Choosing a dive computer can be a daunting task for both beginner and experienced divers. The task's importance lies in the fact that a dive computer is a vital tool for divers. This small device ensures your safety underwater, providing crucial information such as depth, dive time, and the amount of nitrogen absorbed in your body
All of these contribute to preventing decompression sickness (DCS) and other diving-related injuries. So, what is a dive computer, and why are they essential? Let's dive into this while also discussing critical factors to consider when selecting a dive computer.
Dive Computer Configurations: Wrist vs. Console
Dive computers come in two main configurations: wrist and console. The wrist dive computer is worn like a watch, making it a popular choice for recreational diving. The console dive computer is connected to the regulator and provides additional information, such as tank pressure. Its all-in-one interface is favoured by divers who prefer a consolidated information source.
Analog Gauges vs. Dive Computers
Although analog gauges have been widely used by divers, dive computers have gradually become a necessity. Dive computers provide accurate and real-time readings and manage complex decompression needs. However, analog gauges still find favour for their reliability, simplicity, and quick-glance convenience.
The Convenience of Transmitters
Some dive computers come with a transmitter connected to the scuba tank's regulator. This device detects tank air pressure and transmits the data to the computer, adding an extra layer of convenience for divers.
Dive Computer Styles: Finding Your Fit
Dive computers come in different styles, from casual watch-style designs to bulky console computers suitable for technical diving. Choosing a style that is comfortable and fits your diving needs is crucial.
Dive Computer Algorithms: Selecting the Right Fit
Dive computers utilize algorithms like Buhlmann ZHL-16C, RGBM, and VPM-B to determine dive time and nitrogen saturation levels. Select a computer that aligns with your diving style and algorithm familiarity.
Battery Life: A Key Factor
Your dive computer's battery life is an essential factor. Opt for a device with long battery life or one with rechargeable or replaceable batteries.
Additional Features: A World of Possibilities
Extra features like an easy-to-read backlit screen, Nitrox support, and data analysis connectivity add functionality and adaptability to your dive computer.
Ease of Reading: Clarity is Key
An easy-to-read screen with a large enough font size will provide accurate and timely information, crucial for safe diving.
Backlighting: For Those Night Dives
Backlighting allows divers to read the screen even in complete darkness or low light conditions, making it an essential feature for those who often dive at night.
Nitrox Options: Adapting to Your Diving Style
For those who plan on diving with Nitrox, a special dive computer with built-in Nitrox support is crucial.
Choosing a Brand/Model: A Plethora of Options
With countless models and brands available, such as Scubapro, Seac, Mares, Cressi, Oceanic, Shearwater, and Suunto, you're sure to find a dive computer that meets your diving needs.
Conclusion: Choosing The Right Dive Computer
Understanding what a dive computer is and its importance are the first steps towards safe and informed diving. While choosing the perfect dive computer can seem like navigating murky waters, cosidering factors like configuration, style, algorithms, battery life, and additional features can significantly simplify the process. Ultimately, finding a dive computer that aligns with your diving style and needs will ensure a safer, more enjoyable underwater experience. Check out a range of dive computers here at Dive Newcastle Online Dive Store.