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Advice on digital camera

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Jun 13, 2003

Please help totally confused spearo:eek: I'm totally clueless when it comes to cameras. I own a Canon Ixus APS and i now want to get a digital camera. I'm looking for an entry level camera which i can put in a waterproof case and take some shots of fish that have been speared. Not looking to photograph at any great depth, maybe just some photo's on the boat and some shots of freshly speared fish just before the diver puts it in the boat. Sort of wanting to capture their colours before they fade away completely. So average depth would probably be 1-3 meters. What are the minimum requirements on these digital camera, ie pixels, memory, etc, should it have a flash, etc (i'm a total novice!!)


I know that the digital Ixus has pretty cheap UW-houses. But in order to get anything out of an UW-camera I believe you have to have an external flash. Otherways there will be "snow" all over your pictures when you use the built in flash. So my question is, does any of the Ixuses or other cheap digitals have the possibilitiy to connect an external flash?
Hey guys,

I just bought a Canon A80 and housing and I'm pretty happy with it so far. The trick is to just take lots of pictures and learn all the little idiosyncrasies of the camera. It' s easy to be put off when you take a bunch and only a few turn out nice... but at least you didn't pay to get them developed.;)

Miles, I went through the same deal looking for a camera... you can get housings for most of the Canon powershots, also for olympus, sony, and one or two samsung and fuji digitals. Canon A70 is very popular and I've seen some awesome u/w pics taken with it... should be really cheap now that the A80 is out:duh check www.digideep.com and www.wetpixel.com for more info and links to sites you can buy from.

As for strobes, most of the cheaper cameras don't have hotshoes, but you get around this by using slave strobes, which use the cameras flash to trigger the strobe discharge. I have my eye on the Inon d-180 (think that's it). Anyway, whatever you do, just PICK SOMETHING and get snapping! You'll learn way quiecker than with film and there's nothing like taking two rolls worth of film but having the results straight away and not having to pay for all your dud pix :D 3.2mp should be fine, unless you wanna blow your pix up really large. I have a 256mb card and at full res it gives me space for over a hundred shots and a few video clips :cool: Good luck dude:)

Oh, one more thing, Canon also makes an "All-weather" housing for the powershot cameras. They are waterproof to 5m, but for only a little bit extra you can get the actual dive housing. So when the salesperson tries to flog you one, bounce it off their head and go with the waterproof housing (wp-dcxx) instead...:D

The camera I want is a Fuji FinePix F700 ($349). It is tiny, and the housing ($140) is good for 40m. With a 512MB xD memory card, the camera can also do 7.4 minutes of continuous video at 640x480 (30 frames per second) = camcorder quality. So it doubles as a 6MP camera and a camcorder, in a tiny package.

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
I have just bought a Olympus C5050 with underwater housing for $1350 australian.

That was on the advice of David Harasti who has considerable experience in the photographic field.

The camera was purchased from an online shop (via Ebay) but comes with one year warranty and stuff like that.

I am now in the process of adding a 1Gb microdrive (about $250) so I can store up to 1000 pics during my 7 day liveaboard trip. :)
Shadow, that's what I use - you might want to invest in a 67mm filter for auto color correction. I use an IBM microdrive & I get about 800+ shots at the normal 5 megapixel rating... course I've never gone over 200 on any given day so I'm kind of wasting it.
Originally posted by efattah
The camera I want is a Fuji FinePix F700 ($349). It is tiny, and the housing ($140) is good for 40m. With a 512MB xD memory card, the camera can also do 7.4 minutes of continuous video at 640x480 (30 frames per second) = camcorder quality. So it doubles as a 6MP camera and a camcorder, in a tiny package.

hmm, 7.4 minutes, that's almost one full dive :p
(I wish..)
This is what I've been waiting for, you rarely take longer shots than 5 minutes with a camcorder anyway. 512 mb of memory should be enough for a couple of clips too..

Well well.. I'll wait and see. When I've finally decided wich camera I'll go for, there will always be another better one :)
Or it will be built into my cellphone, so I can send it live over the internet.. with a long antenna of course :)
With my 5050 and my 512mb card I can do 25 minutes of video. I usually only use it in 1-2 minute bursts, as anything longer than that gets to be too boring for my media warped mind.;)

Ted bought the same camera and a 1 gig card, but had to send the card back due to some type of defect.

Another friend of mine also just got the same set-up last week. He paid only $134 for his housing, versus the $295 I paid for mine last Christmas.:(

I got a C5050 as well. Basically I got it because Volodya had one and I liked the photos that it produced -- he really did his homework.

If you set the shots up right, the camera will produce pictures that are of incredible quality and it is sensitive, so you can get decent shots even in murky water when you're pretty far down. However, it takes some skill to get the camera set up for a really good shot. So far, I've had to get by with just luck, so I occasionally get a shot that I really like, but only occasionaly.

Getting a shot set up in the water is a big concentration breaker (at least for me).

The movie format is QuickTime :yack -- unfortunate since I tend to take movies more often than I snap photos. The older Camedias used MPEG, which I would prefer -- and it makes me wonder if there are any firmware hacks available out there ;).

I have a half-Gig card and have yet to fill it up in a day of diving.
For those of you green water divers that use the 5050, consider getting a FL-D Singh-Ray filter from bhphoto - it really helped out.
Fuzz, I asked my buddy where he found the deal on hte housing and this was his reply:

I bought the housing from newegg.com for 134.00. I bought the camera from
amazon.com for 570. plus 30.00 off for signing up for their credit card plus
a 50.00 Amazon gift card for a future purchase. I just checked their website
and the new ones are 685.00. Adorama.com has them listed for 579.00 but they
are backordered right now. BHphoto.com has them listed for 579.00 also and
it looks like they have them in stock.

That filter that you mentioned, will it work if you are already using an Inon add-on lens?

Not 100% if it would work with a WAL, but I think it should.

Darn tax in California, sweet deal at Newegg - wouldn't have thought to check there ;)

I know what you mean about the housing costs - I bought my last housing beore the pt-015 from Japan directly :(
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