Best Rated Mid-Range Weather-Sealed DSLR Cameras

photographer-424622_640While ther is no universal definition to what is truly considered weather-sealed in the camera industry, many photography enthusiasts are looking for digital SLR cameras that are designed with weather-sealing because of how they can combat different weather conditions. These cameras have joints and buttons that are covered and sealed with rubber to reduce their exposure to dust and moisture. Note, though, that not all weather-sealed cameras are created equal. More often than not, the most expensive ones provide higher level of treatment compared to those that are more affordable.

How would a weather-sealed DSLR camera help you in the field? Simply put, your camera is now more resistant to splashes of water and normal amounts of dust, so you won’t have to worry about those little things and focus instead on your subject. This weather-sealing feature can really come in handy if you are an outdoor photographer. With this said, here are four of the best weather-sealed DLSR cameras on the market.

Best Rated DSLR Camera For the Money

The Nikon D7200 keeps up the good work of its predecessor, the D7100, and adds a number of improvements. For starter, the photo quality it delivers is much better for both JPEG and RAW. JPEGs have nice colors and great exposures. They have good tonal range in the shadows as well. The D7200 also performs pretty well in low light.

There are a lot of tangible features that are present in this DSLR compared to its predecessor. It now has Wi-Fi conenctivity. Battery life has increased from 950 to 1,100 shots. There’s a faster processor and larger buffer for longer bursts of photos. Although taking videos with it in low light is not really impressive, it does provide better capture in normal lighting conditions, thanks to its ability to capture up to 60fps at 1080p. The autofocus sensor retains its 51-point array but this time they work better in low light, quoted as being sensitive down to -3 EV compared to the EV of the D7100. Moreover, it has a new sensor with an ISO range that’s increased by two stops, although the highest 512,000 and 1,024,000 settings are offered in black and white mode only. Additionally, bracketing is now grouped up to nine frames. This comes really handy when you’re capturing a very wide range shots.

In conclusion, this is the weather-sealed camera you want if you’re coming from D7100 but want better autofocus and image quality and Wi-Fi capabilities.

Best Rated Inexpensive DSLR Camera

One of our most recommended models that are not too expensive is the Canon EOS 70D. It features a 20.2-megapixel CMOS sensor coupled with a Digic 5 processor. Moreover, it can shoot at up to 7fps at full resolution for up to 65 JPEGs or 16 raw files.

The 70D sports a touch-sensitive screen that can be used to make settings adjustments and scroll through images. Additionally, the screen is on an articulating joint, and this makes it easy to view from a range of angles, whether shooting in landscape or portrait format. Wi-Fi connectivity is fast becoming one of the must-have features for cameras, and the Canon 70D does not disappoint in this respect. The possibility of controlling the camera remotely using Canon’s free EOS remote app for Android and iOS smartphones and tablets is a real bonus. All things considered, this is a very desirable camera that is capable of producing superb results.

Best Rated Mid-Range DSLR Camera on the Market

Featuring a Sony-designed 24MP sensor, the Pentax K-3 is yet another contender in this list; it is the perfect choice if you’re budget-conscious. Along with that sensor is a newly developed imaging engine – PRIME III, enabling the device to shoot at 8.3 frames per second. Its SAFOX 11 AF module is also a great addition, which offers 27 autofocus points, of which 25 are cross type for increased accuracy.

Wi-Fi is fast becoming an almost required specification of cameras, and this is standard on the Pentax. The K-3 is equipped with the so-called flu card that allows for transfer of images across to smartphones and tablets, along with remote control of the camera. Finally, Pentax K-3 is weather-sealed, as are many of Pentax’s current Pentax lenses and accessories (such as battery grips), making it a complete weather proof system.

Best Rugged Cameras Under $200

lead_960Are you the kind of person who travels a lot and want to take pictures wherever yo go, whether you’re going hiking or snorkeling? Don’t let the weather stop you from capturing moments even when you’re underwater; get a rugged camera to take care of your photo-shooting. And for people who ar tightened by budget, it is a dream come true to finally get a waterproof camera that is priced not more than $200.

If you haven’t decided yet which model and brand to get, check out our recommendations below and see which one meets your needs best.

Top-Rated Rugged Camera 2015

Do you know when to trust what a company says about its camera? It is when there’s a clamor among customers who have already tried it. This is true with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS25 Tough Digital Camera. It is waterproof up to 23 feet, shockproof from 5 feet height, and freezeproof from up to 14 degrees F, making it an ideal companion for the active photographer.

The Lumix DMC-TS25 features a 16.1 mega pixel CCD sensor, a 4x optical zoom with ultra-wide-angle 25 mm and with Intelligent Zoom up to eight times. One of its impressive ability is its Underwater mode that allows the camera to capture the true colors of the seabed. It also has the Flashlight function, which uses the brightness of the display so you would be able to see more clearly in low-light conditions. This is particularly helpful when the weather is a little gloomy. This is indeed a perfect camera for extreme sports enthusiasts or for those who want to film and take pictures in any weather.

Best Waterproof Camera with Full HD Video

The Nikon COOLPIX S33 Waterproof Digital Camera is one of the best options for worry-free photography. Unlike other rugged cameras that have really tough-looking exteriors, Nikon has kept things simple with this model without sacrificing its ability to survive any weather. Behind its simplicity is its ruggedness. It can survive a drop of as high as 5 feet, a temperature as low as 14°F, and dives underwater as deep as 33 feet.

The Coolpix S33 has 15 different scene modes, including fireworks, underwater, macromirror, neon effect, and interval shooting. It also features an underwater face framing mode, hich will automatically focus in on faces while underwater. This is helpful when you’re standing by the pool and want to take a picture of a person underwater as you don’t need to dip your head just to do it. Moreover, this camera can capture capture video, though it’s limited to 1080/30p. At its current price, this is a great value for money.

Best Lightweight Rugged Camera

The Fujifilm FinePix XP80 Waterproof Digital Camera boasts waterproofing down to 15 metres, shock proofing from 1.75m, freeze proofing down to -10 degrees Celsius as well as dust and sandproofing. Just like the other rugged cameras from Fujifilm, the FinePix XP80 has rounded, curved edges and it’s available in a variety of different colors, which includes yellow, graphite black, and blue. Behind the external appearance is a great software. It features a Scene Recognition Auto for those moments when you can’t decide which scene is the best. This mode allows the camera to automatically  pick a scene mode and apply the best settings. If you want to have more control, you can choose the Program mode that will allow you to have flexibility on some settings, such as the ISO sensitivity. Other exposure modes include the advanced digital filters if you want to experiment with the way your images look, and different specific scene modes, such as underwater, landscape and panorama.

When it comes to image quality, the XP80 may not be at par with regular compact cameras, but that’s the tade-off for its ruggedness. However, this is not to say that image quality is behind standard; in fact, it produces quite impressive pictures. In good light, the camera s capable of producing some bright and punchy images. When you print them or upload them on the web, the images have good overall amount of details.

Best Rugged Camera with Image Stabilization

Image stabilization is one of the many important factors that photographers consider important in taking great shots. This technology allows you to capture sharp pictures at shutter speeds three, four, or five times slower than previously possible. And a decent image stabilization is hard to find in rugged cameras. One of the few that offers a satisfying IS is the Ricoh WG-30 Waterproof Digital Camera. It can handle a depth of 39 feet for two hours. It is also shockproof, ruggedized design protects from drops up to 5 feet, crushproof at a weight of 220 LBF (pound-force), and coldproof for up to 14 degrees F.

The Ricoh WG-30 boasts a  backside-illuminated CMOS 16.0-megapixel image sensor, which makes the camera more responsive and more able to capture images with greater details. ISO sensitivity is still limited to a maximum of ISO 6400 equivalent, which is still good enough considering its price and the fact that it is a waterproof camera. Finally, it can capture full HD videos, a great addition for those who want to shoot videos underwater.

Best Cameras for Hiking

81CKbPFPcOL._SL1500_When hiking, you’d want to bring a camera with you to keep memories. And because of the rigors of climbing mountains and walking through treks, it is required that you get a lightweight and durable camera. There are, of course, a lot of options depending on your budget — from quality compact cameras to DSLRs, there’s sure to be one fit for hiking. Moreover, although it’s not difficult to keep your camera protected from the elements with a simple dry bag, a weather-sealed model would be a better choice for a number of good reasons.

While there are a lot to choose from, only few can be considered worth the money. Here are our own picks.

Top-Rated Compact Camera for Hiking

If you’re a casual hiker or one who only needs a camera for memory-keeping, a compact camera is a great option. It keeps your pack light and takes small space in your backpack. Sure, it’s hard to match the quality of images produced by DSLRs, but it doesn’t mean a compact camera can only give you crappy photos. One of those with great technological advancement is the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX7. It features a Leica lens with a maximum aperture of f/1.4, meaning that it offers exceptional low light performance, a perfect feature for capturing that beautiful sunrise and sunset. Moreover, its grip may not be large but its leather-effect rubber padding further prevents the camera from feeling like it will slip from your grasp in a strong wind, which is helpful when you’re on a hike.

Best Mirrorless Camera for Hiking

Now, if DSLR-quality of images is what you need but you’re not quite sure if a DSLR camera is going to be worth it, then get the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Digital Camera. Paired with this quality is the ruggedness required to endure the elements in whenever you choose to hike. It weighs between 7.5 ounces and 27 ounces dependening on your lens selections, a little heavier than compact camera but still light enough to not give you pressure carryint it on your climb. Moreover, it provides RAW and JPEG quality photos at 16 megapixels. The higher resolution also provides better focus and faster sensor technology. Another impressive ability of this mirrorless camera is that it can capture the movement and the density of nature better than its compact counterparts.

Best Tough Camera on the Market

“Tough is only the beginning.” That is the glaring ad for the Olympus TG-860 Tough Waterproof Digital Camera, and it’s right. Because behind the word are a lot more features that are worth every penny you’re going to spend for this ‘tough’ monster. It is waerproof, so whether it’s sunny or it’s raining, you can definitely take it out to take photos. It is also shockproof up to 7ft / 2.1m, crushproof up to 220lbf / 100kgf, freezeproof to 14°F / -10°C, and dustproof. No wonder it’s called “tough.” It also features n ultra-wide angle, super-sharp 21mm lens, a full 180-degree flip LCD monitor, built-in WiFi and GPS, and a new Sportcam mode that optimizes settings for action shots. At less than $300-dollar budget, this is the best choice for the hiker-photographer.

Top-Rated DSLR Camera for Hikers

Who said you can’t carry a DSLR when you hike? Of course, you can — with the Canon EOS Rebel SL1 Digital SLR. Weighing at only around 15 ounces for the camera body, this is ideal for hiking. Despite its size, the SL1 uses the same image sensor as the Rebel T5i, which has been receiving positive reviews even from professional photographers. It is also impressively speedy, starting and shooting in just 0.6-second. It can manage 0.1-second shutter lag in good light, and can fire off JPG shots continuously at 4 frames per second.

It is not Wi-Fi capable, but you can add an Eye-Fi Mobi memory card, or anything like it, to transfer photos to other devices, such as your phone, for easy social media sharing. Sure, it has not a lot of bells and whistles, but if image quality is your top priority, this sure fits the bill.