Underwater compact camera that shoots raw?

Started Jun 12, 2013 | Discussions thread
GordonBGood
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,271
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Re: RAW looks worse on cheap cameras
In reply to tkbslc, Jun 12, 2013

tkbslc wrote:

If you are thinking one of the sub $300 tough compacts, then RAW would not be a benefit. You'll end up having major CA, distortion and noise in every single photo. JPEG + autocorrections are a good thing on these cameras.

I agree with you that you won't likely be able to do much using raw that isn't already corrected with the in-camera JPEG engine as far as lens imperfections such as vignetting, distortion, and Chromatic Aberrations (CA) go, but noise might not be too bad for lower ISO sensitivities up to about 400 or 800 without the in-camera Noise Reduction (NR).

Anyway, to answer the OP's question of which underwater cameras support raw, the easiest and least expensive would be to use the Canon D10 or D20, both of which were toward the top of reviews for such cameras, with the free CHDK firmware add-on which should allow these cameras to output raw DNG files.  Of these two, the D20 is probably preferred being newer and using a CMOS Back Side Illuminated (BSI) sensor, which should be of lower noise than the older CCD sensor used by the D10, although the D20 has quite a bit slower lens wide open at f/3.9 as compared to the D10's f/2.8, meaning that higher ISO's may need to more often be used with the D20 than the D10 in order to stop motion blur.

Other than that, any camera that has raw output could be used underwater by using it with a waterproof housing, with larger sensored cameras preferred as underwater generally also implies low light, so the suggestion of a Sony Rx100 and underwater housing with its large 1" sensor may be a good one although at a much higher cost.

Regards, GordonBGood

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