Underwater camera recommendations 

You love diving, and you have an interest in underwater photography, but you don't know where to start to choosing an underwater camera? 

Hopefully this little guide will help you and if you have more precise needs, don't hesitate to book a private session, so we can work on a solution tailored for you. (this session is included for free if you book any of my workshops)

My recommendation if your budget is tight, and you are not sure underwater photography is for you or not : GoPro Hero 10 or 11

If your budget is limited, but you still want to capture decent images and videos underwater, a GoPro camera could be a great choice. The GoPro HERO 10 and 11 models are both affordable options that offer a wide range of features for capturing high-quality underwater footage. Both cameras are waterproof and can be used up to 33 feet (10 meters) without a separate housing, though I highly recommend you get the underwater housing.
Overall, a GoPro camera is a great choice for anyone looking for an affordable and versatile option for capturing underwater images and videos.

Recommended accessories

GoPro protective dive housing

A handle with a lanyard

  Dual Battery Charger + Enduro Batteries  

A micro SD card of at least 32GB, but 64GB or 128 GB would be ideal 

The dive housing is necessary for depths greater than 10 meters, the handle provides a comfortable grip, the lanyard secures the camera, extra batteries increase photo and video capture time, and a high-capacity micro SD card eliminates storage concerns.

The total budget for a GoPro Hero 11 kit should be around €600.

More accessories to improve the rig further

Red filters 

A tray, handles and video lights

A macro lens to get closer to smaller subjects

  Wide Angle Lens for Action Cameras  

The red filters improve the colors when taking photos or videos in natural light up to 10–15 meters deep, the video lights enhance the overall image quality and colors, the macro lens allows for closer shots of smaller subjects, and the wide-angle lens allows for a broader field of view in your shots.

My recommendation if you are serious about your underwater photography journey but are still constrained by your budget : The Olympus TG-6

The Olympus TG6 is a rugged and versatile digital camera that is designed for use in a variety of challenging environments, including underwater photography. This camera features a waterproof and shockproof design, making it a great choice for capturing stunning photos and videos in and around the water. The TG6 also boasts a fast f/2.0 lens, 12 megapixel sensor, and advanced imaging features such as RAW capture and 4K video recording, allowing you to capture stunningly detailed and vibrant images and videos no matter what the conditions. Overall, the Olympus TG6 is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a high-performing and durable camera for underwater photography.

Recommended accessories 

  Olympus TG-6  Underwater Housing 

  Olympus TG-6 & Mini Flash 2 Underwater Photo Package from Backscatter

  M52 Underwater 0.50X 120° Wide Angle Wet Lens  

Backscatter complete underwater photography kit for the TG-6

To capture stunning underwater photographs, I highly recommend the Olympus TG-6 camera paired with an underwater housing that allows for depths of up to 45 meters. Enhancing your image quality even further, consider investing in a tray, arm, and strobe. The complete kit costs around €1500, but for even more impressive wide angle shots, consider adding a wide angle wet lens for an additional €500. For the ultimate underwater photography experience, consider investing in the complete kit for around €3500. (obviously, I also recommend you get extra memory cards and spare batteries)

If you are serious about your underwater photography journey and budget isn't an issue : Canon R5 / Nikon Z9 / Canon A1

Canon R5

Nikon Z9

Sony A1

There are plenty of options available on the market, but if you really want the best in terms of image quality, dynamic range, resolution, good high ISO sensitivity and great autofocus, these 3 full frame mirrorless are in my opinion your best options in 2023

For wide angle, I would recommend a fish eye lens for a better corner sharpness even in smaller dome ports

Canon Fisheye  EF 8-15mm, also works great on the Sony A1 with an adapter.

Nikkor 8-15mm Fisheye lens

Those rectilinear wide angle zoom lenses are great, but require a large dome port (230 mm minimum) for decent sharpness in the corners

Canon RF 15-35mm f/2.8

Nikkor Z 14-30 f/4 s 

Sony 16-35 f/2.8

Best macro lenses


  NIKON Z MC 105MM F/2.8 VR S  


From experience, I can recommend those two brands for your underwater housing : Isotta and Nauticam

Isotta is an Italian brand, with a wide selection of very well-made housings and ports with double o-rings, and is a bit more budget friendly than Nauticam.

Nauticam is a brand from Hong Kong, it has the widest range of housing and ports available on the market, as well as innovative underwater optics. 

Some strobe options

Sea & Sea YSD3 MKII

Inon Z-330

  Retra Flash Pro X  

Scubalamp D-MAX Strobe

This guide is obviously a simple one and there are many more options available out there, the best to get a tailor made kit for your requirements would be to book a private session with me to help you build the best kit for your needs.

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