It's been around for a long time. It was suposed to be a compediter to the early cypres. And in the most basic sence it succeaded. however it had enough problems that it fell out of favor and just disapeared into history. In other words there are plenty of reasons why you have never seen them. They were out there and you could probable pick one up cheep. With enough tender loving care you can nurse one along but why?
And I'm saying this. I'm normally more generous and fergiving of flaws and limitations in a design.
Haven't run into any of these AAD's... how long has it been around? good reputation? comparable price to a Vigil or Cypress?
The reviews on DZ.com look alright but there are only 7.
Nice aluminum battery box (much better than plastic Cypres-1 box). Anodized in Airtec purple.
Must calibrate before every jump. No altitude offset possible. No auto-off (Cypres, Vigil, Argus, MarS all turn off at 14 hours); battery life is about 150 hours, which means you should it off after every jump. Batteries are located in the AAD pocket, which means if you leave it on at the end of one weekend, and you don't jump the next weekend, you will need to open the reserve to replace the batteries before the following weekend.
Assumes that it is turned on at dz level. Can be turned off and turned on in the aircraft. Do not do this at, say, 7000 feet unless you plan to open at 9000 feet or higher.
Functional check (requiring an altitude chamber -- does your rigger have one?) recommended at each repack. Grey area whether 105.43(c) requires the recommended check.
Depending on size of cable channels, may require disassembly to install. The control head is substantially larger than the control heads of other AADs. It is possible to open the battery box, unplug the control head cable, run the cable backwards through the channel(s), and then reassemble the cable and close the battery box.
Some manufacturers do not approve this model AAD.
No tandem, student, or swoop models; no 2-pin models. (? I'm not sure about this; the website says these are in Beta testing, but I don't think they've gotten further than that.)