Taking photos underwater

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Fable, Feb 21, 2006.

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  1. Fable

    Fable Well-Known Member

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    I am going scuba diving soon, and I'd love to take a camera down with me.

    Firstly, can any digital cameras handle the pressure?
    I will only be going 3-4 feet under water maximum.

    I assume I would also need some kind of casing for protection too?
     
  2. Ben Stafford

    Ben Stafford Site Admin

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    If you're only going a few feet down, cameras like the Pentax Optio WPi will work. It's rated to be waterproof down to 5 feet for 30 minutes at a time.

    If you don't want to get another camera, you can probably find an underwater housing that will let you take your camera to much greater depths. The downside is that the housings are pretty expensive.

    There may be cheaper options out there.
     
  3. Josh Dollins

    Josh Dollins News/Review Writer News/Review Writer

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    I once thought about getting a housing for my stylus 400 and it was nearly as much as the camera had cost me!
     
  4. Ben Stafford

    Ben Stafford Site Admin

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    Yeah, unless you're "into" underwater photography, justifying the cost of a full-blown underwater housing is pretty difficult.
     
  5. Wail

    Wail Well-Known Member

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    Fable,

    No offence meant, but going down to only 3 ~ 4 feet hardly requires you any scuba diving skills! So, you really don’t need anything special other than the off-the-shelf under-water cameras. I would suggest one of these, since the light at the depth you’ve suggested is good, and as you are new to this you don’t need to spend so much on a special housing for your digital camera.

    If you are planning to do some underwater photography, while scuba diving, then I would suggest you keep practicing with a small camera first (as suggested above) – something that can go down to 30 feet at a very cheap price can be found. After you see if you like it or not, there are many issues of concern with underwater photography that you would only realise after you have dipped yourself into it – then think of getting a dedicated housing for your digital cam (as these are expensive), or you can just go and get one of the dedicated underwater cameras like the Nikos.
     
  6. Wail

    Wail Well-Known Member

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    A couple more things to keep in mind, as you are starting diving new, I would strongly suggest that you stick with diving for a while to get the real pleasure of it and to practice your skills to finer tune. Not to under estimate your skills at all, but diving is a very risky sport if not monitored carefully – remember you have a buddy to keep an eye on, plus all your equipments, air supply, depth, and current, to name a few issues.

    Another suggestion is to try and take an underwater photography course BEFORE you go out and buy yourself any underwater equipment; you may well find yourself loving to dive, and loving to take pictures, but hating to do the two at the same time.
     
  7. Jessica

    Jessica Well-Known Member

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    Wail, you can scuba dive 3-4 feet.
    Its when you dive just to see some fish near the surface, its different to deep water diving.
     
  8. Wail

    Wail Well-Known Member

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    Jessica,

    I am sure one can scuba dive at that depth, but I have never known a person to do that ... just use a snorkle instead since visibility to 3~4 from the surface is usually excellent. But as you've said, one can do it.
     
  9. Fable

    Fable Well-Known Member

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    AH yes great idea there. I wont be using the camera straight away or all the time, but I'd like to try it once or twice.

    Thanks for the advice everyone, we will see how it goes and i will try to get some photos posted here.
     
  10. Wail

    Wail Well-Known Member

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    Excellent pictures J. K. I especially love the one of the moray eel. Have had a few close encounters with them.

    Nikonos is an excellent camera, I only wish that they would make a digital version.
     
  11. Wail

    Wail Well-Known Member

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    Eventually I may well upgrade to the D200 (or whatever is out in it's place at the time) and then I may use my D70 (with housing) for underwater photography. For now, however, I may look for something more compact for that since I have never picked up underwater photography even though I have been in to both diving and photography for close to 20 years now!

    Any suggestions on what is a good digital compact camera to use, and what housing / casing should I be looking at?
     
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