Having a waterproof camera by your side can make all the difference in the world when you go on a vacation. Their rugged exterior allows you to take risks and have adventures, without having to worry about the camera’s durability. It is often said that smartphones are catching up with point-and-shoot cameras, but the peace of mind offered by an action camera is unparalleled.
These waterproof cameras are handy and you can easily take them up to a depth of 30-meters underwater. They are specially designed and tested to survive in any condition, which means they are shockproof, dust-proof and freeze-proof as well.
These cameras also offer connectivity options like Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth, which makes transferring files easy and quick.
If something waterproof isn’t what you specifically looking for, then check out the best travel cameras that offer extended zoom and are compact to carry around.
Meanwhile, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best waterproof cameras that you can own, to capture those precious moments no matter where you go.
Sensor: 12MP | Lens: 130 degree field-of-view | Waterproof: 5m | Freezeproof: -10° | Shockproof: 1.8m | Monitor: 2.7-inch, 230K dots | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner
Mounting fingers inbuilt
Best-in-class video stabilization
Lacks optical zoom
No waterproof camera compilation is complete without a GoPro. The newly launched GoPro Hero 8 retains all the abilities we are familiar with, such as native waterproofing, an ultrawide field-of-view and loads of shooting modes.
With the GoPro Hero 8, you also get HyperSmooth 2.0 stabilization across all shooting modes, timewarp modes, digital lenses, better phone compatibility for shooting and editing, and better battery life in the same tiny form factor. The new Mods can add a lot more versatility for specific use cases.
Olympus Tough TG-5
Sensor: 1/2.3-inch, 12MP | Lens: 25-100mm | Waterproof: 15m | Freezeproof: -10° | Shockproof: 2.1m | Monitor: 3-inch, 460K dots | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner
Raw format support
Range of accessories
Image smoothing at high ISOs
Zoom control is fiddly
As the name suggests, the Olympus Tough TG-5 is a tough camera with a solid build. Replacing the TG-4, Olympus made a bold move by actually reducing the pixel count from 16 mega-pixels (MP) to 12MP to produce better image quality – since the pixels are packed in quite as densely.
The dual panel glass keeps the camera from fogging up during extreme temperature changes, making it ideal for any situation.
The camera is equipped with various field sensors like GPS, thermometer, barometer and compass that can record the related data while shooting. The user can transfer this data onto any smartphone using the Olympus Image Track app making sharing oh-so-easy.
It also has different shooting modes including Underwater mode and a Pro-Capture mode for split-second movement.
Dive up to 15-meters into the sea, drop it from a height of 2.1-meters, crush it under a 100-kilo rock (don’t actually do this one, ok?) or hike up to meet the Yeti at temperatures down to -10 degrees Celsius, this camera can do it all.
Read the full review: Olympus TG-5
Nikon Coolpix W300
Cool enough to take on an adventure
Sensor: 1/2.3-inch, 16MP | Lens: 24-120mm | Waterproof: 30m | Freezeproof: -10° | Shockproof: 2.1m | Monitor: 3-inch, 921K dots | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner
Waterproof down to 30m
Wide zoom range
The Nikon Coolpix W300 is made for those who love capturing adventurous moments as they happen. Though Nikon has the GoPro series for this purpose, the W300 is packed in with more features.
The unique selling position of this camera is that it’s rugged and able to operate at depths up to 30-meters, handle a drop from a height of 2.4-meters and function in temperatures as low as -10 degrees Celsius.
It also has a SnapBridge feature that allows users to easily transfer images to any mobile device via Bluetooth Low Energy connection. Even though it’s available in orange, yellow and black – the camouflage version is especially badass.
Read the full review: Nikon Coolpix W300
Canon PowerShot D30
Sensor: 1/2.3-inch, 12.1MP | Lens: 28-140mm | Waterproof: 25m | Freezeproof: -10° | Shockproof: 2m | Monitor: 3-inch, 460K dots | Movies: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Good ergonomic design
White balance performance
Poor GPS functionality
No built-in Wi-Fi
Always have an issue finding the click button or switching between the different modes on a camera? The Canon PowerShot D30 solves that problem by giving users a camera with a good ergonomic design and big sized controllers.
Waterproof up to 25-meters with GPS tracking abilities, it’s considerably more rugged than it’s predecessor, the PowerShot D20. Its 12.1 megapixel sensor with DIGIC 4 processor may be dated, but delivers good quality images with high details and clarity.
The only complaint that we have is that it lacks Wi-Fi connectivity and can’t record altitude or depth data, which is a bit of a let down in comparison to what other cameras in this segment are capable of providing.
Read the full review: Canon PowerShot D30
Nikon 1 AW1
Sensor: 1-inch, 14.2 MP | Lens: 30-90mm | Waterproof: 15m | Freezeproof: -10° | Shockproof: 2m | Monitor: 3-inch, 921K dots | Movies: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Waterproof and tough
Reliable exposure metering
Bright, high-res monitor
Rear controls fiddly
Essential settings are hidden in menus
Most waterproof cameras have fixed lenses, which can be a hassle for some users. But that’s a problem that the Nikon 1 AW1 solves.
It was the first mirror-less camera with interchangeable lenses, and it’s waterproof, dust proof, shock proof and freeze proof as well. Its internal specs are the same as the Nikon 1 J3 including the 14.2-megapixel sensor that’s capable of capturing some really good pictures and can shoot videos in HD.
The only thing is that the selection of toughened lenses is limited so the focal lengths and maximum aperture available to you are also limited.
Read the full review: Nikon 1 AW1