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Hands-on: Garmin’s New Descent MK1 Diving Watch

Garmin-Descent-MK1-DiveOptions

Sometimes, I do sports that are actually not swim-bike-run.  Be it skiing, or…ok, I guess that’s it.  Actually, I scuba dive, which I suppose is still technically swimming.  Or swimming done rather poorly. So poorly that you’re never-endingly sinking to the bottom of the oceans.

In any case, like any other person, I do a wide assortment of things that I find interesting.  One of those things that’s long been on my list is going diving at Nemo 33.  It’s an indoor dive facility that’s 33 meters (108ft) deep in Brussels (Belgium).  It’s basically like someone filled up a cold-war era missile silo with water.  I had actually long planned to do waterproofing tests there for various watches, but ultimately I just bought a waterproofing test chamber instead.  It could go deeper than Nemo 33 could, and without the 3-hour drive each way.

And yesterday, I finally had an excuse to go there!  See, Garmin decided to take their Fenix 5X GPS watch and turn it into a dive watch, albeit, with some hardware and software tweaks that I’ll get into.

But, in case you don’t have the time for all this text, I give you this relatively short video – which is mostly just an excuse for me to buy the GoPro dive case for my Hero6 Black, and then a further excuse to shoot video in a cool place.  Also, I talk about a pretty interesting piece of sports gadgetry:

And obviously – if dive watches (or underwater videos) aren’t your thing, fear not, we’ve got more running watches coming in tomorrow (which I haven’t even discussed anywhere).  And then more yet the next day; partly why I was so quiet last week. So hang tight!

The Tech Details:

Garmin-Descent-MK1-Main

The first thing to know about the Descent MK1 is that’s it’s a Fenix 5X.  Except, it’s not.  See, it’s complicated.

Yes, the underlying software starts off as a Fenix 5X, as does the hardware, but there’s some core differences.  However, since I realize that many visiting this page don’t know anything about the Fenix series at all, let’s take a brief step back and talk about the core ‘things’ the outdoor-focused Fenix 5 does (since virtually all of these are unheard of in a dive watch):

– GPS with GLONASS enabled for other sports (cycling, running, gym, etc…)
– Smartwatch with smartphone notifications (I.e. Twitter, Facebook, etc…), calendar notices, phone and text notifications
– Connects to ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart accessories, can control Garmin action cams
– Downloads data automatically to your phone via Bluetooth Smart, as well as via WiFi & USB
– Optical heart rate (HR) sensor on back of unit
– Full color maps for navigation, with points of interest (depends on region though)
– App store: Connect IQ apps for watch faces, data fields and widgets
– Battery life of: 40 hours diving, 20 hours GPS, and 10 days in smartwatch

Ultimately though, if you want to understand the full breadth of the Fenix 5 series, check out my in-depth review here.

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Now that the basics are out of the way, how’s it different than the Fenix 5X?  Let’s start with the hardware side:

– Depth Gauge added: To measure depth, obviously.
– Waterproofing standard differs: It’s waterproof to 100m, but in this case they’re specifically following EN 13319
– Added DLC bezel coating: The Fenix 5X doesn’t have this, and it hardens against scratches. On higher end model Titanium model.
– Charging port changed: In order to get the dive-focused 100m rating, they switched back to the Fenix 3 charging port
– Additional super-long strap included: It’ll fit around dry suits, or perhaps a very bulky wetsuit

The biggest change up above aside from the depth gauge is the adherence to EN13319.  That’s more than just bringing it to 100m, but actually doing overpressure testing at the 100m depth, as well as things like protection against banging the screen and body against rocks and hard surfaces while at that depth.  The obvious goal being that if you are cave diving it should be able to withstand a few whacks to the head.

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Then there’s some software focused changes:

– Dive modes added: To record dives, obviously. More on this in a second.
– No Fly Watch Face: To tell you when it’s safe to fly
– HR Recording Works Underwater: Yup, they found that given diving is less about strokes, it records quite well
– No Connect IQ Apps allowed in Dive Mode: Simply for safety reasons.  Apps allowed in all other modes.
– Different software development QC process for the dive aspects of the unit

Of course, that first line item is a pretty big one (dive modes), so let’s break down what that actually means.  Within the Descent MK1 you’ve got six core diving modes/features, they are:

– Single Gas
– Multi-Gas
– Gauge
– Apnea
– Apnea Hunt
– Plan Dive

Most of these are fairly self-explanatory.  With ‘Gauge’ mode, that’s your standard no-gas dive.  And Apnea being the more official term for freediving, with Apnea hunt aimed at spear fishing.  Each of these modes has different settings, but I’ll walk through a typical ‘gauge’ dive in my test dive down below.  From a gas perspective, the unit supports five different gases plus air, including nitrox and trimix.

Before that though, you’ve got the ability to ‘Plan Dive’ dive, which is effectively a quick dive calculator.  It doesn’t appear to tie into any of the underlying dive modes themselves, but rather is used as a quick planner instead.

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In ‘Plan Dive’, you’ve got the ability to Compute NDL or create a Decompression Plan.  For example, in Compute NDL you’d start by setting your oxygen percentage (21% default), and then you’d enter in your dive max depth or dive duration:

vlcsnap-2017-10-31-12h03m20s558 vlcsnap-2017-10-31-12h03m36s677

If I enter in my dive depth, it’ll give me my NDL back in time (which is the duration I can spend at that depth), as well as the MOD.

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Note that you can add repeat dives here as well.  Meanwhile, with the ‘Deco Plans’ option, you can get far more complex and create plans based on different gases and customizing the percentage of those gases.  Also, for non-gauge dives you can specify conservatism settings as well as specify gradient factors.  And for the algorithm on decompression plans, they’re using Bühlmann ZHL-16c.

Now – one thing to note is that while there are systems for wireless air gauge integration, there’s nothing of the sort today in the MK1.  In talking with Garmin about this, they say it’s definitely something they’re looking at down the road, but won’t likely be a MK1 product feature.  Part of that is essentially deciding which horse (standard/company) to bet on.  Some of the offerings are still pretty new, and figuring out what makes the most sense isn’t something in the cards for this product cycle.

Got all that?  Good, time for a simple test dive.

Real-World Test Dive:

DCIM\174GOPRO\GOPR6219.JPG

Since I don’t exactly live in a diving mecca (central Paris), my best bet for a fun test dive that was easily doable in a day trip was driving three hours to Brussels, Belgium.  It’s here that the NEMO33 facility is located.  At 25EUR for the dive, it’s not too bad (apparently it’s a boatload cheaper if you get a pass).  Plus, it includes 100% of the equipment you’d need, save a swimsuit (nude diving didn’t appear to be welcomed).  So after handing over my credit card we headed to the pool deck:

DSC_4409

It’s here that we got a super quick safety chat.  More of a logistics chat than safety really.  You’re expected to be certified, which I am, so it’s just a case of knowing where to get all your parts and you’re on you’re way.  First up though on their well-structured plan is 10 minutes to do any free-diving you’d like.  So I started there playing around with the watch (beyond what I had done in my underwater test chamber):

DSC_0062

Essentially in this mode it’ll track your depth and time, as well as still provide any alerts you’d have configured.  These could be for areas such as time or depth.

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Soon though, we were gearing up and getting back in the water for the main dive.  It’s at this point that I selected ‘Gauge’ from the dive menu.  The first thing it’ll do now is to actually look for GPS satellites.  See, it’ll mark your starting point on the map with that.  Of course, GPS doesn’t work underwater, so it’s merely going to be start and stop points.

In the case of indoors, I brought it as close to the window as I could, though I wasn’t as lucky as I was for the free-dive I did, so I had no luck getting GPS signal.  Obviously, on a boat on openwater that’s not an issue.  Oh, in case you’re wondering about those bikes…they do water spin classes.  Also, you could do swim laps here, but it’d be miserably hot for any sort of legit workout, since the water temp is 32°C (90°F).

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It’s at this juncture you can change your water-type as well as configure alerts.  In standard gauge mode those would just be depth and time alerts.

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And, you can select to use wrist HR (optical HR) or a chest strap.  With a chest strap you won’t get real-time readings until you download afterwards (since neither ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart can pass through water).  Whereas with the wrist sensor you will get optical HR readings live the entire dive.  Of course, the optical HR sensor won’t work through a wetsuit or dry suit.

Note for those that are curious, the reason this (underwater HR) works here and not on the Fenix 5/FR935 is that Garmin found the HR is working fairly reliably in scuba/apnea because you’re not stroking against the surface of the water as with swimming.  It’s the whacking of the water (and the water/air bubbles going in and out every .75 seconds) that causes optical HR issues.  Those issues don’t generally exist in diving.

With all that setup and GPS found, you’ll press the upper right button to start.  And then…nothing will happen.

vlcsnap-2017-10-31-12h06m48s066

See, nothing will happen until the depth gauge activates, which won’t occur until you’re about 1ft underwater. At that point the activity automatically starts recording and the GPS is disabled.  In fact, much of the watch now goes into a very locked down software mode that doesn’t allow anything extra to run.  No widgets, nor settings access, nor apps or data fields, or anything.  The idea being to lock it down so it’s both more secure, but also so you don’t get yourself into a pickle pressing buttons.

As you start to descend, you’ll get live data from one of the three data pages.  Those data pages on a standard gauge dive include:

Page 1: Dive Time, Depth, Water Temp, Ascent/Descent Rate, Max Depth, Average Depth
Page 2: Compass Heading, Compass direction (I.e. south), Depth, Water Temp, Dive Time
Page 3: Heart Rate, Heart Rate Zone (Color), Time of Day, Water Temp, Depth, Battery Level, Dive Time

Now, if you’re diving with gas you’ll get other information as well including the gas mix, PO2, and N2 loading.  In my case this was a non-gas dive, so I didn’t get to toy with those.

Alerts will trigger mid-dive for things you’ve configured.  For example, a max depth, or a time duration.  Additionally, if you ascend or descend too fast, it’ll trigger alerts there too (vibration + tone).  Note that alerts automatically clear from the screen, it was either 3 seconds or 5 seconds – I didn’t mentally time it.  But it was quick enough that the first time it occurred it disappeared faster than I could move my camera to take a photo.

image

Of note is that unlike other Garmin watches, once you’re in a dive – the watch is totally locked down.  As I mentioned above things like Connect IQ apps aren’t available. But neither is settings or anything else.  The idea being that you don’t accidentally get yourself on some weird screen you can’t figure out how to undo while underwater.  Also, at present the dive screens don’t appear to be customizable either.  They are what they are.

In unrelated news, you can eat Thai food while watching divers  That’s what those windows are there, and behind it is an Asian restaurant.  Inversely, you’ll know what it’s like to be a fish inside an aquarium.

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Finally, after you surface the unit will reacquire GPS and then mark the exit location.  These will show on the maps on Garmin Connect/Garmin Connect Mobile.  All that syncs automatically as soon as within range of your phone.  Here’s some of what you get online (some data fields aren’t quite showing up fully on the beta app):2017-10-30 22.20.30 2017-10-30 22.27.01 2017-10-30 22.26.37

You’ll also get HR charts as well as depth and temperature charts.

From a dive log perspective, everything is basically in three places: Watch, your phone, and Garmin Connect (web) automatically.  The only downside is that there doesn’t appear to be an easy way to import all your existing dive history (or to recreate dives quickly).  Of course, most other dive watches don’t support that either, but still, it’s always a sad-panda moment when any dive/training log shows zero.

Oh – and lastly, on the watch face it’ll show your time remaining till it’s safe to fly (essentially 24 hours since last dive).

Wrap-up:

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Now, for those wondering if I’m getting into the dive watch computer realm with in-depth reviews, the answer is simple: Nope, unlikely.  First off, I just don’t live in a place that’s terribly conducive to doing that topic justice.  It’d be like writing reviews of running GPS watches and only using a treadmill.  So until I move to/buy/whatever a tropical island to dive from every day, you’re stuck with me out of breath running the streets of Paris.

But ultimately, I like discussing things that are interesting, even if not the core of what I do day to day.  It keeps it interesting to me.  And in the of the Garmin Descent MK1, it’s notable because there’s so little competition to this type of device in the marketplace.  Obviously, there are tons of dive computers.  Both high end and low-end.

The funny thing is though, there are really none that have the feature-set that Garmin arrives with beyond the diving pieces.  In the diving world, most dive watches are large and clunky (albeit sometimes for valid reasons), and those that are slimmer tend to be pricey, and even then super minimalist when it comes to being able to be worn on land.  All of which Garmin knows.  They can arrive with a unit that’s far more connected than any other offering in the market, and at a price that’s actually quite comparable ($999USD for base model) to other high-end dive computers.

Said differently: Garmin isn’t doing anything significantly unique compared to other dive computers in terms of the diving-specific feature set.  What they are doing though is doing that though coupled with a complete GPS smartwatch.  That’s unique.

Of course, the question is whether the diving market trusts Garmin.  Certainly in the sports realm, the overwhelming bulk of runners and cyclists do (as the numbers clearly show), but we also have become accustomed to Garmin’s occasional software snafu’s.  If your GPS watch stumbles on a run, it’s one thing.  But if it has an error in a highly technical dive – that’s an entirely different situation.

Obviously, as I noted above, Garmin says they’ve done a lot in this area to address the safety concerns.  Which are ultimately no different than the ways Garmin addresses them in other safety-critical businesses like aviation and marine.  And in the case of those markets, it’s really a case of consumers over time trusting the products they’re using.  They noted that while the Descent will largely get the same software/firmware updates the Fenix 5X gets, that due to the extra safety checks, there will probably be a slight lag there to the Descent.

Which ultimately brings us back to the Descent MK1.  Garmin will have to prove over time that the unit they’ve made is dependable, no matter how much bottom time beta testing divers have had.  And if they do that?  They’ll likely take the dive computer market by storm.  Especially since it’s almost inevitable they’ll apply the same logic they did in the running and cycling realm: Start with prices comparatively high, and iterate down to offering compelling budget options that blanket the market.

In the meantime, I need to find a tropical island.

With that – thanks for reading!

Update: You can now pre-order the Garmin Descent MK1 via Clever Training.  Doing so via Clever Training helps support the site.  Plus, if you use the DCR/CT VIP program you’ll get 10% back in points that you can use immediately, along with free US shipping.  Further, it’ll basically make you awesome.

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163 Comments

  1. Simon P

    Makes the 5x look cheap!

    The Descent Mk1 is expected to be available in Q4 2017 for a suggested retail price of $999.99 for the stainless-steel and $1,499.99 for the premium version.

    • True, it’s more expensive than the 5X. Though, if you want a fun journey, go check out the USD costs of Suunto’s watch sized dive computers (sans GPS/etc…). Yikes!

      That said, I think Suunto would be extremely well positioned here to essentially do what Garmin’s doing, and they’ve got a far longer backstop of diving brand recognition to go on.

      Interesting times!

    • gps4ever

      yup, this is The Suunto-killer watch… I just can’t wait to put my hands on it and leave my suunto watches behind.

    • Jay

      more of a FYI / what I’ve found interesting researching dive computers, algorithms (this lecture nicely explains things re algo direction: link to youtube.com)

      DSAT ~=PADI dive tables ~~~= ZHL-16C with a GFhi of ~95%. Here’s a neat table:

    • Jay

      from Simply Scuba and Oceanic (guess it from the latter first – and unsure of its date)

    • Jay

      This file was dated 2009:

      short story IMO – Garim have chosen the correct algo!

      ScubaLab have a link to their raw NDL data for each of the computer tested (for each year too). Compiling and ranking it produces close results to the info above.

      Hope this helps.

  2. The Real Bob

    Thanks Ray,
    I have no interest in diving but I appreciate the diversity in your tech reviews. Fascinating read.
    Thanks for posting
    Bob

  3. Pete

    Really interesting with so much potential.
    But you’ve hit the nail right on the head in that, would consumers trust Garmin. For me, not now.

    I’ll be interested to see how Suunto respond given they are very much proven in the dive market.

  4. mjc_iv

    Hopefully dive alarms/alerts aren’t “synced” by Garmin Connect.

  5. Andrew M

    What might have been more interesting is if the had linked the 5X’s gyroscopes to give you some underwater navigation capabilities

    • Nick K

      According to Garmin web site, the watch does include 3-axis compass for underwater navigation.

    • You do have the compass underwater though, so that’s there. Plus of course the ascent meter on the right side will show you if you’re going up or down. From a gyro standpoint, I’m not sure how it would provide additional detail beyond what compass + depth would do. Thoughts?

    • if it was highly acurate it could do basic 3d mapping but its not that good and the wrist is a bad location. link to en.wikipedia.org

    • Volker

      Is the shown depth as “accurate” as the altimeter of other garmins n wearables?

    • On accuracy, my sample size is limited…however:

      A) In my test dive chamber I did a long and varied dive test where the Descents figure matched an actual dive gauge (non-electronic).

      B) While diving at NEMO33, I validated the figures matched to the also manual dive gauge I was using.

      Only a few samples, but a good start.

    • Eric B

      I think what andrew is saying is that it might be possible to use the internal gyros, combined with the initial GPS fix and depth gauge, to provide an actual underwater track similar to the way an inertial navigation system worked in aircraft and spacecraft before the advent of GPS and currently still used in submarines. It is an interesting idea, but might be too taxing for the CPU and the small, cheap gyros might not be precise enough for that purpose. Might be a feature we see added later on though.

    • Ahh, gotchya. Now that would be pretty darn cool! Maybe not so much during the dive with today’s tech, but in a logbook fashion afterwards to be able to replay.

    • rjanuary

      I might be able to provide some greater information on the depth accuracy. I’ve been a beta tester for the product. I believe what you’re referencing is the lack of accuracy in altitude within air. I believe most products are using +/- 100 ft as their accuracy threshold. It’s very difficult to judge altitude based on the minute changes in air pressure, especially when it changes with the weather.

      Depth underwater is much easier to judge considering 1.) Due to the weight, water pressure increases much faster than air. 2.) Pressure increases quite linearly underwater (1 ATM per 33ft/10m)

      I can tell you with confidence that the depth is spot on with other dive computers I’ve tested against.

    • Volker

      Thanks for this information. Good to know!

    • Andrew M

      Eric – yeah, that’s exactly what I meant.

  6. Fabio


    – Connects to ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart accessories, can control GoPro action cams

    GoPro? Did you mean VIRB here? Would be cool to have GoPro support from Garmin watches but I can’t find any reference to that!

  7. Martin Perry

    Cool review, totally came out of nowhere love it.

    How are the dimensions of the watch, is it a like for like size as the Fenix 5X?

    Too bad they never thought to include Garmin Pay in there, was hoping that was going to be a standard thing on all their devices now.

    • Identical to 5X in the size department. I’ll weigh it tomorrow to see if any differences there (Cave is without power right now).

      As for Garmin Pay, I think the main reason being the re-use of the 5X hardware. While it probably wouldn’t have been a huge jump to stick in the required NFC components, my guess is that it would have changed enough things to push back dates.

  8. So grateful for this! I wasn’t sure if you’d be writing about the Descent so it’s great to hear you scuba dive too. I’m also a triathlete and scuba diver, so looks like this might be the watch for me!

  9. Tim K

    Just to be clear – the watch still has all the other functions of the “normal” Fenix Series? Including the maps?

    • Yup, everything else is there, including maps that vary based on region. Think of this as a Fenix 5XU (where U stands for Underwater).

    • Nick K

      What about strength training/cardio?

      I don’t see these listed for Mk1 when compared against Fenix 5X on Garmin website that gives me a big pause.

      Can these be created on the watch? Installed from ConnectIQ store?

    • I don’t see the automatic rep counting pieces there yet on the software I have on this unit, but it’s also not slated to start shipping today either.

      I’ll confirm with Garmin, but my guess is this is a good example of where the Fenix 5/5S/5X just got those about a month ago via firmware update, and that I suspect the Descent lineup is working off of the slightly delayed feature update schedule to account for locking things down a bit more.

    • Nick Karasev

      I can live without rep counting, but not having access to actual activities (for whatever reason) is gonna be unacceptable on $999 device. They include Indoor Rowing in Fitness Equipment, but not Strength or Cardio or Elliptical, which is very strange.

      Also, there are some running dynamics differences between Fenix 5(X) and Mk1, which also strikes me as odd.

      Hopefully, this is due to a watch not being released yet and not another example of Garmin’s creative feature packaging.

    • Oh, just to be clear, those activities are all there today. On my unit I can see Rowing (indoors and outdoors), as well as Strength, Cardio. Even ‘Boat’. I don’t see Elliptical though.

      And Running Dynamics should be all identical. Here’s a run with it and the RD pod from a few days ago: link to connect.garmin.com

    • Nick Karasev

      “You are my savior! My personal Jesus Christ!” The Matrix 1999

      Wew! My Christmas budget has now a $999 hole in it, my wife’s gonna kick me out of the house, but I’m a happiest man alive! The Holy Grail of all things athletic in one convenient location is upon us, brothers and sisters!

  10. Filip

    great source of info about this watch, have been waiting for something like this :)

    if I understand correctly apart from the described differences (physical + added diving features) there are no other differences to 5x, correct? Essentially Descent is an expansion of 5x features as I understand it, right?

    Thank you!
    F

    • Yup – totally correct, beyond what I listed it’s the same as a Fenix 5X. So for a triathlete or sporty person that was looking at a 5X and also dives, this is a pretty logical step up.

  11. james

    I’m really surprised they support trimix in this watch. Did Garmin document what algorithm they use? If it’s not an open algorithm (i.e. Buhlmann), with support for things like setting gradient factors, I don’t see how any technical diver could adopt it.

  12. L

    Thanks for this!! I’ve been WISHING for Garmin to make a dive watch for years, and since my 620 is on its last legs, I was about to upgrade to a 935… I think I’ll go for this one now.

    • Nick Karasev

      Exactly! I was suffering a lot of ANT+ drops on my Fenix 5 and was seriously considering up-trading to 5X, where the issue is said to be far less pronounced / non-existent. If Mk1 can do everything Fenix 5 can AND handle my diving needs (hell, I finally get proper dive logs and entry/exit points for dive sites!), this will be huge.

  13. JR

    As a runner, it didn’t occur to me that Garmin has to deliver much more reliable products for aviation, and clearly they’ve figured out how to do that. It makes one question whey they can’t have some people from that team teach the sports team about quality.

    • Like any product, it comes down to the resources you spend on testing. Same with Google, Microsoft, Apple, etc… That list of resources includes automated means as well as human means. So everything from developing comprehensive feature test plans as well as having the resources to validate those test plans.

      All of which then ties back to timelines and financial resources. So in the case of the Fenix 5/5/5X they can move faster because they don’t test as deeply as on Descent. Likewise, on the Forerunner they can move faster because they don’t test as hard as aviation gear.

      Not saying it’s right or wrong, but just the reality of the situation today.

    • Eric B

      I work in aviation certification engineering and you absolutely do NOT want us getting our hands on anything in the fitness market. Just look at how much more expensive this watch is and how much longer it took to be released than the Fenix 5X. If you had to test that device to FAA standards and document it like all of the aviation products it would probably cost at least 50% more than it does and wouldn’t be released until next year. Then, if you needed to do a software update you could expect about 6 months of documentation and testing before you would be able to install the new software update. There are always trade-offs between reliability, price, and speed of implementation. When things absolutely, positively, must work right the first time, every time, it takes a lot longer to develop and test it. Which then drives up the cost since you have to pay engineers for a lot of hours of work.

  14. L

    If there’s no easy way to import dive history — does that mean that I can’t import files from Suunto Movescount to Garmin Connect? I never could before but I assumed it was because they just didn’t support a detailed dive profile.

    • Nick Karasev

      A guy on Scubaboard, who says he’s been beta testing Mk1, claims Garmin stores all dive information in regular Fit files, with additional data fields. If that’s the case, perhaps they would let some import means like they currently allow TCX/GPS import from the outside on Garmin Connect web site.

      The other way would be to take custom/Subsurface dive logs, generate Fit files, and copy them onto Mk1 via USB? I’m wondering if that hack would force Mk1 to sync historical activities back to Garmin.

    • Correct, all dive files are .FIT – just like all other workout files.

      Right now, the Garmin Connect (non-mobile) side of things isn’t terribly special for dive files. I’ve asked for clarification on how that might change to be a bit more like a dive log book, than a workout site.

      But I suspect that if GC is updated to have a dive section, then one could do as you said and probably reasonably easy create an online parser from popular dive log book export formats and re-map fields into something a .FIT file would be happy with.

    • L

      I’ll be happy if Garmin allows me to manually create an activity that’s more detailed so I can just manually input the data from past dives! Suunto’s DM5 software has been a total nightmare for me, and I’ll be happy to let that go.

    • Mark

      The lack of an easy way to import existing dive history to Garmin Connect is a pretty significant downside. There are divers with hundreds, even thousands, of dives already recorded in their electronic dive logs. Not being able to transfer these dives over to GC’s logbook would be a real disincentive.

    • Douglas Olson

      My question is why would you? Really. As long as you can export your dives to your fav app/logbook, then the ability to upload historic dives to a watch/computer is pointless. Suunto, for example, starts clearing dives after 99 dives.

    • Mark

      Douglas, it’s not about exporting historic dive info to the watch/computer/device; it’s about exporting that historic dive info to the platform that this device uses. In this case, that’s Garmin Connect. From Ray’s pictures above, you can see that GC will incorporate a dive log feature to support the Descent MK1. But if the GC dive log can’t easily import historic info from other dive log apps, then that’s a major limitation. Particularly for any diver who already has hundreds (or thousands) of dives logged elsewhere.

  15. A dive watch without a rotating bezel is heresy. Burn it. Burn it with fire!

  16. JZ

    Little off topic I noticed you mentioning upcoming reviews on other watches. I’ve been on hold for getting a Fenix 5X because it seems the 6 series will be coming just around the corner. I’m thinking a January announcement your thoughts ? Also you do you think an new Virb Ultra will be out soon?

    • Andrew M

      The F5/S/X was released in March 17 – about 6 months ago. Don’t expect to see a 6 series for another 18 months. There may be a refresh in 2018 to fix Garmin’s #$%^ up with ANT+/BLE sensors on the F5, and perhaps add in NFC, but it will be basically the 5 series refreshed.

    • alibi

      not sure about “released”, but 5 was announced in january 2017 and 3hr in january 2016. so…

  17. John

    Huh, my last post seems to have disappeared into the depths… :-/

    I did want to add that it would be far better to be able to export dives to a third party app (I personally use MacDive, there are other options available) vs. trying to import previous dive history into Garmin Connect.

    • Weird. I don’t see any comments sitting in spam/junk/pending. Sorry, to wherever it sunk!

      As for activities, they’re stored in standard .FIT files. Now of course, 3rd parties will have to learn how to consume those since they are unlikely to use the format like the rest of the sports tech industry does. But it’s pretty trivial for 3rd party apps to add.

  18. David Tucker

    Interesting your comment at the end there about whether I’d trust a Garmin dive computer. The answer right now? NO WAY. And I love my Garmin Fenix 3 and all other devices I’ve had from them. But I’ve been diving on an Oceanic dive computer of some sort for 20 years now. And never once has it had a hiccup. To be fair, I dive with two computers generally just in case but I want my dive computer to be absolutely dedicated to the task.

    With that said, my comment to my wife was “Well, when it’s time for me to replace my Fenix 3 in a few years, they’ll probably have the kinks all worked out” Maybe. But I’ll be talking to the guys over at Scubaboard to see what they think 8) I really like how it saves the data in Garmin Connect but I have recently moved back to a paper log and probably will stick with that for diving.

    One thing I don’t see here is if the computer is capable of changing algorithms or how conservative it is by default. I’m sure there’s a lot of settings you don’t get into here but I am interested to see what this does to the market at least.

    Also, on a diving & triathlon related note…talk about two sports that are hard to do together. If I dive all day Saturday, there’s no way I can work out the next day. If I’m training for a 140.6 distance event then scuba generally goes on the back burner for a few months.

  19. Terrance

    You stated that the optical HR works underwater. Is Garmin going to update or allow the optical HR on the 935 to work while swimming?

    • Nick Karasev

      I think it only works for scuba due to lack of arm movement. For swimming, even Mk1 is said to require chest strap.

    • Terrance

      Interesting, I thought the hurdle to overcome would have been related to water between the sensor and skin. The optical HR works when running and there’s arm movement then.

    • Water in between can cause issues, but it’s not too bad actually.

      The issue is that each time your wrist hits the water, it’s a massive ‘shock’ to the watch, like whacking pavement. So the watch can easily get confused in the same way it does running with running cadence sometimes. Further, when you bring your hand out of the water, liquid drains out between the watch and then fills again, often with bubbles of air in there. It’s kinda a mess.

      That said, various watches have implemented it to varying degrees of success in swimming. I’d be surprised if we don’t see Garmin eventually get there, either through firmware/software updates, or hardware tweaks.

    • Nick Karasev

      From what I’ve read about optical heart rate sensors and have seen in strength training, the limiting factor has less to do with sweat/water and irregularity of movement and flexing of hand muscles restricting blood flow. So, it works relatively well for walking and running where hands move in predictable patterns aligned with shocks from steps. This wouldn’t work as well in the water… Not that it totally doesn’t work. I’m just no sold on accuracy.

  20. Douglas Olson

    Ray,

    Thanks for the glimpse into Garmin’s foray to Dive Computers. As an amateur, aged triathlete, I latched on to Garmin products and really like them. For Scuba, I use a Vyper Air with a wireless transmitter. As an endurance athlete, I was wondering if there is a way to capture heart rate while scuba diving… and you (and Garmin) have now answered the question.

    How was the viewablility of the Descent MK1 through the mask? What kind of backlight does it have?

    As always, love your reviews. Keep up the good work. And, if you ever want to dive in the great lakes. Let me know.

    • No issues with visibility of the screen. Though, keep in mind the water was about as clear as you’d ever get, and I also have pretty good eyesight.

      That said, it was a million times easier to see than the beat-up dive-computer the place had (which isn’t a fair comparison, but a comparison nonetheless).

      The backlight is pretty bright – same as the Fenix 5. It’s actually interesting that in the photos it appears a bit red at depth, but in reality that’s just funky camera games.

    • HYoung

      The backlight is adjustable. As a beta tester, I have found having it set at 20-30% to auto start at depth works very well and does not overly tax the battery. Both in lake and ocean.

  21. Suleiman

    Thank you Ray,

    Do you know which algorithm they use?
    Does it support external sensors?

    • Bühlmann ZHL-16c for the algorithm.

      And no external dive sensors today. It’s something they are looking at, but are trying to decide which devices/standards to support. Part of the challenge they see is basically figuring out which horse to bet on when it comes to external sensors.

  22. Paul

    Ray, Does the Garmin MK1 require some wireless sensor for the air tank gauges at all? Does it even tell you remaining air? I have an Atmos dive computer that physically hooks to my tank via hose and it tells me everything the Garmin does, including air pressures (which would make the Garmin a good sanity check while validating it for dive use).

    I guess in other words, does it need anything additional if I wanted to make this my only dive computer and handle all my essential dive data…

    • No connectivity at all (in any manner). That’d likely tech different hardware, as the current chipset is just for ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart support, and neither can go more than 2-3cm underwater. This was the singular area the Garmin Dive Product Group noted that it wasn’t likely to be within the MK1 product.

    • Jay

      Does that ‘kindof’ imply that AI might be on the cards for a MK2? :)

      I wonder if there was talk about Qi charging?

      Thanks :)

  23. Lee Sutton

    Is it Buhlmans with Gradient Factors or just straight Buhlmans?

    • You can choose three conservatism settings: High, Medium, Low. Alternatively, you can specify a custom value (i.e. 35/75). You’ll first specify the low gradient factor in the menu, and then the high factor.

  24. PK Steffen

    Very cool that it can do more than diving. Most dive watches are still so far behind in terms of connectivity, even interface, etc. And this one does those well and so much more beyond diving. Very cool.

  25. Tim

    A couple of possible typos:

    “It’s at this juncture you can change your water-type as well as configure alerts. In standard gauge mode those would just be depth and time alerts. You can also change the water type.”

    Water type mentioned twice?

    “See, nothing will happen until the depth gauge activates, which won’t occur until you’re about 1ft underwater. At that point the activity automatically stops recording and the GPS is disabled.”

    do you mean that it starts recording?

    Very interesting read, even for someone who have never been diving.

  26. Lee Sutton

    Excellent! Unfortunately I just sold all my tech gear but as a self confessed geek I still like to keep up to date :-)

    That really is a great package for the price!

  27. Michael

    Great “hands-on”!! With this unit capturing HR under water, do you expect Garmin to turn on HR on the 935 or other running/triathlon watches (which I don’t believe capture swimming HR right now)?

  28. Bob

    Do you know if there will ever be a way to get the diving ‘app’ on a regular fenix? Already having a 5, it seems the watch could handle nearly everything minus the extremes of depth, total lock down, good water proofing depth, HR can work underwater, just need the depth calculator (via barometric pressure?) and the math for NDL etc.

    I’ve seen a pretty good connect IQ app, but full functionality (more than 1 dive…) is like $30, and Garmin now proves they can do it for free.

    • I doubt they’ll do it. More out of safety concern than anything else with folks then turning around and using something for diving and it going wrong when it wasn’t really designed for diving. Just my guess.

    • okrunner

      Used to be a dive app on connect iq on Garmin site but it’s gone now and when I tried to use it m f3hr says “version expired.” The web shows an app you can download here, http://www.diveiq.com. Obviously, the safety protocols won’t be there as they are in this watch Ray has shown.

    • okrunner

      Interesting article on how Garmin has handled connect iq dive apps. Apparently, everything from Fenix 3hr forward has been capable of dive apps but Garmin took them down. Why not, when you’ve been preparing a $1,000 diving watch for two years? A free app would really hurt.
      link to appelmoessite.wordpress.com

    • rjanuary

      There are physical hardware differences between the Descent and previous wearables.

      If I were Garmin, I certainly wouldn’t want users in vulnerable situations where a hardware failure (in untested scenarios) could lead to injury.

    • The whole dive CIQ app thing has long been discussed at Garmin. There were discussions years ago about whether to allow them at all. Seems like they were allowed for a short time, and then pulled, etc…

      All of it around liability concerns from every conversation I’ve gathered (since these stretched like 3 years back).

    • Nick Karasev

      I think it has little to do with a free app and a lot to do with legal and compliance. Keeping an uncertified diving app in store would open Garmin, should something go wrong, to all sorts of litigation. Also, the app in Fenix 3HR used a barometric pressure sensor to figure out depth — I still remember the discussion the author of the app had about it on Garmin forums. A careful look at Mk1 spec shows a dedicated depth sensor, which presumably is far less failure proof and far more accurate, especially at greater depths.

    • Nick Karasev

      Talk Freudian slips… Meant the Mk1 depth sensor should be far less failure prone and more accurate at depths.

    • okrunner

      I really just thought I would throw that out there for fun. I certainly wouldn’t trust my 3hr with a diving app. But, it might make a fun backup. Years ago, Swatch made a watch model that had an anolog depth guage with dive time. Basically, a dive timer and gauge. It stated all over it that it was not safe/approved for diving but that’s exactly what it was designed for. I used it as a backup only until it crapped out. I think the challenge for Garmin here, is why, would I give up my trusty Oceanic wrist dive computer that I only paid a couple hundred dollars for. They’re simply bombproof, tested, and trusted. Plus, I kinda like that fact that it’s a big chunky thing with a screen twice as big as my 3hr or the 5. I can see the darn thing at depth in low light. Anyway, wish Garmin would at least let us have a dive timer app as a backup. What’s the harm?

  29. iacchos

    “Charging port changed: In order to get the dive-focused 100m rating, they switched back to the Fenix 3 charging port”
    I assumed that due to new charging port, the Descent cradle isn’t compatible with F5X ??

  30. Brian

    Does it stay locked out for 24 hours after the dive? I would expect it to do that to keep with the “safety” of the dive.

    • Some things do. For example, if I do a gauge dive (as I did yesterday), I can’t use any of the gas dive options for 24 hours after starting my gauge dive.

      But flying, well, there’s no way the unit can keep you from boarding a plane. ;)

      Instead, it just shows you a small airplane icon with an ‘x’ over it, and the time remaining, which is shown on the stock dive watch face.

  31. Theo

    Hi, I love the review. I noticed that the dive profile is really straight. Did you really dive this way?

    It was not clear to me, but does it count the ndl based on your preset plan or does it use actual depth and gas info? Also, as a side note, ndl is not an acronym I am used to.

    • rjanuary

      NDL (an Acronym for No-Decompression Limit) is your allowable bottom time. It is based on Nitrogen loading. Since the Descent is not Air integrated gas info is not relevant. You will need another computer and/or gauge to monitor current air levels.

    • Um, or a simple pressure gauge. Sheesh, when I learned to dive in ’76 the industry was still getting rid of J valves — that’s where you pulled a lever to get a little more out of your tank. It’d start breathing hard, and you knew it was time to boogie to the surface.

    • As for the dive profile, no, it just does the super simplified view on that page.

      On the last tab, it’ll show the true dive profile using the depth gauge, but at present on the current beta GCM builds, it’s not enumerating for me for some reason.

    • rjanuary

      I’ve also used a J valve and said gauge in my prior comment ;)

    • Not sure you answered the question as asked, which if I’m interpreting it correctly was “hey, does this thing tell you how long you have based on your dive plan, i.e., is it just running the old Navy dive tables for you, or does it take into account your actual dive?

      It’s the latter. I believe the NDL time displayed is based on a calculation of how much nitrogen you’ll have in your bloodstream when you surface. In other words, there’s a mathematical model that’s always running based on your dive profile. Assuming you head to the surface at 1ft/sec (1m per 3 seconds), the NDL time is the maximum time you can stay at your current depth and still have a controlled ascent to the surface with no deco stops. My first dive computer (an Orca Edge) was the size and weight of a gold brick, but had a really cool display that would show you the nitrogen saturation of different tissue types on an histogram. You could see the model work… I haven’t seen this since, and absolutely loved it.

      Anyway, training these models is why you tell the watch what kind of gas you’re breathing (it changes the coefficients for absorption). And this is why you can tweak the acceptable saturation levels of the model, thus building in a safety margin in case you have more scar tissue or fat or paranoia than the next person.

      FWIW with the Suunto I usually set it to a very conservative model, and then take a deco stop at 10ft/3m for a few minutes regardless. Besides building in a safety margin, I find I feel a bit better afterwards (sinuses and all that). YMMV. IANAD. (I am not a doctor!)

  32. Perhaps because you never got deep enough, but the most important thing they display while diving is the time left at the current depth before you have to take a decompression stop. This is the one number I pay attention to other than air left in the tank. Oh, and when I have to get back to the surface to not miss lunch…

    Image is from Garmin’s descent page.

    Thanks, Richard

    p.s. Nit: “Heart Rate Zeon” (in the section where you detail what’s on the dive mode display, and if I read correctly, were you omit the no-decon time field).

  33. Albert

    So, if the Descent MK1 is capable of reading HR underwater, and the Descent is a F5X, can also de F5X read the HR underwater?
    I never tried so long, but in short test, it never read my HR in a pool.

    Thanks!

    • No. It’s the swimming aspect (whacking of the water) that’s the issue for Garmin today. Whereas underwater things are pretty clean.

    • rjanuary

      YMMV, however I found that I was eventually able to adjust the watch to allow for good heart rate monitoring.

      Two things to be aware of:
      1.) Constrictive wet suits, or overly tight dry suit seals may interfere with wrist based monitoring
      2.) I found you need to be careful to get just the right band tension. Anything too tight or loose lead to incorrect readings. Once you find that sweet spot it appears accurate.

  34. Gary

    Is the watch just nitrox or can it also do trimix

  35. David

    I am a trained technical diver, have two suunto computers.
    Use Garmin for cycling, running, and day-to-day tracking.
    Would I use a Garmin dive computer? Not a chance.

  36. Stepan

    Being a triathlete and a diving instructor, having Garmin 5X for only three months, this hits me hard :D

  37. karim

    Fascinating. I have a 935 and a Suunto D6i and have always fancied a watch that would combine the best of both worlds and this new offering by Garmin is intriguing. That said, time will be the ultimate test to make sure that there are no software hiccups or quirks similar to what we all have experienced when running or cycling with our Garmin products. U absolutely have to be able to rely on non-decompression limits when you are diving. Suunto is the master of the space and also have the more conservative algorithms re NDL on their computers and watches.

    Not sure if I missed it in the review but is there a nitrox setting which allows you to change the oxygen blend?

  38. alexei

    does it has Triathlon mode?

  39. As to reliability, I really like the idea of Garmin shutting down all the frippery when in dive mode. I’m guessing it won’t take very many test dives to get tons of “final beta testing” (courtesy of the early adopters). I’m likely to be one of those, and also taking into account the extreme volume Garmin will enjoy of this watch means that it will be incredibly well tested in some insane scenarios. In other words, this is quickly likely to be the most reliable dive instrument you can buy.

    Ray: if you beach dive (remember those?) will it show you your snorkeling time/path/whatever? I’d expect most shore dives to have 10-20 minutes of snorkeling, 30+ minutes of submersion, and then another 10-20 minutes of snorkeling back to the beach. What would that look like?

    • I don’t believe it would show the snorkeling path, because the GPS shuts off as soon as you hit the water (it might actually technically shut off once you press to initiative the dive before it hits the water but after it’s acquired signal).

      And then it won’t regain GPS until you’ve exited water (depth = 0). But I don’t think if you re-dive it’ll find again. There’s a delay you can set, but I couldn’t come up with an easy way to test that at either NEMO33 (due to their structure constraints), or in the dive chamber (since it takes a bit of time to unseal it and get outside). Perhaps RJANUARY or one of the other beta testers here can comment on that in a legit openwater setting (else, starting January I’ve got months of openwater swims in warm water).

  40. Mark

    Does this mean that some oddball watches coming up? Like the quatix 5 sailing watch? It’s another Fenix 5

  41. gasteropod

    Well that’s one way to get a fenix 5X that can be worn on the wrist and charged on the fly at the same time. Albeit an expensive way.

  42. Forrest

    I’d love to see you do something with the Garmin D2 series. You do seem to have an interest in aviation as well, right? It would be a perfect excuse to rent an airplane!

  43. Michael Watkins

    Is it possible that later Garmin could make this watch compatible with the Sunnto wireless pods that transmits air pressure?

    • I run and bike, and dive (tec to 50 meters). I use a Shearwater Perdix AI for diving, which does trimix, and all that. Shearwater has great respect within the tec diving community, and since I am old enough to need bifocals and also since I dive in some low vis environments at times I love the big bright Shearwater screen. So while I love my Garmin watch, I don’t think I’d ever get their dive computer.

      But, pertaining to this post, the Shearwater Perdix AI uses Oceanic air pressure transmitters, and I’ve found my transmitter to be very reliable. Presumably Garmin could choose to support this type of transmitter, though I don’t know what radio protocol it uses.

    • Andy Banks

      I was thinking exactly the same thing.
      Though I think I’d take the opportunity to have redundancy in my dive watches; currently I use a D9 + D3 as redundancy and a 3HR for other sports.
      I like the idea or HR when diving and free diving in particular and correlating with SAC through my air Transmitter would be great.

      I use the excellent Div Log app on my Mac and iPhone as my digital log and I’ve emailed them to ask if they would consider support for the Descend MK1 and correlating two data sources.

      I’ll keep you posted.

  44. Bryan

    Seems like it might be an a good time for Garmin to incorporate tides (not sure if they did on the descent).

    • Volker

      I think you will get tides with the (paid) garmin bluechart maps on the descent and/or if garmin will make the “tides” App from the iq store compatible for the descent…

  45. Chris

    This is interesting. I’ve spoken to Suunto about a diving (freediving/spearfishing to specify) function a few month ago and they have taken it on board as a feature request. Unfortunately, I haven’t heard back from them since.

  46. Chris

    Any chance Garmin will add the apnea mode to regular Fenix5 models? I have a separate computer for scuba diving, but would love the apnea mode for free diving!

  47. Tomas Gustafsson

    Does it still have an barometric altimeter?

  48. GS

    Can you use powemeters such as Gamin Vector 3?

  49. Drew

    This was the most exciting part of the article for me: “we’ve got more running watches coming in tomorrow (which I haven’t even discussed anywhere). And then more yet the next day” Forerunner 245??

  50. Hey folks-

    For those that have been e-mailing asking, you can indeed now pre-order the Descent MK1 via Clever Training. As always, doing so via Clever Training helps support the site. Plus, if you use the DCR/CT VIP program you’ll get 10% back in points that you can use immediately, along with free US shipping. Further, it’ll basically make you awesome.

    Thanks all!

  51. Jason

    Ray,

    This is a very interesting piece, will it retain all functionality that the 5X has in addition to the dive computer functionality?

    Seems a no brainer to those who are all round active if it does.

  52. Neil Jones

    Like others, I’ll give Garmin chance to prove themselves here, but I’m not ready to trust them yet. Yes, they have experience in critical environments like aviation and maritime, but that doesn’t mean that experience is being shared with the fitness product teams who I’d guess are behind this.

    For me the great thing about this is to see how it drives the other players in the “every day wearable” dive computer segment, where the current devices are on par with digital watches from the 1980s in terms of the “in your face” side of the technology. I think this has become accepted over the years as people want something tried and trusted, not gimmicky, but I do think this has led to stagnation as the likes of Suunto have been happy to sit back. If Garmin get this right, then it’s going to drive development as a whole. We’re never going to see (nor would I want) new models every year and updates with new features every few months, and some people don’t want anything more than what’s already available, but things like GPS, colour displays, customisable screens, additional non-diving functionality etc are long overdue for some of us.

  53. okrunner

    I alluded to this above, but in addition to the concern about Garmin’s reliability in this arena, I think this kinda falls under the Fenix Chronos area. Just how many $1,000 and $1,500 watches are they going to sell? My opinion is that nothing much has happened in the dive technology world for awhile that would require an occasional recreational diver to need something more than a $300 computer. YMMV I still dive a Conshelf 14 that came out, when, in the ’70s? But, you can still buy them new. Found one new in the box on ebay two years ago for cheap! In fact, you can buy a tried and trusted Suunto Zoop for $215 right now. Diver’s Direct has at least 5 computers under $300 and Leisure Pro about 9, some with guages, etc. But, the tech on running/biking GPS watches is changing so rapidly that my Fenix 3hr that I’ve had just over a year seems antiquated. I also like the fact that my dive computer stays in my dive bag with an extra battery at all times and I don’t have to worry about it being charged (something I think has not really been commented on here to the extent it needs to be, how many of us have had to hook up our Fenix for 15 min. to charge before that long ride). Additionally, I think I will deal with it alot better on vacation when I drop my now very used $300 dive computer in the drink versus a $1,500 Garmin, never to be seen again. Just my two cents, but I agree the coolness factor of everything in one place is alluring, maybe not practical.

  54. Farhan

    Hello,

    Will it automatcially start the diving mode when ever the user dives in the pool or sea ? or it needs to be started ?

    and If anybody free dives will it automatically record that how many ft and mins you have been underwater ?

    Thanks

  55. Andy Banks

    Ray,
    Are Garmin planning in releasing a new HRM band to support this?
    The swim band is rated to static 5ATM which although would theoretically cover rec diving to 40m it is shy of the 11ATM the watch is rated to and 5ATM is static so I wouldn’t want to go to 40m with one even if it was under my wetsuit and so not subjected to the dynamic forces something like a watch would be (though I think compression folds in the neoprene as you move could feasibly add and ATM or so).

    • Good question, I’ll ask. I suspect probably not, only because I suspect there’s probably a limited number of people going beyond 40m and not being in a drysuit (who’d buy this watch).

  56. Emmanuel

    Next time you come to Memo and/or Brussels, please advise I would have taken the plunge with you!

  57. Thomas Hansen

    Thanks for the great info!

    Is it possible to get wireless data on tank pressure?
    Guess having air consumption would also be beneficial for computing safe(r) dive profiles

  58. Antonio D'Alessandro

    Is that charging port compatible eith F5X?

  59. Farhan

    Hey Ray,

    Can you please clarify on this. Garmin website states that these functions are available in Fenix 5x but not in Mk1.

    Preloaded gym activity profiles- Strength Training and Cardio Training
    Cardio workouts
    Strength workouts
    Automatic rep counting

    Auto multisport activities
    Manual multisport activities

    Kindly check and Clarify :)

    Thanks

  60. Henri Lellouche

    No wireless transmitter on this model that I can see. That’s a missed opportunity IMHO. Or did I just miss that detail in the specs?

  61. Andy Banks

    I wonder if the tech would be that simple; At the very least you’d need a secondary reciever;
    Suunto is a 5kHz Low Frequency to work through water Vs something like Bluetooth and ANT+ which are both around 2.4GHz.

  62. KingArt

    NO TANK PODS?

    What’s the point of having a Dive computer Watch that does NOT show tank pressure?

    What a Joke! I am happy with my Fenix 5X then.

  63. Ricky

    I was looking for a replacement for my Citizen Aqualand Duplex (battery went dead) and a back-up to my regular dive computer (the old backup crapped out). Plus, when I go offshore, I like adding the exact location where we dive to my logbook. Something more than “deep stepped reef, 8 miles offshore”. I usually drag my phone out and note the spot with it’s GPS.

    Now, I can do it all. I’m pretty interested. Being old, I need to see a live display to test legibility, and I need to see how difficult it is to program and to set the mix.

    As the owner of a dependable Vivoactive and and old Garmin 800 for cycling, I trust the brand.

    Thanks for the review.

    • HYoung

      Ricky,
      I think you will be pretty happy with both! I have found the readability to be fine and changing air/nitro mix to be super easy!

  64. MariuszM

    In todays market a dive computer without air integration will not get anywhere. I was very exited to read the specs (i currently got suunto DX a garmin 735xt) until the very last line : air integration : no. No thx

  65. Without wireless tank integration, the price point is obscene. You can buy a better dive computer for 1/5 of the price that does at least as much, and usually even more. As much as I love my Fenix3HR, I’ll stick to using it with IQ dive software until they add air integration AND bring the price into line.

  66. Vick

    battery life is improved!