Reviewed by our experts:
We gave our 2 dive computer geeks a job: test 32 different dive computers and write reviews of the best. The result is 16 of the best dive computers out there:
This guides review judge
Torben is a dive nut, with a passion for dive gear and especially dive computers.
Dive computer expert
Simon is a dive computer geek. Loves the tech and algoritmes.
Buying a dive computer is a jungle of seaweed - no matter if it's your first dive computer or if you're an advanced tech diver looking for yet another dive computer - you want to find the right one.
We've put our experts to work and they've compiled a thorough list of the best dive computer available in 2017.
To make it easy for you, we've made it possible to compare prices and features across all the different top dive computers. This way, you'll get the best computer for your needs (at the best price too).
Think about your needs for a dive computer!
It's easy to buy a computer that's much to advanced for you needs, or one that will quickly become insufficient.
What's your level? Are you new to diving or long past the first 100 dives? Or somewhere inbetween?
Below you can find a selection based on your needs, pick the one that fits you:
Pro's and Con's of the SUUNTO D4i dive computer:
I have been diving with Suunto computer more than a decade, and upgraded to the D4i to get rid of an additional hose when diving in cold water with a dry suit. The D4i feels more like a watch than a dive computer, which is nice, because I can comfortably keep it on my wrist during surface intervals. I love the free dive mode, as it helps me in my free dive depth and bottom time training.
Pro's and Con's of the SUUNTO ZOOP dive computer:
I wanted an easy and inexpensive dive computer to kick off my diving adventures. I wanted something simple and easy to read. The Zoop does the job very well. The only problem I had was learning to use the computer to access my dives, but once I got the system down it was easy.
Pro's and Con's of the Cressi Leonardo dive computer:
I picked up this dive computer to give to students and dive tourists. For my students it is easier to keep track of their dive times, ascent rates, and helps them understand how their time effects how long they can stay underwater with multi-level diving. The ability to reset the computer was the deciding factor to buy this for my classes. The oversized case is a little annoying, but not terrible.
Pro's and Con's of the Suunto Zoop Novo dive computer:
The Zoop Novo was a great purchase for my wife; she hasn’t been diving for long, so I wanted an easy to read computer to help her monitor her no dc time and ascent rate. The only down sides are that it is not comfortable for her to wear during surface intervals, and the lack of integrated air means she has to monitor two separate gauges.
Pro's and Con's of the Mares Puck Pro dive computer:
I love the simple interface of the Puck Pro. Sure it made be a little big, but that translates to being easy to read in almost any situation. I dive as often as I can, and the battery definitely gets a work out. So, the user changeable battery is an amazing feature.
Pro's and Con's of the Shearwater Perdix dive computer:
We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Shearwater Perdix:
All I need to say about this computer is wow. At its price point it seems a little high to be not air integrated, but once I got the computer I wasn’t the least bit disappointed. The large size isn’t comfortable out of the water, but is perfect in the water. I love that it is comfortable on either wrist which allows me more flexibility with the tools I take with while working underwater. The abundant information available makes me feel safe and more at ease on my deeper and gas-mix dives.
Pro's and Con's of the Suunto D6i dive computer:
There is something to be said about a dive computer that is as beautiful out of the water as it is in the water. Plus, the D6i has all the features I need for my recreational diving. The display is still easy to read and manipulate even though it is watch sized. The Suunto algorithms are more conservative than other computers, but I’m ok with that because it keeps me further away from dcs.
Pro's and Con's of the Suunto Vyper dive computer:
The price is good and it's a dive computer that will fit you at entry level but still work once you get more advanced. It's really easy to understand, and use on any recreational dive.
Pro's and Con's of the Suunto D4i Novo dive computer:
For a multi-sport diver, scuba and free diver, this watch works very well in all situations. The small form and low profile don’t cause additional drag. For scuba, I love that it is air integrated so I have one less hose, and I don’t have to worry about a gauge dragging. It is great for traveling because I can easily put it on rental regs and don’t have to carry as much with me while on international trips.
Pro's and Con's of the Suunto Eon Steel dive computer:
The EON steel is everything a diver could possibly want in a dive computer. The large color display is easy to read and decipher the different information for the diver. I loved that I can custom the data I see. The price is high, but is worth paying for. I have never felt better protected when diving with a computer, and the durable construction dissolves fears of dropping or damage from falling tanks.
Pro's and Con's of the Mares Icon HD dive computer:
The Icon HD was a great purchase for many divers. t's a full feature wrist-mount computer that is affordable. While the computer is big, and not easy to carry around on the surface, it is perfect when underwater. The display is the easiest to read that I have dived with. The color coded tank pressure lets me know at a glance where I am on available air. Perfect for the diver who wants it all.
Pro's and Con's of the Aqualung i300 dive computer:
This is a simple and easy to use computer. You get good value of money, a realiable computer, that is perfect for a brand new diver, but will meet your needs for many dives.
Pro's and Con's of the Mares Matrix dive computer:
The Matrix is almost the perfect size for a watch dive computer, and the weight is great. Diving with the Matrix is as easy and it's very reliable. The digital compass is fool proof. The only down side is that I still have to have an analog pressure gauge.
Pro's and Con's of the Oceanic Geo 2.0 dive computer:
The Geo 2.0 is a nearly seamless integration between watch and dive computer. I have to sneak in dives where I can, so being able to see the current time underwater allows me to make sure I don’t enjoy myself for too long. The menus are a little confusing, but they are easier enough to learn and navigate. Overall this is a great dive computer watch for any diver.
Pro's and Con's of the Oceanic Geo 2.0 dive computer:
We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Shearwater Petrel:
Two huge features stood out to me when I picked up the Petrel. 1) The AA battery option makes my save-a-dive kit much easier to maintain. I use rechargeable AA’s which further decreases my cost of having to replace. 2) The 1000 hour memory is amazing. I use this computer for work and play, but being able to record every dive makes sure I am covered and backed up if there are ever any questions or issues with work. Diving with the computer is beautiful and easy. The large and bright screen never leaves me guessing on my air or dc times.
Pro's and Con's of the Oceanic VTX dive computer:
I really enjoy the Oceanic VTX. The led display and Bluetooth integration make this computer feel futuristic and high class. The menus and setting are very easy to learn and modify, and the bright screen is very clear while diving. The only downside is that the screen dims automatically making it harder to read, and in bright sunlight the display gets a little washed out.
I was quite happy to plan with my dive tables and logbook and spend the money on more dive trips.
When I started working and diving every day, sometimes 4-5 times, my computer became one of my favorite things.
Here are a few Common Features you’ll like about your dive computer:
Actually my first computer was built into my console, but that’s not so common these days. It is a lot easier to look at my wrist to get information about my depth and bottom time than to have to bend down and check my gauges all the time.
Heck, some computers even replace all your gauges and console entirely.
Having mine on my wrist means I tend to look at it a lot more often too. Some computers are even built into masks, giving you a heads-up display so you don’t even have to look at your wrist. Another win for streamlining!
Tables assume that you go straight down and stay at that level (or series of levels) for the time you planned exactly. But what if you spend a lot of time looking at a turtle at 18 metres (60fsw) and spend half the time at 24 meters (80fsw)?
It seems like a small thing but your computer will tell you how much more (or less) bottom time you will get and change your dive plan as you go.
Your computer does not simply let you know the bottom remaining time for the current dive. It will also let you calculate your surface interval and plan your next dives.
A table does this great when doing only a few dives, but when you are doing a lot of repetitive diving every day you have to remember you still might have nitrogen in your body the next morning.
Here's more about Decompression Sickness.
I never seriously thought about the 10 hour ‘surface interval’ I did overnight until my (then new) computer told me I was starting my first dive in pressure group ‘C’.
Your computer will remember details about your last dives just like a logbook.
This is great for people like me who don’t like to get their logbooks wet and prefer to write it all down with a beer at the end of the day.
Some will even connect to your computer, automatically filling in an e-logbook and giving you detailed graphs and statistics.
There are various alarms that you can set on some computers to let you know when stuff happens.
I never want to hear the 5 minutes of bottom time remaining alarm, but it has been helpful sometimes when I was distracted. I use my safety stop one a lot, which I have set to let me know when I get to 5 meters (16fsw) and then counts down 3 minutes.
I also find the rate of ascent alarm useful, which lets me know when I am going up too quickly. This is especially good when I am teaching students to do a controlled emergency swimming ascent “if you start to hear beeping, slow down”.
Yep, whether I’m timing a student breathing from a free flowing regulator or trying to figure out when the bar will close I know my dive computer is there.
Not all watches work very well when regularly exposed to pressure at depth and not all computers can be worn around town. Is it useful to you having one device that does both?
Some computers wirelessly connect to a transmitter in your first stage and can give you information about remaining air pressure.
They will also tell you how quickly you are consuming your air and will calculate how much time it will take you at your current depth before you use it up.
Gas mixes/Oxygen Exposure
Another great feature available on some computers is keeping track of different gas blends and oxygen exposure when diving with enriched air and Nitrox. Some will even manage multiple blends and allow you to switch between them during a dive.
Some computers have an electronic compass. They are supposed to be a little less sensitive to having to be perfectly level and can remember headings for you. I have heard mixed opinions about how useful and accurate they are.
Some computers have built in GPS allowing you to tag a specific coordinate to navigate towards – such as your dive boat.
User replaceable battery
Does your computer have to be sent in to a dealer to have the battery changed? These computers will cost you a bit more in the long term as you will have to pay each time.
If you’re not near a service shop when the battery goes be prepared to live without it for a little while whilst you wait.
Choosing your computer
Computers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, have different features and big cost differences.
In some parts of the world they can be a status symbol (like the sexy Suunto titanium range) and in other places they almost never see them.
I always read reviews and talk to people about their equipment before buying anything. Think about whether looks are important, what features you need, how often you will use it and how much you want to spend.
Remember that your computer is only accurate about your own dive. Your buddy might go a little deeper or enter the water sooner than you. Always use the most conservative computer and have a backup plan just in case.
Which Dive Computer do you use? Do you have any personal advice to share with others? Leave a comment below!