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Just posted: Our group test of waterproof compact cameras

By dpreview staff on Aug 17, 2011 at 03:05 GMT

Just Posted: Our group test of waterproof, rugged compact cameras. It's been two years since we last published a review of this class of cameras and a lot has happened in the meantime. Today's crop of rugged compacts are better specified and more competitively-priced than ever and, while most still look distinctly utilitarian, some are positively stylish. We've subjected six current models to our usual studio and real-world testing, on both dry land, and underwater. Click the link below to find our what we thought, and which cameras prevailed.

Click here to read our group test of waterproof compact cameras

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Comments

Total comments: 96
y0010842
By y0010842 (Aug 22, 2011)

I bought my Lumix FT3/TS3 two days ago and filmed a little while sailing. The reflections of sunlight on the water generated ugly vertical stripes in the video. Can someone confirm/reproduce this behavior? You will find an example on my smugmug server: http://smu.gs/nHBTYs .

0 upvotes
jlreycas
By jlreycas (Aug 25, 2011)

Looks like sensor blooming, I've got that in ZX1's video clips. Was corrected in later models. Maybe is yours a defect sample?

0 upvotes
beespeckled
By beespeckled (Aug 19, 2011)

I enjoyed this review.
I was curious that the new Kodak EasyShare Sport wasn't included? This seems to be a very budget friendly option so would be curious to see how it fared against the other cameras in the review.

Personally, I have the waterproof Samsung AQ100/WP10, released in 2010, it seems to not have been marketed very well by Samsung. (may not even be in production anymore, sad to say)

Realistic expectations are needed when purchasing a WP. Undoubtedly, I wanted good IQ, but I did not make my purchase expecting the quality of my DSLR. I'm kayaking, white water rafting, enjoying the moment, actively involved. This is where these kinds of cameras are wonderful, no matter the brand.

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 19, 2011)

Yes. I was also a little bit surprised over not to find the Kodak in this test. But Dpreview also dodged the Ricoh G700 which might be capable of challening the top for critical image quality like level of details in tree, bushes etc. Instead they went for the Ricoh PX which have next to inferior image quality. Although I knew that the Samsung AQ100 was released in 2010, I couldn't help but find it missing in this test. It was inexpensive already as knew and looked like a bargain. Slightly mixed reviews though if my memory serves me right.

0 upvotes
beespeckled
By beespeckled (Aug 19, 2011)

RE: Samsung, only reviews I could find at the time of purchase were user reviews, I think there were only 4 on Amazon. All other mentions were the product announcements. I had to base my purchase (I don't usually do this) on price and photo examples posted. The camera was not available in stores local for me to test, so it was an online purchase. I haven't checked recently, but I don't think there have been any editorial reviews on it yet.
I have found the camera a mixed bag, it has its quirks. Some truly delightful shots captured, despite blind shooting most the time in sunlight conditions due to the usual LCD problem :) For the price and my uses I'm happy with it.
I'll try to add a user review on the dpreview camera page soon.

0 upvotes
Wissett
By Wissett (Aug 19, 2011)

I got the TS-3 for my son when it first came out. It probably is the best you can get in a compact waterproof camera. Don't get one of these cameras unless you really mean to use it underwater. The results do not compare well with non-waterproof compacts.

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 19, 2011)

"The results do not compare well with non-waterproof compacts."

The top three cameras from the group test in 2009 kept more details compared to these in this test. Just look at trees, bushes and grass. http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/Q209waterproofgroup/page18.asp
I think that Pentax W60 is the best of them when it coems to keep details, since Canon D10 and after that the Panasonic TS1.

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Aug 19, 2011)

I agree with schaki. The Canon D10 is probably still better than the TS3, especially if you take photographer control with CHDK firmware. On a recent trip to Zion park, the D10 was comparable to my Fuji F550, which is not the greatest, but many P&S models are worse.

0 upvotes
Lupti
By Lupti (Aug 18, 2011)

Sorry but I wonder what a Ricoh PX you tested. I´ve got mine a while ago and to be honest, this camera sucks. Well, it is waterproof, but the pics are dull and NR destroys details even at ISO100. Also it tends to chose absurd high ISO values even in good light. Everything over ISO200 is just unusable.
Movie mode - sorry, but "sharp" isn´t a word I would use for this. It is soft as an old VHS cam, sound is hissing and digital zoom makes it worse. But the files are eating card space.
Overall both stills and video are pretty bad. Worse than my old Pentax W10.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 18, 2011)

Hi Lupti, have a look through our PX sample galleries and our comparison tests. Certainly the results at high ISO sensitivities are not stellar, but you have to remember we are reviewing these cameras in the context of the competition. The PX actually resolved more detail than the Fuji XP30, Olympus TG-810, and Pentax WG-1 in our ISO 1600 comparison:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/Q311waterproofcompactgrouptest/page9.asp

That makes it above average for the waterproof class of cameras. The results are similar in our studio comparison shots:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/Q311waterproofcompactgrouptest/page11.asp

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 19, 2011)

@ Lupti and Scott Everett.
Following comes from one, me, which usually prefer Ricohs. Mainly because of great user interface and the cameras also often offer the features I want.
I've to say that the PX samples are no good, unfortunately.
Clearly visible noise reduction artifacts at low isos and oversharped edges or straight lines. Maybe it might help somewhat to set the sharpening to low (if sharpness settings are available) and handle that in post process.
Dull output yes. Try set the white balance to cloudy.
At least that have helped me to get rid of some purple cast which otherwise could show up randomly in outdoor pictures taken with my Ricoh Caplio 500SE.

The Fuji XP30 seem to be the one with lowest noise reduction in this test but unfortunately with a thick protection glass as point out on its page. At least low noise reduction usually won't ruin fine detail in trees and bushes etc, so there might be an OK chance to recover some sharpness in post process.

0 upvotes
thanos
By thanos (Aug 18, 2011)

I own the Panasonic for a few months now and used for snorkeling and general photography.
A few remarks:
1. There is a quirk when shooting video underwater that the autofocus motor is audible in the movie. So one should turn that off. This happens because mic autolevels kick in when the environmental sound is low. The same happens in very quite environments, silent rooms etc. And there's no way to turn off mic autolevels to avoid this.
2. The supplied software PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.1 HD Lite can't show geotagged photos on a map. So you need to install Google Earth to see the locations, unlike the SONY PMB that has a tool to show geo photos using google maps and optionally correct their locations.
3. In iA mode you can't set the image dimensions to 8Mpix at 4:3. It's either unnecessarily full 12Mpx or 5mpx and lower.
4. The high dynamic mode doesn't shoot HDR photos in the traditional sense (meaning to merge multiple shots). Just shoots one pic and processes the darks to look like HDR.

0 upvotes
Peter Bendheim
By Peter Bendheim (Aug 18, 2011)

A very well deserved win for the Lumix it's a real pleasure to use and own and the image quality is outstandin

0 upvotes
K-Sat
By K-Sat (Aug 18, 2011)

I have the TX10, and while I agree with you that the aesthetics of the camera is unrivaled in the waterproof category (IMO) and the picture quality is great, I don't agree with you that the camera is "fast" or "responsive". I've found that it takes several seconds to start up and take pictures, (unlike your model which "powered on quickly") and to switch from mode-to-mode. Plus, when I end up struggling with the touchscreen, that is definitely not "fast" or "responsive". Also, the screen is so flush with the edges, that scratching the screen is easy and inevitable.

However, I agree with you that I like the fact that it slips in my pocket so easily, and that it surprises all my friends when I tell them it's waterproof (because it definitely doesn't look chunky enough to be in that class)

I've never had the other cameras in this review so I can't compare, but I can't recommend the Sony to any of my friends because of the problems I noted above...IMO, it's only "good enough".

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 18, 2011)

We agree with you that using the menu system via the touchscreen is not the camera's strong point. We were more so referring to the power-on and autofocus speeds, which at least with our copy were actually the fastest of the test. We were able to consistently power on in just over a second, and release the shutter in under a second, consistently.

0 upvotes
Ed Richer
By Ed Richer (Aug 18, 2011)

Thank you for a good review but...
don't you think it is a little late? Summer vacations are winding down here in USA since schools starts in just a few days.
I needed this review back in June when I was looking for a replacement for the Canon D-10. Maybe it was for the better since the D-10 still works very well, so I saved some money.

0 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Aug 18, 2011)

Unfortunately the publication date of this review was determined by product availability, training and other reviews, and next year we'll aim to publish this sort of content earlier in the season. I would say though that these products are useful all year round, not solely during the summer holidays. They are freeze-proof as well, remember :)

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Aug 18, 2011)

You are probably best off with the Powershot D10 anyway, especially if you install CHDK on your memory card for manual control. Comparing the ISO 200 shots at imaging-resource.com, the TX10 has more micro contrast, but worse detail in the fabrics and yarn. I-R have not yet tested the TS3, but the TX10 is already starting to outperform the TS3 at ISO 200.

0 upvotes
Tapani Tarvainen
By Tapani Tarvainen (Aug 23, 2011)

Are they really freeze-proof?
I'd actually like to see a winter-camera review, how well they work in cold, how cold they work in and for how long, how they handle exposure in snowy scenes, how controls work with heavy mitts &c.
(Canon G11 turned out surprisingly usable last winter all the way down to -30C.)

0 upvotes
Condor
By Condor (Aug 18, 2011)

Thanks to dpreview for the real-world comparison tool. It totally makes a difference to compare real cameras output, just check the trees or bushes to see what I mean.

So far I have detected two technical problems as improving oportunities. First, it does not go to "full scene mode" in my Notebook (I've tried three times). Second, the selection zone stuck in the bottom of the samples photo in my Ipad but it does go to the "full scene mode".

It is excellent tool. So good that it should be merged just in one page but with the option of sellecting different kind of side-by-side samples. I mean wide, zoomed, portraits, groups, macros, indoor, with flash,(underwater in this case), moving subjects, pets, sports, etc. etc.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 18, 2011)

This is great feedback, and we are working on optimizing the site for various devices. I have passed along your feedback to our design team. Thanks!

1 upvote
EssexAsh
By EssexAsh (Aug 18, 2011)

would of been nice to get a better idea of how the screens perform underwater. Snorkelling over the summer with my fuji was very hit and miss since you could barely see what was shown on the display.

0 upvotes
Peter Galbavy
By Peter Galbavy (Aug 18, 2011)

GPS. I like my FT3 but the GPS performance is poor. I have used Garmin bike computers for years and while the Edge 305 was ok, the 705 is excellent in acquiring a lock in city conditions. So the technology is there.

So, in future, with the increase in GPS on cameras can DPReview construct a standard set of tests for GPS - time to acquire cold/warm both in open and built-up areas ?

I also suspect battery life as quoted is affected by having GPS on (getting 10 minute locks etc.) which are not shown in the standard tests.

0 upvotes
Swordfish
By Swordfish (Aug 18, 2011)

So how did the cameras perform UNDERWATER? >:->

0 upvotes
ELachaux
By ELachaux (Aug 18, 2011)

Hi,
I just bough the TS-3 and will test it underwater both in snorkeling and with the diving housing.
I'll try to post some review and pic Md september

0 upvotes
idbar
By idbar (Aug 17, 2011)

I was wondering if there is a page missing. In the conclusions it appears that there's an actual "underwater" comparison that I never saw. Thanks!

0 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Aug 17, 2011)

WE made plenty of underwater comparisons, but did not create a dedicated 'underwater comparison' page. Or comments here are based on our experience with the cameras, and do not refer to a specific test (certainly not a 'missing' page) :)

0 upvotes
snegron
By snegron (Aug 17, 2011)

I am happy (though not surprised) to see that the TS3 came up first in all categories. I love my TS3! I still have my old TS1, but the TS3 is my new favorite. In addition to its waterproof capabilities and cool new features, what I like most is how quick it responds. I think Panasonic should take advantage of this momentum to focus on creating even more advanced waterproof cameras.

0 upvotes
Maxfield_photo
By Maxfield_photo (Aug 17, 2011)

Something else absent from these reviews is color rendition at increasing depths. At 1 meter it's no big deal, but as one goes deeper you begin to lose the longer wavelengths. At 3 meters you've lost most of the red, and at 10 meters the yellows are gone too. I'd like to know if the white balance settings in these cameras are enough to restore the color since none of them seem to shoot in RAW.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Most of the cameras are able to produce fairly accurate colors underwater with the use of flash. We actually made a point of shooting underwater scenes with virtually zero available light, so many of the photos in the galleries are taken in very dark conditions with flash turned on.

0 upvotes
2chicos
By 2chicos (Aug 17, 2011)

i wouldn't trust any of these cameras for regular in-water use. my TS2 leaked after about 4 months. fortunately panasonic honored the warranty and replaced it with a TS3. unless you absolutely need a splashproof camera or one that's good for snorkeling on a single vacation, i'd recommend against these models as the image quality and feature set are substandard given the price.

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 17, 2011)

What happened to the PX sample images? No images at all in that album.
http://www.dpreview.com/galleries/reviewsamples/albums/ricoh-px-review-samples

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Try refreshing the page, they should all be visible now.

0 upvotes
Joesiv
By Joesiv (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks for the review. I wish noise reduction was covered a bit more in this test though, especially for the Sony. I had my mind set on the Sony until i clicked to the image samples, wow what a smeary mess! Is there any lower noise reduction options?

0 upvotes
Cipher
By Cipher (Aug 17, 2011)

It appears the Sony has very poor corner sharpness. Things improve when you look at the center. IMO, the Panasonic is clearly the leader in image quaility. The Sony one step behind then everything else after that.

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Aug 18, 2011)

Yes, it's obvious that this TX10 is poor in the corners, however why does the TS3 have such lousy rendition of the mini globe at ISO 100? Everywhere else it looks better than, or as good as, the TX10.

0 upvotes
bobbidog
By bobbidog (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks a lot for this really interesting review. I do have a TS3 and to be honest: This model was the very first one that didn't leak during snorkeling when being on vacation. I used a Canon D10 - foggy screen while snorkeling (service repair). I had a Pentax w10 and a Pentax w30 - foggy screen while snorkeling (Pemtax exchanged the faulty models without any cost). The Panny did a very good job under and over water. And yes, this is the very first underwater camera i shall keep :-)

0 upvotes
BorisK1
By BorisK1 (Aug 17, 2011)

Great review, thank you so much for all your efforts!

There's one inaccuracy: In Pentax review, at the bottom of "Design / Key features", it says "28-140mm equiv lens with optical stabilization". Pentax has electronic stabilization.

Which leads to my question: Was there much difference in the effectiveness of image stabilization between the models? I've heard that Pentax electronic stabilization is quite effective, but slows down the camera, adding 2 seconds per shot - is that true?

Thank you!

Boris
'

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks Boris, we are correcting the wording.

0 upvotes
eddiegforce
By eddiegforce (Aug 17, 2011)

For a more in depth review check out the article by Lens Tip

http://www.lenstip.com/index.php?art=128

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Just read through the review, seems the author came to most of the same conclusions as we did, aside from the Olympus TG-810 rating.

0 upvotes
taintedcamera
By taintedcamera (Aug 19, 2011)

"Just read through the review, seems the author came to most of the same conclusions as we did, aside from the Olympus TG-810 rating."

Now why would that surprise anyone reading reviews here at DPR.
:)

0 upvotes
bertiebond1
By bertiebond1 (Aug 21, 2011)

think much more in depth for underwater, esp colours and such.
the take away comment for me was the ''will wait for the FT4 that goes to 18m (so handle all open water dives) and sorts out some of the handling issues" :D
as such, think will go for the D10 if can find it cheap.
thanks for the great review though DPreview guys

0 upvotes
JensR
By JensR (Aug 17, 2011)

> for all intensive purposes

This should be "for/to all intents and purposes".
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Is_the_saying_%27all_intents_and_purposes%27_or_%27all_intense_purposes%27

Also, the link at the top is to the proper test of waterproof cameras but the text says "Click here to read our group test of travel zoom compact cameras" - which probably was carried over from a previous test.

0 upvotes
Parinita Salian
By Parinita Salian (Aug 17, 2011)

Corrected the link text

0 upvotes
Klimt z
By Klimt z (Aug 17, 2011)

I had the use of a Fuji XP20 (no GPS). I never used a small P&S before. The low IQ, was obvious. I could see that the concept could be a lot of fun if it worked better. Also, we were always in extremely bright sunny conditions on the beach, sailing, snorkeling, surf, shelling, kayaking etc. Sounds like the perfect environment for this camera BUT the screen was totally washed out by the sun and glare so it was pure guesswork. To DP-Are all of these cameras almost useless in precisely the bright outdoor environment for which one would expect them to be designed??

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Of all the models, the Sony TX10 has the brightest and easiest to use screen in bright sunlight. The Olympus TG-810 has the biggest screen and it is also very bright, but less 'crisp' than the TX10's. We'd say all of the screens are usable in bright sunlight (with some difficulty), but the Fuji XP30 is the most difficult to use as it is simply not bright enough or contrasty enough to handle strong light.

0 upvotes
Simon97
By Simon97 (Aug 17, 2011)

I guess you give up image quality with water proof designs. Although the Panasonic looks best, it can't even resolve the detail of the face etching in the studio scene. Most ordinary 10mp compacts can! Some of these cameras look as bad as cell phones. IMO, they are not worth their asking price.

1 upvote
schaki
By schaki (Aug 17, 2011)

Not necessarily to give up on image quality entirely unless one need HD video in the same camera. Actually, I think that Panny FT1, Pentax W60 and Canon D10, not in a specific order, all of them figured in the group test in 2009 and have better image quality (speaking about details and noise reduction at low iso mainly) in full res than any of these in this new group test.
These models can still be found on the used market like Ebay.
Also the Ricoh G600 which uses same ccd and zoom as the Pentax W60 performs well but Dpreview dodged it for the test. Probably because it only is ranked down to 1m below the surface. But that's enough for some bath and snorkeling. This time Dpreview dodged the G700 which can go down 5m.

Inoted that Pentax and oly in that previous test had two models each and for both of them it was the one with fewer pixels which had the better image quality than their other models with more Mp. Also pointed out by Dpreview on the page for the W80.

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Aug 17, 2011)

Do the microphones shut off and seal when the cameras submerge? Do any function as hydrophones beneath the waves? Any "swimmer's ear" problems when they return to land (gurgle sounds, mildew)? What sort of audio capture is there if the camera bobs above and below the surface while shooting video?

0 upvotes
ptodd
By ptodd (Aug 17, 2011)

I have an FT1 (old version of FT3 / TS3) and the microphone does function underwater - I assume the same is true for all of these cameras. You get spikes in the audio as the camera bobs above and below the surface, nothing problematic I've noticed.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Hi Cy, in our experiences of going underwater and back to dry conditions, the sound quality was not negatively affected. We cannot report any mildew either. There might have been a slight delay in clear sound being recorded when removing the camera from the water back to above ground in some cases, but only as long as it took for any water on the camera to drain away from the microphone area. Check out this clip we took with the Sony TX10 for an example of the scenario you described: http://vimeo.com/27587938

0 upvotes
Les Kamens
By Les Kamens (Aug 17, 2011)

I replaced my wifes nikon P&S with the panasonic and she loves it...can't wait to bring it to the caribbean..

0 upvotes
SamTruax
By SamTruax (Aug 17, 2011)

Unless Sony completely changed the way they manufactured their Touch Screen I think there may be a problem with the Sony camera that was used. I have the TX5 and it works perfectly well under water. I didn't think I would like a touch screen camera but the TX5 is quick and intuitive...and can really take a beating.

0 upvotes
Maxfield_photo
By Maxfield_photo (Aug 17, 2011)

I'm in the market for an underwater camera, and being a Pentax shooter, I naturally was considering the WG-1, and out of all of them, I still think it's the only one that deserves to be called "rugged", but after this review I may also have to check out the Panasonic. But, how can an underwater camera that doesn't work underwater win a silver award? To me that's a glaring design flaw.

1 upvote
jaykumarr
By jaykumarr (Aug 17, 2011)

Well said Maxfield_photo.

The Sony should have been disqualified because of this reason or should have put in last.

0 upvotes
Franz Kerschbaum
By Franz Kerschbaum (Aug 17, 2011)

The FT3 is really nice to use under water! Easy to read screen and the buttons are big enough. (But not for gloves)

0 upvotes
Macred5
By Macred5 (Aug 17, 2011)

Notably absent from this review is some test of the reliability of each of the cameras waterproofing. My personal experience with a Sony TX5 (which seems very similar to the TX10) was that it leaked after only a few underwater uses within 6 months of purchase even though instructions were properly followed. And, to add insult to injury, Sony would not honor the warranty for water damage. My guess water intrusion failures are very common. It would be nice if there was some test you could publish that would compare how waterproof each of the models are in normal usage.

1 upvote
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Aug 17, 2011)

It would be difficult to test survival of multiple submersions over an extended period. Ten 1-minute dives to 6ft depth conducted in one afternoon would not be the same as three 1-hour dives to 35ft undertaken two months apart.

To say "instructions were properly followed" means what? Do they include freshwater cleaning after each ocean use? New gaskets every few months?

The supposed depth tolerance of the models also vary greatly. If Panasonic claims its device will survive dives to 12 meters, should it be compared to others at that depth, or at 3 meters? I suspect that leak-resistance diminishes exponentially with greater depth, even if the rise in pressure is only linear.

Some people probably buy the things as an all-purpose P&S, and don't submerge it much, if ever.

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Aug 17, 2011)

Most of the devices don't get submerged to sufficient depths on a regular basis. The performance of a model that gets employed mainly as an all-around P&S, with occasional pool play, and a single snorkeling trip, is hard to compare to that owned by a regular scuba enthusiast. The first owner might be pleased. The later might report leaks after 30 days. To build to meet the latter's needs would cost 3X what it takes to please the former. The Olympus costs the most, but how many deep dives can the reviewer afford to test its survival compared to the Panasonic? Would it matter, in the scoring, if the Oly has some other shortcoming the reviewer does not like?

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 17, 2011)

Maybe not quite full HD but at least HD1280 and interval 5 secs or longer for Ricoh G700. According to the manual on Page 45 and 58.
www.ricoh.com/r_dc/support/manual/pdf/g700/g700_en.pdf

Shame that that Dpreview have dodged these rather capable models, the G600 and G700 in their so far two group tests of waterproof compacts. Them don't go that far below the surface but are still well enough for some snorkeling. 1m down for G600 respectively 5m for the G700.
I don't know exactly what full size samples from the G700 look like as I so far Haven't found any. But I've used the G600 well enough to know that it performs much better than the Ricoh PX do in this test.

0 upvotes
ogl
By ogl (Aug 17, 2011)

very unprofessional review - the main taks of waterproof cameras - underwater use and using in extreme condition. not low light ISO IQ and work of NR.
IQ and video under water should be the main comparision. durability of body....

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

In most of the underwater shooting scenarios we encountered available light was very low, so we felt it was important to talk at length about how these cameras handled noise and color in such circumstances. If you go to the image galleries you will see a selection of underwater shots from all cameras as well.

0 upvotes
pgphoto_ca
By pgphoto_ca (Aug 17, 2011)

None with Full HD and intervalometer for Timelapse...

the only choice....the GoPro junk !!!

0 upvotes
Jaur
By Jaur (Aug 17, 2011)

Well, the pentax do have intervalometer. No Full HD though.

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Aug 17, 2011)

GoPro is blurry under water. You have to buy a >$100 "eye-of-mine" adapter to cure its myopia. It has no LCD at all, and it's hard to remember its menu codes if you don't use it all the time.

0 upvotes
pgphoto_ca
By pgphoto_ca (Aug 18, 2011)

GoPro is blurry under water. You have to buy a >$100 "eye-of-mine" adapter to cure its myopia. It has no LCD at all, and it's hard to remember its menu codes if you don't use it all the time.

I agree 100%....that's why I said....GoPro junk !!!

Why Sony or Canon can't add intervalometer for TimeLapse on those cameras? Something easy todo...

I will like todo timelapse when i do my kayak ride....:)

0 upvotes
Franz Kerschbaum
By Franz Kerschbaum (Aug 17, 2011)

Just see my experience with the FT3 here: http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1033&message=39041780

0 upvotes
korayus
By korayus (Aug 17, 2011)

I wish I could see Canon PowerShot D10 camera here too :(
I wonder how good it is with those new cameras as well...

0 upvotes
bodel007
By bodel007 (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks for the review. I think the Ricoh PX has earned a value for money win, at least here in Europe.
Sony €309
Panasonic €340
Ricoh €181 (all from amazon.de)

Also, still some work to be done with the page links:
Ricoh test pics link leads to:
http://www.dpreview.com/galleries/reviewsamples/albums/canon-powershot-sx230hs-review-samples

And (at least for me) "compared to (jpeg)" does not load.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks for the feedback, are you getting an error when trying to load the "compared to (jpeg)" page?

0 upvotes
bodel007
By bodel007 (Aug 18, 2011)

The page brings no error - the "loading" symbol does not appear at all.

I quickly compared the page code to the Compact Travel Zoom page, which does work and found that for the line:
<td class=justify>
there is no </td>
Perhaps that is the problem.
Anyhow I will look at home later using firefox.

0 upvotes
Tapani Tarvainen
By Tapani Tarvainen (Aug 17, 2011)

Somewhat disappointing review, in particular it gives very little idea of picture quality underwater - why no underwater picture comparison??! Also, Ricoh PX is criticized for poor underwater image quality because it defaults to high iso with flash! Surely that is a matter of ergonomics, not picture quality. I want to know how good pictures it produces underwater if you set low ISO manually (or in general, what's the picture quality for each camera at its best - ergonomics are a separate issue).

And I can't help marveling how Sony can be so praised when it's in fact all but useless in the target environment, under water.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Hi Taipani, we appreciate your feedback. Our experience with the Ricoh PX was actually quite positive, and we noted it's generally strong image quality in the review. We realize many shooters enjoy manually adjusting settings like ISO in a camera, but there are also many users who truly want to "point and shoot" (where design choices like default flash ISO settings need to be considered).

0 upvotes
ZAnton
By ZAnton (Aug 17, 2011)

The tests of the panoramas on the sea are really wrong (as for Pentax).
Even PC programs fail in 99%, because sky is blue, waves are moving and landstripe on the BG, which takes 5% of the picture vertically, is shurely far less than enough for the good stitching.

0 upvotes
BG_CX3_DPREVIEW
By BG_CX3_DPREVIEW (Aug 17, 2011)

Djesus, worthless conclusion, not saying its a worhtless test;

its all about waterproof camera's, Sony has second place, but its impossible to use under water, the second place is thanks to its good performance in dry conditions?

That is like testing a submarine in a swamp and concluding the hooverkraft is the fastest

My excuses for my frustration DPR, hope i did not offend you

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

No offense taken. We realize the seemingly illogical nature of rating a waterproof camera highly that has problems being operated underwater. But we really put some thought into the range of scenarios these cameras would be used in (and how often), and we believe that above-ground image quality and usability are of primary importance. Additionally, the Sony TX10 is perfectly usable underwater, you simply need to decide what shooting mode you prefer beforehand, which is something most users will likely determine within a few hours of buying the camera. Also, in using these cameras underwater, we noticed the act of swimming and composition required most of our attention, and thus we were not interested in fine-tuning menu settings with any of the cameras while in the water. Nonetheless, thanks for the feedback!

0 upvotes
ogl
By ogl (Aug 17, 2011)

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/Q311waterproofcompactgrouptest/page11.asp
rather strange - Sony has rather bad IQ....Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS3 is number 1. Pentax WG-1 is the second...IMO. Strange. Why Sony Cyber-shot TX10 is silver award.

0 upvotes
schaki
By schaki (Aug 17, 2011)

Nice to see this review. What surprised me somewhat are how Panasonic somehow managed to get away their mass destroying of fine detail which is quite obvious in the landscape picture on its page http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/Q311waterproofcompactgrouptest/samples/panasonicts3/camerapage/wideangle4.jpg

To me it seem like it is these landscape-scenes which trigger the noise reduction to go mad as it otherwise do just about OK for less. In the daylight-comparison it manages to handle fine-detail in the trees better.

Well. For me there is no winner in this test. Regarding image quality, They all suck in one way or another and loses out to my Ricoh Caplio 500SE which only are let down by crappy white balance that can be dealt with by setting WB to cloudy/overcast.
The point is that white balance can be dealt with afterwards if it would be any need. But for inferior noise reduction that can't be turned off in a menu, there are no easy fix.

0 upvotes
ZAnton
By ZAnton (Aug 17, 2011)

Grass and foliage are the MOST dufficult things to resolve. All panasonic's rivals are barely good to resolve stones and much bigger objects. So believe me, all other cameras will give much much worse results.
For direct IQ comparison see the studio shots or "real life".

P.S. Even my Canon 350D + Tamron 17-50 f/2,8 or Olympus EP-1 + 14-42 kit can not always give good images of grass. So I think compacts will never do it properly.

0 upvotes
zstan
By zstan (Aug 17, 2011)

I think there's a typo for TX10? It's using a CMOS sensor right? Not a CCD...

0 upvotes
Focx
By Focx (Aug 17, 2011)

I'd love to see a detailed comparison and field test of enthusiast/professional DSLR (Olympus, Pentax, Nikon etc.) splash and dust proofing. It's great to have it mentioned in the reviews but it would be even better to see it tested in typical situations (fog, rain, changing temperature, snow, salt water etc.)!

0 upvotes
Almeida
By Almeida (Aug 17, 2011)

The group test has a score in the right bar (57%)...

0 upvotes
Richard Shih
By Richard Shih (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks for pointing that out. I've gone ahead and fixed that.

0 upvotes
eddiegforce
By eddiegforce (Aug 17, 2011)

Waterproof specs on the 1st. page are incorrect for the metric conversion on the Olympus and Panasonic. Olympus 10 m should read 33 ft. Panasonic 12 m should read 39 ft.

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks eddie for the catch, we'll update it ASAP.

0 upvotes
Plasmoic
By Plasmoic (Aug 17, 2011)

daylight and low-lights comments identical?...or is it only a glitch

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

This has been updated, thanks for pointing it out.

0 upvotes
davidonformosa
By davidonformosa (Aug 17, 2011)

The absence of a Canon camera in the test group means that Canon really needs to update its waterproof camera models.

0 upvotes
Jim Lowell
By Jim Lowell (Aug 17, 2011)

Thanks for these reviews. Good job. Now to decide...

3 upvotes
jody rondonuwu
By jody rondonuwu (Aug 17, 2011)

MichaelKJ, LOLOLOL!! :D

0 upvotes
MichaelKJ
By MichaelKJ (Aug 17, 2011)

I assume "Click here to read our group test of travel zoom compact cameras" is left over from a previous review.

0 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Aug 17, 2011)

Ah drat, yes it is. Sorry about that! It will be fixed asap. In the meantime, the link should go to the right place :)

0 upvotes
Desert Cruiser
By Desert Cruiser (Aug 17, 2011)

Is there a reason you guys haven't done anything on the GoPro camera?

0 upvotes
Scott Everett
By Scott Everett (Aug 17, 2011)

We traditionally have not done extensive reviews of video cameras (amateur or professional class) but as video is becoming more and more popular and refined on almost all digital cameras, we plan to expand the level of content in this area in the coming months.

0 upvotes
Desert Cruiser
By Desert Cruiser (Aug 18, 2011)

Thanks Scott, but don't forget that the Go Pro also is a 5 megapixel camera and even has a time lapse option.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 96