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Thread: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

  1. #1
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    GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    I've just been taking a few shots in the rain. So far no problems, but it is scary
    watching drops of water riding the lens tubes into the camera as the lens retracts. Anyone have much experience with these cameras and the rain?

    Tony Rose at PopFlash alerted me to the Sea and Sea Underwater Housing for the GRD II. Has anyone used one of these?
    I've only seen them advertised as a Sea and Sea camera, but Tony assured me they can be brought separately, housing only.

    Best,

    Mitchell

  2. #2
    veriwide
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    I use the GH-1 adapter on my GR all of the time. I have a UV filter on it as well so the actual lens and barrel are protected all... even from dust. Don't know how far I would push it in the rain, but certainly there will not be any drops following the lens back into the body ! Ouch !

    Bernard

  3. #3
    hiro
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    Mitchell, I had the exact same experience as you over Xmas, photographing waterfalls in the rain with my GX100, it was impossible to keep water off the lens barrel (or front element) no matter how I tried to shield the camera. My solution was to attach the HA-2 & DW6 wideangle, which totally encloses the zoom, once I had done this I was able to shoot with some confidence for the rest of the day instead of desperately snatching occasional shots. Comparing notes with other GX100 users, it seems many people are leaving the HA-2 permanently attached with a UV filter on the front in order to make the camera weatherproof. Unfortunately this rather negates the pocketability of the camera, but in wet weather I think there is probably no alternative. In my case I just kept the camera on a neck strap under my coat since with the DW6 on it would no longer fit into my inside jacket pocket. The DW6 is sharp enough that you can shoot with confidence, effectively making the GX100 a 19-55mm zoom camera. I would think you could do the same thing with the equivalent adaptor gizmos for the GRDII.

  4. #4
    Sean_Reid
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    One of the challenges is that even if the lens area is partially sealed off, neither the GX100 nor the GR2 is weather sealed so its possible for water to enter through switches, buttons, etc.

    Cheers,

  5. #5
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    Would it be a practical proposition in terms of manufacturing to make cameras like the GRD2 and the GX100 weatherproof?

    —Mitch/Bangkok
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  6. #6
    hiro
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    Would it be a practical proposition in terms of manufacturing to make cameras like the GRD2 and the GX100 weatherproof?
    It certainly ought to be, and really I think it's remiss of manufacturers not to be thinking along those lines with cameras aimed at serious photographers, such as these Ricohs.

    My understanding is the usual approach to such things is to put a flexible membrane on the inner surface of the case to isolate the buttons (and holes) from the innards. Eg. this is common with computer keyboards to make them spill-proof. Of course over time the membrane may wear out, but I think it would be worth doing. (Rotary dials could not be sealed in this way however.)

    Another approach, again found on keyboards, is simply to have a protruding collar around the hole under the button, and a similar overlapping protrusion on the under side of the button to create a simple labyrinth seal which will keep splashes out (though not immersion of course). This approach will work with dial spindles too, and is effectively zero cost to do. (Perhaps manufacturers are already taking such measures though, I haven't dismantled a camera to find out. I do know that my GX100 survived being rained on though, at least once I'd enclosed the zoom with the adaptor tube.)

  7. #7
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    I think there's a Olympus P/S that's waterproof.
    So it can be done.

    Best,

    Mitchell

  8. #8
    Super Duper
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    There are also the Ricoh Caplio 500G and the Fuji HD (the latter is reviewed on Sean's site ).

  9. #9
    simplebot
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    Quote Originally Posted by veriwide View Post
    I use the GH-1 adapter on my GR all of the time. I have a UV filter on it as well so the actual lens and barrel are protected all... even from dust. Don't know how far I would push it in the rain, but certainly there will not be any drops following the lens back into the body ! Ouch !

    Bernard
    Even using the GH-1 and filter doesn't make it totally impervious to dust. I keep it on my GRD2 almost all the time and I already have dust inside the lens elements. This only after one month of use, doing pretty much all indoors shooting. Perhaps it was something that was already in the camera... I don't know.
    The battery compartment seems to allow for quite a bit of air movement through the camera when I sealed off around the lens element and slightly blew air through it.
    Oh well, off to CRIScam it goes... the dust speck shows up quite large, and is pretty distracting on most images.
    I guess one of the drawbacks of a small sensor camera is that any dust will show up huge, since it's covering more pixels than the same size speck on a DSLR sensor.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Y.B.Hudson III's Avatar
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    Re: GRD II, Rain, and Underwater Housing

    The Pentax Optio w30 is waterproof to a depth of 2 m, and is class 5 dust proof. 3x optical zoom, 6.3mm-18.9mm, 7.1 mp...with rebates you can pick one up for $200±. Optically, It's not in in the same class as the Grd...but...It's a lot of fun in the pool...

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