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“A video about underwater cameras and which one might be best for you so stick stick around hey guys joe here and if you have any interest in underwater photography. Underwater cinematography you live at a great time because camera technology has come so far in the recent years. Making it possible for just about anybody in any budget to go out and capture some unique quality visuals and it s just fantastic. I can t say enough about it so today i want to talk about the three genres of cameras.
And how they can apply to underwater imaging more specifically how they may work for your underwater imagery intentions we re gonna talk about action cameras talk about patient cameras. We re gonna talk about dslr cameras each camera type takes both video and stills in the newer models provide all sorts of bells and whistles as far as things like high frame rates high resolutions. Just the list goes on and on and i m not going to get into all those specific details. I m gonna focus more on the practicality of using these cameras offshore in their overall quality.
And expectations. You should have for them so here we go first things first let s start with action cameras. Everybody knows this this is a gopro. Very common probably the most popular action camera out there.
But there are other manufacturers that make quality cameras as well this happens to be the gopro. These are perfect for capturing the moment. They re super simple you can push one button stick it on your head somewhere mount it wherever go dive record that whole dive. And if something really cool happens a big shark comes up a whale comes up maybe.
Even lockness shows ever you ve got your evidence now. Because you just pushed your one button on this very simple camera. So that in itself is probably one of the biggest pro for this type of camera. An action camera and another thing is price point.
You get a high quality action camera for under a few hundred bucks. Now and that s pretty impressive. They re simple mostly fully automatic. So you don t have to worry too much about settings.
The rugged compact and even if something horrible happened at the price point you can get these at yeah with distinct to lose or damage. One of these. But it wouldn t be nearly as bad is if you ve lost or damaged when the higher end cameras. We ll talk about in a minute now the pros of this camera are also the cons the simplicity of opera.
This camera has some negatives in it as well so you really don t have any manual control over anything pretty much in most action. Cameras. Everything s just about fully automatic. So you re very limited in manual control that takes away some creative freedoms.
If you want to create a certain type of look or image one example that is white bounces as far as scuba diving. Is concerned you really need an aggressive white balance capability to take advantage of natural light. And you really don t have that in action cameras..
Yet that i m aware of very limited white balance options. That s kind of a bummer. However you can do some settings with this camera capture fix white balance and then you can edit in post production to get a reasonably good image and i ve actually done a tutorial on color correcting gopro footage. So if you re interested check it out yeah.
They re kind of bumming with these cameras is they re small cameras. Which is one of the pros. But they also have very small image sensors in small image sensors are generally okay and bright outdoor environments. But what happens is when you go down under water especially past 30 feet.
We start to lose a lot of light. And that s a negative with these cameras because being small image sensors. They have very little real estate to capture a lot of light and since it s an automatic camera. When we go down deeper.
The one setting the the gopro can change especially when on video mode is the iso. Which is the cameras sensitivity basically. And so it s gonna crease that is oh up as we descend and with a small image sensor camera the higher the iso goes. The grainy or the image is going to get.
And that s very noticeable on small image sensors cameras so in a dark environment. We re gonna get some grain with these cameras if we re not using an artificial light. Any other potential concern with this cameras. If you do have ambitions to get more involved in underwater photography or cinematography.
If you just rely on this camera. It s kind of hard to learn from it since it s fully automatic. You re not going to be experimenting with shutter speed iso. An aperture.
The three main variables. You would control in more proper full control photography photography. So having said. All that these things are fantastic.
I think every scuba diver should have on whether you re in the photography or cinematography or not just for that option to capture the moment at the price point. They re hard to beat so pretty impressive stuff. These little cameras so next. I want to talk about the point and shoot cameras in each camera manufacturer makes their version of what i m calling point and shoots and in the basic take away for what a point and shoot.
Is it s just a small compact camera that allows mostly full manual control of the camera. So you can generally control your iso your aperture your shutter speed with these cameras. It s giving you the same functionality as a professional level camera..
And i think these are ideal for underwater cinematography and photography. Whether you re just getting started or if you re already involved in the hobby or industry. Some of the pros are these one the price point you can get a pretty high quality point shoot type camera for a few hundred to say up to a thousand dollars for the real high end ones. And that s pretty good for what these things can do what i m most excited about with these right now.
Though is now these are coming out with larger image sensors originally in this camera is a good example. This is a very old camera now this is a small image sensor camera. So even though i have full manual control this camera. I still had a small image sensor and that could be somewhat problematic when i would need to increase the iso in low light situations.
I could end up with a grainy image. Now some of the newer point and shoot cameras come with larger image sensors that should mean. We should be able to get much higher image quality out of these cameras even in lower light. Underwater situations.
And that s pretty exciting and not to say that the smaller image sensor cameras. Can t do well. I ve actually published a reef guide book using images captured from this camera. Other pros about them lenses fixed.
They re generally decent quality and they re generally fairly wide at the open end. Which is good for underwater work they re real easy to travel with whether you re getting on a plane going somewhere or even just going out on the boat to do your dive. These are small cameras easy to do whatever you need to do with them pretty cool these cameras actually work very well for macro photography. When using the onboard flash.
You can actually get really close to the image and possibly get yourself in situations that you couldn t do with even a more professional camera. So these are very good for macro photography. When used correctly now the cons with these cameras are the first obvious. One is you have to get underwater housing to put these cameras in and oftentimes you have to go to a third party to do that and they can be very expensive and on top of that sometimes you lose the ability to use onboard flash.
In some of those housings that would take away some of the macro photography options. I just talked about however. I like the canon point shoot cameras. And i m not sponsored supported by canon at this point.
But one of the reasons. I like the canon cameras is they actually offer their own housing in there they re modestly priced. They generally give you full function of the camera. And you can actually use the flash.
So that s pretty cool another potential negative. These is not all point and shoot do come with large image sensors at this point. And some don t offer full manual control on everything so for example..
Some may offer manual control on the picture settings. But not on the video setting. If video is important you make sure you find one with full manual in the video settings and i ll reference some links below to some cameras that may be worth considering cool stuff finally if upmost control and quality is your thing. It s time to consider a dslr camera full frame dslr cameras can easily produce professional broadcast quality imagery and i think there s two main reasons that they re capable of producing such quality imagery.
One is a large image sensor specifically a full frame image sensor dslr that large image sensor is a lot of real estate for light to land on what that does essentially is make that camera that are able to capture quality imagery. In low light situations. You can generally increase your iso substantially on a full frame camera before you start to see the negative effects of grain that in itself is very powerful with these cameras second to that are the optics you can put whatever lens. You want on these cameras and benefit from those premium optics from those lenses.
So these cameras are primed to produce some quality results of course these terms have full manual control of our key settings. Like iso shutter. Speed and aperture. And some even have quite a bit of flexibility and things like white balance.
Which is phenomenal as i said they re definitely capable of producing production and broadcast core results in fact. I ve used dslr cameras and some of my work. I ve done with national geographic and i even produce a documentary for marine conservation organization. Using solely dslr cameras for the underwater work.
And i ll leave some links. If you want to check out some of those examples. These cameras are rugged and robust and when you put them in a big underwater housing. They just feel a jit and i i kind of say that jokingly.
But i actually do think that s a pro because when you re holding this big expensive camera in this elaborate lunar lander type case you just feel professional and almost put you in a mindset like you re primed to go do some professional work to capture some awesome content in in comparison. When you re holding something like this and the point. And shoot range. This is a lot more like a bath toy and not to say you can t do professional results with it.
But it just you don t get that subconscious mental. Big underwater housing with the point shoot. And i do think that s a pro to have that drive and you re holding this camera cause i do you think it helps you maximize the quality of imagery. You can capture it with that camera and the main common this camera.
If there s a price for the quality high end dslr cameras can start around several thousand dollars and go up from there that s just the camera body itself then there s optics lenses. There s going to be thousands of dollars and then there s accessories for the camera then of course you need an underwater housing which oftentimes can be even more expensive than the camera itself a lot of times underwater housings are sold all our carts you got to get a lot of accessories for that underworld housing for it to even work. Underwater and you can easily get to the point. Where you are escorting a camera setup.
That s more expensive in the car you re driving it in so. There s definitely an investment for these types of cameras. The second is kind of the overall complexity one just general logistics..
Getting the camera. Where you want it to go. There s some preparation involved they re big they re bulky. They re not travel friendly if you gotta fly somewhere.
It s a lot of equipment to fly with just going on a boat ride to get to your dive site is cumbersome. Because you had this big old camera. That s expensive and it s on a boat with other divers and you want to make sure that it doesn t get damaged at all so in addition to those logistics. You have this kind of ongoing anxiety.
When you have one of these cameras. Because of its value you re one worried about it all the time on the boats. You want to have to damage. It and then too there s a weird mental game.
When you jump into the water. You have all this money in electronics. And you re trying to jump into saltwater and that s just hard to get over in sometimes stuff happens there are bad days where housings can break water can get in and cameras can be ruined and if that ever does happen. It s a big investment that just got washed down the drain.
Having said that though you can do a lot of preparations and coordination to minimize the chance of those horrible situations happening. But it does leave that anxiety in your mind so when you re off shore. You have this additional burden of worrying about the camera equipment because of its value the other thing instead of two is they are somewhat complex to use underwater eventually you kind of learn and you ll get more efficient with these types of cameras. But these are complex cameras to get dialed in just right for the imager you want and when you re underwater.
I don t have a lot of time again with that s something else that s kind of a hurdle. But eventually you do start to master these cameras and get better with them. But you know it is something to consider so those are the three types of cameras. That i think all serve a valuable place in the underwater imagery realm.
And if it was to me. I would prefer to have an assortment of all these cameras. But if you only have to pick one of a modest budget and you are serious about getting into underwater photography and cinematography. I would highly consider the point and shoot.
It s a modest price point and you have the full control. And i think you are capable of producing professional imagery with it so that is it if you thought this is helpful please give the video a thumbs up and if you re interested in underwater photography and cinematography please subscribe and feel free to leave any comments about any topics. You would like to see described further thanks for watching. I m joe ” .
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