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Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling

Updated on December 26, 2013

Waterproof Cameras for Snorkeling Are Great for Other Sports, Too

Not that long ago, taking pictures underwater required a very expensive camera made to go in the water or a very expensive housing for cameras that weren't originally designed to be used in water. No longer!

Waterproof cameras for snorkeling are now affordable for virtually any budget and available with a wide range of features. You can get everything from a one-time-use underwater film camera to a waterproof digital camera that is also shockproof, dustproof and freezeproof. Now everyone can take great photos on their beach vacation!

Here are some of the top-rated and most popular underwater cameras for snorkeling and some tips for using your new camera underwater.

(Photo: © Dmitriy Melnikov |

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 - A Popular Camera for Snorkeling

Panasonic's Lumix DMC-TS5 comes in several colors and is one of the most popular underwater camera for snorkeling and other sports on Amazon as of this writing. It's waterproof, shockproof, dustproof, freezeproof and takes HD video. This camera is great for virtually any sport or everyday use.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 16.1 MP Tough Digital Camera with 9.3x Intelligent Zoom (Orange) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 16.1 MP Tough Digital Camera with 9.3x Intelligent Zoom (Orange) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)


- 4 Active Outdoor Scene Modes: The DMC-TS3 has 4 active outdoor Scene Modes - Sports, Snow, Beach & Snorkeling and Underwater

- LEICA DC Lens with Folded Optics Technology: The DMC-TS3 features a high-quality LEICA DC VARIO-ELMAR 28mm wide-angle lens

- 28mm Wide-angle Lens: The 28mm wide-angle lens lets you easily capture large groups of people indoors

- Newly Developed 12.1-megapixel Hi-speed CCD: The newly developed 12.1-megapixel CCD with 2-channel signal output structure

- Sonic Speed AF: The Sonic Speed AF system includes numerous re-engineering enhancements


The Best-Rated Underwater Camera for Snorkeling - Rated 4 out of 5 stars

With nearly 275 customer reviews, the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-TX10 is currently the best-rated waterproof camera on Amazon, with an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars. Like the waterproof Panasonic camera above, this Sony Cyber-Shot is also waterproof, shockproof, dustproof, freezeproof and able to shoot HD video. It also offers 3-D and panoramic imaging features.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-TX10 16.2 MP Waterproof Digital Still Camera with Exmor R CMOS Sensor, 3D Sweep Panorama, and Full HD 1080/60i Video (Blue)
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-TX10 16.2 MP Waterproof Digital Still Camera with Exmor R CMOS Sensor, 3D Sweep Panorama, and Full HD 1080/60i Video (Blue)


- Certified waterproof, dustproof, shockproof and freeze-proof

- 3.0 Touch screen for easy focus selection and photo viewing

- Full HD 1080/60i with dual record of stills and movies

- 16.2MP Exmor R CMOS sensor for stunning low-light performance

- 3D still image and 3D Sweep Panorama: change the view of the world


Kodak Sport Disposible Camera - The Cheapest Waterproof Camera for Snorkeling

You don't have to buy a digital camera to take photos underwater. This little one-time-use film camera from Kodak doesn't offer a lot of features, but it is waterproof to 50 feet and will allow you to take 27 photos on your snorkeling trip at very little cost.

Sample Photos from Waterproof Cameras - Examples from three different cameras

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Taken with a Nikon Coolpix AW100 (Photo by Lisa Howard)Taken with a Fujifilm FinePix XP30(Photo by Lisa Howard)Taken with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS4(Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Nikon Coolpix AW100 (Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Nikon Coolpix AW100 (Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Fujifilm FinePix XP30(Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Fujifilm FinePix XP30 (Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS4(Photo by Lisa Howard)
Taken with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS4 (Photo by Lisa Howard)

5 Tips for Using Your Waterproof Camera

How to get the best photos of your snorkeling adventure

1. Try your camera on land and then in a swimming pool before you take it snorkeling. Once you're in the water, you want to be able to take pictures immediately, not spend time figuring out how to operate it underwater.

2. Choose the largest file setting your camera offers to achieve the best quality. Each photo will take more room on your memory card, but you'll get the best quality when viewing or printing your photos.

3. Get close to your subject. Light doesn't travel the same way underwater as it does on land, so you'll get the best pictures if you're within a foot or two of your subject.

4. Use a flash or your camera's underwater mode. This will help improve the color of your images so they don't look so blue.

5. Use a fast shutter speed to capture moving objects. Fish are fast! To prevent blurry photos, use your camera's sport setting or a fast (at least 1/125 second) shutter speed.

(Public domain file photo from the National Park Service)

Shop for Underwater Cameras on eBay - Get greal deals on new and used equipment

If you're looking for good deals, eBay is a great place to shop. You can often find new equipment at lower prices than other online stores, and even better deals on used equipment. It's also a great place to pick up Nikonos underwater cameras. For decades, these were the top scuba cameras you could buy. Nikon stopped making them when the demand for film cameras waned as fancy new digital cameras came on the market, but if you enjoy 35mm photography, the Nikonos is still a great buy.

When buying on eBy, just be sure to shop from a seller with good ratings and you could walk away with the underwater camera of your dream for an unbelievable price!

Today's underwater cameras for snorkeling are often shockproof and dustproof, too

Sony DSC-TX10 in Action - See video shot with the Sony DSC-TX10 underwater camera

Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling - Reviews and comments welcome!

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    • traveller27 profile image


      7 years ago

      Very nice and great idea for a lens!


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