Scuba diving is testament to mankind’s ingenuity in overcoming natural barriers, and dive watches are one of the best examples this. Combining precise engineering and looks into an accessory for an activity that humans shouldn’t really be doing is why dive watches have a soft spot in our hearts here at WKOW. So, if you’re thinking about purchasing a dive watch for that 2019 holiday, or potentially saving for that splurge watch, this guide will definitely point you in the right direction without getting your feet wet.
The main functions of a high-quality dive watch is to allow scuba divers to keep a record on the dive time, under pressure, by using a rotating (or analog) bezel that allows the wearer to pre-select a period of time up to 60 minutes. This allows the wearer to understand their dive time, and then calculate maximum dive time before hazardous gases build up in their blood system. Diving is by its a nature a risky sport, so the last thing you want to be worrying about is whether your dive watch is going to give way mid-dive, leaving you more vulnerable than is necessary. This is where technical specifications and user reviews come into play.
The robustness of a watch will be tested underwater. Yes, you’ve got additional pressure from water above, but watches also get banged around a lot whilst diving. This can be from rocks, coral, your own tank/gear and even fine sea particles such as sand and seaweed can play havoc to the durability of a dive watch.
We all love a sexy design, but don’t just base your decision on looks. Instead, make sure the watch has the features you’re going to use the most. This doesn’t mean you need to go for the highest-price watch simply because it has the most features. If you aren’t going to use the feature, you’re basically adding extra expense for no benefit.
I personally perform a simple design when I’m diving because I don’t want to be wasting my dive time playing around with features, dials and buttons. This is time I can spend hanging out with my dorsal appendaged friends. That said, we’ve included a range of watches for different budgets, styles and preferences in the round up of our 7 favorite dive watches below:
Seiko Prospex Padi Solar
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean
These Padi licensed watches are water resistant up to 200m (656 ft), made of stainless steel and the overall look of the watch is quite appealing with a smaller form factor than some of the more bulkier dive watches on the market.
The word Prospex implies professional specifications and these watches don’t disappoint the budget conscious diver that also needs precise engineering. With a lower price point, you’d be forgiven for splurging a little more on that new Go Pro you’ve been eyeing…Buy Seiko Prospex Padi Solar on Amazon
Where this watch really departs from its predecessors is the technology and associated attention to detail. They’ve removed the satin aluminium bezel inserts and replaced with scratch resistant ceramic inserts. And, perhaps the biggest improvement to design is the use of liquid metal, rather than traditional casting and subsequent machining. This produces a very precise, strong and corrosion resistant watch.
This level of engineering finds it’s way throughout the entire watch, including the movement system. Powered by the Omega 8500 caliber Co-Axial based automatic movement which has been widely regarded as a robust and precise movement system. This watch is a true competitor and alternative to the Rolex Submariner.
One of the main drawbacks of the new Planet Ocean’s technology is that they are a few millimeters thicker. This has left some enthusiasts shaking their head as one of the Seamaster’s long running standout trait’s has been it’s slim, elegant design. This watch has been known to actually feel thicker than it is.
The bold design with broad arrow hands and gloss dials, works effortlessly with the well proportioned, precise engineering contained within this iconic and practical watch that James Bond still wears to this day. This watch is definitely one to consider if you have the budget and want a stylish, practical and superbly engineered dive watch.Buy Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean on Amazon
This Swiss made watch with automatic hand movement has been gaining in popularity with divers since the Pelagos’ rebirth in 2012. Because this watch is made of titanium, it is lighter than it’s stainless steel counterparts, which is a great feature if you plan on this watch being your everyday watch too. The titanium watch and bracelet have a brushed finished, which makes it stand out from a traditionally high-polished finish of a stainless steel and tends to hide scratches very well.
In 2015, Tudor introduced it’s own revamped movement system, the MT56 12 with a 70 hour power reserve. The saphire crystal is completely flat, eliminating any distortion that a raised crystal provides, which is a handy underwater feature. The build quality can be felt and heard in the click of the bezel as you move it.
The Tudor Pelagos is much more than a “cheaper” version of it’s big brother, Rolex. The titanium build provides a sophisticated , lightweight alternative to a Submariner or Planet Ocean and is very worthy of at least adding to your shortlist. At least try and check out the brilliant blue version of this watch as we’ve found it to be very striking, whilst remaining elegant for those dinner occasions.Buy Tudor Pelagos Blue on Amazon
There are two main versions of the Submariner; with and without a date plus magnifier. The non-date version costs about $1,000 less and is arguably the more popular of the two. It was also the original as the date version only came in later.
Featuring a 40mm wide case crafted from a single block of a corrosive-resistant 904L steel, and a turning bezel made from Cerachom (a type of ceramic) which makes it extremely resistant to scratching, fading and corrosion. The movement is controlled by the in-house Rolex Calibre 3130. An important visual and functional feature is the winding crown, which closes much like a submarine latch.
This video shows the beauty of the Submariner close up in all it’s beauty:
The Submariner isn’t just renowned by divers, or for precise engineering. It redefined what it meant to own a prestige watch. You certainly do pay a premium for the Rolex brand, but in return, you know you’re getting an incredibly engineered watch that will last for many years, is universally loved and admired. Indeed, a significant factor for many in purchasing this watch is for the status, announcing to the world that you’ve made it. Don’t let this fool you though, the Submariner is a serious dive watch and definitely worth considering.Buy Rolex Submariner on Amazon
The 41 mm case features alternating polished and brushed stainless steel, bringing a casual elegance to this watch. The biggest change in recent years has been the addition of the ceramic bezel. Similar to Rolex’s Submariner and Omega’s Planet Ocean, the ceramic bezel allows the watch to take an absolute beating without scratching, fading or corroding. This is a massive feature for dive watches given that it’s very common to bang your hands on all sorts of rocks, corals, sand and other general underwater hazards whilst diving. But, the Aquaracer is considerably more affordable than a Submariner or Planet Ocean, making it a great entry-level dive watch for collectors and wearers.
The Aquaracer comes in both chronograph (three-counter calibre 16 movement) and automatic (Calibre 5) models. The chronograph models are generally around $1,000 more than the automatic models. Both models are quality, durable dive watches.
Check out this detailed review on the Aquaracer below – FWIW, I don’t think this watch deserves any hate!
What I like a lot about the Aquaracer is that it doesn’t try and be a Submariner clone. It is bold and unique in its own right. Go elsewhere for a Submariner clone. Choose a Tag Heuer Aquaracer if you want an extremely durable Swiss-engineered dive watch that has many of the features that rival its more expensive counterparts.Buy TAG Heuer Aquaracer on Amazon
The 49mm case is the largest in our roundup of favorite watches for 2019, so it’s definitely one you’d want to put on your wrist before buying. Other notable features are the ceramic unidirectional bezel which is great for resisting scratches and bumps, anti-reflective sapphire window and a date window at 6 O’clock. Aesthetically, the subtle waves behind the dial give it a smooth look against black face and the luminous indicators work well at night.
This watch definitely makes a statement, and whilst it may not have the same branding appeal as a Rolex or Omega, it is definitely one to look out for if you prefer slightly larger watches that won’t weigh you down. We’ve seen some good deals on these watches too, so don’t be afraid to shop around.
Buy Oris Titanium Divers on Amazon
The simple, practical design performs very well under low light conditions, with bold, luminous hands, hour markers and graduations on the unidirectional stainless steel bezel. Bezel movement is met with solid, deep clicks – something that is often missing in less expensive dive watches. The date function features a magnified display for easy reading.
This watch should be on your radar if you want a practical dive watch rated to 500m, but aren’t prepared to fork out thousands more for brand or prestige appeal. It is a very good watch for the price and worthy of consideration.Buy Victorinox Dive Master 500 on Amazon
What’s your pick for dive watches to consider for 2019? Feel like we’ve left out some worthy tool watches? Let us know in the comments below. Happy diving!
When it comes to Ernest Hemingway, the average person will only see him as the writer of, “The Old Man and The Sea”. However, he was an incredibly complex person that traveled all around the world, went to parties, was an amateur boxer, and an alcohol connoisseur.
As is true with many artists and honest story tellers, Hemingway was a bit of a tortured soul. So many of his writings are incredibly interesting because they tell the stories that reflect the complicated and difficult nature of being human. He was a heavy drinker and lived a life of chaos much of the time. As he is also known for tragically ending his own life, it is easy to see that there were not many stable things in his life.There were two things that were very consistent for Ernest Hemingway. The first was waking up and writing. He was known to write every morning as soon as he could. The other thing that was incredibly steady was his Rolex Oyster Perpetual. This was the watch that he wore almost every day. It was a classy steel watch that was the steady timekeeper for the man with a life that was all over the place. The Rolex Oyster Perpetual is a beautiful steel watch with a stainless-steel band. However, Hemingway’s Rolex Oyster that he was often pictured with is from the 1950s and is 18 carat gold and has a leather band.
While this was the most common watch that Hemingway wore, he was also had several interesting pocket watches. This seems even more incredibly fitting for Hemingway, the cigar smoking, rum sipping, bull fighter. Nothing says, “intellectual writer”, like the Hamilton pocket watch that he was given by Ava Gardner for his 55th birthday. Obviously, there is no need to constantly check the time if you are in the depths of writing for the first half of the day and chasing experiences in the evening. That is why a classy old pocket watch would be perfect.
There are so many different things about Hemingway that you could dissect and try to understand. The complications are what made his work great, but also lead to his unfortunate end and his misery. One thing that he could count on was his steady Rolex Oyster Perpetual, but even that could not calm the tides for this old man and his internal sea.
Conor McGregor is an Irish-born professional mixed martial artist who is well known for fighting in the UFC. McGregor is one of only two people in UFC history to win a contest at both the featherweight and welterweight levels. McGregor is a very impressive individual who has carved out a great deal of success for himself at such a young age. He is also quite well known for his extensive watch collection, which is evident by a quick peruse of his Instagram account (@thenotoriousmma)
The best part about the citizen? It comes in at a very reasonable $89.99, making it an affordable alternative to the Sky Dweller. And while there definitely is a notable difference between the two watches, if you’re looking for a quality and affordable watch that captures the feel of the Sky Dweller, this Citizen Eco-Drive won’t let you down.Check out the Citizen Eco-Drive on Amazon
Also among Conor’s impressive collection is his super suave Ice Blue Platinum Rolex Day-Date that he wore in the lead-up to his fight with Mayweather. The platinum version of the quintessential Rolex Day-Date packs a large punch (pun intended… sorry) in both performance and aesthetics. Combining classic features of the Rolex Day-Date Oyster collection such as 100m water resistance (perfect to use as a dive watch), robust perpetual movement of the Rolex Calibre 3255 (automatic), full day of the week displayed at 12 (available in 26 languages!) and a 26 hour power reserve. The platinum version features an elegant ice blue face, and is considerably heavier than the other metal versions of the Rolex Day-Date. Not getting $70 Million for a fight like McGregor and therefore not necessarily prepared to invest in a Rolex? Of course, there are alternatives. Especially given that Rolex is the most copied watch brand on the planet. A great alternative to the Rolex Day-Date is the Orient “President” Classic. This homage to the Rolex Day-Date features a 36mm case, full day of the week at 12, date magnifier, sapphire crystal and indices. Controlled by a very reliable in house automatic movement with two way winding clutch. Don’t be fooled, this is not a cheap Rolex knock-off, but a quality AND affordable watch in its own right. Check out the Orient “President” Classic on Amazon
Conor simply has too many other watches to mention without this turning into a massive article. So, I’ve just included some of his own images and videos from Insta below.
Ellen Degeneres wears a Rolex Daytona. Ellen Degeneres is an American actress, comedian, and television star who gained notoriety for her sitcom Ellen. She was the first openly lesbian actress to play an openly lesbian character on television.
Ellen Degeneres was born in Louisiana in 1958. She got her start in local comedy clubs as a stand up comedian before going on to get small movie and television roles. She saw major success with her sitcom Ellen, where she became the first openly lesbian actress to play an openly lesbian role on television. There was some controversy with her coming out in 1997, but over the last 20 years she has been celebrated as a hero in the LGBT community. Forbes has Ellen listed as the 51st most powerful female celebrity in the world.
This video of Ellen doing Nicki Minaj’s Ananconda is one of her most popular (and one of my favorites) clips of all time. Watch Ellen’s video now and just try not be infected by her laugh and enthusiasm.
Ronald W. Reagan was an American actor who served as the 40th President of the United States of America. Reagan was born in a poor family in Illinois. After college, he would go on to host radio programs and then later move to Hollywood and get into acting, finding some success there. This is where Reagan first got into politics, being elected several times to the position of President of the Screen Actors Guild. Reagan would go on to be the governor of California before being elected in a landslide election to the office of President of the United States in 1980. Reagan would continue political success with his reelection bid, winning the largest electoral votes in US history. He was also the oldest person to serve in the office of President. Ronald Reagan, sadly, died in 2004 of complications related to Alzheimer’s Disease.
The Rolex watch is a favorite of U.S. Presidents, and the Datejust even more so. This version of the classic Rolex timepiece is probably the most recognizable, with its 36mm stainless steel case and jubilee-style 18 karat yellow gold and stainless steel bracelet. The watch has a white dial with luminous hands hour markers, and a fluted 18 karat yellow gold fixed bezel. The watch is faced with synthetic sapphire to be scratch resistant and features a magnified, automatically changing date at the 3 o’clock position. The Rolex Datejust is water resistant to 100 meters (330 feet). The Datejust is a self-winding automatic movement watch.
Tony Soprano (James Gandolfini) wore a Rolex Day-Date President in The Sopranos.
The Sopranos was an HBO hit series and was one of the first successful TV shows to get the audience to cheer on a villain as the main character. Without James Gandolfini’s amazing and award-winning work as Tony Soprano, we would never get to see amazing and complex characters in shows like Deadwood or Breaking Bad. I would even say that the show paved the way for lesser, but still popular successors, like Dexter Morgan.
Of course, running a top mafia family can be tough work, and you need a watch that is both durable and stylish. Something that is function as both a timepiece and a status symbol. Soprano had that in the $29,000.00 Rolex Day-Date President.Day-Date President is an 18 karat gold watch (band and casing) with an anti-reflective sapphire face over an analog display. The watch is automatic and self winding, never requiring batteries, and is rated to be waterproof at 100m (330 feet).
The watch carries a high price tag for several reasons. The sapphire crystal is quite an expensive way to face a watch, not to mention the fact that every visible surface of this particular watch is made from 18 karat gold. The Day-Date President features both the day and the date displayed at the 12 o’clock and 3 o’clock positions, respectively.
This is an exquisitely crafted and beautiful timepiece and one that’s well worth having in your collection – if you can afford it.
Bill Clinton wears a Rolex Datejust.
The Rolex Datejust is a self winding chronometer wristwatch and was the first wristwatch in the world to feature and automatically changing date, hence the name “Datejust“. The watch was initially introduced in 1945 with either the Jubilee wristband, or the classic Oyster band. It became a very popular watch and Rolex soon released a ladies version, smaller than the original 36mm. The Datejust has a special history with the US Airforce. A special Turn-o-graph model was commissioned and given to airmen who returned from successful combat missions. It was one of these models that Chuck Yeager wore when he broke the sound barrier. Rolex has since used the watch’s popularity to base 3 more models on its design: The Explorer, Submariner, and Sea Dweller.
The model that President Clinton wears is an 18 Karat gold version of the Perpetual Oyster Datejust – a 41mm watch with rotating bezel. While the Datejust usually sells for between $6,000 and $8,000 new, with the 18k gold version retailing at over $10,000, making it one of the most expensive Presidential Watches.
Grant Cardone used to wear the Rolex Yachtmaster 16628. Grant Cardone saw our post about him and enjoyed it so much he reached out and gave us a few other personal recommendations. When he isn’t wearing his Bvlgari, one of the watches Grant used to enjoy was his Rolex Yachtmaster.
The Yachtmaster was first released in 1992 in an 18 karat gold casing. Due to its popularity and demand, Rolex released a lady’s version of the watch in 1994. That year would also see Rolex release the Yachtmaster watch in a mid-size man’s size, marking the first time in their history that Rolex released a professional watch in a smaller professional size. 1996 would see the release of a mix stainless steel and gold Yachtmaster, with the Platinum Yachtmaster rolling out the year after, 1997. The final change to the Yachtmaster would come in 2000 when Rolex discontinued the 1996 two-toned version, replacing it with a sturdier two-tone Yachtmaster with gold links – the links on the previous version were hollow.
I owned this one for 20 years.