Let's Get Wet: 5 Cameras For Underwater Photography

Top tech for underwater photography, plus tips from the master of the genre.

TECH  |  July 31, 2014By Michael Frank

The Point & Shoot
No other camera this cheap goes this deep (82 feet) without a waterproof case. It can also withstand a drop from 6.5 feet. We love the 28 mm wide-angle-to-5x-zoom range, the macro focusing, the mode that corrects for blue light underwater, and the new Sunlight LCD mode that reduces glare. $330
 
The Videocam
You already have a GoPro? You don’t have this GoPro, which: (1) Has a 33 percent sharper lens mated to low-light detection. (2) Lets you shoot up to 4k resolution—just like Shark Week’s Casagrande (see sidebar). (3) Fires 240 fps slow-mo that makes silly stunts look Bruce Lee–badass. $400
 
The Interchangeable-Lens Camera
Waterproof to 49 feet, this is like a budget version of the Nauticam-case-protected DSLR (at right). “Real” camera chops include 1080p video at 60 fps, a screaming 1/16,000-second shutter, RAW mode, and continuous tracking while you move in for the toothy close-up. $800
 
The DSLR
If you’re aiming for pro-level photography, you need a no-compromises case. The NA-70D (for Canon’s $1,100 70D) costs three times more than the camera, but bonus features include dual grips; a magnified, tiltable viewfinder; and a sensor system that alerts you if the housing springs a leak. $3,330
 
The Sea Scooter
Need to fight a killer current to get a shot? Put this prop-powered vehicle between your legs (seriously) and you’ll be able to cruise underwater with your hands free to operate your gear. (You’ll still need to use your arms to steer.) Its battery provides 80 minutes of power, and a tow arm allows you to bring pals deep, too. $2,895
 
Tags:gear, gadget, tech, camera
Photographs by Jana Morgan