Subea, the brand of Decathlon dedicated to underwater sports, such as diving, freediving, snorkeling and, of course, spearfishing, enters the professional spearfishing wetsuits segment with the new Subea SPF 900 wetsuit, where SPF evidently stands for spearfishing. 100, 500 and 900 indicate in the Subea definition the progressively increasing level of a product. The Subea SPF 900 backpack buoy has in fact conquered a place among the Best Choice Finalists in the accessories category, waiting for the final winner. The Subea SPF 900 wetsuit is the top of the line offer by the French company and, believe us, it absolutely has all a professional spearo needs.
Offer and price
Launched this year on the market, the Subea SPF 900 wetsuit for spearfishing is offered in the 5 mm thickness for the time being. The available sizes are XS, S, M, L, XL and 2XL, which covers practically all needs. The is no Lady version. Available on the Decathlon website or in any Decathlon store, the Subea SPF 900 wetsuit has a cost of around 220 € as complete jacket plus pants which, considering the many interesting solutions and the high quality neoprene, is absolutely a good price. Jacket and pants are purchasable separately, which is a good option for the customer. Let us see all details of this new product by Subea.
A huge work has been done by Subea in the selection of the best material to obtain great comfort. The neoprene is high quality Sheico, while the external lining is made of a special polyester texture with 10% of elastane for greater elongation. The texture is coloured using a specific technique, the Dope Dyed. Such process has several pluses, first of all it reduces energy and water consumption, with evident environmental advantages. Additionally, the Dope Dyed system does not modify in any way the mechanical characteristics of the texture and makes the colour very long-lasting, with no modification even after years.
To have total high level comfort, the great quality neoprene and lining must be matched with a well designed cut of the wetsuit. Subea has worked more than 3 years to obtain the best fitting of the final product to launch on the market, so entering the segment of the professional spearfishing wetsuits. We will review deeply and internationally the Subea SPF 900 wetsuit, with the test by the 2021 and 2022 UK Spearfishing Champion and member of the UK National Team, David Stephens, our Spanish athlete, Nuhazer Moreno Castillo, and our Director, Carlo Forni. In the meantime, the first impressions are that Subea has definitely achieved the goal with this wetsuit, which is definitely a big step forward compared to the previous products. It is correct to say that those seemed to be thought for a less experienced and demanding spearfisherman.
The Subea SPF 900 Wetsuit is basically a black solution, with no camouflage, but indeed it has a feature all wetsuits should have, especially the black ones. The back of the jacket and the cap have a very nice design which recalls the scales of the fish, and that is made with many white marks visibile from the surface when the spearo in on the sea floor or anyway underwater. We know how visible white is from the surface and how helpful it is to locate a fellow spearo. On the other hand fish normally see our frontal image, so such visible pattern is not something that will indicate to them our position. Great safety element, and also a nice aesthetic design!
The Subea SPF 900 wetsuit has all the elements to enter the segment of the high quality professional spearfishing wetsuits. The contours of face, wrists and ankles are finished with folded externally smooth neoprene to improve water seal. The jacket closes in the lower part with two buttons, which is a higher level solution than the single one.
Both the elbows and the knees have large protections in Supratex, which is a very high quality solution, soft and comfortable, and which loses only a little bit of elasticity compared to the rest of the wetsuit. The only negative aspect is that it needs more time to dry up, but for a 5 mm wetsuit normally used in temperate climates, this is not an big issue.
The inferior part of the jacket has a big band with double lined neoprene. This makes such area more resistant to tear. Also, the internal lining of such area slides well on the external lining of the waist of the pants, and additionally helps putting on and taking off the wetsuit. On the other hand, compared to the solutions with open cell neoprene internally all the way down the lower part of the jacket and an externally smooth neoprene band on the waist of the pants, the Subea solution generates an slightly inferior water seal, and so just a little less thermal insulation in such sense. Still, the internal part of the waist of the pants is in smooth neoprene to better adhere to the body of the spearo, reduce water passage and consequently increase thermal insulation.
Very comfortable and clever is another option which can help many spearos when equalizing the ears, the unti-sucker system. The internal part of the cap, in fact, has two lined zones at the level of the ears. This cover instead of the open cell solution avoids the sucker effect that can generate pain and difficulty during equalization.
The chest protection is wide and extremely functional, but a little rigid, and maybe a segmented design would have helped.
Clever accessories for safety and comfort
Back to safety, the Subea SPF 900 wetsuit is complete with another element all spearfishing wetsuits, and not only, should have, a professional certified whistle. This is the one without the small plastic ball inside, an element that could get stuck.
Also, comfort in the maintenance and storage of the wetsuit is important. Here Subea has had good attention, with two circular ribbons on the sides of the pants, sewed for best resistance, to hang them to dry. The small band of neoprene used to reinforce the area of the ribbons is the only element where the gluing is not perfect. All the rest of the Subea SPF 900 wetsuit is perfectly bonded.