• Welcome to ScubaBoard

  1. Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

    Benefits of registering include

    • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
    • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
    • You can make this box go away

    Joining is quick and easy. Login or Register now by clicking on the button

Any issues with Panoramic Dive masks ?

Discussion in 'Fins, Masks and Snorkels' started by whaleboy, Jul 11, 2012.

  1. whaleboy

    whaleboy Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Northern California
    I'm looking to buy a Panoramic mask, its just seems logical to have that extra view; of buddy, that rock / corral
    or the fish / mammal, without having to rubber neck your way around the aquatic world.

    Ive tried them in the shop against the standard masks and of course you have a wider field of view.
    Just roll your eyes to the left or right instead of moving the head.
    I'm not overlooking the obvious, for example, to get a closer look at something 90 degrees to the left, just
    a glance to check on buddy location or to use peripheral vision for navigation, etc...

    What brought me to look around at these masks is; Ive noticed the body follows the head, especially after
    viewing video's of me UW, I turn my head to the left and my body rolls slightly left. Then I have to correct with a
    fin kick or body twist. Just seems silly to have a narrower field of view with conventional masks.

    The panoramic masks are not standard equipment for DIR divers, I haven't met anyone who uses one, and most videos and pictures of experienced divers are wearing conventional masks. So... Is there a problem with them ?
  2. danpass

    danpass Barracuda

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Miami, FL
    Do you have an example?

    I use a Mares i3 liquidskin and I like it. It's a 3 panel mask where they've minimized the distortion of the edges where the panels meet, or at least minimized it's effect and there is actually some side view.

    WHAT'S NEW/Mares Liquidskin Mask
  3. g550driver

    g550driver Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Houston, TX

    I too just purchased the i3 mask.. Feels comfortable, did not leak in my pool trials (of course, this is based on my face), and had a great field of vision. I agree, the distortion is minimized.
  4. eelnoraa

    eelnoraa DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Francisco Bay Area
    3 panels mask usually has the front lens further away from your face because of the side lens. A few considerations: 1) larger volumn. If your mask flood, it may take more air (more than one breath) to clear instead of maybe half of a breah with low volumn mask. 2) you gain some side vision, but since the front lens is further, you lose up/down vision.

    I guess when sum up, low volumn ask is still a better choice
  5. whaleboy

    whaleboy Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Northern California
    I compared the field of view of the Mares i3 and the Aqualung LX in the LDS. Since Ive been using a Cressi Matrix since OW, I'm considering the Cressi Panorama.

    ---------- Post Merged at 07:46 PM ---------- Previous Post was at 07:40 PM ----------

    Thanks, my mask is low volume and it takes a lot to pull it loose in river current or surf surges, in fact I haven't dealt with my mask pulling off (yet)
    and you brought up some things to consider.
  6. billt4sf

    billt4sf Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Fayetteville GA, Wash DC, NY, Toronto, SF
  7. spectrum

    spectrum Dive Bum Wannabe ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: The Atlantic Northeast (Maine)
    That is the mask model I have been using since I started in 2004 and I like it, especially for spotting buddies. The side view will not be true but it's good enough to recognize movement or a splash of color. There is also a significant blind spot between the front and side views. Wear the mast and sweep a finger out around in front of you and you will see what I mean. No big deal, just an optical effect.

    The mask is sold under many brands including unbranded models on Ebay usually for about 1/2 that price.

    I have grown fond of the black skirted version.

    Even with this mask I like to roll side to side if I'm really searching for something. With practice you can do so without disturbing your heading.


    Added example:
  8. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    Some of the panoramic masks are actually kinda nice but they have more disadvantages than advantages--for me. The primary one is the increased volume means they do not double well as a free diver mask and simply take more volume to clear and equalize. They do tend to be lost more easily in surf and present a larger area profile in current. The newest low volume, single pane frameless mask, the Atomic Frameless for example, have nearly equal view and are in comparison, very small profile.

    But if you are dead set on one then go for it. Live and learn but in the end I suspect you will not like panoramic masks.

  9. GrumpyOldGuy

    GrumpyOldGuy Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: West Texas/NH/CA
    I have a similar experience to Nemrod, the atomic frame-less low volume mask puts the glass closer to your face to give you an enlarged field of view. The advantage is the field of view is both left to right and up and down (both axis) versus the panoramic which increases left to right a bit more, but nothing up and down. If your horizontal in the water looking forward (up) is more of an issue for me than left/right.

    FWIW: I did try a 3 panel one many years ago, I did not like it, but it was a fit issue more than anything else.
  10. Snorkel Exchange

    Snorkel Exchange Angel Fish

    Like you mentioned, a panoramic mask gives you a wider viewing area. LEGACY & IMPREZA tri-lens panoramic masks offer a three-side window lens connected with a band on where the lenses meet. In older panoramic masks the band that connects the three lenses is rather large and provides a distraction. The new and improved panoramic mask offers an invisible connection between the lenses that eliminates the distraction of a band.

    The larger size also means more volume, which as eelnoraa mentioned, can cause some issues when clearing your mask. Everyone has their preferences; the trick is to find what works best for you.

Share This Page