G-Series (or other P&S) recommendations for underwater
I'm not a good enough diver to use a full blown DSLR, and I don't dive often enough to justify the cost of a DSLR underwater housing anyway.
My G7 does a good job, but it doesn't shoot RAW. I was looking at the G11/12 because the housings for those cameras can be had fairly cheap on Ebay.
I don't know that much about P&S cameras, so your thought are appreciated.
I had 2 P&S underwater cases but after choice to buy another one for newer camera I noticed GoPro is about same price and comes with underwater case. So I went with that and lot more happy with that. At same time it's kind of backup.
Only downside is that's pretty much automatic and you can only start/stop recording. But otherwise pretty good quality with higher frame rates and resolution combination than most Canon P&S. It also doesn't really suffer from CMOS wobble effect like most under vibration or fast movement.
i have a g15 with a fantasea case. The case is much better than the canon case with many upgrades. double oring, leak detector and others. go check out fantasea. They also have cases for the g16. There is very little difference in the shooting modes the fantasea can do that the more expensive cases can also do.
I had a G9 with Canon underwater housing. The underwater housing worked great, but I was not happy with the picture quality of G9. G9 thru G12 used the 1/1.7" CCD sensor. It's strange to read that G7 is fine except it does not support RAW, becasue the IQ of G7 thru -12 is not that great, RAW or JPEG. I ended up using Pentax Optio WG-series "waterproof" camera, because it is hassle-free (no housing req'd) and IQ was better than G9 with housing.
If you are diving deep, then by all means get an underwater housing. But if you are snorkeling, or not diving deeper than 50 ft, then I suggest you look into newer "waterproof P&S", e.g., Olympus Tough TG2 (less than $350 new).
I just printed a 20x30 canvas from the G7, and I was stunned with how good it looked. (I didn't want to print it that big, but the client insisted. I do use a really good up sampling technique though. )
I'll look at the Olympus. I'm not married to Canon on this.
I just noticed the diving deep part. 85 feet is the deepest I've been, but 50 feet is pretty common.
Either the G11 or G12 would be fine. I used the G7 for 2 years when it was released before moving on to a DSLR. My friend and dive buddy has been shooting with the G11 in an Ikelite housing for several years and routinely gets great pictures.
With ikelite housings you can use wired strobes, with Canon or Fantasea housing you would use optically synced strobes. Or if you are only shooting macro then the camera flash may be sufficient.
The only G camera I would not recommend for underwater is the G!x. I tried this camera in an Ikelite housing with dual strobes and found it not as flexible as a DLSR. There is no TTL when shooting in manual, and there is a delay between shutter press and flash response. Using optical sync strobes would have eliminated that problem
I have a GoPro Hero2 that I'll take down as well, but I don't think it's a replacement for a good P&S. I've actually sold work from that G7. I'll probably just mount the GoPro somewhere and let it run video for the whole dive.
WOW! I didn't expect to encounter so many divers. This is great.