28 February

Designerplanet:Best Underwater Cameras Reviews & Buyers Guide


Olympus TG-6


The Olympus TG-6 is an incredible imaging tool. Built with adventure seekers in mind, it’s shockproof, freezeproof, waterproof (to 45ft without the housing), dustproof and basically lifeproof. It was only natural that divers would adopt it as the go-to camera to document their adventures. Olympus has always targeted its Tough series towards divers by producing their own underwater housings to increase the depth limit and allow external accessories to be mountedsuch as lenses and lights.

The TG-6 is the most recent in the popular series and like its predecessors, it has become incredibly popular among underwater photographers.

TG-6 Highlights

Sensor 12 MP 1/2.33″ inch
Lens 25mm – 100mm , F2.0 – F4.9
Video 4K (30fps), 1080p (120fps)
Minimum Focus Distance Standard – 10cm, Super Macro: 1cm – 30cm
ISO 100 – 12800
Burst Shooting Up to 20fps
Special Features Lifeproof, Microscope mode, Field Sensor System (GPS, Temperature and more), HDR


  • Easy to operate.
  • Useful underwater modes which work great.
  • Waterproof body – lower risk in case of housing flood.
  • Outstanding built-in macro performance.


  • No manual mode (M). This is the main drawback of the Tough series, likely done purposely by Olympus for various reasons.
  • Small sensor, image quality not as good as its 1″ sensor rivals.
  • More o-rings to maintain and keep lint-free.

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Sealife DC2000

The DC2000 is a high quality 1″ sensor camera, designed for underwater photography. As opposed to other models, this fact makes it super easy to use and very straightforward for novice underwater photographers who don’t want to mess around with too many settings. That being said, it’s also capable of full manual controls, for more advanced users.
The camera itself is waterproof, so in the unlikely case of a leak, you don’t have to worry about your camera and it is designed to survive. The housing merely extends the depth range in which you can use it, and allows you to mount external lenses and accessories on top.
Note that the DC2000 has a fixed lens (no optical zoom), which means external lenses are highly recommended to extend your range – either macro or wide.

DC2000 Highlights

Sensor 20 MP Sony 1″ CMOS
Lens 31mm fixed
Video 1080p@60fps
Minimum Focus Distance 9cm / 3.5″
Underwater Modes 4 Modes – Dive, Snorkel,
External Light and Flash.3 Underwater WB modes
Burst Shooting 10fps
Special Features Waterproof camera


  • Super easy to use – designed for divers
  • Camera body is waterproof
  • Underwater modes available


  • Fixed lens (no zoom) – need wet lenses for wide / macro
  • Image quality not as good as other in its class
  • User interface isn’t intuitive for those used to other compacts.

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Canon G9X Mark II 


Canon’s entry level compact – the G9X II is a fantastic choice for beginners and advanced users alike. The simple interface relies mostly on the camera’s touch screen, but with proper initial settings you can control everything you need inside a housing as well without compromising on ease of use.
The G9XII features Canon’s 1″ sensor, so image quality is at par with its bigger brothers from the G series, but the price tag is much more affordable, and most users don’t need the advanced features on the pricier cameras.
The major compromise compared to the G7X or G5X series, is the lens on the G9X II which isn’t as sharp.

Canon G9X Mark II Highlights

Sensor 20 MP / 1″ inch BSI-CMOS
Lens 28mm – 84mm , F2.0 – F4.9
Video 1080p (60fps)
Minimum Focus Distance 5 cm (1.97″)
ISO 125 – 12800
Burst Shooting Up to 8.1fps
Special Features Control all settings via touchscreen


  • Small and affordable
  • 1″ sensor – great dynamic range and low light capabilities
  • Wi-Fi / NFC / Bluetooth connectivity


  • Relies mostly on touch screen, requires initial setup to use all features
  • Lens not as sharp as other G series cameras
  • No 4K video

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Panasonic LX10


The Panasonic LX10 is a more affordable competitor for the Canon G7X II and the Sony RX100 V / VI.
Panasonic did a great job with this model, packing excellent features into this compact camera, without compromising on image quality. The LX10 produces stunning 20MP stills and 4K videos. Actually, video is where it really shines. Panasonic have plenty of experience with video from their popular GH4 and GH5 cameras and they have integrated that experience and some great advanced features, into the LX10. Zebra striping and focus peaking are available and incredible useful for videographers.
The LX10 is the only compact we know that offers back focus AF – a feature usually found in DSLR’s or mirrorless cameras and very useful for composing shots properly in-camera.
A significant advantage is has over the Canon and Sony alternatives, is accurate and easy white balance, even at deeper depths.

Panasonic LX10 Highlights

Sensor 20.1 MP / 1″ inch High Sensitivity MOS sensor
Lens 24mm – 72mm , F2.0 – F4.9
Video 4K (30fps), 1080p (120fps)
Minimum Focus Distance Standard – 30cm, Macro – 3cm
ISO 80 – 25600
Burst Shooting Up to 10fps


  • Excellent image quality – video and stills
  • Great WB capabilities
  • Advanced features for video shooting
  • Affordable
  • Back focus available

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  • Not many housings available for it
  • No manual flash control

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