In the vast and varied world of scuba-diving equipment, few manufacturers can boast Aqua Lung’s pedigree. Named for the first scuba kit that Jacques-Yves Cousteau and his small, ingenuous team developed in the south of France during World War II, the company was actually founded by Cousteau with the purpose of producing his aqualung apparatus. So when their slogan claims “first to dive,” it’s not far from the truth.
- Auto-Closure Device (ACD) keeps corrosive water out of the fisrt stage inlet by automatically closing as the Legend is removed from the cylinder valve
- Unique over-balanced, diaphragm design results in superior performance at depth
- Second Stage
- Pneumatically-balanced second stage results in smooth, easy breathing
About a decade ago, Aqua Lung launched a series of regulators honoring their founder, and quite appropriately named it “Legend.” As their top-of-the-line regulator, it featured all the bells and whistles one could ask for, without losing focus on the basics: ease of use and dependability. I got my hands on a Legend when they debuted, and it still serves as my backup, even though I have owned several regulators between then and now.
Recently, Aqua Lung launched an updated version of the Legend. Apart from bringing back the classic reg in an updated version, the company now offers a number of variations, including the LUX, the LX and the Twilight, as well as the Glacia, which is designed for cold-water diving. All of the models feature smaller, lighter second stages than the original Legend, as well as a braided hose, which is much more flexible and less prone to tangling or kinking.
The LUX and LX models are the top-of-the-line versions, featuring PVD-finish, over-balanced diaphragm to ensure optimal performance at depth, and the new Auto-Close Device to prevent water from entering the first stage. The LUX has a rose-gold finish, which is much more durable than traditional chrome. If that seems a bit too fancy for you, the LX features a chrome finish. Both are available in Supreme versions, which feature larger lip shields and the new Master Breathing System.
The classic version of the Legend is the one that most closely resembles the original, but almost every component has been updated, and this one, as with all the new Legends, features the smaller second stage and braided hose, as well as the Auto-Close Device.
The LX Twilight is designed specifically for women, and features a smaller Comfo-Bite mouthpiece that better fits a smaller jaw profile, and an even lighter second stage to ward off jaw fatigue, a problem experienced by probably half of all female divers I know. Just like the LX, this model also features the Auto-Close Device.
Finally, the Glacia is designed for diving in the most extreme conditions. It is the most freeze-resistant model in the range, based on the LX Supreme, but with added cold protection, including three heat exchangers built into every step of the system. There’s also an aluminum front cover, rather than traditional elastomer one, which can harden in cold water. An added extra-large lip shield will help keep lips warm and rounds out the package.
With the updated Legend series, it is safe to say that Aqua Lung is at the forefront of the industry; I may finally have to retire my old Legend permanently in favor of a new one. It may be a cliché, but it’s certainly true in this case: the Legend lives on.