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What do You Need for Underwater Photography

Submitted by admin on 2009-11-20 | Last Modified on 2010-08-26

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The answer to that is two-fold.  Yes, you need special equipment - but it doesn't have to be cost prohibitive. In the mysterious world under the water, which can feel like home and yet alien, there are scores of photo opportunities with the vast abundance of sea life and the changing landscape of the sea bed.  But taking a photograph in water is going to be different from using a camera on land.

Refraction is an issue you will contend with and without the right apparatus your pictures will have too much distortion and be quite unattractive. So what are your options? You can purchase an underwater camera - and most camera makers offer one or two in their line and the prices vary considerably.  Or, you can use a watertight housing to fit your usual camera.  If you decide to invest in underwater cameras you need to shop around for one that will best fit your needs as not all cameras will operate at all depths.

You need to consider what kind of pictures you are going to want to take and see what options are offered on the camera.  With the choice of a watertight housing you are able to use the camera you already have and any lenses that go along with it. In effect this means you are saving money and may well have more options than if you buy an underwater camera, such as the zoom feature and flash.

Most photographs taken underwater will either be with a wide angled lens for the panoramic views - or a macro lens for the tight, close up shots of the vibrantly coloured fish and undulating mats of sea anemones.

If you are one of those who prefer using a 35mm camera with film then you can also do this underwater with the housing. Remember, one of the drawbacks of this is that you cannot change the film underwater and that means making repeated trips to the surface. This will waste a lot of your precious diving time.  Whereas digital underwater cameras allows you to be right there at that special moment (that you may otherwise have missed) and the storage cards are capable of holding hundreds if not thousands of pictures - allowing you to snap away to your heart's content.

One of the failings of a digital camera in a housing is that it may not be capable of the width required to take the gorgeous pictures of the varied landscape and without the fish-eye port you will suffer refraction.  A fish-eye port is designed to compensate for the refraction the water causes and therefore make your photos as crisp as if they were taken on land.  Suppliers of the watertight housing should also be able to provide you with extra optical help if your camera doesn't have a built-in wide angle feature.

Once you have the right camera equipment you can turn underwater photography into a new hobby - combined with your scuba diving you have the best of both worlds and the memories to keep and share.


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