Time machines: The latest dive watches

A turtle finds itself drawn to the Spinnaker MCS Capsule limited turtle edition (see below)
A turtle finds itself drawn to the Spinnaker MCS Capsule limited turtle edition (see below)

Oris AquisPro + AquisPro 4000m

Oris AquisPro 4000m watch
Oris AquisPro 4000m

Swiss watchmaker Oris has unveiled the AquisPro 4000m with an upgraded technical specification as well as a special-edition Aquis Date model called the Aquis X Bracenet.

The AquisPro 4000m is the most water-resistant diver’s watch Oris has created, with a 49.5mm titanium case that can withstand pressures up to 400 bar for those feeling the need. Patented technology includes the Rotation Safety System bezel, which Oris says was designed in collaboration with professional divers to be lockable in place. 

The automatic mechanical movement is the Oris Calibre 400m, with five-day power reserve. The top glass sapphire is domed both sides and has an inner anti-reflective coating; the blue gradient dial has a decorative wave pattern, Super-LumiNova is applied to hands and indices and there is a blue ceramic bezel insert with a minutes scale for timing dives.

The blue rubber strap has a titanium security folding clasp extension system for ease of length-adjustment while being worn. The price is £4,900.

Oris X Bracenet Collection Original 18072

The 300m-rated Oris X Bracenet, in 43.5mm and 36.5mm diameters, is the result of a new partnership with the marine environmental social enterprise Bracenet, which was started in Tanzania in 2015 by two divers making bracelets out of upcycled ghost-nets. This version of the Aquis Date features an eye-catching dial made of recycled ghost and end-of-life nets.

The dial is made by melting, then cooling, tiny green, blue and white offcuts with no additives to form a 0.3mm sheet, so that every dial is different. 

The cases are stainless steel with domed sapphire top glass anti-reflection coated both sides, luminous hands and indices. Oris 733 automatic mechanical movements with a 38hr power reserve are used.

The screwed caseback is made of engraved mineral glass, and the stainless-steel bracelet with security folding clasp comes with an extension on the bigger model. Both sizes retail for £2,000.

Blancpain X Swatch Bioceramic Scuba Fifty Fathoms

The five watches that make up this surprising Blancpain X Swatch collaboration to mark the 70th anniversary of the iconic Blancpain Fifty Fathoms are dedicated to conservation of the Antarctic, Arctic, Atlantic Indian and Pacific Oceans.

Founded in Switzerland in 1735, Blancpain is the world’s oldest watch brand and was very early on the diving scene too, but has been part of the Swatch Group for more than 30 years now.

Atlantic Ocean (Glaucus Atlanticus)
Atlantic Ocean (Glaucus Atlanticus nudibranch)

The “playful” colours of this collection are hardly typical of Blancpain but Swatch has referenced the Fifty Fathoms with its distinctive case and bezel design and uses the self-winding SISTEM51 movement (the designation reflecting its small number of parts) with Nivachron anti-magnetic hairspring and 90hr autonomy.

In Swatch style, the movement is visible through the sapphire glass display back. Each of the five watches features an illustration on the rotor of a nudibranch identified with the particular ocean.

Cases, bezel and crown are made of Bioceramic, a patented blend of two-thirds ceramic and one-third biomaterials derived from castor oil. Hour indices, hands and the bezel scale are coated with Super-LumiNova, and all glass has an anti-scratch coating. 

These new watches are water-resistant only to 91m (50 fathoms). Diving watches tend to start from 150m and are more likely to claim at least 200-300m resistance but this highly trumpeted range is more for collectors. The NATO straps are made of recycled ghost-nets with Bioceramic pin buckle and loops, and the range retails for £340.

Christopher Ward C60 Atoll + Pro 300

British watchmaker Christopher Ward has released the C60 Atoll 300, a 300m-rated watch featuring a lacquered dial in reef blue or shark white, with lume-filled hands and indices.

The steel bezel has a sandblasted surface in contrast to the highly polished raised numerals. CW says that extensive research led it to a bezel that delivers exactly 120 clicks per rotation, in case users find that provides tactile reassurance.

The sculpted Light-catcher case measures 40 x 11mm, and the screw-down caseback offers an inside view of the Sellita SW200-1 automatic movement and its engraved rotor. Power reserve is 38 hours and tolerance +/- 20sec per day. With a slimline tapered rubber strap, the C60 Atoll is priced at £750, or £915 with bracelet.

Also new is a bronze version of the C60 Pro 300, with a slim (11.5mm) bronze case and a lacquered deep-brown colour-graduated dial, designed to patinate over time. Its natural environment is as much “dive bar” as “dive school”, as CW puts it, with prices starting from £1,050.

CW C60 Pro 300 Bronze
Christopher Ward C60 Pro 300 Bronze

Ulysse Nardin Diver Net Azure + Diver X Skeleton Azure

Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton and Diver Net Azure
Ulysse Nardin Diver Net Azure and Diver X Skeleton

Ulysse Nardin timed the introduction of its “water-coloured” Diver Net Azure and Diver X Skeleton Azure models to coincide with UN World Ocean Day, because of its matching initials and because both watches use some recycled materials in their construction. 

UN goes way back in time, to the marine chronometers it started producing in 1846, and the two new and very blue watches are there, it says, to support the NGO OCEARCH and shark activist Mike Coots. These watches are positioned high on the price tree, however.

The 44 x 14.8mm Diver Net (like the name!) is 300m-rated. Its central case, bezel, caseback and movement mount are made from 95% recycled stainless steel, while the side case and caseback ring use 60% Nylo polyamide made from recycled fishing-nets and 40% carbonium upcycled carbon fibre.

The watch has a domed sapphire crystal and a sandblasted black dial with an embossed and satinated X. There is a power-reserve indicator at 12 o’clock, with date and small seconds at 6 o’clock.

Rear view
Skeletal rear view

The UN-118 automatic movement has a silicon balance-spring and DiamonSil escapement wheel and anchor, and the azure rubber strap has a black ceramic pin buckle. This watch costs £11,050.

The 200m-rated Diver X Skeleton Azure is chunkier still – 44 x 15.7mm – and has a titanium DLC case with X-shaped skeleton dial and carbonium on the barrel cover and bezel. The black hour-markers and hands use Super-LumiNova on both models.

The self-winding UN-372 Manufacture movement has an extra-large oscillator and a silicon escapement wheel, anchor and balance-spring all produced in-house, which is unusual in watch-making. The azure rubber strap has a folding clasp in black ceramic and black PVD titanium. The Skeleton Azure costs more than twice as much as the Diver Net at £23,210.

Longines HydroConquest GMT

Longines has just expanded its 300m-rated HydroConquest line, introduced in 2007, to include a dive GMT for the first time, which might be useful for the frequent travellers among you. 

The watch is powered by a new Longines caliber L844.5 movement with 72hr power reserve that allows the time to be displayed for two time zones using the adjustable local-hour hand.

The manufacturer says the new model also has a silicon balance-spring and components that, for accuracy's sake, make it more than 10 times more resistant to magnetic fields than the ISO 764 standard.

The HydroConquest GMT has a 41 x 12.9mm stainless-steel case with screw-down back and crown and notched ceramic bezel. The scratch-resistant sapphire crystal has anti-reflective coatings on both sides and Super-LumiNova to light up hands and indices. There are four dial colour options, and the watch comes with a stainless-steel bracelet, colour-keyed rubber or NATO strap made from recycled material.

These watches are priced at £2,550, or £2,450 with the NATO strap options.

Spinnaker MCS Capsule LE

Spinnaker MCS Capsule Limited Edition in whale, giant quid and turtle dial variants
Spinnaker MCS Capsule Limited Edition in whale, giant quid and turtle dial variants

Spinnaker introduced its second collection in collaboration with the Marine Conservation Society in mid-summer – the MCS Capsule Limited Edition. It sees the Hong Kong manufacturer’s Spence 300, Cahill 300 and Hass watches, all 300m-rated, reworked with original illustrations on their dials showing a whale, giant squid and turtle respectively, in batches limited to 300 pieces. 

The Spence 300 Automatic MCS LE is priced at £620, the Cahill 300 Automatic MCS LE costs £353 and the Hass Automatic MCS LE £425.

Benrus Orbit Robot Skindiver

Benrus Orbit Robot Skindiver
Benrus Orbit Robot Skindiver

Benrus claims to be one of America’s most historic timepiece brands, and its latest offering is the US $995 Orbit Robot Skindiver, a rethink of its 1972 Orbit Robot that retains the original design but uses more modern materials and is said to offer improved performance.

The 41 x 13mm “UFO” cushion case in stainless steel with matching bracelet is maintained, as is the grey gradated dial, finished with orange and white hands.

The 200m-rated watch has a Soprod P024 Swiss movement, domed sapphire crystal, BGW9 Super-LumiNova on the hour indices and hands, a stainless-steel bezel with lumed 12 o’clock triangle and a screw-down crown. Power reserve is 38 hours. 

The caseback is a departure, with the manufacturer’s custom Benrus robot orbiting Earth. The watch comes with a stainless-steel bracelet.

Citizen Promaster Automatic Diver Super Titanium

Citizen Promaster Automatic Diver
Citizen Promaster Automatic Diver

Citizen’s new 200m-rated Promaster Automatic Diver is made of DLC (diamond-like carbon)-coated titanium, designed to be light in weight but durable. The 42mm-diameter black case comes with matching black titanium bracelet, and the graduated grey dial has bright luminous hands and markers behind sapphire crystal glass.

The automatic mechanical movement has a 42hr power reserve, and the watch has a black-plated titanium bracelet with fold-over clasp. This model at the top end of Citizen divers is priced at £999.

Orient M-Force

Orient, a Japanese brand dating back some 70 years, has launched three diver models in its M-Force series, with the colours reflecting the “blue of the deep sea, orange of volcanic lava and red of hot magma”. M stands for Mechanical, Massive, Maverick and, with the new batch, Magnificent, in case you wondered.

Orient M-Force in magma red
Orient M-Force in magma red

Technical specifications are unchanged from previous incarnations: 200m water-resistance compliant with ISO 6425, shock-protection shield for the large screw-in crown and black-plated bezel, 3D indices, Luminous Light coatings, anti-reflective sapphire crystal glass and a mechanical in-house caliber F6727 movement with 40hr power reserve. Accuracy is +25 / -15sec per day

The 47.3 x 13.2mm cases (including protection shield) are stainless steel and these watches come with a metal bracelet to match at £645 or with a black silicon strap for £600.

Also on Divernet: Modern, retro & shiny: 7 new diving watches, Dive Time: Your Guide To The Latest Diving WatchesOrient dive watches land in UKSeiko develops its night vision, Blancpain celebrates Fifty Fathoms at 70


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5 months ago

Is showing the date a particularly useful feature when diving?

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