Underwater housing - anyone used one?

Started Jan 28, 2013 | Discussions thread
LarsPolarBear
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Re: Underwater housing - anyone used one?
In reply to perthwestaustralia, Jan 28, 2013

perthwestaustralia wrote:

I'm going on a diving trip up to Cairns, and rather than renting an underwater camera, I was thinking of using my IXUS 95 IS and buying an underwater housing.

Has anyone used a canon underwater housing (I think I need the WP-DC29), and are they any good?

Cheers

I have used Canon underwater casings for two different cameras over the past 10 years, the last one was for a G9 and I am currently in the process (waiting for delivery) of buying one for the G1X.  I like the casings, they are a relatively cheap solution and for your camera you would not need an extra macro lens etc.

However, having said that, if you are planning to use an extra strobe (which I am not) I understand that e.g. Ikelite casings (or other more expensive ones) have better ways to attach fiber optical cables for automatic release.  On the G-Series the wheel on the back is operated through the short-cut button, which needs some getting used to, however, I am not sure about your camera.  The lens glass on my casings has never lead to any reflections or distortions of the pictures.  I also never had problems with flooding, as long as you take care of the O-ring and don't store it closed or in great heat or sun, these casing are quite reliable.  However, you need to thoroughly wash the casing after use in salt water to prevent button to get backed-in in a salt crust.

One issue with all casings is always the "fogging-up", especially when diving in tropical environments (e.g. Cairns).  Since the air on land is hot and humid and even if water temperatures are around 28 C at 30m, it will lead to fogging-up if you do not take precautions.  The Panasonic casing of my wife's camera has an extra chamber put the silica (salt) packages to dry the air inside the casing. Canon does not provide for that, but you can get these packages and stuff them somewhere between the casing and camera.  Putting an anti-fog  spray or other product onto the casing's lens glass leads often to spots on the picture. I found an easy way around it is if you have air-conditioning in your hotel room (or boat), cool down the casing within the air stream, and put the camera into the casing and close it while holding it into the air stream of the air-conditioning unit.  Since this air is cold and dry it will reduce the chance of fogging substantially without having to put anything into the casing.

Hope that helps.

Lars

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