Any reviews on the Sealife DC2000?

Started Dec 26, 2016 | Discussions thread
biedrzyk New Member • Posts: 5
Re: Any reviews on the Sealife DC2000?

Here are my initial thoughts about DC2000. Note that I'm only casual photo shooter
So I brought home both TG-4 and DC2000 for closer comparison.
DC2000 is newer design, just released end of 2016.

We all know based on spec that:
DC2000 has larger 1" sensor vs. 1/2.3" TG-4
DC2000 has F/1.8 vs. F/2 TG-4
DC2000 has resolution of 20Mpix vs 16Mpix TG-4
DC2000 can record 1080p/60fps vs. 1080p/30fps TG-4

And you can see better resolution if you zoom in on your picture. Not sure if it is any beneficial in typical shots.
Both cameras are waterproof without the housing, have RAW and pretty good WB adjustment (including red overexposure), that can be preset for easy access underwater.
Same size, weight, battery life, turn on time, etc.

What I specifically like about DC2000 is:
- underwater housing with big piano keys controls (except locking mechanism)
- slightly better low-light pictures compared to TG-4
- manual control over aperture, shutter speed. TG-4 has only 3 f-stops
- manual control over WB adjustment in full color spectrum

What I don't like about DC2000 is:
- control buttons quality (camera itself, not housing). They feel soft, no clicks, like were broken or soon to be broken
- rotary selector is too small and stiff. I used my finger nail to change position.
- I also needed to use my finger nail to open the housing. Really you need a screwdriver.
- housing's video button require some hand adjustment to reach. Especially for those with small hands.
- stills AF speed. This thing is slow. Sometimes in low-light cond. it goes up and down several times while TG-4 picked up right away.
- video AF speed. Even worse. Very slow. On top of that your recording picks focus mechanism noise. There is an option to turn off AF completely, but then in order to refocus you need to restart the recording. So in underwater landscape shooting, if suddenly a shark crosses your FOV, you're out of luck.
To give some excuse I've just learned that even regular cameras like RX100 line, mirrorless or DSLR have AF annoying delays
- video exposure auto adjustment is noisy and causes video hiccup. Video just skips once or twice. This is not acceptable.

Tg-4 cons:
- proprietary USB connector
- small sensor 1/2.3
- 3 fstops
- no stills during video recording
- 1080p @ 30fps.

TG-4 pros:
- better build quality,
- menu is more intuitive
- you can overexpose reds for deep water diving as well (aka red filter). I though it was DC2000 only feature.
- is quieter and faster. This is more important in changing underwater conditions. Usually there is no time to play with manual adjustment or tripod.
- Wide angle lens or fish eye can be installed on either Olympus camera or housing, while DC2000 has thread only on a housing. and FCON-T01 for Olympus is cheaper than Sealife SL975.
- you can buy Olympus camera or housing separately, while DC2000 comes always as a package. Not talking eBay market. So if you damage camera or housing, you can repurchase what you need.
- insane macro capability
- HDMI output
- GPS tracking, compass, depth gauge (minor features, not sure if still working in a PT-056 housing). Keep in mind to turn on GPS only once a while, since it drains battery even the camera is off.
- zoom 3x ? ok, but I'm almost never going to use it
- popularity and Olympus brand

So all that better DC2000 spec numbers, kind of faded away after several days of amateur hands-on usage. Honestly I was expecting much better picture quality in low light conditions.
I haven't tested Oly PT-056 housing yet, but I'm going to get one.
One thing for sure - GoPro3 with red filter is still better video option.
Also thinking about upgrading Gopro3 to 5 or Garmin Virb for better overall quality and control. Both video and stills. Now they have WB control as well.
DC2000 will most likely be returned.
TG-4 - I don't know. It stays for more testing in a housing and then decide.
It is time for TG-5, isn't it?

After all both cameras are P&S, so maybe I'm expecting too much.
Hope it helps somebody... or confuse more

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