HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR DIVE COMPUTER?

VIDEO TUTORIAL

TWO TYPES OF COMPUTERS

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THE DIVE WATCH

Compact and can be used on a daily basis.

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THE DIVE COMPUTER

More visible and easier to use when diving.

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                       THE DIVE WATCH 

Small, portable and can be worn every day as they're rather stylish; they've been perfected to the point that they're worthy competition for the classical dive computer. They display current depth, dive time and water temperature. Because they don't give more complete information, as opposed to a computer, they're more appropriate for beginners or infrequent divers. Long-sighted divers or glove-wearers beware! The info is often very small on watch computers and using the buttons calls for a little dexterity.
Beware: spearfishing and freediving watches are not usable for scuba diving!

 

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                      THE DIVE COMPUTER

A dive computer is easier to read and very easy to use when diving. In terms of functional features, it's much more complete and gives more information. However, not all dive computers display all parameters (temperature, dive time, etc.). Several diving modes are available: air, nitrox, bottom timer, freediving, etc. Choose your computer properly according to your intended use (air, nitrox, trimix, etc.). There are also computers that have a "NO FLIGHT" mode that tells you how long to wait before being able to get on a plane according to the time of your last dive. Some computers also provide an interface for transfering your dive data to your PC.

 

 

CHOOSING A SCUBA DIVING COMPUTER, BOTTOM TIMER OR A FREEDIVING COMPUTER?

Why not all 3 at once?

Most computers on the market include at least 2 modes - diving (air and Nitrox) and bottom timer - sometimes completed by freediving/spearfishing, dive log and simulator modes.
- Bottom timer mode displays your depths and diving time. It's used with decompression tables to calculate stops.
- Air or Nitrox mode also gives the information needed for your ascent and any stops, and can be used for a 2nd dive while takig the previous parameters into account.
- Freediving mode, offered on more complex dive computers or specific watches, tells you (and records) your freediving durations, your maximum and average depths, your recovery times, etc.

When choosing, assess your needs properly, your level and consider the sport you do now and might take up in the future. Without forgetting your budget of course!

DIVE COMPUTER COMPARISON TABLE

List your needs to make the right choice!

By going up the range a little, your computer will include more features. Here are a few examples:
- easy to read dive screen: colour, backlit and adjustable.
- possibility of ramping up the decompression and making deeper stops.
- wireless air management to monitor consumption and the quantity of air in your tank before you return to the surface.
- a compass with recordable headings: a precious tool in case of poor visibility!
- possibility of diving with several gas mixtures (up to 8!) : Air, Nitrox up to 100% oxygen and even sometimes Trimix.
- activation of configurable sound and/or visual alarms: dive time/max depth, excessively fast ascent, insufficient air quality, wrong or missed stop...
- use of a large capacity log book + PC transfer cable + dedicated software.
- use of several decompression algorithms, a log mode with analysis, simulation mode, etc.

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MAINTAINING YOUR SCUBA DIVING COMPUTER

Take care of your equipment!

Would you like a few tips on maintaining your dive computer, helping it last longer? Discover our recommendations for maintaining your accessory! The following dive computers are sold in Decathlon stores.

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ARTICLE CO-WRITTEN WITH

alexandre vendeur decathlon toulon
Alexandre, salesperson at Decathlon in Toulon

I'm 33 years old... I've been a salesperson at Decathlon in Toulon and a dive instructor for 4 years. Before joining Decathlon, I was in the Navy where I took part in many operational dives. At this time, I got my certificate as a ship's diver, which is now equivalent to FFESSM level 3.

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