Tech

Tough cameras for outdoor use

Rugged and waterproof cameras brave shock and the elements to document your outdoor adventures. Here are three to consider

If you're planning a family trip that involves the outdoors, you may want to pack along a separate camera.

Your regular smartphone may not be enough to withstand water and dust, especially if you're heading to the beach or pool.

You won't have to worry about children dropping your phone either - today's tough cameras are reliably shockproof.

They're also suitable for more adventurous adults who are keen on nature trekking, rock climbing, mountain biking and even scuba diving.

Here is a look at some tough cams:


OLYMPUS STYLUS TOUGH TG-4 ($498)

The flagship in Olympus' Tough series, the TG-4 is shockproof from drops of up to 2.1m, crushproof up to 100kgf, and operates at a temperature as low as -10 deg C.

This 16-megapixel camera is waterproof up to 15m. Fit the PT-056 housing and scuba divers can take the TG-4 down to 45m.

The 4x zoom lens and OLED monitor are coated to withstand scratches. At the same time it keeps away the obscuring effects of rain and condensation.

The battery door is double-locked to prevent accidental opening.

Noteworthy is TG-4's 1cm super macro mode, perfect for capturing vein details on a forest leaf or magnifying tiny critters.

The TG-4 is Wi-Fi and GPS-equipped. The GPS function tracks routes and tags location information to your photos.

The camera also has gauges to measure air or water pressure, altitude or water depth, and shows electronic compass directions - useful for climbs and treks.

The flagship in Olympus' Tough series, the TG-4 is shockproof from drops of up to 2.1m, crushproof up to 100kgf, and operates at a temperature as low as -10 deg C.

This 16-megapixel camera is waterproof up to 15m. Fit the PT-056 housing and scuba divers can take the TG-4 down to 45m.

The 4x zoom lens and OLED monitor are coated to withstand scratches. At the same time it keeps away the obscuring effects of rain and condensation.

The battery door is double-locked to prevent accidental opening.

Noteworthy is TG-4's 1cm super macro mode, perfect for capturing vein details on a forest leaf or magnifying tiny critters.

The TG-4 is Wi-Fi and GPS-equipped. The GPS function tracks routes and tags location information to your photos.

The camera also has gauges to measure air or water pressure, altitude or water depth, and shows electronic compass directions - useful for climbs and treks.


FUJIFILM FINEPIX XP90 ($499)

This camera is great for those who may be handling their cameras one-handed or with gloves.

The size and position of the controls are designed for easy use.

It works up to 15m underwater, survives drops of up to 1.75m and can brave chills as low as -10 deg C. It also has a double-locking mechanism to prevent accidental opening of the battery and memory card compartment.

The XP90's versatile 5x optical zoom lens is coupled with a 16.4 megapixel sensor. Optical image stabilisation helps to ensure blur-free images at low shutter speeds.

With built-in Wi-Fi, the XP90 allows remote shooting and quick wireless sharing of photos and videos to tablets and smartphones.


NIKON KEYMISSION 360 (PRICE TBA)

The much anticipated Nikon KeyMission wearable action cameras became available in the United States this week and should reach our shores soon.

All three launch models are rugged and waterproof.

The killer feature of the flagship model, the KeyMission 360, is its ability to capture immersive 360-degree videos in 4K UHD format.

The 360-degree videos can be viewed on Nikon's head-mounted display accessory, which works with compatible smartphones to play back 360-degree videos via Nikon's dedicated app.

It sports twin f/2.0 lens and two 21.14-megapixel CMOS sensors to capture 360-degree stills of up to 30 megapixels. This is done in-camera, without the need to meddle with software.

The flagship KeyMission 360 can record images and video underwater up to a depth of 30m for 60 mins. It is impressively shockproof at up to 2m and freezeproof at up to -10 deg C.

Comprehensive accessories for the KeyMission 360 include mounts for handlebars and surfboards, as well as chest and wrist mounts.

This gives the KeyMission 360 flexibility to record adrenaline-packed action ranging from mountain biking, surfing to sky-diving.

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