So, you want to know what are the best dive watches of the year? A dive watch is a time piece that’s designed to be taken underwater while scuba diving. It’s a tool that divers use to monitor their elapsed dive time. While dive computers have replaced the need to use a dive watch, many people choose to wear one as a back up in case the computer fails.
These watches are clearly built for diving but they’re also great for swimming, skiing, sailing and any other sport your watch might get wet.
There are simple watches that cost less than 50 bucks and then, there are luxury, top quality dive watches built by the leading Swiss watch manufactures. So, which one is right for you? That’s what this guide is all about, we walk you what to consider and show you the top 10 best dive watches out there today. A quality dive watch is an investment and can be passed down through generations, so choose wisely.
For more of our top scuba gear recommendations, check out these popular articles:
QUICK ANSWER – THE BEST DIVE WATCHES
1. OMEGA SEAMASTER PLANET OCEAN
2. CITIZEN PROMASTER DIVER
3. ORIS DIVERS SIXTY-FIVE
4. TUDOR PELAGOS
5. SEIKO PROSPEX
6. ROLEX SUBMARINER
7. TAG HUERER AQUARACER 5
8. STUHRLING ORIGINAL AQUADIVER
9. ORIS PRO DIVER MOON POINTER
10. VICTORINOX DIVE MASTER 500
COMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST DIVE WATCHES
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DIVE WATCHES REVIEWS
OMEGA SEAMASTER PLANET OCEAN CHRONOGRAPH
“JAMES BOND’S CHOICE”
The Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Chronograph is a classic Swiss made dive watch worn by the likes of Michael Phelps and James Bond.
It combines style, quality and functionality for those looking for a luxury time piece that won’t look too over the top. The Planet Ocean features scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and a silicon balance spring that improves resistance to shock and magnetism.
The watch comes in three sizes 43.5mm, 45.5 mm and a 37.5 mm (the best choice for women).
CITIZEN PROMASTER DIVER
“BEST VALUE DIVE WATCH”
The Citizen Promaster Diver is a reliable and affordable dive watch. It’s powered by light so you never need to worry about compromising integrity by opening the case back to replace the battery.
This watch is made from stainless steel and comes with a blue polyurethane strap. It features a one-way rotating elapsed-time bezel, a screw-back case and screw-down crown, and anti-reflective crystal.
The Promaster’s durability and price makes it one of the best dive watches out there for those who want quality without the heart attack inducing price tag.
ORIS DIVERS SIXTY-FIVE
“MODERN TECH WITH VINTAGE FEEL”
The Oris Divers Sixty-Five is a vintage inspired piece that’s a solid performer and good value for your money. To achieve a vintage feel, Oris brought back the domed crystal, this time it’s made in sapphire and not in plexiglas.
One feature divers love is the date is displayed in a discreet way and the date disc matches the color of the dial. The 40 mm case makes the watch feel very lightweight and comfortable on the wrist.
If you want a stylish vintage watch that you can take everywhere, the Sixty-Five is perfect for you.
“ULTIMATE TOOL WATCH”
The Tudor Pelagos is a technical dive watch made entirely from titanium.
The Pelagos features Tudor’s new in-house developed movement (caliber MT5612). This watch comes in two colors, black for those who want a classic look and blue for those who want to standout as being a scuba diver.
The Pelagos is a perfect choice for those who want a solid sports watch with an in-house movement.
“SOLID WATCH AT GREAT PRICE”
The Seiko ProspEX is one of the very top dive watches made by Seiko for it’s quality and value.
It’s name, Prospex refers to Professional Specification meaning it’s built to a very high quality standard for professional use.
The most notable features of this watch are it’s solid case design and great legibility.
“A TRUE CLASSIC”
The Rolex Submariner is one of the best selling luxury dive watches on the market. Collectors druel over this one for it’s meticulous detail and value retention.
While there’s no denying the Submariner is the most expensive watch on this list, it has rightfully earned its price.
If you want a watch that you can wear with your wetsuit and a tuxedo, the Rolex Submariner has your name on it.
TAG HUERER AQUARACER CALIBRE 5
”BOLD & SPORTY”
The TAG Huerer Aquaracer Calibre 5 combines a ceramic bezel and sapphire crystal which makes the entire front of the watch scratch-proof.
One standout feature of this watch is that the bezel has studs that help for grip while wearing dive gloves.
The Aquaracer is one cool, sporty and durable dive watch.
STUHRLING ORIGINAL AQUADIVER
“BEST BLING FOR YOUR BUCK”
The Stuhrling Original Aquadiver is an affordable, quality dive watch.
It features a protective Krysterna crystal dial window and Swiss quartz movement.
The Aquadiver has the stylish look of some of the high end watches on this list but for a fraction of the price. Click check latest price to see the bargain Amazon offers.
ORIS PRO DIVER MOON POINTER
”INNOVATION FOR PROFESSIONALS”
The Oris Pro Diver Moon Pointer was the world’s first mechanical watch to show both the lunar cycle and tidal range.
It is a large watch at 49mm, so guys with a thin wrist will want to consider this. Despite its large size, it is surprising light due to it’s all titanium construction.
The Moon Pointer is a great dive watch for professional scuba divers.
VICTORINOX DIVE MASTER 500
“DURABLE PRO WATCH”
The Victorinox Dive Master 500 is a dive watch that combines good design and solid value.
It’s powered by a self-winding mechanical movement. The watch features a unidirectional rotating dive bezel with a 20 minute indicator and water resistance to 1,650 feet (500 meters).
The Dive Master was constructed with professional divers in mind with a durable rubber strap and bold dial markings.
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HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST DIVE WATCHES
Water, even invisible humidity is the arch nemesis to the delicate mechanical parts that keep a watch running. To make sure water doesn’t leak into the watch while you are diving At a very minimum, a dive watch should be rated to 100m (330ft). While a recreational diver will never find himself at that depth, the rating is a result of testing, so a higher depth rating indicates that the watch has gone through more rigorous tests.
The bezel is one of the most important features on an analog dive watch. Be sure that you choose one that has a unidirectional rotating bezel. This means that it only turns anti-clockwise. The bezel allows you to calculate elapsed time so it should be easily readable at a glance.
TYPE OF MOVEMENT
The movement of a watch (aka calibre) is the powerhouse of the watch and makes it tick. This essential piece of the watch, moves the hands and keeps accurate time. There are two types of movements: quartz and mechanical.
QUARTZ MOVEMENTS use a battery to work, are very accurate and require little maintenance (except changing the battery). A big upside is they are much more affordable than their mechanical counterparts.
MECHANICAL MOVEMENTS are more common in very best luxury dive watches. This due to the quality and craftsmanship that skilled watchmakers put into making these watches. It’s the heritage, attention-to-detail and precision engineering that drawls collectors and enthusiasts to these watches.
More than a practical tool like a dive computer, a dive watch for a lot of people is symbolic. It shows you’re an explorer of the depths of the sea. Style is a very personal preference, so I’ll leave you up to this one to decide. As a general guideline, the smaller the diameter and the thinner the case, the more elegant and classy the watch will look. Alternatively, the wider and bigger the case, the more sporty it will look.
There is less light underwater than on the surface so it’s important to have a watch that glows in the dark. The analog diving watches on this list use either luminous paint or tritium to make them glow.
LUMINESCENCE PAINT has to be in the light for it to charge up and glow in the dark.
TRITIUM glows without needing to be in the light first.
Tritium tends to glow brighter than luminescence paint however, they gradually fade with time.