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Garmin Descent MK2i Full Review After 30 Dives


We finally got our hands on the new Garmin Descent MK2i to extensively test. We have the unit for a long term loan, and it arrived just before we headed for our Maldives scuba diving trip.

Check out the first video we did on the Garmin Descent MK2i https://youtu.be/34Or1gkWrws

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Garmin Descent MK2i Full Review
#ScubaDiving #Scuba #Garmin

***** THANK YOU FOR WATCHING *****

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Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
2 years ago

Have you dived the Garmin Descent MK2i? Let us know what you think of it in the comments.

Jacob Alinsky
Jacob Alinsky
Reply to  Scuba Diver Magazine
1 year ago

Been diving with the MK2i over 2 months already. The screen is easy to read underwater. The air integration made my kit complete. I really love the fact that the it pairs with my phone and updates my dive log immediately when it connects over bluetooth. The built in compass saved me time and kept me on target to my destination.

Kat Kat
Kat Kat
1 year ago

I am fascinated by the fact that you benchmarked Garmin with Shearwater. Hahahah I love Shearwater. I’m getting Garmin as a back-up since I am also a runner. I need to know when I can finally do heavy workouts using the no-fly function.

Anyway, Garmin needs to improve upon the AI as it doesn’t read well on mixed gases. We had to recalibrate twice so it would read accurately. In this aspect, Shearwater still owns everything.

Amadeuss
Amadeuss
1 year ago

The chirping of garmin transmitter annoyed living hell out of me.
Returned back, and got Teric.

Tobi
Tobi
1 year ago

sadly the mk2 is available in small and big only. if got the fenix 6 in medium size. i would love to see a new mk3 version, also available in medium size 🙂 (without air integration)

John Martin
John Martin
1 year ago

Some feedback after using the MK2i and T1 over 2 separate holidays

So first trip I had issues with connectivity. The transmitter and DC would pair on the boat but as soon as sonar kicked in I would lose connection.
Sent MK2i and T1 to retailer on my return and Garmin sent a replacement transmitter. The only other issue I had was the start location is missing in my dive logs. This may be due to the fact that I haven’t activated dive mode manually and by the time It automatically kicks in the GOS signal is lost.
Apart from that I loved it!
So just back from Mexico and unlike Maldives where they dive EAN the dive company in Mexico used Air.
No issue diving cenotes T1 stayed connected and referring to one comment in this post there is an audible noise in Sonar but it’s definitely not high pitched and I found it reassuring and soon forgot about it.
The issue this time was when I accompanied my youngest on his advanced course deep dive. My MK2i was set to high conservatism and as soon as you hit sub 10min NDC limit the computer notifies you.
For a 30m dive set at HC NDL is just 9:32!
Even the lowest conservatism gives me just 14.58
Diving on a 32 EAN would allow for 24:49 according to the planning mode.
What’s your thoughts and comparisons to other DCs in relation to available bottom times.

Thanks John

Mohamed Nosseir
Mohamed Nosseir
1 year ago

I ask the heart rate can be changed for algorithm
4 meter tired

Ian Yoxall
Ian Yoxall
1 year ago

First off great review. I’m a cyclist, gym goer, music player, Garmin pay user of the fenix 5 plus and I love it. I lost my old computer in the Bali eruption. Headed back out diving again. Combining the two sounds amazing. But the price is eye watering…

Master of None
Master of None
1 year ago

Will this field phone calls and music ?

Rami Zayed
Rami Zayed
1 year ago

Great review! MK2i seems like a great computer/watch

Isaac Mont
Isaac Mont
1 year ago

Nice review and well done. Now how to figure out how to afford such a neat little device.

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Isaac Mont
1 year ago

Glad it was helpful!

John Mont
John Mont
1 year ago

Nice review.

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  John Mont
1 year ago

Thanks!

atty joey tamayo
atty joey tamayo
1 year ago

SUPERB review .. thats why i got both the PERDIX and the MK2 lol

Alain Robitaille
Alain Robitaille
1 year ago

Good day. I’m looking to replace my Cobra diving computer. I think it is not a friendly piece of equipment to use. But, this Garmin looks fun to use. Can you tell me once it is set for diving, if the computer will activate by itself once it touch water like the Aqualung i300c or you must activate it before you go in? Also, is there a planner available in this Garmin MK2 that show the time and depth available for your next dive? Thanks Alain Montreal, Canada

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Alain Robitaille
1 year ago

Yes, you can plan dives with the Garmin, like most other computers, and yes, it automatically activates once you have it set for diving.

Juhua Liu
Juhua Liu
1 year ago

loved the review. Thank you!

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Juhua Liu
1 year ago

Glad it was useful.

AlexeyDnepr
AlexeyDnepr
2 years ago

MK2i can track your heart rate underwater using a chest strap? The optical sensor on the wrist is inaccurate. In addition, the watch is worn on top of the wetsuit.

Chris Buck
Chris Buck
2 years ago

I’m currently looking at the Garmin mk2I for my first dive computer but I wasn’t sure if the strap would work with thick wetsuits like my 5mm. At least now I know they have bigger straps available. thank you for the info.

Abdurahman Almatrodi
Abdurahman Almatrodi
2 years ago

Comparing to Shearwater perdix ai, what is the best?

John Crisostomo
John Crisostomo
Reply to  Abdurahman Almatrodi
2 years ago

I think it just depends on the screen size and whether you do other activities aside from diving. Perdix is a solid dive computer, Descent is a computer for dive, mountaineering, sports and is also an activity tracker.

testicles to shirleycles
testicles to shirleycles
2 years ago

another rubbish released as innovation

Knowledge Library
Knowledge Library
2 years ago

Is this overkill for a non-diver but an avid swimmer (pool and open water)? I feel this is somehow much more durable with respect to water exposure since it’s fully dive rated as opposed to Garmin’s other watches which are 10 ATM rating.

College Life
College Life
Reply to  Knowledge Library
2 years ago

If you ain’t not a diver get the version that has air integration but does not come with the integration pod will save you like $400 since you don’t dive often

Tony Velasquez
Tony Velasquez
Reply to  Knowledge Library
1 year ago

@College Life Learn english, for gods sake. You definitely did not go to college if you’re saying “if you aint not”…

College Life
College Life
Reply to  Knowledge Library
1 year ago

@Tony Velasquez Stay mad about an auto correct from 6 months ago L bozo

Tony Velasquez
Tony Velasquez
Reply to  Knowledge Library
1 year ago

@College Life autocorrect doesn’t add double negatives. I don’t speak trashy, sorry

College Life
College Life
Reply to  Knowledge Library
1 year ago

@Tony Velasquez are -> ain’t it’s called typing fast on a phone bozo

James Chung
James Chung
2 years ago

Thanks for the excellent video! I am so bummed that I recently bought the Garmin fenix 6X Pro and the Oceanic Pro 4.0. I love them both.

But now I want this one! Can you confirm that it has the same sports features as fenix 6x? Even comparable battery endurance? Thanks!

Carlos Lopez
Carlos Lopez
Reply to  James Chung
2 years ago

I does have the same features…I have been running with mine over the last 2 months and I love it

John Crisostomo
John Crisostomo
Reply to  James Chung
2 years ago

It has the same features as the Garmin (just a couple months late for the rollout but eventually catches up)

Huw Penson
Huw Penson
2 years ago

sorry man, rule of thirds or center frame… nothing in between

Oscar Gunn
Oscar Gunn
2 years ago

Real talk, just picked it up a few days ago and love the hell out of it, I’m a commercial diver and used it yesterday on a quick job with multiple dives. The one thing I’m curious about, it doesn’t t quite matter if it does but I’ve seen places that it has a touch screen and if that is the case, how on earth do I enable it 😂

Moshe Avisar
Moshe Avisar
Reply to  Oscar Gunn
2 years ago

just click on the screen when you dive and it change screens, thats all the touch screen in the mk2

Slot Doze
Slot Doze
Reply to  Oscar Gunn
1 year ago

How’d you find it in low visibility? Year on how’s it holding up? Thanks

Oscar Gunn
Oscar Gunn
Reply to  Oscar Gunn
1 year ago

@Slot Doze the thing has taken an absolute beating and never missed a beat, screen is scratch free some how, bezels not so much but that just means they’re doing their job. I work in a lot of zero and I mean hand in front of face is all you’ve got vis and I can still make it out. Lights up great underwater. Honestly couldn’t be happier. I wear it all day, every day other than when I’m charging it. Only gripe is the charger itself is outdated as hell. And not touch screen or microphone like other smart watches. But as a hybrid dive watch I couldn’t be happier. The additional switching of bands is great too, I’m running a nylon one at the moment and have the leather for when I want more of a classic look. The customisation of the face with all the user made ones on the iq store is great too.

Slot Doze
Slot Doze
Reply to  Oscar Gunn
1 year ago

@Oscar Gunn  cheers for the quick reply Oscar. Exactly the info I was looking for. They look a brilliant bit of kit. Hearing your experience has clinched it for me. Safe diving 🤙

Axel Becker
Axel Becker
2 years ago

Nice, thorough review. Thanks!

Даниил Базаров
Даниил Базаров
2 years ago

Спасибо, хороший обзор!

alberto garcia
alberto garcia
2 years ago

Thank you for the info.
I have a question for you.
Is it possible for me as a team leader to know the data of my guys? Synching the activity automatically in some sort of app/software? I know you can export the activity via garmin connect but I wish to know if you can do in any other way.
Thank you again for the info!

MedigapToday
MedigapToday
2 years ago

great review I just bought an MK a month ago and I love it , and you are right , it covers all physical activities

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  MedigapToday
2 years ago

Enjoy it

Rob Hall
Rob Hall
2 years ago

I have heard that the T1 transmitter emits a high pitch audible “chirp” every 10 seconds or so and it can be quite annoying. Has anyone who has a MK2 with AI had this experience? Or is it blown out of proportion for older guys who can’t hear high pitched sounds anyway?

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Rob Hall
2 years ago

I haven’t noticed it at all.

Albert Bell
Albert Bell
2 years ago

Hi Mark, have only manage two dives since I received my MK2i after a very long wait due to COVID? Taking a bit of getting used too, but seems ok for the diving …but step counter looks like it works when you move your hand and it only reverts back to zero if you remove the computer before midnight which is not why I purchased it if any wiz kids reading this would be interested in there thoughts or if I’m using it wrong … the court is out 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Great video thanks

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Albert Bell
2 years ago

I’ll have to look at the step counter – I do take my watch off at night, but I am sure I have been wearing it beyond midnight and I saw that it has reset to 0 while on my wrist.

Albert Bell
Albert Bell
Reply to  Albert Bell
2 years ago

Let me know please and thanks for your reply 👌

Deefer Diving Carriacou
Deefer Diving Carriacou
Reply to  Albert Bell
2 years ago

Hey Albert – I wear mine all the time. It does reset the step counter regardless of whether its on your wrist or not.

molina the explorer
molina the explorer
3 years ago

Unfortunately I had to return the MK2i because the Respiration Rate app gives incorrect readings (EXTREMELY OFF) I do a lot of breathing exercises and breath holds and I was getting 15-16 brpm while i was holding my breath for 3-4 min or doing 3-4 breaths bpm and the watch telling me I was breathing 16 brpm. SO DISAPPOINTING…. I was looking forward to free dive with this beauty but for $1700 I can’t justify a partial watch working accurately. I reached out to Garmin they said they would run some tests etc and get back to me, I checked Garmin forums and they all complain about the same issue that has lasted over 8 months…. Hopefully you can review that portion of it. Thank you kindly

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  molina the explorer
3 years ago

I am aiming to give the Garmin to a freediving instructor friend of mine so he can give it a proper workout on that front – watch this space for the feedback/review.

SpartanThe300th Thermopylae
SpartanThe300th Thermopylae
Reply to  molina the explorer
2 years ago

@Scuba Diver Magazine any update on that? Thanks.

Josip-Slaven Delalle
Josip-Slaven Delalle
3 years ago

Great review. Did they integrate no fly time?

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Josip-Slaven Delalle
3 years ago

Yes there is a cool little arrow that shows when you can fly again.

Giuliano_G
Giuliano_G
3 years ago

Does it measure your heart rate throughout the whole dive?

Exploring Nature
Exploring Nature
3 years ago

The only video that explain about the watch the right way.

Fotis Manolopoulos
Fotis Manolopoulos
3 years ago

Thank you so very much for your time and sharing your knowledge 😊 wishing you all the best for your future dives

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Fotis Manolopoulos
3 years ago

You are so welcome

Alan Steiman
Alan Steiman
3 years ago

Hi, is it possible to navigate to a previously visited dive spot in the water using the compass? Because I was only able to see turn-by-turn navigation.

Joe Hennessy
Joe Hennessy
3 years ago

Seems you might be a bit of a Garmin fanboy from the fact that you complain about the Teric charging when it actually is wireless charged and can use any wireless charging pad unlike the Garmin that requires a specific charger. I considered the garmin till I found out they did not include wireless charging, I rather not risk a trip of not being able to use my dive computer because a proprietary charging cable broke.

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Joe Hennessy
3 years ago

We love the Teric, it’s been a staple of our dive gear for a while now. Its just a fact with these sort of chargers that they can get knocked without you realising and they don’t charge. It’s not just the Teric we single out for this issue. The Garmin avoids this by clamping it in place and the cable is pretty robust so I think it would take a while for it to break and you’d know before it happened.

Terry Glasgow
Terry Glasgow
Reply to  Joe Hennessy
3 years ago

Buy a 3rd party spare lol

أبو جهاد الغوينم
أبو جهاد الغوينم
3 years ago

Nice review, can’t waiting for the transmitter review. But I read some Garmin users complaining about the company not pushing updates to there products, is it true?

Ziad ElNoweam
Ziad ElNoweam
Reply to  أبو جهاد الغوينم
3 years ago

no they keep updating but for mk1 to get updated to mk2 it took some time

viragomania
viragomania
3 years ago

Dove 20 dives recently in Socorro on Nautilus Explorer and in Cabo Pulmo. Was very happy and impressed with this unit (and the diving locations). Very intuitive and easy to use. Dive Ap and Connect also well thought out and functional. Now just cant wait to get the transmitter still on backorder. I am glad I held out as I was also in market for update on my Fenix 3 for running, hiking, cycling and smartwatch.

Phil Close
Phil Close
3 years ago

Good review thanks

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Phil Close
3 years ago

Thanks for watching!

Robb Chadwick
Robb Chadwick
3 years ago

Great review, Mark. Garmin seems to have hit a home run. As a scuba diver and a skydiver, I may have to take the plunge.

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Robb Chadwick
3 years ago

You should!

Dylan Slater
Dylan Slater
Reply to  Robb Chadwick
3 years ago

I’m sold on it for the same reason, have you got it and done a jump with it yet? Garmin told me it actually measures your speed and decent rate and will guide you to your landing area. Keen to see how well it works.

James Chung
James Chung
Reply to  Robb Chadwick
2 years ago

It’s killing me not to get it. Ugh…

AlexeyDnepr
AlexeyDnepr
Reply to  Robb Chadwick
2 years ago

MK2i can track your heart rate underwater using a chest strap? The optical sensor on the wrist is inaccurate. In addition, the watch is worn on top of the wetsuit.

Isaac Mont
Isaac Mont
Reply to  Robb Chadwick
1 year ago

@James Chung so expensive .need to figure out how to get my hamds on one. I also make jumps and dive.

Mohamed Nosseir
Mohamed Nosseir
3 years ago

Thanks for video
1-When Dive sharewater Vs Garmin Descent Mk2i the same everything for algorithm?
2-Second dive some people have problems algorithm with Garmin Descent Vs Shearwater?

Mark Evans
Mark Evans
Reply to  Mohamed Nosseir
3 years ago

We were diving at least three times a day and never had any issues. The biggest difference in NDL I got was around four minutes on one of the scooter dives, but I think that is because the Garmin was slightly more reactive to depth changes than the Shearwater, but nothing worth being concerned about.

Mohamed Nosseir
Mohamed Nosseir
Reply to  Mohamed Nosseir
3 years ago

@Mark Newman Evans thanks for reply
I see your Dive for 13 M
If different 4 minutes
If going deep for example 35M
It’s NDL different 1 minutes?

Mark Evans
Mark Evans
Reply to  Mohamed Nosseir
3 years ago

That was our final dive of the trip, 1 hr 10 mins on a manta cleaning station, hence the square profile. No difference in NDL on that one. It was a dive down to 30m on scooters halfway through the trip where I noted a momentary difference, but by the time we were ascending, they both pretty much matched back up.

Scuba Diver Magazine
Scuba Diver Magazine
Reply to  Mohamed Nosseir
3 years ago

Hello Mohamed Nosseir, thanks for watching.

Mohamed Nosseir
Mohamed Nosseir
Reply to  Mohamed Nosseir
1 year ago

@Scuba Diver Magazine thanks for reply to help me
I ask the heart rate can be changed for algorithm
4 meter tired

Jordan W
Jordan W
4 months ago

I’m a beginner diver, does this dive computer act as a compass?

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