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Old 18-10-2009, 11:59   #1
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What Video or Still Camera Do You Use?

I thought I'd start this thread to see what cameras are liked most for a boat / travel. I know some will have big expensive cameras and others small cameras that fit in a pocket but I'm really curious to see what you guys are using.

What video or still camera are you using?


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Old 18-10-2009, 12:47   #2
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Olympus Stylus 1050SW, shockproof, waterproof (takes pictures underwater down to 3m), will allow 30 seconds of recording, fairly simple to operate...about 2"x3" with good viewing area, good battery life. I've dropped in on the dock, in the water, getting out of the car. No affiliation.

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Old 18-10-2009, 14:32   #3
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Good thread topic, I hope to read lots of well thought out responses.

Years ago I adapted the point and shoot digital small format camera. For my use this was super. I could see the results instantly, store them on the PC and not have to have film developed (or buy film) and could easily crop the image. I loved the cost and flexibility and the immediacy of them. It was a 1MP then 3MP the 5MP Olypus and now I am using a 7MP Panasonic Luminex.

The larger LCD is handy, but the files are getting quite large and to send them I have to save copies in a reduced file size.

It does short vids, which I have used on occasion, but have not mastered this. I've never had a dedicated video camera.

I find exposure control the main problem. I have difficulty with it in some light situations. I am not sure if it is my fault (not know the technology) or if the technology itself is limited. I get a fair amount of poorly exposed or out of foocus shots. But I get many that are wonderful too.

I use it to document work, and for snap shots. I take it with me whenever I go out. I began actually doing this less as I can use my cell phone camera for this, but the quality is way down and there is no flash etc.

The worse part of digital cameras is the slow shutter speed response. You snap for a shot only to discover that the instant passed before the shutter opened to grab it. I think you don't have this problem with the high end SLR cameras.

I don't baby the camera, but I don't manhandle it either. It's held up for years. I like the wide angle feature, in favor of longer telephoto focal length.

I can't even imagine what 14 MP might be like. But the compact size is a real plus and these point and shoot digitals have lots to offer. I think they're great.
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Old 18-10-2009, 15:00   #4
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We currently have a Nikon D70s digital SLR, which is great for being arty and taking technical photos, but I worry about exposing it to the harsher conditions, so we're currently looking at buying a Canon D10 point and shoot type digital camera.

The Canon D10 is a shockproof, waterproof point and shoot digital that will hopefully stand up to the rigours of boating and still take good pictures. It seems to get good reviews from the photography crowd for its technical abilities as well as its ruggedness. I'd be happier taking such a camera more places (like going ashore in the dink, on the leeward side deck, etc) so we're more likely to take photos rather than not because the camera might get splashed or something.
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Old 18-10-2009, 16:27   #5
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We bought two cameras away with us: Olympus Stylus 1030 waterproof lie. Thats a crappy camera that needs underwater housing. Failed after 4 immersions and is now useless and we can't get it fixed as we are cruising.

Our great buy was a Cannon 40D SLR. Its shoots 9 photos per second

When you are cruising you really need the best when it comes to cameras. The small take anywhere camera with propper underwater housing, and the big pro camera for wildlife and action.

The dolphin photo above is a crop of the original pic taken from about 200 meters away. The full width pic is attached. Try gettong that quality, or even getting the shot, on a little camera.
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Notes on a Circumnavigation.

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Old 18-10-2009, 17:26   #6
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I use a Canon EOS Rebel XTi. Love it. And I agree w/Mark...if you're really looking for some good, high quality, high-res shots - you pretty much just have to get a good camera. The latest few generations of digital SLRs have a really nice mid-range price point for the amateur/amateur-pro photogs. Bodies averaging maybe 500-600 bucks, and on up from there. Of course, there are good cameras for a lot less, and you can spend WAY more...but from my research, and now experience, these cameras offer nearly all of the same functions the higher priced professional series do, aside from maybe a couple frames per second slower (which is most often used in sports or high-speed situations...or catching dolphins mid flight- Nice shot btw ) or a little lower megapixel rating, and the bodies aren't quite as durable r.e. material build. Still very tough though.

I also use a small Canon 400D that fits nicely in my pocket for shoreside shots if I'm just out running around or whatever and happen to see something worth shooting. It does a great job, but not near the res, image control etc. of the big one.

Oh, and if you go the Digital SLR route - don't cheap out on the lenses...the better lenses are worth every penny you'll spend on them. They can make or break a good shot - no matter the quality of the body itself.

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Old 18-10-2009, 17:42   #7
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Every spring I lead a ten-day sea kayak expedition down in Baja California Sur, and I strap an Olympus 850 SW (shockproof, waterproof & stabalized) to the foredeck bungies. I've lost track of how many times that machine has been through waterfights, Eskimo rolls, et cetera. Just make certain to purchase the bright yellow float strap accessory. And the neoprene case.

We carry all the fresh water we use on the trip, so there's no excess for rinsing off cameras. If it gets dropped in the sand, and it does, I just rinse it in salt water and keep on using it. No problems so far.
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Old 18-10-2009, 17:55   #8
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Had the Olympus 850 SW first..but didn't rinse it with fresh water after being in the salt water so it died.

Although was dissapointed with the "olympus lie" we bought the newest one hoping the upgrade would help. Olympus Stylus Tough and while it's still fairly new, so hard to say for sure about the waterproof housing, we are loving it. It's a 12 megapixel so can take some very high resolution photos and has some nice new features such as panorama, etc.,

The Nikon d40 and d90 are excellent options also if you want a digital slr, and depending on how high tech you get, you can buy various lenses to improve your photos further.
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Old 18-10-2009, 18:00   #9
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I just bought a Canon D10 that Knowsark was discussing. It is excellent for what it is, water proof to ten meteres, shockproof and coldproof. The waterproof thing is a great feature and allows you to be able to whip it out in rain squalls or when water sis spraying over the dingy. You can drop ti in the sand at the beach, rinse it off in salt water and still be in the game.

It also has plenty of those features that a lazy guy like me will never use since I almost exclusively use the basic program mode., but they are on the camera for those who care to bemore creative.

You can buy also a kit to add more memory that also comes with a small portable tripod, and three different lanyards for carrying the camera, (one for caribeneers, one for the wrist and another for a shoulder harness.) plus several other items like a memory card stick, a computer to cameral function and a case The kit costs about $50 and I am glad I got it. The whole package was about $350 on ebay.

I previously had the Olympia pentax point and shoot that was waterproof but it just quit after five years of use. It was slimmer than the Canon D10 but it seems the quality of the photos is better with the D10. I originally wanted to replace the Pentax with their new model but the reviews for it were not very flattering and all the reviews were positive with the Canon, so my decision was easy.

It is small, so stability is an issue although they advertise it has some capabilities built in to assist with stability, and as several of the posters has observed, you can not get the kind of photos with it that you can with the bigger, better and pricier cameras, for example, I will never get those kind of dolphin shots that Markj (?) posted. I hope I got the attribution for the photos correct, if not I apologize. I wuld like to have a nicer digital SLR for just that reason but I know I would never use it enough, or spend enough time learning to use it well enough to get those really superior shots or to justify the expense.
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Old 18-10-2009, 23:49   #10
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We carry both the good and the not so good for all the reasons mentioned. I don't mind beating gear up a bit but if the spray is flying the good say in their cases.
I buy em to use them however so they have been everywhere and are not left at home...Usually 3 to 4 camera on-board..ya just never know whats going to come up or go down...

Nikon D70s
Fuji S2 pro
Canon XL-1s

Canon power shot
Kodak ???
Canon zr300 ( auto focus died.. will be replacing it with a Sanyo VPC-WH1)
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Old 19-10-2009, 01:20   #11
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Camera, conditions?

Could you tell us the camera used for those lovely shots, and maybe comment on how they were taken?
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Old 19-10-2009, 12:49   #12
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Thanks for the compliment Boracay...

First one was with the you know telephotos tend to scrunch things together and stealing depth so I wanted the background to blur and retain as much of it as I could was a very bright day around Noon time which is a tough light..I choose aperture priority so I could keep the lens fully open for the Blur and let the camera chose the shutter speed ..If I remember corectly it was around 1200 to was up there. I was very happy with the way it turned out.

The second is with the Kodak Easy share whatever camera..(150.00) of those wet and wild days the good ones stay put away.

It's just set on a programed sport setting... and as has been mentioned by others you have to antisipate the shot or you will miss it..not hard to do with a little practic.

I enjoy seeing/watching other people enjoy my pictures of them... it is what makes it fun for me...I photograph soccer for that reason alone mostly.
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Old 19-10-2009, 13:22   #13
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Finally something I can answer!


I have been asking so many questions on this board and I really want to contribute... And this is something I can answer!!

I am a director and photographer when Im not dreaming about cruising! For video I would for sure direct anyone to the SANYO Xacti VPC-CA9 here is a test video I did for the camera... . look at the HD version.

There is no better camera on the market for the 100 bucks you pay for it!

For my still Camera I use the Nikon D300! Its works great in low light as you can see in the photos below.. these are production stills for a commercial I shot in Paris. As you can see it does great in low light for those sunset photos and the "Magic Hour" shots...awesome colors ... No photoshop needed.

The nice thing about this camera is that if you are not a professional you can set it on Program mode and shoot some pretty good stills.

ill be using a Red One for my circumnavigation ... but that a whole different animal!

El V
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We won't know 'til we get there!
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Old 19-10-2009, 13:48   #14
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Old 19-10-2009, 15:01   #15
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Originally Posted by El Vagabundo View Post

ill be using a Red One for my circumnavigation ... but that a whole different animal!

El V
I have a Red One, and other various broadcast cameras. I'll be buying two of the new Scarlets soon, Jim should have the release announcment in the next week or two. A producer budy is shooting his feature next month on a prototype Epic.

A Red One on a boat is a pain in the ass, the cam is a major pain in the ass on land, it takes major support, overheats all the time in the sun etc! I highly suggest a new smaller Scarlet, easy to support, less power to operate, smaller, lighter and the images are better then a Red One, well not on the 3k Scarlet but on the 5K & 9K Scarlets.

Your going to have one hell of a time with a Red on a long cruise, been there.

Also Red One has serious IR problems in the sun, you can use hot plates and IR mirrors to make it better but I'd think twice about a Red One on a sailboat.

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