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SNORKELING BUYERS GUIDE

Snorkeling is a great sport. It provides a peek into the underwater realm, where the water is warm and clear and colorful sea life flourishes. It’s fun, it’s easy, and it’s a portal into the even more exciting world of scuba diving.

But before you can make the jump into snorkeling, you need to outfit yourself with an ultra-comfortable mask and an easy-breathing snorkel. Nobody offers a better selection of quality masks and snorkels than SCUBAPRO. Even better, all of the SCUBAPRO masks and snorkels mentioned here can be used for scuba diving as well as snorkeling, so if you decide to make the leap to scuba, you’ll already have a quality mask and snorkel that will get the job done.

MASKS

With SCUBAPRO masks, you dive clear-eyed and comfortable.

Essential to the success of any snorkeling or scuba adventure, a superior mask must provide an expansive field of view, it must keep water out, and most of all, it must be comfortable.

MASK TYPES
SCUBAPRO offers masks in a wide range of styles. All are made with high-quality silicone, tempered glass lenses, and offer features designed to enhance the snorkeling or scuba experience. When considering which mask to choose, first consider the lens design.

Single Lens Masks

A mask with a large single lens offers an expansive view of the underwater world. The absence of a center nose bridge allows for uninterrupted viewing, and when looking slightly off-center enables you to maintain binocular vision, a real plus for some snorkelers.

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Dual Lens Masks

Dual – or twin – lens masks have two individual lenses rather one large lens. Because of this, lenses are able to be positioned closer to the eyes; this increases peripheral vision while decreasing internal volume, making the mask easier to clear. Dual-lens masks are also well-suited to prescription lenses.

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Tri Lens Masks

By adding side windows to the main single lens of the mask, more light is allowed in, creating an open, airy feel while increasing peripheral vision.

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In addition to lens design, there are a number of other factors you should consider when choosing a mask.

MASK SKIRTS

All SCUBAPRO mask skirts are made from high-quality silicone and provide a comfortable, watertight seal. However, some SCUBAPRO masks take it a step further, incorporating an exclusive skirt technology called Trufit technology that molds the skirt to your face for the most comfortable fit you’ll ever experience in a diving or snorkeling mask. Trufit technology mask skirts are identifiable by their unique ribbing texture.

Skirt Color

The color of a mask skirt also deserves consideration. Black skirts, or skirts in solid colors, block out distracting light and reflections and reduce glare. This makes them popular among photographers, hunters and divers and snorkelers with light-sensitive eyes. Clear skirts, on the other hand, let in lots of light, creating a more open effect, and if the skirt is transparent, can actually expand field of view. Divers and snorkelers prone to mask claustrophobia or who dive in darker water tend to favor clear skirts.

Virtually all SCUBAPRO masks are available in a choice of black or clear skirts. Some masks, like the Trinidad 3, offer skirts in a variety of other colors.

Synergy 2 Trufit Technology

The newest generation of Trufit technology features two separate silicone skirts. The main inner skirt is thin and soft to provide the best possible fit, seal and comfort against the skin. The outer skirt is thicker to provide support and rigidity near the mask frame. Masks with Synergy 2 Trufit Technology have been called the most comfortable dive masks on the market.

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Frameless Masks

A frameless mask eliminates the thick plastic frame and attaches the buckles directly to the mask skirt. In addition to making the mask lighter overall, this design brings the lens in even closer to your eyes, increasing field of vision while reducing volume, which makes it easier to clear. Having the buckles attached to the skirt rather than to a frame also enables the mask to be folded flat for packing or stowing.

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MASK SIZES

Not every snorkeler or scuba diver can wear a full-sized mask. That’s why SCUBAPRO offers a number of models in scaled-down versions to cater to small or narrow faces.

Conversely, some snorkelers and divers need some extra sizing. The Frameless Gorilla, for example, has a slightly larger and wider lens, and a slightly larger skirt than the original Frameless mask. Also, the D-Mask is available with a wider-than-average skirt (along with a narrower-than-average skirt) to accommodate divers with special sizing needs.

PURGE VALVES

The one-way purge valve is a handy feature for divers who suffer from perennial mask leaks. Located at the base of the nose pocket, a purge valve makes it easy to clear water from a mask – all you have to do is exhale through your nose. SCUBAPRO’s Crystal Vu Plus tri lens mask is available with a purge valve.

INTERCHANGEABLE LENSES

Statistics show that more than 50 percent of people over the age of 18 need glasses, so it follows that there are plenty of snorkelers and scuba divers who would benefit from corrective lenses in their masks. SCUBAPRO offers optional optical lenses for the Flux Twin, Zoom and D-Mask. For the Flux Twin it is recommended that lens changes be done by a dealer; however, with the Zoom and D-Mask you can change out the lenses yourself.

Mirrored Lens

Finally, if your eyes are particularly sensitive to sunlight you might consider mirrored lenses. The mirrored lens option delivers a glare-free view of the underwater world.

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SNORKELS

With SCUBAPRO snorkels you can always breathe easy.

A good snorkel is an integral part of any snorkeling kit. It enables you to breathe easy as you keep your eyes on the underwater prize while swimming along on the surface, without having to constantly lift your head to grab another gulp of air. However, a snorkel can be useful for a scuba diver too. For beach divers, a snorkel makes those long kicks out to the dive site a lot easier while conserving your air supply for the actual trip under water. For boat divers, having a snorkel makes those surface floats much more comfortable as you wait for the dive boat to come pick you up.

SCUBAPRO snorkels are hydro-dynamically designed for exceptional breathing performance.

*Many include flexible sections, especially useful for scuba divers because they allow the mouthpieces to hang out of the way when breathing off a scuba regulator.

*Most offer one-way purge valves positioned just below the mouthpiece. This makes clearing a snorkel much easier, because rather than having to force unwanted water out the top of the tube with a massive blast of air, you can expel it out the bottom of the tube using gravity and just a puff of air.

*Some are foldable, enabling them to be stowed in an accessory pocket when not being used.

*All offer some kind of clip that enables you to attach the snorkel to your mask strap.

*All have specially-designed silicone mouthpieces for maximum comfort.

The SCUBAPRO snorkels mentioned here are ideal for both snorkeling and scuba diving. But first you have to choose which type of snorkel best suits your snorkeling or scuba needs.

Dry Top Snorkels

This snorkel design completely seals the upper tube when the snorkel is submerged, so upon resurfacing no clearing is needed.

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Semi Dry Snorkels

This design’s splashguard top limits the amount of water able to enter the airway, making it easier to clear the snorkel.

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Open Top Snorkels

This is the traditional “J” design with a bare upper tube. The lack of a top piece or purge valve keeps this snorkel design simple and streamlined.

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