Five Best Dive Watches Of 2017Written by Sim Wie Boon
Reliable, precise and durable, dive watches have been a staple for sports watch lovers since the 1950s. Often aesthetically chunky and bold, but neither too bulky nor intimidating, dive watches have evolved from being out-and-out tool-watches to casualwear options.
Made to withstand rough environments, ‘proper’ dive watches have to come with features that meet ISO 6425 international performance standards. These include, amongst others, a unidirectional bezel (or a similar digital device) to measure the amount of time left in your oxygen tank, thermal shock resistance, resistance to salt water, underwater functionality, and at least 200m water resistance for deep sea dive.
That said, some brands have been quite liberal in their interpretation of dive watches, placing greater emphasis on spirit and design above functionality. Whichever the case, we are pretty sure that there is one to suit your fancy from our recommendations below.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Sea-Dweller
A legend among professional divers, the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Sea-Dweller was introduced in 1967. Now back with a larger 43mm steel case and black Cerachrom unidirectional bezel, the new Sea-Dweller is a thing of robust beauty. The watch is fitted with Rolex’s automatic Calibre 3235 that is precise to -2/+2 seconds a day, and flaunts the model in red on the dial as a nod to the first Sea-Dweller created 50 years ago. There is also the addition of Rolex’s iconic Cyclops lens over the date display for the first time in the collection. These minute details offer a subtle yet distinctive evolution of the Sea-Dweller line.
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean ‘Big Blue’
The ‘Big Blue’ is the result of Omega’s determination to dive deeper into the art of ceramic watch making. Inspired by the success of last year’s Planet Ocean ‘Deep Black’, Omega fashioned the case of this beautiful blue beast out of a single block of blue ceramic. Sporting a blue ceramic dial with an orange GMT track, the watch is enhanced by its 18K white gold hands and indexes. However, the most exciting bit of this watch would probably be on the reverse side, where you can see Omega's Master Chronometer Caliber 8906, a METAS-certified automatic movement that is resistant to 15,000 gauss. It is visible via an open caseback fitted with the patented Naiad locking system that allows for all the inscriptions to be oriented correctly.
Tudor Heritage Black Bay Steel & Gold
When you have this watch on your wrist, you cannot help but to have a tinge of regality coursing through your veins. The luxurious blend of silver, gold and black makes this watch an instant yes for those who want a reliable and sturdy dive watch but also don’t want to skimp on looking classy and well trimmed. Well endowed with a 41mm case, the yellow gold unidirectional bezel compliments the black dial and steel/yellow gold bracelet perfectly.
Oris Hammerhead Limited Edition
Based on the second-generation Aquis, which was launched in 2011, this new edition features a brilliant grey dial with sunburst finish. Accented by blue highlights, the Oris Hammerhead Limited Edition is a sight to behold. But perhaps the most distinctive feature of the watch, apart from it only being limited to 2,000 pieces, is that it will play a significant role in the conversation of the hammerhead shark, via raising funds for a shark conversation project run by the non-profit organisation Pelagios Kakunja. A great dive watch for a good cause, what are you waiting for?
Blancpain Tribute to Fifty Fathoms MIL-SPEC
Why a tribute to the Fifty Fathoms? Well for starters, the original Fifty Fathoms was the first automatic dive watch and the first to feature a rotating bezel. But what’s truly remarkable about this watch is the circular indicator on the dial at six o’clock that would change colour should water seep into the mechanism. The new edition comes with a polished 40mm case and of course, a unidirectional rotating bezel that is coated in scratch-resistant sapphire. Ideal for those looking for a classic dive watch with a twist.
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Sim Wie Boon loves classy dress watches from timeless Swiss and Japanese marques. Wrist affections aside, he finds comfort in quiet rainy evenings with a hot cup of coffee and a stable internet connection.
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