From the WatchTime archives: These four extreme divers’ watches — listed in ascending order of their water-resistance level — are reliable companions for adventurers who explore the darkness under the sea.
2,000 Meters: Mühle-Glashütte Rasmus 2000
The Glashütte-based brand developed this watch in collaboration with research scientists from the University of Rostock, Germany. The 44-mm stainless-steel case has an easy-to-grasp rotatable bezel and an inner case of soft iron to protect the movement against magnetic fields. It is water-resistant to 2,000 meters. Mühle’s modified version of the Sellita self-winding Caliber SW 200 ticks behind a black, blue, or orange dial. Price: $4,099.
3,000 Meters: Breitling Avenger II Seawolf
The Avenger II Seawolf is water-resistant to 3,000 meters and has an attention-getting color scheme that calls to mind the unusual creatures that dwell at such depths. Self-winding Breitling Caliber 17, which is based on ETA’s 2824, is COSC-certified and ticks beneath the bright yellow dial. The case is steel and 45 mm in diameter. Price: $3,825.
4,000 Meters: Hublot King Power Oceanographic Exo 4000
Few divers’ watches can descend to 4,000 meters. Hublot’s Oceanographic is one of the rare exceptions. This model’s most recent variation has a 48-mm carbon-fiber case and a rubber strap that’s inlaid with white synthetic fibers. The timekeeping tasks are performed by the automatic HUB 1401 caliber, which is based on an ETA 7750 that has been stripped of its chronograph mechanism. Price: $25,900.
12,000 Meters: Rolex Deepsea Challenge
Movie director James Cameron brought this watch along when he descended into the Mariana Trench in March 2012. The watch measures 28.5 mm in thickness and 51.4 mm in diameter. Thanks to a 14.3-mm-thick sapphire crystal and a reinforced titanium caseback, the watch’s steel case and in-house automatic Caliber 3135 inside survived the plunge, despite the fact that the Deepsea Challenge was strapped to an exterior gripper arm outside Cameron’s special submersible, which dove to a depth of 10,898 meters. According to the Deepsea Challenge’s specified level of water resistance, the watch could have kept functioning more than 1,000 meters farther below the surface to a depth of 12,000 meters. This watch is not for sale.