Totally impervious to mud and submersion in salt water
Separate Video Button lets you record instantly
Simple to use without manual
Touchscreen scratches easily
GPS sucks battery life
Small buttons hard to navigate with gloves on
Flash is too bright for close-ups
Switching settings is a pain
The AW100 is tough and takes great underwater photos, but navigating the controls and menus can be a pain.
Ease of Use The AW100 sports a series of small buttons to the side of the LCD screen that are a challenge to navigate bare-handed and all but impossible to work with bulky snowboard gloves on. On the plus side, photo-to-photo time is short compared with the other cameras tested.
Features/Settings 20 scene modes and in-camera image editing lets you tweak your images as needed, but good luck trying to navigate the menus. The GPS feature records where photos are taken, but tends to drain the battery.
Image & Video The images came out clear, especially in our snow and underwater tests, and the black and white setting looks great. Video recording is clear, with excellent slow motion modes.
Durability 5-foot drops onto concrete were nothing to the AW-100, and 2 hours of submersion in Kauai’s saltwater had no effect on the camera whatsoever. It followed me through the 2012 NorCal Tough Mudder, wading through ice water and chest-deep mud pits, and the locking flaps kept mud and water out of the camera’s interior. The LCD screen and body are prone to scratching.
Value At $350, the camera’s price is about average for the category.
Specs 16.1 megapixels 3-inch LCD Full HD video (1080p @30fps) Built-in GPS Waterproof to 33 feet Shockproof up to 5 feet Freezeproof to 14F