Mark Evans: Fourth Element created quite a stir when they launched into the realm of dive masks with the single-lens frameless Scout, and it further expanded its range with the Navigator twin-lens mask, and the Aquanaut freediving mask. Now Fourth Element are back – and this time they mean business.
The Seeker (SRP: £130) is the company’s first mask which has been designed in-house, and they had two main objectives – to maximise the diver’s field of vision to be as close as possible to the experience of not wearing a mask using a single lens, and to fit everyone (well, nearly everyone!). After diving the mask on several occasions, I’d say they have achieved their objectives.
The Seeker’s phenomenal vision is provided by its unusual lens design. We are used to low-profile masks offering a wide peripheral vision, and also decent downward views, but this is the first mask I have ever dived where the upward vision is unparalleled.
When you are in a nice trim position and finning along, you naturally are looking slightly upwards. In other masks, I have been aware of the top of the frame – or the top of the lens where the silicone meets the glass on frameless designs – being visible. With the Seeker, you cannot see the top of the lens. It is very bizarre – I was straining to look upwards as much as I possibly could, and still the top of the mask was not in my line of sight.
What this means is you get one of the widest all-round fields of view of any mask I have dived, and I can see what Fourth Element mean when they say they wanted the field of vision to be like you are not wearing a mask. That is what it feels like.
What aids this feels is the super-soft silicone skirt, which is unbelievably comfortable and moulded to my face perfectly. I have had several people try the mask, ranging from teenagers to women to hairy-faced techies, and all of them found the mask fit well, so again, I think Fourth Element have ticked the box for their second objective.
The mask looks good on as well. Given this is a Fourth Element product, you’d expect some nice design features, and this boasts several, including an embossed Fourth Element logo above the lens, FE logos and brand on the lens itself and the strap clips, and sections on the nose piece to aid grip when equalizing.
It comes with a soft silicone strap, which has Fourth Element branding on the back, and this is very comfortable and effective, but the Seeker is also compatible with the Fourth Element recycled elastic straps (£24).
The Seeker is available in three skirt colours – blue, grey and black. The black skirt has two lens options – Clarity, with a pure-clear lens, and Contrast, for temperate waters. Grey and blue come with the Clarity lens, and we had the blue on test – it matches perfectly with the new colourway of the Argonaut 3.0, and the Tech fins.
It is presented in a low-profile, protective case that also fits easily into a fin pocket for added convenience.