Shearwater Research Inc. was founded in 2004 by Bruce Partridge, its CEO, who had a unique overlap in his background with computer science and advanced technical diving that gave him a new perspective for diving equipment.
This led him to design an intuitive menu that would be easy to use while underwater, which became one of the company’s first major focuses. Partridge was experienced with open-circuit technical diving and rebreathing which informed his understanding of a diver’s needs during a dive and the design of the company’s products.
Shearwater Research is known for its easy-to-use and minimal interfaces that make its equipment user friendly and quickly navigable during a dive. It should be noted that the company is also involved with the scientific diving community, and its representatives attend global conferences in order to support research organizations with a focus on decompression theory.
If you’re on the lookout for a new dive computer, set a maximum amount for yourself that you would be comfortable paying for the device.
The prices for dive computers run the gamut, so be sure to know the range of computer prices that you will be able to comfortably afford.
What Is This Type of Product?
Shearwater’s products employ decompression technology with Trimix dive computers that include VPM-B and Bühlmann with gradient factors, which are some of the most common decompression models that technical divers use. Additionally, Shearwater simply displays all of the diver’s information in ways that can be digested quickly, which can be crucial in some circumstances. The company also supplies decompression computers to rebreather manufacturers with a goal of bolstering the safety and reliability of the devices.
What Does This Type of Product Do?
Shearwater Research manufactures products that assist divers while they are underwater. The Teric is a dive computer and watch while most of the company’s other products are standalone devices. Dive computers are used to measure the amount of time that has elapsed during a dive as well as the dive’s depth. Then a safe ascent is calculated for a diver to follow in order to avoid decompression sickness, or the bends.
How Does It Work?
Commonly, dive computers use ambient pressure input in algorithms in order to display the time left to the no-stop limit. Once that time has passed, a required decompression to surface time with risk of decompression sickness is calculated. There are also dive computers available that are able to compensate for gas switching during the dive. Many modern dive computers can also send the calculated data to personal computers through an included cable or via Wi-Fi. The devices are battery-powered computers that are mounted inside a pressure-resistant and waterproof case. The calculations that the dive computer makes are based on real-time measurements of time and pressure.
Where Can You Buy This Type of Product?
A Shearwater Research dive computer can be purchased from retail dive shop locations as well as from online retailers.
How We Reviewed
We understand that the purchase of a new dive computer will not likely be an impulse purchase, and because of this we want to offer honest and accurate information when it comes to these products. It is also important to us that you understand our review process.
First, we research these products down to their most minute details, and then we compare them to other products offered by Shearwater Research. Finally, we review feedback from customers who have already purchased the products in order to gain a clear understanding of the general consensus about it.
Overall Price Range of This Product
Depending on the manufacturer, a dive computer can cost anywhere between $500 and $2,000.
How It Compares
Teric Wrist Dive Computer with Transmitter
Shearwater Research’s Teric is both a timepiece as well as a dive computer with a high-resolution, full-color, AMOLED display.
The controls are intuitive and compact on the dive computer, and it offers many different customization options. While also working as an everyday watch with multiple faces, it also has air integration that can connect to two transmitters.
The Teric also features a new freediving mode with both haptic and audible alarms that can be configured for time and depth or can be disabled. It also has configurable sample rates as well as indicators for ascent and descent rate that have been improved over past models.
The Teric can be purchased for [amazon fields="B07DCQCRJW" value="price"].
All of Shearwater’s devices come with a two-year warranty.
[amazon link="B01N78C44T" title="Perdix AI" /]
[amazon fields="B01N78C44T" value="thumb" image_size="large" image_alt="Perdix AI"]
Perdix AI is an air integrated dive computer which gives you all of the features of Shearwater’s Perdix. The large screen can be easily read and displays the pressure in the tank along with the remainder of your gas time.
It has the ability to connect with two transmitters, and the device is powered with AA batteries that let it function for up to 40 hours on a single battery cycle. The Perdix AI also has a variety of different diving modes and is even 30 percent smaller than the Petrel (reviewed below).
Like the Teric, the Perdix AI also has a simple and intuitive interface for quick access to information.
The Perdix AI can be purchased for [amazon fields="B01N78C44T" value="price"].
All Shearwater Research products include a two-year warranty.
The Petrel 2 SA features rugged construction and has had its reliability affirmed by divers around the world. The Petrel 2 SA has multiple diving modes such as OC Recreational, OC Technical, CC/BO and Gauge, and as with Shearwater’s other products the display is large and legible with an intuitive and simple control scheme.
The entire dive computer runs on a single AA battery, and the device includes a digital compass with a three-axis digital compass. You can also take control of all of the data that you record with the Petrel 2 SA on your personal computer. Analyze your decompression profile, temperature and other data sets.
ith Bluetooth all of your data is transferred quickly, and you can select only the information that you would like displayed.
The Shearwater Research Petrel 2 SA can be purchased for [amazon fields="B00S1U9S7M" value="price"].
All Shearwater Research products include a two-year warranty.
[amazon link="B0797WCPL6" title="NERD 2" /]
[amazon fields="B0797WCPL6" value="thumb" image_size="large" image_alt="NERD 2"]
The NERD 2 is a remote display for scuba divers and includes a Micro LCD display. It also includes a new universal mount that is capable of operating with most regulators and many rebreather loops. Like with the other Shearwater Research products, the two-button interface makes an appearance so you know that navigation will be simple.
Additionally, the NERD 2 has a dive log that holds 1,000 hours’ worth of data and it is powered by a rechargeable battery. It should be noted that a mount is required in order to keep the NERD 2 in its proper position, and it is packaged with options for either an open-circuit or a closed-circuit rebreather.
As with the other Shearwater devices, there are multiple dive modes like external monitoring, digital compass, and OC recreational.
The NERD 2 can be purchased for [amazon fields="B0797WCPL6" value="price"].
All of Shearwater Research’s products include a two-year warranty.
What To Look For
For those who are experienced divers and have a need for an advanced and technical dive computer, there may not be a better choice than Shearwater Research. The company has the scientific background to back its products, but if you are interested in continuing your search for a dive computer, following these tips will help to keep your investment a painless purchase.
- Set a maximum amount for yourself that you would be comfortable paying for a dive computer. The prices for dive computers run the gamut, so be sure to know what range of computers that you will be able to comfortably afford. This can also help to begin narrowing your choices until you find the best dive computer for you.
- Find a dive computer with features that you need in your dives, and continue to search for other computers that have those same features. By this same token, be on the lookout for models that have features that you are not interested in or do not believe you will ever use or need. This will help you to continue narrowing down the different dive computers as well as keep your cost low.
- Search for reviews from customers who have already purchased the dive computer. Looking at feedback from other divers can be a great way to assess the quality of a dive computer. Be sure to read both positive and negative reviews in order to gain a well-balanced view of the product. Additionally, it is worth noting that low-rated products are typically red flags for poor-quality products.
After a thorough review, we found there are many good things to say about any Shearwater Research dive computer. The construction is solid and built from high-quality materials that will last you for dive after dive, and the features that these computers are packed with would be a highlight for any technical diver. Additionally, the Teric is a robust dive computer that is disguised as your average timepiece with customizable faces.
Any diver would also be pleased to know the company’s background and involvement with decompression studies as well, which makes the brand have a bit more of a reputable edge. The ability to transfer all of your watch’s data to a personal computer is useful for many divers as well, whether it is for recreational or technical purposes.
The only real disadvantage to any Shearwater Research dive computer is the price as it may fall out of the price range for some divers, but the price is not unreasonable as all of the company’s products are premium computers for divers.
Shearwater has perfected a two-button interface for its dive computers that is as simple as it is innovative; whether you’ve used it one or 100 times, a Shearwater device is easily navigable to find all of the information that you need from your dive.
While those who aren’t in need of an advanced dive computer may be better off looking elsewhere, the power and quality of build for Shearwater’s dive computers make them well worth the price tag.