ITS NOT FUNNY THAT WE OLDER DIVERS so often have to ask the waiter what he recommends, because we can no longer decipher the menu. We end up eating from the chefs great big steaming pot of whatever he couldnt shift the previous day.
Thank goodness some diving-computer manufacturers understand that their best prospects as customers are those that SKI (Spend Kids Inheritance).
I liked the Galileo Sol diving computer from the moment I received it, because there are three screen options. You can have a Full display, a Classic display or a very simplified Light configuration. The less information, the bigger the words and the easier it is to read.
The Light configuration still gives you all the essential information you need to carry out a dive safely, whereas Full tells you when its time for lunch.
The Galileo Sol became one of my favourite computers, but I often forgot to wear the heart-rate monitor that enabled it to dovetail with what my body was actually doing.
Years later, when I remembered to strap it to my chest, I noticed that my heart-rate was going through the roof. This told me that the heart-rate monitor was at the end of its useful life, so I opted out of using it, and carried on.
Nor did I ever get another transmitter for the nitrox integration of a second or third mix during a single dive, so I guess you could accuse me of not using it to its full advantage.
Others presumably went down the same route, because Scubapro-Uwatec has now introduced the Galileo Luna, a simplified unit in that it comes without the heart-rate monitor (though it can be upgraded at a later date) and normally works with a single gas-integrated transmitter.
Like the Sol, the Luna is oil-filled against pressure effects, but has an autonomous air-filled battery compartment. My only real objection to it is its stupendous price.

Three buttons allow you into and around the menu. There may be hundreds of settings, but they are all easily accessed in an agreeable and digestible way. Its so easy. The only setting that may need some explanation is that of MB levels.
During repetitive diving, small bubbles that might form in your body but provide no symptoms of DCI can form the nucleus to which further bubbles might cluster.
Setting a micro-bubble or MB level can protect you against this. You can opt for any of five levels, or turn this facility off (MB0) and revert to the conventional Buhlmann ZH-L8 ADT algorithm.
You can also choose a variety of depths and times for a safety stop, or opt for PDIS. More of that later.

Display Legibility
As I indicated, the dot-matrix display of this computer is probably the most legible of any available, and warnings come up in real words, so you dont have to decipher what the icon of a little man in a wheelchair means!
If you are multilingual, or want to lend your precious computer to someone who doesnt speak English, there is the option of having most European languages, too.
The Sol has a wonderful built-in electronic compass that seems to work at almost any angle, and together with the tank pressure and remaining gas-time prognosis it puts all the data you need in one place - on your wrist.

In The Water
This unit is very straightforward to use. During the dive, it gives all the information you need, plus the depth of the first level stop, which targets micro-bubble formation.
If for some reason you miss this stop, the computer simply defaults to the next MB level. Its a recommendation. You make the mandatory deco stops only when they are indicated.
The Galileo also gives the option of Profile Dependent Intermediate Stops (PDIS). These are indicated as deep stops, but again are more of a recommendation than obligatory.
They are calculated on the fly during the dive, and for a deep dive more than one might be recommended. You can choose to set the PDIS for one or two minutes, and I chose the latter, because it takes your blood about two minutes to circulate around your body.
I did find that after a deep dive I got quite a few PDIS recommendations in very shallow water, and often ascended a little past the point before the two-minute counter was up. It would then say PDIS No, which was annoying, but made no apparent difference to my health.
The counter for the safety stop is huge and unmissable. It even gives a nitrogen tissue-loading graphic display during the dive, should you be interested.
Although the Galileo Luna elicits comments about its size from those divers wearing tiny computer- watches, it is not too big in the water, and straps comfortably onto the wrist.
Planning and Logbook
The Logbook mode not only gives several pages of information, but there is a very clear profile graph recorded of each dive. The dive-planning mode is very easy to understand, and will give you the deco required for any particular dive, including the level stops that might be recommended for that MB level setting.

Suunto Vyper Air £399
Mares Nemo Wide £335

PRICE £759 (Also available without transmitter)
IN-WATER DISPLAY Full, with three display type options
NITROX MANAGEMENT Integrated by radio transmitter
LOGBOOK 100 hours
PC INTERFACE Infra-red/SmartTrak
MODE Nitrox, Gauge, Apnea package as free download
UPGRADE OPTION Predictive multigas and heart-rate.
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