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Many of the devices we carry can take good pictures now, but not many of them fare so well in rougher climates. Finding the best waterproof camera to produce quality pictures can be quite a challenge; requires risking good photos if the camera does not hold up its end of the deal.
To help narrow down the options and give suggestions for what to look for, we reviewed ten underwater cameras. So keep reading if you would like some help in knowing what to search for and what to avoid when trying to find the best waterproof camera.
Waterproof cameras need to be extremely well-built to resist water. Often this can make them bulky or heavy, which can compromise photo quality and creative shot options. When looking for a waterproof camera, it is essential to know what you are compromising regarding camera features. Ideally, the best waterproof camera would not sacrifice the specs that build up quality photos.
What Is a Waterproof Camera?
A waterproof camera is built for underwater landscape and subject shots. It closes off entry points to the camera’s internal system, which protects the camera and your pictures. It sounds simple, but the design and execution of the camera are crucial to its success as the best waterproof camera.
Why Use a Waterproof Camera?
This type of camera is ideal for snorkeling, seascapes, and creative underwater shots. There is a world of new creative possibilities under water, but many advanced cameras cannot survive with contact with water. Many high-tech models have some water or tumble resistance, but neither of those allows underwater shots.
If you are thinking of traveling through tropical beaches, or just want to try some cool shots in the pool, the only way to even experiment with this section of photography is to grab a waterproof camera.
Some Things to Consider
Know what you want to do with this camera. Is it going to be used only for water shots or as your default camera option as well? If you are just looking for an underwater option, the quality of the specs may not be as crucial as they would be if you needed the camera for other shooting options.
Do you need this camera to be intended for rugged use? Just because they are waterproof does not mean that they can survive a fall or extreme temperatures. While many rugged cameras are also waterproof, keep in mind that unless specified they are not meant for other extreme areas. Finally, do you intend to use video underwater? If so, make sure you get good video quality and high frames per second.
How We Reviewed
Image from Amazon
These ten models were reviewed based on the following parameters: Features, Pros & Cons, Price, Where to Buy, and Warranty. We found that covering these five criteria organizes the information we felt was important to know before purchasing a camera. As this type of technology tends to be expensive, we wanted to be sure we had criteria that would uncover essential features and things to consider when deciding on a waterproof camera, and how to determine the best waterproof camera for you.
Overall Price Range of Waterproof Cameras
Generally, we found that budgeting around $500 would cover most cameras. Of course, the more you spend, the better specs you get typically, so it is essential to know what you are looking for as you look through these to find the best waterproof camera.
What We Reviewed
- Ultra HD 4K Action Camera- Sony IMX078 sensor records 4K/24FPS 2K/30FPS 1080P/60FPS 720/120FPS video and 12MP photos. Different scenarios and different patterns, make more wonderful photos, more rich videos
- 12.4MP Sensor Wide Angle Lens - Adjustable FOV, Distortion Correction and RAW. You can capture high-quality photos for post-production editing in your sports action camera
- 170 Degree Wide Dynamic Range (WDR) - Full HD resolution recording at 1920×1080 which allows you to Capture warm and vivid Picturesque scenes even underwater with the waterproof camera
- Gyro Stabilization Function - SJ5000X Elite 4k sports camera Makes photos and videos faster and stable, shoot clear pictures, Sports fans can start this function, even in sports, you can take clear pictures and videos.Enjoy Sports together
- Built-in WIFI- Edit & share freely in minutes, SJCAM Zone App allows you to control SJ5000x Elite WiFi action camera with the touch of your phone.Instantly send photos and videos Via SJCAM APP share them on social media easily
The 4k waterproof camera options SJCam offers are many. They each have slightly different specs, but on average, they are a more rugged type of camera used for action shots and video. They are compact and come with a sturdy waterproof case. They can be up to 30 meters below and has Gyro stabilization for videos, which they shoot in 4k.
Megapixels range from 12 to 16, and the battery life varies as well between 90 minutes to 2 hours. They have a handful of shooting options like slow motion mode, burst mode, underwater mode, and car mode which brings some added diversity to the use of the camera.
Given the features, this would make an excellent camera for adventure videography, but not a great option for photography in general. It’s a decent option for underwater photography, though not the best waterproof camera.
SJCam warranties their products for seven days. They also charge fees for part replacement and working with third parties (if you buy from another store).
- Super 4K Action Camera: Campark 4K sports action camera records video footage in 4K/30fps and takes photo at 16M, help you capture and share your world in a fantastic resolution.
- 170 Degree Optional Wide Angle Lens: This gopro type camera features 2 inch HD screen and 170 adjustable angle lens, giving you a different visual experience. You won't miss out on any background details.
- Wi-fi Remote Control: The sports camera allows you control camera via the phone in real time, instantly share pics and videos on social media.(Compatible with iOS and Android System)
- Waterproof up to 30M(100FT) Depth: With the included waterproof case, this underwater camera allows you to dive up to 30M (100ft) in depth. Ideal for water sports like swimming, drifting, surfing etc.
- Accessories Kits with Two Batteries: Comes with dual rechargeable batteries and multifunctional accessories (most are compatible with gopro cameras), enable you to mount your camera to helmet, bicycles, wrist, etc.
Campark also offers a lot of options as well, especially regarding video. On average, their photo quality hovers around 12 megapixels, and they have a 170-degree swivel on their base to allow for a range of angles. The video is 2.7K to 4K, and they are waterproof to 30 meters down. All options offer Wi-fi and Bluetooth connectivity, and many offer rechargeable batteries, wrist remotes, and all-inclusive packaging.
It is hard to ignore the hard focus Campark has put on the video aspect of these models. It is evident that video is where these cameras thrive—whether underwater or not. Regarding photo taking though, the 12-megapixel average may not be what you are looking for.
There is a 30-day warranty that allows you to return the product for any reason.
- New 12 MegaPixel Hi speed image sensor for improved low light performance and noise reduction
- Underwater Compensation: 2 EV to +2 EV (in 1/3 EV steps); Bright F2.0 high speed Lens; Video Recording format : MOV(MPEG 4AVC/H.264)
- Dual Quad Core TruePic VIII Image Processor 3.0 inches 460k Dot LCD Monitor; Focus Range Normal: 3.94 inches (10 centimeter) to Infinit Macro: 0.4 inches (1 centimeter) to Infinity
- Field sensor system with GPS, Manometer, Compass, and temperature sensors
- Waterproof to 50 feet, F, Dust proof, Crush proof to 220 lbf, Shockproof from 7 feet, Freeze proof to 14 degrees, Anti Fog lens, Dust proof: IP6X
These models can go 15 meters down, and while the previous models have been more of a Go-Pro type of build, these look and function more like a camera. Olympus offers interchangeable lenses as well to bolster the image quality and creativity. Their Rough line can handle temperatures as cold as 14 degrees (F), provide 12 megapixels and extreme durability along with being waterproof, crush proof, dustproof, and shockproof. It has 4K video at 30fps and 120fps high-speed video.
The Olympus waterproof cameras are an adrenaline junkies’ dream for capturing the high-thrill, high-adventure moment in snapshots or video. While the megapixels are not incredible, the ability to swap out lenses and use creative shooting functions does make this feel like both a camera and video camera and keeps it in the running for the best waterproof camera.
There is a 90-day to 12-month warranty period depending on the product. This will not cover things like wear and tear or misuse.
- FULL HD VIDEO AND PHOTO RESOLUTION - 12MP 1080P ensures you capture high quality pictures and videos every time. The 170° wide-angle lens allows you to capture more of your surroundings.
- 30 METERS WATERPROOF PERFORMANCE - With the solid and durable waterproof case, you can dive into water up to 98 feet / 30 meters. Perfect for water sports, such as swimming, diving, surfing and so on. You can explore the unknown underwater world.
- WIRELESS REMOTE CONTROL CONNECTION - With Wi Fi you can connect your phone to directly operate the camera and video options using the “iSmart DV” APP. Besides, you can download, delete and view files.
- 2 RECHARGEABLE HIGH-CAPACITY BATTERIES - The camera includes two rechargeable 1050mAh batteries to ensure you always have power during the happy times with your family and friends in a short time. You will never miss any precious moments.
- 2” LCD AND MOUNTING ACCESSORY KITS - A 2” LCD screen allows you to view videos or pictures more clearly. 18 multifunctional accessories enable you to mount your camera to helmet, bicycles, wrist, etc. Great companion to shoot the exciting moment.
These models offer 12 megapixels and 1080p HD video quality. They are waterproof for 30 meters and have Wi-fi capabilities. They are built for action, so the wide-angle sports lens they feature is no surprise and a smart spec. It comes with 18 various accessories for mounting and framing as well.
While the depth level is excellent for these cameras, they do not stand out as amazing in either photography or videography—though they may be a great beginners’ option.
Crosstour has a 1-year warranty.
- UPGRADE SERIES OF AKASO EK7000: Featuring 4K/24fps, 2K/30fps and 1080P/60FPS video resolution and 20MP photos, AKASO Brave 4 action camera enables you to take incredible photos and ultra HD videos, clearly recording the beauty and wonders in life!
- OPTIONAL VIEW ANGLE AND ANTI-SHAKING: Adjust the view angle of this action camera according to your needs between 170°, 140°, 110°, and 70°. Built in smart gyroscope for anti-shaking and image stabilization to make your video much more smooth.
- SPORTS CAMERA WITH WIFI AND HDMI: Sharing & editing videos from an action camera is easier with the free app. Just download the App on your phone or tablet and connect with this action camera. Wi-Fi signal ranges up to 10 meters. With HDMI Port allows you to connect it with television.
- 100FT WATERPROOF CAMERA AND 2'' IPS SCREEN: Place your action camera into the waterproof case and securely fasten it, then you can dive below 30 meters. This underwater camera is ideal for water sports such as swimming, surfing, diving, etc. 2'' IPS screen allows you to preview the video in action camera.
- FREE VALUABLE ACCESSORIES: This underwater camera comes with 2 rechargeable 1050mAh batteries, remote control wristband and 19 accessories kit, the kits are available for most kinds of camera even Gopro. Each battery can record up to 90 minutes. The remote wristband is not waterproof.
These models offer 16 megapixels with 4K video quality. They can go to 30 meters in depth (with case) and have an average battery life of 90 minutes. It offers a few different shooting options like time lapse, video lapse, and diving mode has Gryo sensing and has Wi-fi connectivity. There are options with and without screens as well as voice control.
Given the specs, these models may work well in both photo and video areas, though they are not significantly spectacular in either.
Their base warranty is undisclosed, but they do offer a 1-year extended warranty that many people tend to take.
- Perfect gift: compact design is perfect and the lanyard helps carry it all around without sinking or falling while take photo/video. This waterproof camera is built tough for your active lifestyle. It's dust proof, the perfect travel companion, Ready to capture all your adventures and fun selfies even under water. Rugged, compact, and lightweight, it goes anywhere and can handle every challenging journey, from the bumpiest, dustiest desert road tour to underwater selfies.
- Underwater digital camera: submersible up to 10 feet in depth Waterproof without casing for one hour per time. Photo Shooting and video recording underwater. Max. 24 MP, and 14 kinds of optional resolutions. Built-in LED flash light.
- Shoot high-quality photos and video, with or without audio, whenever and wherever your travels take you. Snap beautiful still images at 24MP, 20MP, 18MP, 16MP, 14MP, 12MP, 10MP, 8MP, 7M, 5MP, 3MP, or 2MP. Capture smooth digital Video at either 1920 x 1080 (full HD). save your images and video onto a micro SD card up to 32GB (not included) or transfer them via the built-in USB port.
- This waterproof digital camera features a rear-facing, 2.7-Inch full-color LCD display and a secondary, front-facing 1.8-Inch full-color LCD display – The perfect viewfinder for taking selfies. With its built-in 10-second self-timer, you can get yourself along with the whole gang in the same frame, and never miss a moment of action.
- 5. : we offer One year and money-back . Customer service will be provided within 24 hours in working day. If you have any problem, just
This model boasts 24 megapixels and offers 1080p HD video. It works like a point and shoot, or SLR, camera. It has a dual screen, and it built for wear and tear. It has a 16x zoom and rechargeable batteries as well.
The megapixels on this camera are great, but the lack of other unique specs definitely on this model’s chances at being the best underwater camera. This may be a better option for a children’s camera.
There is a 1-year warranty and 24/7 support offered.
- 4K ACTION CAMERA with 4X ZOOM: Professional 4K/30FPS, 2.7K/30fps, 1080P/60FPS video and 16MP photo resolution enables you to capture exciting moment for you. This action camera also features zoom range from 1.0X to 4.0X.
- WIRELESS WRIST REMOTE CONTROL: Put the remote control on your wrist while installing the sports camera on your helmet, convenient to record moments in places you can't reach. Wireless range up to 10m(33ft), the remote is not waterproof.
- WIFI ACTION CAMERA with 2" SCREEN: Save and share your sports action camera moments on the phone/tablet with App XDV, WiFi signal ranges up to 33 feet. 2'' screen allows you to preview the video in action camera.
- 100FT WATERPROOF CAMERA with FREE ACCESSORIES: Place your camera into the waterproof case and securely fasten it, you can dive below 30 meters. This underwater camera is ideal for water sports such as swimming, surfing, diving, etc. This underwater camera also comes with 2 rechargeable 1050mAh batteries, charger and accessories which available for most action camera even Gopro.
- VERSATILE BUT COMPACT: This action camera features multiple functions including driving mode, image rotation, time-lapse, loop recording, slow motion, dramashot, exposure and white balance. Bringing this sports camera to more applicable conditions beyond your expectation. This action camera is not Mac compatible.
This model features 16 megapixels and 4K video at 30fps. It includes a wireless wrist remote and Wi-fi abilities and can go down to 100 feet (with case). It comes with all the accessories you need to get started as well and has a few shooting options like driving mode, drama shot, timelapse, and exposure and white balance. This camera works well in both photos as videos regarding action shots, and it offers some excellent shooting modes for those wanting to explore photography.
This model offers 24 megapixels and 1080p video quality. It is waterproof up to 3 meters and has a variety of shooting modes and adjustments. It is dual-screened and is remarkably easy to use.
The megapixels are high, but the lack of depth for the waterproof option may take it out of the running for the best waterproof camera. The variety of shooting options does mean that it works well above water though so that it may be a good camera with water options instead of a waterproof camera.
A 1-year warranty is provided, as well as 24/7 support.
- Waterproof, freeze proof, shockproof and dustproof adventure camera with extra capabilities;Autofocus (AF) : Contrast-detect AF
- Stunning high resolution photos, 4K Ultra HD videos, Time-lapse videos, Super lapse videos and music montages
- 5x optical zoom NIKKOR lens with telephoto power and Hybrid VR image stabilization; Charging Time:2 hours 20 minutes (when using Charging AC Adapter EH-73P and when no charge remains)(Approx.)
- Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, eCompass, altimeter, depth gauge and more.Lens Construction:12 elements in 10 groups
This camera is not only waterproof but also freezeproof, dustproof, and shockproof. It shoots 4K video with a variety of options and has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, eCompass, altimeter, and a depth gauge—making it an excellent adventuring camera. It is waterproof till 100 feet and shoots 16-megapixel images with a 5x optical zoom. Despite its standard megapixel amount, this camera has some specs that we felt put it in the running for the best waterproof camera.
There is a 1-year warranty for bugs or manufacturer errors.
- 4 Way Proof - Waterproof 50 ft / 15m, Freeze proof 14 Degree F / -10 DegreeC, Shockproof 5.8 ft / 1.75m and Dustproof.
- 16.2 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor delivershigh-quality images in low light.
- Continuous shooting mode is capable of capturing up to 10.0fps (maximumrecording of 10 images at full resolution).
- Full HD Movies with one-touch movie button.
- Connect to your smartphone or tablet for extra enjoyment for Remote Shooting and Wireless Image Transfer.
These models are waterproof to 50 feet, shockproof, freeze proof, and dustproof. It shoots 1080p HD video and has 16 megapixels. It utilizes Wi-fi connectivity and remote operations and can shoot ten frames per second. These models seem to be a good option for the newly acquainted adventurer. They are durable, but not highly qualified in any specific area.
Fujifilm has a 1-year limited warranty.
The Verdict: The Best Waterproof Camera
In our reviews, we found that each model typically offered a unique feature that appeals to different buys. For that reason, we will decide our verdict based on the various reasons a waterproof camera may be used, and what would make them the best waterproof camera.
First, for simple underwater shots at the pool or snorkeling, any of these options would work. However, if you are looking for a simple camera that is less expensive than its more complex competitors, we would recommend the COMI, the Dragon Touch, or the Crosstour Action camera. Any of these options will be on the lower price range but still, offer basic if not above basic underwater video and standard photo shooting underwater.
If you want something to work between a standard camera and an underwater camera, we recommend the Nikon W300 for the higher end option and the COMI as the more affordable option. Both do well as basic cameras and have features to aid in underwater shooting as well—and the video abilities are decent too. Both of these will offer more shooting options than the others as well, which is closer to a regular camera.
If you are looking through these strictly for excellent video quality, we recommend the Dragon Touch for the most affordable option, as its video quality works well for a variety of settings. On the opposite end of the spectrum, we also recommend the Olympus, as it gives the most freedom for video (and photo) shooting.