Okay, I’ll be honest, my wife won this device in a raffle. I was not even sure what it was. After only a few dives, the Sensus Pro is now a very important part of my dive gear bag. And I wear it on every dive. She wants it back, and we’ll be purchasing another one soon.

In the simplest terms the Sensus Pro is a “Black Box” for divers. Much as a “black box” on an airplane records important data during a flight, the Sensus Pro records important information during a dive easily retrieved for later viewing. You get, both in graph and raw data form, descent rate, depths, ascent rate, and temperature—all recorded at 10-second intervals. It is an excellent dive log tool recording date and time as well.

But many dive computers have downloadable information. What makes this device so special? First, if you do not have a dive computer that is downloadable to a PC, the Sensus Pro will fill the gap. Not all dive computers are downloadable, especially many older models. My wife owns an older dive computer she loves for its simplicity, but you can’t download the data. Some dive computers may be downloadable, but the interface is difficult and hard to understand and operate. And if you are a Mac OS user, no dive computers will interface. The Sensus Pro interfaces with Windows, Palm OS, Mac OS9 and Mac OS X.

The Sensus Pro is NOT a dive computer. It is simply a dive data recorder. As such, it has no buttons, displays, dials or settings to contend with— and it is very inexpensive—only $115 for the unit and reader module. You’ll also need the proper serial port to USB adapter with the correct driver (Reef Net sells it for $25). There are no moving parts (it is water activated) and contains a permanent lithium coil cell giving a life of 10 years. It can store 100 hours of dive data and is depth rated to 500 feet. And very important is its small size—about the size of my big toe! You can wear it on your dive gear all the time in an out-of-the-way place and never even notice it. I see this as potentially useful for free-divers as well.

The four main strengths I found about this device for me personally were: 1) I finally have dive data that I can download to my beloved Mac, 2) I hate keeping dive logs; this helps a lot, 3) I can analyze the strengths and weaknesses in my diving [Example: I suspected I had a problem with a slightly rapid ascent rate and this confirmed it. And I have been consistently slightly too shallow on my safety stops, something I did not know.], and 4) I have a recorded log of my dives when I am diving my old favorite (but undownloadable) dive computer. Should I ever get in trouble, the local chamber can download the data from my Sensus Pro.

Even if you have a downloadable dive computer, this is an inexpensive method of backing up your data.

For more information, the Sensus Pro dive data recorder call 1-888-819-REEF or visit their web site at http://www.reefnet.on.ca