Scubapro’s AIR2: Updated Design and Radically Improved Performance

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Scubapro introduced the octo/inflator to diving almost thirty years ago with the introduction of the original AIR2. Since then, this popular octo/inflator has undergone four generations of design innovation. For 2015, the 5th generation AIR2 offers divers even more in both performance and ease of use.

In terms of performance, Scubapro engineers have managed to reduce the new AIR2’s WOB (work of breathing) by half, creating an octo/inflator that delivers air as easily and smoothly as most primary second stages.

According to recent EN250: 2014 lab tests, when teamed with a MK25 first stage, at a depth of 30m/99ft, using a supply pressure of 50bar/725psi, the new AIR2 delivered WOB of only 1.34 j/l (the 4th generation AIR2’s WOB, under similar test conditions, was 3.55 j/l). This substantial improvement in work of breathing is due to the reduction of resistance on both the inhalation and exhalation sides of the breathing cycle, making it easier to not only take in air, but also to expel air, both of which are critical in keeping divers from getting panicked and over-breathing in emergency situations.

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The new AIR2 is also easier to use. The flexible purge cover is large and easy to locate, allowing for quick clearing when the time comes to take a breath. In addition, a new Dive/Pre-Dive switch lets divers detune the octo when it’s not being used, eliminating free flows, while enabling it to deliver generous airflow when needed.

The AIR2 not only offers superb performance as a backup regulator; design upgrades have also improved the user-friendliness of the BC inflator/deflator system. Larger inflate and deflate buttons can be easily differentiated by both colour and touch, improving safety on both ascents and descents. The power inflate button features a lighter lever so less load is required to initiate inflation. Both inflate and deflate controls are positioned on top of the housing, making it easier to operate the buttons when breathing off the octo without having to change hand positions.

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THE AIR2 (5th Generation) AT-A-GLANCE

  • Radically improved WOB of 1.34 j/l, compared to a WOB of 3.55 j/l for its predecessor (Tested using a MK25 first stage at a depth of 30m/ 99ft, using a supply pressure of 50bar/725psi.)
  • Improved WOB meets or exceeds the new EN250:2014 octopus/AIR2 requirements. The new AIR2 will be CE certified according to Annex A warm water test directions.
  • Test-proven breathing performance and cracking effort compares favorably to traditional downstream second stages, and in fact surpasses many in ease of breathing.
  • Breathing performance remains consistent at any air supply pressure, resulting in smooth and dependable airflow.
  • New Dive/Pre-Dive switch allows for effortless air delivery, plus enables the diver to detune the unit when not in use, eliminating free flows.
  • Flexible S560-style purge cover is easy to locate and depress for quick clearing, even when wearing thick gloves.
  • Power inflate and deflate buttons are positioned on top of the housing when the AIR2 is in the diver’s mouth, making it easier to control buoyancy.
  • Power inflate button, which is the same as on the new BPI, features a lighter lever so less load is required to initiate inflation.
  • Larger inflate and deflate buttons can be differentiated by colour and by touch due to their different shapes and sizes, improving ascent control and safety when inflating or deflating the BC.
  • Large bite tabs on mouthpiece guarantee a secure grip in high-stress situations.

NEW REGULATOR TESTING STANDARDS

The new European EN250-2014 regulator testing standards were slated for approval in July 2014. As part of these new test standards, the following changes have been made:

 

  • WOB test parameters have been adjusted down to 2.5 j/l (previously 3.0 j/l).
  • Regulator cold-water tests are run with both single (62.5 l/m for 5 min @ 50m) and simultaneous breathing (560 l/min for 2 min @ 30m/99ft); with water temperature of 2°C

Scubapro regs have already been tested by RINA, the Italian certification board, according to these new standards and have been given the green light. “EN250A” markings will follow next fiscal year with the in-line change of marked parts on Scubapro regulator products.

The AIR2 is available at authorised Scubapro dealers and fits on all Scubapro BCD’s.

RRP: £135

For more information about Scubapro products, visit www.scubapro.com.

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