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Talking Underwater with a Full Face Mask

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by WreckDiver1692, Oct 22, 2019.

  1. WreckDiver1692

    WreckDiver1692 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    24
    1
    3
    My partner and I are interested in being able to talk to each other underwater. For those of you who have experience with various systems which allow this, do you have any thoughts and/or recommendations?

    It seems there are 2 primary options for consumers (and a few other lesser established options):
    1. Ocean Reef GSM G.DIVERS
    2. OTS Buddy Phone
    The Ocean Reef base product ("GSM G.DIVERS") can be purchased with the Neptune FFM for about 60% of the price of the OTS Buddy Phone/Guardian FFM package, though the Buddy Phone seems to possibly edge out the Ocean Reef product in terms of features slightly (continuous transmission, multiple channels, etc.) but I'm more curious about face masks and how they compare. Even if you don't have experience with communication systems, do any of you have any thoughts as to which FFM are the best in terms of easiest to use, best features, doesn't fog up because the air flows up past the eyes first before going to the mouth, etc.


    See also:
    Let's Talk About Underwater Communications Systems (alt)
    3 Types of Underwater Communication for SCUBA Divers
     
  2. Hoyden

    Hoyden Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Rockville, MD
    921
    86
    28
    I have used, serviced, and instructed a wide variety full face masks and we use them daily at my work. We have settled on the Guardian Full Face mask. We use their wired comms in-house, but I have a couple set up with wireless (Buddy phones) for open water diving. I cannot recommend these highly enough. We switched to the Guardians (we have 14 plus my two personal ones) from Ocean Reef masks. We found that we could fit more divers with fewer masks and that they are much more robust. I also have an OTS Spectrum and would consider that for personal use. It has a more shallow learning curve, but lacks the easy repair options of the Guardian and the fog free operation (has to be treated like a regular mask). Previous to the Ocean Reefs, we used AGA masks and I have personal experience with the Kirby Morgan M-48s.

    YMMV,

    Jackie

    I would add that I can talk just fine with my buddy underwater in conventional scuba. You may want to try to develop this skill set before investing all of the $$ that two full face masks with comms will cost.
     
  3. WreckDiver1692

    WreckDiver1692 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    24
    1
    3
    Yeah the Guardian seems like it could be nice -- I just didn't wish that setup didn't cost twice the price! Have you ever tried the OTS Neptune?
     
  4. happy-diver

    happy-diver Skindiver Just feelin it ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: same ocean as you
    1,133
    670
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  5. ofg-1

    ofg-1 Course Director

    247
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    What is it you want to talk about? Are you trying underwater karaoke?
     
  6. Hoyden

    Hoyden Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Rockville, MD
    921
    86
    28
    Those were what we replaced with Guardians.
     
  7. WreckDiver1692

    WreckDiver1692 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    24
    1
    3
    We are doing underwater film work.
     
  8. Charles Graves

    Charles Graves Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Washington, DC
    47
    15
    8
    I know I’m probably alone in this, but aside from special circumstances requiring talking and communicating, I think that full face masks are kind of a liability and a joke tbh. But when you need to communicate and talk I suppose they serve a useful purpose
     
  9. RainPilot

    RainPilot completey delusional scientology snowflake Staff Member

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: UAE
    4,000
    3,541
    113
    The KM-48 is probably the easiest to convert to from a regular mask, as you don't need to carry a backup mask, gas share etc is a simpler proposition. The "mask" portion does need to be treated like a regular mask though, but that has not been an issue IME. Most COTS comms systems will work with them. If your film work requires the face to be seen, they will not be optimal but for crew comms they are pretty sweet.
     

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