• Made in: USA
• Weight: 2.6 pounds
• First Stage: Balanced diaphragm
• Ports: 2HP, 4LP
• Second Stage: Pneumatially balanced, with swivel
• User Adjustments: Dive/predive lever, breathing-resistance knob
• Warranty: Limited lifetime
• MSRP: $370
• Info: www.edge-gear.com
The epic 2012, with its cool-looking gun-metal tinted, environmentally sealed first stage, was the surprise performer in this year’s $500 & under category. While it turned in impressive work of breathing scores on the AnSTI simulator, where it really showed its stuff was in the ocean tests. An easy breather in all positions, this reg delivered dry air effortlessly. The purge cover is extremely soft yet forceful, which allowed for easy clearing. The inhalation-control knob was easy to grip and did a good job of regulating airflow. Test divers also found the dive/predive lever was effective, albeit a bit stiff, and the 360-degree ball swivel on the sec- ond stage was considered a nice extra touch. The dual-compound mouthpiece is similar to what you’d find on some high-end regs; most of the test divers really appreciated it.
With its combination of user-friendly features, great performance and value-minded price, the epic 2012 came in as this year’s Best Buy in the $500 & under category.