Tips on How to Choose the Best Underwater Camera


It’s true there’s plenty of other fish in the sea, but why would you want a fish if you have a mermaid?” – Unknown

underwater camera

Every ounce of me LOVES the water and now it’s inherited by my children who are little mermaids and mermans during the summer swimming months. Swimming is hours of fun and play but what about documenting it?

Remember when your kids took their first dip in the pool? Cameras where snapping like paparazzi on Hollywood Blvd.  You captured their first reactions, their first bubbles and that crazy wet hair look, don’t even get me started on that cuteness.

Now that my kids are older at 9 and 12, capturing that summer time pool fun is more challenging  above water. They are underwater now doing summer-saults, diving for rings, holding their breath and of course famous canon balls.  I hear them say, “LOOK MOM, what I can do,” I look but I can’t really see the magic that is going on underwater… until NOW!

I decided I probably wasn’t alone in the quest for underwater memories of my little human-fish swimmers so I made Google my friend and did a little research and testing myself on some underwater cameras.  Let me start off by saying nor I or North Phoenix Moms blog is affliliated with these products, we just love to share with you when we find cool stuff!

Underwater cameras have really changed since the old disposable Kodak film camera we used to buy. We’d point, we’d shoot and then send it in hoping we at least got something that was not blurry.  Now, there are covers for your smart phones that take images that look like pro’s, cameras smaller than two inches and of course high end “all terrain” cameras.  I  wanted to test three different types of underwater cameras to see what works best for me, still keeping a budget in mind and I wanted my kids to be able to use it now that they are older… can we say underwater SELFIE!

GoPro Hero

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I already had a GoPro I use for my own photography business so I decided to use what I had. The GoPro is remarkable; the color, easy use and you can even see what you are photographing through the app on your phone. The price tag isn’t bad for an older model with the underwater housing and all starting around $150 on amazon. The quality of the images was impressive with high definition and you can take video or still images.  I was reluctant to have my kids use it unless it was being supervised though.  The GoPro has a bizzilion  attachments which makes it easy to take more places with water like the lake, ocean, tubing and rafting.  I totally  recommend the GoPro for a family “all terrain” camera, land or sea!

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Water Shot for iPhone

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We all have smart phones so this housing for underwater is perfect.  I just upgraded my iPhone to the 6plus and was having a really hard time finding one to fit it. So the lovely Stacey who is the one of the co-founders for North Phoenix Moms Blog shared her Water Shot housing she got for her iPhone 5s. The housing case seems smart and simple, something to take on vacation and since we carry our phones everywhere with use these days, that makes totally sense to add the ability to use it underwater too. Here is Stacey’s review:

” The Watershot underwater housing was a little more money than I had attended on spending ($100+) but I could not be happier with the results and ease of use. The case works great and I was able to download a free app to take the photos which was AWESOME!  Only words of caution I have are if you have your phone in the case for long outside of the water, it will overheat and not allow you to take pictures until it cools down. All times I used it and had the camera in the water, this did not happen.”

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 Polaroid Cube

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When I saw this little guy on Amazon I knew he had to be mine. At just smaller than 2 inches square, choice of colors (red, black or blue) and magnetic, the Polaroid Cube got my blood pumping with excitement to try this baby underwater. The design was super cute, the kids were able to play with it underwater themselves. We did however find it difficult to know if we were taking a picture or not because you can’t hear the picture beep in the underwater housing. Plus, I’m pretty sure there was a delay once you pressed the button to when it actually took the picture (2 secs?) because quite a few images were blurry with movement after snapping.  The cube doesn’t have an app on your phone to view your images right away, so you have to take a gamble, shoot all  your underwater images first, then use the USB (included) to upload/view your images on a  computer.  The cube and Gopro are similar however, without the app to preview your images, like the Gopro, the cube is a fun kid friendly underwater and above water camera. The images were good quality and at a price tag of $100 not bad for something to play with that the kids can use for hours of entertainment.

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After all is said and done, I’m over the moon now that we have some underwater memories of my kids plus some fun new toys to play with especially here in Phoenix, when our pool months go well into other areas’ fall and winter months.  I hope this inspires you to get a little playful with some underwater memories with your children.  Remember they are only little for so long.


Happy Snapping!


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Malia is a wife, mom of three pretty amazing kids, an addict to anything sweet and the owner of Malia B Photography. She is a sucker for emotion, creativity and being unique. After being an elementary school teacher for 6 years, she decided to close the teaching books and open her passion and shutterbug skills to photographing newborns, children and expecting parents. She hasn’t looked back since and now gets to spend her days capturing the greatness in babies and children, along with helping educate parents and photographers on how to capture theirs in photographs. When she is not behind the camera, she is cooking with her kids, pruning her garden or designing custom photography props.



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