Lots of cameras are listed as being weatherproof, but some are a bit more resistant to weather than others. In this buyer’s guide to the best weatherproof cameras, we’ll list the cameras that we have exposed to heavy rain (or worse) and they’ve survived. In our view and our experience, they are the most weatherproof cameras. And yes, a few other cameras have died at our hands.
Weatherproof vs Waterproof
It’s important to remember that weatherproof and waterproof have different meanings. A waterproof camera can be taken below the surface of the water down to a specified depth. A weatherproof camera is not designed for that kind of treatment. It should withstand some rain, but if you submerge it, it’s likely to be the end of the story.
We’ve included some waterproof cameras in this buyer’s guide because they are also weatherproof.
Does rain affect a weatherproof camera?
While all the cameras in this guide continued to operate and deliver the quality of images and video that we’d expect from them, water droplets can give touchscreens an issue. In some cases, you may need to use the physical controls rather than the screen. However, a quick wipe will often make teh screen perform as normal.
Raindrops can also be problematic for the eye sensor of an electronic viewfinder. A drop or two on it can trick the camera into thinking that the viewfinder is in action.
If you find that the screen of your weatherproof camera isn’t displaying the image preview or menu, take a look at the viewfinder’s eye sensor. If that has a drop or two of water on it, a wipe with a cloth will solve the problem.
In really heavy rain, you may need to turn the eye sensor off and switch manually between the finder and the main screen.
What should I do if my camera gets wet?
Even if your camera is weatherproof, you shouldn’t open any ports or remove the lens when it’s wet.
Also, if your camera gets wet, avoid putting it down on a hard surface that will allow any water to pool around its base. That would mean it would be sitting in a puddle of water and the battery compartment may not appreciate it.
Naturally, you should try to dry your camera as soon as you can. Use a soft cloth and give it a good (but gentle) rub down until there’s not a drop of water visible.
Then, if possible, leave your camera somewhere well ventilated and warm, but not hot, for an hour or so. The aim is to let any last bits of moisture lurking in any crevices and seams to evaporate.
Even if your camera is waterproof, wait until you are 100% certain that your camera is dry before you open the battery or memory card compartment, change the lens or use one of the connection ports.