My First Dive Computer...

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keyshunter

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I believe it was 1989 when I bought my first dive computer--a Beuchat Aladin Pro. At the time I was doing a lot of deep air and it seemed to be a Godsend for deco times. But, for about a year I did not really trust it, and during hangs, I still checked tables for deco calculations.
 

Joebar

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Bought an Uwatec Aladin Sport in 1988.
Never used tables exept in theory dive lessons.
 

glennster

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my first was an orca edge, aka the “brick”. i have two, they still work, still use them on occasion. bought new in the early 80’s. still carry a set of tables with me too.
 

Searcaigh

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I started off with a Suunto Companion some time in the early 90s but still did all my calculations on the PADI wheel for a time until I upgraded to the Suunto Solution.

In 2004 when I did my Nitrox course I bought a Suunto Vyper, but I don't know what I did with my Solution. IT's possible I gave it to my daughter, I'll need to ask her.

About 10 years ago I bought a Suunto Vytec as I had started carrying a deco bottle with 50% for use on dives beyond 25m and switching to the 50% at 21m, not because I was in deco but to make my diving safer. The Vyper that I had at the time only managed one gas.

When I was moving towards tech around 2012 I bought the Suunto HelO2 and soon found out that this computer was too complicated for its own good. Half way through my IANTD ART course I bought a Petrel 2 and about three years ago bought a Perdix as a back up.

I used the HelO2 in gauge mode on one of my strobe arms until early 2020 when the pressure sensor failed and replaced it with my Vyper.
 

scubadada

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I dived US Navy tables from 1970-80. After a 17 year hiatus, I was recertified with my son and we dived PADI tables from 1997-2002. We were nitrox certified and I dived an Oceanic Pro Plus 2 from 2002-10. I switched to an Oceanic VT3 in 2010 and still dive it, 1529 dives, 1612 hours. I have dived a variety of backup computers, Cochran EMC-14, Dive Rite Nitek Duo (so conservative that I couldn't use it), Oceanic Geo 2, Dive Rite Nitek Q, and now, a Shearwater Teric. It's great running the VT3 and the Teric off the same transmitter.

I still have all of these computers and all of them work. The EMC-14, Nitek Duo, and Nitek Q are down in Florida, where I hope to be again soon.
upload_2021-2-8_8-30-51.png
 

Divin'Papaw

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I wasn't certified until 2005 so I've used a computer from day 1. My first computer was an Aeris Atmos 2. One just like this:

upload_2021-2-8_8-41-45.png


My second computer was a Nitek Duo. One just like this:

upload_2021-2-8_8-43-53.png


All subsequent computers have been Shearwaters (Petrel, Perdix AI, and Peregrine).
 

ATJ

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I learned to dive in 1978. While I learned how to use tables (and still know how to use them), I rarely used the tables for my diving because:
a) I memorised the NDLs and always stuck well beneath the times
b) A lot my dives were less than 10m.
c) I very rarely did repetitive dives (usually only one dive a day)

I would use the tables any time I did a repetitive dive.

My first liveaboard dive trip was not until 2002 and we were doing 4 dives a day. I hired dive computer for that because I couldn't be bothered messing with tables. I hired a DC for my next trip in 2003.

In 2005 I bought a Citizen Cyber Aqualand NX which served me well as my DC until it needed repairs in 2014 when I bought an Oceanic Atom 3.0. I used the Citizen (after it was repaired) as a backup for a few more years until it died again (and Citizen would no longer repair it).

I got a Shearwater Perdix in 2017, a Garmin Descent Mk1 in 2018. The Oceanic Atom 3.0 died last year and Oceanic couldn't repair it.
 

captain

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Orca Edge in the mid 80's, still have it, till works. Probably will hand it down to my grandson. It was specially ordered with my name machined into it.
DSC02329 (Small).JPG
 

lowwall

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As for tables, I think some people think their PDC is working out the table for them rather than calculating the algorithm that was used to create the table. That's why they seem to think the table is required to teach decompression theory. The table is not the algorithm, but a manual dive computer.
I agree. The tables are just an illustration of the theory. If you aren't going to be using the tables, then focus on the theory. I wouldn't teach the tables at all, because they aren't exactly intuitive once you move beyond the first dive and half-assing the training is potentially dangerous. The best use I can see for them for OW is for giving examples of how NDL decreases with depth and the effect of longer SIs on repetitive dive.

When I took OW in 2001, we spent probably 6x as much classroom time on the tables as we did on the theory even though most divers were already using computers. My son just got certified and I noticed the course has almost entirely dumped the table portion. I also noticed they used the time savings to shorten the course rather than expand the theory section or to work through how to use a computer.

Back to the original question. I don't see the point in buying expensive computers for the non-technical diving I do. I bought my first set of dive gear in 2003 or 4 as a package deal and it came with a basic Aeris computer in a console. In 2008, I got nitrox certified and switched to the cheapest Nitrox computer at the time, an Oceanic VEO 100 NX ($225 from Scubatoys) on a wrist mount which I used until the pressure sensor died on (luckily) my last dive on a trip to Coz in Dec 2019. I am currently using a Deep6 Excursion ($200 pre-release price).

Here's my then 11-year-old Veo in the Similans:
20190514102656.jpg
 

tursiops

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  • I started with Navy tables in the 1960s in college, had a cool Seiko dive watch with the first-dive Navy NDLs on the wrist strap.
  • Got out of college and didn't dive for almost a decade, got serious as part of my job with a NAUI cert (my first cert) in 1082, used only Navy tables through 1986
  • Got a new job in a new non-seaside city, with a new wife, and didn't dive again for a decade.
  • Still on tables (PADI RDP and Wheel), until 1999; took a Nitrox class in May 1999, finally saw the advantages of a computer....
  • Bought an Aeris Savant in Sept 1999, just before a dive trip to Bermuda. Whoa! No turning back after that!
  • I don't know for sure how many/which computers I have owned since then but they include an Oceanic VersaPro, A DiveRite Nitek He, a DiveRite Plus, a DiverRite Duo, a Zeagle iN2itition (also a Seiko, like the DiveRite Trio), Petrel, Petrel 2, Perdix, Teric, Deep6 Excursion.
  • But the Wheel was great.
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/peregrine/

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