A Guide to Waterproof Point-and-Shoot Cameras

Want to capture photos is places that would harm your normal camera?

Get yourself a waterproof camera...

  • Waterproof cameras are hard cameras with touch exteriors that won't break under the normal wear and tear that would write off other cameras or smartphone lenses.
  • They don’t need protective cases and are small enough to fit in a shirt pocket or backpack pouch
  • Waterproof Cameras are sophisticated auto focus, auto exposure, point and shoot cameras with video capability.
  • Waterproof Cameras are tough! Weatherproof, waterproof and crushproof, they can survive being dropped onto rocks, buried in mud, or dropped into streams.
  • Waterproof Cameras can function in rain, snow and sandstorms and withstand extremes of hot and cold temperatures.
  • Waterproof Cameras have optical zooms – the majority zoom (optically) from about 24mm to 100mm (35mm equivalent).  The reason for smaller zooms is that tough cameras feature an internal zoom mechanism, so it doesn’t actually extend or retract, as on your typical lens.
  • Most Waterproof Cameras have macro and even micro lens settings for extreme close-ups.
  • Waterproof Cameras can handle a wide latitude of varying exposure situations with automatic (and semi auto) settings
  • The fun doesn't stop there, as you'll also find many waterproof cameras come packed with features such as GPS location tagging, Wi-Fi connectivity and even action-orientated extras like a compass or altimeter.
  • Waterproof cameras are perfect for those who take action photography to heart, whether that's for tramping through the bush to filming on the beach, a waterproof camera should provide enough water protection to survive being submerged or splash damage.
  • For some people, an action camera like a GoPro or Olympus Tough Action might be better than a more traditional style of camera. These are smaller but are designed as “point of view” cameras with wide lenses and almost no zoom ability.

What to look for in a waterproof camera

  • How waterproof is the camera. A good standard is around 10m of depth protection, but most of these cameras provide even more – you pay more for cameras that go deeper so think about what you will be using it for.
  • How big a drop can the camera withstand - most waterproof cameras will have a shock-proof standard - the height or weight they can withstand.
  • Many other features apply to waterproof cameras like all cameras. Aperture size, megapixels and zoom are all points to look out for, while battery life remains important if you want to get plenty of recording time on for video.
  • More expensive cameras will also have added features like 4K footage, which adds to the price. Panasonic’s FT7 also has an electronic viewfinder – great for those that have trouble seeing screens in sunlight.
  • A couple of models have a microscope mode where the macro photography is assisted by lighting around the lens – LED lights for the Ricoh and the optional Lighting Guide for the Olympus.


Check out our selection of waterproof cameras

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