Olympus 850 waterproof camera

I was wondering if anyone here has used this camera, and if so what’s your opinion of it?

If it’s anything like the 1030
it is a great little camera.

If you can swing the extra $100
get the 1030. It’s waterproof to 30ft. and it does a very good job with video.

Just got the 1030
this past week and tried it out on (and under) the water- very happy with it so far.

I’ve seen it on amazon.com for around $320. If you’re interested in picture quality I can post a link to the pictures I took today- I’ll have more tomorrow of Lake Jocassee.


We’ve Had It For a Few Months
Got it as a replacement for our old 3mp Olympus that went swimming earlier this spring. So far, so good. The “Sport” setting doesn’t take good pics for us, but I like it so far on the other settings. I usually use the Landscape/portrait when paddling. Here’s a sample of a couple pics with it, one paddling, one non-paddling. WW

Opted against that one because…

– Last Updated: Aug-31-08 8:39 AM EST –

We had the 770 (or 740?) SW, the model line that preceded the 850 and 1030. We found that camera to be waterproof as advertised - it hung off my wrist for an hour and a half snorkeling in salt water and lived in my PFD pocket thru lots of wet work. The thing was built tough and the only problem with it was the controls were a pain to work with gloves on.

However, as tough as it was built it still didn't survive a surf session in my PFD pocket. The gate covering the USB port loosened and opened up in one or another capsize, and dead camera.

Our experience with that is the biggest single reason we chose the 1030 over the 850 to replace it. If you are going to be using this thing kayaking in whatever conditions, you want the really solid full metal housing and the pressure resistance you get in the 1030. I would guess the 850 is a nice enough camera, but it wasn't our pick for kayaking.

I just found this: Pentax Optio W60
waterproof. I want a camera to use kayaking. just not many options for waterproof. KK

W60 disappointment
I was not happy with the image quality of the W60 Pentax that I tried. It went back to Amazon. I’m used to the quality of my Pentax SLR’s, and the 6MP one beats the 10MP W60 to an unbelievable extent. The W60 was convenient to use, but the photos looked like a 1MP camera…I suppose I could have gotten a bad copy. Has anyone else tried this one?

I’m going to check out the IQ of the Olympus 1030 that Wetzool and Celia have.


same story with W30
Alan, I have been taking images on the first generation Olympus SW720 and only recently purchased an additional SW1030.

I borrowed a Pentax W30 (older model) and the comparison between Olympus and Pentax showed a superior image quality with the Olympus.

Pentax dos not have a water droplet reduction technology for the front of the lens and often images will be blurred with water on lens.

The resolution of the W30 was in my opinion pretty average.

See for yourself images with Olympus waterproof cameras at http://www.flickr.com/photos/gnarlydog/sets/72157600524255302/

Olympus stylus 790 SW
Picked one up a few months ago. Don’t recall exact price, but it seemed good, as though it was being cleared out for the newer 85o and 1030 models. It’s been on several wet trips. Even shot some fun underwater stuff in Lake Michigan. It’s resolution and color rendition are surprisingly good. Bright and vibrant pics. For true photography, it can’t do what my Nikon D-70 does. But then the Nikon can’t get wet.


Celia, wet zool,gnarleydog
What is the lag time between shots with the 1030?

Too Late
I just came back from Circiut City with one. Can’t wait to try it out. KK

once you have some images
I mean “real” pix, not just beckyard shots, post them to me as personal email.


I’ve got the 770. It does great out on the water w/me. I do keep it tied to my kayak so I can take pictures and not worry about it dropping overboard (it does not float) The pictures are of nice quality, zoom works well. The buttons are really small and if I have gloves on I have to remove them. The only real problem I’ve had is bright sunlight. I just can not see the screen at all so I will sort of point the camara at what I think is the right area and take the picture. The picture does come out very nice!! Although sometimes more or less not exactly what you thought you were pointing the camera at.

Second that
Congrats on the new toy. I’ve had my eye on that camera for a while now - would love to see some action shots when you get some. Cheers, Carl

I have a 720 SW
And am quite pleased with it with one reservation: The wide angle is not wide enough.

I would go with the 1030 as it has the equivalent of a 28mm wide angle. Remember, it is difficult to step back in a boat when you need to include the whole group.


I did get the
1030. After looking at both the 850 & 1030 I decided on the 1030. It will be the 13th before I actually get to use it on a paddle trip. I probably will take it to Universal Studios with me on the 6th so I can play with all the features & get to know it. KK

that’s one of the reasons I also
purchased the SW1030 in addition to the SW720.

The wide angle!

The other reason is that it takes rather decent movies in motion .jpg file (way better then .mov on the SW720). Excellent little camera for surf work.


Olympus was our choice
my wife has the olymus 720sw and i have the 1030sw. Both are excellent point and shoot cameras. i would spend the extra dollars ( i did) and get the 1030. the deciding factor between either olympus vs the penax was that the pentax had a longer “shutter lag”.

Now, what we need is a slr water proof small camera

but that doesn’t exist yet.

soon you will have full size CCD
compact cameras that you will need to put in a waterproof case and there will be your “small DSLR”

Olympus has brought out the micro 4/3 system that is a miniature DSLR.

Not sure on waterproof cases yet.

Wait 3 more weeks and Photokina Show in Germany will reveal the latest…