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Anyone using the Garmin Descent G1?

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DiveHacker

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Jun 17, 2020
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I was wondering if any spearos had a report on how this watch functions. It may seem like overkill for a spearo only but it’s competitively priced with similar build quality suunto etc as far as I can tel.
 
vrokhlenko

vrokhlenko

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Sep 22, 2002
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Lost my computer this year on Azores. Cost me $200 shipped from Europe, the USA price was $450. Had buttons failed on it, so machined them from titanium and epoxied magnets inside. Put in a lot of labor. What a devastation. Catching my drift? Unless you are rich, stay away from the overpriced stuff. But I looked into garmin - it has all the function for spearo which is a dive time, depth, surface interval, temperature. So do ALL freediving computers starting from $90 on DiveInn. I ended up buying Crest CR4. It is rebranded under many names and was used heavily in Eastern Europe with a good feedback. You can get it close to $200 USD in South East Asia
 
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DiveHacker

Active Member
Jun 17, 2020
172
73
43
49
Lost my computer this year on Azores. Cost me $200 shipped from Europe, the USA price was $450. Had buttons failed on it, so machined them from titanium and epoxied magnets inside. Put in a lot of labor. What a devastation. Catching my drift? Unless you are rich, stay away from the overpriced stuff. But I looked into garmin - it has all the function for spearo which is a dive time, depth, surface interval, temperature. So do ALL freediving computers starting from $90 on DiveInn. I ended up buying Crest CR4. It is rebranded under many names and was used heavily in Eastern Europe with a good feedback. You can get it close to $200 USD in South East Asia
Yeah but here’s the thing. I have a seac driver. I think it’ll last maybe another year if I’m lucky. I like it no problem. The Garmin has a gps in it, surface interval of course… full freedive watch… tracks your heart rate which I’d find useful on land doing breathing exercises. A compass (there’s another thread on people getting lost in fog). And… holding one I’m bettering it outlasts my seac 3-4x.

so it’s probably worth it price wise and you’d be getting a ton of extra functionality.
 
vrokhlenko

vrokhlenko

Well-Known Member
Sep 22, 2002
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Yeah but here’s the thing. I have a seac driver. I think it’ll last maybe another year if I’m lucky. I like it no problem. The Garmin has a gps in it, surface interval of course… full freedive watch… tracks your heart rate which I’d find useful on land doing breathing exercises. A compass (there’s another thread on people getting lost in fog). And… holding one I’m bettering it outlasts my seac 3-4x.

so it’s probably worth it price wise and you’d be getting a ton of extra functionality.
Well, I looked into Seac and I had a gut feeling it was a piece of crap. They are too cheap. Compass could be useful, GPS does not work under water. I have a three dollar sealed compass that I can keep on my float if I want to but I hunt at the places that neither GPS nor compass is not needed. So it looks like your mind is all set - you are going for it. I would at least wait half a year to get reports of longevity and such. Also look into Crest CR5 - it also has a GPS. Presently $500 but might be cheaper in South East Asia. It is cheaper predecessor CR4 has been rebranded and used a lot by spearos with good reviews. Another company to investigate is Atmos. Atmos and Crest are Taiwan - based.
Also - what you do not want is to push buttons in the water wearing gloves. So a simple magnetic compass that is always on is better than the electronic one in Garmin. Also I expect that Garmin compass might even be GPS - based. Which means it determines direction accurately ONLY when you move. I wrote an Android software that prevents you from getting lost - so I know that those sensors are not very accurate.
 
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DiveHacker

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Jun 17, 2020
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Well, I looked into Seac and I had a gut feeling it was a piece of crap. They are too cheap. Compass could be useful, GPS does not work under water. I have a three dollar sealed compass that I can keep on my float if I want to but I hunt at the places that neither GPS nor compass is not needed. So it looks like your mind is all set - you are going for it. I would at least wait half a year to get reports of longevity and such. Also look into Crest CR5 - it also has a GPS. Presently $500 but might be cheaper in South East Asia. It is cheaper predecessor CR4 has been rebranded and used a lot by spearos with good reviews. Another company to investigate is Atmos. Atmos and Crest are Taiwan - based.
Also - what you do not want is to push buttons in the water wearing gloves. So a simple magnetic compass that is always on is better than the electronic one in Garmin. Also I expect that Garmin compass might even be GPS - based. Which means it determines direction accurately ONLY when you move. I wrote an Android software that prevents you from getting lost - so I know that those sensors are not very accurate.
The descent g1 is around $500 too tho. I totally agree with those older descents above the 1000 dollar mark. Does not seem worth it. But yeah maybe u knoe the g1 is 500 and you’re right. Only time will tell. It seems light yet solid to me though. My seac buttons are not the best and after about a year one of the buttons just stays pushed in but it still operates.
and yes always a real compass on small boat or even float out to sea, I think that is a great idea.

the crest cr5 looks good.
 
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vrokhlenko

vrokhlenko

Well-Known Member
Sep 22, 2002
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Dive computer buttons are fun. There are essentially two major types - the ones that are connected to the internals via a push rod and thus have to have an o-ring to prevent water leakage. That is why on some cheaper computers they warn not to push buttons under water! Another type is magnetic - a magnet inside the button triggers an electric commutation inside the watch. They are not connected to the internals of the watch and thus do not present a leak issue whatsoever. But the magnets themselves corrode easily so the magnet inside the button must be insulated with epoxy, glue or whatever from the water. These buttons are spring-loaded - there is a tiny spring that sits between the body of the watch and a button in a cavity. So this spring can rust as well. A lot of computers with the magnetic buttons have issues - magnets just disintegrate people throw these computers away. Which is a shame - all damage is done OUTSIDE the computer body INSIDE the button. I figured out how to make buttons for Sporasub SP1/Sporasub SP2/Omer Mistral/Omer Omr-1/Omer Umberto Pelizzari - they are derivatives of the infamous Pyle dive watch that is dirt-cheap (see attachment) but does not have a surface interval time. I figured out what magnets need to be used and how to make buttons. It was a fun project but it went to waste since I lost the watch. But if I ever get my hands on the one with the "frozen" buttons - I know what to do.
 

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DiveHacker

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You’re right about maybe my mind being set. I did look at those other options. The atmos seems nice too.

I bought a Garmin gps when gps was first made available to public decades ago. It lasted until I lost it. I have two Garmin car gps. Both never failed after years of use. One I think is ten years old. I use it when I travel and drive overseas.

I think Garmin is one of the few larger corporations to trust with build is my point. there’s so much crap and cutting corners out there it’s difficult. But yeah only time will tell for sure.

I do like how the seac driver rounds up your dive time and gives you a conservative 2x COUNTDOWN. But no dive time displayed on surface, which is very annoying.

From what I can tell the Garmin is like other dive watches in that it tells you down time and counts your surface interval. I dont like the thought of doing math in my head when on surface.
 
vrokhlenko

vrokhlenko

Well-Known Member
Sep 22, 2002
301
78
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You’re right about maybe my mind being set. I did look at those other options. The atmos seems nice too.

I bought a Garmin gps when gps was first made available to public decades ago. It lasted until I lost it. I have two Garmin car gps. Both never failed after years of use. One I think is ten years old. I use it when I travel and drive overseas.

I think Garmin is one of the few larger corporations to trust with build is my point. there’s so much crap and cutting corners out there it’s difficult. But yeah only time will tell for sure.

I do like how the seac driver rounds up your dive time and gives you a conservative 2x COUNTDOWN. But no dive time displayed on surface, which is very annoying.

From what I can tell the Garmin is like other dive watches in that it tells you down time and counts your surface interval. I dont like the thought of doing math in my head when on surface.
I also have a Garmin Epix GPS watch from 2015 - the older one with the "breadcrumb" feature - as you travel on land or water it collects the points you have visited and overlays it on the map as a path. I get lost easily - so I needed that. Because it was small and crappy I developed my own mobile app that has the same feature. GPS acquisition signal is not the best on this watch, the touchscreen is not responsive and the map is barely readable unless there is a direct light hitting it, the battery life is short. But I got it DEEPLY discounted so I do not feel I was screwed over :) It indeed feels like a premium construction but its MSRP was $400.
On my last watch it was no dive time displayed on a surface either as far as I remember. But I did not care - when I hunt these days I am rarely down for more than 90 seconds. I am getting old and have no buddy so I am extremely conservative under water.
 
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