My choice for a digital camera is the Canon S45. It is a 4
megapixel compact camera, with multiple modes including full manual.
It has 3 times optical zoom and a reasonably fast lens (for a
digital) at F2.8.
There are bigger cameras in the market with faster lenses and
more options but I specifically wanted a reasonably compact unit
that I could use both above and below the surface.
I find the interface for the unit quite intuitive and have not
had any major problems. That being said, some people have complained
about the central "set" switch on the multi-controller but
personally I don't have a problem with it.
The full specs can be found
You'll see from the pictures that the Canon doesn't have any
adapter threads for filters etc on the lens housing. A possible
problem above water but underwater all adapters/accessories need to
attach to the underwater housing anyway.
I use a 256Mb CF card for in camera storage. In fact, the larger
the card the better! In general I find that I can easily fill a 128MB card on
a single dive shooting RAW format and I would rather have too much
space than too little. The Canon will also take micro-drives, but I
haven't had the opportunity to try one. Generally, I will shoot with
one card on the first dive, swap to another for the second (
download the first to storage - see details
here) and re-use the first card on the next dive etc.
The battery is a Li-Ion proprietary unit supplied via canon.
Certainly does me for a couple of dives with the internal flash set
to minimal (see details on the strobe page).
Recharging takes around 60-90 minutes. I have 2 batteries with one
on charge all the time.
- A beautifully machined body with good weight.
- Nice lens.
- Multiple settings manual/automatic.
- Intuitive controls.
- No "hotshoe" for external strobe.
- No true TTL facility.
- Macro is only just acceptable without accessory