As a new diver shopping for SCUBA regulators, quite a few confusing terms may jump off the screen or out of the mouths of dive shop salespeople. What you want is simple, a device that will allow you to breathe and subsequently…enjoy the underwater world. How do you wade through all of the options and terminology and get exactly what you want, and more important, what you need? My best advice has always been to start simple with the “what’s” and “where’s” of your intended diving and go from there. With that in mind, let’s start off by asking what type of connection do you want your SCUBA regulators to have…DIN or Yoke?
The “DIN” Connection
Yes, it has a funny little name. However, the term “DIN” is actually an acronym for Deutsches Institut für Normung which is the German national standards organization. So, it’s rather easy to surmise that DIN is used rather extensively in Germany and Europe. It’s also used as the main type of SCUBA regulator connection for technical and cave divers. The reason for this is that the DIN connection carries with it less of an entanglement hazard than it’s counterpart, the Yoke connector. The DIN connector consists of a large threaded post with an o-ring at the end that screws into the valve of the tank. When properly connected, the o-ring is captured within the tank valve providing the required seal.
The Yoke Connection
The other type of connector is referred to as the Yoke. This is the most common connection among recreational divers in the U.S. as well as in most vacation destinations. The Yoke connector doesn’t have an o-ring within the connector as it’s contained on the tank valve. The connector itself contains an oblong metal brace that goes over the tank valve. On one end of the Yoke connector is the regulator, on the other end is a knob with a securing bolt. When you place the yoke over the tank valve, the knob gets tightened pushing the regulator orifice into the o-ring on the tank valve creating the seal.
Which One To Get?
This question has a simple answer that can often be complicated. If you plan on diving recreationally in the U.S. as well as vacationing in say Mexico and the Caribbean, Yoke may be your best bet. If you have designs on going into the more challenging technical diving realm, or plan on using high pressure steel tanks primarily, go for DIN. There is however, a third option that gives you the best of both worlds. That would be to opt for the DIN connector and purchase a “DIN to Yoke” adapter for a modest price. This would allow you to dive DIN regularly and retain the ability to use cylinders with Yoke style valves when that’s all that’s available to you.
So, with all of that in mind it’s simple to take a close look at your goals and desires for your personal diving and make the choice between these two connection types for your regulators. Of course, the DRIS team is always here to help.