Hardy products, such as Panasonic's range of Toughbooks, Dell's XFR laptop range, or Olympus's venerable range of Tough cameras, are a tricky sell. Not only do weather proofed, shock-resistant products command inflated prices, it's also difficult to convince the average electronics buyer that they really need the extra strength …
I had my Canon EOD400D Digital SLR out in -25°C (Kiruna, Sweden) taking long exposure pics for almost an hour before it finally froze.
And this "toughened" camera can only do -10°C? Either there being very conservative or they dont have any cold weather capabilities worth bragging about...
How about condensation and air humidity?
I assume these are factors when conjuring up specs giving a definite working temperature. Hey it might even work for 2 days at -10. Yours gave up after an hour? I should also check other camera makes' operating temperature...
Another Possible Advantage...
...of this camera is that it looks inexpensive. There are situations where appearing to be "Just another tourist" can be useful, in fact I recommended one for my friend's trip to the PRC.
The only problems he encountered were that the flat front led to many fingerprints on the front glass, and, as mentioned, a less than brightest viewfinder.
Have had one for over a year now, i got the older version of this with ~10mpix for about £250.
I use it sea kayaking and on the river and i surf, its survived everything. I got my best videos shot ever of 20ft long basking sharks underwater right under the kayak with this wee thing. Its permanently attached with a karabiner and 2 ft shock-cord. Much more portable than my big canon and i can use it 1 handed sitting in surf as well.
If i had to get another compact camera you don't have to worry about i would get another one.
I have the previous generation of this camera, the 1030 SW. It's a really, really robust beast of a camera. It's been in water plenty of times. I've dived with it beyond 10 metres a few times.
In fact, it's been to 14 metres (worked perfectly), 16 metres (buttons wouldn't work beyond about 15 metres), and 19 metres and survived. 19 metres of seawater is lot of pressure, and it's really amazing the camera survives this, as most photography at that sort of depth involves specialist camera housings.
Under water it takes OK pictures. Nothing amazing, and back scatter from the flash ruins pictures unless the water is very very clear, or you are very close to your subject. But, being able to take a pocket size camera with you on a shallow dive is really great. If it can take being shoved in my BCD and spending 45 minutes below 10 metres, it can pretty much take anything.
My experience with the Tough 8000
If you are into adventure sports or accident prone I would seriously think about buying this camera. I own the Tough 8000 and it still works fine after some serious abuse. Last year when I was in Canada I left it on the roof of the car after stopping to take some photos. While overtaking (at ~ 90mph) the camera fell off the top of the car and bounced down the road where it was hit by a car and finally landed in a ditch. Lucky the person behind us saw the camera fall off (and hit his car!!!) and was able to recognise us from the photos when we stopped at the next scenic location. (Luckily he also didn't seem to mind that the camera smacked into his car). The camera ended up with a few scratches and a ever so slight dent but is still working perfectly (and is still waterproof). I couldn't recommend it highly enough if you want a robust camera. A few of my friends have since bought them!
i think this whole series so far has been great, i am rather acedent prone, and do do alot of things that require tough cameras, i have had to send my camera back 2 times for repair, but my golly did olympus do a good job in repairing them for me and free of charge, i also do alot of scubva diving and have gone through quite alot of cameras, and am no usign this for pcitrues underwater, bought hte houseing which for a woppin £200 does give it a miminuim max depth of 40meters however i knwo peopel how have taken it past 50meters and still workign fine, the best thign is though if the housign does leak underwater the camera itself is also waterproof so it might still survie and well i did have it leak once due to noickign the catch off, at 25 meters down came up a bit when i got the surface the camera was apsoltly fine (wet ofc) but still works,
a great camera and this one looks like it is living up to itrs name
I have the immediate predecessor to this camera, the Tough 8000. It is great for going anywhere and not having to worry that you will damage it by dropping or anything but picture quality is really subpar. I thought the problem was me, so I got a friend who has been doing professional photography for 19 years and he could not get a good picture out of it either.
Also while investigating picture quality I read many places where the 8000's seals failed and the camera ended up with water inside and had to be returned (not from going over the 10 meter threshold, sometimes it happens in pools and while people were in the sea still standing on sand). If it happens within 1 year you can send it back but the camera you will get back to you will be a refurb. If it happens a second time they will NOT replace again.
Also in the small print for the 8000, the seals are only guaranteed for 1 year. People were quoted £100 to replace seals.
Yes, I am sorry I bought the Tough 8000 based on glowing "professional" reviews.