My Favorite Waterproof, Shock Resistant Camera: Olympus TG3

 

Heaps Canyon - by Amy White

Heaps Canyon in Zion National Park. Lighting in slot canyons is notoriously difficult. In this shot, the foreground is very dark, but I have light coming in from behind Aaron. The TG2 did a great job of metering for both situations. I did add light saturation while editing this shot.

 

I love photography.  I’m not a good photographer, but I take a lot of pictures and occasionally get something worth sharing.

I do a lot of canyoneering (hiking, rappelling, swimming and climbing in narrow slot canyons) and water sports and can’t always take along my big, bulky SLR camera.  Recently I’ve had a lot of friends ask me about camera’s after seeing some of my pictures on Facebook.

I gave up on regular point-and-shoot cameras years ago and only use waterproof cameras.

My cell phone is handy, but the quality of a good point-and-shoot camera is still significantly better.  My camera is small enough to fit in my purse and I take it virtually everywhere.

My nephew didn't want to go under the water, but as soon as I pulled out the camera and started taking underwater pictures his whole attitude towards swimming changed.

My nephew didn’t want to go under the water, but as soon as I pulled out the camera and started taking underwater pictures his whole attitude towards swimming changed.

 

Today, I’m having camera envy. Olympus recently came out with a new version of my current waterproof point and shoot camera the Olympus TG3.

I’m currently using the Olympus TG2 and love it! All of the pictures on this post were taken with my TG2.  It has taken a lot of abuse in the last two years and has held up better then any other waterproof camera I’ve had.

Emerald Pools - Zion National Park

Emerald Pools in Zion National Park. You can’t tell, but it was raining as I was taking this picture. It would have been really hard to use my SLR in these conditions.

 

This is my 7th waterproof camera in ten years. Yes, I’m hard on my cameras.

I’ve gone through 3 Pentax’s, one Sony and this is my 3rd Olympus. Typically my waterproof cameras last for one season. They either start leaking, get dropped a few two many times or the screen gets broken. I put them through a lot of abuse.

Flagstaff Extreme Rope Course

Flagstaff Extreme Rope Course. I love having a compact camera that is easy to use for this type of adventures. I didn’t want to lug around my SLR on the rope course.

 

Unfortunately my TG2 is still going strong, so I’m out of luck on updating. Unless my wonderful husband reads this and starts thinking about Christmas.

Garden Creek Canyon - Grand Canyon National Park

Garden Creek Canyon – Grand Canyon National Park

 

For the camera geeks like me the new version the Olympus TG3 has an f/2 lens with a 16-megappixel, 1/2.3-inch CMPS sensor, image stabilization and most importantly is rated for underwater use of up to 50 feet.

It is shock resistant to 7 feet and can handle temperatures as cold as 14F.

It also has WiFi capabilities and based on my reading connects easily to virtually any smart phone.

You can also purchase an optional telephoto, fish eye and LED light guide.

Keyhole Canyon - Zion National Park

Keyhole Canyon – Zion National Park. Canyoneering involves a lot of water. I tried taking my SLR through a canyon years ago and swore never again.

 

So to my non-geeky friends, what this means is that you’ll be able to get amazing pictures in all types of weather and low light conditions.

Most importantly the camera is supper durable and can handle a lot of abuse.

If you are looking for a new camera the Olympus TG3 is my current recommendation.  It is currently selling for $349 at Best Buy and $429 on Amazon.

Cascade Canyon - Ouray, CO

Cascade Canyon – Ouray, CO. You can’t tell, but it was freakishly cold. We are all wearing 7mm wetsuits and I still got the shakes.

 

If you want the more technical info here are a couple of reviews to consider:

Cameras.reviewed.com – Olympus TG3 Waterproof Digital Camera Review

Techradar.com – When the going gets tough, the tough get . . . an Olympus TG3

Digitaltrends.com – Olympus’ new TG3 Rugged camera may be brawny, but it has a bit of smarts packed in, too

 

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