Shearwater's Perdix Air Integrated Dive Computer Review
The Perdix AI is designed with both recreational and technical divers in mind. This is a bulletproof dive computer that will easily grow with your diving.
Buying a Perdix AI is an investment in a great piece of equipment. This will last you many, many years.
Keep reading the review to find out why Shearwater's dive computers are at the top of diver's wish lists.
If you already know the Shearwater Perdix AI is for you, click the button below to see the latest price and availability at either Amazon or the House of Scuba.
Click on the link below to take you to the answer of your most pressing question, or continue scrolling to read the entire Shearwater Perdix AI review.
Shearwater Perdix AI - At a glance
This dive computer has all the functionality you'd expect from a high-end device.
It will serve you well in shallow reefs, deep wrecks, and cave diving.
Bluetooth Ready - Connects to your Desktop Computer
Sometimes it's the little things that make all the difference!
The Perdix AI dive computer is one of the few equipped with Bluetooth, which allows it to connect to multiple platforms.
You can download your dive logs from the dive computer and view on your desktop (both Windows and Mac) with lower power consumption.
Bluetooth Smart Ready will also download to iOS devices. This means you can download and edit your dive logs directly on your iPad or iPhone.
Being Bluetooth capable also makes regular firmware updates and upgrades very easy to install. The computer does all the work.
Shearwater Perdix - Optional Wireless Air Integration (AI)
Shearwater surprised many in the diving community when they first released the Perdix AI with the option for air integration. The Perdix AI is capable of displaying tank pressure in all modes.
If you're not a fan of air integration, then this is still the dive computer for you. The transmitter is an accessory. If you don't want wireless air integration, then there's no need to invest in the transmitter. Alternatively, if your budget doesn't quite stretch to cover both now, the transmitter can be bought at a later date.
The transmitter is screwed into the first stage of your regulator. It's able to connect to either one or two transmitters giving you the option for monitoring two tanks and allowing for side mount diving.
Wireless OEM Tank Air Pressure Transmitter
The wireless air transmitter is rated to a depth of up to 500 feet (or 152 meters). It comes with a 3V CR2 Lithium battery which is user-replaceable. The expected battery life is approximately 300 hours.
The OEM transmitter is manufactured by Pelagic Pressure Systems. The transmitter is compatible with the Shearwater Perdix AI, Shearwater Teric, the NERD2, and also other brands of dive computers with air capability. Other compatible brands include Hollis, Oceanic, Aqualung and Aeris dive computers.
Shearwater chose to support a maximum of 2 transmitters to reduce screen clutter and simplify the user interface. Although the Perdix AI does support two transmitters in a side mount configuration, the gas time remaining (GTR) calculations are only supported for one selected transmitter.
The transmitter comes in a protective hard material zip case. The transmitter on its own retails for around $350.
How to set up and pair the wireless air transmitter
Each Shearwater transmitter has a unique serial number. This is entered into the Perdix AI the first time you use it, and only needs to be done the one time. Even after a battery change, the pairing between the dive computer and the transmitter remains in place.
The 2.27 minute video below shows how to set up the Shearwater Perdix AI for wireless air integration.
What are the differences between the Perdix and the Perdix AI?
Shearwater released their first air integrated dive computer, the Perdix AI late in 2016. This replaced the previous Perdix model. There are only a few small differences between the previous Perdix dive computer and the new Perdix AI.
The Perdix AI
The Perdix AI has wireless AI connection capability. This will connect with up to 2 transmitters. Also, there are additional reporting features in ‘Shearwater Desktop’ specifically for the Perdix AI. These includes displaying the tank pressure throughout the dive, your SAC rate, as well as Gas Time Remaining (GTR) information.
The Perdix is still available to buy brand new online, or as second hand. It doesn't have the firmware for air integration so it's not something that can be retro-fitted or upgraded later on.
The Perdix is a worthwhile alternative if you're looking for a versatile, high end dive computer without the wireless air function. These are selling for around $850.
Perdix AI Dive Computer - All the Bells and Whistles
Shearwater's focus is always on innovative and simple displays that keep the most important information easy to read.
The Perdix AI only has two menu buttons to reduce excessive scrolling and guessing.
This is the easiest dive computer to use and customize to show what's important to you. It can be adjust to show Bar or PSI, and the dive number can be changed to match the actual number of dives you have done. It doesn't have to start at Dive #1. Even if you accidentally delete your dive logs, these can be recovered.
The display is 2.2 inches across with vivid color range and saturation. This is a big display that can easily be read in any depth. The display automatically adjusts its intensity based on the light available. It's easy to read whether on the surface in sunlight, in open water, or in a cave. Because the display is big, it's also great for 'older eyes'.
It automatically turns itself on once submerged. The Perdix AI doesn't have wet contacts so this is based on the increase in pressure, and not in the presence of water. You should always turn on the computer before each dive to check the battery level and its setup, but this feature is a backup in case you forget to turn it on beforehand.
The case is rated to a depth of 850 feet (or 260 meters), however, the guaranteed depth accurate range is to 435 feet (or 130 meters). Its depth sensor will continue to function to this depth, but with reduced accuracy.
Perdix AI Diving Modes - Open Circuit and Closed Circuit
The Perdix AI is a technical dive computer will take you from your first open water dives (in recreational OC mode) all the way to trimix diving with the option of 5 CC gasses (in CC INT mode).
You will NOT lock you out when things don't go as perfectly as the computer thinks they should.
The Perdix AI will not 'lockout' after a missed stop or ascent rate violation. Even if you foul up and realize you have the wrong gas mix selected, you can change to the correct one (or even add a mix) as soon as you realize.
3 Gas Nitrox Recreational Computer
3 Gas Nitrox Recreational Computer
Closed Circuit Fixed PPO2
Bottom Timer with Stopwatch and Dive Logging
What others are saying on Scubaboard.com
"I bought a Shearwater Perdix once I realized I could read the screen of Shearwater Petrel on a student's arm 6 feet away, better than I could read the screen of my own dive computer."
Which Decompression Model does Shearwater Research use?
Shearwater Research design and manufacture their tri-mix dive computers with the most demanding technical divers in mind. The standard decompression model is Bühlmann ZHL-16C with Gradient Factors (GF).
The VPM-B decompression model is available by purchasing an unlock code. These are the most common decompression models used by Technical divers.
Water Salinity Adjustments and Language Choices
The Shearwater Perdix AI can be displayed in a range of languages - 10 in fact! These are English, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, simplified Chinese, traditional Chinese, Korean or Japanese.
The Perdix AI doesn't measure water depth directly. It measures the water pressure then converts this to depth based on the assumed density of water.
Salinity can be set on the Perdix to Fresh, EN13319, or Salt. EN13319 is the European CE standard for dive computers. The density value used for each setting is:
Frequently Asked questions
Avoid over exposure to direct ultraviolet radiation (the sun). It also doesn't like radiant heat.
As batteries can and do leak, always remove batteries from the dive computer when storing for long periods (several months). Dead batteries pose a higher risk of leaking and damaging the dive computer.
Wash your dive computer with fresh water at the end of each dive in salt water to remove salt and other contaminants. Don't let salt deposits to build up. Detergents or other cleaning agents will damage the Perdix AI, so only use fresh water when rising.
Never wash with high-pressure water as it could damage the depth sensor. Let it dry naturally before storing in its carry case. Keep the Perdix upright when storing, and out of direct sunlight in a cool, clean, dry and dust-free environment.
Shearwater as a company, stand behind their products like very few others ever do.
Shearwater dive computers are designed and built for divers, by a group of enthusiast divers who also happen to be engineers and technologists. They are committed to providing the best sales and customer service experience they can.
Their Customer Service is excellent. I once sent an email to them via the Contact Form on their website at 4.00 pm on a Friday afternoon, and received a helpful response from a real person only 40 minutes later.
This excellent service is backed up with video tutorials to help get you comfortable with your dive computer quickly. Having said that, there's no steep learning curve with the Perdix AI. They are easy to use and customize.
The Perdix AI uses AA batteries or long life lithium batteries. Its battery compartment has a double o-ring to ensure a great seal.
The Perdix AI also takes rechargeable batteries but you can’t use rechargeable alkaline batteries which are your standard AA type batteries.
It takes rechargeable Li-ion 3.7V batteries although these are sometimes hard to source. These cost around $12 per 2x pack and will provide around 34 hours of charge.
The other rechargeable batteries it works with are NiMH 1.2V batteries. These are much easier to source and cost around $9 for a 8x pack. These will give around 30 hours of charge.
All dive logs and settings are saved in permanent memory so these are restored after a battery change.
Shearwater Research provides after-sales customer service that is unparalleled.
Shearwater has a 2 year warranty on all of their products. Each dive computer is tracked with a unique serial number so it doesn't need to be registered after purchasing. This is transferable to the next owner if sold.
Once the warranty period has passed, the computer should be serviced on an annual basis at your nearest service center.
What’s the difference between the Perdix AI and the Shearwater Teric?
Shearwater released the watch-sized Teric dive computer mid 2018. Watch sized dive computers are usually more expensive than traditional dive computers with similar or less capabilities.
The Shearwater Teric is more expensive than the Perdix AI and includes additional features. It doesn't replace the Perdix AI, it just has some different features.
The Teric has the following features that are not included with the Perdix AI:
If you're a recreational diver, don't be swayed against buying the Shearwater because it would be 'too much computer' for you. These are reliable and are easy to read in all diving conditions.
Owners of the Shearwater dive computers claim these are the best dive computers they've ever owned. Comments such as this are repeated time and again across Scuba forums such as Scubaboard.
In regards to long term return-on-investment, Shearwater dive computers retain a very good resale value. If you had to sell one (although it's unlikely that you'd want to), it holds its value very well, compared to its competitors.
The Perdix AI has many great features so if you can stretch to the extra few dollars, then go for this dive computer - you won't be disappointed! It does exactly what it's supposed to do.
The Shearwater Perdix AI comes in a protective ballistic nylon case.
As far as dive computers go, it provides the best bang for buck, and will simply last and last.
This dive computer has 5 out of 5 Stars and 100% positive feedback on Amazon.
Thanks so much for this thorough review. I like that the Perdix model is less bulky than the Petrel, especially for my female sized wrist.
Love that the readout is easy to see, even from a distance. About time someone made changing batteries on a dive computer really easy! Thanks for including the videos, they really help give perspective to its size.
This is a great review with lots of technical details and I really appreciate it. I like knowing the decompression model used, as this helps me understand how conservative the results will be.
I particularly like a couple of the features of the Perdix, like the large readout. Like the commenter in the article, I like to be able to see my read-out quickly and get the information without a lot of hassle.
I also appreciate that this model will turn itself on if you fail to do so before the dive. My current computer does not do this and it is always a sore point with me, though I usually do my pre-dive checklist and make sure mine is on. This would be a nice failsafe though.
Thanks for the detailed review.
Hi, this is a very informative article, you have covered a lot of aspects here, and one of my favorites is the onboard compass. This is what I need to keep my bearings when I’m on a research dive. This dive computer is now firmly on my list of “must-haves”. Thank you.
The Perdix looks like a clear winner after all my research so far! Thanks so much for making this decision easier for me to make, I’ve spent a long time trying to come to decision on this, as I’m not a fan of buying cheap imitations wherever I can help it…
Your review is great – I love the use of the images to show the screens. These pictures easily explain a point.
It’s great to see so many details in advance of purchasing. Thank you.
I’ve only recently been Advanced OW certified but plan to keep on with my training. I’d like to get my own dive computer rather than continue hiring them.
This looks good but I think I’d prefer something that’s more like a wristwatch that I could wear. What would you recommend?
Hi Martin, If you’re after a wrist watch style dive computer for
around the same price as the Perdix, your best bet is the Suunto’s D6i. This has
also has an integrated compass, gas switching for up to 3 gases and the option
for wireless air integration. I hope this helps. Cheers, Jace
Love that it has Bluetooth The Bluetooth is just the icing on the cake for me. I’ve been eyeing the Perdix off for a while. There’s a lot of good information here that I’ve struggled to find on other reviews. Thanks for putting the extra details in.
Glad to see that you covered the resale value of the unit. I always get a little concerned when I’m spending so much money on something that, with technology, can get upgraded fairly quickly. Do you know if the units can use rechargeable batteries?
Hi Bob, You can’t use rechargeable alkaline batteries which are your standard AA type batteries. The Perdix AI will take rechargeable Li-ion 3.7V batteries although these are sometimes hard to source. These cost around $12 per battery and will provide around 34 hours of charge. The other rechargeables it does work with are NiMH 1.2V batteries. These are much easier to source, cost around $5 each and will give around 30 hours of charge.