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In the deep end
Watch Stories

In the deep end

Monday, 10 April 2017
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Christophe Roulet
Editor-in-chief, HH Journal

“The desire to learn is the key to understanding.”

“Thirty years in journalism are a powerful stimulant for curiosity”.

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2 min read

Most dive watches aren’t worn for diving but still have to comply with criteria that are calculated for the toughest conditions. This, and some clever design touches, have won dive watches an army of fans. A look at some of the ones on show in Basel.

Bronze for authenticity, connected to stay smart, a vintage design to please the hipster crowd, 1,220-metre water-resistance for underwater kudos, camouflage for the tough guy… When it comes to dive watches, it’s no exaggeration to say there really is something for everyone. Let’s face it, the nitty-gritty of a diver’s watch – water-resistant to a minimum of 100 metres, visible from at least 25 centimetres in darkness, a unidirectional rotating bezel, etc. – is as useful in ordinary life as a snorkel in the Sahara. Hence why so many come laden with additional attributes that are more likely to appeal to the average desk diver.

Brands that aren't afraid to take the plunge let their imagination run riot… when they don't already have a history that goes back to the earliest developments in the field.

It is, nonetheless, this compliance with ISO 6425 standard – which also includes criteria such as shock-resistance and resistance to magnetic fields – that makes a dive watch so uniquely able to brave the most extreme conditions. Not all watches can qualify as a “diver” – only those that are certifiably able to withstand rough and tumble beyond the call of duty, graduating with first-class honours from the watchmaking school of hard knocks. Brands that aren’t afraid to take the plunge let their imagination run riot… when they don’t already have a history that goes back to the earliest developments in the field. From history to technology, from obligatory criteria to an immediately recognisable style, dive watches have everything it takes to set them apart. To be worn with your leopard-print Speedos for maximum effect!

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