ScubaLab Tests the Best Dive Masks on the Market


Mask Test Protocol:

To evaluate the in-water performance of each mask, a team of ScubaLab test divers dived with them at Alexander Springs in central Florida. Using underwater slates and waterproof test sheets, divers scored each mask in five performance categories. Our team of divers also recorded comments about their experience with each mask and ranked in order their top three favorites in each of two mask categories — dual-lens and single- lens models.

Ergo Test Categories:

  1. Ease and security of adjustments, including buckles, swivels and quick releases
  2. Comfort of the strap, skirt, frame, nose pocket and all contact points
  3. Dryness overall, and effectiveness of seals and purge valves
  4. Field of view, both vertical and horizontal
  5. Mask volume and ease of clearing and equalizing

Because of the importance of proper fit, individual test divers did not proceed with in-water testing if a mask failed to fit him or her properly.


Shown on the graph accompanying each mask are that mask’s scores for comfort (including the strap, skirt, frame and contact points) and field of view (both horizontal and vertical, as perceived by the diver). The scoring is as follows: 5 = excellent; 4 = very good; 3 = good; 2 = fair; 1 = poor. Test divers also selected their top three favorite masks in each of the two test categories — dual lens and single lens.


The choice between mask types is partly a matter of personal preference and partly a function of special requirements a diver might have. Multi-lens masks, especially dual-lens models, generally have a smaller internal volume than single-lens models because their smaller size can allow them to be shaped closer to the diver’s face. A smaller volume is beneficial because it makes a mask easier to clear and equalize. They also can be equipped with corrective lenses, which many manufacturers offer for their most popular masks. Single-lens masks offer the widest uninterrupted field of view because they don’t have the obstruction of the nose bridge needed on a dual- or multi-lens mask. Single-lens masks can’t be fitted with corrective lenses and generally have somewhat larger volume, although many newer designs have significantly reduced volumes.

Q: What factors did test divers find most important?

A: Test divers’ favorite masks took top scores for comfort, with supple skirts, soft nose pockets and no hard parts contacting the face. That’s no surprise because an uncomfortable mask can quickly take the fun out of any dive.

Q: What are the pros and cons of frameless masks?

A: Molding the skirt directly to the lens gives the frameless mask a lower profile and eliminates any visual obstruction the frame might cause. Because the frameless masks’ lenses aren’t removable, they can’t be fitted with corrective lenses or replaced. — Roger Roy, ScubaLab Director

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Gear Profile: Cressi Travelight BCD

This jacket has been specifically designed for those who travel by plane as it is the result of painstaking research on the most suitable materials for reducing weight to a minimum. It has exactly the same characteristics as the Cressi Flex in the sea model but with the addition of the integrated Lock Aid weight system.

Nothing has been left to chance in the search to achieve a record weight, beginning with the choice of the material, a 210 denier nylon which is light yet very strong. The Travelight can be folded up in just a few seconds and fastened with a special retractable strap so that it can be stowed easily in its own carrying bag, which has a shoulder strap. Travelight’s very light structure and its anatomical shape make it a very tight-fitting and streamlined jacket once underwater and it offers very little resistance to forward movement.

Travelight Features:
– 10 denier nylon material, rubbery material (rear)
– 2 zip up pockets for accessories
– 2 rear weight pockets
– Soft, padded back, with double strap for fixing the tank
– D-rings and rings in light alloy
– Three discharge and pressure valves

Buoyancy Lbs: 13.5 (XS), 18.0 Lbs (S), 20.2 Lbs (M), 29.2 Lbs (L), 36.0 Lbs (XL)
Weight: 2.300 kg (XS), 2.400 kg (S), 2.500 kg (M), 2:600 kg (L) 2.800 kg (XL)

For more information on the Travelight and Lady Travelight visit,

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Estrella Navarro Announces Freediving Competition in Mexico

Estrella Navarro

Courtesy Estrella Navarro

Champion freediver Estrella Navarro.

The first annual “Big Blue” international freediving competition is scheduled for November 1-9, 2015.

Event organizer and Mexican national record holder, Estrella Navarro (in cooperation with AIDA Mexico and Cressi), is offering the competition to give athletes from around the world the opportunity to test their freediving limits in the beautiful, deep waters off Isla Espíritu Santo, Baja, Mexico.

“The Big Blue will feature five days of competition, one day of swimming with whale sharks, and a conference to promote ocean conservation,” says Navarro. “The visibility in November is the best of the year — you can see up to 30 meters [98 feet]! Plus we are giving each athlete the flexibility of choosing between constant weight (CWT), constant no-fins, and free immersion (FIM) for every dive — the choice is theirs!“

Inaugural attendees will include Guillaume Néry, Alexey Molchanov, and Carlos Coste.

Navarro recently broke three freediving records for her country of Mexico in one breath during this year’s Caribbean Cup in Roatan, Honduras, on June 2, 2015.

To learn more or to register, visit the competition website at Big

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Dive Buddy Shout Out Winners

Congratulations to the winners of our Dive Buddy Shout Out contest! One of the greatest things about scuba diving is not only what exciting things you see underwater, but the friendships you build with divers throughout the experience. Along with our friends at Cressi, we wanted divers from all around the […]

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Gear Profile: Cressi Leonardo Dive Computer


Leonardo Dive Computer

An elegant expression of simple, functional design, the Leonardo is a must-have for divers entering the sport and those who “just want to dive.”
A single button interface makes it effortless to program Air, Nitrox and Gauge modes the first time a diver picks the computer up, and an edge-to-edge, high-definition screen gives large numerical displays in a computer that is still compact and travel-friendly.

Technical Features:
• Air, Nitrox and Gauge modes
• FO2 adjustable between 21% and 50%
• PO2 adjustable between 1.2 bar and 1.6 bar
• CNS oxygen toxicity graphic indicator
• Single button interface (short push changes function, longer push selects functions)
• Three levels of user-adjustable conservatism
• User-selectable Deep Stop function
• Modified Haldne and Wienke algorithm
• Tissues: 9 with saturation hemi-phases between 2.5 and 480 minutes
• Ascent rate alarm (10 m per minute)
• Log book for 60 dives/75 hours of information with 20-second sampling rate
• Battery life indicator
• Distinct, easy-to-hear audible alarms
• User changeable battery
• Adjustable unit of measure: English or Metric
• Backlit display
• Built-in calendar and clock
• The instrument may be fully reset, in case of renting
• PC/Mac interface with dive profile (optional)

For more information about the Cressi Leonardo dive computer, visit

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