Log in

Welcome to Dive Gear Reviews, a comprehensive guide to scuba diving equipment. Scuba diving is an expensive pursuit, so looking up reviews for a particular article of equipment is a wise precaution before investing any hard-earned money in it. However, consumer reviews may or may not be written by an experienced diver, and magazine reviews could be suspect due to the advertising ties of the publication in question. Dive Gear Reviews provides cross-referenced reviews assembled by an expert, making it possible to see at a glance what multiple sources said about a particular piece of scuba equipment. If one magazine loved a scuba regulator or a dive computer, but the consumers hated it, that information will be found here.

Aqualung Axiom i3 Scuba BCD Review

Written by Dive Gear Reviews Editor. Comments Off on Aqualung Axiom i3 Scuba BCD Review Posted in: BCDs, Over $500

The Axiom i3 is the premium jacket BCD entry in Aqualung’s i3 inflator control line (such as the Pro QD i3 and the Dimension i3). Sporting a snazzy design in Aqualung’s black, grey and navy blue colors, the Axiom i3 has earned high praise for its comfort, loads of features and ease of use in early consumer commentary.

Aqualung’s i3 system replaces the inflator hose and controller with a knob-like control mounted on the lower left of the BCD’s waistband, below the pocket. This eliminates danglies, as well as the need to raise the inflator hose to deflate with it. The only thing the vestigial shoulder hose handles now is manual inflation, and unless a diver needs it, that manual inflation hose remains tucked away in an open shoulder pocket.

Aqualung Axiom i3 BCDSome doubts surround the i3 system, but not among owners or field testers. As previously mentioned, the Axiom BCD is not the first Aqualung BCD to use the i3 system, so that system is hardly new, but that has not prevented a number of myths from continuing to swirl about Aqualung i3 BCDs. Critics contend that a bump or kick from an errant diver could activate the inflator, causing unsafe ascents or descents, or speculate about the system’s unproven reliability. However, none of these critics claim to either own an i3 BCD or to have field tested one, so they are merely speculating. This is despite the fact that the i3 system has now been in use since 2009, and almost all the owners of an i3 BCD have nothing but positive feedback for the system and love their i3 BCD.

The bottom line is that divers are a conservative lot, and suspicious of new technology. In the case of the Axiom i3, this suspicion is groundless.

The Axiom i3’s comfort is provided through Aqualung’s “Wrapture” harness and backplate system, which Axiom i3 owners regard as snug and stable.Other features of the Axiom i3 include an easy to use tank strap and buckle, integrated weights, octo-pocket, two fold-out pockets, five stainless steel D-rings and two plastic D-rings, and attachment points for a small knife located above the i3 controller. The air bladder has also been upgraded, and is now made out of a much tougher mix of materials. The only thing really missing for a BCD of this type is a built-in carrying handle.

Average Price: $660