Suunto launches DX, the world's first watch-sized rebreather computer

Posted on January 22nd 2013
CONTINUING the post from last week, Suunto has now announced its first foray into the rebreather market with the launch of its DX.
Promoted as the world’s first watch-sized rebreather-compatible dive computer, it is a “non-monitoring set-point dive computer designed to work as a support computer for the one fitted to the rebreather itself”.
In simple terms, that means it is not linked directly to your rebreather’s gas management systems like the unit’s onboard computers.
As a result the DX, pronounced D Ten, cannot automatically know or calculate the decompression schedule based on what precisely you are breathing.
Does it matter? Not when the computer allows you to pre-set the high and low set-points and the depths at which they should automatically switch it doesn’t.
Independent tests have found its profile runs as close to that of the in-build deco software on AP Diving’s Vision and the Shearwater Predators.
What also sets the Suunto DX apart is the new, advanced Suunto Fused™ RGBM algorith. Developed with Dr. Bruce Wienke, it seamlessly combines the benefits of the Suunto Technical RGBM with the latest full RGBM for deep dives.
For tec divers, it provides a slow continuous ascent from depth so technical and deep divers have a shorter total decompression time. For recreational divers it helps to maximise bottom time and minimize ascent time.
Watch-sized, is it a tad small? Well Suunto like their smaller computers and the D9tx proved a winner with the diving public, as did the D6i so I cannot see why this wouldn’t prove just as much of a hit.
When it comes to UK diving, I personally prefer a computer with a larger screen; Suunto’s HelO2 being a personal favourite of mine. If the company was able to fit the software into a body like that then it would be top of my Christmas list.
The DX also contains advanced dive functions for open-circuit divers such as trimix support including helium and oxygen, and gas switching between up to eight gases to satisfy the needs of any diver.
Suunto Ambassador and leading underwater explorer Jill Heinerth helped to develop the Suunto DX. “The Suunto DX is one of my support computers that go with my rebreather. It’s easy to integrate it into a rebreather dive plan, or any dive plan – open or closed circuit. It has one of the most accurate digital compasses, which I use to survey and make maps as well. It can really do anything, and it’s a beautiful, wearable watch. It has everything you need in a very small package, and it handles itself well under any conditions.”
Yes, the rebreather diving market is small at the moment but once sexy gear always has the potential to act like a beacon and draw people in.   
But the real sales benefit here is that this really is a computer that will really grow with you, from your first forays as a freediver, through to your open water dives, the tip-toe into technical diving, and on to rebreather diving. I think that’s where the market for the DX will first develop.
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