View Full Version : Water Proof Camera for Snorkeling

02/13/2017, 07:54 AM
Hello, Im in the market for a affordable point and shoot style camera that I can take snorkeling. Looking for something that will be able to go to depths of say 30' and still function. I have my Go Pro, but the wife is wanting to carry something as well. What is recommended?

02/13/2017, 02:33 PM
Several reefs here in RC did mention that they used underwater point and shoot camera for their macro corals pictures. One that is highly recommended is Olympic Tg-4. It is about $380. In fact one actually admitted that he now exclusively uses this instead of DSLR. It is good for up to 50 ft of depth.

02/13/2017, 02:53 PM
I have borrowed a friend's Olympus TG4 to take on a couple of trips where snorkeling is involved. I spent a week on St John with that camera hanging from my wrist. It takes great pics for a point and shoot camera either in or out of the water. It will also do video. I've got some great video of a parrot fish crunching on some coral. It's sensitive enough to pick up the grinding sound from 15ft away.

I've also got a great panoramic pic of Cruz bay from the top of the island. So, it's not just a good underwater camera.

That was about 5 years ago and the camera was a couple years old at that point. I'm sure the newer models have some nicer bells & whistles that the one I used didn't.

If you're up for spending around $375, it's a great option.

02/13/2017, 03:05 PM
Go pro works too

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02/15/2017, 03:24 AM
Go pro is the best I've found. I set mine to time lapse at 2 second intervals, put it on a 1" dowel and shoot away. These were taken with my 4 Silver and cleaned up in Lightroom.




02/15/2017, 07:34 PM
Thanks for the responses. I'll take a look into that TG4, but if I can get pics like above from my GoPro I think I would be pretty happy.

As for the GoPro. I used it on my last trip and just had it set to video and narrow angle. I would love to be able to get pictures like above from it. Its very tedious going thru 2 hours of video to try to get what you want off of it. Not to mention, I just have to figure out how to use all the settings on it. My videos never look like the ones Go Pro has on there site...

Cody, do you use the Red filter on your GoPro???

02/18/2017, 02:45 AM
I think a red filter would be better for SCUBA, but is not necessary for snorkeling. I bought one for shallow depths and it was still too much for water no deeper than 20 feet.

As for the quality of the pics, realize that I cleaned them up in Lightroom. The visibility when I shot the sea turtle was terrible. I'm shocked that I was able to clear up as much as I did. The sting ray was shot in clear water at about 3 feet, and the last pic was in very clear water at about 5 feet.

As for going through a finding what you like, I don't use video much on mine, so it's easier. I shoot in time lapse mode, with a photo every 2 seconds. I end up deleting A LOT of pics, but it helps get what I want. I keep the camera on a 2-3' dowel, which lets me get up close to my subjects. I shoot with protune on and get as close as I can. I do find that the lens is a little wide a lot of the time, but it's a good trade off for the rest of the camera's capabilities.

02/18/2017, 07:49 AM
Cody, thanks again for the explanation.

Last time I went I had the floating stick. I found that I had trouble, for one being very shaky and two not getting the subject exactly in frame. So I picked up some action goggles that gives the GoPro a POV shot instead. Im curious however. How did you mount the it to the dowel? Could you post a pic of that please. I like the idea that the dowel still floats and its longer to help get closer.

I also spent some time going thru the settings on mine. I see the time lapse setting has a lot of different shots. For example 5 pics/2 sec, 10 pics/2 sec, 30 pics/2sec. Could you help me out and let me know which one.. I can imagine if I had it on 30/2, I could have a heck of a lot of pics for a 4 hour snorkel. So Im assuming you just had it on the minimal one???

The other question I wanted to ask is the White Balance. I know in Pro Tune you can select which color spectrum you want, do you just leave it in auto?

Thanks again.

02/18/2017, 04:32 PM
I love my Olympus TG4; takes great photos (and video) underwater while snorkeling, and is waterproof to 50 feet. I even have a housing on it to take it down deeper than that when diving. It's a lovely camera, and not that expensive for when you get. Bonus: it can shoot RAW, if you care about that sort of thing.

02/19/2017, 04:36 AM
For the dowel, I cut a flat spot on it, then screwed on another 1x2 to elevate the camera above the surface of the dowel so it pivots freely. I just used a standard mount with tape to hold the camera on. I'll try to remember to get a pic. A simple 1x2 would have the same effect. I just used what I had in the garage at the time. I put a little wrist strap on the end so I don't lose it.

I set time lapse to shoot every 2 seconds. I have a lot of pics to delete (probably 2k in the last 2 trips out), but it helps get the ones I like. I don't let it run the WHOLE time either. If things aren't interesting, I stop the camera. As soon as I see something that may be cool, I let it run until I'm sure all the good stuff is gone. I don't like missing cool shots, even if they turn out crappy in the end. At least I know i tried, haha. As for shake and framing, that still is true with mine. Video is much more challenging on the stick. Getting the right frame just takes practice.
Don't confuse burst with time lapse. You want the one with the camera and the clock icon. I missed some good shots by not noticing that.

I use auto white balance. It works well enough, especially with lightroom.

02/19/2017, 06:01 AM
We took a look at the TG4 yesterday. Looks like a very nice camera. One question about it though, as its hard to tell in a store. Hows the zoom capability on it? Will you be able to zoom in to capture an animal in a tree from a boat lets just say up to 500' away and still make out what it is your looking at for example? We are definitely interested in this camera, or the next model when it comes out. We just cant buy it now.

Cody, thanks for the idea on the dowel and how to make it. I have a good idea of what your talking about now. I agree with not letting it run the whole time. We only have 1 battery, but really should have a couple of them. Hell we have 4 memory cards for it. LOL

Thanks again everyone for the input and help!

03/03/2017, 04:11 PM
I took this with a HD Hero2 with a dive housing. Trick with making good underwater video on the gopro is not to go full res but bump the fps. This was a screenshot of a vid at 60fps and 720p. I was diving and had a red filter on but it works great without a filter in less than 20ft of water. Holding the camera steady on the surface is tricky. The photo every 2 seconds is a good trick as well! No post processing.