Reviews

Atomic Aquatics Frameless mask

On firts consideration you might think that there isn't much you can write about a mask, does it stay dry? Can you see out of it? However there is more to consider!

I have long used atomic masks, my last mask was an Atomic ARC mask which is very similar to the item under review, except it had a black skirt and two seperate lens rather than one single lens. The fit was excellent but I felt that sometimes your field of vision was a little bit impaired with a dead area in the middle and a feeling of being 'hemmed in' by the black skirt. Yes it looks really 'tech' and I have used it for years but for me it wasn't perfect, oh and I would have continued to use it but for a delivery from Santa!

Firstly the atomic sales blurb, they really do push the mask based on a couple of points, firstly there is the silicone skirt bonded directly onto the lens, this does offer benefits in mask size and silicone is currently the best material for making a seal from equipment to skin, as has been recognised in the design of dry-suit seals. Secondly the lens, it is clear glass, really clear glass with no tinges either due to a cost saving manufacturing process or introduced into the manufacturing process as part of the lens specification.

Now on this last point I find it amazing that certain models and makes of masks have heavily tinted and mirrored lens, the USP for this (very Dickie Beasley ace salesman) is that these tints filter the ambient light in water to make them more like ambient light in air. Now there may be some truth behind these claims but as someone who takes 'newbies' on their first open water dives I do like clear glass so that I can see the eyes, when they are wide n white I have time to remove the source of stress and stop any panic attack. If I can't see their eyes then I have no chance to nip any stressy situation in the bud.

I have had limited opportunities to use my new mask in anger but the times that I have used it have demonstrated that it fits nicely with no leakage, it allows a huge amount of ambient peripheral light into the field of vision which should virtually eradicate 'the dark narcs', which is something which occasionally afflicts me. Now to digress its a strange one, night dives no problems, but dives with low ambient light, so dark or dirty water the low level of peripheral ambient light really does affect me, this mask has, so far got rid of the issue.

In common with most masks sold in 2014 this is a low profile mask which virtually readicates maks squeeze which was so common way back, when it was possible to identify divers in British sea-side towns by the mask ring around their faces! The silicone skirt also helps in this problem by offering a large and very flexible contact area between the skin and the mask skirt.


Mask n box

The mask is supplied in a hard plastic box, in common with other atomic models, I would suggest keeping the box as a sharp tap from a something sold in your kit bag could cause the lens to shatter. It should also stop the lens from being scratched.

As the mask has a single lens rather than a pair it will be slightly more difficult to incorporate a prescription into the lens, not impossible but a little more costly and not as easy and convienient as for the ARC version of the mask, if you wear glasses this may very well be a consideration.

Richies Ratings

9.5/10, an excellent product, only slighly marked down due to potential buggeration for guys needing a prescription lens.

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