Underwater cameras Canon D20, Nikon AW100, Olympus Tough, and Panasonic DMC-TS3
I'm in the market for a point and shoot underwater camera. I saw some comments on the specs of the D20 that tore into it for having a poor aperture rating. I really don't want the bulk of a camera housing or the price that comes along with buying a $600+ system. I wish there was a review looking at Nikon AW100, Olympus Tough 810, and Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS3, but since there isn't, let me expand...
After reading all the negatives about the D20 from commentators, it seems that going with the Nikon would be a good choice as it has many of the same features and photo ratings, but it costs a little more than $100 less.
The Tough is in a similar boat with the AW100, but I know people that have the more basic versions and really like it.
The Panasonic has a lower price, slightly better aperture at 3.3 v. 3.9 for D20, and it got the best reviews from the underwater camera reviews for 2011 conducted by dpreview.
I have a high end digital camera and needed an underwater camera. My wife bought me the COOLPIX AW100 for Christmas as a second camera. With underwater and macro capabilities, we took this camera (and only this camera) to a recent trip in Belize. I was blown away by the image quality and video capabilities. This camera was submersed for several hours in the reef water up to 20 feet each day and it remained dry inside without a single problem. I don't think you would be disappointed with this camera at this price point!
You can see some images here
and an HD video from this camera here
I just picked up a Sony Cybershot DSC-TX200V.
It's smaller and sleeker, although not quite as tough.
But it's still waterproof to 16'. So, smaller and sleeker won the day for me