. We live by the beach and go quite a bit in the summer (almost daily), and I would use the case a lot there to keep sand out of the camera. We also ski a lot in the winter, and I am always hesitant bringing the camera along, of fear it will get wet. So I am not worried about getting no use out of it!

    Quick question about the disposable underwater cams. If I get a few for our cruise, are they good to take pictures out of the water too?
     
  7. disney_imagineer

    disney_imagineer Mouseketeer

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    i have an old Canon S45 and looking to find an underwater case as well for my upcoming DCL trip. since the S45 is an older camera, it's a bit harder to find one. got a lead on one through ebay. but my question is size. i have never seen one of these upfront and personal. does that case bulk-up the camera quite a bit?

    PS-i was looking at the SD630 the other day and really like the size of that one. i just can't afford another digital camera and an underwater case. one alternative i was looking at was teh Pentax Optio W10 that is designed for underwater use. however, i heard the pictures from that camera isn't that great. :confused3
     
  8. mattmommy

    mattmommy Mouseketeer<br><font color=green>My DS loves rice.

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    I've bought two (not fancy) water camera covers (they came with a camera). You could take off the housing and use it as a regular camera or just leave it on. One leaked right away and the second leaked with the second use. I'm sure if it's a high end case it will work much better.

    I just stick to the disposable water cameras. The only thing they don't have (yet) is a flash so they're good for beach, pool or just when you don't want to leave a fancy camera laying about. The pictures are pretty good. I usually use Fuji because they're about $7 at WalMart compared to Kodak's $11+. At WDW and the boat I believe they were $20+. I bought 2 for my upcoming cruise with the thought of buying more.

    Although with the money I save I usually have the film developed at my hotel or the park.
     
  9. TiggerKing

    TiggerKing If we don't go crazy once in a while, we'll all go

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    It sounds like the underwater case would be a great investment for you! The disposable underwater cams are essentially the same disposable camera, just with a plastic housing. They should do just as well out of the water as long as you don't require a flash. Hopefully that isn't too far in the distant future.

    Most cases will bulk up the camera's size about 50%. The weight will increase, but it should not be dramatic. Of course the weight is offset by the water when in use. I would also suggest you check a camera reseller called KEH Cameras. They specialize in used equipment. You would be surprised at the number of professionals who use this company to purchase high quality, used equipment.
     
  10. NurseChell

    NurseChell Mouseketeer

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    Has anyone ever used the soft plastic waterproof cases like what is sold at the waterproof store (www.thewaterproofstore.com)?
    Was thinking about purchasing one for the camera, but dont know how well they work.
     
  11. musicgirl

    musicgirl <font color=coral>Pooh lover<br><font color=teal>M

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  12. disney_imagineer

    disney_imagineer Mouseketeer

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    i'm looking into a case for my digital because i notice that when i use disposable underwater cameras, they fog up. and once that happens, there's just no way to getting rid of the fog. and all the pictures turn out hazy and foggy, ruining everything. that's my hesistation with disposable ones. they are a cheap investment for a trip. but any hints on getting rid of that fogging-up problem?

    with a case, you can always open it up, wipe it down, grease it back up, seal it up, and off you go for some more pics! :banana:
     
  13. tinksdad

    tinksdad It's a Good day to get Wet!

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    Popular topic!!

    UW housings are available for quite a few different cameras. Canon, Nikon and Olympus have a great selection for "their" cameras.

    I use the Olympus C-7070 with the PT-27 housing. It's been great, but you have to take care of them. The maintence on the O-rings is VERY important. One little hair or piece of lint and the housing can flood.

    It's a lot of fun and has brought a new dimension to my diving!! It amazes me how much life there is under the water, and how much of it is very small!! :banana:
     
  14. tinksdad

    tinksdad It's a Good day to get Wet!

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    Is the fog on the outside or inside of the lens?
    If you have the camera in the cooler room and take it out into the hot/humid tropical air, it can fog up. This can happen with a more expensive one too when coupled with a housing. Try to keep all units at approximately the same temp, that will help.
     
  15. LuvsTheSun

    LuvsTheSun Earning My Ears

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    Buy the underwater case for your camera! You'll love it. After years of toting around several disposable underwater cameras, and feeling limited with the results, I purchased the Olympus Stylus 500 digital camera last year (wanted the small size for portability, have the Canon Rebel XT Digital) and bought the Pt-026 underwater housing made for the camera. The initial outlay for the housing might seem like an expense, but if you consider the savings on not having to develop each roll of film in the waterproof cameras, plus not having to buy the cameras for each use, it's something you might want to consider if it's in your means. Having the flash from your camera helps to enhance better picture quality at a deeper depth and brings out the colors. Also, you are able to use the zoom feature of the digital camera to get in closer. I got some great pictures when we were in Aruba last summer both of the underwater life and especially the inside of shipwrecks. The maintenance isn't too bad, you just have to be careful to make sure the o-rings are clean, and the trick is to not put too much grease on the rings, or that will mess up the seal and flood your camera.

    Now, even though I think the underwater housings are great, some people might not feel the need for them. My DH likes things easy and is satisfied with just your basic disposable underwater camera and the pictures it takes. I tend to be more critical and like better quality. I also like the fact that it can protect your camera from the salt and sand, and can be used out of the water if you are at a beach. I am saving space by not packing extra disposable cameras, and all pictures are stored on my memory cards, and I can put them on a CD when I return home from vacation.

    Lynne
     
  16. beachblanket

    beachblanket DIS Veteran

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    With digital cameras (particularly the hot point and shoot category) improving by the month and their prices dropping by the hour, the days when it made financial sense to invest in a three figure underwater housing for a single, specific model of camera are long, long gone.

    For the type of use by 98% of the people on this board (snorkeling in relatively shallow water), pick up one of these and no only save a huge amount, but have something that is useful with not just your current camera but also whatever you'll be using a year (or 5 or 10 years) from now:

    [​IMG]

    http://www.thewaterproofstore.com/cameracase.html
     
  17. Kastaway-Kurt

    Kastaway-Kurt Counting the days to Castaway Cay

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    I bought the Pentax Optio WP 5MP Waterproof Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom specifically for our upcoming cruise.

    It has more functions then I would ever have need for and it is very easy to use. It's small enough to take everywhere and waterproof, (I've thoroughly tested it in the pool). If it gets dirty or sandy you can simply rinse it off. The internal memory was inadequate. I bought two 512MB memory cards capable of handling 300 photos or 30 minutes of video at the highest resolution. The pictures are top quality IMHO. :thumbsup2 :thumbsup2

    I wish it would float 'cause if it sinks I'm sunk. :lmao:
     
  18. disneycrazzzy

    disneycrazzzy DIS Veteran

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    We have the CANON waterproof case for both our SD230 and SD550 digital cameras. We use them when we snorkel. Here is why:

    1) We can utilize all the controls (delete pictures, view pictures, zoom, etc.) with the case on.
    2) They take much better pictures than your disposable underwater cameras. And I know! We spent many trips lugging disposables in our carry ons across the country. We might have gotten one or two good pictures from each roll.
    3) Both of these cameras can take snippets of video. You really get an appreciation of underwater life when you can see the fish moving. We've taken up to 5 min. videos of turtles and eels and some more exotic fish. Of course it helps that we have 2g SD card.
    4) The cameras fit in our fanny packs and we use them to take pictures above water too!
    5) The cases keep them safe on the beach or on a boat.
    6) One camera and one battery can take 100s of pictures without getting out of the water.

    Here are some examples of pictures we took on our recent trip to Hawaii. Note: We are amateurs. We see something neat and we snap a photo.

    [​IMG]
    Trumpet Fish using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Moorish Idol using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Peacock Flounder using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Dragon Wrasse using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Sea Urchin using Canon Powershot SD230

    [​IMG]
    Moray Eel using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Spotted Boxfish using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Crown of Thorns using Canon Powershot SD230

    [​IMG]
    Green Sea Turtle using Canon Powershot SD230

    [​IMG]
    Yellowtail Coris using Canon Powershot SD550

    [​IMG]
    Sea Urchin (still frame from a video) using Canon Powershot SD550
     
  19. dreamcometrue

    dreamcometrue <font color=blue>Laughed on her wedding night<br><

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    disneycrazzzzy, you just convinced me. I actually ordered the Canon Powershot SD630 2 days ago, but held off on the waterproof case, but I will definitely order it within the next few weeks!

    Great pictures! :thumbsup2
     
  20. LuvsTheSun

    LuvsTheSun Earning My Ears

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    disneycrazzzy....your pictures turned out great. Which Canon camera did you use for them? By the way, we are also planning an extended trip to 4 of the Hawaiian Islands this summer. Where did you go snorkeling to see all the great fish? I'd love to see some colorful fish and marine life, and it looks like you found a great place to snorkle. Thanks.

    Lynne
     
  21. disneycrazzzy

    disneycrazzzy DIS Veteran

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    Lynne,

    I added which camera (the Canon Powershot SD230 or SD550) took each of the pictures above. I believe the SD230 is a discontinued model....we've had it a few years. We recently purchased the SD550 because Canon makes an underwater case for it and it has a special "underwater" setting. All of these pictures were taken near Kona on the Big Island....either Kahalu'u, Honaunau, or from Fairwind's Hula Kai tour boat. At least one of these pictures was taken by my 12 year old son. You shouldn't have any problems finding places to snorkel if you are going to any of the islands. I would recommend Hanauma Bay on Oahu, Kahalu'u Beach on the Big Island, Molokini Island (by boat) on Maui. We've never been to Kauai, so I don't know about that firsthand. We've only been snorkeling since Christmas of 2004 and are absolutely hooked on the sport. Boogie boarding is great too! We have two more trips to the Big Island planned in the future....

    Have fun this summer in Hawaii...I have to wait until Christmas for another visit...

    disneycrazzzy
     

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