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Having kicked myself countless times for not having an extra camera battery for my other digital "land camera", I decided to get an extra battery for my new dive camera. Im very glad I did. Without it I would have missed all of the pictures and video from the last of 3 dives it was used on (most of which are the best ones of the whole day.) Be wise and get at least one. If youre going on a multi-day trip I think its best to have the extra wall-charger as well. Money well invested I say.
As a perk for buying the Sealife DC500 Elite underwater camera kit I received this bag for free. "Free stuff" often times ends up being "cheap stuff" but this bag is an exception to my previous observations. Its a very nice, sturdy bag. I added a shoulder strap to it and put all the belongings I needed for my bunk on the live-aboard boat trip to Catalina - including my big, padded camera case. It all fit with room to spare, and its even got the SCUBA.COM logo on the side so I felt all stylish and Dive-savvy with it over my shoulder. Just add some salt stains and itll be perfect for an extra dive gear bag! Im sure its up to the challenge.
the camera as a stand alone (on land) is simple and small but lacks many of the nice features many digital point & shoots of the same size or price offer – but most of those can’t go underwater with you….so i like this one just fine. these are my findings after a 5 dive, live-aboard boat trip to catalina. 1. buy at least one extra battery and the external charger. otherwise you may miss out on a dive or two while the battery recharges, inside the camera, on it’s docking cradle (it takes longer too.) 2. i purchased a new major name brand high speed 1 gig sd card with it and found nothing wrong with picture taking or playback performance (both still pictures and full videos). i can film an hour of underwater video! but, expect to replace your battery before you fill the memory card with video. still photos take much less "juice". 3. there is no zoom when using the video feature, so i just made due. 4. i like the wide angle lens, but it does leave little dark areas on the corners of the picture (nothing major though.) remove it for close up still photos. 5. the very short, black, nylon-string double-clip that comes with the wide angle lens used to connect it to the camera case is flimsy plastic. one clip snapped partly off, the other stretched, i almost lost the lens! i replaced mine with some sturdy and more flexible/forgiving parachute cord and a smaller connecting ring. 6. make sure you get some extra moisture munchers (the sealife version - in the long drinking straw-diameter tubes) to keep the inside of the camera housing dry. 7. the microphone pick up is very effective underwater, so dont connect anything hard or clunky to the camera rig if you plan on shooting video. i had an aluminum lobster gauge clipped to the same ring as my lens. while filming my free-diving descent, it bumped the casing over and over again it was loud and annoying upon playback.