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Best Dive Computer For Beginners

Updated on June 9, 2012

Diving Deeper To Solve The Quest For The Best Dive Computer For Beginners

Ever thought or imagined of what would be the best dive computer for beginners in scubadiving? I have few points to share... Stay tuned!

We have wide variety of dive computers in our market these days - different brands offer their products, trying to satisfy the smallest desire of the customer. And they did great!

For the guy, who is about to join glorious union of divers, it is quite a task to select the best dive computer among huge amount of different models of instruments. Or, maybe, it would be better to say - the most appropriate computer, according to someone's specific needs!

Dive Computer Models That Will Make Life Of The Beginner Easier

Follow Me In Brief Comparison Of Specs & Functions Of Few Straightforward Dive Computers That Will Help Newbie In Diving Become More Experienced With NO Hassle!

When a person who is new to scubadiving starts looking for dive computer - many questions and concerns come out to surface (just recalling myself here!)

First of all, to get some idea in step-by-step dive computer selection, I refer you to Dive Computer Selection. You will find there descriptions of the dive computers from Aeris and Cressi, Mares and Oceanic, Suunto and Tusa, Sherwood and UWATEC.

When I was doing exhaustive search my first dive computer - I wanted to buy something simple & easy to learn, understand, and dive with, so that, getting more experience with dive computers, before investing in more sophisticated & expensive device...

Cressi Leonardo
Cressi Leonardo

Cressi Leonardo Does Its Job As Promised

Cressi Leonardo is new dive computer that you may buy at the very beginning of your dive career and it will still be of great use later when you progress as a diver. This Cressi dive computer like nothing else compares both in features and value for money.

It comes with big and easy to read display, one control button, Air, Nitrox and Gauge dive modes and with diver adjustable Altitude.

It allows us to set Deep Stop to ON/OFF and Personal Conservative Factor for additional safety, CNS oxygen toxicity bar graph, it has RESET function, user replaceable battery, PC interface option, and large memory capacity for 60 dives...

Plenty of functions in the size of wrist watch, very reliable and easy to use dive instrument.

Positive feedback about Cressi Leonardo from users includes following:

  • easy to understand user manual
  • intuitive interface
  • easy to read and understand dive data
  • strong backlight
  • loud sound alarms
  • very reasonable price

Cressi Leonardo is absolutely perfect for beginners and recreational divers - user friendly and intuitive interface, big and easy to read display, sharp numbers and lots of detailed information, customizable features, perfect management of No-Deco and Decompression modes.

Mares Puck Wrist
Mares Puck Wrist

Mares Puck Does Everything Simply & Reliably

My first dive computer was Mares Puck - perfect instrument not only for entry level, but also for recreational diving, as it equipped with functions that cover variety of diving conditions.

It designed with 1 control button for an easy access and has very easy scroll-through menu. User manual is perfectly written and structured - even child can operate this instrument!

This dive computer supports 3 dive modes - Air, 1 Nitrox mix and Gauge. You may use it even for diving with technical gas mixes or for FREEdiving in Gauge mode.

Mares Puck allows to set up Personal Conservative Factor and has Automatic Safety Stop remainder. It has large display and it is very easy to read data - digits are large and contrast is good.

Another good thing about it - diver replaceable battery option. This is very useful feature, especially, if we need to replace battery on the boat!

Mares Puck may be worn in console assembly with submersible pressure gauge (SPG) and compass, which adds even more functions to it - if you get such a console - you probably won't need another dive computer for long period of time!

Positive feedback from users includes following:

  • easy to follow directions to set up and use
  • large screen and super easy scroll-through menu
  • price is extremely competitive with similar and even more advanced dive computers
  • easy replaceable battery by diver

I couldn't think about any downsides of Mares Puck - maybe only one - no battery "hot swap" or data retention function. So, before replacing battery, wait until you will offgas completely!

Aeris Manta
Aeris Manta

Aeris Manta - Nitrox Dive Computer With All The Necessary Features At Reasonable Price

Aeris Manta is made in dive watch computer style and can be used by advanced divers and it is also perfect for the beginners in scubadiving who are serious to learn new concepts of advanced dive instrument.

Aeris Manta supports diving with Air, 1 Nitrox mix, and also has Gauge and FREEdiving modes. It is really multifunctional dive computer with all the functions we need to dive comfortable in variety of conditions.

It has big digits and good contrast display - very easy to read and understand dive data. We may wear it onshore, as it is full-featured digital watch. Manta has 4 control buttons on user's interface.

Positive feedback from users includes following:

  • easy to read and interpret data
  • strong backlight - good for night dives
  • no problems to press buttons if you dive in cold waters and wear thick gloves
  • many features that are found on computers twice as expensive
  • not too bulky to wear it as a watch on shore
  • really good dive computer with all the necessary features at reasonable price

Few other convenient features are - setting Personal Conservative Factor and Safety Stop Depth and Time adjustment, user replaceable battery and battery "hot swap", optional PC interface. You may get Manta for about USD400 which is quite good for such multifunctional dive computer, because many features are found in computers twice as expensive.

Oceanic Geo
Oceanic Geo

Oceanic Geo - Excellent Choice For Beginners & Recreational Divers

Oceanic Geo was introduced to the scubadiving world few years ago and it was made to satisfy the requirements not only beginners in diving, but also advanced recreational divers, and guys from freediving community.

We may set Geo for Air and Nitrox, as a Gauge, or use Geo for FREEdiving. It supports 1 Nitrox mix with up to 50% FO2.

It has big and easy to interpret display, Safety Stop depth and time setting, Personal Conservative Factor setting. If you use it for freediving - Geo has special set of alarms dedicated to this mode. Geo gives us possibility to replace dead battery and has battery "hot swap" option. PC interface cable - optional.

Oceanic Geo and Aeris Manta are two similar dive computers, as these to brands belong to Pelagic Group.

Positive feedback from users includes following:

  • diver replaceable battery
  • Safety Stop Time and Depth setting
  • intuitive and easy to read display

Main downside of this dive computer - a bit hard to follow user manual, so if you go for this one - prepare to put some time to learn which button to press and when!

Suunto Cobra
Suunto Cobra

Suunto Cobra Keeps You Well Aware Of Air Consumption

Suunto Cobra is a hose air-integrated dive computer with optional Quick Disconnect feature and optional PC interface data cable. Cobra perfectly suits for the beginners in diving, for backup dive instrument and for advanced recreational divers.

This dive computer may be successfully used in variety of diving situations, thanks to its 3 dive modes capabilities - Air, Nitrox, Gauge. You may definitely use it as a main instrument, but if you prefer opposite - it will work great as a backup as well!

It has very extensive set of user adjustable features, and some of them are below:

  • 3 operation buttons
  • 3 dive modes: Air, Nitrox, Gauge
  • hose air-integration
  • FO2 - Air, 21% - 50%
  • Continuous Decompression function
  • Altitude Program setting: A0(0 - 300 meters)/A1(300 - 1500 meters)/A2(1500 - 3000 meters)
  • Personal Conservative Factor setting: P0/P1/P2 - to make this dive computer progressively more conservative
  • On-Unit Dive Simulator
  • user replaceable battery, etc.

Positive feedback about Suunto Cobra from divers who are extensively diving with it:

  • user friendly, very adjustable and middle of the road conservative
  • very easy to use, big display and gives a lot more time underwater
  • great price for dive computer and compass console
  • Deco mode functionality is very good
  • quick disconnect (QD) feature is very convenient

Suunto Cobra is very well-featured air-integrated dive computer with good price-features-usability ratio. Any diver will be happy using it in underwater adventures!

Save Great Bucks On eBay!

Bidding and buying dive computers from eBay we may save great money for other stuff!

Resources For You!

You will find more useful stuff, like variety of the dive computers reviews and ratings made by real divers when visit Dive Computer Wizard!

Like this lens? Share your feedback or just give thumbs up! Your blurbs are welcome! :)

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    • profile image

      Ezra 5 months ago

      Thank you. It’s really helpful for me.

    • idiver profile image

      idiver 4 years ago

      @SeThCipher: Hi, Se ThCipher!

      You're right! I remember myself how I was overwhelmed with data before deciding on buying my first dive computer.

      So that's why I've been collecting info and reviews about this subject for few years and created a dive computer portal online, where all people who is interested can find useful info and get help in dive computer correct selection!

      If you have one - come to our site and leave a review - let everyone learn from your experience!

    • profile image

      SeThCipher 5 years ago

      Great man. Covering the dive computer topic is one of the most common questions for all divers.