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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.

Category Archives: Dive Gear Tips

Advice and tips on dive gear.

26
April

Why Your Regulator Might Be Leaking

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Why Your Regulator Might Be Leaking Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides, Scuba Regulators

Something every diver dreads is getting wet and heading down only to have your buddy signal you that your regulator is leaking. As small as that little trickle of bubbles running to the surface, it still means an aborted dive for the safe and cautious, and anything more than the odd bubble should be treated […]

21
November

Scuba Regulator Maintenance Steps

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Scuba Regulator Maintenance Steps Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides, Scuba Regulators

Like cars, regulators have evolved from finicky machines that required constant maintenance, tweaking and repair into sound and reliable devices that rarely need major work during a reasonable lifetime. Even so, as a scuba diver your life depends on your regulator functioning without so much as a hitch every single time you roll off the […]

03
October

Dive Computer Algorithms

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Dive Computer Algorithms Posted in: Dive Computers, Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides

A dive computer’s algorithm is at the heart of what that particular gadget does, because when you get right down to it, everything else on the computer is an accessory. Yes, the depth gauge replaces or supplements the old analog depth gauge, but a dive computer is first and foremost about increasing your margin of […]

21
September

How to Quickly Check a Rental Scuba Mask for Fit

Written by Editor. Comments Off on How to Quickly Check a Rental Scuba Mask for Fit Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Dive Masks

A lot of casual scuba divers don’t own item number one of their own scuba gear, and the first thing said diver must navigate for virtually every scuba and snorkeling trip is finding a dive mask that fits. Often the dive operator will simply give you a mask, but given that a bad fit can […]

10
August

Best BCDs

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Best BCDs Posted in: BCDs, Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides

Updated September 16, 2013 The BCD sits in the same stratum as a regulator, in that its usually expensive and one of the two items a diver must have as part of their kit if they want to get away rentals. Today, BCDs come in many shapes and sizes, and in the last couple of […]

24
July

Best Fins

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Best Fins Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Fins, Scuba Product Guides

Updated July 15, 2013 Fins are another one of those critical pieces of scuba gear, so critical that they are always among the first pieces of gear a diver acquires when she starts to assemble her kit. At the same time, many divers are surprisingly careless when it comes to selecting their fins. Figuring one […]

27
June

Best Dive Masks

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Best Dive Masks Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Dive Masks, Scuba Product Guides

Updated July 1, 2013 Dive masks are at least as essential to diving as a regulator and an air tank, yet they might very well be the most overlooked piece of gear in the kit of many a scuba diver. Without the mask, you can’t see much of anything underwater. However, few divers invest much […]

15
June

Aluminum vs. Carbon vs. Steel Scuba Tanks

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Aluminum vs. Carbon vs. Steel Scuba Tanks Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Other Accessories, Scuba Product Guides

For decades, divers shopping for their own air cylinder(s) have had two basic choices: aluminum or steel. Carbon fiber is a relative newcomer to scuba tanks, despite the fact that material has been used in high performance manufacturing sectors for many years. The old aluminum vs. steel debate is already out of date, and will […]

18
May

Paddle vs. Split Fins

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Paddle vs. Split Fins Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Fins, Scuba Product Guides

After open heeled vs. closed, the most basic distinction in dive fins are paddle vs. split. However, unlike the heel distinctions, which are about how the fin is attached to your foot and therefore usually a matter of comfort and lesser personal preferences, paddle vs. split fin issues can have a serious impact on your […]

07
May

Open-Heel vs. Full-Foot Fins

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Open-Heel vs. Full-Foot Fins Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Fins, Scuba Product Guides

Open-heel vs. full-foot fins are one of those gear issues that tends to produce clear preferences among divers. Where one diver will say that once he went open heeled he never looked back, another will tell you that old fashioned full-foot fins are more reliable and produce more thrust. Since a pair of fins is […]

14
April

Comparing Point-and-Shoot Underwater Cameras

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Comparing Point-and-Shoot Underwater Cameras Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides, Underwater Cameras

Intova vs. Sealife vs. Sea and Sea Most divers out there are not looking to compete with Stephen Frink for regular appearances in the pages of National Geographic and Scuba Diving, and therefore they are not interested in taking a professional-grade Nikon, marrying it to an aftermarket housing, attaching powerful lamps to it and creating […]

Updated March 19, 2013 Most scuba divers acquire and replace equipment on a budget, and some budgets are more expansive than others. While most divers shop on either the basis of the best gear for the least cost, or even the lowest cost outright, some divers enjoy much more expansive budgets. Also, non-divers are often […]

22
February

Integrated Weights, BCDs and Safety

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Integrated Weights, BCDs and Safety Posted in: BCDs, Dive Gear Tips

The tragic death of police diver Timothy Schock at Greenbrier Lake points directly towards BCD maintenance issues and the safety of integrated weight systems, two often neglected subjects in the scuba community. There is only so much that can be gleaned from even a detailed news article, but some lessons are very easily drawn from […]

15
February

Cheapest Scuba Gear

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Cheapest Scuba Gear Posted in: By Price, Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides

Updated February 18, 2013 “Cheap” sometimes means “low quality,” but this list focuses purely on the least expensive scuba gear than meets with a minimum working standard. These aren’t “best buys,” which reflect the bargain hunters maxim of getting the most for your money, even if it means paying a little more. Instead, this list […]

30
January

Best Buys in Scuba Gear

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Best Buys in Scuba Gear Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides

Updated January 21, 2013 The idea of a “Best Buy” is all about getting the maximum bang for your buck, and not plunging to the bottom in search of the cheapest product possible. The concept is about establishing a balance of the best quality possible at the most reasonable price available. Best buys are of […]

09
January

Best “Semi-Dry” Wetsuits

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Best “Semi-Dry” Wetsuits Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides, Wetsuits

Some divers gripe there is no such thing as a “semi-dry” suit, and while the term is oxymoronic, it is no more so than “fresh frozen” or “virtually spotless.” As a practical matter, semi-dry wetsuits are at the top of the wetsuit range, including the thickest and best-sealed wetsuits available. Expect any suit sporting the […]

17
October

Scuba Gear Gift Ideas for 2011

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Scuba Gear Gift Ideas for 2011 Posted in: Dive Gear Tips

Shopping for a Christmas present or other gift for a scuba diver poses all the typical problems in choosing the right gift, plus a few extra dive-related complications. Most non-divers face the intimidating problem of not being familiar enough with their spouse’s/relative’s/friend’s scuba gear to even know where to begin shopping, let alone have the […]

01
September

How to Care for and Maintain BCDs

Written by Editor. Comments Off on How to Care for and Maintain BCDs Posted in: BCDs, Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides

Even a second-hand, budget BCD is a major investment, and along with a dive computer and a regulator, your BCD is probably one of the most expensive pieces of scuba equipment you own. BCDs are also important because they are the foundation of your gear assembly, the one thing that almost everything you take on […]

27
July

How to Care For and Maintain Your Dive Mask

Written by Editor. Comments Off on How to Care For and Maintain Your Dive Mask Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Dive Masks, Scuba Product Guides

Dive masks are your portal into the underwater world, and once a mask fits well it becomes almost an extension of the body. This might explain why most divers don’t devote as much maintenance to their masks as they do their regulator or BCD, despite its critical importance to the underwater experience. Many simply dunk […]

13
June

How to Clean and Defog a New Dive Mask

Written by Editor. Comments Off on How to Clean and Defog a New Dive Mask Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Dive Masks, Scuba Product Guides

New dive masks invariably come coated in a thin layer of oil. The manufacturer puts this oil on the mask to protect the silicon skirt, helping to retain its flexibility and full color while the mask is on the display shelf. The problem is that this oil retains moisture, so only a little of it […]

11
February

Product Guide: How to Fit and Buy Dive Masks

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Product Guide: How to Fit and Buy Dive Masks Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Dive Masks, Scuba Product Guides

Because the fit is so important, Dive Gear Reviews urges you to not buy dive masks from an online retailer. You really do need to go to a brick and mortar store and try a new mask on in person, and preferrbly buy the very same mask you tried. No online discount is worth the risk of buying a mask that fits poorly.

06
December

Underwater Camera Guide (Casual Scuba Divers)

Written by Editor. Comments Off on Underwater Camera Guide (Casual Scuba Divers) Posted in: Dive Gear Tips, Scuba Product Guides, Underwater Cameras

Casual scuba divers buying an underwater camera often find choosing a camera to be a confusing proposition. Given the price tag, the selection of an underwater camera might even become discouraging. However, it doesn’t need to be that way. Only divers looking to follow in the footsteps of underwater photography gurus like Stephen Frink need […]