This article will help you arrive at the best diving watch, narrowing down the choices from the unlimited selections on the market. Primarily, a diving watch, also referred to as a dive computer watch is a decompression meter or a personal decompression computer. It is basically used by underwater divers in measuring the depth and time in order to obtain a safe ascent profile, hence, preventing the unfavourable decompression sickness.
Through the following product reviews, you will learn about the best dive computer ever produced, including a comprehensive guideline that talks about the features and options you would want from this product. Today, the modern and top rated dive computers have so many functions. So, understanding each one is equally essential as this device makes diving safer, easier, and more efficient all at the same time.
Keep in mind that these advances can enhance the diver’s capability to stay underwater, offering them a new dimension through multi-level systems. The best dive computers are very dynamic with active adjustments throughout a dive with continuous tracking and calculation of theoretical nitrogen uptake. This makes the biggest advantage over a dive table because it takes into account the decline in pressure, while a diver ascends towards the shallower depths. On that note, below are the top dive computer reviews, giving each diver the perfect reasons why such a device is a must!
Best Dive Computer Reviews 2018
#1 Suunto ZOOP Wrist Unit Scuba Diving Computer
The Suunto ZOOP Wrist Unit Scuba Diving Computer is an entry-level computer with an average rating of 4.5-Stars on Amazon. This dive watch computer has a comprehensible interface with a highly-readable screen, audible alarms, user changeable battery, and an integral dive planner. Through the Suunto’s Reduced Gradient Bubble Model (RGBM) algorithm, it also features a 50% maximum of nitrox and air.
The Suunto ZOOP is the best wrist dive computer and perfect for the sport divers who are in search of a convenient device with a very affordable price. Through its air and nitrox design, this device can give you the different diving situations’ specifics, such as decompression. Compared to the Gekko, its predecessor, the Suunto ZOOP is PC downloadable for a simplified menu system.
Its two operating modes, which are the Air and Nitrox, allow you to compare and evaluate your performance in diving through its specifically-designed PC-integrated RGBM for a temperature display, a full decompression stop data, a 50-hour profile, and a logbook memory. This is the best value dive computer, so far, providing an ultra-bright phosphorescent display during low light conditions and during the night time.
Its impressive rating is attributed to the Suunto ZOOP’s best selling points, including its ease of use, Nitrox ability, altitude setting, audible alarms, big and very readable display, manual diver data recording, user-replaceable battery, and the personal adjustment options. Indeed, this is the best dive computer watch, considering its decent battery life as well, sturdy protective faceplate cover, durable strap, programmable Nitrox, and its conservative algorithm.
#2 Cressi Giotto Wrist Computer
Also with an incredible rating of 4.5-Stars is the Cressi Giotto Wrist Computer. This is the best air integrated dive computer to date because it is the very first mixed gas computer that has been created by Cressi. It is a digital online class, unlike other top dive computers around, offering a gauge guard, a high-definition screen, and large numerical displays.
Considered as the best scuba computer by many divers, the Giotto features a 3-button interface, allowing an effortless air programming, plus gauge mode and Nitrox mode. It makes use of a new algorithm through the Cressi and Bruce Wienke collaboration. Based on the Haldane model, the Giotto also makes use of an integrated RGBM factor, allowing a safe decompression calculation in recurring multi-day diving activities and with mixtures.
This dive wrist computer’s software can handle two hyper-oxygenated mixtures that can be chosen during the dive. It has technical features tissues that offer nine saturation half-times between 2.5 and 480 minutes. Its dive program features a full dive data processing, while its gauge setting option includes a timer and a depth gauge. It also allows the user to switch the unit of measurement from metric to imperial.
All in all, the Giotto is the most efficient wrist dive computer with user-replaceable batteries, a replaceable protective display screen, auditory and visual alarms, backlit display, a built-in clock and calendar, and a complete log book for the dive profile that also allows a full reset if necessary. The Cressi Giotto Wrist Computer is certainly the best dive computer for the money, a must-have for every diver, instead of renting one every dive.
#3 Cressi Leonardo Scuba Dive Computer Wrist Watch
Meanwhile, the Cressi Leonardo Scuba Dive Computer Wrist Watch is another top-rated dive computer wrist with an average rating of 4-Stars. It is a full RGBM dive computer with air and Nitrox modes and an audible alarm. Unlike other devices on the market, this one has larger digits, which make it more readable.
According to dive computers reviews, this model offers an elegant expression combined with a functional design, making it ideal for the sport divers. Its single button interface allows an effortless programming of air, nitrox, and the gauge modes. The high-definition screen provides large numerical displays, but still has a compact design, which makes it travel-friendly.
The Leonardo can deliver critical information through its distinct audible alarm and highly-visible battery life indicator. Every use, this computer can be reset fully, allowing you to record data every each dive. This is the best dive gear for many enthusiasts, as it relatively fits their budget too.
Among the wrist dive computers, the Leonardo excels its primary purpose, displaying the critical information at a given instance without having to dive with secondary screens. It passes with flying colors all throughout, including before, during, and after dives. Its single button press can also display secondary information, unlike others.
Without a doubt, the Cressi Leonardo Scuba Dive Computer Wrist Watch is the best diving computer watch, which contains all the primary functions that every diver requires. It can track about 60 dives with larger prints, surely a convenient way to read underwater. This is the best diving computer that is highly recommended for diving enthusiasts, whether a beginner or a pro.
#4 Oceanic Geo 2.0 Air/Nitrox Computer Watch
Another thing to watch out for is the Oceanic Geo 2.0 air/nitrox dive computer with an average rating of 4.5-Stars on Amazon. It has an improved look of a stainless steel accent ring, plus a new color combination that is surely a head-turner. This is among the best dive computer watches, offering a dual algorithm and a Deep Stop option. Its Step Back user interface has been redesigned to allow forward navigation and backward navigation with its menus and settings.
The Geo features four operating modes with a countdown timer, a built-in log book, and a firmware auto-update, allowing you to download and install only the latest firmware. Based on dive computer watch reviews, this one has fine capabilities and a suitable accuracy, while accessorizing the lens with the dome-shaped protector can prevent scratches.
The Oceanic Geo 2.0 allows the storage of two different tanks that can be utilized for customizable Nitrox mixtures or air. This is the coolest dive watches that can automatically go into the dive mode, once the diver starts to descend. You can choose from two conservative factors or otherwise. You can also program the device to remind you about making a deep stop for a certain period.
The Geo features a standard safety stop timer of 5 m/15 ft, which is changeable from 3 minutes to 5 minutes, depending on your preference. Its two sound alarms are able to notify the diver, while ascending very rapidly, while the ascent rate can be visualized in the graph. This is the best scuba gear for many divers due to its Tissue Loading Bar Graph (TLBG) that records the distance, before you are required to decompress. Indeed, this computer is highly capable of storing dives with dive time, maximum depth, time and date of dive, the water temperature, maximum ascend, and more.
#5 Shearwater Research Stand Alone Dive Computer
While choosing which dive computer to buy, why not consider the Shearwater Research Stand Alone Dive Computer? With an average rating of 5-Stars, this gear is Air, Nitrox, and Trimix capable. It also boasts a 5 open-circuit gas switch presets, while offering Bluetooth wireless upload and download. It can be operated to at least 260 meters or 853 feet with a 3-axis tilt-compensated digital compass.
This is the best digital dive watch, an all-new item from Shearwater Research with a small, yet sleek design, although never compromising the size of its 2.4-inch full color and high-definition display. Shearwater has created a lot of enhancements with this gear, especially when it comes to its processing power and its display. This time, the Shearwater Petrel Dive Computer allows the user to select any AA battery, including the rechargeable varieties.
This is the best scuba dive computer for many owners as it is compatible with a wide array of battery types, ranging from the standard SAFT Lithium LS14500 to Duracell, the standard alkaline AA, and more. With this in mind, the battery life largely depends on the type of battery used. Moreover, many divers love this gear, although not a cheap dive watch compared to its rivals.
The supplied buckles and straps are easy to snap with so much design improvements, including the integrated bungee holes. It is an essential device for recreational dives between 100 feet and 300 feet without the serious need for multiple gases. Hence, the Petrel works very well into tech diving, especially for decompression and deeper depths, easily performing what’s meant to do. After all, Shearwater protects a great reputation when it comes to their products and customer support. Therefore, there is no doubt that this is one of the latest dive computers that all divers should have.
Dive Computer Buying Guide 2018
Besides reading about a dive computer review from a reliable source, learning about the features and options, surrounding this device is similarly essential. There are several factors to understand when it comes to dive computers, especially now that the market is offering a wide selection of this item.
Basically, a dive computer only records the time and depth. So, a Nitrox/air integrated dive computer should be the best choice as you don’t have to use another device for the pressure gauge, as well as for the compass. If you can do well without the pressure gauge, then choosing an air-integrated gear will do. This type of dive computer will let you run an air hose from the tank to the computer, though.
Take note that air-integrated computers have the ability to display information like air time remaining, PSI reading of the tank, and the bottom time remaining. On the other hand, non-air integrated computers would be lesser inexpensive choices. It could still be a good option for those who already have a pressure gauge. Air-integrated computers might experience a glitch, while at depth, although a rare occurrence, losing some valuable data such as the amount of air left.
Based on air integrated dive computer reviews, it is still necessary to choose between air and Nitrox mix if you are opting for an air-integrated computer. Using Nitrox during a dive requires a computer that will let you program the oxygen percentage in your mix. The Nitrox-compatible computers with air-diving are standardized, setting 21% of oxygen. However, the standard air-dive gears are unable to accommodate Nitrox. So, deciding on using Nitrox or not is primarily crucial, before knowing what is the best dive computer for you.
An essential element during a scuba diving is the compass, allowing the diver to determine where he’s heading or getting back to the boat or shore. The best scuba diving gear of today will replace the old-fashioned compass, providing digital displays. A reliable dive computer should likewise supply this feature so as to maximize its efficiency.
The depth gauge simply records the depth, but a reliable dive computer must do this task more accurately, even at various depths. While reading about wrist dive computer reviews, it is essential to take note of this feature. The gear must be capable of carefully determining the time spent at every depth, while still allowing the user to enjoy the scenery at the same time.
The memory of a dive computer should also be taken into account. The log function will help you save and review the dives you have completed. However, the number of saved dives may vary by computer. So, before buying a dive computer, make sure that it can record enough dives as per your requirement. The best dive watches of today can retain at least 10 dives, compared to old dive computers that can only show the most recent activity.
Dive computer comparison is also crucial in order to determine if the device is compatible with your personal computer. The majority of these diving gears have the capability to download the dive details to a PC, allowing you to create and save a permanent record. In this regard, software with interface is required, converting the dive details into graphs, while showing the different depths you have achieved throughout a dive as well as the time spent at each depth.
The best diving gear can also display the ascent rate violations or the rapid ascents and missed decompression stops. The more sophisticated computers can likewise display air consumption and the predicted nitrogen load in the tissues.
The top divers watches should certainly do the Mathematics. The potentially life-saving calculation is not an exemption to this. Among the basic and most important functions of a dive computer is to calculate decompression. Thus, decompression stops greatly rely on the depth and the dive’s duration. Other dive computers can perform a revised decompression stop calculation once the diver accidentally misses a decompression stop or an ascend prior to a decompression stop was to end.
Another calculation that reliable dive watch computers can do are the no-fly times that are essential for every diver who relies on air travel towards the end of their scuba diving activities. Keep in mind that the body slowly releases nitrogen after a dive, and by ascending in a plane, the remaining nitrogen in the body can expand because of the lower pressure on the body as the airplane ascends. Thereby, the no-fly calculation of a dive computer will basically inform the diver when the safest time to fly is.
The mounting style of a scuba diving watch computer is either wrist-mounted or boot-mounted. While there is no right or wrong on the mounting style, ensuring the utmost convenience is the deciding factor, hence, it all boils down to the personal taste of the diver. Remember, though, that the above mentioned scuba dive computer reviews are wrist-mounted, thereby called as the best diver watches.
Wrist Dive Computer Versus Console Dive Computer
Wrist Dive Computer – There are several advantages of the dive computer watch over the console dive computer. Hence, the wrist dive computers are more preferred by thousands of diving enthusiasts worldwide.
- More popular than the console dive computer
- Looks like large watches, making them very handy and travel-friendly
- Provides critical information at a glance
- May be used as an everyday device, not just limited to diving
- Can be mounted in a console
- Easier to read while underwater
- Some models come in rectangular shapes, offering larger display screens
Console Dive Computer – The console dive computers are the cheap dive computers, compared to the wrist dive computer variety. Here are the details to learn about the console dive computer.
- Attached to the equipment through a hose
- Typically comes with a pressure gauge
- Readouts are normally larger than the wrist dive computer offers
The back lighting is another feature to watch out for in the most popular dive watches. The back lighting is a feature that allows the diver to see the computer’s display without the need for a flashlight. Many divers cannot do without this option in their devices, achieving the utmost convenience from such diving gears.
In a nutshell, learning about the best rated computers is very crucial throughout the search for this device, allowing you to compare the dive computer ratings without the guessing work. Keep in mind the essential features and options that such diving gear offers, including its accuracy of recording the bottom time and the minutes left at a certain depth. It should also allow you to achieve the optimum amount of time from your dive.
Learning how to use a dive watch is the very step, before appreciating the value of every dive computer. Overall, this diving gear must be capable of ending up the probability of decompression sickness, which is the main problem of many divers. Thus, the accuracy of information that a dive computer provides must be highly reliable, especially during medical emergencies.
And with the unlimited options on the market, it is always a good idea to do your homework – careful research and comparison between the top 10 dive computers from reliable manufacturers, without disregarding your diving scenarios. Instead of considering the cool look of this diving gear, it is more sensible to pay attention to the helpful features and options.
Remember that the best dive watch for the money ranges from the basic to the inexpensive, up to the most sophisticated diving gear. But, knowing what you really need out of this diving gear, based on your experience level and available budget, while relying on a trusted brand is equally helpful to arrive at the best dive computer, in spite the limitless options on the market.