Best Waterproof Cameras of 2019 – Complete Buyer’s Guide

Due to the advancements  in technology today, camera manufacturers have branched out widely over the last couple of years, and it’s never been this easy to take the perfect picture. Despite these advancements, if you take most cameras present in the market into the water, you will face a lot of issues in trying to make it work.

Getting a high-quality waterproof camera a couple of years ago at a reasonable price seemed completely impossible, but now there are many different products present in the market that work exceptionally in capturing your adventures underwater. Mentioned below are the top ten waterproof cameras and what they are best for. We have even provided a buyer’s guide to make use of and help you find the camera with the best features.

So make sure you continue to read this review and find the best model to suit your needs.

Comparison Chart of the Best Waterproof Cameras

PRODUCT DETAILS
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Olympus Tough TG-6

  • Macro performance is very impressive
  • Provides you with high-speed and continuous shooting
  • Best overall that has a very bright and big lens for compact cameras
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Nikon W300

  • Runner-up that comes with a weather-sealed body
  • Has built-in wireless Wi-Fi that allows quick image sharing
  • With optical image stabilization, you get clear and crisp pictures
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Fujifilm FinePix XP130

  • Has a 5x zooming lens present
  • Compact and comes with exceptional features
  • Best for the money due to its tough waterproof design
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GoPro HERO 7 Black

  • Waterproof up to 33 feet deep
  • Has a smartphone app that provides streaming support
  • Best waterproof action camera due to voice control it comes with
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Fujifilm FinePix XP140

  • Has a thin design that makes it pocket-friendly
  • Best waterproof cheap camera due to its inexpensive price point
  • LCD screen is above-average, providing you with a clear view of your subject
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Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT30

  • Best waterproof travel camera since it is quad-proof
  • Shots taken by this camera underwater are mind-blowing
  • Has an optical image stabilization lens that reduces blurriness caused by a shaky hand
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DJI OSMO Action

  • Also supports HDR and flat profiles
  • Comes with a rugged built that makes it long-lasting
  • Best waterproof compact camera due to its easily swappable filters
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Fujifilm Disposable QuickSnap

  • Highly affordable
  • Comes with a tough waterproof design
  • Best waterproof disposable camera with an intuitive interface
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Ourlife Kids Waterproof Camera

  • Comes with USB charging, giving it a long battery life
  • Best waterproof camera for kids due to its easy-to-use features
  • LCD monitor is very bright, allowing you to view the settings easily
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GoPro HERO

  • Has a tough waterproof design
  • Touch LCD makes it easy to set it
  • Best waterproof camera under $200 that comes with voice control
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Are All Cameras Waterproof?

No, not all cameras have a waterproof nature. However, for the most part, they do have the ability to survive through slight drizzling and snow. All the cameras mentioned in this review have a waterproof nature, but vary according to how much water they can survive in.

Some cameras have the ability to survive all the way down in the water, whereas some can only handle the water pressure at 30 meters or less. If such a camera goes below 30 meters, it can stop functioning, ultimately resulting in a waste of your money. Most of these models come with a meter gauge, which allows you to keep track of how much water it can survive in with ease.

All the cameras present below have the ability to survive water and harsh weather conditions, making them your perfect travel partners.

Best Uses for a Waterproof Camera

A waterproof camera allows you to break your photography boundaries and assists you in exploring the world beyond your reach. With this type of camera, you can dive into the deepest areas of the ocean and snap pictures that will give you a memory of a lifetime. These are essential for adventure lovers, as it allows them to shoot photography in the harshest conditions, as well. Some uses of a waterproof camera include:

Diving

Considered to be a mind-blowing activity, scuba diving allows you to go to the depths of the ocean and swim alongside ocean life. Since you are under the water, you breathe with an attached tube and can stay underwater as long as you want. This experience is something you would love to remember for years, so investing in a waterproof camera with exceptional video recording and photography is ideal.

Snorkeling

Snorkeling is another experience you will love to record to share with your kids as you grow old. Snorkeling allows you to remain on the surface of the water with your face slightly below, taking in the magnificent view down below. With the perfect waterproof camera and good zoom, this experience can be captured with ease.

Other Adventures

Apart from water diving and snorkeling, there are other places where you can use a waterproof camera. These adventures include sky diving, mountain climbing, and even hiking. A waterproof camera can survive in tough weather conditions, and investing in one is a great idea.

Why Are These Models the Best?

The models present below have features essential to a waterproof camera. These make them the best in the market, and are as follows:

Sensor

Compared with mirrorless cameras and DSLRs that have a large sensor, many of the cameras mentioned below have smaller sensors. These allow you to take better pictures in low-light conditions, such as the conditions present underwater, which makes them the best. 

Wi-Fi

When you take pictures underwater, they are something not everyone can experience and see. You will want to show your friends and family the adventures you have been on, so having Wi-Fi present in your camera is an essential feature. For this reason, all of the models in the list down below have Wi-Fi integration to provide you with quick and easy sharing of pictures.

This way, you do not have to wait to transfer your scuba diving or your snorkeling pictures onto your computer.

Raw

Many cameras in the market do not allow you to shoot in raw format, so they lack the small details you will need when shooting underwater. However, with the cameras mentioned below, you will be able to shoot in raw format and have raw video recording, as well.

This will present you with good leverage when checking the detail in your pictures later on and even allow you to edit the images and control noise.

Quick Take - Best Waterproof Cameras

Before we dive into our review, here are the best waterproof cameras:

  1. Olympus Tough TG-6
  2. ​Nikon W300
  3. Fujifilm FinePix XP130

Review of the Best Waterproof Camera

To make your search for the best waterproof camera easy, we have compiled the top ten waterproof cameras present in the market that are worth your time. These reviews will help in finding the best gadget for you and also tell you the pros and cons each has. 

We have even mentioned which of the following are the best for money, traveling, and videos so you can find the one you are looking for easily.

Read on below to find the best camera present today for your adventures.

Best Overall:
 Olympus Tough TG-6

Olympus Tough TG-6 Waterproof Camera, Black

PROS

  • In-camera focus stacking makes the subject look clear
  • Full HD video at high speed provides you with no lagging at all
  • Has excellent color reproduction that makes images seem crisp
  • f/2.0 brighter than normal lenses makes sure that it can work at night 
  • With 4k video recording, you can enjoy a video that focuses on every detail

CONS

  • Doesn’t have full manual control for you to adjust

What Recent Buyers Report

This camera takes premium-quality pictures that are bright and performs really well in low light, according to recent buyers. It also provides macro shots that are exceptional, and the underwater photos are clear, as well. Despite the 12MP it comes with, the pictures are clearer and more detailed than many 16MP and 20MP cameras in the market.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out due to the anti-fog, dual-pane glass present on the lens. This glass protects the lens and helps in providing you clear pictures with proper detail. It also has an impressive macro focus with a distance of one-cm even when you use the full optical zoom of up to 4x. This means that your macro photos will be impressive and very detailed.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is the perfect buy for people who enjoy underwater sports. It has good features and provides you with intricate detail in the images. You can go diving and shoot the corals or go swimming with the dolphins and take selfies with them. It also has good zooming ability and is ideal for high-speed, continuous shots.

Bottom Line

Overall, this camera is an amazing model to buy for both professionals and beginners. It has features they can enjoy and its compact size makes it worth every penny. Carrying this device with you while you travel will be no problem at all.

Runner-up:
 Nikon W300

Nikon W300 Waterproof Underwater Digital Camera with TFT LCD, 3', Orange (26524)

PROS

  • 12MP camera lens for clear photography
  • Weather-sealed body protects the camera from harsh weather conditions
  • Optical image stabilization reduces blurriness and shaking of hands during shots
  • Three-inch fixed LCD screen allows you to get a good view of the picture you are taking
  • 7 fps continuous shooting makes sure there is no lagging during photography session

CONS

  • Has a small image sensor that does not take wide pictures

What Recent Buyers Report

According to the reports of recent buyers, this camera provides no blurry photos at all. The white balance and dynamic range are very good and provide you with high image quality all the time. In addition, the screen on this device helps with exposure compensation if your shot does not look like it is supposed to.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The camera stands out because of the two premium lenses. Both of these lenses are supported by FX, which is a full-frame camera. The pictures it takes have a variable aperture design and the ability to capture a full circular picture even at 8 mm. Also, it zooms in and provides a more traditional fisheye look at 15 mm. Its design helps in protecting the camera and lens from both moisture and dust.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is ideal and designed especially for professional usage. Its expensive price tag brings features that experts are more likely to enjoy rather than beginners. It has a GPS, depth gauge, altimeter, and is even freeze-proof. Furthermore, the angled shutter button and slightly large handgrip make it a better option for experts.

Bottom Line

Overall, this camera is perfectly waterproof down to 100 feet and makes use of the SnapBridge app in order to get connected to your iOS or Android phone. It is supported by Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and NFC and is worth buying.

Best for the Money 
 Fujifilm FinePix XP130

Fujifilm FinePix XP130 Waterproof Digital Camera w/16GB SD Card - White

PROS

  • Simple usage makes it good for beginners
  • Is a reasonable camera with so many features
  • 5x zoom lens allows you to take pictures at a good distance
  • Has a tough waterproof design that doesn’t let snow or hail harm it
  • Bluetooth and Wi-Fi lens allows quick image transferring on your social media

CONS

  • Rear LCD does not support touchscreen
  • Video limited only to 1080p and is not very detailed

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this is a street camera perfect for all weather and diving. It is perfect for people who do street photography, even in hail and snow. It provides you with high-quality pictures and has two modes to choose from – shooting and program AE mode. You can alter the settings manually, which allows you to customize this device.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out because of its ability to produce bold and bright pictures. It comes with a pocket-friendly design with rounded edges and a silver porthole ring around the lens. The loop to hold the wrist strap has a sturdy metal bar that allows easy handling. Moreover, the 5x zoom is very modest in this range and can provide detailed photographs.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera works perfectly for people who like to have underwater adventures, such as snorkeling and diving. Its waterproof nature allows you to take it deep inside and does not lag at all. The pictures it takes are clear and crisp, making it perfect for underwater photography. Investing in this camera is a very smart move as it allows you to fulfill your photography fantasies easily.

Bottom Line

This Fujifilm waterproof camera is a tough product and isn't affected by water at all. It is a budget-friendly pocket camera that can be carried around easily. However, if you need some advanced features and manual controls, you will have to spend a little more.

Best Waterproof Action Camera:
 GoPro HERO 7 Black

GoPro HERO 7 Black

PROS

  • Its compact size allows you to travel with it
  • Rugged design makes it good for traveling, as it doesn’t break easily
  • Since it is waterproof up to 33 feet you can take pictures underwater
  • Has 4k 60 fps recording stabilization that reduces blurriness and provides details
  • Voice control features allow you to control or set this camera with your voice whenever you want

CONS

  • Battery life is not long enough and can die down after a couple of shots

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this GoPro camera is waterproof and provides you with the quality you have been yearning for. It has a SuperPhoto HDR setting mode that works exceptionally well and provides you with the kind of images you need underwater. Furthermore, handling it is also an added advantage as it is simple and easy to do and provides you with optical image stabilization, so you do not have to deal with blurry pictures.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out due to its rear display, which is two inches in size, diagonally measured, and is extremely sensitive to touch. It is crisp and very bright and, to assist you during your underwater adventure, you can view this screen from extreme angles and it will still provide you with the clarity you need. This screen shows you the camera’s lens view to adjust the settings.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is the perfect fit for people who like to go on adventures. GoPro is well-known for being an adventure camera and is perfect for biking, trailing, hiking, mountain climbing, and deep-sea diving. Since it is made for traveling, it is waterproof and can survive extreme weather conditions. For people who like to go on long, tough adventure journeys, this is perfect for them.

Bottom Line

This GoPro Hero7 is a camera that provides you with not only image stabilization, but also video stabilization as well for proper adventure recording. It has Wi-Fi integration that allows you to upload your adventures as soon as you enjoy them, which makes it perfect for traveling.

Best Cheap Waterproof Camera:
 Fujifilm FinePix XP140

Fujifilm FinePix XP140 Waterproof Digital Camera w/16GB SD Card - Yellow

PROS

  • Its thin size allows you to travel with it easily
  • Has built-in flash ideal for nighttime photography
  • Comes with good light sensitivity for clearer images
  • Affordable price tag makes it the perfect gift for your loved ones
  • Comes with a 7.6 cm screen allows you to see what the lens is seeing

CONS

  • Has a fixed screen that doesn’t allow you to take images at different angles

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this camera comes with twenty shooting modes that make it easy for you to take and record pictures and videos. With this device, you can go kayaking or scuba diving without worrying about water splashing on your camera or compromising on the image quality.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This Fujifilm camera is well-built and very robust, providing you with multiple shooting modes, such as 4k video recording. It also has a waterproof nature up to 25 meters and is an ideal gift for the holidays since it can perform effortlessly underwater. It has great low-light performance and focuses on your subjects to provide you with a good image overall. It also has many functions at this price point.

Who Will Use This Most

Since this camera allows you to take images of portraits and landscapes both, it takes shots filled with punchy colors and perfect skin tones, as well. It has good colors and a very ergonomic layout, making it perfect for professional photography and beginners, as well. The features are easy to understand, and since it has the ability to shoot video at 15 fps, it is worth buying.

Bottom Line

Overall, this Fujifilm camera provides users with high-resolution videos and pictures and is reasonably priced. It has an LCD screen and an in-built flashlight. Since it is waterproof, you can easily take images without worrying about hail, snow, or rain. This is the best cheap waterproof camera to buy or gift to your loved ones.

Best Waterproof Travel Camera:
 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT30

PANASONIC LUMIX Waterproof Digital Camera Underwater Camcorder with Optical Image Stabilizer, Time Lapse, Torch Light and 220MB Built-In Memory - DMC-TS30A (Blue)

PROS

  • Good focusing speed without any lagging
  • Has GPS integrated inside to tell you where you are
  • Has a solid build that doesn’t break it even when it drops
  • Provides you with full HD video recording with proper detail
  • Comes with impressive specifications ideal for professionals and beginners

CONS

  • Comes with automated settings that don’t allow you to set them manually

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this camera costs very little and has very handy features present inside it. The zoom lens is not very powerful, but it provides you with clear and sharp images, even in low-light conditions. The macro mode is also quite handy, and even though it has no thumb grip, handling this camera is easy for both novices and experts.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera provides users with quick access to underwater and snow photography, along with the usual scene settings. There are 12 filters present, along with a time-lapse shoot mode. With this price point, this camera has very good features, making it worth every penny. There is also a 220 MB memory present inside in case you do not have your own SD card.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is ideal for allowing you to shoot while traveling. With this device, you can switch from photo shooting to video recording instantly. It also does not require any SD card since it has an in-built memory as well that provides you with additional storage. Since it has optical image stabilization, it is good for beginners and travel enthusiasts.

Bottom Line

The Panasonic Lumix is a pocket-friendly device that can be carried easily. It has exceptional features and a good grip that makes it easy to handle. With additional storage, you can relax, even if you forget your SD card at home, and since it provides good image in low light, it is perfect for underwater photography.

Best Waterproof Compact Camera:
 DJI OSMO Action

DJI OSMO Action Cam Digital Camera with 2 Displays 36FT/11M Waterproof 4K HDR-Video 12MP 145° Angle Black

PROS

  • Front and back both have a color display
  • Durable to last for a long time without breaking down
  • Has stabilized 4K footage at 60 fps that reduces blurriness
  • Supports HDR in videos and photography for clear pictures
  • Comes with slow-motion recording perfect for your water photography

CONS

  • Battery becomes low after a couple of shots

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, the optical image stabilization on this camera is very seamless and produces results that are mind-blowing. Its rock-steady features and Osmo action remove any vibration blur or warping in your images. This is something users appreciate the most. Moreover, the large screen is also handy in controlling the settings, which many users liked.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out since it is waterproof up to 36 feet without any casing. It has a wide lens and provides you with an ultra-wide-angle viewing. This makes taking pictures of your diving, driving, or simply climbing turn out to perfect. Moreover, the clear filter on the lens can be removed for a neutral density and helps in keeping the shutter speed at the perfect rate under bright sunlight.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is the perfect buy for people who love to travel and are addicted to adventures and photography. Its compact size makes it easy for you to carry around, and since it is small, it can fit into your pocket and be handled easily. It also comes with different sets of filters, such as underwater color balance, four levels of ND, and even a polarizer, making it good for experts, as well as beginners.

Bottom Line

This DJI Osmo Action camera is a compact waterproof camera that comes with optical image stabilization in both video and photography sessions. It has a full-color front LCD, is easy to control, and can be manually set-up according to your requirements.

Best Waterproof Disposable Camera:
 Fujifilm Disposable QuickSnap

2T40461 - Fujifilm QuickSnap Waterproof 35mm Disposable Camera

PROS

  • Allows you to snap pictures without an SD card
  • Provides simple operation, making it easy to use
  • Has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for quick image sharing
  • 5x zooming lens takes pictures from a good distance
  • Tough design allows it to last for a long period of time

CONS

  • Video is only limited to 1080p
  • Rear LCD doesn’t support touch

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers state this camera is a great product with good quality. Its exterior is tough and hard to break. You can gift it to your child, as it is waterproof and can take pictures in the water which are clear and crisp. You can also snap up to 30 pictures with ease without an SD card.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out due to its good features in such a low price range. It proves to be the perfect gift for adults and kids both. It is waterproof, takes clear pictures underwater, and is of premium quality. It also has a good design and an intuitive interface, making it perfect for usage.

Who Will Use This Most

This product is ideal for adults and kids. It does not have too many controls that are hard to understand and can be used underwater when needed. It is pocket-friendly and can be carried easily. Its point-and-shoot ability are also very handy.

Bottom Line

This Fujifilm camera is tough and robust. It is waterproof and friendly on your pocket, making it great to use. However, it is not ideal for professionals, but it is perfect for kids and adults that love adventure, as it provides them with the kind of pictures they can post and use later on.

Best Waterproof Camera For Kids:
 Ourlife Kids Waterproof Camera

Ourlife Kids Waterproof Camera with Video Recorder Includes 8GB Memory Card (Blue)

PROS

  • Provides underwater photography
  • Has a good price point for a kids camera
  • Has a lightweight nature, making it easy to carry
  • Has a sturdy casing so doesn’t break if your kid throws it around
  • Comes with a manual guide that explains the features present in it

CONS

  • Has a poor picture quality underwater and on land, as well

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this is the perfect buy for kids who love to take pictures. Children like to take pictures by snatching their mother’s phone, and if your kid is like this, this is perfect for them. It is easy to use, small to handle, and very robust, so you do not have to worry about your kid dropping and breaking it. Also, if your child wants to develop memory capturing skills, this model can allow them to do so.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out due to its impressively small style and because it comes with all the features needed for a good picture. Its design is tough to beat and is ergonomic, too. The accessories present in this camera include everything you need in order to mount it on your helmet, tripod mount, or the handlebars of your cycle.

Who Will Use This Most

This device would be much appreciated and loved by children and parents. It is robust, waterproof, and easy to handle. It comes with basic functions that allow kids to take images with ease. The manual guide makes it easy to understand this product, and since it has a simple design, you can attach it to your kid’s helmet or their bicycle. Its affordable price tag won’t even make you regret it if your child ends up losing it.

Bottom Line

This Ourlife Waterproof Camera is perfect for kids and is not expensive or fragile. For this reason, it is the perfect product to introduce to your kids and allows them to bring out their artistic nature. The accessories it comes with allow them to carry it around with ease, and they can capture many memories with it.

Best Waterproof Camera Under $200:
GoPro HERO

GoPro HERO - Waterproof Digital Action Camera for Travel with Touch Screen 1080p HD Video 10MP Photos

PROS

  • Rugged design makes it a robust long-lasting device
  • Touch LCD screen allows for manual setting adjustments
  • Voice control makes it easy for you to set it by speaking to it
  • Under $200, making it affordable for your adventures
  • Image optical stabilization reduces blurriness during point-and-shoot photography

CONS

  • Does not have a time-lapse interval mode

What Recent Buyers Report

According to recent buyers, this camera is ideal for taking pictures while on adventures. The selling feature of this unit is the voice control ability. This allows you to command this camera and make it do what you want to with only your voice. It's quite smooth and easy for you to handle. The quality of the image  it promises is also very good and makes it worth every penny.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera stands out due to the USB-C port it comes with. It has an exceptional battery life and allows you to record your adventures for over ninety minutes straight. The charging doors can also be removed in order to power it continuously.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is worth buying for both beginners and professionals. GoPro is an adventure camera and is best for people who like to travel underwater or to new heights. It has a two-inch LCD that comes with a touchscreen, whereas the record button is present on the top and the menu option on its side. These features make it easy to use.

Bottom Line

GoPro’s new action camera is incredibly tough and very affordable. Apart from letting you take great time-lapse videos, it provides you with high-quality pictures due to optical image stabilization, and since it has voice control, it is very responsive.

Aspects to Consider Before Buying

When buying the best waterproof camera, there are certain features you must consider. These will help in making the camera ideal for your use and make it worth every penny. Read on to find out which features are a must-have. 

Variable Aperture

A variable aperture lens is usually printed on the camera’s body or near the lens. This aperture is shown as f/1.0-f/2.0 on the barrel of the lens. In this example, 1.0 to 2.0 refers to the minimum and maximum aperture this lens can provide you at either end of its zoom range. It is important that your camera has a wide aperture lens as this will provide you with better picture quality.

Waterproof Depth

The waterproof depth you need depends on what you will be using the camera for. If you are simply attaching the camera to the end of your surf board, it is not overly important, but if you are going scuba diving, this feature is critical as you will know if it can cover the depths easily. The best waterproof cameras can survive up to 30-meter depths easily.

Megapixels

When choosing a good camera, you must know that megapixels matter a lot. Megapixels are not everything in a camera, but they do matter. Keep in mind that the more megapixels present, the better picture quality you can enjoy.

Zoom

When looking for the perfect camera for your adventures, you first need to find what kind of zoom it provides. It is a good option to get an optical zoom, as it provides you with the details you need compared to digital zoom. This kind of zoom is worth every penny, and beyond that, anything that provides you with more than a 15x zoom is a good option. 

Video Resolution

Nowadays, 4k video resolution is cheap enough on compact cameras and provides you with clear and crisp shots and wonderful videos. Moreover, 1080p resolution is also able to provide you with a good picture; however, it all depends on how important picture quality is to you. A 720P resolution also provides you with a clear picture.

Conclusion

With the above-mentioned guide, you can find yourself the best waterproof camera easily. It walks you through the top cameras present in the market along with their best features and their disadvantages, as well. Moreover, you can find the best features present in your camera, which allows you to use a waterproof camera efficiently.

We hope this guide assists you in your buying journey and helps you find the perfect camera to use.

People Also Ask

Even with the information present in our buying guide, there are some questions left unanswered. To make it clear for you, we have answered these questions down below.

Can a Waterproof Camera Go Underwater?

Yes, a waterproof camera may have the ability to go underwater, but this depends on the manufacturer. Many waterproof cameras have a specific water depth they can survive in and anything deeper than that can harm the device. However, some waterproof cameras are only called waterproof because they can work even in drizzle, rain, and snow.

When buying a waterproof camera, make sure you find out if it can work underwater or not.

Are DSLRs Waterproof?

Unlike compact cameras, many DSLR cameras are not safe for taking underwater without any kind of protection or housing over it. Even though manufacturers claim the cameras are weatherproof, weather-sealed, or weather-resistant, that does not make them waterproof.

Are Nikon Cameras Waterproof?

Nikon does produce waterproof cameras and their devices can survive water up to 100 feet depths easily. They are also shockproof up to seven feet and even freeze-proof down to -10 degrees Celsius. Make sure you find out if your Nikon camera is waterproof before buying if this is a feature you need.