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Video Test: Shockproof, waterproof and childproof cameras for school holidays

Tough cameras are shock and water proof but with school holidays around the corner, will they withstand a vacation with the kids?
The cameras were subjected to seawater, sand and drop tests by a six-year-old.
The cameras were subjected to seawater, sand and drop tests by a six-year-old.ST PHOTO: TREVOR TAN

Proving which are shockproof, waterproof and child-proof

As the June school holidays roll around, many parents are spending more time with their children, taking them outdoors or overseas.

But while it would be great to capture snapshots of these holiday moments from a child's point of view, many parents are rightly wary of handing their children a digital camera or a smartphone.

Operations manager Leonard Ho, 42, said that a child-proof camera is a must-have for his daughter, Olivia, who is six years old.

 

"My daughter snatches away my phone to take pictures all the time. I'm so fearful she will drop my phone into a pond or pool," he said. "There are not many models of cameras to choose from, and it is hard to tell which can survive hard knocks and nasty falls in the hands of a child."

To help out parents like Mr Ho, The Straits Times tested five tough point-and-shoot cameras, which cost between $398 and $499.

These cameras are mostly targeted at adult hikers or divers as they are waterproof and shockproof - making them ideal to withstand a child's rough handling.

Many of them have rubber bumpers around the sides, to protect the cameras from accidental bangs and spills. Most are also dustproof and freeze-proof, and come with features like location tagging and basic internal memory.


How we tested the cameras

The Straits Times put all five cameras to the test at the beach in East Coast Park.

1. We dropped all the cameras multiple times from a height of 1m onto a smooth concrete floor.

2. The cameras were then submerged in less than a foot of seawater, for about a minute each. After that, we gave the cameras to six-year-old Olivia, Mr Ho's daughter, to play with on the beach.

3. She buried the cameras in the sand, threw them into the water and dropped them onto the ground.

4. After the test was over, we rinsed all the cameras off with tap water.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 01, 2016, with the headline 'Cameras made of sterner stuff'. Print Edition | Subscribe