If orange dive watches have been rather popular for their funky 1970s vibe, the colour was originally selected for visibility reasons. Doxa is often said to have been among the first to use orange, which has become a signature colour for the brand. Back in the late 1960s, Doxa tested different dial colours in Lake Neuchatel and thought it was the best tone for underwater readability. If this is in fact quite wrong (orange is one of the first colours to disappear underwater, just after red, at about 20m deep), the trend has picked up, to the point of becoming a signature dive watch feature. Here are 5 cool options to get for this summer, to look stylish on land and underwater.
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Orange
A dive watch in a square case feels unusual at first, specifically with the need for a rotating bezel. Still, for over ten years now, Bell & Ross has been renowned for its bold square case design. The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver isn’t just a design statement, it is a legit diver’s watch and complies with the IS0 6425 standards. The orange dial on the model is presented in the signature square 42mm x 42mm case. Made out of steel, it is topped by a unidirectional bezel with a 60-minute scale printed on a black anodised aluminium insert, and worn on a black rubber strap, with an ultra-resilient orange fabric strap also delivered.
Quick facts: steel case – 42mm – sapphire crystal – unidirectional rotating bezel with aluminium insert – water-resistant to 300m – automatic calibre BR-CAL.302 (base SW300) – hours, minute, seconds and date – 38-hour power reserve – rubber strap with pin buckle – limited to 250 pieces – boutique and e-boutique exclusive – EUR 3,500
Doxa SUB 300 Carbon COSC Professional
If there were one dive watch brand to be associated with orange dials that would be, without a doubt, Doxa. The brand is often said to have been the first to utilize orange because they considered this the most legible colour underwater. Since then, orange has become a signature colour for Doxa and is available throughout the collection. Among the recent models is the Sub 300 Carbon, a MONOCHROME favourite. As its name suggests, with it, the quirky cool Doxa Sub 300 is presented in lightweight forged carbon. The watch is powered by a tried-and-tested self-winding ETA 2824 calibre (or SW200), in a version with COSC certification, attesting its chronometric accuracy.
Quick facts: forged carbon case – 42.50mm x 45.00mm x 13.40mm – sapphire crystal – unidirectional rotating bezel – water-resistant to 300m – automatic ETA 2824 COSC – hours, minute, seconds and date – 38-hour power reserve – rubber strap – folding buckle with diving extension – EUR 3,790
Edox Skydiver Neptunian Orange
Edox is among the few Swiss watchmakers to produce deepwater divers with accessible price tags. The orange version of their Skydiver Neptunian relies on a slight gradient effect, with its centre being brighter and more saturated. The 44mm steel case features a unidirectional rotating bezel with a black ceramic insert. It is water resistant to 1,000 meters and has a helium escape valve. The watch is powered by the automatic calibre 80 based on the Sellita SW200.
Quick facts: steel case – 44mm x 15.6mm – sapphire crystal – unidirectional rotating bezel with ceramic insert – water-resistant to 1,000m – automatic calibre 80 (base SW200) – hours, minute, seconds and date – 38-hour power reserve – rubber strap – EUR 1,290
TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 Orange Diver
Vibrant orange is nothing new for TAG Heuer divers, but this was a desirable addition to the 2021 revamped Aquaracer Professional series. The stainless steel case is brushed and polished with a 43mm diameter. The 12-sided unidirectional rotating bezel has a black ceramic insert with contrasting white 60-minute Arabic numerals/marks and a detailed 15-minute scale. Powering the Aquaracer Professional 300 Orange Diver is the Calibre 5 automatic, which has been used for many years in Aquaracer models. It’s based on the Sellita SW200-1 and has 26 jewels, beats at 28,800vph (4Hz) with a 38-hour power reserve.
Quick facts: steel case – 43mm– sapphire crystal – unidirectional rotating bezel with ceramic insert – water-resistant to 300m – automatic calibre 5 (base SW200) – hours, minute, seconds and date – 38-hour power reserve – steel bracelet– folding buckle with diving extension – EUR 3,100
Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton
A high-end option, the Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton was presented in 2021. The model merges both the Diver line and the Skeleton X range into one, giving the dive watch a very unique and sporty look. Done in striking blue PVD coated steel, the case measures 44mm across and has a concave-shaped bezel fitted with a Carbonium inlay. This material is also used in the skeletonized movement, borrowed from other Skeleton X models but converted to automatic winding instead of being hand-wound.
Quick facts: PVD steel case – 44mm– sapphire crystal – unidirectional rotating bezel with carbonium insert – water-resistant to 200m – automatic in-house Calibre UN-317 – hours, minute and seconds – 96-hour power reserve – rubber strap with pin buckle – limited edition of 175 pieces – EUR 17,900