How to choose an underwater housing for your digital camera

Taking pictures underwater is one of the most exciting (and challenging) photographic adventures you’re likely to undertake. When you’re playing in, on, or under the water, choosing the right equipment is critical when the only thing standing between your camera and water is a few millimeters of plastic or aluminum sealed with a sliver of an O-ring.

Whether you need a waterproof camera for snorkeling, a case for a compact digital camera, or a housing for DSLR, there are certain criteria to keep in mind when making your selection.

Waterproof your camera

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Pick the best camera for the job

There is no one perfect camera. But if you need a camera suited to a specific kind of photography, you can get the best camera for your needs by looking for specific features. Obviously, it’s not practical to buy and carry a separate camera for every possible shooting situation, but if you regularly shoot in low light, carry your gear into harsh conditions, capture portraits, or prefer to travel light, then it’s worth buying a camera tailored to your needs. Keep in mind that most of the features we mention can be had with point-and-shoot cameras, through manual controls, but a few are available only on DSLRs or compact interchangeable-lens cameras.

Low-light photography

If you like to shoot subjects in low light—whether a dark alley, a dimly lit house, the night sky, or a performance in a darkened auditorium—you’ll want to look for certain features when shopping for a camera.

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Review: Canon PowerShot SX230 HS is a solid zoom camera

The Canon PowerShot SX210 IS was one of our highest-rated pocket megazoom cameras of last year. Its successor, the PowerShot SX230 HS ($350 as of May 1, 2011), keeps its core strengths while adding a few notable features.

Big changes in the SX230 HS include the camera's 12-megapixel "HS System" CMOS sensor, which replaces the SX210 IS's 14-megapixel CCD sensor and adds high-speed shooting, enhanced low-light sensitivity, and 1080p video capture to the feature set. Following the lead of pocket megazooms such as the Casio Exilim EX-H20G, Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS10, and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX5V, the PowerShot SX230 HS also has an internal GPS antenna that geotags photos as you take them.

The sum of all those parts is a solid all-around pocket megazoom performer that offers manual controls, a selection of creative settings, and very good image quality.

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On the road with a camera, an iPad, and a Hyperdrive

A quick iPad tip: Turkish Dolmuşes—van-sized mini buses that provide inexpensive regional travel—are too shaky and bumpy for accurate typing on an iPad. I know this because I’m trying to type this while riding on a Dolmuş.

I’m heading toward the start of the Lycean way, a roughly 300-mile hike that winds through the villages of Anatolia. Because this will be a backpacking and photography excursion, I’m trying to travel as light as possible. As such, I’ve left my 13-inch MacBook Air at home, and have decided to bring only my iPad, my cameras, and a HyperDrive.

This was not an easy decision. While I knew the iPad would be fine for reading email and browsing the web, I was worried about where I was going to offload images, and whether I could do without a full photo workflow. On the upside, I knew I would be traveling with a mid-sized backpack, so the iPad’s lighter weight, and durability was a big appeal.

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Hasselblad announces the 200-megapixel H4D-200MS camera

On Wednesday Hasselblad announced its newest medium-format digital SLR camera, the 200-megapixel H4D-200MS. The professional-grade camera costs around $45,000 (32,000 Euros), which comes out to about $225 per megapixel.

The H4D-200MS is not actually packing a single 200-megapixel sensor. Instead, the camera uses Hasselblad's multi-shot technology to combine six consecutive shots taken on the camera's 50-megapixel sensor into one higher-resolution final file. The sensor is moved in 1 or 1/5 pixel increments before each photograph in order to collect the maximum amount of information for a scene.

In addition to this six-shot mode, the camera can also shoot four-shots and combine them together, as well as take regular, single-shot photographs. The multi-shot technology is for capturing still-life and product shots inside a studio, as it requires an absolutely still scene for up to thirty seconds. However, the single-shot mode can be used to capture live, moving subjects outside of the studio.

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Apple updates Digital Camera RAW for five cameras

Apple has released an update to Digital Camera RAW that adds support for five new cameras. This compatibility update, version 3.7, affects Mac OS X users running Aperture 3 and iPhoto '11.

Only two DSLRs made the cut: Nikon's new mid-level D5100 DSLR and the Samsung GX-1S. The latter is a particularly interesting addition since the camera was released back in 2006.

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