Oceanic OCSOceanic OCS
Console-style computers: for divers who desire a large interface with air integration for the most economical investment
1. SUBGEAR XP-H
Performance: Divers who like to streamline their profile with the most compact gear possible will appreciate this full-featured air-integrated DC that measures just over two inches in diameter and weighs only 5 ounces. Our test divers found the data screen to be less intuitive than others. Data digits are all the same size, and their labels are tiny, so it can be a bit hard to decipher. There is a three-color bar graph for tracking tissue loading, but it’s very narrow and can be difficult to see at depth. The dual control buttons are not marked, and require a series of short and long pushes to navigate through the system. Testers rated it the most frustrating computer to program in this year’s go-round, but they loved the tiny size and minimalist design.
Liberal or Conservative: The XP-H’s algorithm runs middle of the road. It offers five additional settings for increasing conservatism.
Bottom Line: The XP-H provides all the info you want, it’s just difficult to see it, to find it and to program it. However, once dialed in, this DC offers a lot of computing power plus air integration in an ultracompact package — and at a reasonable price.
OPERATIONAL MODES- Air, Nitrox, Gauge | NITROX CAPABILITY- 21 percent to 100 percent | O2 GAS MIXES- 1 | USER CONTROLS- 2 buttons
AIR INTEGRATED- Yes | ONBOARD COMPASS- No | COLOR HIGHLIGHTS- Yes | PC KIT- Optional (from $65)
MSRP $475 INFO subgear.com
2. Aeris A300AI
Performance: The third version of this popular console comes with expanded memory, full-time access to No Deco Limits regardless of the Air Time Remaining, a new approach to Dive Time Remaining, and an eye-pleasing new white casing. The Wisdom 3 has a huge, easy-to-read display that presents data on four levels. Each section is labeled, and at the top of each screen is a prompt alerting to the mode, so it’s virtually impossible to get lost. The two-button navigation system is intuitive, and test divers were impressed by the expansive screen with big data digits. Another plus, standout bar graphs track N2 and O2 tissue loading as well as ascent rate. Testers felt the optional quick-disconnect that separates DC from regulator was a must-have item.
Liberal or Conservative: The Wisdom 3 is the most liberal dive computer in this test group. Although there is no way to program in a conservative setting, a safety cushion can be factored in by simply backing off on pixels on the NDL loading bar.
Bottom Line: The Wisdom continues to be a major player in the traditional big-screen console category. Test divers found it holds its own quite handily against most late-model DCs on the market today.
OPERATIONAL MODES- Air, Nitrox, Gauge | NITROX CAPABILITY- 21 percent to 50 percent | O2 GAS MIXES- 1 | USER CONTROLS- 2 buttons
AIR INTEGRATED- Yes | ONBOARD COMPASS- No (Analog) | COLOR HIGHLIGHTS- Yes | PC KIT- Optional ($105)
MSRP $911 to 940 INFO sherwoodscuba.com