Camera Options for Galapagos (including underwater) and Amazon

Started 9 months ago | Discussions thread
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Chefski
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Camera Options for Galapagos (including underwater) and Amazon
9 months ago

In April, my wife and I will be spending 21 days in Ecuador with time in Quito, the Amazon and the Galapagos. My primary interest is wildlife photography and underwater video while snorkeling.

I currently have the Sony a55 with the 16-50/f2.8 and the 70-400 Ver 1 and a Panasonic ZS-15. I had hoped that Sony would have announced the a77 replacement by now so I could have gotten that to use with the 70-400 and that would have been my primary setup with the a55 with 16-50 as the secondary and for landscapes.

I am not interested in the a7 or a7r with adaptors and the a6000 won't ship before we depart.

The options I am considering are:

1. Stay with what I have and simply get a waterproof housing for the ZS-15 to use while snorkeling in the Galapagos and when I return decide if I want to buy the a77 replacement (whatever that is). The risk here is that I really do not have a backup for the a55 during the trip.

2. Get the a77 now plus a waterproof housing for the ZS-15. a77 becomes the primary camera and the a55 is the backup. Stick with this setup for two years and see what is out there for future travels. Gives me two DSLT bodies plus an underwater camera.

3. Get the Sony RX-100 and an underwater housing for it. It becomes the backup to the a55 and it provides a much better underwater camera compared to the ZS-15. While it could act as a backup to the a55, I would lose a lot of reach since it tops out at 100mm zoom.

4. Get a NEX-3 or NEX-5 with their kit 16-50 lens plus an underwater housing and an adaptor. That becomes the backup to the a55 and with the adaptor I could use the 70-400. Underwater, it should be better than the RX-100.

I am looking for your thoughts on these options or others I may not have considered.  For stills, I shoot in RAW so whatever I get, I want that capability.  Long range, I would like to stay with the Sony A-mount cameras with two bodies plus an everyday walk-around camera with some reach.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and suggestions.

 Chefski's gear list:Chefski's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS15 Sony RX100 Sony SLT-A57 Sony a77 II Sony 70-400mm F4-5.6 G SSM +3 more
Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony SLT-A55 Sony SLT-A77
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