Underwater Photography Pre-dive Checklist

There is nothing worse than having a bad photo dive because you missed something.  Many of these items I have learned from the hard way so I have written then down and have them in my camera bag to ensure I don’t miss anything.   You must have patience and make sure every thing is prepared properly before you head out to the dive boat.  The following are key steps I follow before heading out to the boat.

Camera Pre-loading Checklist

  • Fully charged battery in the camera
  • Empty Memory card or film in the camera
  • Camera can turn on and off
  • Lens cover removed
  • O ring is clean and seated properly on housing

Post Loading Inspection

  • All viable seals sealed
  • Lens cover off
  • Camera on or turn on from the outside
  • Is the focus set to manual or auto focus
  • All levers and knobs touching their buttons and switches

Port Set up Checklist

  • Correct size dome or flat port for lens on camera
  • Diopter for lens/port type installed to lens
  • O-ring is clean and properly seated on housing and port
  • Port is properly latched and secure on housing

Strobe Set up Checklist

  • Fully charged batteries in the strobe
  • Sync Cords(s) for primary and slave strobe
  • Bolts and arms for stobe and necessary wrenches
  • Diffusers attached and string to keep them from floating away
  • Fire a test of the strobes to confirm they are working
  • Attach strobes to camera and take a test photo to ensure sync

Pre Dive Leak Check

  • Put the unit into the rinse tank and look for bubbles and leaks
  • Depress all of the buttons and levers to make sure they all work and are not leaking

Any other tips or rituals to add?

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