6 Best underwater professional camera: (2023 Guide & Reviews)

If you’re a professional photographer, you know that having the best camera is essential to getting the perfect shot.

And when it comes to underwater photography, there’s no doubt you need a high-quality camera that can withstand the elements.

But with so many cameras on the market, how do you know which is right for you?

Thankfully, we’ve researched for you and compiled a list of the best underwater professional cameras available.

Whether you’re shooting photos of fish in an aquarium or capturing images of coral reefs, these cameras will help you get the perfect picture every time.

So dive into our list and find the perfect camera for your next underwater adventure!

Which is the Best underwater professional camera?

Here are my recommended top 6 Best underwater professional camera:-

Canon EOS Rebel SL3: (Best Value)

I am a photography enthusiast, and I have been fascinated by the beauty of the underwater world and dreamed of one day capturing its splendor with my camera lens.

Finally, the day came to turn my dream into a reality.

I packed my bags and set off on an adventure to a remote tropical island, where I planned to explore the coral reefs and take photographs of the vibrant marine life.

As soon as I arrived at the island, I rushed to the shore to set up my gear.

I carefully attached my camera to a waterproof housing, testing the seals before diving in.

As I descended into the clear blue water, I was struck by the breathtaking beauty of the coral reef.

Schools of colorful fish darted around me, and I could see huge sea turtles and graceful rays gliding through the water.

I quickly got to work, capturing images with my Best Value – Canon EOS Rebel SL3 of the stunning scenery and the amazing creatures called the reef home.

And I spent hours submerged, lost in the moment as I captured shot after shot of the mesmerizing underwater world.

Features:

  • Model: Canon EOS Rebel SL3
  • Sensor: High Image Quality with 24.1 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) Sensor.
  • Autofocus: Fast and Accurate Dual Pixel CMOS AF with Eye Detection AF.
  • Video capture support: 4K Video, 4K Time-lapse Movie.
  • Screen: Vari-angle Touch Screen, 3.0-inch LCD.
  • Connectivity: Built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Technology with Auto Image Transfer.
  • Viewfinder Type: Eye-level SLR (with fixed pentaprism)
  • Shutter type: Vertical travel, mechanical, focal-plane
  • Shutter speed: 1/4000-1 sec

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

To take some wide-angle shots with my camera, I set ISO at 250, making the camera more sensitive to ambient light and not high to get clear and sharp images.

I chose a shutter speed of 1/125s  because I want to let more light into the camera while freezing the motion of fish and sea creatures or camera shake.

Aperture/ field of depth:

I started to shoot at an aperture of f/8 that created enough depth of field for my wide-angle shots, and it is also perfect for letting ambient light into the camera.

I shot coral reefs with this setting on my camera and got some incredible shots.

White balance/ frame rate:

I set the white balance at auto mode as in this mode, and my camera decides how much is enough for various conditions and a frame rate of 24fps.

By that, I got enough stills and 4k videos of this enchanting scene.

Why is this the best camera?

This is best for professional underwater photography, with its remarkable features like full HD video, a flip screen for taking the best angles, and an impressive 24.1 megapixel CMOS image sensor.

This camera excels in low-light performance with an ISO speed of up to 25600.

It includes dust reduction, making it perfect for diving adventures or capturing other forms of exploration outdoors.

Conclusion:

The image processor lets you do more with your photos using creative filters and special effects too!

It’s no wonder the  SL3 is one of the best options available today to find the best underwater professional camera you can use both above and under it.

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Pros
  • Compact.
  • Vari-angle touch LCD.
  • 1080p video with good autofocus.
  • External mic support.
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
Cons
  • Autofocus struggles with action

Nikon D850: (Best Overall High-End Camera)

Every dive after that brought new surprises: seahorse colonies hiding among seagrasses, manta rays gliding gracefully through crystal clear waters, and majestic whale sharks feeding near the shoreline.

And so much more!

In any case, no matter what kind of subject matter or lighting conditions were present during those dives – one thing was for sure: every image came out better than before!

With my Niko D850 camera, I took stunning shots of sea life.

I was mesmerized by the beauty of sea life.

Features:

  • Model: Nikon D850
  • Effective megapixels: 45.7 MP
  • ISO Range: 64-25,600 expandable to 102,400
  • Sensor: 45.7 MP back-side illuminated CMOS sensor
  • Image processing: expeed 5 image processing
  • Shooting mode: 7 fps continuous shooting
  • Autofocus: 153 points AF system 99 cross-type sensor, down to -4 EV
  • Screen: tilting touch screen
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism Single-Lens Reflex Viewfinder
  • Shutter Speed: 1/8000 to 30 sec.
  • Shutter type: Electronic

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

To capture the scene’s beauty while majestic whales were feeding, I preferred to keep  Camera ISO at 400 as I was deep in the ocean and the water was cloudy.

Bumping my ISO a little bit lets my camera pass in enough light so that I can shoot at a faster shutter speed of 1/700.

Aperture/ field of depth:

While keeping my camera in autofocus mode, I don’t get out of focus, especially when the subject moves faster.

So I kept my aperture f/11 as I was farther away from the subject and wanted my subject to be fully open.

An aperture of f11 created an ideal depth of field for this particular macro photography scene.

White balance/ frame rate:

As I was shooting an ambient light shot, I selected a custom light balance of 7000k to get a cloudy effect in the images I got.

I was 15 feet under the water and got the best-ever shots of the shark that were clear enough and gave cold, chill vibes.

Why is this the best camera?

Regarding best-in-class performance and professional-quality photos, the Nikon D850 is truly in a league of its own.

With a top-of-the-line 45.7 megapixel resolution, this camera offers unparalleled clarity, making it perfect for any photography enthusiast or professional looking to capture the best shots of their travels.

Conclusion:

Moreover, this Nikon powerhouse is also an incredibly capable underwater camera, besting its competitors in speed and image resolution.

For anyone looking to take stunning photography – above and below the waves – this Nikon is one of the best underwater professional cameras on the market.

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Pros
  • Full-frame 45.7MP image sensor.
  • 153-point autofocus system.
  • 7fps burst shooting.
  • Wide ISO range.
  • 4K video.
  • Large optical viewfinder.
  • Tilting touch LCD.
  • Dual card slots.
  • Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
Cons
  • No built-in flash.
  • SnapBridge system needs some work.

Canon 5D Mark IV: (Best Canon Camera)

I recently got the opportunity to travel to the Channel Islands, California, for an underwater photography adventure of a lifetime.

As I arrived on the islands and began my journey into the ocean’s depths, I was immediately captivated by the stunning beauty beneath.

The underwater world’s colors, textures, and life were breathtaking.

I explored the first dive site in a shallow cove full of vibrant coral and aquatic life.

Here I observed countless varieties of fish and invertebrates, including clownfish, sea stars, anemones, and even turtles.

As I floated around, fascinated by my surroundings and capturing photos on the camera, it wasn’t long before I found myself surrounded by a school of playful dolphins!

I also take stunning shots of them.

Features:

  • Model: Canon 5D Mark IV
  • Sensor: 36 x 24 mm CMOS
  • Effective Pixels: 30.4 MP
  • ISO Range: Auto 100-32000 (in 1/3-stop or whole-stop increments)
  • Shutter type: Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter
  • Shutter speed: 30-1/8000 sec
  • Lens: EF (excludes EF-S / EF-M lenses)
  • Autofocus: TTL-secondary image-forming phase-difference detection system with a dedicated AF sensor
  • viewfinder: Pentaprism
  • screen: 8.10cm (3.2″) Clear View LCD II, approx. 1620K dots
  • Flash: E-TTL II Auto Flash, Metered Manual

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

To capture the dolphins at a wide angle, I put the camera under manual mode, so I Set ISO of 200 at 30 feet underwater and used my strobes for lighting sources as it was a little dark out there.

Using a high ISO of 400 or 500 with my TTL  strobes will ruin my photos by adding color to the seascape.

Ideally, the best shutter speed for this is 1/150, giving me the best stills.

Aperture/ field of depth:

As this was a wide angle, I had to select the aperture thoughtfully.

After carefully considering my camera’s  ISO and shutter speed settings and the nature of the shot, I chose an aperture of f/16 as I was far away from my subject.

By this, I achieved a wider depth of field to catch the beauty of the entire scene.

White balance/ frame rate:

I also aimed for some stunning 4k  video shots and wanted a cool effect, which is always perfect for marine photography.

I kept the white balance at 5000k and a frame rate of 30fps, so the videos I got were of high resolution and smooth.

Why is this the best camera?

Articulate photography professionals consider the Canon 5D Mark IV camera best for capturing aquatic images.

It provides detailed, high-resolution imagery and best-in-class AF, ensuring that even moments that pass in a blur above water can be frozen in time below the surface.

Conclusion:

. The body is well-sealed against dust and moisture, making it an ideal choice for underwater professional photo opportunities.

This camera makes capturing crystal clear pictures with eye-popping colors effortless – whether you’re shooting in shallow or deep waters.

You’ll be sure to get the best shots possible using this state-of-the-art camera system! to sum up; this is the best underwater professional camera.

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Pros
  • 30MP full-frame image sensor.
  • Fast 61-point autofocus system.
  • 7fps continuous shooting.
  • Unlimited JPG shooting buffer.
  • Pro-grade build.
  • Dual Pixel AF Live View focus system.
  • 3.2-inch touch screen.
  • Integrated GPS and Wi-Fi.
  • CF and SD card slots.
Cons
  • 4K video files are quite large.
  • No in-body flash.

Nikon D780: (Best DSLR-Mirrorless “Hybrid Camera”)

Next, we ascended deeper waters near one of the islands, where some incredible reefs provided me with even more magnificent subjects to photograph.

Here we encountered multiple species of sharks and an array of colorful fish like angelfish and parrot fish.

It was truly awe-inspiring to witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitat up close.

I then ventured further offshore towards various wrecks scattered across the ocean floor, providing a unique mix between human-made structures and natural wonders like sea sponges or giant schools of schooling fish.

Features:

  • Model: Nikon D780
  • Effective pixels: 24.5 million
  • image sensor Format: Fx CMOS 35.9mm x 23.9mm
  • ISO Range: 100-51,200
  • video capture mode: 4k UHD 30fps
  • screen: TFT touch-screen sensitive LCD
  • Camera Type: Single-lens reflex digital camera
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism Single-Lens Reflex Viewfinder
  • Shutter Type: Electronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane
  • Shutter Speed: 1/8000 to 30 sec.
  • Autofocus Detection Range: Viewfinder photography: -3 to +19 EV

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

I want to capture schooling fish with streaming light rays effect in cenotes.

For this purpose, I Set ISO at a higher side of about 1600 and a faster shutter speed of 1/100 to capture this heart-melting scene.

Aperture/ field of depth:

To get the perfect eye-catching shot of the moment, I set the smaller side of the camera aperture of f/18 to get a wider depth of field.

That would help me capture sharp light ribbons, adding magic to my photos.

White balance/ frame rate:

For perfect results, I set AWB white balance and frame rate at 20 fps with wide-angle focal lengths and got astonishing results for the entire scene.

Why is this the best camera?

If you’re looking for the best underwater professional camera available, look no further than the Nikon D780.

This fantastic camera has many features to make your underwater photography experience seamless.

It boasts an excellent 24.5-megapixel resolution with 12 frames per second of continuous shooting.

It comes equipped with a full-frame back-illuminated FX CMOS sensor, allowing for unparalleled image quality even in low-light underwater scenarios.

Conclusion:

Furthermore, it offers a hybrid autofocus system with both phase and contrast-detect AF systems, giving you precise result time after time.

On top of all that, it includes great support options like creative lenses, UV filters, and steady grips to help customize your shooting experience the way you want.

Whether it’s topside or underwater photos, you’re in search of capturing; the Nikon D780 is the best choice!

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Pros
  • Excellent 24MP full-frame sensor.
  • 7fps bursts with tracking.
  • 12fps electronic shutter.
  • Tilting touch LCD.
  • Phase detect focus for video.
  • 4K with a flat profile.
  • In-camera charging.
Cons
  • Viewfinder autofocus has a limited scope of coverage.
  • The image sensor isn’t stabilized.

Canon 1DX Mark III: (Best DSLR For Video)

Each dive site offered something special to capture through my lens, including dramatic rock formations or mysterious caverns teeming with life!

My final dive took place at night when most creatures are more active, making it easier for us to spot marine animals such as octopus, squid, seahorse, and eels that usually avoid our sight during daylight hours.

This dive also provided me with incredible photo opportunities due to all the bioluminescent plankton that seemed to light up every corner we passed!

It’s incredible how much diversity can be found within just one small piece of ocean.

Features:

  • Model: Canon 1DX Mark III
  • ISO range: Up to 20 fps Shooting, ISO 100-1024004
  • Sensor: 20.1MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
  • Autofocus: EOS iTR AF X 191-Point AF System
  • Autofocus range: Dual Pixel CMOS AF, 525 Selectable Areas
  • image processor: DIGIC X Image Processor
  • Internal Memory: K60 10-Bit 4:2:2 Internal Recording
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS
  • Video Support: Canon Log and 5.5K Raw Video Support
  • Shutter type: Electronic shutter, Mechanical Focal Plane Shutter
  • Shutter speed: 1/8000 to 30 sec
  • Built-in flash: No

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

To be a more creative photographer, I now aim for some close shots of small marine creatures.

As this was nighttime, I had my artificial light source with me.

I used  TTL strobes for this purpose and spot metering.

Now I set ISO at 200 to let in enough light while keeping the shutter speed at 1/160

Aperture/ field of depth:

Next, I selected an aperture of f/16, the smallest possible aperture, to achieve a wider depth of field.

As a seahorse is very difficult to capture, I took full advantage of this chance to catch it in the camera.

White balance/ frame rate:

As I was using an artificial light source to capture this moment, I kept the white balance at 6000k for a natural effect, and for blur-free videos, I set a frame rate of 60fps.

As for most underwater video shoots, it is advisable to use a 60fps frame rate and wide field view.

So in your videos, no motion is blurred.

Why is this the best camera?

The Canon 1DX Mark III camera is best for professional underwater photography.

It has advanced features that give me the edge when capturing beautiful shots of the sea, from coral reefs and vibrant tropical fish to professional surfing and free-diving images, proving it the best professional underwater camera.

Professional underwater burst speeds and wide ISO range improve image resolution and clearer detail in extreme low light conditions.

Plus, autofocus speed and power make it highly accurate when shooting both stills and videos.

Whether you’re a professional photographer or want your best vacation shots, this is an ideal choice with its excellent quality images combined with precision focus.

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Pros
  • Exceptional build quality
  • 20MP full-frame sensor with 5.5K Raw video
  • 16fps capture with mechanical shutter
  • 20fps with electronic shutter
  • Superlative autofocus (for an SLR)
  • Huge battery
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet connectivity
Cons
  • EF lenses no longer in development
  • Requires expensive CFexpress memory cards

Nikon D500: (Best Cropped-Sensor Camera)

My British Columbia, Canada, underwater photography adventure was truly one of a kind.

As soon as I arrived in the beautiful city of Vancouver, I could not wait to explore its vast and vibrant marine life.

After purchasing all the necessary equipment for my amazing dive, I went out to sea with a group of experienced divers.

As we descended deeper into the ocean waters, we were immediately surrounded by colorful fish and other sea creatures.

I took every opportunity to capture shots from every angle possible.

I was observing the remarkable diversity and beauty of these creatures up close made my experience unlike anything else I ever had before.

Features:

  • Model: Nikon D500
  • Sensor: 20.9MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor
  • ISO Range: Native ISO 51200, Extend to ISO 1640000
  • Image Processor: EXPEED 5 Image Processor
  • Screen:3.2″ 2,539k-Dot Tilting Touchscreen LCD
  • Lens: DX NIKKOR 16-80mm f/2.8-4E ED VR Lens
  • Frame rate: 10 fps Shooting for Up to 200 Frames
  • video capture mode: 4K UHD Video Recording at 30 fps
  • Autofocus: Multi-CAM 20K 153-Point AF System
  • Connectivity: Built-In Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC-Camera
  • Built-in flash: No
  • Still image resolution: 21MP
  • Shutter type: Mechanical Focal Plane Shutter, Electronic Shutter
  • Shutter speed: 1/8000 to 30 Seconds

ISO/ Shutter Speed:

As the fish was moving slowly, looking like enjoying the water, so to freeze the motion, I preferred to keep the shutter speed at 1/800 and ISO at 200.

This ISO range will not impact the quality of the image as I will get clear, detailed images of the subject.

Aperture/ field of depth:

As this was a wide-angle shot and I was at a decent distance to catch the scene to its full glory, I kept my aperture at the smaller side of f22 by getting a wider depth of field, and the results blew my mind.

White balance/ frame rate:

As the weather was cloudy out there and this was mid of the day, so I selected Auto white balance.

As for these conditions, the camera works best in auto mode, and a frame rate of 60fps gives me high-resolution 4k videos and slow motions.

Why is this the best camera?

The Nikon D500 is the best camera to invest in for professional photographs.

It offers outstanding low-light performance and accuracy with a 20.9-megapixel image sensor, 153 focus points, an EXPEED 5 image processor, and best-in-class autofocus speed.

Its exceptional 4k video capability makes it the best choice for cinematography or live performances.

Conclusion:

Moreover, its weather sealing makes it perfect for outdoor photography with a dustproof and splashes resistant body.

It’s even the best underwater professional camera due to anti-fogging measures taken by the developer!

The camera will be sure to make you never miss a shot!

Hence it is perfect.

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Pros
  • Solid build.
  • Advanced, edge-to-edge autofocus system.
  • 10fps capture with tracking focus.
  • Large buffer for extended shooting.
  • Superb high ISO image quality.
  • Clean HDMI output.
  • Excellent control layout.
  • Tilting touch-screen LCD.
  • Dust- and weather-resistant design.
  • XQD and SD card slots.
Cons
  • Snapbridge wireless transfer needs some work.
  • No built-in flash.

CONCLUSION:

Alright, guys, that concludes all the cameras we will discuss today in this article.

Do you guys have any experience with these cameras? What are your thoughts on them?

Which is your Best underwater professional camera?

Is there a camera you love to use for underwater photography that I didn’t mention in this article?

Would you please leave your thoughts and comments below?

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