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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2009
I purchased this camera 4 days ago and immediately took it to my swiming pool. After holding it in my hand I thought that there was no way this could possibly work or be waterproof. I was very wrong. I first trained myself on its operation and then tossed it in the pool. I got suited up in SCUBA and took it to the bottom at 6' and held it at depth for 20 minutes. The film quality was excellent and no leaks. It was easy to operate underwater. The next day I took it to the Florida Keys. I took it immediately well past its rated depth of 10' to 28' and kept it there for several hours on at least six dives. I inserted a 8GB SD disk and took hours of video and over 100 stills. The quality was excellent both in video and stills.

The flash is not designed for underwater use - so don't waste your power. The camera has a limit on lighting so at some point it blacks out in the evening. (If you want more camera and light you can get it but it WILL cost MUCH more than this camera did!)

The power/data port is very poorly designed and you should be very careful how you plug it in. The power/data opening is quite small but you should always take MUCH care and put a small amount of silicone on it each dive with a cue-tip. NEVER open this hatch with wet hands. One drop of saltwate inside will likely kill it.

You can either use the software provided for offloading images - but if you have installed an SD card you can just pop the card out and upload directly.

It produces fine quality video and stills. I would not take it under 30' which is already 3X its rated depth. But at 28' it worked like a champion. I honestly cannot understand all the whining about this camera and its ratings here - the camera worked FLAWLESSLY for me way beyoind its design limits. If I lost this camera, I'd definitely buy another one tomorrow.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on August 13, 2009
I took this camera recently to Tortola BVI and used it while snorkeling and in the pool. It works great. For $100 you cannot go wrong. The video quality was above average. The picture quality was better than expected as well. The only negative comment I would make is that if you are shooting underwater and then come out of the water, the sound quality can be tinny at first. When the microphone dries out, it goes back to normal however.

There are only 5 buttons on this camera so it is very easy to use as well. Additionally, often when you buy a new camera you get a box full of cables for each function. This camera, however, has one cable that you utilize for charging, connecting to a computer and for connecting to your television. Love it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on April 8, 2010
I had this camcorder for a float trip in Missouri. It works well in the water (barring bad audio initially once breaking the surface) For the price you end up getting a very good video and audio quality. The stills it takes are only passable in daylight, terrible indoors. As long as you are sure to seat the battery/SD card door properly it will maintain the seal, if you are in a rush (like I am sure many buyers are) you can end up with an unseated seal and get water inside. One problem though, this camera will lose its water tight casing if dropped (found out the hard way when one of my children knocked it onto the concrete driveway.) I will definitely be purchasing another one to replace that broken model for this summer.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2010
I received the DVR 850W-Y for Christmas in anticipation of our trip to the Caymans in March. On the surface, the camera was like any other, light weight, good viewing screen, easy controls. The battery compartment is on the back spine of the camera body and is accessed by a tiny black tab that is somewhat difficult to use. Still, I was excited. My wife and I planned several snorkel outings, an afternoon in the bay with Sting Rays, a bio-luminescent bay tour, all to be captured on this camera. The first time I entered the water, I was filming a school of Jack fish and the screen went black. It wouldn't come back and I didn't know what to think. The cover to the battery compartment was closed and secure and I had charged the camera the night before. I took it back to the dock and swam some more hoping that it might dry out and we could charge it, thinking the battery might need a boost, but it would not charge. That night I opened the battery and SD compartment to see if anything I had recorded was able to be pulled off the disk. It was wet, I pulled the battery from the casing and it too was wet. The camera is basically ruined. I'm glad that others have had some success with this product, but not in my case and I would not recommend this to anyone.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 11, 2012
Great picture quality. The things to remember when using under water - make sure to close compartments properly or you get a water leak. Read the instructions. This does not come with an SD card That's why the price is so reasonable. We use the camera on land more than in the water. This camera is worth the price. Especially if you are gifting it to college or high school students. It would be a great holiday or birthday gift.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 16, 2009
I just recently ordered this camera, and it's nothing that I expected. The lighting is aweful, and the screen barely turns around to face me in the opposite direction. Also, it freezes.. I wish I would've known this before I took it out of the package! At least that way I could have recieved a full refund!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 9, 2009
I bought this camera because I love to snorkel..the first time it hit the water, the "waterproof" seal leaked and it stopped working. I called the company who was unsympathetic that I'd lost all my great footage of whale sharks while snorkeling with them. If you cherish your memories, don't buy this produst.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2014
for an under water camera it's not bright enough to see what setting you have it on. when you switch from still to movie
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10 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on June 22, 2009
This camera is absolute garbage. I bought one for our cruise to Grand Cayman. It died the second time it hit the water. Water got through the seal into the battery compartment. I figured it was just a dud. Exchanged it for another one and it died the first day in the pool. They are CRAP!
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on March 29, 2015
So far it's okay.In low level light,video is kind of dark.I love how easy i can transfer files via the USB/Video IN adapter.I hooked it up to my DVD recorder and it played home movies easily.The Vivitar Image Experience Software is a great tool.It took a while to start(It installed ,but was not responding right away)I haven't been in the water yet,so i can't give an opinion on waterproofness.Also the zoom is a fixed focus .I would recommend this to anyone who wants a lightweight,portable Digital Video /Camera and who isn't too serious about perfection.
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