dSLR Underwater Equipment checklist

Checklist and Total Cost of underwater photography Equipment
By Scott Gietler

Here is a short equipment checking you can use, when you are purchasing a new underwater photography system, covering the basics.


  • Camera body

  • Macro + wide angle lens

  • Flat port + dome port

  • Port extension, zoom gear, and diopter (if its required) for the WA lens

  • Port caps & housing cap (if they are not already included, check with your camera shop)

  • Dome port cover, dome port share (may be included)

  • 2 single sync cords or 1 "Y" sync cord, unless you are using fiber optics to fire your strobes. Then you will need 2 fiber optic cables

  • 2 strobes, make sure they include diffusers

  • 4 arms, ball and joint clamps, and necessary connectors & adapters

  • Focus light + focus light accessories (additional clamp and small arm may be needed)

  • Optional TTL converter

  • Storm case or pelican case for travel

  • Backups as your budget allows, if you will travel alot  (sync cords and strobes are usually the 1st backups purchased)

  • NiMH rechargable Batteries and chargers for everything. Make sure your chargers are 110/220 volts.

  • Lens cleaning kit (air blower, blower-brush, lens paper, lens cleaner)

  • A couple memory cards, 8 gig cards work well, Sandisk extreme have a good reputation


Underwater Photography Costs


Let's look at the approximate cost of some UW camera systems in the USA, as of early 2009.


Here's some sample systems we might purchase:


  • (used) Canon A570 + canon housing + Inon strobe + fiber optic cable + arm $800-$900

  • (used) Canon G9 + Ikelite housing + inon z240 strobe + sync cord + arm + stacked macro lenses $1200

  • (new) Nikon D90 + ikelite housing + macro lens, macro port, 2 ike ds-51 $3500

  • (new) Nikon D300 + S&S housing + 2 lenses, ports, 2 inon z240 $5000-$6000

  • (new) Nikon D300s + Subal housing + 2 lenses, ports, 2 ike ds-160 $10,000



Further Reading

Underwater photography packing list and flood insurance

Best locations for underwater photography

Underwater photography equipment

Underwater equipment photos of complete setups



The Best Service & Prices on u/w Photo Gear


Visit Bluewater Photo & Video for all your underwater photography and video gear. Click, or call the team at (310) 633-5052 for expert advice!


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