I have went through 2 different models of this camera, and their designers are learning, but too slowly for my tastes.
The first one didn't have a lens cover, hmmmmm, in my lifestyle that got scratched real quickly, then the back lcd got a nice crack down the center of it when she was hiking and slipped and had it in her hand and it hit a rock... so it didn't stand up to the abuse too well.
you need xd cards...these are different from sd cards and you need a xd card reader! -- yeah, another different form of media...wahoo!
I use the new WP on the water with my kayak tours, it doesn't take good enough photos most of the time to have people want them, so I bought a Canon 800 with the waterproof housing! Now this Canon 800 is bomb proof -- I can toss it 60 feet off a cliff into the water and it is fine. But it is way more bulky, which isn't bad for me, because my guides are good at loosing things on tours and the easier it is to see, the less likely it is to loose.
That is one thing the WP has going for it - its size. I recommend it for snowboarding or skiing, but as far as the sun/light off of water goes it has horrible photo capturing abilitiesThe first WP I had only lasted a week. My wife accidently dropped it from about 4 feet onto a carpeted floor and it refused to turn back on.
The replacement has faired pretty well and takes decent pictures. I mainly use it while fishing from a sit-on-top kayak in saltwater. I carry it in my shirt pocket while wadefishing -- no problems with the waterproof claim.
The camera desperately needs a manual viewfinder. The screen is much too dim for sunny days.Over the years, I've always had difficulty carrying cameras with me while canoeing, kayaking and sailing. Keeping them dry but accessible the main problem.
This past summer while visiting a local camera shop I asked if there was any digital camera that might be weather resistant. The clerk reached up on a shelf and presented me with this little camera that is not only weather resistant, but WATERPROOF. The size and relative simplicity was the first thing that impressed me.
Being about the size of a cellular phone, I decided to 'modify' it before heading out to the lake. I put aside the short lanyard, stripped the insides out of a length of parachute cord and made a lanyard that could go around my neck. That way I can carry the camera in my shirt pocket or PFD pocket and have it ready in an instant for that quick shot that would normally be missed. I also put a spring loaded slide on the lanyard, so I could snug it up around my neck so it couldn't slip over my head in case of a capsize of the canoe or sailboat.
The underwater feature works fine. I practiced taking shots of the undersides of my canoe and sailboat. But without having a mask and weights around my waist, I wasn't able to see the objects to be photographed adequately for good shots. But, the fact that it operated underwater was enough. There probably isn't any weather condition that would keep this little camera from taking photos that would normally be missed with any other camera.
The only difficulty I have with it is seeing the subject clearly in the screen. There could be one major improvement...which the company may correct in future models....and that would be to have a conventional view finder in addition to the screen.
The instruction manual might seem rather formidable. The camera has as many functions as most other digital cameras...more than I'll ever use.
But for those who might pass this little gem by, due to it diminutive size, think twice. It's a prize anyone who partakes of active sports in all kinds of weather will value, every time you head out and want to record your adventure.
One other suggestion I'd strongly advise is to cover the screen with a 'screen saver' (a sheet of clear stick-on film that can be cut to size) that can be purchased at any camera shop. This camera will see and take a lot of abuse but a scratched screen would detract from seeing an object clearly and would be impractical, if not impossible, to replace.