Gear recommendations for digital cameras

Discussion in 'Paddling Photography' started by jurgenk, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    I kept the title general so that others may give their insights into what works for them, but what I am very interested in is what those of you who have Canon S3 IS's would reccomend in the way of gear (really interested in a relatively inexpensive waterproof case, and other picture-taking essentials). I bought a 2GB SD card at Walmart the other day and a card reader so I am set that way but there is obviously some other items that are necessary. Thanks for any help...

    Brad
     
  2. Dan_Millsip

    Dan_Millsip Paddler & Admin

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    Here's my setup:

    [​IMG]

    I've got two 52mm lens adapters, a 52mm Raynox DCR 6600PRO wide angle converter, a polarizing filter (linear polarizer works fine with the S3), a haze-1 filter, 2 sets of 4 AA rechargeable batteries (plus one set in the camera), and 3 - 2 GB high speed SD memory cards.

    I keep everything in a Underwater Kenetics waterproof box (#5010). I've modified the box by adding a lash tab on each side (to attach to my deck rigging) as well as velcro on the bottom of the box to hold foam wedges that are cut to the shape of the deck of my boat.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Although I don't particularly like anything on my front deck, I did paddle around for the past two weeks with the box firmly attached and had no problems -- it was nice having the camera readily available without having to remove my spray skirt.

    *****
     
  3. Jurfie

    Jurfie Paddler

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    :shock: No wonder you take such nice pictures! I'm jealous. I really need to take a photog class and get a decent camera and lenses.

    I've always wondered if those boxes really are watertight...I'm not too fond of forking out all that $$$ to have it take a swim. :?
     
  4. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    Dan and others, I was looking for soft cases at Vistek and saw this rain cover from Kata. $48 from Vistek, and am wondering if this type of product would be useful for a digital SLR such as the S3, or would be difficult to use. On Vistek's site it states that the product is suitable for the Nikon D70 which appears similar to the Canon. Thought this might offer some use as splash protection inside another case or when using the camera when raining. Thoughts, opinions, general reflections on life...

    Brad
     
  5. Papacliff

    Papacliff Paddler

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    If you're not married to the Canon S3, there are alternatives. If you want something a little simpler, there is an Olympus digital that is "waterproof". It is the Stylus 770 sw. Here is the link to the mfg's site that gives all the information.

    http://www.olympusamerica.com/cpg_secti ... oduct=1287

    I saw a couple of reviews, and they look pretty good, but I haven't seen it in person, nor do I know of anyone that has one.

    Just food for thought.

    Cliff
     
  6. Jurfie

    Jurfie Paddler

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    That model is #1 on my "if I were in the market to replace my current digital" list. Seems perfect for kayaking, as I am paranoid about dipping my 500UZ (I tend to just wear my camera around my neck in flatwater for quick access). I like my Olympus, but my particular model does not have image stabilization (which the 770sw does have), and a few of my kayaking pictures turn out blurry because of it.
     
  7. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    Papacliff, thanks for the thought, but I have the S3 already (purchased from DarenN of board fame) and I also have a Canon PowerShot SD200 with a Canon waterproof enlosure for it. I am going to buy the Kata rain cover as well as a Crumpler bag from Vistek and I should be set for dry land. If I start paddling with the S3, I will purechase a similar set up as Dan's (results will vary though).

    Brad
     
  8. Papacliff

    Papacliff Paddler

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    You are welcome.

    I currently have a Canon Powershot A540. I love the camera, but I don't really want to spend $170+ for the waterproof housing. I'll probably wait (like Jurfie) until I'm ready to buy a new camera.

    I picked up a dry pouch from NRS that has shoot through windows. I'll try that for now. As long as I keep to calm conditions, I'm not worried about splashing. If I'm being adventurous, I'm not taking pictures.

    Cliff
     
  9. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    I'm with you Cliff, in that if I had it all to do over again I would not have bought the housing for the S200. If memory serves, it was $200-$250 a couple of years ago, and if I had waited I could have gotten something like the Olympus or another waterproof point and shoot camera for less than the $600-700 I spent in total for the combination of housing and camera. There is an apt expression about a fool and his money...

    Brad
     
  10. nermal

    nermal Paddler

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    Pentax

    Five years ago I bought a waterproof digital and for paddling, I will never carry anything else.

    My current camera is the Pentax W20. It is a great waterproof digital. Instead of a wrist lanyard, I have a 20" line with a biner to attach it to me and I just throw it in my PFD pocket. I consider the cost of this camera to be cheap compared to crummy bags and awkward cases.

    In the world of digital cameras, it is not the best, but it produces a lot of nice shots.
     
  11. Kermode

    Kermode Paddler

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    Just today had a look at the Pentax Optio W20. Waterproof to 10 feet for 2 hours (they say). Only a 3x zoom but that's 38 to 114mm (35mm equiv.) there's also a 4x digital zoom (ok quality will decrease) horses for courses I guess. Also available is a neat "condom" that encases the thing, costs an extra $20 but it's meant to make the thing more secure to hold with wet hands. The S3 et al sure are nice cameras but I think I'd likesomething that's simpler & quicker to use, AND that won't curl up & die if I do send it for a swim. Check out review at
    http://www.steves-digicams.com/2007_rev ... o_w20.html
    I remember my SLR days lugging around tons of gear, changing lenses. I'm at the stage where I need to concentrate more on my paddling than the photography. :oops:
     
  12. DarenN

    DarenN Paddler

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    if we are going to de-rail jurgenks thread.........

    i bought the Pentax W30. that's why i sold the S3. that and the fact that the S3 is too complicated for my limited intellect. i'm more of a point-and-shoot guy.
    a really good camera will take really good pictures, but it won't make a photographer out of a boat builder.

    DarenN........
     
  13. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    Derail away as I have put more threads off the tracks than CN has lately... I wonder whether the S3 is too much for me as well, but the price was right and I figure I will do some research and try to learn how to use it effectively.

    Brad
     
  14. Kermode

    Kermode Paddler

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    :oops: Sorry.... just trying to assist.
     
  15. Mike_Jackson

    Mike_Jackson Paddler

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    I have a Pentax W20 which lives in a PFD pocket and a Canon S1 which is in a housing but is big and bulky and has to be put somewhere - guess which one gets used more... I think about 90% or more of my paddling pics get taken with the w20, though its optics and features are not up to the S1s. For me, I have to have a camera which I feel OK about getting wet - I did a trip with a camera in a dry box once and was always worrying about dunking it - and thus took far fewer pictures.
    Somehow Dan manages to get his camera out enough to take great pictures though!
     
  16. Dan_Millsip

    Dan_Millsip Paddler & Admin

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    The rain cover looks interesting and I think it would be useful for taking shots in the rain. I'd be hesitant to guess how good it would be for taking shots from your kayak without actually seeing one. The first thing I'd check for is the ease of getting your hands in and out of the bag (could be a problem if you need to grab your paddle in a hurry). The other thing I'd be concerned with is storing it -- basically, it would have to go under the cockpit cover, which creates condensation on the lens from being taken from a warm cockpit to colder outside temperatures. Certainly looks like a good item to have when taking rainy day shots around camp though -- and it seems reasonably priced, as well as being compact.

    btw: the S3 is not an SLR -- it's a point and shoot.

    *****
     
  17. jurgenk

    jurgenk Paddler

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    No worries Spirit Bear (Kermode), and thank you Dan and Mike. I wondered whether or not you could get the camera with the rain cover attached inside a dry box, and thus have some form of spray protection when using it paddling, but the point is rather moot as if the conditions are such that you are worrying about being hit by spray, then you would be unlikely to be taking a camera out of a dry box anyway. I will try it out and report back with my findings and thank you all for your contributions in helping me spend money.

    Brad
     
  18. Kermode

    Kermode Paddler

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  19. dgimcmillan

    dgimcmillan Paddler

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    Aquapac Bags

    I, for one, read that thread about aquapac bags when it came out :)

    So...I went to REI in Bellingham, since the website said they carried them. No luck :shock:

    Then I went back to the webpage and thought...and thought...and ordered a DSLR bag directly from Aquapac. Cost me 68 British pounds, which is about $120 CAD, I think.

    I got the Aquapac about 2 weeks ago, and haven't been able to use it yet. I'll be using a Pentax *ist DS with a 28-210 lens in it, and yes the camera and lens fits fine.

    Once I've used it, I'll post lost of pictures. I've got some pictures of kayaking (without protection) on my web page www.pbase.com/dgimc

    Ian Mc.
     
  20. sushiy

    sushiy Paddler

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    Extra memory card in case your card#1 dies like what happened to me lase weekend :evil: . And cheep waterproof disposal camera in case whole thing got broken.