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Astigmatism while shooting underwater

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For the past couple of years, I've begun to struggle with astigmatism that is genetic within my immediate family.  I've been a hold out for as long as possible but now I'm really struggling with reading my freedive computer, settings on the back of my camera, etc and trying to find a corrective solution for my primary and backup masks.  I do use readers for working with my iPad Pro and iPhone while relaxing and wondering if anyone has experience with the Dive Optix magnifiers for a pseudo bi-focal vision setup for shooting underwater.

I've got a pretty good idea what magnification to get but before I invest in ordering a set, wanted to get feedback from others here if they recommend them or if there is another option I'm not aware of.

Thanks in advance.

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I have limited experience with add-on magnifiers but it's been universally bad.  They just seem in the way to me, not sharp, and super distracting at the edge.

I've been using prescription masks for many years and went bifocal a few years ago.  the big difference is that the bifocal area is large enough to be useful, and the transition to distance is smooth and not distracting. Now I only need reading correction and have uncorrected distance vision but still use the bifocals mask with a plain glass for distance. I get my masks from SeaVision and could not be happier.  I just get an updated prescription,  follow their instructions for measurements, and order online.  Super easy, and super clear vision! 

https://www.seavisionusa.com/

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I visited their website - biggest challenge is these masks aren't really designed as low volume freediving masks - an issue for those of us breath hold diving...

 

I appreciate the response so far... Need to come up with another solution for both my freedive computers and the back of my housing... wondering if there are magnifiers that can be attached internally on the housing (I'd much prefer a magnified finder but that's out of the budget for the time being)

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Hi

I am like you. My Dive Buddy and I went through similar trials and tribulations. Have a look at the free PDF eBook:

https://photojourney.smiliemail.org/gallery/    first column in 2nd last row.

You will see that we settled on a flip mask - page 9 onwards but page 11 for the mask. I bought mine from the Singapore company and they were great and responsive. Link is in the PDF.

Hope this helps.

 

 

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Astigmatism is more of a challenge to deal with as it has a rotational aspect to it, for proper correction the correcting lens needs to be rotated correctly to match your eye - magnifiers usually are just a diopter adjustment and can't correct for astigmatism.

I have seen people diving in Sydney using an ordinary pairs of specs in a flip up mount in front of their masks, they use something like a go-pro mask mount  with a clip that holds the specs in a frame without side arms, apparently it works very well.

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I should have been more precise in my wording - Yes I suffer from Astigmatism, but my initial request has to do with using something akin to OTC readers so that I can read things up close (Freedive COmputer, Camera back in housing, etc) - From what I'm gathering there isn't a solid solution and it's an ongoing Kludge to make something work half way decently...  I've ordered a set of those Dive Optx bifocal lenses for the bottom portion of my mask - guess I'll find out how well they actually work for my needs...

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I use the DiveOptix type stick on lenses, and they work OK.  Not spectacular, but better than not having them.  Getting them in the right position is important.  They need to be readily visible, but not in the way of when you want distance vision.

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30 minutes ago, SwiftFF5 said:

I use the DiveOptix type stick on lenses, and they work OK.  Not spectacular, but better than not having them.  Getting them in the right position is important.  They need to be readily visible, but not in the way of when you want distance vision.

Do they stay stuck though? I know several folks who have tried them and given up as they couldn't get them to stick. Maybe it was the lack of adequate mask preparation.

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On 1/18/2022 at 5:07 PM, freediver said:

For the past couple of years, I've begun to struggle with astigmatism that is genetic within my immediate family.  I've been a hold out for as long as possible but now I'm really struggling with reading my freedive computer, settings on the back of my camera, etc and trying to find a corrective solution for my primary and backup masks.  I do use readers for working with my iPad Pro and iPhone while relaxing and wondering if anyone has experience with the Dive Optix magnifiers for a pseudo bi-focal vision setup for shooting underwater.

I've got a pretty good idea what magnification to get but before I invest in ordering a set, wanted to get feedback from others here if they recommend them or if there is another option I'm not aware of.

Thanks in advance.

One word...LASIK.

Went to see what can be done about presbyopia, turns out I was farsighted and had astigmatism :DLooked at lenses and all of this, but while certainly non invasive etc, it is just so much more hassle to carry all of this, remember to put the right one, worry about lenses washing out and so on. Plus as your eyes get worse, you will need to exchange lenses at some point. And dive prescription lenses, at least around here (BE) are pretty expensive...like hundreds of Euros expensive. Guess US might be better in that regards, but on the other hand US medical prices are rather '"special".... , so dunno what is the cost of such surgery there. Not having to use any special things and being able to grab just any mask (especially if progressing into tech diving), makes the surgery worth it....and daaamn, its so nice to see the LCD display sharp again :D

Edited by makar0n

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Lasik isn't in the foreseeable future for me due to cost - I get the lenses need to be attached as far down the lens as possible but given that I have 2 of the same mask, and attaching the lenses to both would basically not have any issues as long as they will work I think I should be good.  I've had a couple of people, including my freedive instructor suggest prescription lenses but even those make my pocket book convulse... All I need to be able to do is read my camera back LCD and my freedive computer...Hope this pans out 

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On 1/18/2022 at 10:29 AM, freediver said:

I visited their website - biggest challenge is these masks aren't really designed as low volume freediving masks - an issue for those of us breath hold diving..

I would call them to ask if they can make lenses for your preferred mask. I think they do custom work. Might be worth a try. 

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5 minutes ago, troporobo said:

I would call them to ask if they can make lenses for your preferred mask. I think they do custom work. Might be worth a try. 

I've sent an inquiry so waiting to hear back from them.

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As a follow up, the response to the inquiry I sent to SeaVision sounds promising:

Quote
Hi Cliff,
 
Thank you for reaching out and for your interest in SeaVision prescription lenses. 
 
We literally just got a new machine that has become operational this week. So, your timing to inquire about lenses for your Mares Viper mask is great as our new machine enables us to make lenses for a variety of different shapes/frames. 
 
Can you please reply to this email with a few pictures of your mask as well as include a copy of your prescription? 
 
After we review your mask and prescription, we will be able to tell you if your mask is one that we will be able to make lenses for on our new machine. If we are, we'll walk you through the next steps of the process. 
 
Please let us know if you have any other questions and we'll be glad to help.
 
Have a great day, 
-Justin

For those of us needing additional help and not finding a solid solution, this might be the way to go if DiveOptx add on diopters don't help.

Before I end up going that route, I just received  a set of 1.75x lenses and have attached them to the inside of my Mares Viper freedive mask - I will be giving them a thorough test in the pool tomorrow during my PFI Safety Supervisor pool requirements as I need to be able to clearly read my SUUNTO D4F AND D2 freediving computers.

Will apprise on my findings accordingly.

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On 1/19/2022 at 1:17 PM, TimG said:

Do they stay stuck though? I know several folks who have tried them and given up as they couldn't get them to stick. Maybe it was the lack of adequate mask preparation.

Sorry for the delay getting back to you.  Yes, I have had no problem getting them to stick.  Cleaning the inside of the mask very thoroughly might have helped me, I don't know.

 

Even after not using that mask for a while, and the edges getting a bit dry, as soon as they got wet again, the lenses were fine.

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25 minutes ago, SwiftFF5 said:

Sorry for the delay getting back to you.  Yes, I have had no problem getting them to stick.  Cleaning the inside of the mask very thoroughly might have helped me, I don't know.

 

Even after not using that mask for a while, and the edges getting a bit dry, as soon as they got wet again, the lenses were fine.

Good to know. Many thanks. 

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On 1/19/2022 at 9:59 AM, freediver said:

I should have been more precise in my wording - Yes I suffer from Astigmatism, but my initial request has to do with using something akin to OTC readers so that I can read things up close (Freedive COmputer, Camera back in housing, etc) - From what I'm gathering there isn't a solid solution and it's an ongoing Kludge to make something work half way decently...  I've ordered a set of those Dive Optx bifocal lenses for the bottom portion of my mask - guess I'll find out how well they actually work for my needs...

Just so you know that there is at least one other option.  This is a diver from Holland.  Loves that magnifying glass.

190319-084901-3-D850-2.jpg

Edited by phxazcraig

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Prescription Dive Masks in San Diego will put the appropriate prescriptions in any mask you choose. Very happy with their work.

Bill

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On 2/5/2022 at 11:54 AM, TimG said:

Good to know. Many thanks. 

 

That said, I also carry a spare set of stick-on lenses as a back up, just in case, mostly because they are very inexpensive.  I have never had to use them however.  In fact, I think that I have given away a couple of pairs to fellow travelers instead.

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This is just in time for me.. After I had Lasik in 2000, I had been enjoying glass free diving for the last several years. But like all good things, it has come to an end. My eye sight is slowly going bad and it looks like I would need glasses for both long and near vision. I had postponed it as long as I can, but the glasses make a huge difference above water for me.

My power is not big (-1 with astigmatism for long vision and near vision is around +1). So, I was wondering if I can stick a +2 on my long vision glasses which correct for long vision and astigmatism or something similar rather than a progressive/bifocal.

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On 3/24/2022 at 1:20 AM, vaidhy said:

My power is not big (-1 with astigmatism for long vision and near vision is around +1). So, I was wondering if I can stick a +2 on my long vision glasses which correct for long vision and astigmatism or something similar rather than a progressive/bifocal.

If the stick-on lenses are flexible then I guess that would work.  It wouldn't work for rigid lenses stuck inside a prescription dive mask though as the inside surface wouldn't be flat.

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Highly recommend Prescription Dive Mask. You send them your mask and they send it back with your prescription. They correct for astigmatism and offer bifocal to read your dive computer.

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