I recently got my hands on the new Paralenz underwater camera. This powerful little package has been making waves (excuse the pun) in the underwater world. An action camera specifically designed for underwater use it has some really well thought out features and specifications.
But I am getting ahead of myself! Let me start with the un-boxing.
The whole package of the Paralenz camera tells you it is well thought out and made for divers, by divers. Firstly, you can't help but be impressed by the included carry case that securely seats the camera and accessories, keeping them safely in one place for travel. This would always be an extra purchase with any other make of action camera. Secondly, inspecting the actual camera, it is shaped like a dive torch having a sturdy and substantial feel to it, feeling robust and of high quality (it is made from aluminium). It also has a weight to it that gives it a great feel in the hand.
Testing out the buttons and dials it has two main options. The selector ring (blue dial) is magnetic and allows you to select the main options (video, photo, settings etc) and the activation switch (raised, before the logo) allows you to select options and start/stop recording. Both have a smooth and distinct movement when used. In conclusion, the build quality is top notch.
At the rear of the camera, behind a glass window, is a small screen that shows the current mode and battery / SD card usage as well as the charging port for the USB-C cable. This will be the most notable difference from other action cameras..... The absence of a screen for viewing video. But what would a big screen be used for? To centre the picture during filming maybe? But the field of view in this camera is so wide anyway, and with experience you will get to become a good judge of distance and framing. In the real world, large screens on action cameras were a battery draining luxury (who actually played back footage direct on their camera???)
The accessories included here set the standards high once again: two different mounts, grease, spare o-rings, case, lanyard.... All would be extras by other manufacturers. It tells you this camera has been thought about and the end user considered.
The camera uses a wi-fi link to a dedicated app. This is something new for me and as not the most technologically minded individual I was not sure how easy I would find it, but it was actually very intuitive. Once the connection was found I could quickly view and save my first underwater footage from the camera! (pond life, 10cm underwater, but hey, we have to start somewhere, right?!)
So what initial conclusions do I have:
- Great package, well designed and feels very high quality
- Nice extras included
- Easy and intuitive to use