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I recently tried snorkeling for the first time. I was on the Big Island of Hawaii, celebrating my husband’s birthday, when he stated he wanted to eye some fish in the clear, blue waters off the Kohala Coast. I was nervous, but agreed to his request, and boy am I glad that I did. My mind was thoroughly blown by the gorgeous coral and marine life in those idyllic waters.

I’d love nothing more than to show you exactly what I saw down there, but I can’t. I didn’t have an underwater camera or waterproof smartphone housingToo bad I didn’t have the Polaroid XS80 hi-def action cam. The company announced its newest consumer-level adventure camera this week, and the form factor seems very handy for snorkeling. 

Typical waterproof point-and-shoot cameras and smartphones present flat boxes that are just too easy to fumble around with under water. The alternative? There’s GoPro, but a head-mounted cam would get in the way if I had to remove my mask. I like the barrel shape of the premium Sony Action Cam, but $200 (and up) seems a little steep for my occasional use-case.

Enter the XS80. This mid-range barrel shooter boasts a few decent specs: 1080p and 720p HD recording (at 30 FPS), waterproof to 30 feet, still capture (at 16MP, 5MP and 3MP), single/burst/time lapse modes, 120 degrees field of view, microSD slot (up to 32GB) and HDMI port. There’s even a G sensor for auto rotation and anti-shake technology. And if I ever do need it mounted to my head, it includes a helmet mount.

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The XS80 costs $130, which is not cheap, but also not the most expensive. It’s about on par with competitors like GoPro. If you’re looking for a higher-end version from Polaroid with Wi-Fi, the company also offers XS100 for $160. (Note: Supply seems to be out as of this writing, but if you’re interested in the XS80, keep your eyes peeled here for re-stocking updates.)

If I put this in my summer-time arsenal, maybe I will never again miss photo opportunities like this.

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Beautiful, isn’t it? This is what I saw snorkeling, but the pic isn’t mine. Photo credit: Explore-The-Big-Island.com

Have you ever done amateur underwater photography? Let us know if you have a favorite waterproof action cam or other consumer-level, snorkel-worthy gear in the comments.

Easily Capture your Extreme Adventures in Stunning HD with the Affordable Polaroid XS80 Mountable Hi-Definition Action Camera

-The perfect accessory for adventures on the mountain, in the water, or wherever the action takes you-

Ridgefield Park, NJ – Polaroid, the 75-year-old brand synonymous with instant imaging, sharing and fun, is expanding its line of mountable hi-definition action video cameras with an affordable model that allows consumers to easily capture their every adventure. At only $129.99, the XS80 action camera joins the already extensive Polaroid product offerings, and will provide users with the ability to take 1080p video at 30 frames per second (FPS), guaranteeing that they never miss an instant of the excitement. (http://www.polaroidstore.com/products/sport-and-action-video-cameras/polaroidxs80-hd-1080p-16mp-waterproof-sports-action-video-camera-with-mount.htm)

Be it biking, surfing, mountain climbing or any other outdoor activity, Polaroid offers the perfect action video camera for action sports enthusiasts and fun-seeking families to capture and share all of life’s thrilling adventures – at a price that is very affordable. Built in a tough waterproof housing with anti-shake technology, the Polaroid XS80 is also shock and impact resistant allowing it to be used in all types of daring environments. Additionally a variety of mounts that come standard allow video and still images to be captured virtually anywhere. (http://www.polaroidstore.com/store/categories/sport-and-action-video-cameras.htm)

“The Polaroid XS80 is an exciting addition to our line of hi-definition sports video cameras, which bring the Polaroid ideal of sharing life instantly to a new level,” said Polaroid President and CEO, Scott W. Hardy. “Whatever the sport or activity, the XS80 offers the portability, durability and versatility needed to capture and share life’s most exhilarating and memorable moments in an instant, all at an affordable price point.”

Offered by C&A Licensing LLC, an authorized Polaroid licensee, the Polaroid XS80 hi-definition action video camera comes standard with a helmet mount and a limited one year warranty.

Polaroid XS80 Specs and Information:
• HD 1080p, HD 720p, VGA
• Waterproof up to 30′
• Motion record (video and photo)
• 16MP, 5MP, 3MP VGA
• 3 Photo Modes (single, burst (10), time lapse (1,5,10,30,60))
• Micro SD Card up to 32GB
• 120 Degree field of view
• G Sensor (auto rotation)
• Anti-Shake
• Built in Lithium ion battery
• HDMI output
• High Impact & Shock Proof

The Polaroid XS80 has a suggested retail price of $129.99 and is currently available at www.polaroid.com, Canadian Tire, Tiger Direct and other select retailers.

The Polaroid Brand
Across several generations, people regard Polaroid as one of the most trusted, well-respected and recognizable brands when it comes to technology. The history of Polaroid began 75 years ago, with its roots stemming back to Polaroid instant film, cameras and camera accessories – thus was the introduction of the famous Polaroid Classic Border Logo which is still recognized today as a true landmark of photography.

In recent years, Polaroid has expanded its range of products in consumer electronics and photography, such as instant and digital cameras, high-definition camcorders, mobile printers, tablets, flat-screen TVs and more. People can expect to see new Polaroid products that will deliver the fun, instant gratification and value that the brand has long stood. For more information, visit http://www.polaroid.com or http://www.polaroidstore.com.