Surfers - Things That Matter
3 feet or 18 feet rated camera depth?
For surfing IT DOES NOT MATTER! Even in double overhead surf. My old Pentax WPi of 4 years is only rated to 3 feet and it works fine. I lone it to my friends all the time in big surf. The depths on these cameras are rated after being that deep for 2 or more hours.
With Video - It matters! You should only use the optical zoom with video because you can not zoom in on your computer with video... Unless you have an expensive edit program... and lots of time.
With Still Shots- It does not matter! (When in the water) You will want the widest angle possible with still pictures. The more optical zoom you use the greater chances of a blurry surfer shot and the surfer out of the frame. You can always crop and zoom in on your computer later.
Mega Pixels? It matters. When you're editing your still surfer shots you'll be amazed on how much you can zoom in and crop a surfer shot on your computer.
Weight? It matters. An addtional ounce or two does make a big difference in the feel and comfort in getting a steady surfer shot. The Olympus 1030sw is the heaviest out right now and you can definitely get clumsy when trying to hold steady.
28mm Wide Angel? It matters. It's very difficult sometimes when trying to get an instant last second shot of a surfer coming fast down the line. You'll wind up having a lot of shots with the surfer halfway out the picture. The 28mm wide angle will aliminate much of that.
HD Video? It matters. Specially when your filming a nice long wave. 640x480 will take in nice videos but when the surfer gets further away the HD will keep it clearer.