Phone photography - waterproof cover...

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Grian
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Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Grian » Fri Sep 08, 2017 4:32 pm

I missed a couple of opportunities last week to take pictures of otters and porpoises blithely ignoring the Marine Code. Though they approached within paddle-poke distance - and indeed followed as we dutifully retreated - I have no evidence as my ailing phone went flat when I began filming and then died forever.

I'm no Douglas Wilcox but I would like to try to take reasonable pictures. Is my new phone (iPhone SE) up to the job, and if so is there a waterproof cover that won't distort the image?

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Grian
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Grian » Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:21 pm

Oops, not porpoises, bottlenose dolphins... explains the following, swimming under the boat and general harassment. I stand corrected - and thankful for a tiny piece of footage before the phone went dead.

All the more reason to be better prepared next time we're mugged by marine mammals.

Jonathan.
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Jonathan. » Wed Sep 27, 2017 8:50 am

Don’t have any recommendation for you but I’d be surprised if a good case doesn’t exist.

At the Brittany festival an Italian paddler was using a chart on his iPad to navigate. I was sceptical but at the end of the week he still had his iPad on his deck. He was confident that everything was completely backed up.
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Northshore Atlantic
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Psamathe
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Psamathe » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:58 am

I use an Aquapac case. They include a string that goes round your neck. I have tested mine (without the phone inside) at home with kitchen paper inside and left underwater in a saucepan for an hour it stayed dry inside. That said I would not want to go rolling with the phone (expensive things phones).

The Aquapac has a clear window on the back but the phone can slip so the opaque section covers the lens (i.e. you have to make sure the phone slides towards the string end). Also the plastic is not of "optical quality".

I use an iPhone 5S in the correct Aquapac for the phone.

One thing I have noticed taking landscapes is that the phone seems to have quite a wide angle lens (personal opinion) and I'm not that impressed with the photos it takes (I seem to have to brighten them all processing on laptop, both brightening exposure and adding contrast/vibrance/etc.)

It all works but as with all things in life, it's not 100%, compromises are involved. But the case is not massively expensive and I started carrying my phone more for recoding a gpx track that for photography (track gives you distance, speed, where you went, a "record" of your trip, etc. - all depends on the individual).

I did look at other more expensive cases but they were expensive and many had no lanyard attachment and I would not want to start using a phone on the water that would probably sink if dropped without a lanyard of some type!

Ian

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Douglas Wilcox
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Douglas Wilcox » Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:39 pm

Hi Grian, I too have an iPhone SE. I take a lot of landscape photos with it and it is a surprisingly good camera. I keep it in an Aquapac which I regularly check. I put some tissue paper in seal it up then squeeze under water looking for bubbles.

I do take photos with it on the water (when it is calm) but I take it out the case.

As Psamathe says it has a wide angle lens so not much good for dolphin photos but very acceptable for land/seascapes. It does have a 5x digital zoom but it is easier and achieves exactly the same result to crop the photo on the computer afterwards.

The late Mick MacRobb of Flat Earth sails in Australia emailed and asked if I could get him an urgent close up photo of his new sail design on the water. I got his email on my iPhone while I was out paddling. I took this on the phone and emailed it straight back!

Image

Douglas

Treeman21
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Treeman21 » Wed Sep 27, 2017 8:14 pm

I've been using this one for a while, so far it works a treat.
https://www.armor-x.com/case/apple-ipho ... cover.html

Psamathe
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Psamathe » Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:34 am

One aspect to consider when selecting a case is how easy it is to fit/remove. When I was looking, there were some excellent waterproof/shockproof cases (e.g. Lifeproof cases) but they were not designed to be fitted for something then removed. More designed to be fitted and then phone lives in the case forever.

Having a small phone is important to me so when not kayaking or cycling I didn't want it in a case and many cases were thus not suitable (I'm not somebody who believes "my phone is a thing of beauty ...").

Also look as the seal systems if you are going for a case that you only use when e.g. kayaking (i.e. regularly fit and remove) as you often have to be careful about grit and particles on the seal to maintain waterproof integrity.

Ian

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Grian
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Grian » Fri Sep 29, 2017 1:41 pm

Thanks guys for the helpful advice.

Looks as though a waterproof case but still removing the phone for photos is the way ahead - will need to also put in a bit of microfibre cloth so that I handle it with dry hands. Not only did its predecessor go a bit funny if handled with damp hands but this one's clever fingerprint recognition won't work unless they are bone dry. The alternative is to type in the secret code, by which time having already fumbled for five minutes getting it out of it's case the otters will have legged it!

Helpful also to know more about the camera in the SE, this explains why I've been disappointed by some of my non-landscape photos so far.

Psamathe
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Psamathe » Fri Sep 29, 2017 2:28 pm

Grian wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 1:41 pm
Thanks guys for the helpful advice.

Looks as though a waterproof case but still removing the phone for photos is the way ahead - will need to also put in a bit of microfibre cloth so that I handle it with dry hands. Not only did its predecessor go a bit funny if handled with damp hands but this one's clever fingerprint recognition won't work unless they are bone dry. The alternative is to type in the secret code, by which time having already fumbled for five minutes getting it out of it's case the otters will have legged it!

Helpful also to know more about the camera in the SE, this explains why I've been disappointed by some of my non-landscape photos so far.
You should be able to start the camera and take pictures without going through the fingerprint or entering the unlock code.
  • iOS10: Swipe up from the bottom to display the "Control Centre" and there is a button in that for the camera (without unlocking device)
  • iOS11: Swipe up (as for iOS10) or on the switch-on display (i.e. after pressing Home or on/off button) swipe left and that will also get you to the camera
These days I get mine out of the case to take pics but even of flat water I still find it hard to get my hands decently dry!

Later iPhones are meant to be water proof/resistant but then would I be getting out £1000 work of phone without a lanyard in the middle of a river .... (and would any insurance company pay-up even if it was covered under my policy?). n.b. I'm on a 5S so not on one of the £1000 models (yet)

Ian

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Grian
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Grian » Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:55 am

Thanks, thats helpful. Just downloaded IOS11.

Waterproof phone is very nice but not at that price for me either!

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Douglas Wilcox
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by Douglas Wilcox » Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:05 pm

Ian>
Later iPhones are meant to be water proof/resistant but then would I be getting out £1000 work of phone without a lanyard in the middle of a river .... (and would any insurance company pay-up even if it was covered under my policy?). n.b. I'm on a 5S so not on one of the £1000 models (yet)
Actually I take my Canon 5D Mk4 with L series lens out its case on the water, without a lanyard :)

Douglas

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T4Mac
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Re: Phone photography - waterproof cover...

Post by T4Mac » Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:13 pm

I take two phones on the water, although I choose my conditions carefully and they are very unlikely to end up in the water. Here's my reasoning....

If it's raining/splashy, a tiny bit of water on you phone/camera will cause condensation when you put it back in it's cover. So I don't bother with the waterproof cover and simply have it in a chest pocket accessible under my pfd armpit (there is a small fleece handwarmer in the pocket which dries it off). There is no sim card in this phone it is only for video and photos. Down side is that if I did end up in the water...it is dead. Touch wood and all that.

I also have a Galaxy S6 which is my emergency phone and is always in it's OB waterprooof case. The fact that I am not taking videos or photos with it means I always have good battery.

Once on shore I take the sim card from the S6 and put it in the S5 if I want to upload anything to Facebook etc.

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