Dive Computer Expert Reviews
Saving Your Precious Time And Finding The Best Dive Computer For You
Dive computer reviews are perfectly organized and consist of fully researched information and ratings of Aeris, Cressi, Mares, Oceanic, Sherwood, Suunto, Tusa, and UWATEC/ScubaPro brands. In Catalogue Section you may compare any models side-by-side and select dive computer according to your needs! Join thousands of happy customers!
Suunto was always considered to be a brand that set exemplary standards for dive computers. And one vivid example to support this statement is D6 scuba dive computer!
Suunto D6 is an advanced instrument that allows us to set dual Nitrox gas mix and use it for recreational technical diving. It may be recommended dive computer for guys who have all necessary certifications for that kind of diving and to those beginners who are serious to take a step further in their diving career.
So, let’s discover what is so special about Suunto D6. And why it is considered to be one of the best dive computers in our market these days.
Learning briefly about main features and characteristics of D6, we may say that D6 is younger brother (or sister, whatever you like!) of Suunto D9. These two dive computers have many similar functions, except few differences, listed below:
Last 4 functions are obviously absent in D6 because of non-existent air-integration!
Copy this Suunto D6 Features & Alarms Card for your Reference and Share with your friends and buddies!
Suunto D6 has 4 control buttons on the user interface panel: MODE, SELECT, UP, DOWN. Using them it is very easy to select any function and set up desirable parameters – no strange combinations, but in any case you need to spend quite some time with manuals learning how to get most of this dive computer.
D6 has only Ascent Rate Bar Graph located on the right side of display in contrast to D9 that has 2 bar graphs – Tank Pressure and Ascent Rate Bar Graphs.
Since this dive computer has digital watch functions at full extent – the first thing we will want to do is to set up our digital watch!
Suunto D6 is very easy to set - just need to play with buttons a bit and read manuals – no problems at all!
You will be able to set following values:
Next – you will, probably, move to Compass sub-mode and calibrate this thing. You may call up Compass during diving or on surface.
Now it is time to customize our Suunto D6 dive computer more. Each sub-mode of Dive Mode, whether it is Air, Nitrox, or Gauge allows you to adjust only those parameters, which are typical for particular sub-mode.
For example, you won’t be able to access settings for nitrox dive if you selected Gauge mode. But many of settings are shared between sub-modes, like Depth and Dive Time alarms, Personal and Altitude programs, Safety and Deep Stops, and some others.
Below is a list of what you may set at this stage:
If you set Deep Stop function to OFF – you will have Safety Stops displayed during a dive – Recommended and Mandatory Safety Stop. You may miss Recommended Safety Stop – no any penalties for that, but you have to complete Mandatory Safety Stop, or you will get shorter No-Decompression Time during next dive.
Mandatory Safety Stop is activated when your ascent is greater than allowed. And to prevent creation of microbubbles in greater levels – RGBM responds by giving you a Mandatory Safety Stop.
If you set Deep Stop to ON – you won’t have Recommended Safety Stop prompt, but you may still have Mandatory Safety Stop upon reaching certain conditions and Deep Stop prompts. Deep Stop is a safety stop too, but it happens in greater depth, deeper than traditional safety stops occur. And you will be able to set duration of the Deep Stop for 1 or 2 minutes.
Before diving it is recommended that you activate Dive mode in order for D6 to do some pre-checks. Actually, it’s a good practice – do pre-checks before diving!
Suunto D6: Diving With Air & Nitrox
Copy this Suunto D6 NO-DECO Card for your Reference and Share with your friends and buddies!
You can view all information by using UP/DOWN buttons to move between the screens. You can create a bookmark in you diving profile – it will be saved in dive computer memory for further viewing and downloading to PC.
During No-Decompression dive you may have either Safety Stops or Deep Stops remainder, according to the setting you have chosen before. Stop depths and times, and all applicable icons will be displayed to help you to manage those situations. As I said above, you may miss Recommended Safety Stop, but you have to complete Mandatory Safety Stop.
If you are ascending faster continuously – you will definitely increasing possibility of injury. So, to avoid unpleasant and painful moments during your diving trip – please follow good diving practices guidelines! Because hour in Decompression Chamber costs quite a high price, but your health is much dearer!
If during a dive you need to access digital compass – just press and hold SELECT button for more than 2 seconds. You can call up compass at any dive mode and on surface. Just to be sure that it’s calibrated correctly!
When you set D6 for diving with Nitrox, dive computer would give you number of available functions to adjust for this type of diving.
Probably you already know that calculation of maximum operational depth (MOD) is based on FO2 and PO2 values that you entered.
During this type of dive you will be presented with data that similar to what you can get during diving with Air, and as an addition to it, D6 will display following values that are special for Nitrox dive:
Changing gas mixes during a dive is a very easy procedure – by using UP or DOWN buttons we select desirable gas mix; after that – press button SELECT, and Suunto D6 dive computer sets the mix that you selected and will start all calculations according to the settings of this gas mix.
If you exceed your No-Decompression Limits (NDLs) – Suunto computer activates Decompression mode. All data that you will get after that is related to this mode. During decompression you will be prompted to complete one or few decompression stops at a range of depths.
Suunto D6 dive computer has Continuous Decompression feature that allows us to perform decompression within the certain range of depths, so called Decompression range. It starts from the ‘floor’ (deepest depth where deco stop time won’t increase) to the ‘ceiling’ (shallowest depth) and decompression is done between them.
This Suunto computer manages decompression perfectly by displaying following data:
If you, by some reason, ascend above the ceiling, D6 would give you an audio alarm with corresponding icons, your current depth and ceiling depth values, and Error mark. It means that you have only 3 minutes to correct you position and go deeper to ceiling depth displayed or a bit below.
Suunto D6: Diving In GAUGE Mode
When you set Suunto D6 dive computer as a Gauge, it will work as a depth gauge and timer only and won’t perform any calculations for nitrogen or oxygen absorption. You may use D6 for freediving as well in a Gauge Mode.
In Gauge Mode this Suunto dive computer will display following data:
When Suunto D6 senses 1.2 meters depth or less – it will change Dive display to Surface display and it will show you data related to last dive, like:
On surface you may access Memory Mode. It is the third operational mode of Suunto D6 dive computer and this mode and its sub-modes are similar to Suunto D9. This mode has 3 sub-modes:
Below you will find brief descriptions each of these sub-modes.
MEMplan allows you to see your next No-Decompression times for particular depths for your next dive, taking into consideration any residual nitrogen you may have from previous dives.
MEMlog stores in memory logs, bookmarks and profiles of approximately 36 hours of dives and its capacity depends on sampling rate that you set. Sampling rate is factory preset for 20 seconds for profiling, but you may set it for 1/10/20/30/60 seconds.
MEMhis records and stores a dive history for up to 999 dives and 999 diving hours. It displays data about deepest depth reached, total dive hours and total number of dives.
One more word about Suunto Dive Manager (SDM).
Suunto D6: What Divers Say
How to describe Suunto D6?
Many functions are the same as Suunto D9 has, except those, which have something to do with air-integration – you may see it in our comparison chart.
During test dives we were very pleased with performance of this dive computer - very easy readable display, easy to change mix, perfect Deep Stops and DECO mode management.
The biggest inconvenience - NO user replaceable battery, and to change it - you need to send D6 to Suunto authorized dealer. But this is only one complaint, and nothing else!
So, if you are a beginner or experienced diver and do not want or can’t afford to spend few hundred bucks more for air-integration (or maybe you just do not need air-integration at all), but love Suunto range of dive computers, and don't ming sending it every time for battery replacement – try Suunto D6. You will never go wrong with this Suunto dive computer!