If your plan was to spend less money this year on watches, you might want to skip this article. Most mechanical dive watches are priced under $10,000 (even though the iconic Rolex Deepsea, Sea-Dweller, and Submariner watches, as well as many Blancpain Fifty Fathoms models, might go for a bit more nowadays), but there are several types of fascinating dive watches that go way beyond that.
Most of these are ultra-complicated watches, for collectors who either have the financial means to pay someone to go diving for them, or — on a more serious note — those who simply do not want to go for a swim while wearing a perpetual calendar from Patek Philippe or A. Lange & Söhne (which is as understandable as it is recommended). Others are simply aimed at enthusiasts who appreciate high-end, robust watches (with more than a date for a complication) with the looks of a classical diver. Here are five that made my list.
1. IWC Aquatimer Perpetual Calendar Digital Date-Month (IW3794)
This boutique-only perpetual calendar features a rubber-coated titanium case and a rose-gold bezel; it is not only the most complicated IWC Aquatimer, but also the largest IWC watch ever made, with a diameter of 49 mm.
2. Richard Mille RM 032
This flyback chronograph from Richard Mille offers a big date and power-reserve display and a locking crown that locks and unlocks the chrono pushers. The case is made of titanium and measures 50 mm in diameter. You’ll find more information about the watch in this article.
3. Breguet Marine Royale (5847BR/Z2/5ZV)
This alarmingly beautiful 45-mm watch from Breguet comes in (among other materials) an 18k gold case and is water-resistant to 300 meters. The crown at 4 o’clock sets the mechanical alarm, and there’s also a power-reserve indicator and a bezel-locking mechanism. And if you don’t like the rubber strap, you can order it on a gold bracelet as well.
4. Blancpain X Fathoms (5018-1230-64A)
When it comes to complicated dive watches, Blancpain offers you by far the most professional option with this large, 55-mm mechanical watch that could actually compete with a dive computer. The X Fathoms combines depth measurement (up to 90 meters) with maximum-depth-reached memory, a separate indication on the 0-15-meter scale with an exceptional +/- 30 cm precision, and a retrograde five-minute counter for decompression stops. Oh, and it tells time, too. Read all details about the watch in this article.
5. Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Pro Geographic Navy SEALs (1852470)
For all those dangerous missions far away, the Diving Pro Geographic from Jaeger-LeCoultre is fitted with a mechanical depth gauge and allows you to select a city simply by rotating the crown to display its time on a large disk at 9 o’clock. The 46-mm-diameter case is made of 18k rose gold and water-resistant to 300 meters.
Dive into history: For all dive watch enthusiasts we highly recommend our article “Dive watches through the decades”. Download this dive watch timeline now in the WatchTime Shop!