Scuba divers whose eyesight is less than 20/20 usually have to splash out on a dive-mask with prescription lenses.
SeeDeep glasses are not yet in production but the idea is that long-sighted divers can put them on or take them off under water for close-up vision, just as would happen with reading glasses topside. They will fit over the top of any style of dive-mask, according to inventor Jos Groeneveld, and are held in place with an adjustable rubber strap.
The metal-framed lenses are made of hard-wearing polycarbonate with an anti-scratch coating, and the user can choose from four diopters: +1, +1.5, +2 and +2.5.
The glasses can be moved up and down on the dive-mask during a dive, depending on whether the diver wants to peer down at an instrument or up at a pygmy seahorse. An adhesive silicone surface applied to two soft pads on the reverse of the glasses secures them in the diver’s chosen position through friction, says SeeDeep. Patents are pending on this process.
The glasses can be taken off altogether once no longer needed on the dive, such as when the diver pulls away from a reef, and at that point can be deposited in a soft neoprene case attached to the diver by a karabiner.
What happens when you need to clear your mask? “First take the glasses off your mask (and put them in the softcase) and then clear your mask the usual way,” Groeneveld told Divernet patiently – so best ensure that you don’t have a leaky mask.
Groeneveld and designer Bas Millenaart make up the SeeDeep Diving Optics start-up team based in Gouda in the Netherlands, and they have just started crowd-funding their dive glasses on Indiegogo, with a long way to go but hoping to go into full production in August 2024.
Projected price is £59 for a pair of the standard glasses, framed in hard-coated anodised aluminium in anthracite grey or blue. There would also be a “premium edition” in stainless steel (£75) and an “exclusive edition” in titanium (£119).
All models come with the neoprene case, while the special editions will also have a hard case for use on the dive-boat and while travelling.