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Vivitar ViviCam 6200w review: Vivitar ViviCam 6200w

If you're after an affordable, robust underwater camera for the kids and don't really care about looks and size, the Vivitar ViviCam 6200w is a sensible buy.

Brice Lechatellier
2 min read

The Vivitar ViviCam 6200w is not really what we'd call a fashionable or trendy camera. Its bright yellow rubber body makes it hard to lose -- or hide -- which can be useful if you are constantly looking for your misplaced gear or accidentally dropping it in the surf or on the slopes.


Vivitar ViviCam 6200w

The Good

Waterproof to 10 metres. Rubberised, shockproof body. Easy to use underwater.

The Bad

No optical zoom. Focus free lens. Big and heavy.

The Bottom Line

If you're after an affordable, robust underwater camera for the kids and don't really care about looks or size, the Vivitar ViviCam 6200w is a sensible buy.

It's also quite chunky at 120mm by 78mm by 43mm and 230 grams without battery or memory card installed, which makes it difficult to swim with or slip inside your wetsuit while surfing but it provides a good grip for stability.

The camera controls have been kept simple, but were sometimes difficult to press because of their size and close proximity. The camera includes several scene modes including Auto, Sport, Night, Portrait, Landscape, Backlight and Underwater. You have access to few other manual features including manual white balance, exposure, ISO, colour, saturation and sharpness.

To power the 6200w, two AA batteries slot in next to the SD card under the waterproof door. The zoom is limited to three levels (2x, 3x, 4x) and you have to press the zoom button three times if you want to utilise the maximum zoom. We found ourselves not using the zoom because of added noise which made images quite grainy. The 6200w can also switch between landscape and macro mode quite easily through a switch placed on the left of the 2-inch LCD screen.

Storage-wise, the Vivitar ViviCam 6200w supports the widely-recognised Secure Digital (SD) card format, which means you can store up to 1GB of images. Unfortunately, the newer Secure Digital Higher Capacity (SDHC) card which offers twice the storage space -- up to 2GB -- is not supported. In addition, the 6200w includes 16MB of internal memory. Though 16MB is not a huge amount, we welcome any extra storage space, and the built-in memory should allow you to shoot approximately nine photos using the camera's maximum resolution of 6-megapixels.

The 6200w also offers video recording, so you can capture movement underwater, but the quality is limited to QVGA at 320x240 pixels.

Performance and Image quality
The overall quality of our photographs was good, even though we missed a few shots due to condensation while shooting in the water.

The battery indicator was also repeatedly misleading; it showed a completely drained battery and proceeded to shut down after only few minutes of use. This only occurred while we were in the water -- when switched back on after a few minutes on dry land, the indicator reversed to show a full battery.

The camera felt very sturdy in our hands and we weren't afraid of dropping it in the sand or experimenting with it while swimming among a group of surfers. Our final verdict -- the ViviCam 6200w didn't let us down. It is a robust camera which lives up to claims of its waterproof capabilities.