FEATURES Fully redesigned for 2012, the Aquaride Elite’s standout new feature is the Lock Aid integrated-weight system. It also offers thick padding in the shoulder, back and lumbar areas; a rigid back plate with carry handle; a new low-profile power inflator; and two cargo pockets with expandable baffles.
PERFORMANCE The Aquaride Elite was the only BC in this test group to earn solid Very Good scores in all performance categories. The Lock Aid rivals the best integrated-weight systems in the business. The BC fit all our testers like a glove, thanks to a good size range and efficient adjustments (especially in the shoulders). And it proved to be super stable at depth. Test divers had one gripe: The six stainless-steel D-rings, while numerous and well placed, were too small, limiting usefulness.
BOTTOM LINE This year’s undisputed favorite among test divers, the Aquaride Elite is well built with virtually no inherent buoyancy. In the final countdown for Testers’ Choice, it earned almost twice as many Fave points as its closest competitor.