Rugged camera (Nikon AW1? TG-2? older dSLR?)

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
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Alphoid
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Rugged camera (Nikon AW1? TG-2? older dSLR?)
11 months ago

I'm considering buying a camera I can use around and in the swimming pool, for roughhousing with kids, and similar. A Sony RX100, ruggedized, would be ideal, but such a beast does not exist.

Choices I've thought about:

  • Continue to use an old dSLR body I own which I don't mind destroying. Cons: I can't have it with me the whole time. It's likely to get stolen. It doesn't work under water, so I can't swim with it in the pool. Requires two adults around kids (one for the kids, one for the camera).
  • Nikon AW1. Pros: Large sensor. Cons: Paradoxically slow lens - two stops slower than my RX100. Will this actually outperform a much cheaper TG-2 or WG-3 (small sensor, but fast lens)? Will the photos be acceptable? Will this be usable, or will the lack of manual controls bug the heck out of me?
  • TG-2/WG-3. Pros: Fast lens. Relatively inexpensive. Cons: Last time I owned an Olympus tough camera, many years back, the photo quality was not acceptable. Has this improved? Is Pentax better?
  • Wait and see if there is an AW2, or other competitor.
  • Upgrade to a ruggedized camera phone.

It'd be nice, but not essential, if it was also usable for more extreme outdoors (SCUBA, skiing, etc.).

Thoughts?

Nikon 1 AW1 Pentax WG-3 GPS Sony RX100
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