The Best Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling

The Best Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling

The marine life you encounter while snorkeling can be just as amazing as when you’re scuba diving – at least we think so!

Of course, more people go snorkeling than scuba diving. So, we decided to find the best underwater camera for snorkeling.

While such underwater cameras are becoming more popular, it is still a pretty niche category. Thus, it took us some time to find the perfect devices. Then, of course, we had to put them through their paces.

The good news for you, though, is that we were able to come up with cameras that will be a great fit for every snorkeler out there!

Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling Reviews

Here are our top picks for the best underwater cameras:

AKASO EK7000 Waterproof Action Camera

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AKASO EK7000 4K30FPS Action Camera Ultra HD Underwater...
  • 4K Ultra HD action camera. Professional 4K 30Fps & 2.7K 30Fps video with 16MP photos at up to 30...
  • Wireless wrist remote control sports camera. With a wrist 2.4G remote, you can capture the world in...
  • Longer battery life. AKASO EK7000 action camera comes with 2 rechargeable 1050mAh batteries. Each...
  • Built-in Wi-Fi & HDMI, edit & share YOUR action in minutes. Just download App(AKASO GO) on your...
  • 100 Feet waterproof camera. AKASO EK7000 is designed to withstand extreme environments, together...

Compact, hardy, and affordable, this is everything you could ask for in an underwater camera. Best of all, this is a camera that will work in all situations, not just while snorkeling!

What We Like:
  • Waterproof: this camera is waterproof for up to 98 feet, making it more than suitable for all your snorkeling needs.
  • Great Quality: the quality of this camera is pretty impressive. You can capture 12MP photos at up to 30fps. You also get excellent video quality with up to 1080p.
  • Good Battery Life: not only will this battery last you a long time, but the manufacturers also send additional batteries that you can swap in when you are running low.
  • Multiple Shooting Modes: from burst photo and time-lapse to loop recording, you have a wide variety of shooting modes to choose from.
  • Numerous Accessories: this camera comes equipped with various mounts and tethers, making it far easier to hold during your snorkeling dip.
What We Don’t Like:
  • Lackluster 4K: the 4K isn’t all that great with this camera and the 1080p is the real star of the show.

Nikon W300 Underwater Camera

Nikon W300 Waterproof Underwater Digital Camera with...
  • Waterproof, freeze proof, shockproof and dustproof adventure camera with extra...
  • Stunning high resolution photos, 4K Ultra HD videos, Time-lapse videos, Super lapse videos and music...
  • 5x optical zoom NIKKOR lens with telephoto power and Hybrid VR image stabilization; Charging Time:2...
  • Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, eCompass, altimeter, depth gauge and more.Lens Construction:12 elements in 10...

If you want an underwater camera that can be equally as useful to snorkelers and divers, then this model will do the trick. Its user-friendly features make it a great option for novices as well.

What We Like:
  • Great Waterproof Features: if you snorkel and scuba dive, this camera is the perfect option. It is waterproof up to 100ft, ensuring that your images are safeguarded at greater depths too.
  • Good Quality Images and Video: you can capture 16MP images and record 4K video. This gives you bright, vibrant, and detail-oriented images.
  • Good Zoom Features: the 5x Optical Zoom NIKKOR Lens means that you can capture marine life without getting too close and disrupting the scene.
  • User-Friendly Controls: numerous dedicated control buttons make this camera a breeze to use when underwater.
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What We Don’t Like:
  • Can’t Shoot in RAW: if you are a more advanced photographer, you may miss the lack of RAW support.

Fujifilm FinePix XP130

Fujifilm FinePix XP130 Waterproof Digital Camera w/16GB...
  • 16.4 MP BSI CMOS Sensor
  • Waterproof to 65ft/20M, freeze proof to 14 Degree/-10 Degree, Shockproof to 5.8ft/1.75M, and...
  • Fujinon 5x (28-140mm) wide angle optical zoom
  • Bluetooth capability - the newly installed Bluetooth low energy technology allows automatic and...
  • Geo Tagging Capability - Choose whether location data downloaded from your smartphone is embedded in...

If good quality pictures combined with a durable exterior are what you are looking for, this camera more than meets these criteria.

What We Like:
  • Suitable Waterproof Features: it is waterproof up to 65ft. This is great news since you are unlikely to go too deep when snorkeling.
  • Decent Image Quality: the Underwater and Underwater Macro modes optimize image capture beneath the surface. As a result, the colors of the water and marine life are reproduced exactly.
  • Durable: this camera is shockproof, freezeproof, and dustproof. As such, you can take it on any adventure that you go on.
  • Automatic Brightness Adjustment: this feature means that the brightness of your LCD screen will match the lighting in your surroundings, making it easier to capture the images you want perfectly.
What We Didn’t Like:
  • Short Battery Lifespan: the battery lifespan on this camera isn’t great, which can be troublesome on longer snorkeling expeditions.


GoPro is the ultimate option for adventure cameras and the HERO7 is no different. If you want something heavy-duty that offers top-notch image quality, then this is for you.

What We Like:
  • Decent Waterproof Features: while this camera isn’t as waterproof as others, it is waterproof up to 33ft which makes it more than suitable for snorkeling.
  • Excellent Camera Quality: when it comes to image and video quality, you will be hard-pressed to do better than this. You get 12MP images and 4K video at 60fps.
  • Excellent Stabilization: the stabilizing features of the GoPro mean that you can capture any fish or marine life that may be zooming past.
  • Compact: this camera is incredibly small and compact. As such, it is a breeze to carry around with you, even underwater.
What We Don’t Like:
  • Short Battery Life: the battery needs to be recharged rather often, particularly when shooting or recording in higher quality modes.

Olympus Tough TG-6 Camera

OLYMPUS Tough TG-6 Waterproof Camera, Red
  • Water proof (50 feet /15 meter), dust proof, shock proof (7 feet / 2.1 meter), crush proof (100...
  • High resolution F2.0 lens, maximum 8x zoom, true pic VIII, back illuminated CMOS image sensor
  • Variable macro system comprised of 4 macro shooting modes, magnified shooting up to 1 centimeter...
  • 5 underwater shooting modes including underwater microscope, 3 underwater white balance modes
  • 4K movie and full HD 120 fps high speed movies can be recorded. Battery life - Approx. 340 Images...

This underwater camera may be quite the investment, but you get exactly what you paid for. From top-notch quality to durability, this is a camera that heads the group.

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What We Like:
  • Decent Waterproofing: this camera is waterproof for up to 15m. While this isn’t the best in the market, it works well for snorkeling expeditions.
  • Great Images: you can capture 12Mp images and 4K video with this camera. At the same time, the incredible zoom feature allows you to capture images from afar with the same level of quality.
  • Underwater Shooting Modes: you can select from Underwater Macro, Microscope, White Balance, Snapshot, and HDR to get the most immersive images.
  • Durable: in addition to be freezeproof, shockproof, and waterproof, this camera is also crushproof and able to stand up to around 100kg of weight.
What We Don’t Like:
  • Not Great in Low Light: if you are snorkeling on an overcast day or a spot with less lighting, your images may not turn out as great.

Panasonic LUMIX Digital Camera

Panasonic LUMIX Waterproof Digital Camera Underwater...
  • QUAD-PROOF TOUGH CAMERA – Made for active lifestyles, this rugged camera is waterproof (to...
  • MEGA O.I.S. CAMERA LENS - Automatically compensates for blurring caused by hand-shake movement....
  • BEAUTIFUL UNDERWATER SHOTS - The red color reproduction of Advanced Underwater Mode easily...
  • MP4 HD VIDEO RECORDING - Recording dynamic MP4 HD video in 1280 x 720p starts with the simple push...
  • 220MB BUILT-IN MEMORY - When the camera's SD card is full, built-in memory automatically provides...

If you are looking for a point-and-shoot camera that helps to cover up any errors, this model is a good buy. It is particularly useful for novices.

What We Like:
  • Suitable Waterproof Feature: waterproof up to 26 feet, making it more than suitable for snorkeling.
  • Decent Camera Quality: the 16MP camera and 720p recording ensure that the quality is good for most amateur photography and recording.
  • Specific Action Modes: specific action modes like Advanced Underwater Mode and Snorkeling mode means that details that are typically lost with underwater photography are captured with this camera.
  • Built-in Memory: if the external memory card fills up, the built-in memory will automatically take over and can hold up to 34 images.
What We Don’t Like:
  • Lower Recording Quality: the video quality is lower than most of the other cameras on this list.

The Best Underwater Camera for Snorkeling

For the most part, the Olympus Tough TG-6 is the top underwater camera for snorkeling. It offers up great image and recording quality, is waterproof, and hardy. Not to mention, the Underwater Shooting modes means that your pictures come out incredibly well.

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Underwater Digital Cameras vs. Action Cameras

As you will have noticed with our best underwater camera list, we have included two types of cameras. These are the underwater digital cameras and action cameras. So, what is the difference between the two and which one is right for you?

For the most part, underwater digital cameras are similar to their regular counterparts. The main differences are that underwater cameras are equipped with waterproof housing and tend to be hardier. Apart from this, they work the same.

This is certainly an advantage for some users. If you are already familiar with how a digital camera works, you will discover that it is a similar process for the underwater counterpart. As a result, you can start using the camera right away with fewer errors made in the beginning.

Action cameras, on the other hand, are cameras that are specifically built for travel, underwater adventures, and heavy-duty use. This means that they are more durable and compact. Many people find them a great deal easier to carry around and handle, particularly when underwater.

Most action cameras boast high-quality images and video and produce more stable media too. The only real downside is that the majority of these cameras capture or record in a wide-angle fashion. This can make standard images look rather odd. Although the images can be digitally altered, this takes effort.

What to Look for in Underwater Cameras for Snorkeling

Here are some features to pay attention to when selecting an underwater camera:

Waterproof Capabilities

Now, the waterproof-ness of your camera is important when snorkeling. However, there isn’t much need to buy models that are capable of being waterproof at incredible depths. Unlike scuba diving, you aren’t going to be diving too deep into the water while snorkeling.

For most of your snorkeling expedition, you will be very close to the surface. Even if you dive every now and then, you are unlikely to reach depths greater than 5 or so feet. So, as long as your underwater camera is capable of being waterproof for a bit more than this, it will be a good choice.

Underwater Image Quality

Selecting a waterproof camera is the easy part. It is trickier to select a camera that can capture good underwater images or recordings. Needless to say, it is quite different to take pictures underwater than it is on land. This usually has to do with how the color changes under the water.

Thus, if you want to take truly impressive photos, it is a good idea to buy a camera that has underwater modes or is designed to accommodate photo-taking under the water. To a certain extent, most of these modes are about color correcting the images so that all hues and details show up on the photos.

However, the effect of each mode will often depend on the make and model you select. As such, it is important to be aware of what these underwater modes do.

Quick Shutter Speed

If you want to take photos of marine life, you need to consider shutter speed. This refers to the length of time that the camera shutter is open – i.e., how long it takes to snap a photo. Now, a great deal of marine life, small fish, in particular, tend to dart by rather quickly.

Due to this, having a camera with a faster shutter speed makes sense. You can capture these images without having to worry that they will come out blurry. Shutter speeds of 1/1000th are great for capturing fast-moving marine life. If this is too quick for you, though, a lower speed will do.

Compact and Easy to Handle

Needless to say, handling a camera underwater is more difficult than operating one on land. Due to this, you should get a compact camera as these are easier to carry around. At the same time, pay attention to the various buttons and features – are they easy to use and adjust underwater?


Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about underwater cameras:

Can Waterproof Cameras Be Used Underwater?

Most waterproof cameras can be considered underwater cameras. As such, they can be used underwater. However, you should always check that they are truly waterproof and not merely water-resistant.

How Much Does a Professional Underwater Camera Cost?

There can be a great deal of discrepancy in the price. On average, a sophisticated underwater camera can cost anywhere from $150 to $400. Those used by professional photographers can go for as much as $1000.

Can You Use Underwater Cameras Out of Water?

Yes, you can use underwater cameras out of water. The main difference between traditional and underwater cameras is that the latter has a waterproof housing. Apart from this, they tend to function in the same way.

These are the top guidelines for finding the best underwater camera for snorkeling. Stick to the tips provided here and you will have no trouble finding the ultimate fit for you.

This page was last updated on 2022-08-29. Affiliate links and Product Images are from Amazon PAAPI

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