10 Best Underwater Cameras 2018

How often has it happened that you’re holidaying on a beach (or out for underwater adventure) and leave your camera behind, fearing dropping it in water? We have put together this article to make sure you no longer miss out on your under water memories.

An underwater camera should have the right mix of portability, utility and price. To top it all, it should serve your purpose without you having to pay through the roof for it. We have put together a list of best underwater cameras and reviewed top five to save you the effort and time.

Top 10 Underwater Cameras Table

PictureNameMegaPixelPriceRating (1-5)
PictureNameMegaPixelPriceRating (1-5)
1. Smarson WIFI HD Digital Action Sports Camera12$4.7
2. GoPro HERO4 Silver12$$$$4.5
3. DBPOWER EX5000 14MP 2.0-Inch 1080P FHD Waterproof Wifi Action Camera14$4.3
4. Nikon COOLPIX AW130 Waterproof Digital Camera16$$$4.2
5. Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5A 16.1 MP Tough Digital Camera16.1$$$4.2
6. Olympus TG-4 16 MP Waterproof Digital Camera16$$$$4.1
7. DBPOWER Waterproof Action Camera 12MP 1080P HD12$4.1
8. Fujifilm FinePix XP80 Waterproof Digital Camera16.2$$4.1
9. Fujifilm FinePix XP90 Waterproof digital camera16.4$$4.0
10. Nikon COOLPIX S33 Waterproof Digital Camera13.2$$4.0

Buying Information

Before you start checking out underwater cameras, it will help if you have a clear picture of your requirements. It will save you time and regret of ending up with the wrong product. Here are a few tips to be kept in mind:

  • Primary Use. Will you be recording videos or shooting images under water? This will help you focus on the exact category without wasting time on researching the wrong one.
  • Megapixels (More Is Not Always Better). Unless you are planning on printing posters, a 12 MP camera would perform just as well as one with a higher number. Save yourself some money and focus on the product that serves your purpose well rather than one with high end specifications and features that you would never use.
  • Exposure. Auto exposure is a good place to start for a beginner; however, if you have tried those out before and plan to take your photography a notch higher in the future, manual exposure options should be considered – not before you learn all about ISOs and exposure compensation settings.
  • Feedback Displays. If your budget allows, it is good to have instant feedback in the form of highlight warning and histogram. This way, you know when the light is too low or too bright and don’t end up in a situation where you regret not knowing over/under exposed images in time.

Top 5 Best Underwater Camera Reviews

1. Smarson WIFI HD Digital Action Sports Camera

If you’re looking for a reasonably priced camera to capture your adventure, Smarson action sports camera is the best underwater camera out there. This Wi-Fi enabled 12 Mega Pixel device comes packed with a full HD 1080p display, 170 degree wide angle lens and 30 m water resistance. It can be paired wirelessly with your iOS or Android powered smart devices via its built in iSmartDV App. A 1.5” TFT LCD display at the back comes in handy while setting up the camera, shooting and playback.

On unboxing, a compact camera housed safely inside the waterproof case welcomes you. It makes it easy to transport or mount anywhere, making it equally useful for serving the purpose of a security camera. A 900mAh battery provides enough juice for it to last 60-90 minutes.

To summarize, if you are looking for a multipurpose camera for shooting casual videos without spending hundreds of dollars, there is no reason to look beyond this one. Only thing you need to think about is that it won’t get you 4k quality videos and long hours of continuous use. Despite these factors, we highly recommend it, given its price tag.

2. GoPro HERO4 Silver

Here is a bestselling beast that has all the features you would want in an underwater camera. If you are looking for a professional grade, feature laden camera to capture cinema-quality videos, GoPro Hero4 beats competition hands down. It is meant to shoot fast moving, action packed videos and does it really well, whether you shoot 1080p60 or 720p120 videos. The 12 MP snapper works great and is tuned to capture great photos at an astonishing 30 frames per second.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support have been built in, which comes handy when you operate it with the GoPro app. It comes with a host of useful accessories and mounts, making it easy to set up. First launched in 2014, it is still a solid performer, though you might want to have a look at the newer model GoPro Hero5 Black.

3. DBPOWER EX5000 Waterproof Wifi Action Camera

If you are looking for an inexpensive, dedicated sports action camera with wide angle coverage and fast, accurate motion capture, DBPower EX5000 is screaming for your attention! It comes with two rechargeable batteries that extend the recording time up to three hours. It ships with all the useful accessories that are often missing in cameras of this price range (waterproof case, clip, multi – function clip, bicycle mount, camera clip, helmet mount, belts, wiper, stickers, USB cable and rechargeable batteries).

At 14 MP and 1080p Full HD display resolution, it is on the higher end of the spec sheet range. You can slide in a TF card of up to 32 GB storage to record 8 hours of 720p (or 5 hours of 1080p) videos. A 2.0 inch TFT touchscreen display means you can playback skiing, diving, biking, riding and driving videos instantly!

For the price, it is a real steal, especially if you are looking for cameras with longer battery life than the Smarson reviewed earlier in the article.

4. Nikon COOLPIX AW130 Waterproof Digital Camera

If you are an adventure junkie looking for a camera that is equally tough, Nikon Coolpix AW130 is an eligible companion. Waterproof, shockproof and freeze-proof capabilities make it a true all terrain camera that performs equally well on land and water. With built in Wi-Fi, NFC, GPS, mapping and point of interest features, it is tuned for the dedicated traveler who likes to shoot memories and share them on the go.

A wide angle (24 mm) NIKKOR lens makes for wide coverage – perfect for underwater and action shooting. Rechargeable batteries, 5X optical zoom, Hybrid Vibration Reduction and built in flash complete a set of useful features – simple to explore through a 3- inch touchscreen.

Available for a relatively high price, it is a must have if you travel a lot and are looking for a snapper that can take low light images, geo-tag them and transfer them wirelessly to your smart devices instantly.

5. Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5A Tough Digital Camera

This one is another smart product out of the Panasonic stable. Other than the regular features (GPS, Wi-Fi, rugged) that you would expect from a camera at this price, it offers a lot more that makes it an attractive alternative. Power Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) is a feature that outdoor photographers would love. It comes with intelligent auto mode that springs to action in the background, meaning all you have to do is to just point and shoot to get the best shot.

We especially liked the Creative Control (for recording mode) and Creative Retouch (for playback mode) functions that can be used on scenes to get great photographs. Throw in a quad (altimeter, barometer, depth indicator and compass) indicator and you have the perfect companion to cover your adventures.

There is a newer version available – the Panasonic Lumix DCM-TS6A – but based on average customer feedback, this one is still a great choice.

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