Why Dive a Computer? – Convenience

Rounding out this series on dive computers with another shot by Mika Hiltunen. © Mika Hiltunen 2010.

I’m a gear-o-phile. Okay now that we got that out of the way…

Dive computers are a great addition to your dive system. When a diver on a limited budget asks me what they should purchase first, a dive computer is always high on the list (usually right below regulators – but every situation warrants some thought). I don’t sell diving computers, I don’t get commission when one a diver buys one but I’m passionate about getting divers into computers.

And here’s why…

Dive computers provide a suite of functions that we’ve covered making them a very convenient way to plan, monitor and log your dives…

Dive computers don’t change the fundamental elements of diving but provide a list of features that help us get more out of our sport.

Increased Dive Time

The no-decompression limits don’t change when we use dive computers but the near real-time data and calculations allow us to maximize our dive time while staying within the limits for recreational SCUBA diving.

Dive Planning

Planning a SCUBA dive should never be trivialized. It is a critical part of our dive training and in responsible diving. The role of the dive computer simplifies this process by incorporating dive planning tools that use the actual data from our current diving day.

Gas Mixtures

With EANx (Enriched Air Nitrox) becoming more popular with recreational SCUBA divers, the capability of most dive computers to calculate bottom time and maximum operating depth for EANx mixtures makes diving these gases easier and more convenient than running tables.

Dive Logging

Until I began as a dive professional, dive logging was not something I did with extreme regularity. The value of experience, continuing education and referencing past dives has made logging my dives a regular part of the dive process. Being able to use my computer to download all my dives gives me easy access to dive details such as dive time, bottom time, surface interval, starting pressure (air integrated only) and temperature to name a few. The fact that these are stored with dates/times means that; in a pinch, I can accurately log dives when I get home from a weekend of diving. However, I recommend that you log your dives as soon as possible after you exit the water.

Conclusion

While there are safety considerations when using any dive equipment and very specific and critical areas of safety around the use of dive computers; after all the considerations it is easy to see why they are quickly becoming standard gear for recreational SCUBA divers. The convenience of having planning, diving and logging tools all on the same piece of equipment makes these instruments a valuable addition to your gear bag.

The surface interval’s over… get out there and dive!

SKuba Steve

© 2013 Stephen Krausse. All rights reserved.