Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison

Last Updated on July 6, 2024 by Steve Weinman

The most recently released Garmin Descent dive-computers represent the third generation of an instrument that combines all the Garmin hiking, swimming GPS, and heart-rate monitoring features with a fully functional dive-computer.

The Mk3i doesn’t disappoint, but many divers are interested in the differences between the Mk2 and Mk3. So I’ve spent some time with an Excel spreadsheet comparing and contrasting the specs of the new Mk3i to the Mk2i. Note that I am comparing only the larger 51mm Mk3i to keep things simple.

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Hardware

Starting at the top, the battery life has been improved from up to 16 to 25 days, which is impressive considering that the Mk3i's body is slightly smaller. 

The diameter is 1mm smaller and just under half a millimetre thinner, but the new Mk3i is about 5g heavier. This extended battery life is likely the result of clever energy efficiency settings.

The screen is the first big change: Garmin has replaced the MIP display with a better AMOLED screen that also features touch capabilities. The resolution has improved from 280×280 to 454×454 pixels. 

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Improved resolution

The Mk3 has a Red-Shift mode that changes the screen information to shades of red to preserve night vision. If you prefer not to go full red, there’s Night Vision mode, which reduces backlight intensity for compatibility with night-vision goggles. 

A separate LED flashlight is included for emergencies, offering variable brightness and an SOS strobe for use in and out of the water. However, it’s important to use it sparingly to conserve battery life. The rear cover has been upgraded from metal to titanium, and the buttons are now leakproof inductive.

Diving features

The Mk3i has doubled its depth rating from 100m to 200m, making it more appealing to technical divers. It can pair with up to eight transmitters, compared to five on the Mk2i. 

The big changes include SubWave sonar-based messaging to send pre-loaded messages to other divers within a 30m range. You can also monitor other divers’ tank pressure and depth when they’re close enough to be part of your SubWave sonar data network.

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Messaging function

Diveview, with contoured depth maps including dive-site locations, is another feature that works only on the surface. 

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Diveview
Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Dive-site tracking

The Dive-Readiness tool, powered by Firstbeat Analytics, provides insights into how physically prepared you are for your next dive based on recent sleep history, residual fatigue, daily stress and physical activity. This feature helps you to make better-informed dive-planning decisions.

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Dive-Readiness

The Mk3i also includes a dive variometer that provides haptic and/or audible feedback to freedivers based on their vertical speed. The variometer pulses and/or beeps at specified depth intervals, helping freedivers maintain a constant rate during descent and ascent.

Surface features

There are numerous new surface features on the Mk3 as well. The Health Snapshot and Jet Lag Advisor offer recommendations on when to seek or avoid light, when to sleep, and when to be active to help recover from time-zone shifts.

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Heart-rate

The Morning Report summarises your vitals and local weather each day, and real-time settings sync with Garmin Connect Mobile, so you don’t need to set up and pair your phone with the Mk3.

The Incident Detection Alert can send your location information to emergency contacts if the Mk3 detects that you’ve been involved in an incident. The on-device Connect IQ Store allows you to browse and download apps directly from your watch. 

Android users can now view images from notifications on the watch, a feature that was text-only on the Mk2.

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison
Compass

New sports modes include motor sports, team sports and, in the ring, along with HIIT workouts and on-screen work-out muscle maps. The race glance/widget provides HRV status and race predictions specific to the course and weather conditions. Nextfork Navigation informs you of upcoming turns and forks on your current path.

Conclusion

The main updates that interest me are the new screen, the 200m depth rating, the leak-proof buttons, in-water communications, the Dive-Readiness tool and the improved dive-location maps, along with the better battery life. 

However, some issues from previous models remain, such as the easy-to-scratch black coating and the beeping noise from the sonar transmitter.

Garmin Mk3i / Mk2i upgrades comparison

Despite its high price, the Garmin Descent Mk3i offers a range of advanced features that make it a unique piece of equipment worth saving up for. What do you think about the Descent Mk3i? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below and visit retail giant Scuba.com if you’re interested in investing in one. Safe diving!

Also on Divernet: GARMIN DESCENT MK3I TO KEEP DIVERS CONNECTED

@stanleysadventres
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The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.

@stanleysadventres
#AskMark What are some things you wish you wish you found out before you started diving?

#scuba #scubadiving #scubadiver
LINKS

Become a fan: https://www.scubadivermag.com/join
Gear Purchases: https://www.scubadivermag.com/affiliate/dive-gear
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OUR WEBSITES

Website: https://www.scubadivermag.com ➡️ Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Scuba Gear Reviews
Website: https://www.divernet.com ➡️ Scuba News, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Travel Reports
Website: https://www.godivingshow.com ➡️ The Only Dive Show in the United Kingdom
Website: https://www.rorkmedia.com ➡️ For advertising within our brands
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FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/scubadivermag
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We partner with https://www.scuba.com and https://www.mikesdivestore.com for all your gear essentials. Consider using the affiliate link above to support the channel.

The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.

YouTube Video UEw2X2VCMS1KYWdWbXFQSGV1YW84WVRHb2pFNkl3WlRSZS41MkJFMDEwMDIxMkRDREQ3

What Do You Wish You Knew Now When You Started Diving? #askmark

@jaketarren
#askmark, Heyo! Longtime listener, first time caller, etc. Went with a BP/W for my first set and I'm having a really hard time keeping the power inflator on my shoulder; the corrugated hose keeps flipping off my shoulder and getting twisted up or just ending up behind the backplate and dangling down the back of the wing. Is there something I can add to my harness to keep it in place? I don't want to tie it to the D ring since I wouldn't be able to lift it to deflate. I'm using the cheap DGX Gears wing for reference. Thanks!

#scuba #scubadiving #scubadiver
LINKS

Become a fan: https://www.scubadivermag.com/join
Gear Purchases: https://www.scubadivermag.com/affiliate/dive-gear 
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OUR WEBSITES

Website: https://www.scubadivermag.com ➡️ Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Scuba Gear Reviews
Website: https://www.divernet.com ➡️ Scuba News, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Travel Reports
Website: https://www.godivingshow.com ➡️ The Only Dive Show in the United Kingdom
Website: https://www.rorkmedia.com ➡️ For advertising within our brands
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FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/scubadivermag
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We partner with https://www.scuba.com and https://www.mikesdivestore.com for all your gear essentials. Consider using the affiliate link above to support the channel.

The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.

@jaketarren
#askmark, Heyo! Longtime listener, first time caller, etc. Went with a BP/W for my first set and I'm having a really hard time keeping the power inflator on my shoulder; the corrugated hose keeps flipping off my shoulder and getting twisted up or just ending up behind the backplate and dangling down the back of the wing. Is there something I can add to my harness to keep it in place? I don't want to tie it to the D ring since I wouldn't be able to lift it to deflate. I'm using the cheap DGX Gears wing for reference. Thanks!

#scuba #scubadiving #scubadiver
LINKS

Become a fan: https://www.scubadivermag.com/join
Gear Purchases: https://www.scubadivermag.com/affiliate/dive-gear
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
OUR WEBSITES

Website: https://www.scubadivermag.com ➡️ Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Scuba Gear Reviews
Website: https://www.divernet.com ➡️ Scuba News, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Travel Reports
Website: https://www.godivingshow.com ➡️ The Only Dive Show in the United Kingdom
Website: https://www.rorkmedia.com ➡️ For advertising within our brands
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/scubadivermag
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/scubadivermag
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/scubadivermagazine

We partner with https://www.scuba.com and https://www.mikesdivestore.com for all your gear essentials. Consider using the affiliate link above to support the channel.

The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.

YouTube Video UEw2X2VCMS1KYWdWbXFQSGV1YW84WVRHb2pFNkl3WlRSZS4xODVDRjcwQzY3NkIxNjYz

How Do You Keep Your Corrugated BCD Hose in Place? #askmark

#scuba #scubadiving #scubadiver
LINKS
Ear Treatments at Scuba.com:
https://imp.i302817.net/Mm9qL3

Become a fan: https://www.scubadivermag.com/join
Gear Purchases: https://www.scubadivermag.com/affiliate/dive-gear 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
OUR WEBSITES

Website: https://www.scubadivermag.com ➡️ Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Scuba Gear Reviews
Website: https://www.divernet.com ➡️ Scuba News, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Travel Reports
Website: https://www.godivingshow.com ➡️ The Only Dive Show in the United Kingdom
Website: https://www.rorkmedia.com ➡️ For advertising within our brands
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/scubadivermag
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/scubadivermag
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/scubadivermagazine

We partner with https://www.scuba.com and https://www.mikesdivestore.com for all your gear essentials. Consider using the affiliate link above to support the channel.

The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.
00:00 Introduction
01:17 Ears
05:13 Scuba.com
06:05 Hydrate
08:12 Clean

#scuba #scubadiving #scubadiver
LINKS
Ear Treatments at Scuba.com:
https://imp.i302817.net/Mm9qL3

Become a fan: https://www.scubadivermag.com/join
Gear Purchases: https://www.scubadivermag.com/affiliate/dive-gear
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
OUR WEBSITES

Website: https://www.scubadivermag.com ➡️ Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Scuba Gear Reviews
Website: https://www.divernet.com ➡️ Scuba News, Underwater Photography, Hints & Advice, Travel Reports
Website: https://www.godivingshow.com ➡️ The Only Dive Show in the United Kingdom
Website: https://www.rorkmedia.com ➡️ For advertising within our brands
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/scubadivermag
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/scubadivermag
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/scubadivermagazine

We partner with https://www.scuba.com and https://www.mikesdivestore.com for all your gear essentials. Consider using the affiliate link above to support the channel.

The information in this video is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional SCUBA Training. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained in this video is for general information purposes only and does not replace training from a qualified Dive Instructor.
00:00 Introduction
01:17 Ears
05:13 Scuba.com
06:05 Hydrate
08:12 Clean

YouTube Video UEw2X2VCMS1KYWdWbXFQSGV1YW84WVRHb2pFNkl3WlRSZS42QTlDMjkyRjNGMEYwQzcz

Post Dive Body Care #scuba #howto

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