Based on recommendations in a previous question, I'm now looking at purchasing a couple of powerful flashes.

As far as i understand, almost all flash units are not waterproof at all. Since I take my gear into fairly hostile environments. A completely sealed unit would be ideal.

In light of recent experiences with cameras and water, I'd like to know if there are any waterproof (not diving equipment) camera flashes I can use with a Canon 5D?

Hope you can help!

  • Have you seen these? escuba.com.au/shop/… – MikeW Feb 10 '13 at 1:04
  • i Have not. But they look quite underpowered? That site seems to be lacking in detail... – NULLZ Feb 10 '13 at 1:25
  • You may be right - here's the manuf. site : sealife-cameras.com/accessories/lighting – MikeW Feb 10 '13 at 1:28
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    Do you really mean waterproof? Or simply weatherproof? They are very different. Will these be submerged in water or subjected to liquids other than water? – Itai Feb 10 '13 at 1:55
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    Just go buy a Yongnuo YN-560 II or a set of them. They are cheap. If you go swimming with your equipment by accident, buy a new one. – dpollitt Feb 13 '13 at 4:21

You might be best off taking your normal flash kit and mounting inside Otterboxes. Certainly this swimming shoot video on youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2tMs_boxzI) seems to deminstrate they're sufficently waterproof and IIRC either strobist or the comments on the video tell you in more detail what they did.


According to the product description, the Canon 600EX is weather sealed:

Dust and water resistance has been improved significantly as well: all moving parts and areas surrounding the flashes display and buttons are sealed for uninterrupted performance in harsh conditions. A new dust and water resistant adapter for the mounting foot creates a dust and water resistant seal between camera and flash.

  • Do you know if it'll survive a dunk underwater (no more than a meter)? – NULLZ Feb 11 '13 at 5:24
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    Don't know. Considering the size of the capacitor that must be in a powerful flash like the 600EX (or any flash, really), I'm sure I don't want to find out. Weather sealed certainly isn't the same as waterproof. – Caleb Feb 11 '13 at 6:02
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    @Caleb, correct, stupid auto-correct changing what I typed... Thanks for pointing it out. As an owner of the 600EX and a scuba diver it would NOT survive being submerged. It is weather sealed only, not waterproof. – AJ Henderson Feb 11 '13 at 16:56

As a scuba diver and a professional photographer, you most likely want something similar to an Ikelite. They are one of the more respected underwater flash producers, though they can be pricy. Additionally, they are designed to work well with underwater camera enclosures.

  • Yes, i have an ikelike housing for some of my smaller cameras. They are quite impressive. But since a housing for a 5D costs more than the actually camera, i can't justify the cost (since i don't actually go diving)... – NULLZ Feb 12 '13 at 1:43
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    @D3C4FF - the other way of looking at it is, is it worth taking the chance submerging your multiple thousand dollar piece of equipment in water without having it as protected as possible. There are watertight bags that work for a few feet, but there are also stories I've heard about those leaking even in only a few feet of water. I do understand where you are coming from though, I bought the 5DMiii simply because I didn't want to drop the big bucks for an underwater enclosure for my cheaper xTi (which still cost as much for an enclosure). Good underwater enclosures can be had for about $2k. – AJ Henderson Feb 12 '13 at 14:08
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    @D3C4FF - also, even if you don't get an underwater enclosure for the camera, they still make underwater flashes. – AJ Henderson Feb 12 '13 at 14:08
  • Can you suggest and underwater flash? – NULLZ Feb 14 '13 at 0:16
  • @D3C4FF - I've not used it, but I'd hazard that the DS51 Substrobe is probably sufficient for your needs. The SeaLife SL961 is another decent possibility. – AJ Henderson Feb 14 '13 at 0:23

Not that I know of, or have come across. But there are lots of waterproof bags for smart phones/MP3 players for swimming/surfing.

Select the right one for your flash of choice and then you'll need to think about how to fire the flash. My wife's bag for swimming with her phone has a waterproof outlet for a 3mm audio jack for headphones. There is no reason why this could not be used to connect a lead from the camera hot shoe to the flash hot shoe.

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